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Sir Fazle Hasan Abed transitioning to Chair Emeritus role for BRAC and BRAC International

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The transition is part of Sir Fazle’s long-standing practice of building strong succession at BRAC


DHAKA, BANGLADESH — 6 August 2019 — Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, founder of BRAC, is retiring from his role as the Chairperson of the Governing Bodies of BRAC Bangladesh and BRAC International. He is transitioning to the role of Chair Emeritus, effective August 2019.


This transition is part of Sir Fazle’s long-standing practice of building strong succession at BRAC. Sir Fazle founded BRAC in 1972, at the age of 36, and served as its Executive Director until 2001. At the age of 65, he retired from the Executive Director position of BRAC and was elected as the Chairperson of the Governing Body of BRAC Bangladesh. Later he was also elected as the Chairperson of the Board of BRAC International. He is stepping down from his governance responsibilities and, in the coming months as Chair Emeritus, he will focus on guiding BRAC’s global strategy and governance structure. 


“For the past few years, I have put a lot of thought and preparation into planning my succession at BRAC. Now, at the age of 83, I feel it is the right time for me to step down from my role as Chairperson and focus my time on guiding the future strategy of BRAC,” Sir Fazle said. 


“BRAC has never been about me or any one person. I may have been the founder, however, our strong foundation and reputation are built on the commitment, hard work, and dedication of our staff. We are grateful and fortunate to partner with Governments, mission-aligned donors, partners, and peer organizations along the way,” he added. 


BRAC appointed Asif Saleh as the new Executive Director of BRAC Bangladesh earlier this month. Dr. Muhammad Musa joined as the Executive Director of BRAC International in May 2019. Mr. Saleh and Dr. Musa will be in charge of all executive management and operational functions for BRAC Bangladesh and BRAC International respectively, taking BRAC’s vision of building an equal world ahead. 


Two very eminent personalities are joining the Boards of BRAC Bangladesh and BRAC International as Chairpersons. The Governing Body of BRAC Bangladesh elected Dr. Hossain Zillur Rahman, a renowned academic, economist, and policymaker, as its new Chairperson. Dr. Rahman is a leading policy voice of Bangladesh with over three decades of experience. He is the founder and Executive Chairman of the think tank Power and Participation Research Centre (PPRC). He was Lead Consultant for preparation of the first poverty reduction strategy paper of the Government of Bangladesh (Unlocking the Potential, 2005) and was a member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Poverty Commission. Dr. Rahman also sat on the Board of the Bangladesh Central Bank. 


Ms. Ameerah Haq has been elected as the Chairperson of the Board of BRAC International. Ms. Haq is the former UN Under-Secretary-General for the Department of Field Support (2012-2014). She held the position of Under-Secretary-General from 2009 until her retirement and was the senior-most Bangladeshi national in the United Nations during those years.


Dr. Rahman and Ms. Haq, along with the other Board members, will oversee the governance aspects of BRAC Bangladesh and BRAC International respectively and provide independent oversight to the Executive Directors.


Sir Fazle started BRAC in 1972 as a small relief and rehabilitation project in northeastern Bangladesh. Over the past 47 years, BRAC has grown to be one of the most effective non-governmental organizations in the world, touching the lives of over 110 million people worldwide. BRAC is a unique ecosystem comprised of development programs, microfinance, social enterprises, a university, a bank, and a range of mission-aligned investments. BRAC now operates in 11 countries across Asia and Africa, with affiliate offices in the USA and the UK. 


Under the new leadership and guidance of Sir Fazle as Chair Emeritus, BRAC will continue to serve people in need with the right resources and opportunities and transform them into agents of change in their own lives.




Notes to the Editor


About BRAC

BRAC is a global leader in developing and implementing cost-effective, evidence-based programs to assist the most marginalized people in extremely poor, conflict-prone, and post-disaster settings. These include initiatives in education, healthcare, microfinance, women and girls’ empowerment, agriculture, human and legal rights, and more. BRAC’s vision is a world free from all forms of exploitation and discrimination where everyone has the opportunity to realize their potential. Founded in Bangladesh in 1972, BRAC acts as a catalyst, creating opportunities for people to transform their lives. BRAC employs more than 110,000 people in 11 countries, with a total global expenditure of more than $1 billion. More than 75% percent of its budget in Bangladesh is self-financed through its social enterprises. Learn more at



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