New director general designate of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) Jimmy Smith (photo credit: ILRI/Paul Karaimu).
Jimmy Smith has been appointed the new director general designate of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI).
ILRI board chair Knut Hove made the announcement at the 35th meeting of the ILRI Board of Trustees, on 13 April 2011, to an afternoon gathering of ILRI staff, management and board.
In his announcement, Hove said, ‘We are facing challenges to make livestock more beneficial to the poor and less harmful to the environments of the poor. We think Jimmy Smith is a strong leader for ILRI, one who will open up new partnerships for pro-poor livestock research.’
Born in Guyana, in the Caribbean, where he was raised on a small mixed crop-and-livestock farm, Smith holds dual nationalities with Canada. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois, at Urban-Champaign, USA, where he completed hid PhD in animal sciences. Now based at the headquarters of the World Bank, in Washington, DC, he currently leads the Bank’s Global Livestock Portfolio.
Earlier in his career, Smith served for ten years at ILRI and its predecessor, the International Livestock Centre for Africa (ILCA) (1991–2001). At ILCA and then ILRI, Smith was the institute’s regional representative for West Africa, where he led development of integrated research promoting smallholder livelihoods through animal agriculture and built effective partnerships among stakeholders in the region. At ILRI, Smith spent three years leading the ILRI-led Systemwide Livestock Programme of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), an association of 10 CGIAR centres working on issues at the crop-livestock interface. Since leaving his decade of work at ILCA/ILRI and the CGIAR, Smith has continued playing a major role in supporting international livestock for development in terms of both funding and strategizing.
Before joining the World Bank, where he has served for five years, Smith held senior positions at the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) (2001-2006) and the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) (1986–1991).
Smith will take over from Carlos Seré, ILRI’s current director general. The actual date of change-over will be announced in the near future and is expected to take place in the next 6 months.
Smith said, ‘I congratulate Carlos Seré, John McDermott [ILRI deputy director geneneral-research] and all ILRI staff for their work in making this institute such a strong player in livestock for development. Every member of staff has a contribution to make. My commitment is to take ILRI to even higher heights. I am excited about coming here and look forward to working with all of you. I hope I can demonstrate that I earn your trust and hard work.’
Seré commented, ‘I have known Jimmy for ten years and have learned to appreciate his many talents. He is familiar with important constituencies of livestock research and understands our partners well. We appreciate how strongly he has promoted the global livestock agenda in his work for CIDA and the World Bank and we believe he brings a number of important assets to the family. We will support him completely.’
ILRI Board Chair Hove said: ‘Jimmy Smith has an impeccable track record in developing extensive networks in the livestock sector globally and with development partners around the world. He is familiar with the CGIAR reform process and the international agricultural research agenda. We have full confidence that Jimmy Smith will build upon the strong ILRI foundation and provide the leadership and vision to propel ILRI to greater heights.’
Click on the slide presentation below to watch Smith’s presentation to the ILRI community.
Congratulatiions to the BOD of ILRI for having the visiion and confidence in appointing Dr Jimmy Smith to position of leadership as the Director General.
Jimmy not only have the educational background, skills, training and experience for the position but more importanly he has the positive ATTITUDE to take ILRC to a “higher level as an international research and development centre”.
Congratulations to Jimmy and ILRI’s Board for the appointment. I recall that Jimmy did a great job with the Small Ruminant initiative and trust that he will do likewise as DG.
From his native Guyana, I congratulate Jimmy Smith on this important achievement. I wish him and ILRI much success in the realisation of livestock outcomes.
Jimmy: Congratulation from CAAS of China, I wish you a great success in you new position and develop a strongger partnership with China in livestock research and cooperation.
Acting Director General
Department of International Cooperation
Congratulations, Jimmy! You bring with you great leadership and vision on the intimate relationship between human and animal health. You are emblematic of the “One Health” approach, which I am sure will move forward with you at the helm of ILRI.
Wishing you continued success in your new endeavors. I look forward to collaborating with you in matters related to veterinary public health in the age of “one health”.
Congratulations, Jimmy. You have all it takes to move the Institute to the next level of greatness. I pray for your good health and wisdom.Looking forward to collaborate with you in the area of Crop/livestock farming system.