New Delhi: The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation today announced that M Hari Menon will assume leadership of its India Office, as the Country Director from 24 May 2019.
In his new role, Menon will oversee the foundation’s priorities in India to improve conditions of family health, sanitation, digital financial inclusion, agriculture, and gender equality. He will lead these efforts to advance the country’s health and development goals by working closely with India’s central and state governments, local and global non-profits, community groups, researchers, and the private sector.
Dr. Christopher Elias, President of the foundation’s Global Development division, said, “Hari has played a key role in forging strong partnerships with governments, the private sector, philanthropists, and non-governmental organizations in India and globally. His experience will help the foundation support India’s efforts to deliver inclusive growth that will benefit every citizen.”
Speaking on his new role, Menon said, “India has made tremendous progress on expanding access to health coverage, good nutrition, safe sanitation, digital financial services, agricultural productivity, and women’s economic empowerment. We look forward to supporting these initiatives through our technical and global expertise, to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to lead a healthy and productive life.”
Menon has been associated with the foundation since 2004, with a brief role outside the foundation between 2011 and 2013 when he served as a strategic philanthropy adviser. He has, over the years, supported a wide portfolio of work in public health, especially in maternal and child health and HIV prevention, and in sectors like agriculture development, sanitation and financial inclusion. He also oversees the foundation’s policy and government relations for South and South-East Asia.
Currently, he is a Director, Global Program Advocacy & Communications, based out of the foundation’s headquarters in Seattle. Hari holds a graduate degree in business management from XLRI School of Management, Jamshedpur and a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the College of Engineering & Technology, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.
Menon takes over from Dr. Nachiket Mor, who held this position for the past three years and resigned last month to return to his prior work as a donor and investor in India’s development sector, with a special focus on health system design.
Menon will work along with three directors and their teams; Alkesh Wadhwani who is Director for the Poverty Alleviation portfolio, Liz Clyma who is the Health Director, and Sanjay Ubale who joined the foundation recently and is the Policy Director.