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Date Published: 12/14/10

Rosa Whitaker Selected Among Foreign Policy Magazine’s “Top 100 Global Thinkers of 2010”


WASHINGTON, D.C., -- Foreign Policy (FP) Magazine has selected Rosa Whitaker, President and CEO of The Whitaker Group (TWG) , as one of its “Top 100 Global Thinkers of 2010.” Ms. Whitaker was recognized alongside the British investor, Miles Morland, for her longstanding vision of Africa “as the land of opportunity.”

FP’s second annual list offers “a portrait of 2010’s global marketplace of ideas and the thinkers who make them.” FP lauded Ms. Whitaker’s contributions to transforming the global perception of Africa from a cause for charity to one of promising opportunity for economic investment. Facilitating this transformation has been the foundation of Ms. Whitaker’s career.

Ms. Whitaker was honored to be on FP’s distinguished list with luminaries like Bill Gates, Robert Zoellick, Bill and Hillary Clinton, President Barack Obama and President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia.

“I feel privileged to have been able to contribute to the extraordinary economic growth experienced by Africa over the past 15 years,” Whitaker said. “Since the beginning of the global economic recession, Africa’s continuing economic health shows that this growth is a part of a new and sustainable reality. While honored and humbled to be included in such eminent company, I believe the honor belongs to Africa, where so many are working so hard to achieve prosperity.”

Before founding TWG, Ms. Whitaker served as the first ever Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Africa in the administrations of Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. She was the lead U.S. negotiator for trade agreements with African countries and a hands-on architect of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). AGOA has facilitated the creation of hundreds of thousands of African jobs and helped increase African exports to the U.S. by over 300%.

Thanks to Ms. Whitaker and her early, well-defined vision of African prosperity through increased trade and business capacity, says FP, Africa’s economic rise is now “conventional wisdom.” In early 2010, World Bank Africa Chief Economist Shanta Devarajan announced, "We could be at the beginning of what history will describe as Africa’s decade."

Under Ms. Whitaker’s leadership, TWG is widely recognized as the leading strategic consulting firm for global companies seeking investment and business engagement in Africa. In just seven years, TWG has facilitated over $1 billion in trade and capital flows to the region.


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