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Abiola Afolayan

Co-Director, Policy & Research Institute
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Abiola Afolayan serves as co-director of the Policy and Research Institute, a department of Bread for the World. She advances global food security by utilizing her background in international development, policy, law, academia, and women’s empowerment.  

Her policy focus includes the U.S. Farm Bill, the Global Food Security Act, Feed the Future Innovation Research Labs, USAID’s Gender Responsive Agriculture Systems Policy (GRASP) initiative, and other federal policies that enable the success of Bread’s policy focus on nutrition, equity, and the environment.  

Before joining Bread, Afolayan advised smallholder farmer cooperatives in Africa on economic, trade, financing, and political risk assessment. She also served at the World Food Programme in Rome, Italy where she managed the external engagement of global public and private sector partners in addressing food insecurity through thought leadership and resource mobilization.  

She also worked as a foreign affairs and women’s issues advisor for a senior member of the U.S. Congress. 

She has served as an adjunct professor of Gender, Conflict, and Security at the Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University, and lectured at Temple University School of Law, International Law Program in Rome, Italy. 

She is also the author of “A Seat at the Table for Women, Girls, and Movements: A Manifesto on Peace and Security” framed around UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace, and Security  

Abiola began her legal career in Los Angeles. She holds a Bachelor of Arts  in English and Journalism from California State University Sacramento; a Master of Laws in International and Comparative Law from Santa Clara University School of Law; and an Executive Master’s in International Relations from Syracuse University. 

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