Heifer International Appoints Dr. Patrina Eiffert as Executive Director of New Global Accelerator

By Heifer International

December 13, 2021



Dr. Patrina Eiffert has been appointed to oversee new Power Water and Internet Accelerator aimed at improving the livelihoods of smallholder farmers.

Little Rock, AR — In an effort to support smallholder farmers to reach a Sustainable Living Income, global development organization Heifer International today announced the appointment of Dr. Patrina Eiffert as the Executive Director of its new Power, Water and Internet (PWI) Accelerator. Through PWI, the organization is making a commitment to strategically remove the limiting infrastructure constraints faced by rural communities and provide access to affordable basic utility products and services.

“I am delighted to welcome Dr. Patrina Eiffert as Executive Director of Heifer International’s Power, Water and Internet Accelerator,” said Pierre Ferrari, President and CEO of Heifer International. “Dr. Eiffert brings a wealth of energy access and development experience, and we believe under her leadership this new initiative can deliver a projected 10x growth in community prosperity globally from access to new PWI services.”

As Executive Director of the PWI Accelerator, Dr. Eiffert will oversee Heifer’s commitment to mobilize significant resources by 2030 to create a smart PWI ecosystem to enable rural, agriculture communities to thrive. This includes access to affordable power, water and internet services and productive use equipment and appliances such as crop dryers, refrigerators, grain mills, sewing machines, carpentry and mechanical tools, as well as water treatment, catchment, pumps and irrigation, and web-based market platforms. The global initiative will work across all Heifer International’s Signature Programs in 21 countries, leveraging investments and community relationships.

“Heifer International’s deep working relationships with rural farmers, communities, associations and cooperatives around the world provides a strong platform for the Power, Water and Internet Accelerator to build on,” said Dr. Patrina Eiffert. “Recent, technological innovations, significant cost reductions and access to productive equipment with innovative business models have put the delivery of affordable renewable energy systems, water systems and internet connectivity within reach of last mile communities that are vital for ending global hunger and poverty. I look forward to engaging with new strategic partners and working with Heifer’s global teams toward our shared vision.”

Dr. Eiffert most recently served as Senior Director at NRECA International which has brought electricity access to over 160 million in more than 45 countries. As Senior Director, she drove forward complex initiatives, engaging stakeholders and facilitating institutional and private sector partnerships, focusing on rural electrification and productive use of electricity globally with organizations such as the World Bank and USAID and local electric cooperatives in Africa and Asia. Prior to NRECA International, she served as Senior Advisor U.S. Army in the Pentagon’s Office of Energy Initiatives identifying strategies to increase energy resiliency at 163 U.S. Army bases.

Dr. Eiffert started her career at the U.S. Department of Energy, National Renewable Energy Laboratory under the Federal Energy Management Program to develop the strategy to deploy 20,000 solar energy systems at federal facilities across the United States under President Clinton’s Million Solar Roofs Program. Recognized as an international expert in solar energy, Dr. Eiffert holds several patents in the field of photovoltaic power, solar electric systems.


Since 1944, Heifer International has worked with more than 39 million people around the world to end hunger and poverty in a sustainable way. Working with rural communities in 21 countries in Africa, Asia, and the Americas, including the United States, Heifer International supports farmers and local food producers to strengthen local economies and build secure livelihoods that provide a living income.

For more information, visit Heifer.org or email media@heifer.org.