USAID’s Jeff Hill Shares the Origin Story of Africa Lead

USAID’s Jeff Hill (left) with Carla Denizard, Africa Lead West Africa’s Regional Director (Center), and Maurice Lorka N’Guessan (right), CAADP Pillar IV Advisor (Rural Economy and Agriculture Department) African Union Commission.

In 2010 the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) determined the time was right for a new era in capacity building for Africa’s agriculture sector. For African agriculture to reach its potential, USAID wanted to support African leaders who wanted to be driving agricultural transformation across the continent.

Africa Lead, USAID/Feed the Future’s primary capacity building program in sub-Saharan Africa, was born.

Since the beginning of Africa lead I in 2010, the project has touched the lives of over 16,000 men and women from nearly 40 countries. Africa Lead II has evolved into a flagship program helping countries across the continent lead agriculture transformation in line with the African Union’s Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Program (CAADP) goals of reduced hunger and poverty by building the capacity of champions, institutions, and stakeholders to develop, lead, and manage the structures needed for African-led agriculture transformation and enhance food security.

Africa Lead had the honor of sitting down with one of the principal architects of the program, Jeff Hill former Director for Food and Agriculture Policy at USAID, to learn more about how the program came about and what USAID’s hopes are for the program’s future.

David Tardif-Douglin, Program Director for phases I and II of Africa Lead, expressed his appreciation for the vision and tenacity of Jeff Hill’s guidance and leadership of the project, “I am in awe at his ability to build and maintain a coalition of support for the transformation of African agriculture. His energy is infectious.”

Watch the video below to learn about the Africa Lead story from Jeff Hill.

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