Catherine Cocco, Chief of Staff (D/DIR), EXM Secretariat
Ms. Catherine Cocco was appointed Chief of Staff of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) in 2003, a key position in the Organization which was created by the new administration when it took office that year. As Chief of Staff, Ms. Cocco serves as the principal senior advisor/counselor providing high-level advice and support to the Director involving political, technical and administrative issues. In addition Ms Cocco serves as the Manager of the Office of the Director and acts as liaison with the Executive Management team.
Ms. Cocco, a national of the Dominican Republic, has collaborated with the Organization since 1977 and has extensive management and administrative experience. She served as the PAHO country office administrator in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and later in Brasilia, Brazil. In her work with the Organization, Ms. Cocco promoted strategic collaboration in support of PAHO's technical and administrative decentralization program and institutional development working with several countries of the Region including Belize, Bolivia, Panama, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Uruguay.
She obtained a degree in Commercial Administration, from the 'Universidad Acción Pro Educación y Cultura' (UNAPEC), a degree in Business Administration from the 'Universidad de la Tercera Edad' (UTE) and a Master degree in Public Health from the 'Universidad Eugenio Maria de Hostos' (UNIREMHOS), all in the Dominican Republic. In addition, she completed a post graduate course in project management at the 'Fundación Getulio Vargas' in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese, and proficient in English.
As Chief of Staff, she contributes to the implementation of initiatives and priorities of the Organization working closely with the Director, members of the Executive Management, Area Managers, Center Directors, Head of Offices, WHO, and international organizations, among others. She promulgates policy guidance and provides implementing directions to Headquarters and Field Offices on decisions made by the Director on a wide range of administrative, business management, and operational issues.
As liaison of the Executive Management Team, she coordinates calendars, activities and agendas as well as the meetings with the Team, ensuring that the strategic, political and managerial issues are taken into consideration and that the decisions made are implemented. In addition, as the Manager for the Office of the Director, she ensures the smooth day-to-day operation of the Director's Office by managing workload distribution among both the technical and support staff, developing and implementing effective and efficient office procedures, and managing the office's human and financial resources to best meet mission objectives. Ms. Cocco coordinates the Director's activities and agenda and supports the Offices directly aligned under the Director's Office.