Archive for September, 2013

With CGI 2013 in the archives, and its participants energetically diving into new and continuing commitments, initiatives, and projects,  Hillary Clinton is not one to let the grass grow under her kitten heels.  She, too, launched headlong into another busy week today.

At her D.C. home, Hillary hosted a fundraiser for family friend and Virginia gubernatorial candidate, Terry McAuliffe.  She will host  a second McAuliffe fundraiser in New York City on October 15.  This evening she is being honored by the Children’s Defense Fund at the Kennedy Center.

Tuesday will find her back on home turf in New York to receive a National Legacy Award from Save the Children at a gala funded by Calvin Klein at Cipriani.  On Friday she will head upstate to Clinton,  New York where Hamilton College will host her as part of their Great Names Speaker Series.

Finally, she will end the week in New Haven, Connecticut where the Yale Law School  will honor her with their Award of Merit during Alumni Weekend.  Yale has a Youtube channel that will provide video of the event.

Congratulations, Madame Secretary, on the well-deserved recognition of your work, and thank you for the words of wisdom you never fail to impart.   We are always right here watching with admiration and pride!


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Last Thursday, after the closing session of CGI 2013, after the good-byes, thank yous, and departures, Hillary Clinton moved on to meet old friends, some of whom, indeed, had participated in this year’s annual Clinton Global Initiative. She went to a meeting, the third annual one, of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves,  now operating in more than 120 countries in four regions around the world.


In September 2010, as Secretary of State, Hillary announced the formation of this organization dedicated to providing clean-cooking stoves in place of dangerous open-pit cooking fires and  high-pollutant devices and fuels.  At CGI 2010, her keynote speech explained the need for this alliance and its mission.

At this year’s meeting, Hillary announced that she is assuming the chair of the alliance’s leadership council.

Secretary Clinton to Chair Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves Leadership Council


Washington, DC (September 26, 2013) – The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves celebrated its third anniversary today with major new announcements, partnerships, and commitments in support of a global market for clean cooking solutions.

Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who launched the Alliance in 2010, announced that she will chair the Alliance’s Leadership Council, an influential group of world leaders that provides the Alliance with strategic advice and visibility.

“We need to keep the Alliance going and growing,” said Secretary Clinton. “Find more partners; expand the market; put more stoves in the hands of consumers; save more lives. That’s what the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves is all about, and that’s why I will continue to be an enthusiastic supporter and partner.”

Read more >>>>

Related article >>>>

Clinton Announces Doubling of Cookstove Distribution, Buoyed by Carbon Markets

Carbon offsets financed half of the 8 million clean or efficient stoves distributed in 2012, as high offset prices and corporate demand to enable stove projects drove $167.3 million into the sector. This from a new report by Forest Trends’ Ecosystem Marketplace tracking progress among partners of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves.


September 30, 2013 | NEW YORK | “I would be invited into someone’s home, and I would go in and I couldn’t breathe,” former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tells of her experience with household air pollution from traditional cooking techniques, at an event held last week marking the third anniversary of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves.

“My eyes were starting to water,” she continues, “I was having trouble because the stove was billowing out fumes which were something I had not had to live with for more than thirty minutes but that the women and children in the home lived with every day.”

In light of her experiences and recognition that an estimated four million people die each year from the use of traditional cookstoves and open fire pits that pollute indoor air, Clinton – alongside donor governments, businesses and NGOs – launched the Alliance in 2010. Its mission? To spur the adoption of more efficient or clean cooking solutions in 100 million households by 2020.

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It is clear that Hillary intends to remain very busy and involved in the issues that matter most to her. Among her current projects are Too Small to Fail promoting the health and well-being of children 0-5, Beijing +20 to research the degree of progress on women’s rights since her 1996 Beijing speech having a target date of 2016, and her clean cookstoves initiative where she has taken the driver’s seat.

Our “Energizer Bunny” just keeps going (as she quoted from Harriet Tubman in her 2008 Convention speech), and we will keep following and cheering her on.  Go Hillary!  You rock!

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In response to a special request from SophieCT for a post about Hillary’s accomplishments, I thought of this one from March when Jennifer Rubin went on the attack.  Originally  intended as a rampart against Rubin’s onslaught,  it also focused on  Hillary’s legacy.  (Note: there was a follow-up a few days later in response to an additional Rubin attack, but this is the one that appears most appropriate to Sophie’s request.)

About Hillary Clinton’s “Puny” Legacy, Jennifer Rubin …

In her signature style of random, shallow cuts inaccurately delivered, Jennifer Rubin makes a pathetic attempt, in today’s Washington Post, to slash and burn Hillary Clinton’s legacy at the State Department.  The problem with her attack is that Hillary Clinton was not at the helm driving the policies that Rubin targets in this order.

