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African Diaspora Business Dialogue Forum 2016
May 3, 2016MC 2-800, 1818 H Street NW, Washington D.C.

The African Diaspora Business Dialogue: Convening Stakeholders for Entrepreneurship, Investments, SME and Skills Development in Africa is a forum to engage and incentivize entrepreneurs and investors in the African Diaspora, who are looking to create entrepreneurship, trade, investment and mentorship opportunities in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The potential wealth and talent existing in the African Diaspora is enormous. Some researchers estimate that US $53 billion are saved on an annual basis by the African diaspora. Additionally, it is estimated that by 2040 Africa will have a larger workforce than China or India. This will require targeted new enterprise growth in areas that can enhance food supply, healthcare services, and educational solutions like; STEM within local communities. This presents a wonderful opportunity for the diaspora to explore business development in the continent.

In addition, trade and investment survey results from the global African diaspora will be presented. This survey will outline and illustrate sectors the diaspora is currently doing business in: agribusiness, consumer products, energy, climate change, financial services/inclusion, tourism, etc. Furthermore, the survey can provide some insight into the activities of the diaspora in trading, investing and technical assistance. The survey and its analysis can provide African countries some insight on ways to attract their diaspora populations, and give countries insight on better positioning themselves for investment promotion to foreign investors.

This forum will be an opportunity to interact and hear from various demographics in the Africa diaspora, and their successes and failures of doing investment and trade. Expect to hear from diaspora early-stage investors and entrepreneurs talk about their challenges and issues they are facing on investment climate, supply chains, etc. Many investors from the global diaspora will want some assurances when looking for investments – many don’t know about resources from donors to enhance their investments. Additionally, donors will hear about projects various stakeholders in the diaspora are implementing or investing in. In many cases, some donors have found many challenges in scaling up investments in certain sectors. This scaling up is important for job creation, especially for youth and young adults that comprise half of Sub-Saharan’s population.

Some donors will discuss their existing programs they are implementing to engage with the diaspora for trade and investment. Donors will also be looking for suggestions and ideas aimed at engaging with key demographics of the African Diaspora. This forum would be a good point of collaboration for donors, to partner and discover potential synergies with investors and entrepreneurs in the diaspora.

Target Audience: members of the African diaspora who are looking at trade, investment and mentorship opportunities in their home countries; donors who are looking for new partnerships to create sustainability and private sector jobs.

Knowledge Exchange: Participants will gain a glimpse at programs and opportunities to collaborate on: diaspora groups can identify programs or initiatives they can tap to provide technical assistance or early-stage financing from development partners; development partners can share information and find potential diaspora partners for ongoing programs in their countries of operation.


In Partnership With:


World Bank Group Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice

African Development Bank

U.S. Chamber of Commerce



Tuesday, May 3, 2016 

08:30 am – 09:00 am

Light breakfast 

09:00 am – 10:00 am

Opening Remarks, Parth S. Tewari, Task Leader, Diaspora Entrepreneurship & SME Project, World Bank Group 

Plenary Session

Chair: Klaus Tilmes, Director, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group


Albert Zeufack, Chief Economist, Africa Region, World Bank Group

Agnes Dasewicz, Director, Office of Private Capital and Microenterprise, USAID

Lisa Stadelbauer, Director General of Trade and Development, Global Affairs Canada

Scott Eisner, President, U.S – Africa Business Center, U.S. Chamber Of Commerce 

10:00 am – 11:15 am

Panel 1: Diaspora Entrepreneurs and Investors: Prospects and Challenges of Doing Business in Africa; Opportunities and Challenges in Making Deals Happen.

Moderator: Angelle Kwemo, Founder & Chair, Believe in Africa


Obi Anusiem, CEO, Ngex

Amina Gerba, President/CEO & Founder, Afrique Expansion

Stephane le Bouder, Director, AFIG Funds

Roland Fomundam, Founder & CEO, Greenhouse Ventures

Elron Awase, Managing Director, Tesla Energy Solutions

11:15 am – 11:30 am

Coffee break

11:30 am – 01:00 pm

Panel 2: Engaging the Diaspora: Mentorship and Investments in SME, Green Business and Clean Tech: The role of Diaspora in Enhancing Productivity, Capacity and Investment Opportunities in the Energy, Clean Tech and Other Sectors across Africa.

