The Global Fund has chosen a new Chair who comes from the private sector, and a new Vice-Chair who comes from an African NGO. This is the first time that both positions have come from sectors other than government.
The new Chair is Rajat Gupta, a US citizen born in India who has represented the private sector on the Global Fund board for the past five years. Gupta served from 1994 to 2003 as CEO of McKinsey & Co., described by Newsweek as “by far the most influential consulting firm in the world”. He is also the Board Chair of the Indian School of Business, and Chair of the Public Health Foundation of India, a public/private partnership to establish seven schools of excellence in public health that will train over 10,000 professionals each year.
Gupta's father was deeply involved in India's struggle for independence, for which he went to jail several times. Both of Gupta's parents died by the time he was eighteen. He won scholarships to the Indian Institute of Technology and Harvard Business School. After graduating from Harvard in 1973 he went straight to McKinsey & Co., where he has been based ever since. Mr. Gupta has served as special advisor on management reforms to the Secretary-General of the UN.
The new Vice-Chair is Elizabeth Mataka, a Zambian citizen who represents developing country NGOs on the GF Board. For the past sixteen years she has worked at the community and national level on HIV/AIDS issues. At various times in her career she has worked in government, the private sector and the NGO sector. She currently serves as Executive Director of the Zambia National AIDS Network (ZNAN), which is one of several GF Principal Recipients in Zambia. She has been a member of the Zambia National AIDS Council since its inception.
“The Global Fund is in the business of saving lives, and like the private sector we have a very strong focus on results,” said Dr. Michel Kazatchkine, the Fund's new Executive Director. “We want to make sure the world is getting the best possible return on the investment we've been entrusted with. Having a chair from the private sector and a vice-chair from an African citizens' group underlines our accountability to best business practices, and to social justice.”
Gupta takes over the role of Chair from Dr. Carol Jacobs, Chair of the National Commission for HIV/AIDS of Barbados. Mataka succeeds Dr. Lieve Fransen, Head of Human and Social Development for the European Commission's Directorate General of Development. Gupta and Mataka will serve for two years.