WASHINGTON — The Heritage Foundation is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our friend Lorne W. Craner, a long-serving president of the International Republican Institute as well as a veteran diplomat and public servant.
In a distinguished career spanning three administrations, Craner served as Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor; Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs; and Director of Asian Affairs at the National Security Council. For his diplomatic service, he was awarded the Secretary’s Distinguished Service Award, the State Department’s highest honor. Prior to entering the Executive Branch, Craner worked for several years on Capitol Hill as an aide to Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Rep. Jim Kolbe, R-Ariz.
“For several decades, Lorne Craner was one of the most prominent and principled foreign policy leaders in Washington,” said Kim Holmes, executive vice president of The Heritage Foundation. “As the president of IRI, and later the American Councils for International Education, he was a forceful and tireless advocate for strong U.S. leadership in the world, especially in advancing democracy and human rights.”
Craner was a member of the board of the Millennium Challenge Corp. and he was instrumental in developing the MCC’s “good governance” criteria. He was also a strong supporter of the transatlantic alliance, serving as co-director of the Transatlantic Renewal Initiative.
“The Heritage Foundation had the privilege of working closely with Lorne over the course of many years,” Holmes added. “We shared his vision for advancing a robust U.S. foreign policy on the world stage, based on the principles of liberty and freedom. His legacy is a noble one, that will be continued by our close allies at the International Republican Institute.”