Skip to main content
Support
Article

Africa Program Honors Associate Director and Senior Diplomatic Fellow Alyson Grunder

The Wilson Center Africa Program offers our tremendous appreciation and gratitude to Ms. Alyson Grunder whose tenure as the Africa Program Associate Director and a U.S. Department of State Senior Diplomatic Fellow with the Wilson Center concluded on July 15, 2022.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Detailed from the U.S. Department of State, Alyson contributed immensely to the Africa Program through her leadership and wisdom, expertise, experience, and mentorship. In particular, Alyson served as the Africa Program’s lead for three key initiatives of strategic importance to U.S.-Africa relations:

• The “Commemorating 200 Years of U.S.-Liberia Ties: Moving Forward Together” event that commemorated the bicentennial of U.S.-Liberia ties

• The “Africa’s Policy Priorities for Food Security and Nutrition” event that encouraged engagement to Africa’s development goals and partnership with the United States

• The Africa Program’s contribution to the publication “Lonely at the Barricades: How to Strengthen the Global Defense of Democracy” 

Alyson’s active presence as the Africa Program’s representative in the Wilson Center’s Senior Management Meetings played a vital role in communication amongst Wilson Center programs; and her coordination of the Sudans Working Group enhanced its status as a key forum in Washington D.C. for substantive policy-related discussions about the two countries.

Her willingness to contribute to the program also included planning and speaking at program events including: the “A New Day for U.S.-Tanzania Relations: A Conversation with H.E. Samia Suluhu Hassan, President of the United Republic of Tanzania” roundtable, the “Biennial Lecture and Dialogue of the Brown Capital Management Africa Forum” reception, “Africa’s Policy Priorities for Food Security and Nutrition”, and Southern Voices Network for Peacebuilding (SVNP) events.

Additionally, Alyson served a critical role to the program as editor for the program’s blog Africa Up Close as well as our annual publication Africa: Year in Review. Alyson also authored the Africa Program’s contributions to the Wilson Center publication, On the Horizon.

Beyond pen and paper, Alyson’s guiding hand reached out to engage, encourage, and mentor Africa Program staff, SVNP scholars, and Stafford Capacity Building interns.

Her significant contribution as a liaison played a key role in Africa Program’s success—both in the United States and on the continent. Her dedication, initiative, and insight nourished the bond between the Wilson Center and the U.S. Department of State. Furthermore, Alyson’s knowledge, passion, and fortitude aided several scholars during their delicate travel processes.

We are thankful for how Alyson brought over 31 years of experience and expertise to the Africa Program. With the U.S. Department of State, she is a senior Foreign Service Officer with the rank of Minister-Counselor. The Yale University graduate also served as Deputy Chief of Mission and Chargé at the U.S. Embassy in Monrovia, Liberia from 2018 to 2021, leading the U.S. Mission’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to her tenure with the Africa Program, Alyson served on a task force at the State Department related to evacuation of individuals in Afghanistan who have been associated with U.S. exchange programs and organizations. We encourage you to learn more of Alyson’s long list of achievements in her full biography.

We congratulate Alyson as she moves on to her next assignment as the Deputy Chief of Mission for the U.S. Embassy in Kosovo.

The Africa Program thanks Alyson for her service and commitment to the mission of the Wilson Center and Africa Program during her tenure. We wish her the best in all of her future endeavors.

Image removed.

Image removed.

Contributor

Alyson Grunder

Alyson Grunder

Former Associate Director, Africa Program and Senior Diplomatic Fellow, State Department;
Senior Foreign Service Officer, U.S. Department of State; former Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy Monrovia, Liberia; former Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, US Department of State
Read More

Africa Program

The Africa Program works to address the most critical issues facing Africa and U.S.-Africa relations, build mutually beneficial U.S.-Africa relations, and enhance knowledge and understanding about Africa in the United States. The Program achieves its mission through in-depth research and analyses, including our Africa Up Close blog, public discussion, working groups, and briefings that bring together policymakers, practitioners, and subject matter experts to analyze and offer practical options for tackling key challenges in Africa and in U.S.-Africa relations.    Read more