Grameen Foundation USA Appoints Microfinance Trailblazer to Head Programs

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Grameen Foundation USA (GFUSA) today announced the appointment of Deborah Burand as its new executive vice president for programs.

Grameen Foundation USA (GFUSA) today announced the appointment of Deborah Burand as its new executive vice president for programs. A widely-respected microfinance trailblazer and lawyer, Burand will oversee GFUSA’s Grameen Technology Center, Capital Markets Group and program operations.

“This is a time of tremendous growth for GFUSA as we scale up our activities to meet the enormous challenges posed by global poverty. Deborah’s unique talent and diverse experience in both the public and private sectors make her the right person to lead our expansion, and we are excited to have her on board,” said Alex Counts, GFUSA’s president and CEO.

GFUSA is at the forefront of using microfinance, technology, capital markets financing strategies, and other pioneering initiatives in the fight against global poverty. Through the Grameen Technology Center, it develops technology solutions to increase the efficiency of microfinance institutions and to create business opportunities for poor microfinance clients. The Capital Markets Group taps new financing opportunities for poverty-focused microfinance institutions around the world.

“I am delighted to have this opportunity to help advance GFUSA’s mission in the world. GFUSA pairs a world-changing mission with a cadre of professionals who bring an extraordinary combination of talent and dedication to their work,” said Burand.

Burand is a co-founder and president of Women Advancing Microfinance International (WAM International). She currently serves on the board of Microfinance Opportunities and on the investment committee of the Global Commercial Microfinance Consortium, a $75 million microfinance investment fund managed by Deutsche Bank.

She previously worked at FINCA International where she held several positions between 2001 and 2004, before leaving to become an independent consultant. In her last role at FINCA, she launched its Capital Markets Department. Before entering the microfinance industry, Burand held senior positions at the U.S. Federal Reserve Board and the U.S. Treasury Department, and also worked as an international corporate attorney at the New York office of the global law firm, Shearman & Sterling.

In addition to teaching periodically as an adjunct law professor at Georgetown University Law Center, Burand has also lectured at various U.S. universities and international training institutes. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and is a former international affairs fellow of the Council. Burand holds a joint graduate degree from Georgetown University, combining a law degree with a master’s degree from the School of Foreign Service, and is also a graduate of DePauw University in Indiana.

About Grameen Foundation USA

Grameen Foundation USA (GFUSA) is a global non-profit organization that combines microfinance, technology, and innovation to empower the world's poorest people to escape poverty. Founded in 1997, GFUSA has established a global network of 52 partners in 22 countries that has impacted an estimated 7 million lives in Asia, Africa, the Americas, and the Middle East.

The Foundation sprang from the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh. Grameen Bank was started in 1976 by an economics professor, Dr. Muhammad Yunus, who was convinced that women could break through poverty by taking tiny loans to start or expand tiny businesses. Today, Grameen Bank serves nearly 5 million borrowers. As strategic global partners, GFUSA and Grameen Bank share a common vision, knowledge and success models to accelerate the microfinance industry's impact on the world's poorest people. Dr. Yunus, the founder and director of Grameen Bank, is a founding and current board member of GFUSA. For more information on Grameen Foundation USA, please visit http://www.gfusa.org.

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