Dr. Kalema

William Kalema

Chairman - BDO East Africa

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Executive summary


Dr. Kalema is the Chairman of BDO in East Africa. He has worked as a consultant to businesses, government, and development agencies since 1992, playing an active role in the development of the private sector in Uganda.


In his capacity as the Chairman of BDO in East Africa, Dr. Kalema has served on multiple boards within the corporate world:

  • Member of the Board of Directors, Bank of Uganda. 
  • Member of Uganda’s high-level Presidential Investment Round Table. 
  • Board Chairman of Uganda Investment Authority.
  • Board Chairman of DFCU Bank and a Director of the bank holding company.
  • He was a Board member of the Uganda Manufacturers Association (UMA), Chairman of the Economic Sub-Committee of the UMA & eventually Chairman of the Association.


He is a Trustee of the Shell Foundation and of the Investment Climate Facility for Africa. He is Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Makerere Female Scholarship Foundation. He is Chairman of the Board of the Uganda Gatsby Trust, and a Trustee of Kilimo Trust. He is also a Director of the African Agricultural Capital which provides equity funding to agricultural businesses.

He was instrumental in the formation and development of the Private Sector Foundation, now an umbrella body of over 80 business associations. Based on that experience, he helped establish similar institutions in Rwanda and Tanzania.

In 2004-5, Dr. Kalema was among the 17 members of the UK Commission for Africa, an initiative of Prime Minister Blair’s government to develop a long-term strategy for international support for Africa’s sustainable development over the next 10 years. 


Dr. Kalema attained his undergraduate & masters at the University of Cambridge, England in Chemical Engineering and a Ph.D. degree in chemical engineering from California Institute of Technology.


He is involved in the governance of several investment funds:

  • He is a Director of a series of investment funds targeting agricultural enterprises in Eastern Africa: African Agricultural Capital Fund I (Chairman), and African Seed Investment Fund (Director), and African Agricultural Capital Fund II (Director). The combined value of the three funds is US$ 42 million.
  • He is a Member of the Investment Committee of the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund, managed by Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, which has so far provided around US$ 100 million to fund agricultural enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa.