Amb. Macharia Kamau, CBS, was appointed as the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in February 2018. He is a career diplomat with rich experience. Before the appointment, he had served as Kenya’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York since 2010.
As Kenya’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Amb. Kamau was instrumental in developing the Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development as Co-Chair and Co-Facilitator respectively. He also served as Chair of the Peace Building Commission, President of the UNICEF Board, President of the Conference of State Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and President of the United Nations Forest Forum, among other responsibilities.
Prior to that, he served as Kenya’s Permanent Representative to Kenya Mission to the United Nations Office in Nairobi, the United Nations Environment Programme and United Nations HABITAT.
Ambassador Kamau has a cross section of expertise and skills built in excess of 36 Years in areas dealing with Political, Development and Policy Work, Strategic Planning, Negotiation and UN Reform.
He has served at middle and senior levels across a number of the UN agencies including UNDP, UNICEF, GF and UN Transition Assistance Group, all undertaken across several regions in Africa, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean as well as North America.
He served for 16 Years in Senior Country Leadership and Management at UNDP and UNICEF; 7 Years as the United Nations Resident Coordinator and UNDP Representative (Botswana and Rwanda); 6 Years as the United Nations Children Fund Representative (Eastern Caribbean and South Africa); 3 Years as the Chief, UN and External Relations, Office of Executive Director, UNICEF HQ, New York among others.
He has also demonstrated exemplary leadership in global negotiations and has been credited with the super consensus building during his co-chairing and co- facilitator of the negotiations that concluded the Sustainable Development Goals as well as co-chairing the Ad Hoc Group on Forest Financing. He also chaired the UN Peacebuilding Commission and served as a member of the Senior Advisory Group to the UN Secretary-General on UN Troop Contributing Countries. Amb. Kamau also served as Special Envoy of the President of the General Assembly on Climate Change and UN Secretary General on El Niño and Climate.
Amb. Macharia Kamau was also an International Consultant to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the United Nations AIDS. He is the recipient of several awards and medals including the Elizabeth Haub Award, Gold Medal, for Environmental Diplomacy in 2014, and Moran of the Burning Spear by the President of the Republic of Kenya in 2012.
He holds an undergraduate degree in History and Economics from College of Wooster and Masters degree in Social Policy and Planning from Harvard University.
Amb. Macharia Kamau has authored several articles and is the co-author a book titled: Transforming Multilateral Diplomacy: the inside story of the Sustainable Development Goals.