THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
While nearly every agency and
section of our embassy worked
on health programs, it did not
necessarilymean that they were
always in sync.
Marum, both M.D.s, set the example for what became a truly col-
laborative undertaking for the entire embassy. PEPFAR Coordi-
nator Kristie Mikus ensured that this practice of collaboration
ricocheted through the rest of the interagency health engagement.
A Public Diplomacy Bonanza
America’s public health programming is a uniquely good
story reflecting the generosity and technical virtuosity of the
American people. Because our health programming occurred
throughout Zambia, it gave me opportunities to travel to remote
locations, meet and engage local leaders and, with our creative
public diplomacy team, craft a steady stream of positive press.
Our health programs also attracted very high-profile VIP
visits. Former President George W. Bush visited three times,
including for the December 2011 global launch of the Pink Rib-
bon Red Ribbon initiative to combat cervical cancer. The PRRR
partnership continues to this day as an innovative public-private
partnership. Former President Bill Clinton visited Zambia on
Clinton Foundation business, while former Millennium Chal-
lenge Corporation Chief Executive Officer Daniel Yohannes
arrived in May 2012 to sign our MCC compact dedicated to
boosting economic productivity by reducing waterborne dis-
eases. Bill Gates monitored Gates Foundation projects, and U.S.
Global AIDS Coordinator Deborah Birx came to help refurbish
and inaugurate a clinic in Livingstone. Senior congressional
staff delegations came to study our maternal and child health
programs. Each visit was another opportunity to underline the
commitment of the American people to Zambia and the positive
outcomes of our joint collaboration on health.