The World Food Prize Foundation

2019 Borlaug Dialogue Speakers

Amb. Ertharin Cousin

Distinguished Fellow, The Chicago Council on Global Affairs

Ertharin Cousin is currently a Distinguished Fellow, Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and Visiting Scholar, Stanford University, Center on Food Security and Environment. Cousin co-chaired the CCGA 2019 publication, “From Scarcity to Security: Managing Water for a Nutritious Food Future”.

Cousin has more than thirty years of national and international non-profit, government, and corporate leadership experience focusing on hunger, food and resilience strategies. In 2009, she was nominated and confirmed as the US Ambassador to the UN Agencies for Food and Agriculture in Rome. From 2012 until 2017 Cousin led the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) as the twelfth Executive Director (ED), guiding it in meeting urgent food needs while championing longer-term solutions to food insecurity and hunger.

Prior to her global hunger work, Cousin helped lead the U.S. domestic fight to end hunger while serving as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of America’s Second Harvest - now Feeding America. Previously, Cousin served as Senior Vice President for Albertson’s Foods. While serving at Albertson she was appointed by the U.S. President to the Board for International Food and Agricultural Development where she helped oversee U.S. government agriculture research investments worldwide. Before Albertson’s, Cousin also served in government as the White House Liaison to the State Department.

Ertharin Cousin is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Chicago; the University of Georgia Law School and the University of Chicago Executive Management Finance for Non-Financial Executives program. 

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