Herbert is a national of Sierra Leone. He has been an advisor to the Government of Sierra Leone in its transition from post-conflict to normal development and at the forefront of efforts to ensure the application of human rights in the operations of the extractive industry. His prior career spans 35 years of development work in fragile countries for the United Nations Development Program. His exposure to human rights issues at the strategic and policy level commenced in 1990 with his appointment as Resident Coordinator in the Republic of Cameroon, when the country launched its transition to multiparty politics, and numerous human rights issues were high on the agenda.
Contending with human rights problems continued with his assignment to Eritrea, newly emerging from conflict in 1994. Upon his assignment to the DRC as Humanitarian Coordinator in 2002, the interplay of transnationals and business interests on the one hand, and the application of human rights concerns on the other, produced various obstacles that were a focus of his work.