1. In the case of Benghazi, she didn’t quite make it out the door unscathed.

2. Confidence in Obama in Muslim countries dropped from 33% to 24% in his first term.

3. … fecklessness with regard to Iran.

4. … doing nothing to end the suffering in Syria.

5. … embracing Muslim Brotherhood chief Mohamed Morsi.

6. On Clinton’s watch, a U.S. ambassador was killed … (Yes, Benghazi again).

7. The administration was largely mute at a critical time in the Green Revolution.

8. The Palestinian Authority, against our express wishes, went to the United Nations for a declaration of statehood, while we were able to round up fewer than 10 “no” votes.

9. Syria’s chemical weapons were not secured….

10. Russian reset was such a bust that Clinton’s successor, John Kerry, was compelled to dump it as he was taking office.

Rubin’s  major obstacle in lodging these complaints is the job description of the Secretary of State as presented at the State Department website.

The Secretary of State, appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate, is the President’s chief foreign affairs adviser. The Secretary carries out the President’s foreign policies through the State Department, which includes the Foreign Service, Civil Service, and U.S. Agency for International Development

The policies were not Hillary’s.  Nevertheless, let’s take a look at what she did manage to accomplish.

1.  The Benghazi “scathing” –  her soaring poll numbers fly in the face of that one.

2. Aside from a much-trumpeted speech in Cairo in 2009, the Obama administration early on focused attention on East Asia providing no follow-up to Cairo.  This was not Hillary’s decision.  Hillary stood firm in Spring of 2009 against continued construction in East Jerusalem.  No support was forthcoming from the White House.  By Fall of 2009 the White House had pulled her back from this issue.  When Netanyahu issued a 10 month freeze on construction she had to welcome it with open arms … not a popular endorsement in the Arab world, and not her policy.

I want to take 3 and 7 together.  Rubin is also ill-organized.  Aside from Iran policy being in the hands of the White House,  the State Department did what it could in the face of a silent, hesitant President during the Green Revolution.  Aware that people in the streets of Tehran and other cities were depending on Twitter to communicate life-and-death information and learning that Twitter intended to close down for maintenance, Hillary Clinton prevailed upon Twitter to leave the lines of communication open.  They did, as those of us who spent those weekends retweeting important tweets from Iran can attest.

4. Since the 2012 Republican Vice Presidential candidate did not know that aside from negotiating at the U.N. on Syria, we were energetically participating in a group called Friends of the Syrian People, I suppose I cannot expect Rubin to be aware of this either.  From April until she fell ill in December of 2012 Hillary Clinton attended at least five meetings and was scheduled for another which she could not attend due to her illness.

5. She did not embrace the Muslim Brotherhood’s chief.  He is the democratically-elected President of Egypt and stepped down from the leadership of the Brotherhood when elected.  She visited a president, as she had many, in this case to ensure that Egypt would continue to respect agreements with Israel.

6. Yes, we lost an Ambassador, one who was a friend of hers, and that was tragic.  To blame Hillary for this when Congress twice chopped her Diplomatic Security budget and given the conventions under which mission security operates is patently political gamesmanship.

8. With regard to the Palestinian resolution at the U.N.  It is not the job of the Secretary of State to “round up votes” at the U.N.   That is why we have an ambassador to the U.N.

9.  Syria’s chemical weapons – why it is perceived to be the job of one sole person, the Secretary of State,  to achieve this escapes me.  The Friends of the Syrian People have been working together on international sanctions.  It is not in the hands of an individual person.

10.  Russia.  Hillary Clinton and Sergei Lavrov worked exceedingly well together and achieved the very crucial New START treaty.  This was immense,  a great victory for both diplomats and both countries.  Their relationship remained solid throughout her tenure.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov a

Here are a few other things she did.

>For the first time in its history she completely overhauled the State Department , USAID, and interagency cooperation with her Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR).

>For the first time in history she called all of the chiefs of mission together at the State Department for annual conferences.

>She instituted an Office of Global Women’s Issues.

>In June 2009 she  provided benefits to domestic partners of foreign service diplomats for the first time.

>She brought previously neglected countries back to the table with numerous memoranda of understanding and countless business initiatives.

>She kept the alliance between Afghanistan and Pakistan stable despite enormous challenges.

>She reopened the vital supply route from Pakistan into Afghanistan.

>She ensured U.S. access to the vital Manas airstip in Kyrgystan.

>She Salvaged the Turkey-Armenia accords which  she was supposed to simply witness when they suddenly nearly fell apart.

>She brought issues like human trafficking as well as violence against women and LGBT communities to the international table.

U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton is greeted by human trafficking victims Van Sina and Somana at the Siem Reap AFESIP rehabilitation and vocational training center

These are simply a few things that come to mind at the moment, and I probably have left out some important events.  Nonetheless, I believe these accomplishments stand well in the face of nouns like “fecklessness.”   Clearly Rubin is wrong and way off-base.  Hillary Clinton has left an indelible mark on the State Department and has brought its operations into the 21st century with her integration of social networking into our outreach to the world.  She has been a tremendously effective Secretary of State and a hero to many, our own troops at war among them.  We can be appreciative of her selfless service and proud of the job she has done.


