United Nations Assistant Secretary-General
Acting Head, Executive Director, UNITAR - Sally Fegan-Wyles
In September 2012, Ms. Sally Fegan-Wyles of Ireland was appointed by the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as UN Assistant Secretary-General, Acting Head and Executive Director of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research. Her mandate as Acting Head and Executive Director of UNITAR is to lead and support the work of UNITAR, and, support the Secretary-General's initiative to consolidate seven existing UN entities for training, research and knowledge sharing.
Ms. Fegan-Wyles has more than 30 years of experience within the United Nations system, holding various managerial positions in different UN entities both in the field and at Headquarters. Her most recent position was Senior Adviser on System-Wide Coherence in the Office of the Deputy Secretary-General where she led the inter-agency team that prepared the blueprint for the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women). She also led the team to establish the process to merge the four constituent departments, institutions and programmes that were dealing with the issue of gender equality and the empowerment of women.
Before joining the Office of the Deputy Secretary-General, Ms. Fegan-Wyles was Director of the United Nations Development Group Office (UNDGO) from 2001 to 2008, where she was responsible for guiding and supporting the UN’s reform efforts at the country level. As Director of UNDGO, she led the efforts in providing policy support to the UN Country Teams and the UN Resident Coordinators in 134 countries, and in implementing the on-going UN reform plan, including the “One UN” approach being piloted in eight countries.
Prior to that, she was mainly working in Africa for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) as Resident Representative and the United Nations Resident Coordinator in the United Republic of Tanzania from 1998 to 2001, for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) from 1980 to 1998, first as Health Economist, then Programme Officer and finally as Representative in Uganda (1986-1991), and Zimbabwe (1991-1995). In 1995, she joined the Change Management Team in UNICEF New York, where she was responsible for field management effectiveness.
Born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1954, Ms. Fegan-Wyles graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from Trinity College, Dublin, and a Master of Science in social planning in developing countries (with distinction) from the London School of Economics. She will be joined by her husband, Mr. John Wyles.