Elizabeth Nyamayaro is Senior Advisor to Under-Secretary-General UN Women; and Global Head of #HeForShe Initiative. Ms. Nyamayaro has worked at the farefront of Africa’s development agenda far more than a decade, helping to improve the lives of under-served populations. She comes to UN Women after serving as Senior Leadership within the Corporate Strategy Office at Merck, the world’s second largest pharmaceutical company, working in support of the company’s on-going efforts to broaden access to medicine in the developing world. During her tenure at Merck, Ms. Nyamayaro also served as Director External Affairs and Policy, Africa, where she supported the launch of key women initiatives including: ‘Merck for Mothers,’ a $500 Million global commitment to reducing maternal mortality; ‘Saving Mothers, Giving Life,’ a maternal health initiative launched in partnership with the US Government by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; and ‘Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon Alliance,’ a cervical cancer prevention initiative in partnership with George W. Bush lnstitute, UNAIDS, Susan G Komen and PEPFAR.
Prior to Merck, Ms. Nyamayaro held positions with UNAIDS, World Health Organization (WHO), and the World Bank, where she led and supported key public health access initiatives. Ms. Nyamayaro was part of the Pharmaceutical Policy team at the World Bank, and provided research on a World Bank publication ‘A Practical Approach to Pharmaceutical Policy.’ She served as Technical Officer at the World Health Organization engaging more than 120,000 African communities in 20 African countries as part of the ‘Mectizan Donation Program,’ one of the most successful public-private partnerships in global health. Ms. Nyamayaro was also instrumental in pioneering scenarios development to UNAIDS in response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic in Africa on the initiative ‘AIDS in Africa – Scenarios to 2025.’
A strong advocate for economic empowerment, Ms. Nyamayaro founded Africa IQ, an innovative social impact organization with a mission to promote Africa’s sustainable economic growth and development. Born in Zimbabwe and a Political Scientist by training, Ms. Nyamayaro holds a MSc in Politics from the London School of Economics and Political Science.