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DAA: Reuben J. Olembo

Reuben J. Olembo

Nairobi, Kenya | Distinguished Ag Alumni: 1994

Dr. Olembo is the Assistant Executive Director for the United Nations Environment Programme. He has been a staff member of the United Nations Environment Programme since 1975, serving in the positions of Senior Programme Officer of Natural Resources, Deputy Director of the Ecosystems and Natural Resources Division, Director of Environmental Programmes, Member of the Senior Management Group, and Chair of the Joint Advisory Committee on Policy and Administration. Prior to his appointment with the United Nations Environment Programme, Dr. Olembo was a professor of botany at the University of Nairobi. Dr. Olembo is a strong advocate for promoting and improving education in Kenya and neighboring countries. He has served as an examiner for the Cambridge University School Certificate, a chief examiner for the East African Examinations Council, and an external assessor for university degrees in Nigeria, Ghana, and Tanzania. During his tenure with the United Nations Environment Programme, Dr. Olembo has made significant contributions. The World Conservation Strategy, a major document on conservation of living resources for sustainable resources, was the result of project activity initiated and formulated under Dr. Olembo’s supervision. It has become the primary reference for world-wide national conservation strategies and policies. He also had a prominent role in establishing The World Soils Policy, the Tropical Forest Action Plan of 1985, and the Microbial Resource Centers. Dr. Olembo is frequently invited to speak at world conferences on the environment, food security, biochemical nitrogen cycling, African education, and biological diversity.