Maharaj Kishan Bhan has been involved in research to strengthen primary health care for children in rural India for the last two decades. He is a Pediatrician and Clinical Scientist, and is former Secretary of the Department of Biotechnology, Government of India. Dr. Bhan has provided advocacy and leadership to many programs in India including creating an operational strategy for micronutrient supplementation. He is involved in policy formulation in his role as Chair, among others, of the WHO Task Force on Child Health Research, the National Task Force on Micronutrient Policy, Maternal and Child Health Research of the Indian Council of Medical Research, and the Committee for Preparation of Strategy for Promotion of Neonatal Health in South East Asia (SEARO). Dr. Bhan holds M.B.B.S. and M.D. degrees from the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, and has carried out extensive post-doctoral research at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in the areas of diarrheal diseases and child nutrition. He is the recipient of many awards, including India’s third-highest civilian award – the Padma Bhushan. He is currently a National Science Professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.
Myrtille Danse is an internationally recognized expert on the intersection of business strategy and sustainable poverty alleviation. She facilitates the design of enterprise strategies and poverty alleviation approaches for low-income markets, developing capabilities of new market entry, building cross sector collaborations, and evaluating the sustainability impact of business ventures. Myrtille has almost 20 years of experience on value chain development and inclusive business strategies with Multi-National Enterprises and local private sector in transition and developing economies. This experience was obtained as a project leader of numerous international business development projects in Europe, Africa, South-East Asia and Latin America. Her experience as a private sector advisor, including more than eight years in Central America- policy advisor and trade attaché of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and advisor on local private sector development for an international NGO on development cooperation- enables her to mediate between the private sector and vital societal actors required to develop successful pro-poor market-based innovations.
Luz Maria de Regil is the Director, Research and Evaluation and Chief Technical Services at the Micronutrient Initiative. She was previously an Epidemiologist at the World Health Organization (WHO), responsible for coordinating the development of guidelines on nutrition interventions, conducting global micronutrient surveillance, and developing tools for monitoring and evaluation of nutrition interventions. She has 15-plus years of experience in publishing, public health research and policymaking. Through her positions in Mexico and USA, Dr. de Regil combined laboratory techniques, food science and epidemiology for different research projects, including: the development of products for treating severe acute malnutrition; analyzing the prevalence of undernutrition and chronic diseases among Mexican women; and, the assessment of iron compounds for food fortification. She is a member of the WHO Guidelines Review Committee, WHO Research and Ethics Committee, GRADE working group, the Cochrane Collaboration, American Society for Nutrition, Latin American Society of Nutrition, and a former vice-president of the Mexican Society of Nutrition.
Boitshepo Giyose is a Senior Food and Nutrition Security Advisor to the African Union’s New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AU/NEPAD). She previously served as Regional Coordinator, Food and Nutrition Programme, at the Commonwealth Regional Health Community Secretariat for East, Central and Southern Africa (CRHCS-ECSA). Prior to CRHCS-ECSA, she worked in the private sector and also served the Government of Botswana in different capacities as a nutritionist. Ms. Boitshepo holds an MSc in International Nutrition from Cornell University in New York (USA) and a BSc in Nutrition and Dietetics from Appalachian State University in North Carolina (USA). She was awarded a “Distinguished Alumna Award” in recognition of exceptional professional achievement by Appalachian State University in April 2007. In 2008 she was appointed to serve on the Oversight Committee of the Collaborative Crop Research Program of the McKnight Foundation (USA).
Rachel Lambert, Senior Livelihoods Advisor, Department for International Development, United Kingdom
Rachel Lambert is a Senior Livelihoods Adviser in DFID’s Agriculture Research team in the Research and Evidence Division. DFID commissions and funds agricultural research through a range of collaborative partnerships to deliver: a) the development of new agriculture products to sustainably intensify agriculture, b) testing interventions and delivery mechanisms, identifying what works and what doesn’t work and supporting scaled up investment in getting technology into use much more rapidly and c) A deeper understanding of the complex political, social and economic context that influences the success of investments in agriculture development.
Rachel leads on several of DFID’s research programs in agriculture, which span from advanced science through to innovative approaches to get technologies and products into the hands of farmers. She has been involved in scaling up DFID’s research and evidence work looking at the linkages between agriculture and nutrition and health outcomes. She also leads DFID’s funding to and engagement with the G20 initiative, called AgResults: Innovation for Research and Delivery. She has extensive policy and programming experience in food security and rural development, having lived and worked for much of her career in India and parts of Africa. She has a first class BA from Oxford University and an MA in Rural Development from the University of East Anglia.
Anna Lartey is the Director of the Nutrition Division at the Food and Agriculture Organization Headquarters in Rome. She is also President of the International Union of Nutrition Science (IUNS). She was the leader of the Ghana delegation to the Codex Committee on Nutrition for Special Dietary Uses (CCNFSDU). Dr. Lartey was previously Associate Professor and Head of the Nutrition and Food Science Department at the University of Ghana. She received her Ph.D. in Nutrition from the University of California, Davis, where she was a Fulbright student. Dr. Lartey has served on several international Boards and Committees including: MRC International Nutrition Group’s Scientific Advisory Committee; Council of the African Nutrition Society; Food and Nutrition Bulletin Editorial Board; Bioversity International Scientific Advisory Council; and, HarvestPlus Program Advisory Committee.