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According to the Special Review of the Accountability Review Board Process (ISP-I-13-44A), the Permanent Coordinating Committee (PCC)  is the body within the State Department that must convene ASAP after a serious security incident at a U.S. mission abroad and determine whether or not to recommend that the secretary of state convene an Accountability Board Review (ARB).

P 7  ¶ 1 Permanent Coordinating Committee
“The Committee will, as quickly as possible after an incident occurs, review the available facts and recommend to the Secretary to convene or not convene a Board. (Due to the 1999 revision of the law requiring the Secretary to convene a Board not later than 60 days after the occurrence of an incident, except that such period may be extended for one additional 60-day the Committee will meet within 30 days of the incident, if enough information is available.) In addition, the Committee will meet yearly to review the ARB process, existing policies and procedures, and ensure that any necessary changes are effected.” – 12 Foreign
Affairs Manual 032.1

On October 7, 2012 Hillary Clinton announced that not only had the recommendation been made but also that the ARB had been formed and would commence meeting that very week – well within the timeline stated in the Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM). Many of you will remember that the Tea Party was already stridently calling for this review, however it is clear from the FAM directive that this process went a good deal more quickly than was required.

P 16  ¶ 8  Secretary’s Report to Congress
“Report to Congress: the Secretary will, no later than 90 days after the receipt of a
Board’s program recommendations, submit a report to the Congress on each such
recommendation and the action taken or intended to be taken with respect to that
recommendation.” – 12 Foreign Affairs Manual 036.3a.

The delivery of the completed report along with a cover letter dated December 18, 2012 delineating in detail many steps Hillary had already taken to address weaknesses in security at U.S. missions worldwide also came in well before the deadlines outlined in the FAM.  The cover letter is a brilliant analysis and well worth the read.  If you happen to find yourself in a discussion on the  subject of Benghazi, the events surrounding this attack, and State Department responses to it, you will find valuable points therein.  The letter and reports were addressed and delivered to the chairs and ranking members of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

P 19 ¶ 1  “All of us—from senior Department leadership setting strategic priorities to supervisors evaluating the needs of individual posts to congressional committees appropriating funds and providing oversight—have a responsibility to provide the men and women who serve this country with the best possible security and support. Most of all, it is my responsibility as Secretary of State.” – Secretary Hillary Clinton

One wonders how many times Hillary Clinton needs, orally and in writing, to take responsibility for Benghazi for the Tea Party to stop accusing her of dodging that responsibility.  Breaking news the night before a presidential debate,  on October 17, 2012 was that while traveling in Peru Hillary had stated in an interview that the responsibility was hers.  Her signature is, in perpetuity,  on that letter where she assumed responsibility.    Must she wander the streets with a bell like a town crier declaring, “The buck stops with me?”

P 25 ¶ 1 Regional Bureau Shared Responsibility
ARB Recommendation 3: “As the President’s personal representative, the Chief of Mission bears ‘direct and full responsibility for the security of [his or her] mission and all the personnel for whom [he or she is] responsible,’ and thus for risk management in the country to which he or she is accredited. In Washington, each regional Assistant Secretary has a corresponding responsibility to support the Chief of Mission in executing this duty. Regional bureaus should have augmented support within the bureau on security matters, to include a senior DS officer to
report to the regional Assistant Secretary.”

Not to blame the victim,  but security at Tripoli and Benghazi was a shared responsibility and some of that responsibility fell on Ambassador Stevens.  Of all the players in this tragedy, he, from all indications, was most familiar with the culture of the country and the population in Benghazi in particular.   In his absence, Gregory Hicks shared that responsibility at Embassy Tripoli of which he had been left in charge.

Fortunately, Embassy Tripoli was not subject to an attack, however, the reckless irresponsibility of Hicks’s decision to send the remaining two security officers from Tripoli to Benghazi is undeniable.

By Jeremy Herb 07/31/13 12:59 PM ET

Col. George Bristol, who commanded an Africa-based task force at the time of the terrorist attack, told the House Armed Services Committee that he gave Lt. Col. S.E. Gibson, who led the site security team in Tripoli, initial freedom of action to respond to the attack on the U.S. facility in Benghazi.

Bristol corroborated testimony Gibson provided the committee last month that no “stand down” order was given — contradicting accusations made by critics of the Obama administration’s response to the attack — according to a description of Wednesday’s classified, members-only briefing of the Armed Services Oversight and Investigations subcommittee.

Gibson had testified last month that he was told not to send his team to Benghazi because they needed to remain in Tripoli to defend the U.S. Embassy there in case of additional attacks.

