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Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Senior Management Group

Sahle-Work Zewde, Director-General of the United Nations Office at Nairobi

Sahle-Work  Zewde, Director-General of the United Nations Office at Nairobi

On 11 March 2011, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appointed Sahle-Work Zewde of Ethiopia as the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Nairobi (UNON).

Ms. Zewde is the first person to be appointed to the newly created position as head of the Organization’s Nairobi Office, at the Under-Secretary-General level.

Ms. Zewde has more than two decades of progressively responsible experience at the national, regional and international levels. She is well known for her skills in building consensus among stakeholders, her knowledge of the Organization to coordinate the activities of the UN Office in Nairobi and, finally, her vast knowledge of the region to build upon partnerships.

Until now she was Special Representative and head of the UN Integrated Peacebuilding Office in the Central African Republic (BINUCA). Prior to that, she was Permanent Representative of Ethiopia to the African Union and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA). She has also served as Director-General for African Affairs in the Ethiopian foreign ministry, posts that she held since 2006.

Prior to that, Ms. Zewde was Ambassador to France, Permanent Representative to the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and accredited to Tunisia and Morocco (2002-2006). From 1993 to 2002, she served as Ambassador to Djibouti and Permanent Representative to the Intergovernmental Authority for Development (IGAD), and to Senegal, with accreditation to Mali, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Gambia and Guinea (1989-1993).

Ms. Zewde is a natural sciences graduate of the University of Montpellier, France. She is fluent in Amharic, French and English.

Born on 21 February 1950, she has two sons.