Will Lead Initiatives to Expand Global Mobile Agriculture and Health Services for the Rural Poor
Washington, D.C., July 17, 2013 – Grameen Foundation has announced the appointment of Hillary Miller-Wise as Vice President for information services. She will lead the organization’s efforts to expand access to agricultural and health information for the rural poor via mobile technology.
”Hillary brings a great wealth of on-the-ground experience and vision for using new technologies to qualitatively and dramatically improve the services and opportunities available to the poor,” said Alex Counts, President and CEO of Grameen Foundation. “We believe access to information is an important, if not essential, complement to providing the poor with increased access to relevant financial products tools, and I am confident that Hillary will spark innovation towards this end.”
Miller-Wise was previously deputy director for the West and Southern Africa regions for TechnoServe and also served as its Country Director in Tanzania. During that time, she established two pivotal partnerships with Vodafone and Tigo that helped increase access to markets for smallholder farmers in Tanzania, Mozambique and Kenya, and provided market information to horticulture farmers in Tanzania, respectively. In addition, she was a senior consultant at Development Alternatives Inc., where she led efforts to develop the first mobile-enabled loan processing system of a microfinance bank in South America.
She holds an MBA from INSEAD, where she was the recipient of the Social Entrepreneurship Scholarship, an MA in International Economics from Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), and a BA in Literature from Middlebury College.
”I am delighted to join a team that is leading the industry in the use of mobile technology to reduce poverty and increase resilience among the poor, said Miller-Wise. “The success of our mobile health and agriculture work in sub-Saharan Africa demonstrate the value of these services and over the next several years we will focus on expanding them across Asia and Latin America.”
Over the past five years, Grameen Foundation has been designing and delivering solutions that harness mobile phones and locally-based human networks to help poor households increase their farming productivity and financial security and boost health outcomes. Through the Mobile Technology for Health (MOTECH) initiative, it is working to improve maternal and infant care in rural communities in Ghana, in collaboration with the Ghana Health Service, and HIV/AIDS treatment in India by sending timely updates and reminders to patients and healthcare workers. Other organizations are using the MOTECH Suite platform to care for underserved populations in countries like India, Uganda and Zambia.
In addition, the foundation’s Community Knowledge Worker initiative is providing access to information on best practices and market prices to poor rural farmers in Uganda through a network of trusted local advisors spread across the country. The program has also been expanded to Colombia.
About Grameen Foundation
Grameen Foundation is a global nonprofit organization that helps the world’s poorest people achieve their full potential by providing access to essential financial services and information on health and agriculture that can transform their lives. Founded in 1997, it delivers solutions that respond to the needs of the poor, as well as tools that help poverty-focused organizations become more effective. It focuses on initiatives that can achieve widespread impact and uses an open-source approach that makes it easy for other organizations to adopt them broadly. Nobel Laureate Dr. Muhammad Yunus, founder of Grameen Bank and the Grameen family of companies, is an inaugural member of its Board of Directors, and now serves as director emeritus. Grameen Foundation is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices in the U.S., Asia, Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean. For more information, please visit www.grameenfoundation.org or follow us on Twitter @GrameenFdn.