Washington, DC — The passing of Howard Wolpe is met with great regret and deep sadness at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.
Howard was a true friend and colleague to the Wilson Center, serving as Director of its Africa Program and the Project on Leadership and Building State Capacity from2002-2009. As a Wilson Center Program Director, as in the many other roles he performed so ably – Michigan State Legislator, seven-term Member of the House of Representatives, and U.S. Representative to the Great Lakes Region of Africa under Presidents Clinton and Obama – Howard epitomized public service and labored in the cause of peace with endless energy and dedication.
His commitment toad involvement in Africa, which grew out of a two-year residency in Nigeria, where he did his doctoral research, lasted over 45 years. During that time, he brought to the Wilson Center a remarkable and unique program to rebuild trust, foster collaboration and cohesion in post-conflict leadership in countries like Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Liberia. Working closely with leaders from all sides of the political, ethnic and regional spectrum in those countries, in close consultation with the international community and United Nations, he served as a catalyst to advance the peace processes there.
Steve McDonald,the current Director of the Africa Program at the Center and a close colleague of Howard for the last 30 years, stated, "There has been no greater advocate for peace or friend of Africa in the United States than Howard. He will be sorely missed by hundreds of Africa leaders, campaigners for peace and justice, and everyone who came into contact with this warm and caring human being."
Notes to Editors:
The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars provides a strictly nonpartisan space for the worlds of policy making and scholarship to interact. By conducting relevant and timely research and promoting dialogue from all perspectives, it works to address the critical current and emerging challenges confronting the United States and the world.