DAFF appoints a developmental strategist as Director General

12 August 2013

 DAFF appoints a developmental strategist as Director General

At a media briefing held today in Pretoria Cabinet announced the appointment of Professor Edith Vries as the new Director-General for the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. Professor Vries brings to the position a wide range of skills and experience and is best placed to steer the department in the best interests of all three functions.

Professor Vries also brings a significant track record of high performance executive level leadership in the public and private sectors, which includes international research experience in development. She carries the expertise to further strengthen the organisation from being a regulatory department into a developmental hub for the sectors.

Since October 2006 Professor Vries has held the position of executive head in the CEO’s office at the Independent Development Trust (IDT), as well various other executive positions in the same organisation. In this position Professor Vries was a development specialist responsible for positioning the IDT as an opinion maker in the development sector and as an instrument for innovation in sustainable development and poverty eradication.

The IDT is a development agency which was established as a redistributive mechanism and is mandated to support government in the eradication of poverty.

Professor Vries was formerly a senior official in government at the Department of Welfare (now the Department of Social Development) and has extensive experience in the public sector specialising in transformation and change management. She understands the operations of the department and is a seasoned manager and leader with executive presence, which will be used to drive the department towards achieving its mandate. Her wealth of experience, expertise and qualifications attest to her ability to take the sector to new heights.

Professor Vries previously worked at the following institutions and government departments: SHAWCO; private practice; University of Bristol, UK; Harvard University, USA; University of the Western Cape, Associate Professor; Senior Official at the national Department of Welfare; and MTA Consulting.

She currently serves as a board member at the Medical Research Council (MRC).

We wish her all the best in this challenging position and the department has indicated its intention to support her fully.


For media enquiries please contact:

Ms Tsotso Sehoole

Acting DDG: Stakeholder Relations, Communication & Legal Services

Tel: 012319 6196

Cell: 083 265 8728

Email: SehoolePT@daff.gov.za