United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, following consultation with the Bureau of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), announced on 8 June 2020 the appointment of Elizabeth Maruma Mrema of Tanzania as Executive Secretary of the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity.
Since December 2019, Ms. Mrema has been the Acting Executive Secretary of the CBD Secretariat. Prior to that, Ms. Mrema served as Director of the Law Division at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Nairobi, Kenya. With over two decades of experience at the United Nations, Ms. Mrema brings to the position extensive experience in global environmental law and policymaking, implementation of environmental and sustainable development programmes, and a deep knowledge of multilateral processes. From 2009 to 2012, she served as the Executive Secretary of the UNEP/Secretariat of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals as well as served as the Acting Executive Secretary of the UNEP/ASCOBANS (Agreement on the Conservation of Small Cetaceans of the Baltic, North East Atlantic, Irish and North Seas) as well as Interim Executive Secretary of the UNEP/Gorilla Agreement, all based in Bonn, Germany.
Before joining UNEP, Ms. Mrema worked with United Republic of Tanzania’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. During her time with the Ministry, she also lectured in Public International Law and Conference Diplomacy at Tanzania's Centre for Foreign Relations and Diplomacy.
Ms. Mrema holds a Master of Law degree from Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada, a Postgraduate Diploma in International Relations and Diplomacy from the Centre of Foreign Relations and Diplomacy in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, and a Bachelor of Law from the University of Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania.