Jonathan Stivers was appointed to the Commission by House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi for a term expiring on December 31, 2018. Commissioner Stivers has more than two decades of experience in the Executive and Legislative Branches focusing on foreign policy including U.S-China relations, Asian Affairs, trade, global economics and finance, development, global health, and democracy and human rights.
In the Obama Administration, Commissioner Stivers served as the Assistant Administrator for the Bureau for Asia at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). In this Senate-confirmed position he managed a budget of approximately $1.2 billion in foreign assistance and led a staff of approximately 1,200 development professionals in 32 countries in East Asia and the Pacific Islands, South Asia and Central Asia. He testified before Congressional committees on almost two dozen occasions on topics such as the Asia-Pacific Rebalance policy, annual budget requests, the democratic transition in Burma, earthquake recovery in Nepal, democracy and human rights in Southeast Asia, and sustainable development and property rights in the Philippines and Cambodia.
During his time in the Administration Commissioner Stivers led USAID efforts to promote democratic reform in Burma including the U.S. serving as the lead donor for the 2015 election paving the way for the first democratic government in over 50 years. Other actions included developing the plan to support earthquake recovery and reconstruction in Nepal, leading the effort to create an innovative anti-human trafficking program in Southeast Asia, designing a strategic plan to support new democratic reform in Sri Lanka, and helping to heal wounds of the past in Vietnam and Laos through development initiatives. He also participated in high-level dialogues including the U.S.-India Strategic & Commercial Dialogue in New Delhi and the U.S.-China Development Cooperation Dialogue in Beijing.
In the U.S. Congress, Commissioner Stivers served as Senior Advisor to the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives and Democratic Leader Pelosi. He played a leadership role on numerous foreign policy initiatives related to trade, global health, development and human rights. He played a key role in advancing legislation that provided historic increases in global health funding, securing emergency relief after the Haiti earthquake, passing the JADE Act that tightened sanctions on the Burmese government and passing the Currency Reform Act in the House of Representatives.
While serving in the Democratic Leadership, he was responsible for the operations of the Steering & Policy Committee including all committee assignments and appointments. He also worked on the House floor to help count votes and build support on major legislation including the Affordable Care Act, Wall Street Reform, the War in Iraq, and annual budget and appropriations legislation.
Commissioner Stivers also served as Senior Legislative Assistant to the Ranking Member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Foreign Operations and in the Office of the Democratic Whip. In these positions, he wrote and negotiated foreign policy provisions in the annual appropriations legislation and gained expertise in parliamentary procedure, communications, and member services.
Commissioner Stivers earned a Masters of International Policy and Practice from The Elliott School of International Affairs at The George Washington University in Asian Affairs and a Bachelor of Arts from James Madison College at Michigan State University in International Relations.
Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Commissioner Stivers currently resides in Washington, D.C. with his wife and two daughters.