Moderator: Sarah Dimson, Private Sector Team Lead (Acting), Power Africa Coordinator’s Office, USAID


Tracy Washington, Principal Investment Officer, International Finance Corporation

Ben Todd, Senior Business Development Officer, Africa, EXIM Bank US

Christopher Jurgens, Director, Center for Transformational Partnerships, USAID

Jon Vandenheuvel, CEO, First Hectares Capital

1:00pm – 2:00pm

Talks over Lunch:

  • Patience Marime-Ball, Managing Director, Golden Seeds
  • Sonia Plaza, Senior Economist, World Bank Group
  • Jean Gauthier, CEO, Canadian Council of Africa
  • Ethiopia Climate Innovation Center Entrepreneur

02:00 pm – 03:30 pm

Panel 3: Partnering on Skills Development in Agribusiness and Value Chains: Understand what is being done by the private sector and development partners to make agribusiness more efficient; insight into what is being done to get more youth engaged in agribusiness and value chains.

3:15pm – 4:30pm

Panel 4: Engaging Diaspora in Skills and STEM training

Understand how multinationals and development partners are utilizing diaspora professionals for technical assistance and mentorship.

Moderator: Simeon Ehui, Practice Manager, Agriculture, World Bank Group


Christine Montenegro McGrath, Vice President, Global Sustainability Well-being, Government & Public Affairs, Mondolez International

Jeff Morgan, Director of Global Programs, Mars Incorporated

Simon Derrick, Manager, Group Brand and Communication, Blue Skies

Curtis Etherly, Director, Federal Affairs & International Stakeholder Relations, Coca Cola Rita Bulusu, Agribusiness and Partnerships Specialist, Initiative for Global Development 

3:30pm – 4:45pm

Panel 4: Engaging Diaspora in Skills and STEM training: Understand how multinationals and development partners are utilizing diaspora professionals for technical assistance and mentorship.

Moderator: Andreas Blom, Lead Economist, Education Global Practice, World Bank Group


David Crane, Vice President of Government Affairs, Autodesk

Dr. Nader Imani, CEO of Festo Didactic

Carl Peters, Director of Technical Training, The Lincoln Electric Company

Damien Shiels, Program Manager, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group

4:45pm – 6:00pm

Speed Networking Platform: Participants will get the opportunity to talk with speakers and each other on MSME, Investments, Trade and Skills Development.


Parth S. Tewari, Task Team Leader, Diaspora Entrepreneurship & SME Project, World Bank Group (MSME/Technology Services)

Lucy Fye, Task Team Leader, Diaspora Entrepreneurship & SME Project, World Bank Group (Skills Development)

Rita Bulusu, Agribusiness and Partnerships Specialist, Initiative for Global Development (Agribusiness)

Andreas Blom, Lead Economist, World Bank Group (Skills in STEM) 

Mike Ehst, Business Incubator Specialist, World Bank Group (Clean Tech & Green Business)

Welela Ketema, Program Officer, World Bank Group (Clean Tech & Green Business)

06:00 pm – 06:30 pm

Closing Remarks, Lucy Fye, Task Team Leader, Diaspora Entrepreneurship & SME Project, World Bank Group 


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    Klaus Tilmes

    Director, Trade and Competitiveness Global Practice, World Bank Group
    Klaus Tilmes, a German national, has been appointed the Global Practice Director for the Trade and Competitiveness Practice (T&C) of the World Bank Group, effective July 1, 2014. In his new capacity, Klaus is responsible for such global themes as Trade, Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship. He is leading the Strategy & Operations Group, and is in charge of two regions within T & C: Africa and Middle East. Prior to his current position, Klaus was the Director of the Financial and Private Sector Development (FPD) Network, a position he held from 2010 to 2014. He also served as Acting Vice President for the FPD Network from October 2013 to June 2014. In those roles, he championed the improvement of knowledge flows and connectivity, putting them at the core of FPD’s service to clients. Klaus joined the Bank in 1991 as an Economist in the Africa region. Subsequent managerial and advisory assignments include positions in the areas of Private Participation in Infrastructure, Corporate Strategy, the Independent Evaluation Group, and Knowledge. Klaus’ World Bank Group experience combines country operation, cross-cutting sector work in financial and private sector development, economic development, and infrastructure services, along with corporate strategy and evaluation – much of it gained at the intersection of the Bank and IFC. Klaus earned a Master’s degree in Public Administration in Development Economics and Public Sector Management from Harvard University, and an MA in Economics from the University of Mannheim.
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    Albert Zeufack

