President Joyce Banda has joined CGD as a Distinguished Visiting Fellow. President Banda was Malawi’s first female president and Africa’s second. Voted CNN’s Leading Woman of the Year in Politics (2014), President Banda has championed women’s rights in Malawi and beyond. Before her presidency in 2012, she served as Minister of Gender and Child Welfare, Foreign Minister, and Vice President of the Republic of Malawi. As Minister of Gender and Child Welfare, she led the enactment of the Prevention of Domestic Violence Bill. On the international scene, President Dr. Banda was instrumental in the formation of the African Federation of Women Entrepreneurs (AFWE), currently running in 41 countries in Africa; the Council for the Economic Empowerment of Women in Africa (CEEWA); and the American & African Business Women’s Alliance (AABWA), of which she served as First President.
President Banda is concurrently a Visiting Fellow at the Wilson Center and a board member of several development organizations, including the Executive Advisory Committee of UNIFEM, the Global Leaders Council for Reproductive Health, and the Scientific Advisory Board for the program in Global Health and Social Change at Harvard Medical School.