AAI Statement on the Passing of H.E. Hassana Alidou

On behalf of the Board of Trustees and staff of the Africa-America Institute, it is with profound sorrow that we learned of the passing of one of our most distinguished alumna, professional colleagues and dear friend, Her Excellency Hassana Alidou.

The former Ambassador Extraordinary & Plenipotentiary to the U.S. and Canada for Niger, H.E. Alidou, was an esteemed figure in the field of African studies and a fervent advocate for promoting education, particularly for girls and women, across Africa. Her unwavering commitment to empowering individuals and communities through education touched the lives of countless people, leaving an enduring imprint on the continent’s educational landscape.

In the late 1980’s, both H.E. Hassana and her twin sister, Professor Ousseina Alidou, came to the United States with the support of AAI scholarships to pursue their education, with H.E. Alidou attending the University of Illinois to earn her PhD under AAI’s African Graduate Fellowship (AFGRAD) program. She has served as a key member of the AAI family, leveraging her expertise and influence to further the organization’s mission of strengthening educational opportunities for Africans.

H.E. Alidou consistently advocated for the importance of cultural exchange and collaboration. Throughout her career she held distinguished positions including tenures as the Republic of Niger’s Ambassador to the United States and Canada, author of numerous scholarly pieces, professor at the Graduate School of Education at Alliant International University in San Diego, California, and Union Institute and University in Cincinnati, OH and various senior level positions at The World Bank and the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

In each of these roles, H.E. Alidou worked tirelessly to address gender disparities in access to education and to dismantle barriers that hindered girls’ educational advancement. Through her relentless efforts, she inspired countless young women across Africa to pursue their dreams and break through the confines of societal expectations.

For these numerous accomplishments, AAI was privileged to honor her during our 65th Anniversary Gala in 2018.

H.E. Alidou’s loss is an immense one, and her departure will be deeply felt by her colleagues, students, and the wider community who admired her unwavering dedication to advancing education and empowering African voices.

As we mourn the passing of H.E. Hassana Alidou, we also celebrate her extraordinary life and the transformative impact she had on countless individuals and communities. Her legacy will continue to inspire generations to come, ensuring that her vision for inclusive and quality education across Africa lives on.

The Board of Trustees and Staff of the Africa-America Institute extend their deepest condolences to H.E. Alidou’s sister, Professor Alidou, family, friends, and all those whose lives she touched. Her memory will forever be cherished, and her contributions honored, as we carry forward her unwavering commitment to education and empowerment.


Kofi Appenteng


The Africa-America Institute

Christal M. Jackson

Chair of the Board of Trustees

The Africa-America Institute

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