    Practice Manager, Macroeconomics and Fiscal Management, World Bank Group
    Dr. Albert Zeufack is the Chief Economist in the African Region. Prior to this he was Practice Manager in the Global Practice for Macroeconomics and Fiscal Management. He is also the Community of Practice Leader for the Management of Natural Resource Rents. His portfolio includes countries in Eastern Europe and Natural Resources-Rich countries in Central and East Africa. Prior to assuming this position in July 2012, Dr. Zeufack was, for four years, the Director of Research and Investment Strategy for Khazanah Nasional Berhad, a Malaysian sovereign wealth fund, based in Kuala Lumpur. Prior to joining Khazanah, he was the World Bank's acting Lead Economist and Head of the Poverty Reduction and Economic Management Cluster for South-East Asia based in Bangkok, Thailand. He was Senior Country Economist for Malaysia for six years. Dr. Zeufack joined the World Bank through the Young Professional Program in 1997. He has worked in both Research and Operations on Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Russia. Dr. Zeufack has worked extensively on micro-foundations of growth and competitiveness, the economics and governance of natural resources and is author of books and numerous articles. He holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Clermont-Ferrand in France.
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    Parth Shri Tewari

    Lead Private Sector Development Specialist, Diaspora, MSMEs and Technology Services, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
    Parth S. Tewari has worked in the Public, Private and Social sectors at the World Bank Group, McKinsey & Co., Inc. and TechnoServe, Inc. At the World Bank, he focuses on Micro Small and Medium Enterprise development and Technology Enabled Services. He has worked in over 30 countries especially in Asia and the Middle East. He co-authored the highly referenced McKinsey Quarterly article "Brains Abroad," on leveraging expatriate talent for home countries, which was especially leveraged by many stakeholder in countries such as Korea, the United States and India. He also co-authored the white paper entitled “Indians Without Borders underlying the Indian Diaspora day. Mr. Tewari received his Master's degree along with a certificate in public management from the Stanford University. He earned his undergraduate degree in Physics from the University of Delhi.
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    Agnes Dasewicz, MBA

    Director, Office of Private Capital and Microenterprise (PCM) Bureau for Economic Growth, Education and Environment U.S. Agency of International Development (USAID)
    Agnes Dasewicz, serves as Acting Director of the Office of Private Capital and Microenterprise (PCM) within the Bureau for Economic Growth, Education, and Environment (E3) of the U.S. Agency of International Development (USAID). Drawing on USAID’s presence and resources in developing countries, PCM works with investors and other U.S. government agencies, to catalyze greater investment in support of key development objectives. As part of this work, Ms. Dasewicz developed and led the implementation of the private sector outreach strategy under Power Africa, securing over $20 billion of investment commitments from U.S. and African financiers and corporations towards energy transactions on the continent. Ms. Dasewicz has 20 years of experience in the field of investing in developing and transitioning economies, including in infrastructure, SMEs, and social enterprises. Ms. Dasewicz started her work in finance in the 1990s, when she was part of the founding team of the Small Enterprise Assistance Fund (SEAF), now one of the leading global SME investment funds. Subsequently she worked as an investment officer for one of the first private equity funds in Eastern Europe, AIG’s New Europe Fund, and as a manager at the International Finance Corporation (IFC). Prior to joining USAID, Agnes Dasewicz was a founding team member of the Grassroots Business Fund (GBF), a $60 million impact investing fund that provides sustainable economic opportunities to millions of people at the base of the economic pyramid. She holds an MBA from the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University, and a BA in International Affairs from George Washington University.
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    Lisa Stadelbauer

    Director General, Pan Africa, Global Affairs Canada
    Lisa Stadelbauer (BA, University of Western Ontario, 1988) joined External Affairs and International Trade Canada in 1990. Her first assignment abroad was in 1992 to Tel Aviv, and she later served in Hanoi as Counselor, then in Oslo as Counselor and Consul. In Ottawa, she worked with the India, Bangladesh, Burma, Nepal and Bhutan Desk, the Middle East Peace Process Coordination Group and the United Nations and Commonwealth Affairs Division. She was director of the Eastern and Southern Africa Division and deputy to Canada’s Africa Personal Representative to the G-8 before her appointment as Ambassador of Canada to the Republic of Zimbabwe, with accreditation to Botswana and Angola.
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    Scott Eisner

