Taiya M. Smith is no longer with the Carnegie Endowment.
Taiya M. Smith was a senior associate in the Carnegie Energy and Climate Program and the Carnegie Asia Program, where her research focused on China’s climate, energy, and environmental policy. She has spent the last decade working in international negotiations.
Most recently Smith served as a member of Secretary Hank Paulson’s senior management team from 2006 to 2009 as the deputy chief of staff and executive secretary for the U.S. Department of the Treasury. In this role she provided policy and operational oversight for Department priorities and also managed the secretary’s relationship with China. As Paulson’s representative and lead negotiator in China, she led the U.S. government’s economic engagement with China through the U.S.-China Strategic Economic Dialogue and established the U.S.–China Ten Year Framework on Energy and the Environment.
Prior to joining Treasury, Smith served as special assistant to deputy secretary of state Robert B. Zoellick from July 2005 to July 2006. In this role, Smith was Zoellick’s policy adviser for Africa, Europe, and political/military affairs.
From March 2004 through July 2005, Smith was the State Department’s point person on the Darfur situation with responsibility for overseeing U.S. contributions to the African Union peacekeeping mission in Darfur, and was the U.S. liaison to the Darfur rebel groups. In this position, she traveled throughout Africa and Europe coordinating the international response to the Darfur crisis.
Smith began her work at the State Department as a Presidential Management Fellow in the office of Population, Refugees and Migration in 2003. She held positions in Accra, Ghana, and Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire as Refugee Coordinator and in 2004 worked in the Democratic Republic of the Congo on the disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration of combatants.
Before joining the State Department, Smith was a member of the facilitation team for the Burundi Peace Negotiations led by Nelson Mandela. After the peace agreement was signed in 2001, Smith advised the United Nations on implementing the agreement. She has also worked in India, Nigeria, and Cameroon.