Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves Announces New Executive Director

Radha Muthiah Brings 20 Years Of International Experience To The Global Effort To Improve Health And Save Lives Through Clean Cooking

Washington, D.C.

June 28, 2011


Alexis Krieg

The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves today announced that Radha Muthiah will serve as the Alliance’s Executive Director. She will lead the effort to save lives, improve livelihoods, empower women, and combat climate change by creating a thriving global market for clean and efficient household cooking solutions. Muthiah brings more than two decades of experience successfully fostering partnerships and alliances in both the for-profit and non-for-profit sectors; leading organizations through transition and toward new opportunities; and developing and executing innovative business models to promote economic development.

Before joining the Alliance, Muthiah served as the Vice President for Strategic Partnerships and Alliances at CARE International, USA. As a member of CARE’s senior management team, Muthiah led efforts to create and leverage the organization’s strategic partnerships with Fortune 500 companies, leading universities and NGOs. She first joined CARE as the Assistant Country Director in India, where she oversaw the programmatic, personnel, budgetary, management, and administrative components of the entire country program and managed CARE’s interactions and partnerships at the national and state government levels.

United Nations Foundation President Timothy E. Wirth said, “A solution like clean cookstoves can have a positive impact for hundreds of millions of people around the world. The world has reached a tipping point on this issue because so many creative people have come together to tackle this problem. I know that under Radha’s capable stewardship, the Alliance will support new approaches and solutions that will create a better, healthier world for us all.”

Muthiah’s experience includes senior leadership roles focused on branding, partnership development, and management at ICF International, the American Red Cross, and Mercer Management Consulting, after beginning her career with the Council on Foreign Relations. Born in London and raised in Kuala Lumpur, she holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in economics from Tufts University and a Master of Business Administration degree from Stanford University.

“What was most attractive about the Alliance and the opportunity to lead it was the convergence of so many of the issues I’ve been passionate about and dedicated to solving throughout my career,” said Muthiah. “I believe that my experiences – particularly bringing together private and public stakeholders and resources to spur development and better people’s lives – will augment the Alliance’s substantial work already underway to bring clean cookstoves to scale.”

“Radha’s experience speaks for itself,” said Kris Balderston, U.S. State Department’s Special Representative for Global Partnerships. “She has demonstrated an ability to achieve results and has the passion, drive, and knowledge to achieve the Alliance’s ambitious goals of helping families across the globe adopt clean cooking solutions.”

Chris West, Director of the Shell Foundation – a founding partner of the Alliance – said, “To achieve the visionary goals of the Alliance requires someone who can work both at the global level to harness the value of innovative public-private partnerships, and at the local level to foster real and growing markets for clean cookstoves and fuels. Radha brings a wealth of experience in both the global and local space, and a demonstrated commitment to saving and improving lives.”

Muthiah will begin working July 1, phasing into the Alliance fulltime by September 1 and taking over from the UN Foundation’s Leslie Cordes, who has served as Interim Executive Director since September 2010.


About the United Nations Foundation
The United Nations Foundation, a public charity, was created in 1998 with entrepreneur and philanthropist Ted Turner’s historic $1 billion gift to support UN causes and activities. The UN Foundation builds and implements public/private partnerships to address the world’s most pressing problems, and works to broaden support for the UN through advocacy and public outreach. Through campaigns and partnerships, the organization connects people, ideas, and resources to help the UN solve global problems. The campaigns reduce child mortality, empower women and girls, create a new energy future, secure peace and human rights, and promote technology innovation to improve health outcomes. These solutions are helping the UN advance the eight global targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). For more information, visit

About the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves
The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves is a new UN Foundation-led public-private partnership to save lives, improve livelihoods, empower women, and combat climate change by creating a thriving global market for clean and efficient household cooking solutions. The Alliance’s ‘100 by 20’ goal calls for 100 million homes to adopt clean and efficient stoves and fuels by 2020. The Alliance will work with public, private, and non-profit partners to help overcome the market barriers that currently impede the production, deployment, and use of clean cookstoves in the developing world. Read more at

Media Contact:
Sean Bartlett, United Nations Foundation