Osama El-Lissy was born in Egypt and is a national of the United States of America. He has a doctorate in management from the University of Maryland, a Master of Business Administration from Georgetown University, a Master of Public Administration from American University, and a Bachelor of Science in agriculture production and entomology from Cairo University.
Prior to becoming the IPPC Secretary, Dr. El-Lissy worked for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for almost 22 years. For the past nine years, he served as Deputy Administrator of USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. In that role, Dr. El-Lissy led the national plant protection organization of the United States and served as the country’s chief plant health officer. He also provided leadership to 3,000 employees in the United States and around the world.
Dr. El-Lissy held several other executive positions earlier in his USDA career. These included Associate Deputy Administrator, Director of Plant Health Emergency Programs, and National Coordinator of Cotton Pest Programs.
Before joining USDA in 2000, Dr. El-Lissy worked for the Texas Boll Weevil Eradication Foundation from 1994 to 2000, leading one of the largest pest eradication programs in the world. From 1986 to 1994, he worked with the Arizona Cotton Research and Protection Council, managing large-scale cotton pest eradication programs in Arizona and the southwestern region of the United States.