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Kandeh K. Yumkella: "When we discuss poverty alleviation, or industrial development, we must always remember it is about people."
On 7 December 2009, at the UNIDO General Conference, Thirteenth Session, Kandeh K. Yumkella of Sierra Leone was reconfirmed for a second term in office.
As the first Director-General from Sub-Saharan Africa, Yumkella's first term in office formally began on 8 December 2005.
Yumkella joined UNIDO in 1996 as Special Advisor to the then Director-General, Mauricio de Maria y Campos. In the same year he became Director of the Africa and Least Developed Countries Regional Bureau, until 2000 when he went to Nigeria as UNIDO Representative and Director of the Regional Industrial Development Centre, a position he held until 2003. From then until his election as Director-General he was a Senior Advisor to the previous Director-General, Carlos Magariños.
Prior to joining UNIDO, between 1994 and 1995 he was Minister for Trade, Industry and State Enterprises of Sierra Leone. During his earlier career he occupied several academic and research positions in the United States. Dr. Yumkella has co-authored numerous articles, books and staff papers on international trade and development issues. He holds a Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from the University of Illinois.
as author at The Academic Council on the United Nations System 23rd Annual Meeting,