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George Ayittey, MA'70

Alumni Gazette Winter 2012

george ayittey
President of the Free Africa Foundation

George Ayittey, MA’70, is a lifelong teacher and activist who has dedicated his life to the argument that Africa is poor because she is not free.

Born in Ghana, he earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Ghana, and then came to Western where he received an MA in Economics. He went on to receive his PhD from the University of Manitoba in 1981.

Ayittey taught at Wayne State College in Nebraska and Bloomsburg University in Pennsylvania. He was granted a National Fellowship in 1988 at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University in California. A year later he left Hoover to join the Heritage Foundation as a Bradley Resident Scholar.

In 1993, Ayittey founded and is now president of the Washington, DC-based Free Africa Foundation. He has been carrying his message ever since through countless lectures and half a dozen books. He is the author of Indigenous African Institutions, Africa Betrayed, The Blueprint for Ghana’s Economic Recovery, Africa in Chaos, Africa Unchained: The Blueprint for Development, and most recently Defeating Dictators: Fighting Tyranny in Africa and Around the World.

In 2008, Foreign Policy magazine named Ayittey one of the world’s ‘Top 100 Public Intellectuals.’

Today, Ayittey’s message is resonating. In light of an Arab Spring focused on the overthrow of long-time dictators in the Middle East, people are taking another look at Ayittey’s thesis. He has held audience with everyone from U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton to rock star/humanitarian Bono to TED conference attendees. From Parliament Hill to the White House to halls of power around the globe, people are now listening to George Ayittey.

Read the full profile on Ayittey in the Winter 2012 Alumni Gazette: http://www.alumnigazette.ca/issues/winter-2012/blueprint.html?page=4

Read the complete story: Alumni Gazette Winter 2012


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