Dr. Wilson Songa is a Senior Advisor for Strategy and Partnerships at Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture, where he is at the helm of strategy and partnerships, scaling up Syngenta Foundation’s impact in Kenya and across the region, through partnerships with government, seed industry, and agriculture-sector stakeholders, harmonization of programs on Seed systems across the EAC and COMESA regions, and farmer access and linkages to markets. He brings over 19 years of experience in the Agriculture sector, particularly in national agricultural research systems and at senior management at various institutions and government ministries, representing Kenya in various capacities at local, regional, and global agriculture sector committees and forums.
Dr. Songa has served as Agriculture Secretary and Principal Secretary in the Kenyan Ministry of Agriculture, Managing Director of Kenya’s Horticultural Crops Development Authority, and as CEO and Secretary of the Pest Control Products Board. He has also held various senior leadership and research roles at the Kenya Plant Health Inspectorate Services (KEPHIS) and at the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI). His contributions to agricultural transformation in Kenya include the formulation and implementation of policies such as the 2005-2009 Agricultural Sector Revitalization Strategy, the 2010-2013 Agricultural Sector Development Strategy, the National Biotechnology Policy, and Kenya’s Industrialization and Transformation Program in 2015, developed while serving as Principal Secretary at the Ministry of Industrialization and Enterprise Development. He also brought Kenya into compliance with the EU’s Good Agricultural Practice (EUREP GAP) Standards.
Dr. Songa has served on the board of various organizations including TechnoServe Kenya, Agriculture and Climate Risk Enterprise, and the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation in the Netherlands.
A seasoned researcher in the Agricultural sector, Dr. Songa has over 36 publications in refereed journals, technical reports, and refereed conference proceedings.
He has received various awards and commendations including the Best Performing Ministry Award in 2005-2006, and the Second Best Performing Ministry Award in 2009-2010 at the Ministry of Agriculture, as well as State commendation, awarded with the Moran of the Burning Spear (MBS) and Order of the Grand Warrior (OGW) medals by the President of the Republic of Kenya.
Dr. Wilson Songa holds a PhD in Plant Pathology from the University of Reading, UK, a Master of Science in Crop Science from Wageningen Agricultural University in the Netherlands, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture from the University of Nairobi, and has attended various professional development programs.