09.10.14

Chairwoman Stabenow Receives McGovern-Dole Leadership Award for Efforts in Fighting Global Hunger

Vice President Joe Biden Presents World Food Program USA’s Highest Honor to Stabenow who joins Prestigious Group of Past Awardees Including Gates, Dole, Clinton, Buffett

Senator Debbie Stabenow, Chairwoman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, today received the World Food Program USA’s prestigious McGovern-Dole Leadership Award for her efforts and achievements in fighting global hunger. The award, presented to Stabenow by Vice President Joe Biden, specifically honors Stabenow’s work in bringing Democrats and Republicans together to pass the 2014 Farm Bill, which makes significant contributions to alleviate worldwide hunger and provide aid in crisis regions across the world. Stabenow’s leadership on the Farm Bill made critical reforms to international aid programs, making the fight against global hunger a major priority.

“This award means so much to me because I know the World Food Program travels to the ends of the earth – literally – to deliver food and supplies to men, women and children. Deliveries that may be the difference between life and death,” Stabenow said. “As Americans, we are compelled to help alleviate global hunger because it’s simply the right thing to do. It’s also the smart thing to do. International aid is more than a band-aid – it’s a building block to create stronger economies around the world. Food security is a stabilizing force in destabilized regions. By fighting global hunger and strengthening local agricultural economies, we are enhancing global security.”

Stabenow continued, “I am proud of our efforts in the Farm Bill and I am honored to receive this prestigious award.”

Stabenow’s leadership in crafting and negotiating the 2014 Farm Bill emphasized reforms to international aid programs, providing aid partners with flexibility to deliver resources to international crisis and conflict zones more efficiently. Because of these efforts, the bill has received widespread support and praise from hunger and international aid organizations. The reforms are seen as taking a major step forward in strengthening the nation’s commitment to providing relief in hostile regions – helping to stem famine and in many cases an escalation of regional conflict and tension.

 “A new program established by Senator Stabenow – just a few words of text in the bill – will have a transformative impact,” said Rick Leach, President and CEO of World Food Program USA. “Now we can buy food from small-scale farmers, who often suffer from hunger, to feed children in school. Through this effort, we can lift the first group out of hunger and extreme poverty while providing hope and opportunity for the second.”

The McGovern-Dole Leadership Award recognizes leaders who have played a critical role in addressing and helping to solve global hunger and has been awarded in the past to Microsoft Founder and philanthropist Bill Gates, former Senator Bob Dole, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, businessman and philanthropist Howard Buffett, Representative Jim McGovern, and recording artist Christina Aguilera.

The 2014 Farm Bill, and its international aid programs, was signed into law by the President in February.