CCEFA Profile: Rep. Laura Richardson

See below for our latest Congressional Caucus for Effective Foreign Assistance (CCEFA) profile of the Congresswoman from California, Laura Richardson. To read about other CCEFA Members we’ve profiled, click here.

Laura Richardson (D)

District: California’s 37th


  • Committee on Homeland Security
    • Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies
    • Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications (Ranking Member)
  • Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
    • Highways and Transit
    • Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials
    • Water Resources and Environment

Congresswoman Richardson’s past experience with development has focused on cosponsoring legislation that targets women’s empowerment and health. She cosponsored the Global Resources and Opportunities for Women to Thrive Act of 2007 or GROWTH Act, which targets assistance for women in developing countries with respect to microenterprises, small and medium enterprises, private property rights and land tenure security, employment access, trade benefits, exchanges with U.S. entrepreneurs, Millennium Challenge Account assistance, and indigenous women’s organizations. This act would direct the Secretary of State to establish the Global Resources and Opportunities for Women to Thrive (GROWTH) Fund to enhance economic opportunities for very poor, poor, and low-income women in developing countries with a focus on increasing women-owned enterprise development, property rights, access to financial services,  leadership in implementing organizations—such as indigenous nongovernmental organizations, community-based organizations, and regulated financial intermediaries—improving women’s employment benefits and conditions, and increasing women’s ability to benefit from global trade. This act is very much in line with the mission of the State Department’s Global Office of Women’s Issues, headed by Ambassador-at-Large Melanne Verveer, and USAID’s new Office of Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment, led by Carla Koppell.

She also cosponsored H. Res. 1022 which affirms the House of Representatives’ commitment to promoting maternal health and child survival at home and abroad through greater international investment and participation. It recognizes maternal health and child survival as fundamental to the well-being of families and societies and its impact on global development and prosperity.

Additionally, Rep. Richardson embraced the principle of country ownership by cosponsoring  H. Res. 1230, which not only condemns the campaign of violence and harassment in Zimbabwe, but calls on the political parties to commit to forming a government that reflects the will of the Zimbabwean people and promotes national unity. H. Res. 1230 also leverages multilateral channels by urging the international community—under the leadership of the United Nations, the African Union (AU), and the Southern African Development Community (SADC)—to deploy monitors to ensure that the presidential runoff election reflects the will of the Zimbabwean people.


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