WASHINGTON – The ONE Campaign released the following statement upon the passing of Mike Gerson, Washington Post columnist and former Bush Administration chief speechwriter. Mike served as a senior fellow at the ONE Campaign for over ten years, strengthening our work and inspiring our volunteers to commit to the fight against extreme poverty and preventable disease.
Tom Hart, President of ONE:
“To say Mike had a way with words is an understatement, but how he used those words, in part, to advocate for the eradication of some of humanity’s biggest scourges – poverty and disease – will have a lasting impact. Mike was an important influence when President Bush decided to launch the historic AIDS initiative PEPFAR and drove the creation of the President’s Malaria Initiative. I wonder if he knew at the time that these efforts would save millions of lives.
“My conversations over the last decade with Mike have been one of the highlights of my time working at ONE. We at the ONE Campaign also knew he was a moving speaker, as he addressed our volunteers numerous times in his gentle tone, sprinkled with stories and frequent humor, always with a moral clarity about America’s role for doing good in the world. He brought down the house. His written and spoken words were reflections of a brilliant mind and generous heart, reminding us what we are doing and why.
“Second to none were his family and friends. I am honored to have had Mike’s friendship and wisdom over the years. Our hearts go out to his wife, Dawn, his two sons, Michael and Nicholas, and to all who knew him. He touched so many through his writing and the policies he inspired. He will be terribly missed.”