(Washington, D.C.) — Thomas P. Sheehy is joining the United States Institute of Peace as a distinguished fellow with a focus on conflict prevention and resolution in Africa and the impact of resource scarcity on conflict. He brings a depth of experience to these issues, having worked more than 20 years on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, serving most recently as its staff director under Chairman Ed Royce.
Sheehy’s work on the committee included pressing for the establishment of U.S. Africa Command, a unified combatant command dedicated to helping establish security, stability, and prosperity in Africa; passing the Women, Peace, and Security Act, landmark legislation to strengthen U.S. efforts to prevent and resolve conflict by increasing the role of women in negotiations; and focusing on natural resource management in Africa, including efforts to more equitably allocate oil revenues, regularize mining of precious minerals, and manage wildlife to benefit local communities through the END Wildlife Trafficking Act.
The committee was also key to bringing Liberian warlord Charles Taylor to justice, paving the way for peace in Liberia and Sierra Leone.
“I am delighted that Tom is joining us as a distinguished fellow,” said Nancy Lindborg, president of USIP. “With a special talent for relationship building and a true spirit of bipartisanship, Tom will be an invaluable asset to the team. I sincerely look forward to working with him in the year ahead.”
USIP distinguished fellows serve the president and Institute leaders regarding specific trends and strategic interests. A distinguished fellow’s scope of work is highly customized and may include research, publication, program consultation, and representing the Institute at high level forums.
"I am very honored to join USIP as a distinguished fellow,” said Sheehy. “I have long admired the Institute’s great conflict resolution work in Africa, and we share a deep commitment to building bipartisan relationships—an increasingly critical and too rare commodity in Washington—to support constructive U.S. engagement worldwide.”