James Okeno – Product Stewardship Manager

James A. Okeno is a plant breeder and geneticist with a PhD from the University of Giessen, Germany, MSc (Plant Breeding) and BSc Agriculture, both from the University of Nairobi, Kenya. Before joining AATF, James was the Associate Director and Business Manager at NEPAD’s African Biosafety Network of Expertise (ABNE) based in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Prior to that he was Policy and Research Associate at the Seed Science Center, Iowa State University (ISU), Ames, Iowa, USA. While at ISU, he was part of the team that initiated the Seed Enterprise Management Institute (SEMIs), an AGRA-funded collaborative project based at the University of Nairobi to enhance the capacity of African start-up seed companies. Before joining ISU he was Director Regulatory Affairs at the Africa Biofortified Sorghum (ABS) Project at the Africa Harvest Biotech Foundation International (Africa Harvest), where he was instrumental in the development of Kenya’s National Biotechnology Policy 2006 and its subsequent Biosafety Act 2009. James began his career as a Lecturer and later Senior Lecturer at Chepkoilel Campus (current University of Eldoret) of Moi University, Eldoret, Kenya. He taught plant breeding, biotechnology and research methods for seven years.  James combines knowledge in plant breeding, biotechnology and policy issues related to agricultural development and has authored and co-authored several articles in international journals in these areas. As the Product Stewardship Manager at AATF, James is responsible for the development and implementation of stewardship strategies/plans and Quality Management Systems (QMS) for AATF products. He also provides capacity enhancement and technical oversight to partners on product stewardship and quality assurance/control (QA/QC) issues.

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