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US to Ethiopia and Kenya
Nov 7 - 19 2019
ACYPL had the privilege this November of sending a delegation of seven rising political leaders to Ethiopia and Kenya – our first ever delegation to Ethiopia. Working with our partners at the Hanns Seidel Foundation, ACYPL was proud to have selected a diverse, bipartisan delegation that is reflective of our nation’s future political leaders. The delegation consisted of members of the private sector, elected officials, a municipal government employee, and a judge.
The exchange began in Washington, DC. There the delegates had the opportunity to meet with representatives of the State Department and learn about the political, economic, and socio-cultural challenges and opportunities in both countries. Before their departure, the delegates were treated to a meeting at the Embassy of Ethiopia, where they were able to learn about the country’s history and the US-Ethiopian bilateral relationship.
While in Ethiopia the delegates were welcomed by the US Embassy in Addis Ababa and US Ambassador Michael Raynor and attended a reception honoring Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser. Later, the delegates visited ICE Addis, a business incubator that works to develop Ethiopia’s tech industry. At this meeting, the delegates participated in a “policy hackathon,” where ICE Addis staff technologically simulated the impacts of various policy changes, demonstrating the growing importance of technology in the political realm. The delegation also toured the headquarters of the African Union, where they learned about the organization’s role in promoting economic growth and development throughout the African continent.
In Kenya, the delegates had exceedingly productive meetings with leaders at various levels of the Kenyan government. The delegates met with two members of Kenya’s National Assembly, one from Kenya’s governing party and one from the main opposition coalition. They also attended a meeting of the Council of Governors, the main organization for the leaders of Kenya’s 47 counties and drew fruitful comparisons between the organization and the National Governor’s Association in the United States.
While in Ethiopia the group visited the National Museum of Ethiopia, the Grand Palace and the Shiromeda Market. A memorable experience for the delegates in Kenya was a visit to Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, where the delegates had the opportunity to learn about conservation in Kenya.