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OUR TEAM

 

     Overview

     The SDGs

     Our Team

 

Alain Mugabo

Procurement and Relations Manager

Alain Mugabo serves as the Procurement and Relations Manager. He is in charge of procurement and relations activities and back up back up finance at the Centre. He joined the SDG Center for Africa in July 2016. Previously he worked at the Millennium Promise Rwanda / Millennium Villages at various positions including Procurement Manager, Accountant and Finance Assistant. He has experience in International Non-Profit organizations of 10 years in finance, procurement and logistics. Alain has a MA with a major in Accounting from University of Rwanda (UR) and holds a BA in Accounting from School Of Finance and Banking, and a CIPS Qualification Level 2; currently enrolled in Certified Public Accountancy courses. Alain is a Rwandese native and is fluent in English, French and Kinyarwanda.

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Alain Mugabo

Alain Mugabo

Procurement and Relations Manager

Andile Ngwenya

Communications Advisor

Andile joined SDGC/A in November 2016 as a Communications Advisor, where she leads the development and implementation of business communications, public relations, and promotional strategies to raise the Centers’ public profile. Before joining SDGC/A Andile worked for UNICEF Zambia supporting the Communications section in the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the advocacy and communication strategy to promote respect for children and women’s rights and support UNICEF’s mission in Zambia. Additionally, she assisted in the reboot of the UNICEF Zambia and Zambian National HIV/AIDS/STI/TB Council (NAC) Brothers for Life (B4L) campaign initiative with various B4L Ambassadors including the First Republican President of Zambia, Dr. Kenneth D. Kaunda. During this post, Andile lead the development of the UNICEF Zambia #IMAGINE global campaign, which included the production of a documentary and music video that fostered a connection between Brothers for Life Ambassadors and local celebrities to bring awareness to issues and challenges that children face and reinforce positive behavior, norms and ask young people to stand up and take action to prevent HIV/AIDS, GBV, alcohol abuse and inspiring males to improve their own health – and, by extension, the health of their families and communities. She was also involved in organizing the UNICEF 69th Anniversary Reception hosted by The First Lady of the Republic of Zambia, where #IMAGINE was presented. Prior to this, she worked within Gender and Advocacy at World Vision Zambia identifying areas of research in gender issues which include, gender and disability; community mobilization; child protection and participation; gender strategy development and analysis of gender gaps in World Vision Zambia programming. Furthermore, she had the honor to serve as a Gender and Youth Consultant for the Office of the Vice President of the Republic of Zambia. Andile holds a B.A. in Media Communications with Psychology from Bath Spa University. Andile is a Zimbabwean citizen and is fluent in English and Ndebele.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/andile-ngwenya

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Andile Ngwenya

Andile Ngwenya

Communications Advisor

Ashley E. Hufft

General Counsel & Senior Strategic Advisor

Ashley joined SDGC/A in July 2017 as its General Counsel & Senior Strategic Advisor.  Prior to joining the SDGC/A, Ashley served as the Managing Director & General Counsel to The Millennium Promise Alliance (MP), Inc., a U.S.-based international NGO which served as the operational arm of the Millennium Villages Project (MVP), a collaboration between MP, the Earth Institute at Columbia University and several United Nations agencies.  The MVP was a holistic project working across sub-Saharan Africa to simultaneously address challenges of extreme poverty in many overlapping areas:  agriculture, education, health, infrastructure, gender equality and business development.  As Managing Director, Ashley oversaw MP’s support for the MVP across finance, legal, administration, operational, and partnership/development functions.  The MVP was transitioned to government and local community ownership at the end of 2015, coinciding with the end of the Millennium Development Goals period.  Prior to joining Millennium Promise, Ashley was a partner at the international law firm of Alston & Bird LLP, working first in Atlanta and then New York City.  She concentrated her practice in the areas of mergers & acquisitions, securities regulation and corporate finance.  After becoming a partner there in 2006, Ashley took an 18-month sabbatical from her legal practice to work at an orphanage in Cape Town, South Africa and then to serve as Project Manager for the Millennium Cities Initiative, an initiative of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, where she lived and worked in Kenya, focusing on foreign direct investment promotion in western Kenya.  It was during this sabbatical that Ashley became passionate about ending extreme poverty globally.  Ashley received her J.D. from Harvard Law School, where she was member of the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau.  She received her B.A., summa cum laude, in Anthropology from Harvard College and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa.

