After an extensive worldwide search, the ONE Campaign has named Gayle Smith — a top advisor on development issues to two American presidents and one of the world’s leading experts on global development — as president and chief executive officer. Smith succeeds Michael Elliott, who passed away in July 2016, and Adrian Lovett, who has served as the interim CEO.
“Never have there been greater challenges or opportunities on the road to sustainable and equitable development in Africa,” Smith said in a statement today. “I’m thoroughly excited to work with the ONE team and our partners all over the world, particularly in Africa, to achieve the progress that is possible.”
Smith will bring her unparalleled expertise on development and democracy issues to ONE, in addition to a great network of relationships across the African continent and around the world. In her most recent role, administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, Smith led a staff of more than 10,000 people working to end extreme poverty, foster sustained and inclusive economic growth, and promote resilient, democratic societies all over the world.
“We’re excited and delighted that Gayle is coming to ONE,” said ONE co-founder Bono. “She is a strong, savvy leader with deep expertise and decades of experience working to change the conditions that allow extreme poverty to thrive.”
ONE board chair Tom Freston added: “We’re ecstatic to welcome Gayle to ONE. We lobby for the world’s poorest citizens, and with Gayle’s expertise and track record of proven bipartisanship, both across the aisle and across the Atlantic, we are upping the ante on our efforts to help the poor, who now face the most consequential humanitarian and security challenges in a generation.”
Please join us in welcoming Gayle Smith to ONE!