UNAIDS welcomes Gunilla Carlsson

GENEVA, 18 May 2019—UNAIDS warmly welcomes the appointment by the United Nations Secretary-General of Gunilla Carlsson as Executive Director, a.i., of UNAIDS. Ms Carlsson joined UNAIDS in February 2018 as the Deputy Executive Director for Management and Governance and Assistant Secretary-General of the United Nations.

Ms Carlsson provides strategic direction to management functions and is leading UNAIDS’ work in promoting effective governance of the Joint Programme and ensuring that UNAIDS continues to serve as a pathfinder for United Nations reform.

“It is a great honour for me to serve UNAIDS as acting Executive Director at such a pivotal time for the Joint Programme, the United Nations and global health. The AIDS response cannot afford to be at a standstill,” said Ms Carlsson. “Human rights, gender equality and diversity must be at the centre of all we do. I look forward to continuing to work hand in hand with communities, staff and partners around the globe to achieve the 2020 targets and ultimately end AIDS.”

Prior to joining UNAIDS, Ms Carlsson served as an elected member of the Swedish Parliament and as the Minister for International Development Cooperation. She also served as an elected member of the European Parliament. Ms Carlsson was the Chair of the Swedish-initiated Commission on Climate Change and Development. She was appointed by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to a high-level panel for global sustainability ahead of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development and served on the United Nations High-Level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. Ms Carlsson is an affiliated member of the board of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, and has served as its Vice-Chair since June 2017.

A strong leader in global health and development, Ms Carlsson has expertise in policy development on foreign policy, human rights, employment, research, security and defence. She also has extensive experience in the development and implementation of policy reforms and efficiency and accountability in complex organizations, including the private sector.

The process for the nomination of the next UNAIDS Executive Director is ongoing. The Executive Director will be appointed by the United Nations Secretary-General based on recommendations made by the Committee of Cosponsoring Organizations. A search committee established by the UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board (PCB) and chaired by Yury Ambrazevich, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Belarus to the United Nations Office and other International Organizations in Geneva, is preparing a shortlist of candidates for discussion by the PCB.


The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) leads and inspires the world to achieve its shared vision of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. UNAIDS unites the efforts of 11 UN organizations—UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, UNDP, UNFPA, UNODC, UN Women, ILO, UNESCO, WHO and the World Bank—and works closely with global and national partners towards ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals. Learn more at unaids.org and connect with us on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube. Read more via UNAIDS