Ambassador Van Vranken’s Remarks at USAID DAA Maria Price Detherage Reception

August 10, 2023

As prepared for delivery

Good evening and welcome!

I would like to recognize the following senior officials here with us tonight:
Honorable Setlhabelo Modukanele – SiT-Abelo MoH-do-kaH-neh-leH – Assistant Minister of Local Government and Rural Development
USAID Deputy Assistant Administrator for Africa – Maria Price Detherage
Mr. Thato Raphaka – Tah-toh Rah-pah-ka – Permanent Secretary Ministry of Environment and Tourism
Ms. Malebogo Morakaladi – MaH-leh-bo-goh Moh-raH-Ka-lah-dee – Permanent Secretary Ministry of Trade and Industry
Mr. Boniface Mphetlhe – Boniface Mm-pear-teh – Secretary of Budget, Ministry of Finance
Dr. Josephine Namboze – Josephine Nam-boh-zay – Country Representative, World Health Organization
Mr. Etienne de Souza – Etienne de Sue-zah – Officer-in-Charge, UNDP
Senior officials of the Government of Botswana, heads of International Organizations and Implementing partners, representatives of the civil society, distinguished ladies and gentlemen, with all protocol observed, dumelang!

You are all key in forging the strong relationship between the United States and Botswana, and you honor us with your presence here tonight. I would like to welcome USAID Deputy Assistant Administrator for Africa Maria Price Detherage to Botswana. As Deputy Assistant Administrator for Africa, she has executive level oversight for USAID programs in the Southern Africa region and most importantly Botswana. Maria has an extensive and impressive career in public service and is a career member of the Senior Executive service. She
prides herself in humbly serving to bring out the best in people and programs. In her role, she oversees some of USAID’s most complex programs.

Maria is visiting several countries in the region to oversee programs, engage with USAID and interagency staff, and strengthen diplomatic ties. Earlier today, Maria and I had a chance to visit Organic Fertilizer Manufacturers Botswana, an innovative local company that is supported by the USAID Africa Trade and Investment program. They are one of eight local corporations bolstered by USAID’s support under the Africa Trade and Investment program. One of many USAID programs in support of Botswana’s development objectives.

Tonight, is an opportunity to meet Maria, develop new partnerships, and strengthen current ties. Thank you all for joining us this evening and welcome again. Please, enjoy yourselves. I now invite Deputy Assistant Administrator Maria Price Detherage to say a few words.