Jim Lutzweiler has 19 years of experience in international relief and development. His academic background is rooted in political science, philosophy and policy analysis, as well as conflict resolution and negotiation experience. For over a decade he lived and worked in West and Central Africa, focused on international development program design and implementation, emergency/relief food program management, grant writing, and policy formulation.
Before assuming his current role with AARP Foundation, Jim worked with Joint Aid Management, a South African humanitarian organization dedicated to school feeding programs across Africa that met the needs of over 1 million children each school day. In addition, he worked to facilitate financial investments in agri-business supply chains to foster local agriculture production, as well as produce fortified blended foods.
Prior to that, he worked for Catholic Relief Services, first based in Central Africa to design their regional Peace and Justice programming structure, and then in 1999 he opened and managed until September 2002, the first CRS office in Nigeria since the end of the Biafra conflict. He then moved to Southern Africa to manage CRS’ emergency and relief programs of Malawi, and eventually to the Deputy Regional Director position providing technical and management support to five Southern Africa country programs affected by the 2002 – 2004 food crisis.
Jim then transitioned to World Vision International based in Johannesburg, South Africa to conduct research and program analysis of food aid programming spanning 38 countries, including donor engagement with WFP, USDA, and USAID title II food resources. He was then asked to lead an international team to develop World Vision International’s food aid policy. This policy was instrumental in the fight against current policy efforts within the NGO community to shift substantial sums of U.S. food resources to cash or local purchase. He is still staunchly opposed to such foreign aid policies unless requisite emerging market policy change fosters investment in the agriculture sector.
He then went on to serve as the International Food Aid Policy and Program Advisor to the International Programs Group of World Vision U.S. based in Washington, DC. During the December 2005 WTO Ministerial in Hong Kong, Jim served as an advisor on food aid and agricultural issues to the U.S. Trade delegation headed by Ambassador Rob Portman.
Currently based in Washington, DC he serves as the Vice President, Hunger Impact Programs for AARP Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to finding solutions to the housing, hunger, income and isolation needs of the vulnerable 50+ senior adults across the United States. He is focused on how to bring short and long-term scalable solutions to bear on senior adult hunger and undernutrition. His work supports both raising awareness and delivering tangible outcomes for those senior Americans who are in need. The goal of his work is to strengthen local and regional food security systems, deepen understanding of why seniors are undernourished, and support people who want to join the fight.
He resides in Bethesda, Maryland with his wife.