Graduate of the University of Dar es Salaam, from the University of Dar es Salaam Business School (UDBS), then known as the Faculty of Commerce, Stergomena Lawrence Tax was born on 6 July 1960 in the Magu district of Mwanza region. She attended a number of primary schools in Magu and Mwanza, and Lake Secondary School in Mwanza town.
In 1988 she entered the Faculty of Commerce for her undergraduate studies in commerce, specializing in finance and allied areas, graduating in 1991with honors in finance. Upon graduation, she immediately found employment with the Government of Tanzania, in the Ministry of Finance in various positions including finance management, until April 2002 when she joined and worked with the Economic and Social Research Foundation (ESRF) as coordinator of commissioned studies for about two years (May 2002-October 2004).
Then she moved on to a position of Chief Executive Officer in the President’s Office responsible for planning and privatization, responsible for the ‘Better Regulation Unit’ created to house and implement a ‘Business Environment Strengthening Programme for Tanzania’ (BEST). In the next two years, she was promoted to the position of Deputy Permanent Secretary within the Ministry of Planning, Economy and Empowerment which she held for about two years ( January 2006-November 2007) before appointment a higher position of Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Marketing (December 2007-November 2008). In November 2008, she was appointed to a similarly senior position of Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of East African Cooperation, a position she held for nearly five years from November 2008 to August 2013.
It is clear that, from her long period of 22 years of public professional service in Tanzania, Stergomena Lawrence Tax did enjoy the trust and confidence of the Tanzania Government and international institutions that had close working relations with the Tanzania Government - such as the World Bank, Kuwait and Saudi Funds, OPEC, SADC and UNDP, particularly in the periods she was employed by the Ministry of Finance from 1991. No wonder that she is now working with the Southern African Development Community (SADC)!
It is worth of a note that, in the employment of SDC, Dr Tax is the 6th Executive Secretary since the foundation of the organization as a ‘conference’ in 1980, developing into a ‘community’ in 1992. But, even more appreciable, is the fact that, on appointment to the position in 2013, she was becoming a first-ever female Executive Secretary of the organization. At the SADC Secretariat, H.E. Dr. Tax heads a team of workers and specialists all tuned to the tasks of the SADC’s organizational goals of regional integration and corporate affairs both of which are led by her two deputies. In addition to these overall responsibilities, she is personally tasked with all public and media relations, public affairs, protocol and management of special high-level events. She is the custodian of communications, branding and promotional strategies within SADC.