Prior to attending law school, Ashley taught first grade in Louisiana as a corps member of Teach for America.  After the end of the MVP in 2015 and before moving to Kigali, Rwanda with SDGC/A,, Ashley spent a little over a year working back with Teach For America, as Chief of Staff for the Kansas City region, and on the challenges of educational inequities in the U.S.   Ashley is originally from Texas, and grew up in Missouri, in the United States.  She has a seven-year old son from Ethiopia.

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Ashley E. Hufft

Ashley E. Hufft

General Counsel & Senior Strategic Advisor

Benjamin Rukundo

IT Manager

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Benjamin Rukundo

Benjamin Rukundo

IT Manager

Carol Uwizihiza

Administrative Assistant

Carol joined SDGC/A in July 2016 as an Administrative Assistant where she provides secretarial and administrative support to management and other staff. In addition, she serves as a receptionist where she welcomes all visitors and suppliers to the organization, answers general phone inquiries and directs them to the appropriate staff member using a professional and courteous manner. She also prepares and send outgoing mail, as well as sorting incoming mail and courier deliveries for distribution. Carol manages stock, receives and store the office supplies, ensuring that they are always available. Prior to joining SDGC/A, Carol was the Head of Administration Department at Business Continuity Plan Ltd taking care of the overall administration, organizing BCP Ltdforums where BCP Ltd advertises its services, Interviewing new staffs and communicating the results, taking minutes in various management meetings and following-up on the matters arising from previous meeting, setting deadlines for resolutions, monitoring all the expenses and income and reporting to the CEO. She was also involved in safeguarding all the companies’ contracts, participating in the marketing of the BCP ltd services and meet assigned targets; in addition, to following up with vendors or stakeholders providing various services.

Carol worked at Access Bank under Compliance and Internal Control Unit where she carried out an important role; she was in charge of Money Laundering, reviewed the Customer’s physical files and updated the customer’s information in the System in regard to KYC (Know Your Customer); thus, mitigated risk attached to customer’s incomplete documentation which might lead to fraud and money laundering. Also she was involved meeting customers for the KYC outstanding documentation and marketed the bank products at the same time.

Business owner, whole seller of a different range of Cell phones; help her husband set up this and took the leadership position. With this, she had the opportunity of assessing and mitigating business risks timely; later she resigned from the business to take advantage of a professional carrier. Carol Uwizihiza is a BSc holder in Social Sciences from Kigali Independent University. Carol is a Rwandan citizen fluent in English, Kinyarwanda and French.

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Carol Uwizihiza

Carol Uwizihiza

Administrative Assistant

Deo Rubangisa

Human Resources and Administration Manager

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Deo Rubangisa

Deo Rubangisa

Human Resources and Administration Manager

Donald Ndahiro

SDGs Advisor

Donald Ndahiro joined SDGC/A in July 2016 as an SDGs Advisor with main focus on Innovations, IT Solutions and Outreach Interventions. Before joining SDGC/A Donald worked as a Team Leader and Project Manager for The Millennium Villages Project (MVP) in Mayange Rwanda. During this time he coordinated the project planning, completion of work plans, budgets, procurement plans and reports; as well as building on strategic partnerships at national level with governmental organizations, NGOs, and private companies to advance the MVP’s strategic agenda. Before joining MVP, Donald served as a Regional Coordinator for World Vision Rwanda, and was involved in the Development Assistance Program for food security funded by USAID, with interventions in agriculture, health and rural income opportunities. Donald has experience in agriculture coordination for both the MVP and ZOA Refugee Care of which he was lead facilitator in the transition from relief to rehabilitation and a development phase of the program, involved with the development of grassroots based district development plans and was seconded at the province level as a planning officer. In addition, whilst working as the Site Manager for the Rwanda Agency for Rural Development, a local organization set up to resettle old case refugees returning to Rwanda after the 1994 genocide, he was able to identify areas suitable for settlement and those suitable for farming, introduced maize farming on a commercial scale and was responsible for promoting mechanized farming and tractor hire services. Donald has a MBA with a major in Management from Eastern Africa University of Baraton, as well as a MSc in Agricultural Economics and a BSc in Agriculture from Makerere University. Donald is a Rwandese native and is fluent in English and Kinyarwanda.

