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Dr. Jim Barnhart is the Assistant to the Administrator in the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID’s) Bureau for Resilience and Food Security, as well as the Deputy Coordinator for Development for Feed the Future, the U.S. Government’s global hunger and food security initiative. In this dual role, Dr. Barnhart coordinates the implementation of Feed the Future across the U.S. Government, oversees its execution, reports on results, and leads engagement with the external community to ensure that food security remains high on the development agenda. He also oversees USAID’s technical and regional expertise focused on improving agriculture-led growth, resilience, nutrition and water security, sanitation and hygiene.
Most recently, Dr. Barnhart served as Mission Director for USAID/Jordan (2015-2020). Prior to that, he oversaw the former USAID Bureau for Food Security’s research and policy divisions, its engagement with the private sector, food security-related communications and outreach, and overall operations.
Dr. Barnhart has previously served as Mission Director for USAID/Albania (2012-2014) and USAID/Lebanon (2010-2012). He was Associate Mission Director for Economic Growth and Education and the Acting Economic Growth Office Director in Pakistan. His earlier overseas assignments include Zambia and Jordan, supervising economic growth, agriculture, education, and democracy and governance programs.
Before joining USAID, Dr. Barnhart worked in Egypt and the West Bank/Gaza, supporting programs for educational and economic development. He coordinated activities for an American NGO that operated in Armenia, Turkey, and Jerusalem. He traveled throughout the Middle East, including Syria and Oman, and studied Arabic in Damascus and at Bir Zeit University outside of Ramallah.
Dr. Barnhart earned his Ph.D. in Economics from Georgia State University, a Master’s Degree in International Economics from Johns Hopkins University (SAIS), and received his B.A. degree from Furman University.