The Directors-General

Qu Dongyu

China (1963)

A world-renowned agronomist, scientist and the son of a rice grower, Dr Qu Dongyu is driven by the vision of eradicating hunger and eliminating extreme poverty in the world. With profound professional experiences ranging from leading academic positions, long-term international engagement and top private sector management, to becoming the Vice Governor of Ningxia and Vice Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, China, Qu is a strong advocate for policymaking, innovation and the introduction of digital technologies to transform agri-food systems and rural development.

Qu is now leading the Organization to be more dynamic, innovative,  efficient and inclusive, for a better world.

2019 -

José Graziano Da Silva

Brazil (1949)

Graduate in Agronomy, University of São Paulo. He led the Zero Hunger programme in Brazil as Extraordinary Minister for Food Security and the Fight against Hunger before becoming FAO Director-General.

2012 – 2019

Jacques Diouf

Senegal (1938-2019)

Successively member of parliament, Secretary General of the Central Bank for West African States, and Senegal’s ambassador to the United Nations, he holds the longest tenure in FAO’s history.

1994 – 2011

Edouard Saouma

Lebanon (1926-2012)

He was FAO Director of Land and Water Development until 1975. As Director-General he set up the Technical Cooperation Programme for the provision of urgent assistance.

1975 – 1993

Addeke Hendrik Boerma

Netherlands (1912-1992)

He was Director-General for Food in his country in 1945. First Executive Director of the World Food Programme in 1962 before taking on the role of FAO Director-General.

1967 – 1975

Binay Ranjan Sen

India (1898-1993)

He was Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and ambassador. The first Director-General from a developing country, he launched the Freedom from Hunger Campaign in 1960.

1956 – 1967

Philip V. Cardon

United States of America (1889- 1965)

Received an MSc in agricultural economics from the University of California. Before joining FAO, he was Director of the US Department of Agriculture.

1954 – 1956

Norris E. Dodd

United States of America (1879-1968)

Before his appointment, he held various roles in agricultural associations and agencies in his homeland. Under his leadership, FAO moved its headquarters from Washington DC to Rome.

1948 – 1953

John Boyd Orr

Scotland (1880-1971)

His proposals for a World Food Board led to the creation of the FAO Council in 1946. Nobel Peace Laureate in 1949 for his studies in the field of nutrition.

1945 - 1948