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Donald Ndahiro

Donald Ndahiro

SDGs Advisor

Dr. George A. Sempeho

Senior SDGs Advisor

George joined SDGC/A in August 2016 as a Senior SDGs Advisor. Before joining SDGC/A George worked as a Project Manager for the Africa Soils Information Service (AfSIS) of the Columbia Global Centers in Nairobi. He was responsible for day-to-day management of this Pan-African and multi-institutional project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Prior to this, George worked as the Country MDG Advisor and Coordinator for the Millennium Village Project (MVP) Tanzania under UNDP Tanzania, providing policy advice (based at the UNDP Country Office) on all issues related to the achievement of the MDGs in Tanzania. Furthermore, he coordinated the Millennium Villages Initiative in Tanzania, including the provision of management and technical support. Prior to this, George served as the Program Manager for the Agricultural Services Support Program (ASSP) under the Ministry of Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives in Tanzania; were he was responsible for the nationwide program (funded by IFAD and World Bank), covering research and development, extension and farmer empowerment. During this post, George managed collaboration and networking amongst allied agricultural R & D institutions, including key universities (e.g. Sokoine University of Agriculture and University of Dar es Salaam). Of his vast experience, George was a member of the National Task Force (under the auspices of the Economic and Social Foundation), which prepared the Tanzania 2025 Vision – addressing for the agricultural sector. In addition, George served as a member of the 15-member national team of experts charged with the task of drafting Phase II of the Tanzania National Strategy for Growth and Reduction of Poverty and served as a member of the five - member international panel, selected by the Rome-based Science Council and the CGIAR Secretariat, and charged with the quinquennial external program and management review (EPMR) of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), based in Nairobi, Kenya. He was also involved in various consultancy services for the World Bank, AfDB, CIDA, DfID and NORAD. George also served as a Research Fellow in Agricultural Economics, International Livestock Centre for Africa (ILCA – now renamed ILRI), Ibadan, (Nigeria) and Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), where he collected data for his PhD. dissertation. George holds a BSc in Tropical Agriculture and a Master of Science in Agricultural Economics from The University of Leipzig, Germany. In addition, George holds a PhD in Agricultural Economics from the University of Stuttgart-Hohenheim in Germany. George is a Tanzanian citizen and is fluent in Kiswahili, English and German.

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Dr. George A. Sempeho

Dr. George A. Sempeho

Senior SDGs Advisor

Gordon Shaw

SDGs Advisor

Gordon joined SDGC/A in August 2016 as a SDGs Advisor focusing on energy and infrastructure. In this role he leads implementation of energy and infrastructure projects and advises governments on best practices for planning infrastructure improvements. For Gordon, this journey started as a Peace Corps Volunteer in rural Rwanda in 2010 where he experienced first-hand the impact a lack of basic services has on people. From this he developed a passion for improving access to the millions that lack it worldwide. Before joining SDGC/A, Gordon worked as a Project Manager at the Sustainable Engineering Lab at Columbia University for water and energy projects with a focus on solar. In particular, he worked on a solar mini-grid project (SharedSolar) and a multi-farmer solar pumped irrigation system (Acacia Irrigation). He presented Acacia Irrigation in a TED-style talk at the Agriculture Innovation Investment Summit sponsored by USAID in May 2016. He also had the opportunity to work on electricity planning efforts in Tanzania in collaboration with the World Bank. These experiences allowed him to match his technical skills with his passion for development work and gave him insight into the macro level issues involved in improving access worldwide. Gordon holds a BS from The University of Toledo and a Master of Science from Columbia University in Mechanical Engineering with a concentration in energy systems. Gordon is a United States citizen and is fluent in English

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/gordonshaw

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Gordon Shaw

Gordon Shaw

SDGs Advisor

Lina Henao

Monitoring and Evaluation Advisor

Lina joined SDGC/A in July 2016 as a Monitoring and Evaluation Advisor, where she is supporting and providing technical advice to national governments in the continent on the development and institutionalization of modern “real-time” tools for data gathering, aggregation, visualization and analysis for planning and monitoring the SDGs. Previously she was working for Columbia Global Centers in Nairobi as an Economic Costing Evaluation Specialist for East & Southern Africa and was involved in quantitative and qualitative evaluation procedures at the Millennium Village Projects. She has worked as a consultant, helping a wide range of development organizations in different countries with evaluation assessment of multi sectorial rural development programs. Lina was a Visiting Scholar for the Institute of Latin American Studies at Columbia University and a Research Assistant at The Economic Development Research Center in Bogotá, Colombia; researching on Latin American macroeconomic environment and its institutions and working on impact evaluations of public policies. During this post Lina focused on decentralization, poverty and cash transfer programs and its effect on low-income households and vulnerable populations. Lina holds a B.A. and a Masters in Economics from Los Andes University and a Masters of Public Administration in Development Practice from Columbia University. Lina is a Colombian citizen and is fluent in English, Spanish, Portuguese and French.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/linahenao

