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Published on: 24/11/2023

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND | 24 November 2023

Outgoing IRC Chair, Dr Robert Bos has been awarded a prestigious royal honour by His Majesty, King William Alexander in recognition of his lifelong commitment to advancing global health and access to water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH).  


Robert Bos awarded Officer of the Order of Oranje-Nassau
Robert Bos awarded Officer of the Order of Oranje-Nassau by Karin Mössenlecher, Netherlands Ambassador to Switzerland

With a career spanning more than four decades, Dr Bos contributed significantly to global public health policy and implementation and played a crucial role in strengthening the WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) which has subsequently become the accepted global system for measuring progress in water and sanitation under the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.  

Dr. Bos has been a pivotal force at IRC since 2013, overseeing the transformation of its Supervisory Board into a globally diverse and gender-balanced entity driving systems change. 

Speaking at a ceremony in Geneva, on 24 November 2023, in the presence of Her Excellency Ambassador Karin Mössenlecher, Netherlands Ambassador to Switzerland, Dr Patrick Moriarty, CEO of IRC said: "I and the IRC family couldn't be more proud of our Chair. This award is well earned recognition of an impactful career as a global champion of water, sanitation and hygiene for the poorest."

For more information: 
Petra Brussee | Head of corporate communications | +31 70 304 4043 |   

Biography Dr Robert Bos  

Robert Bos is a is a renowned global health and WASH advocate known for his unwavering commitment to improving the lives of underserved communities around the world. For 32 years, he served the World Health Organization (WHO) as a Public Health Biologist. His last position was as the WHO Coordinator of the Water, Sanitation, Hygiene and Health Unit. In this function, he headed WHO's efforts in normative water quality work and in monitoring access to drinking-water and sanitation. Dr Bos retired from WHO in 2013 and continued his career as an independent consultant in public health, water and environment, based in Geneva, Switzerland. For 10 years, Dr Bos was a member of IRC's Supervisory Board, the last five years he acted as Chair.

About IRC 

IRC is a catalyst of change, working in every corner of water, sanitation, and hygiene to build and strengthen systems that transform lives. With its partners, the organisation uses its expertise to deliver water and sanitation systems in 8 countries and in 12 partner areas.   

IRC works with local and national governments, businesses, and civil society, and with international partners around the world to promote systems thinking and delivery.   

Its international team is made up of over 129 recognised water, sanitation, and hygiene service specialists and dedicated field staff, based in its focus countries, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Honduras, India, Mali, Niger and Uganda, as well as in the United States, and in the Netherlands.   

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