Retirement of Dr Irene Annor-Frempong (Director for Research and Innovation)

The DRI, Dr Irene Annor-Frempong attained the mandatory retirement age of 62 years on 7th June 2020. She reached this milestone after 12 years of dedicated service to FARA in different capacities, starting as a consultant, then joining staff as a programme officer, rising to become the Director for Capacity Strengthening and rising further to become the DRI. Over these years, Dr. Annor-Frempong has contributed outstandingly to advancing FARA’s work and reputation.

In line with FARA’s human resources policy Dr Annor-Frempong’s tenure as a regular staff ended on 30th June 2020.   She is currently serving in an Advisory role (as a consultant) for the rest of the year.

Following many discussions and considerations, the Board endorsed the appointment of the Director of Stakeholder Engagement and Communications (DSEC), Dr. Aggrey Agumya as interim Director for Research and Innovation with effect from 1st September 2020.

Dr Aggrey Agumya (Director for Research and Innovation- interim)

Dr. Agumya has worked very closely with Dr. Annor-Frempong ever since the latter took on the DRI position, and previously when she served as the Director for Capacity Strengthening.  The two directorates are very closely interlinked which makes Dr. Agumya very familiar with the programme portfolio under the DRI.  He is also very familiar with the current FARA implementation model and the one FARA is migrating to. In terms of experience, Dr. Agumya has 20 years’ post-doctoral experience in hands-on research and research management, obtained at the World Agroforestry Centre (6 years) and FARA (14 years) respectively.  He joined FARA in 2006 as a programme officer for the sub-Saharan Africa Challenge Programme (SSA CP), which at the time was FARA’s largest programme. In that role he was instrumental in driving the SSA CP’s advancement from its inception phase to full implementation. This involved assembling 10 multi-disciplinary research teams from across the continent and working with these teams to define a compelling methodology for what was essentially a large-scale experiment in institutional innovation with no precedent in the agriculture research domain.

After two years with the SSA CP Dr. Agumya successfully competed for a higher internal position of Technical Advisor to the Executive Director.  He held this position for 7.5 years from 2008 to the end of 2015. In this position he served as the bridge between programmes and the Executive Directorate. He led the team that formulated FARA’s 2014-2018 strategy and operational plan and defended it at the General Assembly in 2013. He and Dr. Annor-Frempong coordinated the formulation of the Science Agenda for Agriculture in Africa.  When the Secretariat was restructured at the end of 2015, Dr. Agumya was appointed Director for Partnerships and Communication with effect from 1 January 2016. This Directorate was subsequently renamed “Stakeholder Engagement and Communications”.   In addition to having a solid firsthand understanding of the work of the Directorate for Research and Innovation, Dr. Agumya commands strong rapport and respect among the DRI team and among FARA’s partners. He has a very strong institutional acumen and memory that we consider to be exceptional in the house.

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