    President, U.S. – Africa Business Center; Vice President, African Affairs
    Scott Eisner is president of the U.S.-Africa Business Center at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. He is also an officer at the Chamber serving as vice president. Eisner represents the Chamber’s interests in Africa through its U.S.-Africa Business Center (USABC), the business community’s leading advocacy group aimed at strengthening U.S.-Africa trade relations. He directs the strategic activities of the USABC as it engages with senior-level U.S. government officials, international business leaders, and African governments. In addition, he heads the Chamber’s U.S.-South Africa Business Council and the U.S.-Cote d’Ivoire Business Council. Previously, Eisner was head of operations for the Chamber’s International Affairs Division while holding the position of vice president, African Affairs. Before that, he was deputy chief of staff at the Chamber where he oversaw the Executive Office and was the senior staffer to the Chamber’s president and CEO. Eisner has held a number of leadership roles at the Chamber, including special assistant to the president and CEO and director of programs for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, formerly known as the National Chamber Foundation.
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    Angelle Kwemo

    Founder & Chair, Believe In Africa
    Ms. Kwemo is Managing Director and CEO of Rimsom Strategies, a firm that provides government relations, international trade advisory and strategic advice to multi-dimensional entities, allowing them to compete globally and build inroads into the United States, Africa and other emerging markets. A native of Cameroon, she started her career in France at Bestaux Law firm. In Douala, Cameron, she served as the Chief of the Maritime Claims and Disputes Department, and later as the General Counsel for Bollore Technology Group and Geodis Overseas. She worked for seven years in the U.S. Congress as Legislative Counsel for two members of the House of Representatives, including Rep. Bobby L. Rush, Senior Member of the Energy and Commerce Committee. Ms. Kwemo was instrumental in the U.S. Congress and played a key role in policy formulation on issues affecting the global economy. She worked tirelessly on the passage of legislations to increase U.S. – trade relations. Ms. Kwemo was President and Founder of the Congressional African Staff Association which aimed to educate Members of Congress, Senators and their staff on the positive progress of Africa. Ms. Kwemo has received a number of recognitions for her exemplary work, including the DC Government’s Public Service Award, a citation from Maryland’s Governor Martin O’Malley, the “50 Most Powerful Women in Business Leadership Award” by the Minority Business Magazine, and was named one of the “World’s Most Influential Africans in the Diaspora” by Paris based Africa 24 Magazine. She is regularly published and featured in the news, including Voice of America TV (VOA), France 24 TV, Africa 24 TV, China Daily, Forbes Afrique and Africa Report. Ms. Kwemo, holds a Bachelor’s and an LLM degree in Economic Activity Law from the University of Rouen in France and a LLM degree in International Business Transactions and Human Rights Law from Washington College of Law at American University in Washington D.C.
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    Obi Anusiem

    CEO, Ngex
    Obi Anusiem is an entrepreneurial and result-oriented professional with experiences in roles that have covered Engineering, Finance, Product Development and Internet Technology. He is the founder and CEO of NGEX, a marketing solutions company, based in Silicon Valley that offers technology based products and services for businesses and organizations that want to reach and engage with consumers and businesses in Nigeria and the Nigerian Diaspora. Previously, Obi was at Intel where he provided strategic finance support for brand and marketing activities related to Intel’s product brands and led the finance departments overall efforts to plan and coordinate a $300m marketing investment in Ultrabooks. Prior to Intel, Obi worked as a consultant on various projects in Africa. where he led a multi-national team of marketers, programmers, developers and consultants in developing internet based solutions and initiating new product development and growth strategies for clients in various industries like telecoms, banking, mobile money, government and logistics/shipping. Before that, Obi was a Financial Analyst in Goodrich's Corporate Treasury department, where he was responsible for asset allocation, investment manager selection and performance, pension contributions and methods of improving administrative efficiency for the $1.3 billion pension plan. Obi also worked a Product Design Engineer for Ford Motor Company and General Motors before switching careers. He holds an MBA from the University of Michigan, an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan and a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from the University of Port-Harcourt.
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    Amina Gerba

    President/CEO & Founder, Afrique Expansion Inc.
    Mrs. Amina Gerba is the Founder and President of Afrique Expansion, Inc. Based in Montreal, Canada, her firm is a world-class international business development consultancy, strategic communications, and media relations practice—dedicated to promotion closer commercial relations between North America and the emerging markets of Africa; to advance trade, investment, and economic development opportunities and partnerships across the Atlantic; in addition to promoting a more positive image of the continent. An African-Canadian of Cameroonian-descent, after completing her academic studies she worked in business development and International marketing for several Canadian firms. Inspired by her entrepreneurial spirit and realizing the lack reliable market information available to Canadian businesses and policy makers, she decided to launch Afrique Expansion. Shortly after this, she also launched a couple of other entrepreneurial enterprises, including a line of African Shea Butter natural cosmetics and organic skincare products under the KARIDERM® brand—in addition founding a Shea haircare firm, Kariliss Laboratories, Inc. Mrs. Gerba serve on the board of the Canadian Council on Africa, the African Business Roundtable and Fonds Afro-Entrepreneurs. She is the past president of the Rotary Club of Old Montreal; and a member of WEConnect, one of the world’s largest international businesswomen’s organizations. Her numerous awards for achievements in business and community service include the Chevaliere de l’Order national du Quebec by the Prime Minister of Quebec, and the Entrepreneur of the Year by the African Business Network, among others. In 2013, she was also selected by the U.S. Department of State for the prestigious and highly selective International Visitors Program to the U.S. Mrs. Gerba holds an MBA from the School of Business at Universite du Quebec-Montreal (UQAM). And in 2012, she was honored with UQAM’s Prix Reconnaissance Award, in recognition of her outstanding service and contributions to the local and global community.
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    Stephane le Bouder

