World Bank in Search for Kim’s Successor

WASHINGTON, United States – Following the announcement that Jim Yong Kim, president of the World Bank, would step down from his position on February 1 after more than six years in office, the Bank’s board of executive directors met on January 9 to discuss the selection process of the next president.

A World Bank dispatched said the executive directors expressed their appreciation to Kim for his leadership of the World Bank Group and its significant accomplishments during his tenure.

“The World Bank Board affirmed its commitment to an open, merit-based and transparent selection process,” the dispatch emphasized.

The executive directors stressed that candidates vying for the position should meet the criteria of eligibility for the next president, including a proven track record of leadership, experience managing large organizations with international exposure, a familiarity with the public sector, and the ability to articulate a clear vision of the World Bank Group’s development mission.

The dispatch indicated that nominations would be submitted during the period from February 7 through March 14 and that “candidates must be nationals of the Bank’s member countries.”

Following the close of the nomination period, the dispatch said the executive director will decide on a shortlist of up to three candidates and publish the names of the shortlisted candidates with their consent. Formal interviews will be conducted for all shortlisted candidates, with the expectation of selecting the new president before the Spring Meetings of 2019.

Kim’s career has revolved around health, education, and improving the lives of the poor. Before joining the World Bank Group, Kim, a physician, and anthropologist served as the president of Dartmouth College and held professorships at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health.

From 2003 to 2005, as director of the World Health Organization’s HIV/AIDS department, he led the 3 by 5 initiative, the first-ever global goal for AIDS treatment, which greatly expanded access to antiretroviral medication in developing countries.

The Bank has had 12 presidents including Kim since its establishment in 1944.

Featured photo by Simone D. McCourtie/World Bank

Zeze Ballah

Zeze made his journalism debut as a high school reporter at the LAMCO Area School System. In 2016 and 2017, the Press Union of Liberia awarded Zeze with the Photojournalist of the Year award. Zeze was also the union's 2017 Health Reporter of the Year. He is a Health Journalism Fellow with Internews.

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