Among the Benghazi recommendations is this one regarding funding.

P ¶ 5 29 Funding
ARB Recommendation 10: “Recalling the recommendations of the Nairobi/Dar es Salaam Accountability Review Boards, the State Department must work with Congress to restore the Capital Security Cost Sharing Program at its full capacity as originally envisioned, adjusted for inflation, of approximately $2.2 billion in fiscal year 2015, including an up to 10-year program addressing that need, prioritized for construction of new facilities in high-risk and high-threat areas. It should also work with Congress to expand utilization of Overseas Contingency Operations funding to respond to emerging security threats and vulnerabilities and operational requirements in high-risk and high-threat posts like Benghazi and Tripoli.”

We do well to remember who stripped the DS funds two years in a row.  There is plenty of responsibility to go around including upon those who clog Hillary Clinton’s Twitterfeed with cries of “Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi!”  ignoring the role played by tight-fisted Tea Party House members who swear they will recall Hillary Clinton.    If they do, we are certain that she will cooperate and be, as always, eminently well-prepared.

P 31 ¶ 2  Personnel Recommendations
No ARB has ever found “reasonable cause to believe” that a Federal employee or contractor has “breached a duty of that individual” as defined by the Act.

We have yet to hear any mea culpas emanating from Capitol Hill.

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Following the attack on the U.S. outpost in Benghazi, Libya, Hillary Clinton, then Secretary of State, convened, as required by law, an Accountability Review Board (ARB).   It was the 12th ARB to have been convened since the law was established.   The ARB submitted their report to her, and on December 18, 2013,  Hillary Clinton submitted the board’s classified and unclassified reports along with a cover letter to Congress while recovering from serious health issues at home.

Both documents were made available here at the time and remain available in the sidebar on the right.  In the wake of their publication, I posted sections of the report in small portions on Facebook.  Several friends thought that was a good way to make the information available.

Apparently in response to demands from the House Oversight and Reform Committee, the State Department Office of the Inspector General (OIG) recently conducted a review of ARBs and issued that report this week.  Four former secretaries of state, including Hillary Clinton, were interviewed in the process of conducting this review.  As I have been reading through it I have found some items that deserve to be brought to the fore in light of criticisms that have been lodged against Hillary.

Since small portions appear effective, here are a few statements from the  Special Review of the Accountability Review Board Process (ISP-I-13-44A) that clarify some issues that some perhaps have not understood.

As for accusations that the ARB was somehow covering information to protect Secretary Clinton.

P 1 ¶ 1 The Accountability Review Board process operates as intended—independently and without bias—to identify vulnerabilities in the Department of State’s security programs.


Then, of course there is the accusation that Hillary, herself, appointed board.

P 6 ¶ 1 ARB membership consists of five individuals. The Secretary names four members, and the Director of National Intelligence names the remaining member.


Darrell Issa and his minions who have railed and roiled since the ARB did not interview Hillary Clinton.  Here is the record.  The emphasis is mine.

P 14 ¶ 6 None of the 12 ARBs interviewed the Secretary to ascertain her/his role in the events leading up to the incident under review. ARB members interviewed by the OIG team stated that after reviewing documentation, they did not find reason to interview the Secretary; rather, the ARBs focused their inquiries at the operational levels of the Department responsible for implementing and overseeing security policies and programs. ARB members were unanimous in saying that they felt empowered to interview anyone, including the Secretary, as the facts or events warranted.


Hillary submitted the ARB reports, both classified and unclassified, and made the unclassified report public.   The day she testified before Congress it appeared that there were those (Republicans) in both houses who had not familiarized themselves with the contents of the reports.  This is  especially egregious negligence on their part since she was not required to submit the actual reports but did so nonetheless.  She, in fact,  went above and beyond the call of duty in providing the documents since all she was actually required to do was provide her own report to Congress based on these reports.  Instead, she sent them all of the information gathered by the ARB, something she did not have to do.

P 17  ¶ 1The Secretary has a legislated mandate to submit a report to Congress on each recommendation but is not required to forward to Congress a copy of the ARB report itself. The Department submitted the ARB reports on the Nairobi/Dar es Salaam and the Benghazi attacks to Congress in their entirety. Because the recommendations in these reports were so far-reaching and had such significant resource implications, the Secretary considered it important that the findings be shared with both houses of Congress. In the other 10 ARB investigations reviewed, the secretaries’ reports to Congress provided a summary of the key elements of the ARB report, transmitted the ARB’s recommendations for action, and informed Congress of the Department’s response to those recommendations. The OIG team’s review of the secretaries’ reports to Congress over the last 14 years indicated that they accurately conveyed the key elements of the ARB reports.


Should I, as I continue reading the report,  find additional information to shed clear light and offer evidence of Hillary’s transparency on issues at the center of  the Tea Party Benghazi obsession, I will be certain to share them.

