Dear Grandmothers and Grandothers,
We’re pleased to share this special message with you today from our SLF Board of Directors.
Sarah, Megan, Ruth-Anne and Winnie
Toronto, Ontario, Canada – (February 22, 2020) – The Board of Directors of the Stephen Lewis Foundation, having met this week in Toronto, is delighted and proud to formally announce the appointment of Meg French as the new executive director of the Foundation. Meg assumed the role on February 10th.
Meg emerged as the chosen candidate after a lengthy search process, during which time 107 applicants were winnowed down to one. Her credentials are stunningly impressive.
For the last two years, Meg has been based in Geneva as the global lead for UNICEF’s Every Child ALIVE Campaign, focussing on newborn and maternal health and survival. It involved the coordination of advocacy, fundraising and public engagement supported by partnerships with governments, civil society, NGOs, the private sector, and philanthropic foundations.
For 15 years before that, Meg played a variety of leadership roles at UNICEF Canada, always focussed on international development issues. Throughout that period, Meg raised millions of dollars, dealt with governments, handled communications, led strategy, and visited endless community-based projects at the grassroots of countless countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
Meg has been an advocate for women’s and children’s rights, including for families affected by HIV and AIDS. She even participated in the International AIDS Conference in Toronto in 2006, when the Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign was launched. In other words, Meg is familiar with all aspects of the Foundation’s work and is impeccably suited to provide leadership for the next phase of the Foundation’s expanding future.
Meg comes to the executive directorship with a Bachelor of Arts from Trent University in Development Studies and Women’s Studies, and Bachelor and Master of Education degrees from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, specializing in International and Development Education.
Meg inherits the Foundation in excellent shape. Over the 17 years of the Foundation’s lifespan, some $160 million has been raised to fight HIV and AIDS in 15 African countries, supporting hundreds of grassroots partners. The Grandmothers Campaign has become a movement, and the Foundation has begun to win more and more international acclaim. The Foundation was given vision and strength by Ilana Landsberg-Lewis from its inception in 2003 until 2018, and throughout the past year the Interim Executive Director, Zahra Mohamed, with an inspired staff, has maintained the same extraordinary standards.
There is absolutely no doubt in the minds of the Board of Directors that Meg French will take us to even greater heights. The HIV pandemic is far from over: the Stephen Lewis Foundation continues to have an indispensable role to play.
Co-Chairs of the Board of Directors,
Stephen Lewis Foundation