Press release

IISD Board welcomes new members: launches search for new president and CEO

June 11, 2009

WINNIPEG—June 12, 2009—The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) international board of directors is meeting in Winnipeg this week to discuss important new business, including a search for a president and CEO.

The two-day meeting began with the appointment of three new members to the board, replacing Laxanachantorn Laohaphan, Khawar Mumtaz, and Mohamed Sahnoun who retire after many years of dedication, hard work and outstanding commitment to sustainability and the vision and mission of IISD. Mohamed Sahnoun becomes a Distinguished Fellow of the Institute, as well as former chairman of the board Jacques Gérin.

Board member Stephanie Cairns is also stepping down to lead the search for the new president and CEO to replace David Runnalls, who is retiring in 2010 after a decade in the position.

The new board members and fellows offer a wealth of sustainable development experience in the fields of education, governance, business and the environment.

"Isabelle Hudon, Papa Kwesi Nduom and Erna Witoelar are renowned leaders and bring considerable experience to IISD," said board chair Dan Gagnier.

With the addition of these new directors, there are now 20 members of the board, representing nine countries. IISD's board of directors meets twice a year.

New members of the board:

  • Isabelle Hudon is President of Montreal ad agency Marketel. She was previously President and CEO of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal. Currently, she is Chair of the Board of the Université du Québec à Montréal, the Société du Havre de Montréal and the Fondation les petits trésors of the Rivière-des-Prairies Hospital. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of Aéroports de Montréal and Holt Renfrew Canada. She was part of Canada's Top 40 Under 40 2005 roster, and honored in 2006 as one of Canada's Most Powerful Women: Top 100.

  • Papa Kwesi Nduom is a renowned entrepreneur in Ghana. He owns hotels in Accra and Elmina and has been a board member of the Ghana Heritage Conservation Trust. He has been Ghana's Minister for Energy and was a presidential candidate in 2008. He worked his way through the University of Wisconsin, where he earned his Ph.D. in Service Delivery Systems.

  • Erna Witoelar is Indonesia's UN Special Ambassador for the Millennium Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific. She was the former Minister of Human Settlements and Regional Development (1999-2001) and a former member of the National Assembly of Indonesia. She currently serves as chairperson of the Indonesia Biodiversity Foundation (KEHATI), co-chair of the Partnership for Governance Reform in Indonesia, and an Earth Charter Commissioner (based in Costa Rica). Before joining the government, she pursued a long career in civil society. She is a board member of several civil society organizations at national and international levels, including chair of the YIPD (Foundation for Local Governance Innovation), and advisor to the Indonesian Association of Municipalities and Association of Districts.

About IISD

International Institute for Sustainable Development is a Canadian-based not-for-profit organization with a team of 60 employees based in Winnipeg (our head office), Ottawa, Geneva and New York and an additional 90 interns, writers, and researchers in 30 countries around the world. At its core, IISD supports the integration of economic, social and environmental considerations into decision-making. Its vision is better living for all—sustainably; its mission, to champion innovation, enabling societies to live sustainably.

For more information, please contact Nona Pelletier, IISD media and communications officer, phone: +1 (204) 958-7740 or cell: +1 (204) 962-1303.

About IISD

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) is an award-winning independent think tank working to accelerate solutions for a stable climate, sustainable resource management, and fair economies. Our work inspires better decisions and sparks meaningful action to help people and the planet thrive. We shine a light on what can be achieved when governments, businesses, non-profits, and communities come together. IISD’s staff of more than 250 experts come from across the globe and from many disciplines. With offices in Winnipeg, Geneva, Ottawa, and Toronto, our work affects lives in nearly 100 countries.