    Director, AFIG Funds
    Stephane Le Bouder is a director at AFIG Funds. Prior to joining AFIG Funds, Stephane served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Affairs at the US Treasury Department Office of Legislative Affairs in Washington DC. A political appointee, he worked with senior Treasury and White House officials to advance the Obama Administration’s international financial and development agenda in Congress. Prior to that, he worked for the US Congress as Staff Director for the House Financial Services Subcommittee on International Monetary Policy and Trade. As senior committee staff, under the leadership of Chairman Barney Frank (Massachusetts), Stephane helped draft the landmark Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act. Under the leadership of Subcommittee Chairman Gregory Meeks (New York), he was responsible for congressional oversight of US engagement with multilateral institutions. Prior to working for the US Government, he worked for MyC4, a Danish technology startup building an online peer-to-peer microfinance lending platform dedicated to Africa. Stephane also worked for Chatham Financial, in Pennsylvania, advising regional and community banks across the US on identifying, modeling and trading interest rate risks. He started his career at the Corporate Executive Board in Washington DC, advising Fortune 500 clients on Treasury function best practices. He holds a BA and MA in Economics from McGill University, and an MBA from Harvard Business School. He holds both French and American citizenships.
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    Roland Fomundam

    Founder & CEO, Greenhouse Ventures
    Roland Fomundam Founder & CEO, Greenhouse Ventures Roland Fomundam, founder and CEO of Greenhouse Ventures (GHV) is a seasoned social entrepreneur. Over the past eight years, he devoted his time to finding lasting solutions to tackle challenges facing Africa’s agricultural communities that make up ‘65 percent of Africa’s labor force and account for 32 percent of gross domestic product’ (FAO). Roland started GHV, to address these challenges, improve the lives of famers and bridge income inequality by deploying a Greenhouse business model that not only challenges the stigma that agriculture in Africa is for the poor, the dirty and uneducated people but also portrays one that is enjoyable, profitable, sustainable and saves the environment. Roland is also the founder of two for profit companies and one not for profit organization. He has also led research teams to Cameroon made up of students established through educational network from the Northeastern University where he earned a Masters in Technology Entrepreneurship. Roland’s solutions and ideas have been implemented in several communities throughout Cameroon. He is also a visiting lecturer in Innovation and Entrepreneurship in a few universities in Cameroon.
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    Elron Awase

    Managing Director, Tesla Energy Solutions
    Born and raised in Namibia, Elron is an engineer and entrepreneur specializing in the country's energy sector. Elron was part of the strategic and technical team that help with the restructuring of the electricity industry in Namibia and the formation of first privately operates distribution and supply company. He served as part of the Executive team's General Manager of Commercial Services during the transition period of the Regional Electricity Distribution and Supply company. Elron has since been the founder and Managing Director of Tesla Energy Solutions, which offers energy solutions to utilities and industrial customers through the use of smart automatic meter reading platforms and smart grid technologies. His solutions are used throughout the Namibian electricity industry to improve metering of electricity and energy management programs. The Electricity Regulatory has adopted their solutions in their Net Metering Policy which has increased renewal energy activity in Namibia. Elron serves on different Boards as Executive director in the role of a strategic advisor. He is also part of Mondesa Youth Opportunities (MYO), an after-school program in Namibia dedicated to high achieving youth from underprivileged communities. Elron earned his Executive MBA at New York University in 2015 specializing in Corporate Finance and Entrepreneurship and continues to be passionate about further developing the energy industry across Africa. He graduated from University of Pretoria, South Africa with multiple degrees in Engineering, a Masters in Engineering Management, Bachelor of Engineering (Honors) Computer Engineering, and Bachelor of Engineering: Electrical (First Class).
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    Sarah Dimson

