Hivos welcomes new director

September 22, 2022

We are very happy to announce the appointment of Anne Jellema as Hivos’ new Chief Executive Officer. She will join us on October 1, 2022.

Anne has over 20 years of experience in building global organizations that deliver transformative change. She was born in the United States and is based in South Africa, where she’s lived for over 20 years. She recently worked as Director Public Engagement, Humanitarian and Asia Region for Action Aid International (AAI), where she also served as Resource Mobilization and Innovation Director and Acting Secretary General.

Diana Monissen, chair of Hivos’ Supervisory Council, is very pleased by Anne’s appointment. “Our conversations were truly enjoyable. She feels a close and personal connection to Hivos, and her track record is totally in line with Hivos’ mission and ambitions.”

Agency of rightsholders

Throughout her career, Anne has put the agency and practical needs of rightsholders first in designing strategies for change. This approach is rooted in her years as a community organizer and land rights activist in South Africa. She has worked with social movements, women’s organizations, hacktivists and other grassroots forces across Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East.

Between 2012 and 2017, Anne served as CEO of the World Wide Web Foundation. She managed to help turn this little-known start-up into an influential global voice. She introduced a new digital inequality strategy, boosted the media profile of the foundation and forged global coalitions, such as the Alliance for Affordable Internet and the Women’s Rights Online research network.

Anne Jellema’s appointment follows the departure of Edwin Huizing as Executive Director. Michel Farkas, Hivos’ Chief Operations Officer and acting Executive Director, is looking forward to Anne joining Hivos. “Her experience will be a great asset in ensuring Hivos continues to deliver on the ambitions we formulated in our Strategic Compass, and in preparing our organization for the future. We’re faced with many challenges that affect our work, our sector and the rightsholder communities we aim to reach with our programs: the climate crisis, backsliding democracies, and the (often orchestrated) marginalization and discrimination of certain groups. All this makes it an uphill battle to achieve fair, just and life-sustaining societies. So I’m very happy we now have Anne to help guide us through these challenges – together with our partners and allies.”

We welcome Anne to Hivos!