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Haddis Tadesse – ILAE Founder

By Meg    About ILAE

Haddis Tadesse, founder and board president of the International Leadership Academy of Ethiopia, has a passion for public service and a deep-rooted connection to the country of Ethiopia. Although he was educated in the United States, he was born and raised in Ethiopia and is eager to do everything that he can to help advance the people of his homeland.

Tadesse graduated from the Evans School at the University of Washington with a Master of Public Administration. He held several government positions, including the senior policy advisor to Seattle mayor Greg Nickels, before joining the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as the special assistant to the director of agriculture. From there, Tadesse moved to the advocacy team, and currently serves as the foundation’s representative to Ethiopia and the African Union.

In his current role, Tadesse is based in Addis Ababa and serves as a liaison between the foundation and the Ethiopian government.  He is working to strengthen the foundation’s relationship with health and development partners in Ethiopia in so that they can utilize these resources to help reach their ultimate goal – improving people’s health and lifting them out of poverty. Tadesse’s knowledge of the country and its potential allows him to remain passionate about achieving his objectives during his time in Addis Ababa.

The International Leadership Academy of Ethiopia

The International Leadership Academy of Ethiopia (ILAE) started as merely a vision. Tadesse’s passion and knowledge, combined with his care for the future of his homeland, inspired him to take action and to begin developing the first of five premiere schools to be built in developing African nations. ILAE is recruiting gifted students and offering them a curriculum developed by experts that will prepare them for the top universities worldwide. The school is being built on the campus of Hope University in Addis Ababa and is set to open in September. Tadesse believes this school can allow its students to develop the necessary skills to become the future leaders of their country.

“I’m American of Ethiopian descent, which gives me a unique perspective on my work,” says Tadesse. “It’s not just a job for me; it’s a chance to help people of my origin to improve their lives. I don’t know if anything else could be as satisfying.”

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