    Private Enterprise Officer, Power Africa USAID
    Sarah Dimson leads Power Africa’s Private Sector Team, which specializes in facilitating clean, catalytic power transactions to financial close, identifying new market-based opportunities, and creating and leveraging various tools and resources, particularly across Power Africa’s USG and global Development partners, to advance sustainable power sectors throughout sub-Saharan Africa. In addition to managing Power Africa’s Private Sector Team, Ms. Dimson also facilitates Power Africa’s Southern Africa Region activities, and spearheads the effort the increase the stock of utility-scale solar PV in sub-Saharan Africa. Ms. Dimson joined the Power Africa Coordinator’s Office in 2014. Prior to Power Africa, Ms. Dimson’s professional experience included over ten years of work in management positions – including consulting for the World Bank Group’s Africa Energy Division, leading the development of energy efficient and climate responsible urban-infill real-estate projects in the U.S. and South Asia, and analyzing operational strategies for companies through a career in management consulting. Ms. Dimson holds a Master’s Degree in City Planning-International Development from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a Bachelors of Arts in Science, Technology and Society, with a concentration in Management Science and Engineering, from Stanford University. Ms. Dimson also studied Economics and Modern Architecture at the University of Oxford (Saïd Business School and St Catherine’s College) through Stanford’s Overseas Studies Program. Ms. Dimson is a first-generation Ghanaian-American who grew up in the southern U.S. region.
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    Tracy Washington

    Principal Investment Officer, International Finance Corporation
    Tracy Washington leads IFC’s private equity investments in Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Funds and manages IFC’s pioneering SME Ventures Program focused on fragile states such as Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Nepal. With twenty years of experience in development finance, as well as a specific expertise in SME funds, Mrs. Washington leads SME-Ventures’ work in bringing innovative private equity models to some of the world’s most challenging markets. Before her appointment to this role, Mrs. Washington led the IFC Mozambique SME Initiative, combining risk capital finance with technical assistance to accelerate the growth of local SMEs. Prior to her work with SME funds, Mrs. Washington led corporate finance investments with global clients in the manufacturing, health and education, and financial sectors in emerging markets, including those in Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and South Asia. Mrs. Washington holds a MBA degree from the Georgetown University McDonough School of Business and a BS degree from the University of Maryland, College Park.
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    Benjamin Todd

    Senior Business Development Officer, Africa The Export-Import Bank of the United States
    Benjamin Todd has worked at Ex-Im Bank for over seven years and oversees a portfolio reaching $7 billion. In the seven years Ben has worked at Ex-Im Bank, the portfolio has grown its annual credit authorizations from $500 million in 2008 to over $2 billion in fiscal year 2014. He has assisted in the origination and underwriting of both small and large transactions in over 44 countries across Africa. Prior to Ex-Im Bank, Ben worked in the budget and finance office of the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) analyzing large aviation capital improvement projects. Prior to the FAA, Ben was a Peace Corps volunteer in Lesotho and directed a community and technology project in Hartford, Connecticut. The project in Hartford gained national attention and won several awards. He was named one of Hartford’s 40 under 40 by the Hartford Business Journal in 2001. He has a Master of Science degree in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Trinity College in Hartford.
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    Christopher Jurgens

    Director, Center for Transformational Partnerships, USAID/DIV
    Chris Jurgens leads the Center for Transformational Partnerships at the U.S. Global Development Lab, which champions the Agency’s efforts to engage the private sector to advance development outcomes. His office manages the Global Development Alliance, the Agency's flagship model for building shared value partnerships with global corporations, local businesses, investors, philanthropic partners, and diaspora communities. Chris also oversees the Agency’s Entrepreneurship and Impact Investing portfolio, which aims to strengthen entrepreneurial ecosystems in developing countries and unlock the potential of entrepreneurs to serve as engines of economic growth and innovation. This portfolio includes the Partnering to Accelerate Entrepreneurship (PACE) initiative, under which the Agency is partnering with a range of seed stage impact investors and accelerators to catalyze private investment into promising entrepreneurs and support their growth. Prior to joining USAID, Chris served as Director of Global Programs for Accenture Development Partnerships (ADP), Accenture’s not-for-profit consulting practice, where he oversaw ADP’s global portfolio of work with over50 NGOs and donor agencies and led Accenture’s efforts in North America to engage its corporate clients in global development issues via cross-sectoral partnerships. He has a Masters’ degree from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service, and a BA in Economics from Miami University.
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    Jon Vandenheuvel