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Lina Henao

Lina Henao

Monitoring and Evaluation Advisor

Mahmouda Hamoud

Manager, Procurement and Logistics

Mahmouda joined SDGCA in April, 2017 as the Manager in Procurement and Logistics. In this role, Mahmouda is in charge of  office logistical operations, travel, transport and events management. She started her professional career in September 1989 upon joining SwanAir Travel as Travel consultant.  In April 1993, Mahmouda moved to Gyro Travel Agency serving as an Assistant Travel Manager. From 1993 to 2012, Mahmouda served for ICRAF – The World Agroforestry Center as the Travel Assistant Officer, assisting the Travel manager organize for Center staff, dependants, visitors and workshop participants, rose to the position of Travel and Conferences Manager in charge of all Center travel and Conferences. From 2012 to 2016, Mahmouda joined the Columbia Global Centers in Africa as the Travel and Hospitality Manager in charge of all travel and hospitality logistics and office operations. Mahmouda has also served as a consultant in travel management, itinerary planning, engaged with travel principals with Airlines and Hotels for maximum cost effectiveness, as well as consulting with Sustainable Development Goals Center for Africa in Kigali and managing the launch event in January, 2017.

Mahmouda holds a IATA/UFTAA Diploma and has completed Travel Operations courses. She is a recipient of The President's Award-Kenya (PA-K) – Bronze category. Mahmouda is a Kenyan citizen, fluent in English and Swahili.

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Mahmouda Hamoud

Mahmouda Hamoud

Manager, Procurement and Logistics

May Hui

SDGs Advisor

May Hui joined SDGC/A in January 2017 as a SDG Advisor. Before joining the SDGC/A May worked in academia, grant making institutions, development institutions, public/private partnerships, independent think tanks, and the private sector. She was responsible for designing and managing monitoring and reporting systems for an integrated rural development project in 10 sub-Saharan African countries at the Earth Institute at Columbia University. She is interested in the use of data, technology and innovation to mitigate poverty and engender sustainable livelihoods.

May holds a Master’s of Public Administration specializing in public policy analysis from New York University Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Emory University. In her free time, she enjoys photography, traveling, biking, running, and gardening. May is a American citizen and is fluent in English.

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May Hui

May Hui

SDGs Advisor

Maylat Mesfin

Social Sector Advisor

Maylat joined SDGC/A in November 2016 as a Social Sector Advisor. Before joining the SDGC/A Maylat worked for Canadian Humanitarian (CH) as a Program Support Worker on a short-term project focusing on the education and skill development of children and youth from low-income families in three different communities within Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. After spending time getting to know the communities she worked with, she participated in program evaluation and produced a summary of her observations and suggestions. While initiating partnerships amongst community stakeholders, she also supported a start-up program for people with HIV. Finally, she led students through a photo-voice project that inspired community cohesion and preserved history. Prior to her service with Canadian Humanitarian in Ethiopia, Maylat attended a Master of Social Work program with a specialization in International Development at the University of Calgary while serving the Calgary community by working at Aventa, an organization that supports the addiction rehabilitation needs of women, by attending to their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellness. Her specific responsibilities ranged from providing counselling support, monitoring and supervising clients’ activities, preventing potential crisis and providing medication while updating clients’’ medical files. She is trained in suicide prevention, trained in First Aid/CPR, certified in medication administration, and trained in crises prevention/intervention. Maylat holds a Social Service Worker Diploma from George Brown College, a B.A. in Sociology from York University and a Master of Social Work in International and Community Development from University of Calgary. Maylat is an Ethiopian native and Canadian citizen and is fluent in English and Amharic.

