Global Health Community Marks Passing Of U.S. Rep. Donald Payne

Rep. Donald Payne (D-N.J.), the first African American elected to Congress from New Jersey, died of complications from colon cancer on Tuesday at age 77, VOA News reports (Simkins, 3/6). “Payne, the highest ranked Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health and Human Rights, worked to protect human rights and provide humanitarian aid to developing countries, particularly in Africa,” United Press International writes (3/6). “He was … a founder of the Malaria Caucus in Congress and helped secure billions of dollars in foreign aid for treating HIV, AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria,” the New York Times notes (Hernandez, 3/6).

“The global health community lost one of its strongest champions today with the death of Representative Donald Payne,” U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator Ambassador Eric Goosby wrote in the State Department’s “DipNote” blog (3/6). President Obama, USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah, and numerous other legislators and groups released statements marking Payne’s death.