This morning, WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced his senior leadership team.
The new team includes former ministers of health, some of the world’s leading physicians, scientists and researchers, and programmatic experts in universal health coverage, health emergencies, communicable and noncommunicable diseases, climate and environmental health, and women’s, adolescents’ and children’s health. Individually and collectively, they have a wealth of experience across government, private sector, multilateral, civil society and academic organizations.
“The team represents 14 countries, including all WHO regions, and is more than 60% women, reflecting my deep-held belief that we need top talent, gender equity and a geographically diverse set of perspectives to fulfil our mission to keep the world safe,” said Dr Tedros.
Dr Soumya Swaminathan will be Deputy Director-General for Programmes and Jane Ellison will be Deputy Director-General for Corporate Operations.
Dr Soumya Swaminathan has more than 30 years of experience in clinical care, research and translating those findings into programs. She most recently served as Secretary of the Department of Health Research in India and as Director General of the Indian Council of Medical Research. Jane Ellison brings with her more than 30 years of experience in government, commerce and change management. Most recently, she was the Special Parliamentary Adviser to the UK’s Chancellor of the Exchequer. She also served as the UK’s Public Health Minister from 2014 to 2016.
In addition, Dr Peter Salama will remain in his role as the Executive Director of the Health Emergencies Programme.
The Assistant Director-General appointees are:
- Dr Bernhard Schwartländer, Chef de Cabinet
- Dr Naoko Yamamoto, Assistant Director-General for Universal Health Coverage and Health Systems Cluster
- Professor Lubna A. Al-Ansary, Assistant Director-General for Metrics and Measurement
- Dr Svetlana Akselrod, Assistant Director-General for Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health
- Ambassador Michèle Boccoz, Assistant Director-General for External Relations
- Dr Ranieri Guerra, Assistant Director-General for Special Initiatives
- Dr Ren Minghui, Assistant Director-General for Communicable Diseases
- Dr Mariângela Batista Galvão Simão, Assistant Director-General for Drug Access, Vaccines and Pharmaceuticals
- Dr Princess Nothemba (Nono) Simelela, Assistant Director-General for Family, Women, Children and Adolescents
- Mr Stewart Simonson, Assistant Director-General for General Management
- Dr Joy St John, Assistant Director-General for Climate and Other Determinants of Health
All of these appointees will be transitioning into their new roles over the next several weeks.
“I am thrilled to welcome this group of diverse, talented global health leaders to WHO and am grateful for the opportunity to work alongside them to ensure health for all.
“I also would like to acknowledge the work of my transition team, chaired by Dr Senait Fisseha, which has been instrumental not only in helping me seamlessly move into the Director-General role, but also in putting together this leadership team,” said Dr Tedros.
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