OUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Twum Djin, Goodwater Capital - 
Twum is the Chief Technology Officer at Goodwater Capital, an early-stage venture capital firm focused exclusively on consumer tech companies. He heads the firm's technology strategy, and works with Goodwater's portfolio of companies. Prior to Goodwater, Djin was an engineer at Google for 8 years.

Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro, ADN Founding Board & Co-Chair, President & CEO of Global Fund for Women - 
Dr Kanyaro is a strategist for non-profit management and board leadership.

 

Josh Ghaim, Ph.D., CTO, Johnson & Johnson Family of Consumer - 
Josh 
is responsible for global research and development organization for the consumer group. He is also a member of the Consumer Group Operating Committee and the Johnson & Johnson Research & Development Management Committee.

Hugh Molotsi, Investor; Founder and CEO, Ujama -
Hugh Molotsiis the founder and CEO ofUjama, a mobile platform to help parents form communities to help each other. Hugh also advises and invests in startups and is an active practitioner and teacher of Lean Startup Methodologies. In 2015, Hugh concluded a 22-year career at Intuit as Engineering Fellow and Vice President of Innovation.
 Almaz Negash, Founder of ADN & Executive Director -
Almaz began ADN in 2010 to inform and engage Africans in the Diaspora and facilitate direct collaboration with social entrepreneurs, innovators, and business leaders to invest in Africa. For the last two decades, Negash has sought to improve the quality of life of our communities through both local and global partnerships. 
Dr. Liesl Riddle, Associate Professor of Int’l Business and Int’l Affairs, George Washington University - 
Leisl is also the co-director of GWSB’s OntheBoard program, a fellowship program designed to promote women on  corporate boards. Dr. Riddle has written extensively about diasporas and development, international entrepreneurship, and trade and investment promotion.
Innocent Shumba, Partner, Ernst & Young, San Jose - 
Innocent Shumba is a member of EY’s Assurance practice and has diverse accounting and auditing experience. He is involved in several organizations, including the EY Black Professional Network, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Certified Fraud Examiners, Institute of Internal Auditors and the National Association of Black Accountants.

 

OUR ADN STAFF
Almaz Negash, Founder of ADN & Executive Director - 
Almaz began ADN in 2010 to inform and engage Africans in the Diaspora and facilitate direct collaboration with social entrepreneurs, innovators, and business leaders to invest in Africa. Negash has sought to improve the quality of life of our communities through both local and global partnerships. 
 Almaz Negash Bio - 2017 
Stephanie HeckmanDirector of Finance and Operations - 
Stephanie is the West Coast USA director of Epic Foundation. She is a values and purpose-driven leader and research director with 15 years of experience in philanthropy and social change that promotes well-being in Africa, Europe, and the US.

Ghirmai Tekeste, Sr. IT Business Analyst, Gilead Sciences -  
As a Technical Project Manager Ghirmai led in building the ADN online platform, as well as in implementations of technology. He comes with extensive background managing projects in Software Development and Information Security Solutions.

Debra Pacio, Content Developer & Storyteller 
Debra is a freelance writer and editor for nonprofit and cultural organizations. She has supported marketing, communications, and content development for ADN since 2015. She is currently pursuing her Master's in Education from Stanford University.

 

