About Us

Ambassador Sally Shelton-Colby, MA

Ambassador Sally Shelton-Colby is a professor of U.S. foreign policy and world politics at American University. She has also held a number of senior positions in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, including as the Deputy Secretary-General of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development; Assistant Administrator of the Bureau for Global Programs at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID); U.S. Ambassador to Grenada, Barbados, and several other Eastern Caribbean nations; vice president of Bankers Trust Co.; and, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Latin America and the Caribbean. Most recently she developed and ran a transparency and accountability project in Mexico City for USAID and the Government of Mexico.

She has served on a number of for- and non-profit boards of directors, including Valero Energy Corporation, Baring Puma Fund, Helen Keller International, the National Endowment for Democracy, the International Planned Parenthood Federation, the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs, and the Center for International Environmental Law, among others. Ambassador Shelton-Colby was one of the founders and first chairperson of the board of directors of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). She has also served on the Gore-Chernomyrdin Commission, where she was vice chair of the Committees on Health and Agriculture, and the Gore-Mubarak Commission where she was co-chair of the Committee on Education. She has frequently testified before the U.S. Congress and has appeared on U.S. and international television and radio discussing U.S. foreign policy and international public policy issues.

Ambassador Shelton-Colby has also taught political and economic change in developing countries at Georgetown University (where she was also a fellow), Texas A&M University, and the Universidad Católica in Santiago, Chile. She taught U.S. foreign policy decision-making at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and was a fellow at its Center for International Affairs.

She was a Fulbright Scholar at the Institut des Sciences Politiques in Paris, received a master of arts in international relations from The Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, and graduated Phi Beta Kappa with honors in French from the University of Missouri. She has also been awarded honorary doctorates by the University of Missouri and Mount St. Mary’s College. Ambassador Shelton-Colby joined the board of the Pan American Health and Education Foundation in 2008 and is the current treasurer.

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A Sample of Recent PAHEF Projects in the Region