The Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety announced the election of the Honorable Ellen O'Kane Tauscher as the independent Chair of its Board of Directors. The coalition of North American apparel companies and retailers, industry associations, and non-governmental organizations has been established to improve worker safety at Bangladeshi garment factories. As Chair, Tauscher will serve a three-year term.
Tauscher brings significant leadership experience as an international negotiator, diplomat and policymaker to the Alliance from her service as a seven-term member of Congress and at the U.S. Deparent of State.
She was appointed by President Barack Obama as Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs, and served from 2009 to 2012, helping to negotiate the New START Treaty between the U.S. and the Russian Federation. She also served as Special Envoy for Strategic Stability and Missile Defense at the State Deparent, and while in Congress, served as co-chair of the congressional Iraqi Women's Caucus, which advocated for women's rights issues in Iraq.
"The respect Ellen has earned in Congress, the State Deparent, and the private sector will serve her well in the role as an independent leader and convener who can work with Alliance members and governments to pursue the critical safety mission and aggressive implementation schedule," said Ambassador James F. Moriarty, an Alliance Board Member, and former U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh.
Tauscher said, "I am excited to be part of this unique public/private partnership between companies and stakeholders who want to materially change the safety and work conditions of tens of thousands of Bangladeshi garment workers." She added, "This is an enormous challenge, but one well worth the time, effort and invesent, as it will not only provide real change for the Bangladeshi workers, but this Alliance endeavor could serve as a global model for collaboration."
After Tauscher returned to the private sector in September 2012, she joined Baker Donelson Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC, in Washington, D.C., as strategic advisor to clients in national security, defense, transportation, export control and energy policy areas.
She also had a noteworthy career in the financial sector, serving as one of the first and youngest women to become a member of the New York Stock Exchange during a 14-year Wall Street career that began at Bache & Co. in 1974. She also served as an officer of the American Stock Exchange.
In Congress, Tauscher represented California's 10th Congressional District, served in the Democratic leadership, and was a member of the House Armed Services Committee, and the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.
Currently, Tauscher also serves on the boards of Invacare Corporation; The Atlantic Council of the United States; the National Comprehensive Cancer Network Foundation; EHealth Corporation; Lawrence Livermore National Security Corporation, LLC; Los Alamos National Security Corporation, LLC; The Nuclear Threat Initiative; the German Marshall Fund; and the National Endowment for Democracy. She also chairs Gov. Edmund Brown's Commission on California's Military Future.