H.E. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete joined the Global Partnership for Education as Chair of the Board of Directors in September 2021.
H.E. Jakaya Kikwete served as the President of the United Republic of Tanzania from 2005-2015. Before becoming President, he served in a variety of roles in the Tanzanian government, including as Minister of Finance, Minister for Water, Energy and Mineral Resources, and Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. He also played pivotal roles in regional cooperation, including as Chair of the African Union and Chair of the Southern African Development Community Troika on Peace, Defence and Security.
Throughout his distinguished public service career, both in the Tanzanian government and subsequently in international and regional organizations, President Kikwete has dedicated himself to advancing progressive policies for education and women and children's health. After retiring from government, President Kikwete served as a special envoy for the International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity, leading high-level delegations to 14 countries across Africa.
President Kikwete also holds a number of other international roles including Co-Chair of the UNFPA High Level Commission on the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25, Co-Chair of the Refugee Council, Member of the High-Level Panel on Every Woman, Every Child and Every Adolescent, Member of the High-Level Panel on Scaling Up Nutrition, Member of the End Malaria Council, and a Board Member of the Nutrition International. On the African continent he is a Member of the Board of the Alliance for the Green Revolution in Africa and Chair of the Board of the Global Water Partnership for Africa and Southern Africa.
On his appointment as GPE Board Chair, President Kikwete said: "I have long championed the importance of quality education. I believe there is no greater change a leader can make to serve the most vulnerable and marginalized children than education. I am honored to lead the Board of the Global Partnership for Education, an organization that is engaged in addressing the global learning crisis that has been exacerbated by COVID-19."
President Kikwete holds a degree in Economics from the University of Dar es Salaam and is now Chancellor of the University. He is also a retired Lieutenant-Colonel in the Tanzanian army.