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State Letter #09-22

Introduction of Eskinder Negash

Published: June 26, 2009
Types:
State Letter
Tags:
director

TO: STATE REFUGEE COORDINATORS
NATIONAL VOLUNTARY AGENCIES
MUTUAL ASSISTANCE ASSOCIATIONS
ORR SERVICE PROVIDERS

FROM: Eskinder Negash
Director
Office of Refugee Resettlement

SUBJECT: Introduction of Eskinder Negash

Thank you for your warm welcome and kind words as I transitioned to the Office of Refugee Resettlement. It is humbling to be here as the Director of ORR. As many of you know, I have been part of the refugee and immigrant world for over three decades, starting with my own journey to the U.S. as a refugee at a young age, then as a professional assisting other refugees and immigrants start a new life in our country. Thus, my commitment to refugees, immigrants, and other vulnerable populations is very personal. And it is with this passion that I will lead ORR to best serve refugees, victims of trafficking, unaccompanied alien children and other populations in our mandate.

Since its establishment by the Refugee Act of 1980, ORR has evolved from a refugee resettlement program to a Federal office responsible for serving a wide range of vulnerable populations, including victims of trafficking, unaccompanied alien children, U.S. repatriates, survivors of torture and others. I believe that such diversification within ORR strengthens our commitment to vulnerable populations in the United States and offers an opportunity to work efficiently and strategically to assist those in need.

Amidst the current economic situation, I am aware that the needs are great and resources limited. However, in my 30 years of service to refugees and immigrants in the United States and abroad, I have seen firsthand the impact a dedicated community of people can have on the lives of vulnerable children and families as result of creative thinking and innovative programming. Thus, as I begin my second week as the Director of ORR, I commit to working with you and ORR’s dedicated and talented staff to identify creative solutions and consider new perspectives in addressing the challenges we face. With the support of the Administration and the leadership at the Administration for Children and Families, I am certain that we will bring hope and a better future to some of the most vulnerable populations in our country.

I look forward to working with you and in strengthening our partnerships to meet the needs of refugees, victims of trafficking, vulnerable children and others we serve.