Aline O’ConnorBoard Secretary
Aline O’Connor is the Founder and Director of Agri Experience, Ltd.,a Nairobi-based consulting firm focused on seed systems development in Africa and developing a new generation of African seed sector specialists on the continent. Prior to Agri Experience, Ms. O’Connor was the CEO and co-founder of Channel Bio Corporation, a large American seed company. Her work in Africa since 2007 has taken her to 17 countries and 150+ field visits with African seed companies, including as a consultant for AGRA’s Program for Africa’s Seed Systems, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and various projects funded by UKAID and USAID. She authored The African Seed Company Toolbox, which was underwritten by The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Over 5,000 copies have been downloaded or distributed in hard copy to seed company professionals. Ms. O’Connor taught for six years at the University of Nairobi’s Seed Enterprise Management Institute (SEMIs) and for seven years in the PhD crop breeding program at the University of Legon (Ghana) at the West African Center for Crop Improvement. In addition to 28+ years in the seed sector, she spent 10 years in the international commercial finance sector, rising to the level of Vice President at First Chicago Corporation, now part of J.P. Morgan. Ms. O’Connor has served on the Investment Committee of the African Seed Investment Fund, the Investment Sub-Committee of AgDevCo’s Smallholder Development Unit, and on the Board of Directors of Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Georgetown University, and an MBA in Finance from the University of Chicago.