Dr. Amit Roy has been the president and chief executive officer of IFDC since 1992. Under his leadership, IFDC’s programs have broadened to help create sustainable agricultural productivity around the world, alleviating hunger and poverty and ensuring global food security, environmental protection and economic growth.
Roy joined IFDC in 1978 as a chemical engineer and special projects engineer. He contributed to IFDC’s successful efforts to reinvigorate Bangladesh’s agricultural sector and to prevent a humanitarian crisis in that country. Under his leadership, IFDC developed a working and vibrant market for agricultural supplies and products in Albania where none existed previously. Earlier in his career at IFDC, Roy was involved in research and development of new and modified fertilizer materials, as well as processes using indigenous fertilizer raw materials, particularly phosphate rock. In addition, he participated in team studies of fertilizer industries in developing countries and provided technical assistance in fertilizer technology and processes and production-related environmental problems.
Roy was instrumental in organizing the Africa Fertilizer Summit in Abuja, Nigeria, in 2006. The Summit brought together heads of state and governments of more than 40 African nations and more than 1,100 international policymakers and agricultural experts to address Africa’s soil fertility crisis. In 2008, Roy spoke before the Hunger Caucus of the U.S. House of Representatives about the role agro-inputs such as fertilizers and seeds have in providing long-term solutions to global food security. Roy regularly meets with donors, government officials and development organizations. He has published extensively and presented papers and keynote addresses at numerous international events and meetings.
Roy’s work has taken him to more than 100 countries. He is now leading IFDC in the development of the next generation of fertilizers, which will more effectively release nutrients when crops need them. Roy is also working to expand IFDC’s successful fertilizer deep placement technology (FDP) from Bangladesh to Sub-Saharan Africa.
Before coming to IFDC, Roy was a process engineer at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta. While at Georgia Tech, he developed an innovative thermal storage system for a solar energy power plant and researched basic premises for converting water and carbon dioxide into useful fuels using high temperature solar energy. He also developed an innovative heat shield that was used by NASA in the U.S. Space Shuttle program to protect critical optical and electronic components of the shuttle.
Roy earned a doctorate and a master’s degree in chemical engineering from Georgia Tech. There, he served as a charter member of the Lions Club and was elected to the Graduate Student Senate. He received a bachelor’s degree with honors in chemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Kharagpur, India. IIT honored Roy with the Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2011.