Home  | 

Sheila Sisulu


Deputy Executive Director of the World Food Programme, former South African Ambassador to the United States.

More by user: Eds
Created: 7th Feb 2008
Modified: 8th Jul 2008
Professional Information
Professional Areas:
United Nations
Working primarily in:
South Africa

Description of Work:

From the World Food Programme website:

Sheila Sisulu was appointed Deputy Executive Director of the World Food Programme (Policy and External Affairs Department) in February 2003. She is responsible for overseeing strategy, policy and programme support. She is also responsible for WFPís Executive Board Secretariat and relations with other UN agencies and non-governmental organisations.

WFP is the UNís food assistance agency and the largest humanitarian organization in the world. Last year, WFP fed 87 million people in 78 countries, including 58.8 million children. It focuses on bringing food to the victims of natural disasters and conflict, refugees, families affected by HIV/AIDS, pregnant women, nursing mothers and young children. In 2006, the total income for this work was US$2.93 billion.

Prior to joining WFP, Ms Sisulu was South Africaís Ambassador to the United States. Her diplomatic career began in 1997 as Consul General in New York and as Ambassador to Washington two years later.

As an African ambassador in Washington, much of Ms Sisuluís work involved raising public awareness and seeking support for the US Governmentís role in alleviating the poverty and suffering in southern Africa Ė a role that helped prepare her for her present job in WFP.

In addition to her diplomatic skills, Ms. Sisulu has 25 years of experience in South African politics and government. After graduating in 1974, Ms Sisulu started work as a high school teacher in Soweto, at the same time becoming closely involved with the radical opposition to the apartheid system. With the end of apartheid and the advent of black-majority rule, she moved to being a force for change from the outside to an implementer of change from within Ė as a special adviser to the national minister of education and a member of the team assigned the task of drawing up new legislation. She was responsible in particular for policy on gender equity, youth development and early childhood care and education.

She holds a post-graduate degree as Bachelor of Education (University of Witwatersrand, 1990), as well as honorary doctorates from the University of Maryland and the City University of New York.

Ms Sisulu is married with a son and two daughters.

Biographical Information
Sheila Sisulu
(At a Glance)
Place of Origin: South Africa

More People

Nigeria, Italy
South Africa
Administration, Government, ...
South Africa