President and CEO, Global Fund for Women

Kenya

Some ideas about reproductive health are entrenched in outdated notions and fear, and inspiring and enacting true social change around this issue demands Herculean efforts.

— Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro

Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro serves as the president and CEO of the Global Fund for Women, an organization that supports groups working towards gender equality and women's rights. Dr. Kanyoro was the first woman from the developing world to serve as the general secretary (CEO) of the World YWCA, where she worked from 1998 to 2007. During that time, she led advocacy initiatives around women's reproductive health and the impact of HIV/AIDS. She then served as the director of the Population and Reproductive Health Programme of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation through 2011. Dr. Kanyoro earned a Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of Texas, Austin and a Doctor of Ministry degree in Feminist Theology from San Francisco Theological Seminary.