OAKLAND (CBS SF) — Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) was named the Chair of the House Appropriations subcommittee on State and Foreign Affairs (SFOPS), on Monday.

Chairwoman Lee is the first African American to serve as chair to the powerful committee, which has jurisdiction over the country’s nondefense international affairs. She says she will focus on reinvesting in the State Department.

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“Among my top priorities on this committee will be investing in diplomacy, foreign assistance, and development programs, which must be at the forefront of our approach, leaving behind the military first approach of the last 4 years,” said Lee in a statement. “ It’s also critical that we reinvest in the State Department and work to ensure our diplomatic corps and all aspects of our international affairs reflect the diversity of the country.”

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The East Bay congresswoman says she will continue to fight for racial equity. She warns of the growing threat of existential climate change and COVID-19.

“This is a critical time for global investment and cooperation as we fight back a global pandemic, and we have much work to do,” she said.

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Lee spent ten years on the International Relations and served on the Appropriations Committee and the SFOPS Subcommittee for more than a decade.