|The Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, José Graziano da Silva, has appointed Abebe Haile-Gabriel to the post of FAO Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for Africa
A national of Ethiopia, Haile-Gabriel has more than 30 years of extensive experience in strategic leadership and management in complex environments at national, sub-regional and regional levels focused on agricultural and rural development in Africa.
Haile-Gabriel’s career began in 1986 as a faculty member of the then Alemaya (now Haramaya) University in Ethiopia, and he rose through the ranks until 2005, assuming progressive senior leadership positions as educationalist, researcher and manager contributing to design and delivery of capacity-building interventions in support of reforms and strategies on governance and agricultural transformation.
Between 2005 and 2015, Haile-Gabriel served the African Union, first as Director of Semi-Arid Food Grains Research and Development, based in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, then as Head of Rural Economy Division and finally as Director of the Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture of the African Union Commission in Addis Ababa.
Some of the hallmarks of his achievements include the successful rolling out of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) at country and regional levels, the elaboration and subsequent adoption of the 2014 Malabo Declaration on Agriculture, and the effective coordination of the African Common Position on Climate Change.
Haile-Gabriel joined FAO in 2015 to serve as Deputy Regional Representative for Africa and Representative to Ghana, and since 2017 as the Regional Programme Leader for Africa, during which time he played lead role in refocusing and aligning FAO’s regional initiatives and strategic programmes in Africa with the priorities espoused by key national and regional partners for improved programme delivery.
Haile-Gabriel holds a Doctorate and a Masters’ degree in Agricultural and Rural Development from the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) in The Hague, the Netherlands, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Economics from the Alemaya University in Ethiopia.
He replaced Bukar Tijani who is now the Assistant Director-General in charge of the Agriculture and Consumer Protection Department, based at the FAO headquarters in Rome.