The bottom line, of course, is that Hillary followed the letter of the law and went beyond by providing the ARB report in two forms when that was not required.  She is above reproach in this review process while the Tea Party Republicans show no respect for law or order in this case or in their current attempts to bring the country to its knees over a law  (the Affordable Care Act) that, while not perfect, is helpful to many and thus good.   Instead of tweaking the imperfections of the law and improving what we have (their job), they would prefer to drive us to insolvency for purely partisan reasons.

Their war against Hillary and their strategy of pulling the emergency brake on the whole country because of a law they do not like although  the country re-elected the president who signed it are shameful and unconscionable.

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When Yale Law School honors Hillary with its prestigious Award of Merit during Alumni Weekend in early October, we will be able to view the event on a Youtube channel with a countdown clock that they have uploaded for our convenience.  So be sure to be watching on October 5!

Secretary Hillary Clinton ’73 to Receive Award of Merit at the 2013 Alumni Weekend

Exploring the theme of “Global Constitutionalism,” the 2013 Alumni Weekend at Yale Law School will feature an array of engaging panel discussions and distinguished guests, including Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton ’73 who will receive the prestigious Award of Merit.

The weekend, which will take place from October 4-6, offers a special occasion for alumni to return to Yale Law School to see old friends, make new ones, talk with current students, catch up with a favorite professor, and enjoy terrific meals and events.

Secretary Clinton will be presented the Award of Merit by Dean Robert C. Post ’77 before addressing law school alumni, students, faculty, and staff in Woolsey Hall on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013. Clinton served as Secretary of State from 2009-2013 and Senator of New York from 2001-2009. She received her B.A. from Wellesley College and her J.D. from Yale Law School.

Read more >>>>

See the video of the event here >>>>

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With CGI 2013 tucked into the annals of history only a few hours ago, the Hillary futurecast is already visible in the crystal ball.  The Hill announced that she will be hosting a fundraiser for New York City mayoral candidate Bill DeBlasio next month.  The date and venue have not been announced.  She also also added a new speaking engagement to her schedule.


Hillary Clinton to host fundraiser for NY’s de Blasio

By Rebecca Shabad

Hillary Clinton will host a fundraiser in October for Bill de Blasio, Democratic candidate for New York City mayor.

Details of the event will be announced at a later date, a release from the de Blasio campaign said Thursday.

The former secretary of State and first lady, along with former President Clinton, endorsed de Blasio last week. He’s currently the city’s public advocate.

In February, she will be the keynote speaker at the HIMSS Annual Conference.   Apparently Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) had been keeping the identity of the keynoter a secret, but the mystery speaker’s name was revealed today.  The conference will run February 23 – 27 in Orlando.

Hillary Clinton to keynote HIMSS14

September 26, 2013 | Tom Sullivan, Editor

Let the #HIMSS14 hashtags begin picking up steam.

After offering a series of clues, HIMSS revealed on Thursday morning that Hillary Clinton will be keynoting the organization’s annual conference.

The former Secretary of State, U.S. Senator from New York, and of course First Lady, Clinton is slated to take the stage at 4:30 on February 26, 2014 in Orlando.

The HIMSS14 web site lists her background on healthcare, among myriad other things….

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The closing session was stirring, entertaining, informative, and inspiring.  Esperanza Azteca National Youth Orchestra was amazing.  The young girls who spoke about their moment were resolute, and Kelvin Doe told the story of his evolution from junk-collector/electronic prodigy to guest lecturer at Harvard at 15 with great humor.

It was Chelsea who brought the young people to the fore, all the while conscious of how much older she felt.   She has a natural way with young people, and the youth were truly core of this closing session.

Hillary brought Clinton Global Citizen awardee,  Anglican bishop and former boy soldier Elias Taban,  onstage to relate his story of transitions, resolving old enmities and building for the future.   You do not need a Clinton decoder pin to get the message.

President Clinton reminisced some with and about old friends.

He  summarized much of the great work that has come out of CGI over the years, and announced new initiatives including a commitment from McDonald’s to revise its menus for kids as well as advertising targeting children in an effort to combat childhood obesity and make affordable, healthful food more widely available in 20 countries – including this one as I understood it.

If you were unable to watch the livestream, you can see the video HERE.


Closing Plenary Session

3:30 PM –

 5:00 PM

While the news is often focused on crises and disasters, and while half the world continues to live on less than $2 a day, it becomes too easy to overlook the progress made over the last 50 years. Investing in the present through continued and renewed optimism and action around proven solutions to global challenges—while being forward-thinking and envisioning how to best mobilize the right entities for the future—will greatly accelerate the advancements made in the recent past.

Hosted by President Clinton, Secretary Clinton, and Chelsea Clinton, this session will feature cross-sector leaders and CGI commitment-makers who will share the progress of their efforts and their view of a more equitable, stable, and sustainable future.


