The Co-Chairs of the Strategic Committee of GACSA

Dutch Ambassador, Hans Hoogeveen servers as Ambassador / Permanent Representative of the Netherlands to the UN Organizations for Food and Agriculture. Before that he was the Director General for Agriculture and Nature Management at the Netherlands Ministry of Economic Affairs. As such, Dr. Hoogeveen was the most senior civil servant to lead the agriculture, agribusiness, food safety, food security, veterinary and plant health, international affairs, including the European Common Agricultural Policy and the Common Fisheries Policy, international food security, the FAO and other UN affairs, trade liberalisation (WTO), market access and nature/biodiversity managements agendas.
Over the course of the last two decades, Dr. Hoogeveen served in numerous international functions, including as Chair of the Bureau of the Seventh Session of the United Nations Forum on Forests, which adopted in 2007, under his leadership, an international instrument on forests which was called a landmark achievement by the UN Secretary General after fifteen years of stalled international negotiations. For his achievements within the Forum, Dr. Hoogeveen received an UN award during the High-Level Special Event on the UN General Assembly’s adoption of the international forest instrument. He is one of the founding fathers of the Global Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture and the Global Action Network for Oceans and Blue Growth. He also served, amongst others, as President of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the Facilitator of the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC). He was lead negotiator in a numerous international processes on behalf of the EU and Netherlands government.

Prof. Lindiwe Sibanda Majele is a Zimbabwe national and is the Vice President for Country Support, Policy and Delivery at the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). Her portfolio includes facilitating strategic partnerships for business growth, mobilizing public and private sector for an enabling business environment, and structuring affordable and accessible financial products for SMEs and smallholder farmers across Africa.

Dr. Sibanda has over 25 years of trans-disciplinary experience in agriculture and rural development, public and private sector reforms and management. This experience includes helping government ministries of agriculture to streamline their activities and create a conducive environment for the private sector; and, establishing and strengthening state and non-state actor evidence based policy advocacy platforms.

She is a serving member of, World Economic Forum Council on the future of Food security and Agriculture; the Australia ACIAR Policy Advisory Council; the EAT-Lancet Commission on Sustainable Healthy Food Systems; the United Nations (UN) Committee for Policy Development (CDP); is a champion for the Sustainable Development Goal 12.3 targeting 50% reduction in food loss and waste by 2030; and is a member of the African Union Commission (AUC) Leadership Council.

Former co-chair 2018

Ms. Mi Nguyen is a Canadian citizen and has been the Deputy Permanent Representative of Canada to the UN food and agriculture agencies based in Rome, in particular the FAO and the Committee on World Food Security (CFS). She serves as a co-chair of the Global Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture (GACSA) since 17 June 2016.

A lawyer by training, Ms. Nguyen has worked as a Canadian diplomat for more than 15 years, on a range of global issues (UN affairs, human rights, humanitarian affairs, sustainable development, peacekeeping, transnational organized crime, nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament, as well as food security and nutrition) in various fora in New York, Geneva and Rome, including leading multi-disciplinary teams, participating in international negotiations, building diverse networks and garnering consensus.

She holds a bachelor degree in Law (Common law and Civil law) and a master’s degree in International Relations. She is fluent in French (mother tongue), English and Spanish.

Prior-to her election as co-Chair of the Alliance she had been a very active member of the Strategic Committee, as well as of the Annual Forum Task Team where she made very strong contributions to the organisation of the Annual Forum. Ms Nguyen replaces Inge Herman Rydland and joins Martin Bwalya to continue providing leadership to GACSA.   

Former co-chair 2017

Mr. Martin Bwalya is Head of the Programme Development Division in the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NEPAD Agency), has since 2010 worked as Head of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) Unit in the NEPAD Agency. He also serves as a co-chair in the Global Alliance for Climate Smart Agriculture (GACSA) since 17 December 2015

An Agricultural Engineer by training, Mr Bwalya has worked in the field on agricultural machinery design, moving on to many years of work and over 10 years’ experience in agriculture and rural development in Africa through national and international programmes and initiatives.

As Head of CAADP, his work involved translating the African Union development policy of agriculture, i.e. the CAADP, into implementable guidelines and tools as well as supporting national and regional policy and programme design in various thematic areas including climate smart agriculture, land and water management, agricultural mechanisation and irrigation.

As Head of Programme Development, Mr Bwalya is responsible for coordination and technically supporting identification and formulation of NEPAD programmes across all the priority areas of NEPAD. 

Former co-chair 2016

Inge Herman Ryland served as an inaugural Co-chair of GACSA and under his co-leadership the Alliance has sailed through a very successful inception year crowned by the Annual Forum on 14 – 17 June 2016.  Mr. Ryland helped to construct the Alliance and shepherd its pivot to being focused on climate-smart agriculture in-action. While he steps down as co-Chair, we recognise his strong belief in GACSA and we trust that he will remain a great ambassador of the Alliance in his new functions in the government of Norway. Mr. Ryland’s contributions to the Alliance will bear fruit as its members continue to work towards ensuring global food security in the face of climate change. We remain thankful to him for his service as GACSA Co-chair and we wish him the best in his new assignment.