Vivian Lowery Derryck, MIA, Vice ChairFounder and President Emerita, The Bridges Institute, Washington, DC
Vivian Lowery Derryck is Founder and President Emerita of The Bridges Institute, a nonprofit she launched to help strengthen African governance and democracy through social development projects. She began this organization when she was an Inaugural Fellow at the Advanced Leadership Initiative at Harvard University in 2009. Prior to her year at Harvard, she was Senior Vice President and Director of Public–Private Partnerships at the Academy for Educational Development. Previously, she served as the Assistant Administrator for Africa at the U.S. Agency for International Development, where she was the senior government official directing foreign assistance to Africa.
For decades, Ms. Derryck has focused on promoting sustainable development in education, political participation, conflict resolution, leadership development and women’s leadership in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean. A veteran foreign affairs specialist, she has held numerous positions in both government and the nonprofit private sectors. These include Deputy Assistant Secretary at the U.S. Department of State, Executive Vice President of the National Council of Negro Women, Vice President of the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, President of the African-American Institute and Senior Advisor of the Africa Leadership Forum. Ms. Derryck also taught at New York Technical College and the University of Liberia.
Ms. Derryck is listed in Who’s Who and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Bretton Woods Committee. She serves on several nonprofit boards and commissions, including the Jane Goodall Institute and the DC Mayor’s Commission on African American Affairs, and she is Chair of the Advisory Board of Femmes/Afrique/Solidarite and Global Rights. Ms. Derryck has received numerous awards, including the Guggenheim Humanitarian Award and the Martin Luther King Service Award. She was named a 2011 Purpose Prize Fellow, and in 2015, she received the African Woman of Excellence Award from the African Union.
Ms. Derryck received a bachelor’s degree from Chatham College, a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University, a certificate in Advanced Leadership from Harvard University and an honorary doctorate from Chatham University.
Ms. Derryck joined the FHI 360 Board of Directors in 2013 and is its Vice Chair.