Pedro A. Sanchez is Research Professor of Tropical Soils at the University of Florida Soil & Water Sciences Department and core faculty of the Institute for Sustainable Food Systems. Prior to that he was Director of the Agriculture and Food Security Center and Senior Research Scholar at Columbia University’s Earth Institute.
He served as Director General of the World Agroforestry Center (ICRAF) headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya from 1991-2001, as co-chair of the United Nations Millennium Project Hunger Task Force from 2002 – 2005, and as director of the Millennium Villages Project from 2004 – 2010. Sanchez is Professor Emeritus of Soil Science and Forestry at North Carolina State University, where he served in the faculty from 1968-1991. He has lived in Cuba, the Philippines, Peru, Colombia and Kenya, and supervised research programs in over 25 countries of Latin America, Southeast Asia, and Africa.
Sanchez has written groundbreaking books on tropical soil science and hunger, and has received honorary Doctor of Science degrees from the Catholic University of Leuven (Belgium), Guelph University (Canada), Ohio State University and North Carolina State University. Sanchez was anointed Chief by the Luo in western Kenya with the name of Odera Akang’o, and by the Ikaram of southern Nigeria with the name of Atunluse. He is the 2002 World Food Prize laureate, a 2004 MacArthur Fellow, and was elected to the US National Academy of Sciences in 2012. At his induction, the president of the Academy summarized why he was elected: “Sanchez has led path-breaking research on soil management for improved food production in the tropical world. His work has influenced research in agronomy, ecology, and changed the way technology is used to increase food production.”