2nd February 2022
It’s been the highlight of my career to have led the RHSC and, together with you, helped transform what was once barely an afterthought in the reproductive health discourse – supply security – into the focus of new investments that are today reaching dizzying levels. Supplies and the markets and supply chains through which they flow, are now indispensable elements of any serious conversation on reproductive health. It is a reality the Coalition’s founders could only have dreamed of.
And yet, as someone reminded me just a few years back, the struggle to get supplies into the hands of all who need them will never be “won” in the traditional sense of the word. Whatever successes we celebrate today will always find resistance – resistance from those opposed to what we do; resistance from those with competing agendas, and, perhaps most critical of all, the unconscious resistance that comes from memories too short to recall what life was like before our struggle began.
The author Imani Perry recently noted that “… every movement forward needs to be jealously guarded”. And as I look back on my decade and a half at the RHSC, I have come to realize that the most zealous guards are those who believe they are going to battle for the first time. It feels right, then, for me to pass the baton to an ardent, new runner, closer to the start line than I am, hungry for change, and dreaming big dreams.
And so, it is with pride and deep gratitude that I have informed the RHSC’s Chair and Executive Committee of my intention to step down as Director later this year. In the coming weeks, the Committee, with support from PATH, will embark on the recruitment of my successor. I wish them the very best in that effort and look forward to supporting our supplies community in the years to come.