Raj Shah performed admirably at USAID: White House

The US has hailed highest ranking Indian American in the Obama Administration, Raj Shah - who quit recently as Administrator of the country's global development agency - for his admirable work in the face of adversity.

AFP| Last Updated: Feb 28, 2015, 06:52 AM IST

Washington: The US has hailed highest ranking Indian American in the Obama Administration, Raj Shah - who quit recently as Administrator of the country's global development agency - for his admirable work in the face of adversity.

"Administrator Shah is somebody who performed admirably under very difficult circumstances," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said yesterday.

Shah left United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as its administrator last week, a position he held for five years.
"You'll recall that he was thrust into that job in the immediate aftermath of the terrible earthquake in Haiti. And since then, he has been dogged in representing US interests around the globe, and trying to meet the needs of people around the globe who are in terrible circumstances," Earnest said.

"He is somebody who drew on this own professionalism and leadership, and own expertise, he was a medical doctor, as you know. And he used those skills and that training to great effect," he said.

Shah developed partnership for joint collaboration with India to carry out humanitarian work in African countries.

"He certainly is somebody who led the agency at USAID extremely well, and we certainly are sorry to see him leave the administration. But my guess is that, at least for all of us in this room, it's not the last time we've heard of Raj Shah," Earnest said.

Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, to immigrant parents from Gujarat who settled there in the late 1960s, Shah grew up with his sister in the metro Detroit suburb.

He earned his MD from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and MSc in Health Economics at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.