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Charter Holdings’ Ray Washburne Approved By U.S. Senate To Run Overseas Private Investment Corp.

Charter Holdings' Ray Washburne speaking at a Bisnow event

After being nominated by President Donald Trump in June, Dallas businessman Ray Washburne has been approved by the U.S. Senate to run the Overseas Private Investment Corp. Washburne, the CEO and president of Charter Holdings, is now also the president and CEO of OPIC. 

Trump’s 2018 budget proposal calls for the agency’s shutdown. When asked by Sen. Todd Young what the proposed elimination of the agency means for him, Washburne said, “The president and his team know that I'm a builder, I'm not someone to sit there and look at an organization and wind down. In light of that, the mission of OPIC is something that I believe in, I feel like I have the right experience to grow it, to continue to take its mission forward."

OPIC is a self-sustaining government agency that facilitates American investment in emerging markets. The agency gives business and risk management tools to businesses looking to expand into emerging markets worldwide. 

Trump nominated Washburne on June 5. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved him on July 27 and the Senate approved him on Aug. 3.

Nationally, Washburne has a long history as a fundraiser in the Republican Party, most notably for the presidential campaigns of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. Locally, Washburne is best known as president of Highland Park Village (owned by his Charter Holdings) and co-founder of Mi Cocina restaurant. 

Washburne, along with fellow founding partners Mico Rodriguez, Dick Washburne and Bob McNutt, founded M Crowd restaurant group, which owns Mi Cocina, Taco Diner and The Mercury. 

“I’ve seen firsthand how American innovation and American capital can impact developing countries,” Washburne said in his nomination statement. “America’s entrepreneurial spirit can improve the wellbeing of people living in some of the world’s most vulnerable countries.”