Dr. Endale Gebre

Dr. Endale Gebre, Ethiopian Institute for Agricultural Research (EIAR)-Ethiopia

Dr. Endale Gebre has been working on potatoes at Holeta Agricultural Research Center for more than 15 years focusing on variety improvement and seed quality (tissue cultures). Presently he is the Director of the Agricultural Biotechnology Research at EIAR with focusing on genomics and genetic transformation.

Vice President

Dr. Shawkat A. Begum

Dr. Shawkat A. Begum, CIP-Ethiopia

Dr. Shawkat Begum is an international development professional with more than 20 years of experience managing and providing technical and programming assistance in such areas as food and livelihood security strategies, climate change vulnerability and livelihoods adaptation, disaster risk reduction and small-scale agriculture, as well as project management, design, and monitoring and evaluation (M&E). Shawkat Begum obtained her PhD from the University of Arizona, USA with a major in Anthropology (Applied) and minor in Global Climate Change. At present, she is working with CIP as the Country Representative in Ethiopia


Ato Gebremedhin Woldegiorgis

Ato Gebremedhin Woldegiorgis,
Ethiopian Institute for Agricultural Research (EIAR)/Ethiopia

Senior researcher at Holeta Agricultural Research Center. Leader of the National Root and Tuber Research Program as well as the National Potato Research project in 2006. Developed the Quality Declared Seed Standards for potato and sweet potato in Ethiopia by order of the Ethiopian Ministry of Agriculture.


W/ro Mahlete Tsigie

W/ro Mahlete Tsigie, CIP/Ethiopia

Office and Finance Manager for CIP Ethiopia since 2011. In charge of finance, administration, HR and logistics for the Ethiopia Program. She has a B.A. Accounting degree and more than 20 years of experience wiring with International NGO’s in managing operations.

North Africa Representative

Dr. Nouri Khamassy National Agricultural Research Institute of Tunisia (INRAT)/Tunisia

Since 1990, the head of the potato research program and member of the National Potato Research Planning Committee (PRPC). Members of the PRPC were representatives of potato sector: Producers, Commercials, Extension and Researches and Education. Contributed to potato research programs established as top priorities to promote potato production in Tunisia.

East & Central Africa Representative

SAM_0453Dr. Moses Nyongesa, Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO)/Kenya
Dr. Moses Nyongesa holds a PhD in Crop Science from University of Wales (Bangor), UK; MSc in Nematology from Gent University, Belgium and a BSc in Agriculture from the University of Nairobi. He is a potato researcher working for the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO). Since joining KALRO (previously KARI) twelve years ago, Dr. Nyongesa’s research efforts has been towards integrated management strategies for potato diseases. Dr. Nyongesa’s has been consulting various agencies working in the East and Central Africa region on potato issues.

Southern Africa Representative

Dr. Sunette Laurie, Agricultural Research Council (ARC) Vegetable and Ornamental Plant Institute/South Africa

Dr. Sunette Laurie, Agricultural Research Council (ARC) Vegetable and Ornamental Plant Institute/South Africa

Dr. Sunette Laurie is working as a plant breeder at the ARC-Roodeplaat VOPI managing the sweet potato breeding and technology transfer program, and also the crop-based approach program to address vitamin A deficiency. Her major activities are coordinating of research trials, since 1994, to evaluate newly developed orange-fleshed sweet potato lines and varieties, coordinating production of virus-tested sweet potato stock material for the sweet potato industry, and coordination of training and technology to role players in the implementation of the food-based approach.

West Africa Representative

neu2 Dr. Some Koussao, Institut de l’Environnement et de Recherches Agricoles/Burkina Faso

Root and Tuber Plant breeder with main focus on sweetpotato breeding, coordination of root and tuber program.

International Potato Center Representative

Dr. Elmar Schulte-Geldermann, CIP Nairobi/Kenya

Dr. Elmar Schulte-Geldermann, CIP Nairobi/Kenya

Dr. Elmar Schulte-Geldermann is the Leader Seed Potato for Africa Program, at the International Potato Center, (CIP), based at the Sub Saharan Africa regional office in Nairobi, Kenya. He holds a PhD in Agronomy from the Faculty of Sustainable and Organic Agriculture Systems at Kassel University, Germany. He joined CIP-SSA in April 2009 as Integrated Crop Management Specialist, supported by the Integrated Expert Program of CIM Germany. In August 2012 he took over his current position being responsible for the implementation of CIP’s potato research portfolio in SSA. One strong focus of his work in recent years has been on the improvement of potato seed systems and seed qualities in SSA.

Outgoing President

Dr. Jan Low

Dr. Jan Low, CIP Nairobi/Kenya

Dr. Jan Low is a principal scientist with the International Potato Center (based in Nairobi, Kenya), co-leading the Sweetpotato for Profit and Health Initiative which seeks to improve the lives of 10 million African household in 17 sub-Saharan African countries by 2020 through the diversified use of improved varieties of sweetpotato. Her research interests have focused on the integration of nutritional concerns into agricultural projects and she has been involved in action research studies exploring how to effectively deliver vitamin A rich orange-fleshed sweetpotato so that nutrition or income outcomes are improved. She served as APA President from 2011-2013.