Vancouver Ethiopian Blog

Ethiopian life in Vancouver, BC, Canada

Role Model Ethiopian – Daniel W. Yohannes

Ethiopia’s population is now estimated at 80 million. There are more than 1.6 million Ethiopians living out side of Ethiopia. Out of these, about 600,000 live in North America (100,000 in Canada and 500,000 in the USA). The vast majority of Ethiopians reside in the East and West Coasts of the USA.

There are many prominent and successful Ethiopians in the USA. Most Ethiopians in the USA are university educated. In fact, a few years ago, a US study indicated Ethiopian-Americans as the most educated people in the USA (based on percentage).

So, from time to time, I will try to highlight some Ethiopian role models (whether in the USA or Canada or any other country). To day, I picked Mr. Daniel W. Yohannes.

The White House press release below pretty much summarizes who Mr. Yohannes is:

U.S. Senate Confirms Daniel W. Yohannes as CEO of Millennium Challenge Corporation

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The United States Senate on Friday unanimously confirmed President Barack Obama’s nomination of Daniel W. Yohannes as the new Chief Executive Officer of the U.S. Government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC). As CEO, Mr. Yohannes will undertake MCC’s mission to reduce poverty through economic growth.

Photo: Daniel W. Yohannes

MCC is an innovative and independent U.S. foreign aid agency that is helping lead the fight against global poverty. Created by the U.S. Congress in January 2004, with strong bipartisan support, MCC is changing the conversation on the delivery of U.S. foreign assistance by focusing on good policies, country ownership, and results.

During his confirmation hearing in front of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Mr. Yohannes said, “I welcome the opportunity to lead MCC. I will work as a good emissary for MCC to partners around the world, to U.S. Congress, and to all stakeholders, with the input of MCC’s professionals, the Board of Directors, the development community, partner countries, and the private sector. I’m confident that MCC’s anti-poverty partnerships worldwide will generate sustainable economic growth and opportunity, and this is fundamental to enhancing our collective security and common humanity for a more prosperous, peaceful world.”

Mr. Yohannes continued, “We have a lot to accomplish in order to advance our government’s vision to reduce global poverty. It is challenging to replace patronage with partnership to deliver smart aid that matters by encouraging some policies, country-led development, and sustainable results. MCC offers some important lessons on where to start. MCC lays an innovative foundation to address the complex problem of global poverty.”

Following is Mr. Yohannes’ biography:

Daniel W. Yohannes, Chief Executive Office, Millennium Challenge Corporation

Daniel W. Yohannes, a former banker and active philanthropist from Englewood, Colorado, was nominated by President Obama as Chief Executive Officer of MCC on September 18, 2009.

Since retiring from his post as Vice Chairman of U.S. Bank in 2003, Mr. Yohannes has been a private investor specializing in real estate, financial institutions, and the renewable energy sector. From 1992 to 1999, Mr. Yohannes was President and CEO of Colorado National Bank (part of U.S. Bank), and before this held a number of leadership roles at Security Pacific Bank (now Bank of America).

Mr. Yohannes is active in his community and serves on various boards and civil organizations, including the Board of the National Jewish Hospital, the Denver Art Museum’s Board of Trustees, and the Board of Directors for the University of Colorado Medical School. He was a board member of Project C.U.R.E. (Commission on Urgent Relief & Equipment), which provides medical supplies for needy people around the world, and chairman of the Mayor of Denver’s Greenprint Council, a leadership group focused on improving the environment of cities and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Mr. Yohannes graduated from Claremont McKenna College with a B.A. in Economics and earned an M.B.A. from Pepperdine University. Born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, he is fluent in Amharic.

# # #

Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), a United States Government agency designed to work with developing countries, is based on the principle that aid is most effective when it reinforces good governance, economic freedom, and investments in people that promote economic growth and help eliminate extreme poverty.  For more information about MCC, visit


If you know any role model Ethiopian that should be featured here, please let me know.


My next blog entry will be on Thursday December 10, 2009.

Mullkam Samint!

December 3, 2009 - Posted by | Ethiopian Businesses, Ethiopian Careers, Ethiopian Citizenship, Ethiopian Culture, Ethiopian Education, Ethiopian History, Ethiopian Investments, Ethiopian Languages, Ethiopian Media, Ethiopian Socials, Ethiopians & Technology, Ethiopians Back Home, Ethiopians in Vancouver | , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. hey I am celebetrty too lool
    arte you goinna post about me?

    Comment by Nazrett | December 16, 2009 | Reply

  2. Hey for real did you post some thing about the sorgam researcher who worn the WFP prize of 2009?
    here is link to VOA where his history is posted in detail.

    Comment by Nazrett | December 16, 2009 | Reply

  3. […] December 3: Role Model Ethiopian – Daniel W. Yohannes […]

    Pingback by Ethiopian Vancouver Blog: Looking at My 2009 Posts « Vancouver Ethiopian Blog | January 6, 2010 | Reply

  4. […] Role Model: Joseph Kibur In my early posts, I featured Danil W. Yohannes and Prof Sossina M. Haile as role model Ethiopians. While thinking about my next role model […]

    Pingback by Ethiopian Role Model: Joseph Kibur « Vancouver Ethiopian Blog | March 25, 2010 | Reply

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