Bureau of Public Affairs
January 11, 2007
Helping Iraqis Rebuild Iraq: Two Provincial Reconstruction Teams PDF version
Provincial Reconstruction Teams: Building Iraqi Capacity and Accelerating the Transition to Iraq Self-Reliance
Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) currently operate in 10 out of Iraq's 18 provinces. They work with local Iraqi leaders to build local capacity in good governance, reconstruction, and economic development with the ultimate goal of accelerating the transition to Iraqi self-reliance. The teams consist of U.S. and Coalition Partner members and, depending on the needs of the province, range in size from 35 to 100. U.S. team members come from the Department of State, USAID, the Department of Defense, the Department of Justice, the Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The work of PRTs Salah ad Din and Babil illustrates the program's nationwide efforts:
The Salah Ad Din Provincial Reconstruction Team
Headquartered on a base north of Tikrit, this team goes daily into downtown Tikrit and other cities and towns in the province to work with elected officials including those who run central government ministries, judges, police leaders, detention facility officials, business people, NGO leaders, university professors, and tribal leaders.
Its accomplishments include:
- With provincial officials, improved fiscal management and designed a five-year Provincial Development Strategy to plan and implement capital investment projects.
- With provincial auditors, developed a computer program that for the first time will bring visibility and accountability to budget measures. n With judges, police, and prison officials, established a court to try terrorist cases and a case-tracking system to ensure due process and speedy trials.
- With farmers and small business owners, obtained microfinance loans to expand business opportunities in agriculture and agribusiness.
- With water resource, electricity and education officials, coordinated projects funded by the U.S. to complement central government projects.
- With tribal and city leaders of Samarra, improved employment and economic opportunities to combat terrorist elements in the city.
The Team Leader for the Salah ad Din PRT is Stephanie Miley, a 16-year U.S. Foreign Service officer who has served in economic and political positions at U.S. posts in the Dominican Republic, Finland, the Sinai, Kosovo, and Baghdad. Ms. Miley has graduate and undergraduate degrees in biochemistry, and a Master's in International Policy studies from Stanford University.
The Babil Provincial Reconstruction Team
Headquartered in Hillah, this team is based in south central Iraq. It has been working since November 2005 toward enhanced governance, stability, and prosperity in the province.
Its accomplishments include:
- Council of Representatives draft law spelling out Provincial Council's powers.
- Project Management Unit now evaluates and prioritizes proposals for infrastructure and other projects funded by the central government.
- District and sub-district councils training for various aspects of local governance.
- Training for members of the Provincial Council resulted in their regularly communicating with citizens through a newspaper and weekly radio call-in show.
- More than a dozen studies on key infrastructure sectors are guiding project selection and implementation.
The Team Leader for the Babil PRT is Charles Hunter, a 17-year U.S. Foreign Service officer who has served overseas in Cairo, Algiers, Muscat, and Jerusalem. Mr. Hunter holds a B.A. from Lawrence University, and an M.A. and Ph.D. from Stanford University. He speaks Arabic and French.