Tachi Yamada, long-serving polio advocate at Gates Foundation, steps down as President of Global Health Program

Dr Tachi Yamada has stepped down from his position as President of the Global Health Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Dr. Tachi Yamada
Dr. Tachi Yamada Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Dr Tachi Yamada has stepped down from his position as President of the Global Health Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation on 17 June 2011. For the past five years, Dr Yamada led the Foundation’s efforts to help develop and deliver low-cost, life-saving health tools for the developing world.

In his role, Dr Yamada has been instrumental in scaling up the Foundation’s support to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) especially at the critical juncture in the programme as it researched, prepared and rolled out the new Strategic Plan 2010- 2012 which has led to the striking achievements of the past 12 months. In addition to supporting the development and/or scaling up of important new tools and tactics, such as the new bivalent oral polio vaccine, Yamada personally advocated with leaders of both polio-infected and donor countries to help secure support for a polio-free world.

“Tachi Yamada’s leadership and personal engagement in polio eradication has made a huge difference to the programme,” said Dr Bruce Aylward, Assistant Director-General for Polio Eradication at the World Health Organization (WHO). “His drive and vision helped elevate polio eradication to the new level of attention it now has with leaders everywhere – ultimately this is what will secure a polio-free world. The entire GPEI wishes Tachi the very best for his future endeavours, which we are sure will include continued advocacy for the protection of children everywhere from this terrible disease, forever.”

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