Ms. Ruhweza is the Africa Regional Director for the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), overseeing a regional program comprised of 13 countries, 600 staff, and a budget of USD 130 million a year. She is currently leading the design of a new conservation framework that brings together work at the national, transboundary and global levels, linking program ambition to delivery for the first time, and making the case for "collective impact" at scale. She is also leading the development of a new system of quality assurance that goes beyond compliance and uses risk management as a strategic tool, emphasizing adaptive management, stakeholder engagement, and continuous dialogue.
Before joining WWF, Ms. Ruhweza was the Vice President of Programs and Partnerships of Conservation International, leading the articulation, development, and implementation of the Africa Field Division Programme Strategy, with a focus on ensuring clear and tangible conservation outcomes and seamless application and synergy with country and global program strategies. She was previously with the United Nations Development Programme as the Team Leader and Technical Adviser for Environmental Finance, Africa Region. In this role, she successfully managed a program supporting 44 sub-Saharan African countries, designed and implemented projects/programs putting in place the right mix of policy, regulatory, and financial incentives to attract and drive public- and private-sector investments towards addressing their sustainable development priorities. The program successfully mobilized USD 600 million over six years, which with co-financing, made it the largest environment program in the United Nations. Most of the funding for which she was responsible came from the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the Green Climate Fund (GCF), and other public-sector partnerships with strict fiduciary requirements. She sits on the Board of the Global Ever-Greening Alliance and is a Sustainable Agriculture Intensification Commissioner.
Ms. Ruhweza brings an extensive experience working at the intersection of conservation and development in Africa and globally, fostering successful partnerships with a wide range of international institutions, including the World Bank, United Nations, African Union, and European Union. She has substantial experience of working with and influencing high-level government officials and other senior stakeholders as well as mobilizing resources from diverse sources, including the GEF and GCF. She also demonstrates a sophisticated understanding of the centrality of farming systems in delivering multiple Sustainable Development Goals.