Hillary Rodham Clinton, Former Secretary of State of the United States
Chelsea Clinton , Vice Chair, Clinton Foundation
President Bill Clinton, Founding Chairman, Clinton Global Initiative; 42nd President of the United States


Kelvin Doe, Student and Innovator, Prince of Wales School
Elias Taban, National Bishop, Evangelical Presbyterian Church of South Sudan and Uganda

Musical Entertainer:

Esperanza Azteca National Youth Orchestra

President Clinton, Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Chelsea Clinton Emphasize Optimism and Action on Closing Day of 2013 Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting

At ninth CGI Annual Meeting, members made over 160 new Commitments to Action, expected to impact nearly 22.2 million people and valued at more than $10.8 billion. To date, nearly 2,500 commitments have been made, improving the lives of over 430 million people in more than 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued at $87.9 billion.

CGI University 2014 to be hosted by Arizona State University March 21-23, 2014

New York, NY – Today, President Bill Clinton, Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Chelsea Clinton closed the ninth Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting, emphasizing optimism and mobilizing for action to address the most pressing global challenges. Over three days, CGI members made over 160 new Commitments to Action, expected to impact nearly 22.2 million lives and valued at more than $10.8 billion when fully funded and implemented.

Through the CGI commitments announced this year, nearly 27 million metric tons of CO2 will not be released into the atmosphere, more than 2 million girls will be reached by efforts specifically targeting female enrollment in schools, more than 11.6 million children will have a better education, nearly 4 million people will have increased access to health services, and more than $7 billion will be invested in or loaned to small- and medium-sized enterprises.

“This year’s commitments highlight the enthusiasm, creativity, and general characteristic of CGI members,” said President Clinton. “They also reinforced our theme of ‘mobilizing for impact.’  So many partners have come together, to increase their impact by drawing upon each other’s strengths and creating new partnerships to truly put ideas into action: this is what CGI is all about. I am so grateful to everyone who joined us this year, whether in person or online, and who continue to work with us to create a better world.”

Two major Commitments to Action were announced today, focusing on health and on animal preservation. President Clinton, joined by Don Thompson, President and CEO of McDonald’s, and Dr. Howell Wechsler, CEO, Alliance for a Healthier Generation, founded by the Clinton Foundation and American Heart Association, announced a partnership to increase customers’ access to fruit and vegetables and help families and children to make informed choices in keeping with balanced lifestyles.

Former Secretary Clinton, Chelsea Clinton, and African government leaders including the Presidents of Burkina Faso, Cote D’Ivoire, Gabon, Malawi, Tanzania, Uganda, and Ministers from Botswana and Zambia made an announcement with leaders of the Wildlife Conservation Society, the African Wildlife Foundation, the World Wildlife Fund, Conservation International, the International Fund for Animal Welfare, Save the Elephants, the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, and the Jane Goodall Institute regarding Partnership to Save Africa’s Elephants, a new Commitment to Action aiming to end elephant poaching by addressing poaching, trafficking, and international demand.

CGI members will convene in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil December 8-10, 2013 for CGI Latin America to form partnerships to create effective solutions to the region’s most pressing social and environmental challenges.

Chelsea Clinton announced that Arizona State University has been chosen as the host campus for CGI University 2014. The gathering will convene students, youth organizations, topic experts, and civically-minded celebrities to explore innovative solutions to pressing global challenges. CGI U will take place March 21-23 and convene more than 1,000 students representing approximately 300 colleges and universities around the world.

Featured speakers on the closing day of the Annual Meeting included H.E. Sheikh Abdullah Al Thani, Chairman, Ooredoo Group; Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Founder and Chairperson, BRAC; Maria Bartiromo, Anchor of CNBC’s “Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo” and “On the Money with Maria Bartiromo”; Anne Bouverot, Director General, GSMA; Francis Collins, Director, National Institutes of Health; Kelvin Doe, Student and Innovator, Prince of Wales School; Esther Duflo, Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development, MIT and Director, Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL); Regina E. Dugan, Senior Vice President, Advanced Technology and Projects, Motorola Mobility; Hikmet Ersek, President and CEO, The Western Union Company; Helene D. Gayle, President and CEO, CARE; Tony James, President and COO, Blackstone; Antony Jenkins, Group Chief Executive, Barclays PLC; Donna Karan, Founder, Urban Zen Foundation; Betty Liu, Anchor and Editor-at-Large, Bloomberg TV; Peter R. Orszag, Vice Chairman, Public Sector and Chairman, Financial Strategies and Solutions, Citibank; Bre Pettis, Chief Executive Officer, Makerbot Industries; Juliana Rotich, Co-founder and Executive Director, Ushahidi Inc; Bunker Roy, Founder and Director, The Barefoot College; Ricardo B. Salinas, Founder and Chairman, Grupo Salinas; Peter Sands, Group Chief Executive, Standard Chartered Bank; Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman, Google; S.D. Shibulal, Managing Director and CEO, Infosys Limited; Elias Taban, National Bishop, Evangelical Presbyterian Church of South Sudan and Uganda. Esperanza Azteca National Youth Orchestra closed the session with a performance.

