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The Brenthurst Foundation Appoints Three New Advisory Board Members

14 August 2018

The Brenthurst Foundation has appointed three new members to their Advisory Board: former President of Liberia (and Nobel laureate) Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, former Defence Minister of Colombia Juan Carlos Pinzón, and former Prime Minister of Ethiopia Hailemariam Desalegn.

The new appointments bring with them a wealth of leadership skills along with unparalleled knowledge of political and economic policy in both the African and South American continents.

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf worked tirelessly to promote national peace, security, unity and reconciliation following years of civil war in Liberia where her work earned her the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize. She is the first elected female President in Africa. First elected in 2005 she left office in January 2018. She also served as Chair of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), once again the first woman to hold the position.

Juan Carlos Pinzón has been a leader in both the public and private sectors throughout his career. He served as Deputy Defence Minister, Chief of Staff to President Juan Manuel Santos, and from 2011 until 2015 as Minister of Defence of Colombia. In 2015 he was appointed as Ambassador of Colombia to the United States until he returned to Colombia in 2017 to contest the 2018 Presidential election. Under his leadership, the Colombian Armed Forces carried out its most successful operations against armed non-state actors that included FARC and ELN, as well as paramilitary criminal bands (BACRIM), which set the stage for the 2016 peace agreement. In addition, he oversaw the modernisation of equipment and training, as well as significant improvements to the welfare of those serving in the Colombian Armed Forces.

Hailemariam Desalegn was the 14th Prime Minister of Ethiopia from 2012 until his resignation in 2018. Prior to this he served as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs under Prime Minister Meles Zenawi. With annual economic growth rates averaging over ten percent in Ethiopia during his term, Prime Minister Hailemariam viewed his resignation as “vital in the bid to carry out reforms that would lead to sustainable peace and democracy,” as subsequent and far-reaching events have demonstrated.

As The Brenthurst Foundation heads towards its 15th anniversary, these appointments to the Advisory Board will serve to strengthen its presence on both the African continent and the wider global political stage. Drawing on the experiences of five former heads of state, three former Ministers and Ambassadors, the former Deputy Chair of the Commission of the African Union, a former President of the African Development Bank, former Chair of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, and two members of the Oppenheimer Generations organisation, the Foundation’s Advisory Board offers a wide range of expertise in both political and economic matters.

Founder of The Brenthurst Foundation and Advisory Board member, Jonathan Oppenheimer, had these words to share about the newest appointments: “The Brenthurst Foundation continues to grow and develop innovative new solutions for sustainable economic growth and democratic progress. The addition of former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, former Defence Minister Juan Carlos Pinzón and former Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn will assist us in our work to strengthen Africa’s economic performance.”

The Brenthurst Foundation



November/December 2018








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