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Meet the Experts

Brooke Stearns Lawson

Senior Conflict and Organized Crime Advisor, USAID

Brooke Stearns Lawson, a Senior Conflict and Crime Advisor with USAID’s Africa Bureau (USAID/AFR), provides technical assistance, program management, and policy guidance on a wide range of conflict and governance issues.  Her work focuses on conflict in Southern and West Africa, transnational organized crime (including drug and wildlife trafficking), non-state armed groups such as the Lord’s Resistance Army, and political economy assessment (PEA).  Prior to joining USAID, Brooke was a Doctoral Fellow at the RAND Corporation where her work focused on the intersection of development and security.

Brooke has more than fifteen years work experience in international development, relief, and reconstruction.  She earned a PhD in policy analysis from the Pardee RAND Graduate School and a masters degree in international relations from Institut d’Etudes Politiques (Sciences Po).  She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and was a 2009 White House Fellows Regional Finalist, founding member of the Rotary Club of Dupont Circle, 2003-2005 Rotary World Peace Scholar, and 2001 Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar.

Originally from Montana, Brooke loves outdoor sports, particularly downhill and water skiing and beach volleyball, and is a proud aunt of seven.

Recent publications

  • Stearns Lawson, Brooke and Phyllis Dininio.  The Development Response to Drug Trafficking in Africa: A Programming Guide.  USAID, April 2013.

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