    CEO, First Hectares Capital
    First Hectares Capital provides infrastructure finance for African agribusiness and forestry. Jon is also co-founder of Africa Atlantic Franchise Farms, a commercial farm located on the shoreline of Lake Volta in Ghana, and AKILI, the Agribusiness Knowledge and Innovation Leadership Initiative, a non-profit research and training program for African farmers, youth and professionals, developed in association with faculty of the Harvard Kennedy School and MIT. Jon spent his early career working for the U.S. House of Representatives on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.
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    Patience Marime-Ball

    Managing Director, Golden Seeds
    Patience Marime-Ball is recognized for demonstrated leadership skills in driving innovation and building sustainable global investments focused on growth and strategic impact. She has years of experience in debt and equity financing as well as early stage investments in women-led companies. She is currently Managing Director at Golden Seeds, where she invests in gender diverse/women-led companies. Most recently, Patience was Managing Partner/CEO of Mara AdVenture Investments, part of the Mara Group. Previously, at the International Finance Corporation, she developed and grew the Banking on Women offer to more than $800 million of investments in women-owned businesses across emerging markets. Earlier, Patience worked in project finance, structuring financing packages for power generation assets in North America, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean. She has extensive experience restructuring distressed assets. Patience sits on the Board of the International Center for Research on Women. She serves on the Advisory Boards of two early-stage companies. She holds an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and a JD from the Pritzker School of Law at Northwestern University.
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    Sonia Plaza

    Senior Economist, World Bank Group
    Sonia Plaza is a Senior Economist in the Global Indicators Group of the World Bank. She has worked on science and technology projects in Latin American and coauthored a major analytical survey of migration and development for the Africa region. Sonia was born in Lima, Peru. Her father had a constructing firm, so some of her earliest childhood memories are of traveling with him to poor areas including Ayacucho where he was working on projects. This is how she was first exposed to development work, and it shaped her. She wrote chapter 5 of the book, “Africa’s Silk Road: China and India’s New Economic Frontier”, which covers trade facilitation, technology, and skills transfer, and regional trade agreements. She advises many universities on the transfer of skills and tapping into their diasporas. Sonia attended the University of Lima and earned a degree in Economics, after which she joined Chase Manhattan Bank, and was then invited to join the Peruvian Ministry of Trade as a manager responsible for counter trade and debt swap agreements. She also has a dual degree from Yale University and the University of Pennsylvania in International Economics and Development. She was Professor of Economics (International Economics) at the Peruvian School of Foreign Service and at the University of Lima in Peru, and was adjunct faculty (Microeconomics and Macroeconomics) at The American University in Washington, DC. Her research interests include international migration, labor mobility, trade, and the future of labor. She joined the Institute for the Study of Labor as a Research Fellow in February 2010.
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    Jean Gauthier

    CEO, Canadian Council of Africa (CCA)
    In October 2013, Mr. Gauthier was appointed President and CEO of the Canadian Council on Africa, a not-for-profit organization devoted to the promotion of trade and economic relations between Canada and the African continent. In August 2014, he was appointed Director of the Canadian junior oil company James Bay Resources. From September 2009 to August 2012, Mr. Gauthier served as the first Deputy High Commissioner of Canada to Nigeria with responsibilities for the Deputy High Commission of Canada in Lagos and Senior Regional Trade Commissioner for Nigeria and Central Africa. From May 2006 to August 2009, Mr. Gauthier was Deputy Director for the African Great Lakes Region, Central Africa and Nigeria at the department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, where he had special responsibilities for coordinating Canada's bilateral relations with Nigeria. This role was in addition to the responsibilities he took on in 2003 as Deputy to Canada's Special Envoy and Ambassador for the African Great Lakes Region. Mr. Gauthier has also had previous overseas assignments in Egypt, Kuwait, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Yemen where political developments, trade relations, and oil policies were his daily focus. In June 2005, Mr. Gauthier received one of the four annual “Professional Association of Foreign Service Officers award” in recognition of the dedication and commitment that characterized his long and successful career in the Foreign Service.
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    Simeon Ehui

