DCO provides managerial and oversight functions for the Resident Coordinator system. It is based in New York, with regional teams in Addis Ababa, Amman, Bangkok, Istanbul and Panama, supporting 130 Resident Coordinators covering 162 countries and territories.
At the regional level, DCO serves as first port of call for Resident Coordinators and their offices. They also serve with UNDP and the Regional Commissions as part of the joint secretariats for the Regional Collaborative Platforms and ensure connectivity between global and country level initiatives.
YACOUB EL HILLO
Yacoub joined Development Coordination Office (DCO) as Regional Director a.i. on 1 August 2021 after he had completed his tenure as DSRSG/RC/HC in Libya in December 2020. He wrote the nexus/complex emergencies play-book having served his 32 years in some of the UN’s largest humanitarian and most complex peacekeeping operations, including in his native Sudan, Kenya, Somalia, Iraq, Tanzania, the Gulf, Liberia, Libya, among others. Before Libya, he served as DSRSG/RC/RR in Liberia and led the post-mission transition there. He played a critical role as RC/HC/RR in Syria from 2013 to 2016. Yacoub has been the quintessential RC/HC. A Sudan national, he will be holding the reins of the DCO Africa Regional Office for at least four months from 1 August 2021.
Ms. Barbara Manzi has taken up her new functions as the new DCO Regional Director for Arab States ad interim. Ms. Manzi has long-standing United Nations experience in development and complex settings, focusing on planning and delivering services to people. Within the Organization, she most recently served as Resident Coordinator in Burkina Faso and Djibouti, after holding other leadership positions, including Head of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Ukraine, Iraq, Myanmar and Sri Lanka. She also served with the Organization in the southern Africa region, as well as in Angola, Central African Republic, Ethiopia and Haiti.
Prior to joining the United Nations, Ms. Manzi worked in the private sector and collaborated with non-governmental organizations, think tanks and universities on development, disaster management and reconstruction, as well as peace building initiatives.
She holds a master’s degree in post-war reconstruction and development studies from the University of York in the UK, and a master’s degree in architecture from the Universita’ degli Studi di Firenze in Italy.
David McLachlan-Karr brings considerable expertise to DCO, with over 28 years of experience with the United Nations. He held various posts within UNDP and OCHA in Asia, Africa and Latin America, including in various complex emergency settings such as Afghanistan, Timor-Leste, Kosovo, Sudan and Iraq. From 2004 to 2019, he served as Resident Coordinator and UNDP Representative in Venezuela, Papua New Guinea, Jordan, the Maldives and Sierra Leone, and was then appointed Deputy Special Representative, UNDP Resident Representative and UN Resident Coordinator with UNIOGBIS in Guinea-Bissau. In 2019, he was appointed Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General for MONUSCO and Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where he played a critical role in leading the reconfiguration of the UN system in the context of the progressive drawdown of MONUSCO, including through the implementation of the Humanitarian Development Peace Nexus.
Gwi has 26 years of diverse international development experience, during which she has remained focused on those left furthest behind and has continuously leveraged humanitarian-peace-development nexus practice, organizational and technological innovation and strategic partnerships. Most recently, Gwi completed a two-year assignment as the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator and Designated Official in July 2020 in Sudan. During this period, Gwi supported three simultaneous transitions: the transition from the 30-year dictatorship to a people-led democracy, the transition from peacekeeping to peacebuilding in the conflict-affected region of Darfur and the transition from humanitarian-centered UN action to SDG-centered sustainable development as underscored by the humanitarian-peace-development nexus. Most recently, she was instrumental in organizing the Berlin Partnership Conference that mobilized over USD 1.8 billion for Sudan, reversing the funding trend from humanitarian to development, contributing to political and socio-economic stability while protecting the lives and livelihoods of the most vulnerable. Gwi is from the Republic of Korea.
Born in 1965 (Udine, Italy), Mr. Valent holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in political science from Bologna University, Italy, and another master´s degree in International Relations from the University of Sussex. Mr. Valent brings 24 years of service to the United Nations, with the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in the Africa, Central America, Eastern Europe and the Middle East. For the past three years, he served as UN Resident Coordinator in Argentina. Previously, he has served as Special Representative of the UNDP Administrator for the Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People. He has also served as UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in El Salvador and Belize (2010–2015), holding leadership positions with UNDP in the Democratic Republic of Congo (2005-2007) and in Sudan (2002-2005). Mr. Valent also held UNDP positions in Albania, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Comoros, Kosovo and Macedonia.