My congratulations go to Dr Akinwumi Adesina , who was sworn in as Nigeria’s new Minister of Agriculture on 14th July . I have had the pleasure of knowing Dr Adesina as a colleague for many years, and I am delighted that he has been appointed to this role.
Dr Adesina was until his appointment the Vice President (Policy and Partnerships) at the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) which was established by the Rockefeller Foundation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with the goal of bringing a green revolution to Africa and lifting millions of poor farmers out of poverty and food insecurity. Dr Adesina worked for AGRA since its inception in 2006.
An agricultural economist, with over 20 years of professional experience in African agriculture, Dr Adesina is a doctoral graduate of Purdue University. Before joining AGRA in 2008, he was Associate Director for food security at the Rockefeller Foundation, New York, for more than a decade. Prior to working at Rockefeller he held senior scientific positions within the international agricultural research centers of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, including the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture, West Africa Rice Development Association and the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics. Dr Adesina is the recipient of a number of international awards including the prestigious Borlaug Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) Communication Award in Iowa and the YARA Prize for African Green Revolution in Oslo, Norway won in 2007. He was appointed by the Secretary General of the United Nations as one of 17 world leaders who will help to galvanize international support for the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.
I wish Dr Adesina every success with his new and important mission in Nigeria.