Biography

Photo of Thomas Debass
Thomas Debass
Acting Special Representative for Global Partnerships/Managing Director
Office of Global Partnerships
Term of Appointment: 05/01/2016 to present

Thomas Debass serves as Managing Director of the Office of Global Partnerships at the U.S. Department of State. Thomas is responsible for coordinating the Department’s private sector engagement efforts and providing thought leadership on partnerships related to economic growth, global finance, entrepreneurship, and innovation. His notable partnership accomplishments include: Fishackathon, Unreasonable Goals, Women In Science (WiSci) Camp, Veterans Innovation Partnership (VIP), Liberalizing Innovation Opportunity Nations (LIONS@FRICA), and Boldline PPP Accelerator. Thomas has played a leading role in promoting and institutionalizing the role of public private partnerships as a tool for advancing foreign policy and development objectives. He regularly gives lectures and talks about the intersection of foreign policy, business, and society.

Prior to joining the State Department, he was Lead Economist/Deputy Director in the Office of Investment Policy with the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) in Washington, DC. Thomas also served as a senior technical advisor in USAID’s Global Development Alliance (currently named Development Lab) and Economic Growth, Agriculture and Trade (currently named E3) teams. Prior to his development finance career, Thomas worked on agricultural research projects in Bangladesh and East Africa. Thomas is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a master’s degree in Agricultural and Applied Economics and a bachelor’s in Economics. He also has an Executive Certificate in International Business Management from the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University and Executive Leadership Certificate from Berkeley.