New commitments were announced in Plenary Sessions today:

Accelerating Access to Financial Services: Banking on Change
Commitment by: Barclays PLC
Partners: Plan International; Care International; Accenture Development Partnerships
In 2008, Barclays committed to forming the Banking on Change partnership to extend and develop access to basic financial services for poor people in Africa, Asia, and South America. To date, the partnership has reached 513,000 people, exceeding its original target. On average, each member has saved $58 per year. The Banking on Change initiative has also shown that very poor people do have the capacity to save and are highly creditworthy: repayment rates on the loans provided have ranged from 98 to 100 percent.

Enabling Education and Livelihood for 2M Rural Families
Commitment by: Drishtee Foundation
In 2008, the Drishtee Foundation committed to providing relevant educational opportunities that will create a clear path towards gainful employment to underserved rural communities in India. To date, Drishtee has launched two Dhruv Tara Kendra (DTK) training centers. Drishtee recently signed a ten-year partnership agreement with National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) for capacity building and training of 758,480 rural youth.

Fashion Forward: Scaling Market Access for Rural Artisans
Commitment by: Mercado Global
Partners: Red Envelope; VivaTerra; Levi Strauss Foundation; Holt Renfrew
In 2013, Mercado Global committed to scaling its sustainable sourcing practices by recruiting 62 additional brands and retailers to partner with indigenous women’s artisan cooperatives in Guatemala, and better integrate women-owned SMEs into global supply chains. As a result, an additional 112 indigenous women artisans will gain income-earning opportunities in textiles and 40 additional artisans will have increased access to microloans and training to grow their small businesses.

Made in Africa: Jobs, Women, and Girls
Commitment by: Liberty & Justice
Partners: The Eleos Foundation; Serious Change; Humanity United; Root Capital, Inc.; Invested Development; TTSL Charitable Foundation; Sorenson Impact Fund
In 2013, Liberty & Justice committed to launching “Made in Africa,” a network of five African social enterprise apparel factories. Made in Africa will generate $45 million in revenue over three years and will create 2,000 jobs through supply chain partnerships with multi-national apparel companies to build Africa’s apparel manufacturing economy.

Rehumanizing Retail: Scaling Artisan Production
Commitment by: West Elm
Partners: Caribbean Crafts; HEINEKEN; The Aspen Institute; Better Cotton Initiative; Craftmark; Craft Link; Fair Trade USA; Caribbean Crafts; Etsy, Inc; Swahili Imports; Raj; Rupalee; Everest
In 2013, West Elm committed $35 million in purchase order financing paid directly to artisans who use handcraft techniques, a 40 percent increase from $25 million in 2013. In addition, West Elm committed to collaborate with over 20 artisan groups in 15 countries, making 3-5 year commitments to artisan manufacturers in the developing world, creating over 4,500 economic opportunities for artisans.

Partnership to Save the Elephants
Commitment by: Wildlife Conservation Society; African Wildlife Foundation; World Wildlife Fund; Conservation International; International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW)
Partners: African Parks Network; Association of Zoos and Aquariums; Freeland Foundation; International Conservation Caucus Foundation (ICCF); Save the Elephants; TRAFFIC; The Howard G. Buffett Foundation; WildlifeDirect Inc.; National Geographic Society; WildAid; Frankfurt Zoological Society
In 2013, Wildlife Conservation Society, African Wildlife Foundation, World Wildlife Fund, International Fund for Animal Welfare, Conservation International, and their partners committed to preventing further elephant poaching by directly targeting the chief drivers of poaching. This commitment takes a triple pronged approach by dedicating funding to: stop the killing, the trafficking, and the demand. The coalition will work with African leaders to support their governments’ efforts to curb poaching and trafficking. It will also work to stop the demand internationally by building on current awareness campaigns and promoting engagement with consumer country governments.

Happy Meals & Helping Families Make Smart Food Choices
Commitment by: McDonald’s Corporation
Partners: Alliance for a Healthier Generation
In 2013, McDonald’s in partnership with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation committed to a set of actions to increase families’ access to affordable fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy in 20 major markets by 2020.

The Freedom Fund: Galvanizing Resources to End Slavery
Commitment by: Humanity United
Partners: Legatum Foundation; Walk Free
In 2013, Humanity United committed to establishing a $100 million Freedom Fund to fight modern day slavery. The Freedom Fund will strategically coordinate current resources, galvanize new donors and interested parties, and align investments for highest impact in the fight against slavery.

