I began my career as one of the first Peace Corps volunteers in Kenya. This led to many other jobs in international development, including joining the board of directors and now serving as board chair of International Relief and Development. The organization The Post portrayed in the May 5 front-page article “Big budgets, little oversight in war zones” is not the one I know.
IRD’s hallmark is to go wherever there is a need, conduct thoughtful assessments and support communities in prioritizing and leading their own development initiatives. I have witnessed the enduring achievements made possible by IRD in places such as Cambodia, Laos and Ethiopia.
With the board’s support, the executive management team has transformed IRD from a small start-up into one of the world’s premier development organizations. This is a source of pride for IRD employees on the ground, who willingly risk their lives and endure countless hardships to make a difference in vulnerable communities in need.
Roland H. Johnson, Philadelphia
The writer is chairman of the board of directors of International Relief and Development.