OUR EXECUTIVE ADVISORY COUNCIL
Kedest TesfagiorgisBill & Melinda Gates Foundation - 
Kedest Tesfagiorgis is a Program Officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and is part of the Discovery & Translational Sciences team focused on the Grand Challenges program, a program aiming to solve global health and development challenges. She serves as an Advisor to the foundation’s Africa team on health research and pan-African initiatives.
Kamran Elahian, Founder and Chairman, Global Innovation Catalyst, LLC - 
As an Innovation Catalyst, Kamran advises various governments on the needed transition from fossil based economies to sustainable innovation economies. In the past, as a global high-tech entrepreneur, he cofounded ten companies, produced 6 exits, 3 of them Unicorn IPOs with a total market cap of over $8B.
 Mussie Haile, Founder and CEO of Moya Technologies, Inc. - 
Mussie is a seasoned technologist with over 20-year of experience including but not limited to Cyber Security, enterprise architecture, identity management, service-oriented architecture and cross-domain security solutions. Mr. Haile is also the founder and CEO of RevoltCypher LLC., a Blockchain platform & services company 
 Dr. Martin Russel - 
Martin completed his PhD on Diaspora Engagement at the Clinton Institute where he remains an affiliate. He was previously a visiting fellow at UNU-MERIT and Associate Director of Diaspora Matters. He has trained, spoken, and written on diaspora engagement in Africa, Caribbean, Central Asia, Central and Latin America, Europe, Middle East, UK and the US.
Duncan Goldie-Scot, Musoni Kenya Ltd. - 
Duncan is the Chairman of Musoni Kenya, Ltd. As an entrepreneur and investo, he has been investing in startup companies in Africa for more than ten years and pioneered the use of mobile payments in micro-finance institutions (MFIs). He co-founded the first 100% cashless MFI and created a company to create credit profiles using mobile data.
Dr. Ade Freeman, World Bank - 
Ade is the Lead Specialist in Trade and Competitiveness, Global Practice at the World Bank, where he is responsible for lending operations, analytical and advisory activities, and policy dialogue on issues related to private sector and SME development, value chains, and spatial strategies such as growth poles, growth corridors, and special economic zones.

Zekarias Amsalu, IBEX Frontier/Financial Consultancy Ltd. - 
Zekarias is the Founder & MD of IBEX Frontier / Financial Consultancy Ltd, with presence in Washington DC USA, London UK and Addis Ababa Ethiopia. Zekarias has been at the forefront of providing exposure of the emerging Tech sector in Ethiopia starting from coining the term ‘Sheba Valley for Ethiopia’s tech space.
Radhika Shah, Stanford Angels & Entrepreneurs - 
Radhika is an Angel & Impact investor from Silicon Valley and Co-President at Stanford Angels & Entrepreneurs a  community of over 1100 entrepreneurial Stanford students, faculty and alumni. She has been an advisor, mentor, co-convener & judge at Innovation Accelerators Startx & Skydeck Labs, US SBA and UN Solutions Summit. 
Abbey Omokhodion, Senior Finance Director IOTG, Intel Corporation - 
Abbey Omokhodion runs a multi-billion dollar portfolio of P&Ls within the Internet of Things division at Intel, partnering with operations leaders to drive strategy, grow the business profitably, scale solutions, and activate new markets.

Serge Ouedraogo, Director of Special Projects - 
Serge is a seasoned financial analyst who advises business executives on strategic investments that maximize financial returns. He brings an extensive background in financial modeling and best practices for budgeting and financial reporting. 

Jenna O’Brien, Watson Institute - 
Jenna serves as the Vice President/Director of Programs at Watson Institute in Boulder, Colorado, a new learning model tailored for next-generation innovators, leaders, and social entrepreneurs. Before joining Watson, Jenna served as a Project Manager for IDP Foundation, focusing on the development and implementation of their social enterprise strategy. 

 

OUR EMERITUS BOARD
Prof. Mammo Muchie, Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria - 
Professor Muchie holds a DPhil in Science, Technology, and Innovation for Development (STI4D) from the University of Sussex. He is currently a DST/NRF Research Professor of Innovation Studies at Tshwane University of Technology.

Chris Folayan, Founder MallforAfrica & MallfortheWorld - 
Chris runs an award-winning global e-commerce company that enables Africans and people in emerging markets purchase billions of products from over 200 of the best US and UK online retailers. Folayan also sits on several boards globally and previously served as Chairman of the Board of the African Diaspora Network from 2016-2018.
Laura Hubbard, PhD, Center for African Studies, Stanford University - 
Laura is an anthropologist of youth, media and popular culture. She has lived and worked in Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa focusing on questions of aesthetics and politics, temporality and youth culture, the links of longing and belonging among southern African cities, and the nexus of media and development.
Daniel Hartz, Envoy, Inc. - 
Dan leads Finance & Operations at Envoy, Inc. Hartz is a founding board member of African Diaspora Network, helping to develop and implement strategies initiatives. He served as the Director of Finance and Operations for eight years. He was previously the senior manager of Golden Mean Capital Partners for nearly eight years.