Long legacy left by former UN leader
The whole world seemed to feel sadness when one of its greatest men passed away on Aug 18.
The former United Nations (UN) secretary-general and Nobel Peace Prize winner, died at the age of 80 in Switzerland.
Born in Ghana, Annan joined the UN in 1962 and worked as an administrator.
It took him 34 years to work his way up through the organization to become its leader. He was the first sub-Saharan African to hold the position.
During his career, Annan was known by many as a champion for peace and human rights.
"In many ways, Kofi Annan was the United Nations," said current UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.
"He rose through the ranks to lead the organization into the new millennium with matchless dignity and determination."
During his two five-year terms, he made the UN play a bigger role in the modern world.
He worked to deal with conflicts around the world and also made reforms to improve the UN's efforts in peacekeeping, human rights, and counterterrorism.
He also helped create the Millennium Development Goals, which contributed to significant improvements in health, education, and human welfare in many countries.
The initiative was so successful that it was succeeded by the even more ambitious Sustainable Development Goals.
These achievements led Annan and the UN to share the Nobel Peace Prize in 2001 for helping the world become a safer and better place.
Annan was awarded for his efforts to make changes to the UN and focus it on human rights.
But his career wasn't smooth all the way.
He said that one of his biggest regrets was not being able to stop the US-led war on Iraq in 2003, which he believed was illegal.
"I think that my darkest moment was the Iraq war, and the fact that we could not stop it," Annan said in a 2013 interview with Time magazine.
He retired in 2006, but that didn't mean he spent the rest of his days relaxing.
Instead, Annan continued to do good things. He participated in the Elders, a group of global leaders working for peace and human rights, which was founded by late South African President Nelson Mandela.
In 2007, Annan founded the Kofi Annan Foundation, which works to promote human rights.
He also helped promote more productive and sustainable agriculture and good governance across Africa.
"With his passing, Annan leaves a towering legacy of a world diplomat and humanitarian who will be remembered for his lifelong dedication to peace and human rights," commented Quartz.