The Cable

Arnold to lead the Asia Foundation

The Asia Foundation has selected David Arnold to be its next president and CEO, replacing outgoing president Douglas Bereuter, a former congressman from Nebraska. Arnold, who is currently the president of the American University in Cairo, will come back to the United States and assume his new post in January. Bereuter steps down at the ...

The Asia Foundation has selected David Arnold to be its next president and CEO, replacing outgoing president Douglas Bereuter, a former congressman from Nebraska.

Arnold, who is currently the president of the American University in Cairo, will come back to the United States and assume his new post in January. Bereuter steps down at the end of September. Since coming to AUC in 2003, Arnold oversaw the university’s move from its downtown campus and the construction of a new $400 million campus outside the city. He previously was the Ford Foundation’s first representative in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.

"In some ways, this feels like coming home to me," Arnold told The Cable in an interview from Cairo, explaining that he spent the bulk of his professional life dealing with governance, civil society, women’s empowerment, and post-conflict resolution in Asia. "It feels like a natural progression."

Still, his recent work in the Middle East will factor into his new role, as he seeks to incorporate work in the two regions where appropriate. "There are a lot of common threads," he said.

Arnold will be based in San Francisco, where the foundation is headquartered, but expects to travel frequently to Washington, New York, and the foundation’s 18 other offices spread throughout the region. That will also let him spend more time with his three daughters and six grandchildren, who are based in San Francisco and New York.

As for who will replace Arnold at AUC, that’s still being decided. A search committee led by former U.S. Ambassador to Egypt and India Frank Wisner has begun its work. AUC is a private institution, it should be noted, and is not affiliated with the U.S. government, though it has had close ties to the United States since its1919 founding by the American missionary Charles A. Watson.

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