Lawrence joined the foundation in March 2007 as a Senior Program Officer, focusing on agricultural research and technology transfer.
His grants portfolio includes projects to develop drought-tolerant and nitrogen-use-efficient maize for Africa, to build biotechnology regulatory capacity, and to develop nutritionally enhanced crop varieties. His career has had a strong focus on Africa, where he lived for ten years, including two years in Mauritania (Peace Corps), four years in Egypt (USAID-funded ag policy reform project), two years in Chad (CARE), a year in Burkina Faso (Catholic Relief Services), and consulting work for the World Bank and other clients in 16 other countries, including six months in Pakistan. Prior to coming to the foundation, Lawrence served as Director of International Programs at the Danforth Plant Science Center, St. Louis, managing projects using biotechnology to develop disease-resistant crop varieties for Africa and India. He has a Master’s Degree in Development Economics from Princeton University.
September 01, 2011 / Lawrence Kent
Millions of farm families across East Africa, including Uganda and Kenya, eat cassava every day, and sometimes it’s the only thing they eat.
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"Our desire to bring every good thing to our children is a force for good throughout the world. It’s what propels societies forward." —Melinda Gates
The Global Fund has helped to deliver more than 190 million bed nets to protect families from malaria.
"The world faces a clear choice. If we invest relatively small amounts, many more poor farmers will be able to feed their families." —Bill Gates, 2012 Annual Letter
"When it come to global health, Bill and I are optimists—but we're impatient optimists. Tremendous progress is being made. But there is still so much we're impatient to see done." —Melinda French Gates
In Senegal, 80% of households now have a bed net, helping the number of malaria cases there drop 50% in a single year.
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