The United States Africa Leaders Summit creates a historic opportunity for U.S.-Africa partnerships.
By Adoria Doucette
This month was possibly the most important moment in the history of modern Africa. For the first time ever, the leaders of the African continent were guests of a United States president, at the United States Africa Leaders Summit, for the sole purpose of forging partnerships that will catapult the African economy. As the second largest continent, America’s partnership with Africa will fuel new global prosperity . The summit involved the U.S. government committing close to $50 billion to fund and empower hundreds of organizations and initiatives to strengthen and optimize trade, health, security and infrastructure.
The three day summit on August 4-6 was President Barack Obama’s supreme triumph. First Lady Michelle Obama, former President George W. Bush and former First Lady Laura Bush hosted first ladies from 30 African nations in a symposium of stakeholders from across the continent, highlighting recent successes in improving health across Africa, and announcing the U.S.’s expansion of funding and assistance towards health and women’s education. Former President Bill Clinton hosted a panel of global business executives on “Expanding Opportunities: The New Era for Business in Africa”.
“Tonight, we are making history, and it’s an honor to have all of you here,” Obama said. “I stand before you as the President of the United States, a proud American. But I also stand before you as the son of a man from Africa. … And so I propose a toast to the new Africa. The Africa that is rising and so full of promise and to our shared task to keep on working for the peace and prosperity and justice that all our people seek and that all our people so richly deserve.”
Africa has an integral role in shaping the future global economic and cultural order, as it has for millennia. The execution and success of this newly invigorated continental partnership relies upon Americans being properly informed since the next phase of the African cultural and business boom will be determined by partnerships with American citizens. The U.S. must become Africa’s largest trading partner within the next five years. The combination of our values and entrepreneurial vigor are the perfect match for the challenges and opportunities within the hundreds of growing cities across 54 nations on the African continent.
The list of U.S. initiatives across Africa is comprehensive and breathtaking and we all need to be informed of the accomplishments of the summit. Historic projects were announced in health, environmentalism, energy, construction, peacekeeping, gender equality, human rights, organic agriculture, and youth empowerment. I was honored to be on the hosting committee for the U.S.-Africa Power Brokers reception hosted by Jean Marie Coulbary, who specializes in orchestrating successful communications, governments and businesses in Africa and the U.S. The exciting event was filled with the productive energy of collaboration from government, business, culture and NGO’s across the world.
Power Source is an insider’s view of power networks and activities that contribute to the continued dominance of our nation’s ideals, institutions and individuals. Ms. Doucette has privately orchestrated projects for the world’s most influential individuals, celebrated personalities, and corporations. Based in Washington D.C., Ms. Doucette is a proud native of New Orleans, Louisiana. She can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org