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Dr Winnie Mpanju-Shumbusho

Chair of the Board and WHO Assistant Director General for HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Malaria and NTDs (retired)

Dr Winnie Mpanju-Shumbusho is a global health leader whose merit, track record, and thought leadership are widely recognised. She became Uniting to Combat NTDs Chair for the Board in January 2024.

Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho served as the WHO’s Assistant Director General for HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs) until her retirement in 2016, leading WHO's work in prevention, control, impact-mitigation, country support, inter-country collaboration and global partnerships. She also played a key role in mobilizing political commitment, resources and action needed to combat HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria, NTDs; and building resilient health systems; including in the founding, governance and efficacy of the Global Fund.

She has also held previous leadership roles at WHO including Director and Senior Adviser to the ADG’s Office,directing the WHO’s Office for Global Fund Partnership and Technical Cooperation, and serving as Director of the WHO’Global HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections Programme, during which led the development of the first-ever Global Health Sector Strategy for HIV/AIDS.

Prior to joining WHO, Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho served as Director General of the Commonwealth Regional Health Community Secretariat for East, Central and Southern Africa(CRHCS-ECSA) where she spearheaded policies and mobilised political commitment, partnerships, regional expertise-sharing and trainings; and considerable resources to tackle the Region’s public health priorities. She led the development of the first ever CRHCS-ECSA Strategic Plan and transformed the profile of the ECSA Health Communityinto a key international health player in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Earlier Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho served as Head of the University of Dar-es-salaam’s Department of Community Health; and as Senior Lecturer & Consultant Paediatrician at University of Dar-es-salaam Muhimbili College of Health Sciences. During this time, she also served as chief public health adviser to the Ministry of Health of Tanzania. She was co-founder of various national public health programmes; member of the Tanzania National Urban Water Authority and Treasurer of the Medical Association of Tanzania.

She also served as International Monitor of multi-country clinical trials for medicines and vaccines, including the first ever Malaria Vaccine (SPF66) Clinical Trial and Artemether Clinical Trial; all on behalf WHO and TDR.

Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho is a former Board Chair of the RBM Partnership to end Malaria where she strengthened the Partnership’s governance, management, resource mobilization, advocacy, communication and country support;and former Board member of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria. She is a Co-Chair of the Lancet Commission on Malaria Eradication; member of the Panel for a Global Public Health Convection; and Board member of the University of California in San Francisco Institute for Global Health Sciences, MEI.

She has also served as a member of various international boards, including the UNICEF/UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research & Training in Tropical Diseases Board, UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board, UNITAID Board; and the International Corporate Health Leadership Council.

Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho is a co-founder, member of the board of directors; and volunteer for the not-for-profit organization Adventures in Health, Education and Agricultural Development (AHEAD Inc.).

She has won various leadership, humanitarian and academic awards; and has published widely.

Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho holds a Doctor of Medicine Degree from the University of Dar-es-salaam (UDSM); Master of Public Health Degree from Tulane University, New Orleans, USA; Master of Medicine Degree (Paediatrics&Child Health) from UDSM; and she is a Hubert H. Humphrey North-South Fellowship (a Fulbright Program) Alumna.

Dr Winnie Mpanju-Shumbusho headshot