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Dr Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri was born in the old Free State province, South Africa, where she received her early education. She completed her secondary education in Natal and afterwards attended the University of Fort Hare where she received her first degree.

She taught for two years in the former Natal province, followed by a period in exile in Swaziland, the United States and Zambia. In the United States, she obtained a doctorate in Sociology and taught at Rutgers University, New Jersey. She was actively involved in the ANC region in New York, serving as a member of both the ANC and the ANC Womens' League branch executive.

Dr Matsepe-Casaburri taught and worked for the United Nations Institute for Namibia in Lusaka, Zambia. Throughout this period, she was active in the ANC Roma and Northmead branches, serving on the branch executive and Women's League. She also served on the National Education committee of the ANC.

On her return to South Africa in 1990, she was appointed Executive Director of the Education Development Trust and was active in the education movement and in policy development for the new South Africa. She was also active in the fields of gender, education, economic development and local government.

She served on the ANC provincial Executive Committee in the Free State and remains a member of the ANC National Executive Committee and of its Legislature and Governance Committee.


Dr Matsepe-Casaburri is a researcher, writer, educator, gender and development specialist. She maintains an interest in gender research, the economic empowerment of women and issues relating to children and broadcasting.

Current positions: 

Minister for Posts, Telecommunications and Broadcasting (since June 1999) 
Member of the Board of Governors of the International Research Centre, Canada 
Founder member of the Board of Women's Development Foundation 
Patron of the Maokeng Community Development Trust 
Patron of Eskom/Sowetan Woman of the Year Award 
Patron of Shoprite/Checkers SABC Woman of the Year Award 
Career Milestones: 

First woman Premier in South Africa (Premier of the Free State Province) 
First Woman and first black person to chair the SA Broadcasting Corporation 
First woman and first black chairperson of the Board of Sentech Ltd 
First woman to be appointed to the Board of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) 
Former President of the Association of African Women for Research and Development (headquartered in Dakar, Senegal) 
Former Member of Council, University of Durban-Westville 
Former member of the Research and Technology Foresight Board 
Former member of the Working Group of the National Forum on Science and Technology


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