Monday, January 10, 2022
ST. PAUL - Today, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) announced that Hamse Warfa, DEED Deputy Commissioner, has been appointed by President Joseph R. Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to a position advancing the administration’s democracy agenda at home and abroad. Warfa will serve as Senior Advisor, Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights in the United States Department of State.
The Walz-Flanagan administration appointed Warfa as DEED Deputy Commissioner in 2019 as the highest ranking Somali American official in the executive branch of government.
“I am confident Hamse will serve the people of the United States with the same integrity, policy expertise, and collaborative leadership that he provided for the people of Minnesota,” said Governor Tim Walz. “Hamse and his team at DEED advocated for the economic well-being of all Minnesotans during the pandemic and focused on ensuring workers and businesses had the resources and training to survive and thrive. I am grateful for Hamse’s service to our state and his commitment to building an equitable economy that works for everyone.”
“Deputy Commissioner Warfa’s work with the Walz-Flanagan Administration has been transformational. He approaches his work with a clear mission to ensure that the most impacted individuals and communities are centered in decision-making,” said Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan. “I am deeply thankful that he chose to share his expertise with us. I have no doubt he will make Minnesota very proud in this new role.”
“Hamse has been an extraordinary leader, and his legacy will be long felt,” said DEED Commissioner Steve Grove. “He brought true passion to his work, and I know he’ll bring that same heart to Washington as he fights for democracy around the world.”
Under Warfa’s tenure, he successfully advocated for the largest job bill in state history, providing workforce training to more youth and adults. New workforce training programs were established to support African immigrants, increase Black workers in Tech and provide free online training open to all Minnesotan adults during the height of the pandemic. Warfa implemented a faster, more transparent, and inclusive grant making process to help a greater diversity of Minnesota communities address their workforce needs. As co-chair of the Governor’s committee on the safety, health and well-being of agricultural and food processing workers, Warfa championed workers to be vaccinated and recommended safer housing and workforce policies for migrant workers.
"I thank President Joe Biden for this appointment as Senior Advisor to the State Department in the Biden-Harris Administration,” said Deputy Commissioner Warfa. “I am grateful to Governor Tim Walz and DEED Commissioner Steve Grove who empowered me to build on the vision of One Minnesota and create a more inclusive economy. As I prepare to represent all people of the United States, I am blessed by the colleagues, friends and family who supported my public service. My late father regularly offered a special blessing for me, ‘May you be useful to society,’ and I welcome continued support in my new role protecting and promoting democracy."
Warfa currently serves as the Deputy Commissioner at the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. Additionally, he is the cofounder of BanQu Inc., a blockchain-powered social impact platform designed to expand economic opportunity for people worldwide with the lowest incomes. He served as a 2016 Bush Fellow and an Ashoka Fellow. Warfa earned a Master’s in Organizational Management and Leadership from Springfield College, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from San Diego State University. He also completed executive education at Harvard Business School as part of the Young American Leaders Program.
DEED is the state’s principal economic development agency, promoting business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, international trade and community development. For more details about the agency and its services, visit the DEED website, the JoinUsMn.com website, or follow us on Twitter.