Friday afternoon, Diana Putman vowed to protect the constitution of the United States against all enemies as she accepted her new assignment as the Mission Director for the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Previously, Diana served as the Humanitarian and Health Activities Branch Chief at the U.S. Africa Command, where she has served since August 2008. Before that, Diana served in Tunisia (3 years), Tanzania (5 years), and at the regional mission in Kenya (6 years) as Director of the Office of Food Security which designed and managed regional programs in 23 countries with a focus on agriculture, trade and food security.
She conducted much of her doctoral research in Mali, Rwanda and Somalia and in Japan, Diana conducted post-doctoral research on women and gender differences with Fulbright and National Science Foundation Support in the 1990’s. In June 2010, she was awarded the American Foreign Service Association’s William R. Rivkin Award for Constructive Dissent for her efforts to provide counseling and rehabilitation for victims of sexual and gender-based violence.
With 3 degrees in Anthropology from Bryn Mawr College, a Masters in Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College, and studies at the Université de Grenoble in France, Diana has received multiple Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards from USAID, the Secretary of State’s Group Award for Heroism after the bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Tanzania, and the Praxis Award from the Washington Association of Professional Anthropologists.
The long list of accomplishments, achievements and accolades goes on for a bit, but you get the picture.
What you missed from Friday’s ceremony: Diana’s family looking on with pride. Most notably, Warren Putman, Diana’s father, who was recognized during the ceremony for his own service with USAID as a livestock and agricultural specialist—starting in March of 1962! —only five months after USAID was created.