Meet the Women of OPIC: Kathryn C. Kaufman
March is National Women's History Month, a time to recognize the contributions that women have made to our nation. Everyday throughout the month of March, we will feature one of OPIC's 126 women employees in our Meet the Women of OPIC series. Learn about our diverse workforce and what inspires them to work for the Agency.
Kathryn C. Kaufman
Managing Director, Global Women's Issues
Tell us a little about yourself:
Before joining OPIC, I was a founding Partner at New Magellan Ventures (NMV), a venture capital and project development firm in Washington, DC. My passion project there was overseeing the development of a privately financed high-speed rail connecting Dallas and Houston. Prior to joining NMV, I worked at the Pentagon as a Country Director for China and Taiwan on the Asia Pacific desk in Secretary Gates’ policy office. I also served in the United States Embassy Beijing, both in the Foreign Commercial Service Office and also in the Ambassador’s office as control officer for the Presidential Delegation to the 2008 Summer Olympic Games. I love the Olympics!
What do you like best about working at OPIC?
The people. My colleagues at OPIC are among the most talented I have ever had the opportunity to work with. They are smart, experienced, diligent, thoughtful, and humble – a rare combination in Washington!
I am also grateful to be part of the OPIC mission. Our investments aim to transition nations from aid recipients to strong, stable contributors to the global economy. It’s nice to know that we are working hard everyday to improve lives around the world.
Is there a woman who has inspired you?
I come from a long line of inspiring women. My great-grandmother, Elizabeth French Platts Card, was an original suffragette and marched in the Boston Women’s Parade in 1915. I still have the banner she carried (pictured below with my mother). My great-grandmother passed those impassioned genes down and my mother, who is one of the strongest women of her time. Her career included serving as the only female Senior Vice President at a male-dominated Fortune 50 company. No matter how successful she was in the workplace, nothing could match her success as a mother. She raised two girls to be strong, independent women, passionate about giving back. My sister is an environmentalist with two masters’ degrees. She teaches science at a Title 1 high school in Georgia – talk about a hero!
Will you share an interesting fact about yourself?
While I’m focused every day on empowering women and consider myself an outspoken feminist, the most interesting thing about me is my husband. He keeps me laughing while we try our best at life. Our free time is spent keeping our rescue dogs in control, playing mediocre tennis, cheering for Kentucky college sports, eating and talking about food. My mother-in law once said, “make sure you marry the partner that you deserve”. She raised the perfect partner and I’m so grateful.