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Leona Ba is Vice President, Head of Development and Evaluation for Olam Cocoa, the leading originator of cocoa beans and a globally leading processor of cocoa powders, cocoa masses and cocoa butters. As a member of the Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability team, she ensures that interventions to improve the lives of cocoa producing communities are successful. She is an experienced organizational development and evaluation professional with more than 20 years of experience in planning and evaluating the performance and effectiveness of programmes in a wide variety of sectors including agriculture, education, institutional capacity building, and emergency response with clients such as the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the United States State Department, United Nations agencies, Plan International, and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC). Leona designs and implements customized interventions based on thorough assessments. Such interventions may include strategy development with detailed action plans, programme design, establishing systems (e.g. monitoring, evaluation and learning), training, coaching and mentoring, and/or the development of communities of practice to promote learning and the application of newly acquired knowledge and skills.

Leona holds a Master in Agriculture from the University of Maryland and a doctorate in Human Resource Development/Organizational Development from the George Washington University. She is fluent in English and French.