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Name: Shah, Rajiv
Current Position: Former Administrator

Chosen by President Barack Obama to rebuild the dwindling (both in terms of size and reputation) U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is Rajiv Shah, a doctor and researcher formerly with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He was confirmed by the Senate December 24, 2009, and sworn in a week later.

Born on March 9, 1973, to Indian immigrants who settled in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Shah grew up in the Detroit area and attended Groves High School in Beverly Hills, where he was an award-winning debater. His father, Janardan Shah, worked for Ford Motor Company and his mother, Rena Shah, ran a Montessori school.
Shah earned a B.S.E. in economics at the University of Michigan in 1995. At the University of Pennsylvania, in 2002, he gained an M.B.A. from the Wharton and an M.D from the medical school.
Shah’s early career included serving as a policy aide in the British Parliament and working for the World Health Organization in southern India. He co-founded a consulting firm, Health Systems Analytics, which he later sold, and in 1995 he and his future wife, Shivam Mallick, co-founded a non-profit, Project IMPACT for South Asian Americans. 
His involvement in American politics began with serving on the transition team of Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell (D) and helping with Al Gore’s health care policy during the 2000 presidential campaign.
He then joined the Gates Foundation as Deputy Director for Policy and Finance, managing the foundation’s $1.5 billion commitment to the Vaccine Fund and helping create the International Finance Facility for Immunization. Later, he was the Gates Foundation’s first Director for Financial Services to the Poor, leading the Strategic Opportunities initiative. His last duty at the foundation was serving as Director for Agricultural Development, during which he created and managed a multi-billion dollar portfolio of grants and investments to help rural economies throughout the developing world. He led efforts to create the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, helped recruit its leadership, including UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, and served on its board of directors.
After spending seven years at the foundation, Shah joined the Obama administration in June 2009 as Under Secretary for Research, Education and Economics and chief scientist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In this capacity, he managed the Agricultural Research Service, the Economic Research Service, and the National Agricultural Statistical Service. He also led USDA’s participation in President Obama’s global food security initiative, and launched the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, a new scientific institute created to elevate and enhance the capacity of agricultural research to address sustainable food production, climate change, bioenergy and human nutrition.
Shah has served on the boards of the Seattle Public Library, the Seattle Community College District, and City Year Seattle.
Shah and his wife, Shivam, were married in May 2000, after he flew to India for one day to propose to her at the Taj Mahal. The couple has a son and a daughter.
Rajiv Shah (WhoRunsGov)
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