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Anne Waiguru

Economist, Governor

Ms. Anne Mumbi Waiguru is an accomplished public servant with years of experience in economic and public policy, governance, and devolution. Prior to joining the public sector, Ms. Waiguru worked in civil society, specifically at Transparency International – Kenya where she served as a Principal Research Analyst. She also consulted for the National Council of NGOs and worked for the Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC). She later worked as Assistant Vice President for Public Sector at Citi Bank in Kenya.

She served as a Technical Advisor, Public Sector Reforms in President Mwai Kibaki’s government, on secondment by the World Bank, and later by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). She then joined the National Treasury as Head of Governance, and later became Head of the Economic Stimulus Programme and the Director of Integrated Financial Management and Information System (IFMIS) between 2007 and 2012. Ms. Waiguru was named in the 2011 Top 40 Under 40 Most Influential Women in Kenya list, being the only woman in public service to receive such recognition at the time.

In 2013, Ms. Waiguru joined President Uhuru Kenyatta’s government as the first Devolution Cabinet Secretary, where she won a total of 15 awards, including the 2015 United Nations Public Service Award for her introduction of Huduma Centres, which help grant Kenyans faster access to government services. Under her tenure, public procurement reforms were initiated, which included the reservation of 30 percent of all supply contracts to the government for groups including marginalized persons, youth, persons with disability, and women as a means of helping to achieve the progressive realization of the country’s economic and social rights as espoused under Article 43 of the Constitution.

In 2017, Ms. Waiguru was elected Governor of Kirinyaga County, becoming one of only three women governors in Kenya. She became the first woman in Kenya elected Vice Chair of the Council of Governors and Chair of the Council of Governors.

Ms. Waiguru has spoken at the 59th and 62nd Commissions on the Status of Women (CSW), and she has delivered keynote speeches at the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) including at the 74th UNGA sideline meeting in 2019 on ending Sexual Exploitation, Abuse, and Harassment. She also delivered a speech at the Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House in 2018 on “5 Years of Devolution in Kenya: Towards Inclusion, Gender Equality and Accountable Governance.”

Ms. Waiguru holds a master’s degree in Economic Policy from the University of Nairobi. She is married and a proud mother of three sons, Ian, Don, and Wabu.

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