Fadel Ndiame is the Lead Coordinator of the Farmer Organization Support Centre (FOSCA) at the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). Prior to joining AGRA in 2011, Mr. Ndiame was a Program Director at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Southern Africa. In this capacity he led the conceptualization and content design of the Foundation's Investment program in the region, with a particular focus on economic opportunities and agricultural investment programs. Prior to that, he served as Executive Regional Director of the West Africa Rural Foundation (WARF), Program Coordinator at the Local Organization Support Program (LOSP), and a Program Coordinator at the Senegalese Institute of Agricultural Research. He holds an MSc in Agricultural Economics from Michigan State University, and is currently pursuing his PhD in Sociology with a focus on Rural Development from Wageningen Agricultural University. Mr. Ndiame brings with him more than 25 years of experience in agriculture and economic development policies and programs.
Rajul Pandya-Lorch is head of IFPRI's 2020 Vision for Food, Agriculture, and the Environment Initiative, which seeks to identify solutions for meeting world food needs while reducing poverty and protecting the environment. She concurrently serves as Chief of Staff in the IFPRI Director General's Office. Ms. Pandya-Lorch has facilitated major international conferences, including: Leveraging Agriculture for Improving Nutrition and Health (New Delhi, 2011), Taking Action for the World’s Poor and Hungry People (Beijing, 2007), and Assuring Food and Nutrition Security in Africa by 2020 (Kampala, 2004). She recently led a major project, Millions Fed: Proven Successes in Agricultural Development that documents evidence on policies, programs, and investments in agricultural development that have significantly reduced hunger. Ms. Pandya-Lorch and David Spielman received the 2010 Quality of Communication Award from the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association (AAEA) for their work on the project. Ms. Pandya-Lorch earned a bachelor's degree in Economics from Wellesley College and a master's degree in Public and International Affairs from Princeton University.
Meera Shekar is Lead Health, Nutrition and Population Specialist with the World Bank’s Africa Human Development team. Over the last several years, she has been leading the repositioning of the nutrition agenda within the World Bank and with donor partners that led to the new global Scaling-up Nutrition (SUN) initiative. She is also leading the ICT for Health agenda in the Africa region of the World Bank, on nutrition costing for scaling up, and is starting new work in the field of demography and health. Dr. Shekar has lived and worked across the globe and has extensive programming experience in public health and nutrition in India, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Vietnam, Bolivia, Guatemala, Uzbekistan, Sri Lanka and the Philippines. Before joining the World Bank, she led UNICEF’s Health, Nutrition and Water and Sanitation teams in Tanzania and the Philippines. Dr. Shekar has a PhD in International Nutrition, Epidemiology and Population studies from Cornell University, and is an Adjunct professor at Tufts University. She is a member of several advisory boards, including the Academic Committee of the Public Health Foundation of India and the Cornell University Division of Nutrition.
Lucy Martinez Sullivan is Executive Director of 1,000 Days, a partnership that champions action and investment to improve nutrition during the critical 1,000 days between a woman’s pregnancy and her child’s second birthday as a way to achieve greater progress in global health and development. The 1,000 Days Partnership was launched by the US and Irish governments in 2010 to accelerate progress toward reducing malnutrition and to support the global Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) movement. Prior to joining 1,000 Days, Ms. Sullivan served as Executive Director at CCS, a philanthropic advisory firm, working with clients such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Action Against Hunger, the UN Foundation, and the Wildlife Conservation Society. Previously, Lucy worked as a marketing and finance executive for Fortune 500 companies such as Merrill Lynch and L’Oréal. Ms. Sullivan holds an MBA from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, and a Bachelor of Arts with distinction from the University of Florida.
Shelly Sundberg is a senior program officer on the Nutrition team at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle. She manages grants in the Nutrition portfolio and works closely with the Foundation’s Agricultural Development team on joint agriculture-nutrition initiatives. Dr. Sundberg’s past research focused on the socio-economic determinants of household food consumption and nutritional status in West Africa. She has worked with the Michigan State University Food Security in Africa project in Mali looking at linkages between agricultural marketing, agricultural production, income, food consumption, and nutrition at the household level as well as household coping strategies in times of food shortage. She also worked on state and private grain marketing systems in Niger, Burkina Faso, Mali, Senegal, Mauritania, and Gambia. Dr. Sundberg has published journal articles on agricultural growth, food security, and poverty reduction in Africa, has a bachelor’s degree in African Studies from Georgetown University, and completed a master’s degree and doctoral studies at the Food Research Institute, Stanford University.
Paulus Verschuren is the Special Envoy, Food and Nutrition for Development, for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. Prior to this role, he served as Senior Strategy Advisor, Business & Development Cooperation, at the Ministry where he encouraged linkages between the private sector and development cooperation. Mr. Verschuren worked at Unilever for nearly 30 years in various positions, including Senior Director of the Global Health Partnerships group and Director of External Relations. He has also served as Executive Director of ILSI Europe and was Chairman of the ILSI Board. Other roles included leading the GAIN Business Alliance and serving on the GAIN Board. Presently, he is a member of GAIN’s Partnership Council as well as the BoP Innovation Centre’s Inspiration Council.