Gary Lewis

Director, Programme and Policy Division


Gary, a national of Barbados, has over 30 years of working experience with the United Nations, most of which in the field in eight duty stations. He joined UN Environment in early January 2018, formally as UN Resident Coordinator and United Nations Development Programme Resident Representative in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

He started his career in 1987 as a National Officer with the UN Development Programme in Barbados. In 1993, he joined the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and worked in Pakistan, Afghanistan, South Africa, India, and Thailand where he served last as Regional Representative before moving to Iran.
Gary’s involvement in environmental issues began in the context of combating illegal logging, wildlife crime, and trafficking. In Iran, he worked on restoring the depleted water levels in Lake Urmia and countering sand and dust storms that affects vast swathes of the planet. He also focused on elevating the importance of environmental security particularly through social media.

Gary is a published author on the local history of his native Barbados and has written and contributed to many academic articles related to drug control and crime prevention. He has been frequently invited to present on environmental issues particularly those concerning water scarcity, biodiversity loss, and sand and dust storms. See for instance in TEDx Talk

Gary holds a Bachelor Degree (Hons) in Political Science from Queen’s University in Canada and a Masters Degree (Econ) from the London School of Economics, UK, as a Chevening Scholar.

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