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Ian Chesterman

Chief of Party


MSc, Land and Water Management, Cranfield University, United Kingdom
Higher National Diploma, Agriculture/Livestock, Shuttleworth College, United Kingdom


Ian Chesterman has over 30 years of emerging market and market systems transformation experience, including over 10 years as a Chief of Party (COP) on USAID-funded food security and agriculture projects in East Africa. He currently serves as COP on the Feed the Future Transforming Agriculture Activity, a program focused on making Ethiopia’s food and agriculture systems more competitive, inclusive, sustainable, and resilient.  In this capacity, he oversees the overall administration and management of the program, ensuring it achieves its expected results on time, on scope, and within budget.

Prior to joining RTI, Mr. Chesterman served as COP on the Feed the Future Ethiopia Value Chain Activity, where he led a team to deliver transformational change to 371,800 smallholder farmers across 116 woredas in Ethiopia. He also served as COP of the USAID/Kenya Horticulture Competitiveness Project, collaborating closely with private sector actors in the agricultural food system to improve the livelihoods of over 255,000 farmers, with a strong focus on the empowerment of women and youth.  As Technical Director for the USAID/Ethiopia Agribusiness Trade Expansion Program, he led a technical team in developing 50 private sector partnerships in Ethiopia with commercial businesses, farming organizations, and cooperatives.

Mr. Chesterman also has experience in private-sector commercial agribusiness, managing outgrowers and production operations for exporters in Kenya, Zimbabwe, South Africa, and Zambia, overseeing production and processing operations of the largest vegetable exporter in southern Africa. Throughout his career, he has collaborated extensively with government ministries and agencies, the private sector, research institutions, trade associations, cooperatives, and producer groups.

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