Dedicating Sport Development to Improving Food Security
Commitment by: Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee
Partners: Qatar National Food Security Programme
In 2013, the Qatar 2022 Supreme Committee (Q22) committed to investing in the research and development of adapting athletic cooling facilities into sustainable greenhouse food production infrastructure. This technology aims to impact the two million people living in Qatar, with the potential to expand into regions of the world that also suffer from food insecurity due to harsh climate.

The Girl Declaration: Girls in the Post-2015 Framework
Commitment by: Nike Foundation
Partners: International Center for Research on Women; United Nations Foundation; NoVo Foundation; Girls Not Brides
In 2013, The Nike Foundation committed to launch and mobilize action through the Girl Declaration, which will inform and influence the new global development framework to replace the Millennium Development Goals. The Girl Declaration is a call to action to embed adolescent girls in this Post-2015 development framework, amplifying the needs of adolescent girls, and building on the evidence base about the actions that are most critical to unleashing girls’ potential. The commitment will bring together politicians, industry leaders, private sector executives, and influential personalities to mobilize a series of actions to further these priorities through targeted outreach and dedicated resources for girls.

Progress reports were announced in Plenary Sessions today:

The WELL Building Standard
Commitment by: Delos Living
Partners: Jason F. McLennan; Deepak Chopra; Shangri-La Industries; Webcor Group
In 2012, Delos committed to developing and deploying the WELL standard, the first building standard focused exclusively on people’s health and wellness, prescribing construction techniques and technologies to address key parameters identified by Delos as impacting human health. The Standard is meant to operate alongside new and existing sustainability-based building standards, such as LEED and the Living Building Challenge. Delos is currently continuing to refine the WELL Building Standard as new technologies are developed and new health pathways are understood. The U.S. Conference of Mayors recently endorsed the Standard and encourages buildings to achieve it. Delos and the MGM Grand recently collaborated to launch a StayWell program in Las Vegas in over 170 hotel rooms. In addition, Delos is constructing a five unit wellness residence in New York City, with occupancy before the end of 2013. Delos is also helping CBRE create a wellness office for their headquarters in downtown Los Angeles and office in New York City.

PROMESA: Hope Azteca Symphony Orchestra
Commitment by: Fundación Azteca
Partners: Department of Public Education, Mexico; Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes; FESNOJIV; Estrella Blanca
In 2010, Fundación Azteca committed to establishing orchestras for young people throughout the 32 Mexican states, each serving a unique community and allowing children to learn about and experience music in a new way. To date, Fundación Azteca has successfully established working orchestras in 29 states in Mexico, serving nearly 12,000 young people, and is ready to reach 500,000 over the next ten years.

The 2013 CGI Annual Meeting is sponsored by Tom Golisano, Ambassador Gianna Angelopoulos, Hult International Business School, Rockefeller Foundation, Starkey Hearing Foundation, Victor Pinchuk Foundation, Barclays, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The Coca-Cola Company, Duke Energy, Ford Foundation, P&G, Shangri-La Industries, United Postcode Lotteries, Varkey Gems Foundation, BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina, Cisco, Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women, NRG, APCO Worldwide, Aft, Booz Allen Hamilton, Delos, Deutsche Bank, Dow, ExxonMobile, HP, Fuel Freedom Foundation, the Inter-American Development Bank, InterEnergy, Laureate International Universities, Microsoft, Nike Foundation, Pfizer, Standard Chartered, Swiss Re, Toyota, unite4:good, Western Union, Diageo and Jive.

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Hillary and Chelsea spoke this afternoon about their personal and policy concerns related to wildlife trafficking and elephant poaching, the dangers they pose, and initiatives to end them.

View the video here >>>>

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8 African nations, 16 NGOs, $80 million, and a path to end elephant poaching. and I are thrilled!

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Plenary Session

4:00 PM –

 5:30 PM

Healthier Futures: Prioritizing Prevention

The rise in non-communicable diseases (NCDs) is one of the greatest threats to global health and economic development in the 21st century, accounting for 63 percent of global deaths. The leading risk factors — tobacco use, unhealthy diets, and physical inactivity — play a major role in the cause of high-burden NCDs such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and cancer.

In this session, key leaders from across sectors will share HOW members can:

• position prevention, with an emphasis on risk factors, at the center of the health debate
• invest in more economical measures to address NCDs — such as early testing and diagnosis — rather than costly treatment
• leverage new insights from the field of behavioral economics to incentivize change at home and in the workplace

President Obama and President Clinton will engage in a conversation about the benefits and future of health care reform in America and access to quality health care around the globe.



Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair, Clinton Foundation


Margaret Chan, Director-General, World Health Organization
Adrian Gore, Chief Executive Officer, Discovery Holdings Limited
Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, President and CEO, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Closing Conversation


President Barack Obama, 44th President of the United States
President Bill Clinton, Founding Chairman, Clinton Global Initiative; 42nd President of the United States

View the video of the full conversation here  >>>>

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