May 31, 2019

Sen. Sherrod Brown Speaks to 300+ Cleveland Leaders About the Importance of American Diplomacy

Press handout photos here:
Watch the full video here:

 CLEVELAND – Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) spoke to more than 300 Cleveland business, veteran, and community leaders today about the importance of American diplomacy and development programs to our economy and national security.

“When we fail to support workers abroad, or invest in global health and education, it hurts America’s economy and it hurts our national security. When we have a global race to the bottom, workers everywhere get hurt,” said U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH). “We don’t have to choose between supporting workers at home or supporting development abroad—they go hand in hand.”

The U.S. Global Leadership Coalition (USGLC) hosted today’s foreign policy forum in the wake of the Administration’s latest budget proposal released last month, which called for a 24% cut to the State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

“Access to quality healthcare is a matter of life and death, especially in developing countries,” said Peter Ahern, President of Axios Foundation. “When we invest in programs that strengthen healthcare systems and provide better treatment options, we improve the quality of life for people worldwide and save countless lives. We also prevent the spread of devastating viruses and disease like HIV/AIDS and Ebola, which have the potential to destabilize countries. These programs are critical to protecting our national security and creating a safer, healthier world.”

Over 1.27 million jobs in Ohio are tied to international trade, and Ohio’s exports to foreign markets total more than $54 billion a year—meaning U.S. international engagement isn’t just a matter of national security, it’s a strategic economic issue for the Buckeye State.

“U.S. engagement in the world matters right here in Ohio,” said former Governor Bob Taft. “I’ve seen how international trade boosts our economy, leading to more good jobs for Ohioans and revitalizing our communities. Our nation’s diplomatic and development programs help keep American companies competitive in the global marketplace as other countries like China ramp up their own initiatives. If we want America to prosper, we must continue to invest in those vital programs.”

“Not only is investing in global development and diplomacy the right thing to do, it also makes great business sense for American companies. When we engage with the 95% of the world’s consumers who live outside of our borders through so many of our overseas programs, we increase exports. We are helping to grow businesses right here in Ohio and across the country,” said Tara Hogan Charles, Associate Director, Global Government Relations and Public Policy at Procter & Gamble.

A strong and growing coalition in the state, the USGLC’s Ohio Advisory Committee brings together more than 130 business, faith, non-profit, veteran, and political leaders who understand why American global leadership matters for Ohio.

“The USGLC is proud to have an active membership in Ohio, led by an Advisory Committee of some of the Buckeye State’s most distinguished leaders,” said Liz Schrayer, President and CEO of USGLC. “Listening to the conversation today, it’s clear Ohioans understand the value of engaging with the world not only through our defense, but through our diplomacy and development—and that such engagement not only pays dividends locally, but also makes us safer as a nation.”

Also participating in today’s forum was Col. James Dignan, President & CEO, Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber.

The U.S. Global Leadership Coalition ( is a broad-based influential network of 500 businesses and NGOs; national security and foreign policy experts; and business, faith-based, academic, military, and community leaders in all 50 states who support strategic investments to elevate development and diplomacy alongside defense in order to build a better, safer world.