Dr Salim Ahmed Salim served as the first Chairperson of The International Board of Trustees from September 2003 to June 2012.

Dr Salim held public office in his country, the United Republic of Tanzania, where he served in various capacities for 27 years. He was Prime Minister in 1984-1985 and then served as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence and National Service from 1985 until his election to the helm of the General Secretariat of the Organisation for African Unity (OAU) on 27 July 1989. Dr Salim concluded his term of office as Secretary General of the OAU in September 2001 after serving an unprecedented three terms covering a period of twelve years.

Dr Salim has functions and responsibilities in many other organisations at national, continental and international levels. He has also served in the United Nations (UN), where he was elected as the President of the UN Security Council in January 1976 and went on to serve as the President of the Thirty-Fourth Session of the UN General Assembly in September 1979.

He holds six Doctorates including: Doctor of Laws, the University of Philippines at Los BaƱos (1980), Doctor of Humanities, University of Maiduguri, Nigeria (1983), Doctor of Civil Law, University of Mauritius (1991), Doctor of Arts in International Affairs, University of Khartoum, Sudan (1995), Doctor of Philosophy in International Relations, University of Bologna, Italy (1996), and Doctor of Laws, University of Cape Town, South Africa (1998).