Ms. Maria Helena M.Q. Semedo
Maria Helena Semedo, Deputy Director-General, hails from Cape Verde and brings her expertise as an economist and politician with over three decades of public service. A key figure in global development, she has significantly shaped the narrative that underscores agriculture's vital role in tackling intricate challenges, from food system transformation to climate change. Semedo adopts an integrated, inclusive approach, fostering cross-sectoral engagement and strategic partnerships to enhance FAO's standing in promoting sustainable food and agriculture systems. As part of FAO's Core Leadership Team, she drives impactful initiatives like the FAO Green Cities Action Programme and the corporate strategy for biodiversity integration in agriculture. Drawing from her extensive experience, which includes roles such as FAO Representative in Niger and various government positions, including the first-ever woman Minister in Cape Verde, Semedo leverages FAO's technical expertise and global reach to advance the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.