Senior Advisor for Program Strategy

William Stadden Cole currently serves as the Foundation’s Senior Advisor for Program Strategy with responsibilities in a range of areas including dialogue and collaboration with key donors at headquarters-to-headquarters level and support to country offices on program strategy and new areas of innovative programming. A key area of focus is on new thinking about development and stability challenges in Advanced Middle Income Countries. Previous positions held in the Foundation were Senior Director leading the Program Strategy, Innovation and Learning unit; Senior Director for Governance and Law Programs; and Director of the Economic Reform and Development program in Indonesia.

Dr. Cole has been instrumental in introducing a wide range of new program areas and strategic directions for the Foundation, including advancing political economic approaches to reform; and development of the Foundation’s work in subnational conflict, counter-corruption, ICT, and small and medium business policy reform. He has played the lead role in the re-establishment of the Foundation’s presence and programs in Afghanistan after 9/11. He travels often in the region. He has written widely and is a frequent speaker on topics related to Asian development, governance reform, conflict and security reform, Afghanistan, the political economy of social and economic reform and development, and analysis and programs to support development in more advanced Asian countries.

Prior to joining the Foundation, Dr. Cole served in USAID in Washington in the Bureau for the Near East, where he established and managed the Governance and Democracy Program immediately following the first Gulf War, and later in the Bureau for Europe and the Independent States (former Soviet Union), where he established a political economy strategic planning unit. Dr. Cole has lived in Asia for more than 13 years working in foreign aid and research-related positions focused on economic policy research, democracy and governance reform, social change, strategic planning and management, and innovative project design and evaluation.

Education: Bachelor’s degree in Natural Sciences and Mathematics from Washington & Lee University; master’s and doctoral degrees in Cultural Anthropology from Washington University (St. Louis).

Phone: (415) 982-4640