U.S. Global Leadership Coalition Hosts America’s Global Leadership Forum

Those at the organization say being a global leader begins in our local communities

FARGO, N.D. — As U.S. lawmakers begin to consider next year’s federal budget, those at the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition say America’s international engagement is necessary.

“There are often — some people believe that we need to retreat from the world, and I don’t hear that. That’s not the conversation I’m hearing. We’re getting bigger crowds than we’ve ever had before,” says USGLC President Liz Schrayer.

But she says our global impact begins locally.

“North Dakotans are an internationally–minded state. They believe in the importance of America being engaged in the world, and we’re really excited to have a conversation about why leading globally matters locally here in North Dakota,” says Schrayer.

That’s exactly what the USGLC’s “America’s Global Leadership” forum addresses.

They say over 104,000 North Dakota jobs are tied to international trade and the state’s overseas exports total more than 5 billion dollars every year, which is why increasing exports and trade markets is key.

More than 150 business, veteran, and community leaders gathered to hear Sen. Kevin Cramer, retired Lt. Gen. Richard Newton and Cargill Vice President Jock Scharfen’s panel discussion.

One refugee who fled the civil war in Sudan and came to the U.S. at 12 years old by herself says she knows first–hand how important America’s role is overseas.

“As a young kid, you know, if it wasn’t for aid worker, who had given me the form to come here, I wouldn’t be here today. It’s because of that heart that we have as U.S. citizen or U.S. involvement in policy making, globals, you know, just to understand about what we are as a people,” says Nyamal Dei of Fargo.

But she says more understanding and awareness needs to take place.

“The more we grow together as a global community, the more everybody’s lives are better. You wouldn’t even see crime, hate or anything like that. We’ll just use the word of love, that’s all I can say.”

The forum emphasized national security, the economy and American values.

The U.S. International Affairs Budget makes up 1 percent of the entire federal budget.

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