Dr. Eleni wins 2012 Yara Prize

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Addis Ababa, September 6, 2012 (WIC) - Yara International has awarded Dr. Eleni Gabre-Madhin, outgoing CEO of the Ethiopian Commodity Exchange (ECX) the 2012 Yara Prize .

The Yara Prize Committee has also nominated Dr. Agnes Kalibata, Rwandan Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources.

The Committee has selected two prominent African female leaders for their work on groundbreaking areas for the African Green Revolution: effective public policies in support of agricultural growth and profound innovation in agricultural markets.

Both leaders have demonstrated how transformative change can be achieved in a complex and challenging environment. They have applied innovative approaches, collaborating with partners in new ways. Their achievements are fit to inspire other countries to transform the productivity and sustainability of their agricultural sectors.

"Yara creates impact by addressing global challenges. By awarding the Yara Prize, we salute the champions of sustainable agricultural development. I wish to extend my personal congratulations to the laureates," Jørgen Ole Haslestad, President and CEO of Yara and Chairman of the Yara Prize Committee, said.

"The impressive transformational work the laureates are doing provides great inspiration, and this is exactly the kind of development we want to promote in the Grow Africa Initiative, co-chaired by Yara alongside NEPAD and the African Union."

The two laureates will be celebrated at the State Banquet/Gala night on September 27 during the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) 2012 in Arusha, Tanzania.

Accroding ot the Committee, Dr. Eleni was the founder and CEO of the Ethiopia Commodity Exchange (ECX). Her visionary and remarkable leadership in managing the transformation process toward an efficiently functioning market, especially for smallholder coffee producers in Ethiopia was the reason to be the awardee.

Dr. Gabre-Madhin was among The Africa Report's "50 Women Shaping Africa" 2011, was named Ethiopian Person of the Year 2010 and was nominated for Outstanding Businesswoman of the Year 2010 by African Business. She received the African Banker Icon Award for 2012.

It is to be recalled that the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi had won the 1997 Yara Prize and channeled his prize money for female students scholarship.

The Yara Prize for an African Green Revolution seeks to contribute to the transformation of African agriculture and food availability, within a sustainable context, thereby helping to reduce hunger and poverty.

The Yara Prize is based on nominations of candidates who are carefully evaluated by the Yara Prize Committee. The Yara Prize consists of USD 60,000, which will be split between the laureates, a crystal trophy and a diploma.

According to ENA, the Yara Prize was handed out in Oslo from 2005 to 2009. In 2012, it moved to Africa and will be handed out on September 27 at the State Banquet/Gala night as part of AGRF 2012 in Arusha, Tanzania. The Yara Prize will be handed out annually in Africa.