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Maylat Mesfin

Maylat Mesfin

Social Sector Advisor

Olive Dushime

SDGs Advisor

SDG Advisor

Olive joined SDGC/A in July 2017 as a SDGs Advisor.  Before  joining the SDGC/A , Olive Worked  as Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist for The Millennium Villages Project (MVP) in Mayange Rwanda; she served Millennium Villages Project in its key sectors ( Health, Agriculture, Education, Business Development and Infrastructure) providing expertise on all aspects of Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) practices and policies through development of indicators, targets and methodologies for measuring, monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the project interventions against meeting the set Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  Prior to join the project, she worked as Data Analyst Individual Consultant with several organizations on various projects including maternal and child health, infectious and tropical disease prevention, water and sanitation, education and capacity building programs.

Olive holds a Master of Science in Mathematical Sciences from African Institute for Mathematical Sciences/Senegal and a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Applied Statistics from the Institute of Applied Sciences/Ruhengeri. Olive is a Rwandan native and is fluent in Kinyarwanda, English and French.

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Olive Dushime

Olive Dushime

SDGs Advisor

Pascal Gasheja

Director of Corporate Services

Pascal Gasheja joined the SDGC/A in July 2016. Prior to this appointment, he worked as Regional Finance Manager for The MDG Center regional office in Nairobi, Kenya, from June 2010 to June 2016 hosted at under The World Agroforestry Centre (2011) and Columbia Global Centers | Africa (2012 -2016). His work consisted of overseeing financial reporting systems of Millennium Villages Projects in East and Southern Africa region. He served as Director of Finance and Administration of the Millennium Villages Project Mayange, Rwanda from 2007 to 2011, overseeing financial reporting, human resource management, procurement and administration. He worked also in 2006 as Financial Management Specialist for the Access Project Rwanda under Columbia University. Previously, Pascal worked at the Office of the Auditor General (OAG) Rwanda from 2000 to 2006. His role included financial auditing, audit trainer, development of audit guidelines and quality review of audit reports. He has extensive experience in financial reporting, procurement, human resource management and financial auditing. He holds a BSc. in Economics from the University of Rwanda, then National University of Rwanda.

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Pascal Gasheja

Pascal Gasheja

Director of Corporate Services

Sarah Lawan

Lead Manager for Program Partnerships and Innovations

Sarah Lawan joined SDGC/A in January 2017 as Lead Manager for Program Partnerships and Innovations. In that capacity, she focuses on building a system for disseminating knowledge and sharing innovative solutions useful to achieve the SDGs in Africa.
Before joining the SDGC/A, she was Senior Programme Officer of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD/NPCA) in New York, performing Advocacy and Multi-Stakeholder Mobilization on the Post-2015 development agenda for Africa. Throughout her tenure, she coordinated the African Voice in the intergovernmental negotiations for it to speak as one on continental priorities and to influence the global agendas. Sarah started her collaboration with the technical body of the African Union back in 2009 by facilitating relations between the United Nations system, US-based partners and the NEPAD/NPCA Headquarters in South Africa. She served as the Sherpa of Dr. Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, NEPAD CEO, for the Sustainable Energy for All initiative.
From 2006 to 2008, Sarah was Deputy of the Scientific Attaché at the French Embassy in Israel. There, she worked on scientific cooperation between France and Israel involving both the private sector and academic research. She then focused on state of the art innovation, technology transfer, and solar energy.

Sarah holds an engineer degree in scientific instrumentation and applied business as well as a master degree in innovation, industrial, and international marketing. She also completed the Harvard Kennedy School Innovation for Economic Development executive education program. Sarah is a Franco-Nigerien citizen and is fluent in English and French.

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sarah-lawan-gana-8922741

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Sarah Lawan

Sarah Lawan

Lead Manager for Program Partnerships and Innovations

Tona Munyaneza

Executive Secretary

Tona joined The Sustainable Development Goals Center for Africa (SDGC/A), in July 2016 as the Executive Secretary to Director General. In this role she provides secretarial and administrative support to the Director General’s Office. She has background and experience in media engagement, digital communication, campaign management, program development and advocacy. Prior to joining SDGC/A, she worked at the European Union Delegation in Rwanda as the press and information officer providing strategic and operational guidance on internal and external communication matters related to the EU Delegations work in Rwanda. Tona also worked at Ion, as an account manager, overseeing portfolio of different accounts, projects and campaigns. In addition, she previously served at Girl Effect in Rwanda as a communication associate and with the UN Women Central Africa Regional Office as a regional communication officer. Tona has a B.A in International Relations and Diplomatic Studies from Cavendish University. She is a Rwandan native and is fluent in English, Kinyarwanda and Siswati.

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Tona Munyaneza

Tona Munyaneza

Executive Secretary

 

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