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The USAID-Walmart regional agreement builds on experience gained from previous collaborations in Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador. One of the lessons learned is that formal relationships between the suppliers and the corporate buyers provide the long-term perspective necessary to ensure the sustainability of the program. Another is that small farmers benefit greatly when buyers explain their quality and quantity standards and share their production calendars.
In 1986, Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart, had a problem. He was under growing pressure from shareholders — and his wife, Helen — to appoint a woman to the company’s 15-member board of directors.
So Mr. Walton turned to a young lawyer who just happened to be married to the governor of Arkansas, where Wal-Mart is based: Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Mrs. Clinton’s six-year tenure as a director of Wal-Mart, the nation’s largest company, remains a little known chapter in her closely scrutinized career. And it is little known for a reason. Mrs. Clinton rarely, if ever, discusses it, leaving her board membership out of her speeches and off her campaign Web site.
Fellow board members and company executives, who have not spoken publicly about her role at Wal-Mart, say Mrs. Clinton used her position to champion personal causes, like the need for more women in management and a comprehensive environmental program, despite being Wal-Mart’s only female director, the youngest and arguably the least experienced in business. On other topics, like Wal-Mart’s vehement anti-unionism, for example, she was largely silent, they said.
Her years on the Wal-Mart board, from 1986 to 1992
The U.S. Agency for International Development and Walmart, a U.S. multinational retailer, have agreed to jointly support small rural farmers in Central America under a partnership that aims to connect them with the company’s regional and international supply chains.
The three-year partnership links USAID’s Feed the Future and Walmart’s Global Sustainable Agriculture Goals, which focuses on supporting farmers and their communities, sustainably sourcing agricultural products and producing more food with less waste.
Actitivites conducted under the partnership will be jointly funded by USAID, Walmart, Walmart Foundation, Central American governments, non-governmental organizations and other private sector partners.