President, The World Bank Group
Paul Wolfowitz was unanimously approved as 10th President of the World Bank Group by the institution’s Board of Executive Directors on March 31, 2005.
Prior to this appointment, Mr. Wolfowitz spent more than three decades as a public servant, ambassador and educator, including 24 years in government service under seven U.S. presidents. His practical experience in the developing world includes three years in Indonesia as U.S. Ambassador, and his Washington-based policy work on East Asian affairs.
Mr. Wolfowitz also has been a leader in higher education. From 1994-2001, he served as Dean and Professor of International Relations at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies of The Johns Hopkins University. Earlier, he taught political science at Yale University. Mr. Wolfowitz has written widely on foreign policy, diplomacy and national security, and was a member of the advisory board of Foreign Affairs.
In government, Mr. Wolfowitz served three years under Secretary of State George Shultz as Ambassador to Indonesia, the fourth most-populous country in the world and largest in the Muslim world. During Ambassador Wolfowitz’s tenure in that country, he was known for reaching out to all elements of society and for his advocacy of reform and political openness. Under his leadership, the embassy in Jakarta was officially recognized as one of the best-managed U.S. diplomatic missions in the world.
Earlier, Mr. Wolfowitz served two years as head of the U. S. State Department’s Policy Planning Office and three-and-a-half years as Assistant Secretary of State for East Asia and Pacific Affairs, where he worked directly with the leaders of more than 20 countries. In that position, Mr. Wolfowitz played a key role in supporting the peaceful transition to democracy in the Philippines in 1986. He also worked to help improve U.S. relations with China, strengthen alliances with Japan and Korea, and lay the groundwork for the subsequent democratic transition in Korea.
In 1989, President George H.W. Bush appointed Mr. Wolfowitz to the post of Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, where he played a role in planning for the successful liberation of Kuwait, including organizing the fundraising effort that raised $50 billion in multilateral support. He also collaborated on the U.S. administration’s nuclear arms reduction initiative, in September 1991. As Deputy Secretary of Defense under President George W. Bush from 2001-2005, Mr. Wolfowitz’s responsibilities included oversight of the budget process as well as development of policy to respond to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
Mr. Wolfowitz majored in Mathematics at Cornell University, in Ithaca, NY, and earned a Ph.D in Political Science at the University of Chicago. His early interest in development issues was evident in his 1972 doctoral dissertation on water desalination in the Middle East, as well as in his first government paper — written in 1966 for the Budget Bureau on the impact of agricultural subsidies.