Valentine Rugwabiza

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Valentine Rugwabiza
Born 1963 (age 54–55)
Residence New York City, United States
Nationality Rwandan
Citizenship Rwandan
Alma mater National University of Zaire
Occupation Economist, Businesswoman
Years active 1989 — present
Known for Business, management
Title Rwanda's Permanent Representative
United Nations
Spouse(s) John Paulin Sendanyoye

Valetina Sendanyoye Rugwabiza (born 25 July 1963) is a Rwandan businesswoman and politician who has served as the country's Permanent Representative to the United Nations since 2016.

Early life and education[edit]

Rugwabiza was born on 25 July 1963.[1] She has a bachelor's and a master's degree in Pharmacy from the National University of Zaire.[1][2]


For eight years, Rugwabiza worked for Swiss multinational company Hoffmann-La Roche, first as the head of commercial development and marketing for Central Africa in Yaoundé and then as regional director in Ivory Coast.[3] She returned to Kigali in 1997 to run her own company, Synergy Group.[3][2]

In 2002, Rugwabiza was appointed Rwanda's ambassador to Switzerland and Permanent Representative to the UN Office in Geneva, serving for three years.[4][3]

From 2005 until 2013, Rugwabiza was Deputy Director-General of the World Trade Organization,[1] the first woman to hold the position.[2] She is a founding member of the Rwanda Private Sector Federation, the Rwanda Women Entrepreneurs’ Organization and the Rwandese Women Leaders’ Caucus.[5][4]

Rugwabiza was CEO of the Rwanda Development Board from 2013–2014.[6] She served as Minister for East African Community from 2014 to 2016.[1] In 2015, she was named as one of Jeune Afrique's "50 powerful women in Africa."[7]

Rugwabiza was appointed Rwanda's Permanent Representative to the United Nations by President Paul Kagame in November 2016.[1][8] She remains a member of the Cabinet of Rwanda[1] and was a member of the East African Legislative Assembly for a five year term from 2012 until June 2017.[9]

Personal life[edit]

Rugwabiza is married to John Paulin Sendanyoye.[1][4]

See also[edit]


  • Rugwabiza, Valetine (2008). "Urgency of Completing the Doha Round more Acute than Ever". In United Nations Office for ECOSOC Support and Coordination. Achieving Sustainable Development and Promoting Development Cooperation: Dialogues at the Economic and Social Council. United Nations Publications. pp. 43–45.
  • Rugwabiza, Valentine; González, Arancha (11 May 2016). "Economic integration is helping boost trade and investment in Africa". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  • Rugwabiza, Valentine (18 July 2016). "Africa: Amidst Brexit Woes, Africa Forges Ahead With Integration". The New Times. All Africa. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  • Rugwabiza, Valetine (17 July 2016). "Britain may have given up on the EU dream, but Africa still wants integration". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 August 2017.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "New Permanent Representative of Rwanda Presents Credentials". United Nations. 11 November 2016. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  2. ^ a b c Machado, Audace (29 May 2008). "Valentine Sendanyoye Rugwabiza". Reines d'Afrique (in French). Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  3. ^ a b c "The Senate approves Amb. Rugwabiza Valentine as RDB CEO". Republic of Rwanda Parliament. 17 October 2013. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  4. ^ a b c "Valentine Sendanyoye Rugwabiza". World Trade Organization. 11 August 2017. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  5. ^ "Hon. Valentine Rugwabiza". Yale Young African Scholars. Yale University. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  6. ^ Banda, Honoré (1 July 2014). "Rwanda's bet: Middle-income or bust". The Africa Report. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  7. ^ Ballong, Stéphane (12 January 2015). "Rwanda : Valentine Rugwabiza, de l'OMC à l'intégration est-africaine". Jeune Afrique (in French). Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  8. ^ "Amb. Valentine Rugwabiza has handed over office to Hon. Minister François Kanimba". Republic of Rwanda Ministry of Trade and Industry. 7 October 2016. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  9. ^ "Amb. Rugwabiza, Valentine". East African Legislative Assembly. Retrieved 11 August 2017.