Sam Thevasagayam

Deputy Director, Livestock Team, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Dr. Samuel Thevasagayam leads the program’s livestock portfolio, overseeing implementation of the foundation’s strategy for animal health, animal production, and animal systems. Before joining the foundation in 2012, Sam spent most of his career within the pharmaceutical industry, working in clinical development, regulatory affairs, business development, and external research alliances.


Sam was responsible for the development and registration of several drugs and vaccines (human and animal) in North American, European, and international markets. Previously, he served as the director of research and development for global alliances for livestock veterinary medicine with GALVmed, a not-for-profit animal health organization. He spent his early career teaching and practicing companion animal internal medicine before spending five years in veterinary virology research at the United Kingdom’s Pirbright Institute.


Sam holds a degree in veterinary medicine and surgery from the University of Peradeniya in Sri Lanka, a Ph.D. in veterinary virology for his research on foot-and-mouth disease virus at the Pirbright Institute, and an MBA from the Säid Business School at the University of Oxford. Sam is a fellow of the Royal Society of Biology.