    Practice Manager, Agriculture, World Bank Group
    As Practice Manager for Agriculture with a focus on West Africa in the World Bank Group, Simeon Ehui is providing technical and managerial leadership for the agriculture agenda in the Africa region with a special focus on helping to transform the agriculture sector in the region and strengthening policy dialogues in countries. Prior to shifting to Africa in May 2015, Simeon worked for the South Asia region as Sector Manager for six years where he helped to reinvigorate the World Bank’s knowledge and analytic work and strengthened policy dialogue in the countries that led to emphasis onto new business areas. He also helped to shift South Asia’s clients focus to a middle income country with a particular emphasis on learning between developing regions, cross-sectoral programs and the impact of climate change on agriculture. He supported the introduction of innovative lending and knowledge products to help South Asia clients achieve development results and made critical inroads on the agriculture agenda in the region. Simeon is an Agriculture Economist with Masters (1983) and PhD (1987) from Purdue University (Indiana, USA). He authored or co-authored over 100 articles , books and book chapters in agricultural and food policy, international trade and natural resource management in “American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural Economics Food Policy, African Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, New Encyclopedia for Africa, Journal of African Economies, Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture, World Development, Environment and Development Economics, Outlook on Agriculture”, to name but a few. His skills span various areas, including, but not limited to: agricultural policy, natural resource management, food security and nutrition and agricultural trade.
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    Christine Montenegro McGrath

    Vice President, Global CGA, Sustainability & Well-being, Government & Public Affairs, Mondolez International
    Christine Montenegro McGrath is vice president of external affairs for Mondolez International. She works with business teams around the world to reduce Mondolez International's environmental footprint and deliver its sustainability and health commitments. She leads Cocoa Life, a $400 million program to create thriving cocoa communities and help transform the supply chain through better farming and community empowerment. McGrath was the vice president of global sustainability at Kraft Foods, Inc. from 2011 until the company split in October 2012. She led Kraft Foods' Latino Center of Excellence from 2009 to 2011. In this role, McGrath was the driving force behind an increase in the company's investment in the Latino market. She began her career with Kraft as a financial analyst. McGrath formerly co-chaired the national Kraft Foods Latino Employee Council. McGrath earned a B.S. in accounting and philosophy from Boston College and a master's degree in marketing from the Kellogg School of Business at Northwestern University.
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    Jeff Morgan

    Director of Global Programs, Mars Incorporated
    Jeff Morgan is Community Development Workstream Leader of Mars, Incorporated’s cocoa sustainability development program – Vision for Change. He is based at Mars’ global headquarters in McLean, Virginia. With Mars since 1979, Jeff has been involved with the issue of cocoa sustainability and was a member of the original Mars working group to define sustainability challenges facing the global cocoa sector. Since 2000, Jeff has focused his efforts on the social aspects of cocoa farming and sustainability within the global cocoa supply chain for Mars. As Mars’ Community Development Workstream Leader, he supports Mars’ unique Vision for Change program in Côte d’Ivoire which enables farmers’ to raise yield and income as well as address social issues existing within communities. The program’s community Workstream empowers cocoa growing communities to sensitize families and leaders regarding their development needs as well as creating a community based approach to responsible labor practices, women’s empowerment and educational issues. Jeff is also actively involved in the broader industry effort to achieve sustainability in the cocoa sector. In this work he serves on the community Workstream group of CocoaAction – a collaboration among the 10 largest cocoa and chocolate companies that is organized under the umbrella of the World Cocoa Foundation. Through 2020, CocoaAction will reach 200,000 farmers in Cote d’Ivoire and 100,000 farmers in Ghana – as well as working in the communities where these farmers live. The community work of CocoaAction will also address needs related to education, responsible labor practices and women’s empowerment. In addition to Community Development work, Jeff serves on the board of the International Cocoa Initiative – a multi-stakeholder foundation that addresses responsible labor practices in the cocoa growing sectors of West Africa. Jeff is also the chairman of the US Technical Advisory Group of the International Standards Organization (ISO) that is developing a global standard that will codify sustainable farming production practices for cocoa. Jeff received his Master’s Degree in Food Systems from The Ohio State University and his Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from Miami University of Ohio.
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    Simon Derrick

    Manager, Group Brand and Communication, Blue Skies
    Simon Derrick is Group Brand and Communications Manager for Blue Skies Limited. Blue Skies is a fresh-cut fruit company with factories in Ghana, Egypt, South Africa and Brazil. The company has received three Queens Awards for Enterprise in the Sustainable Development Category for its impact on communities and its commitment to adding value at source. Simon has management experience in developing of the Blue Skies brand with freshly squeezed juices in West Africa and snack fruit in the Netherlands. He has also led Internal and external communication of Blue Skies mission and values. Creation of marketing concepts for retail customers. Development and management of website, newsletter, social media content. Simon manages the global operations for Blue Skies Foundation in two continents. Involved developing management systems for the selection, development and evaluation of projects. Over forty projects currently running, including education, health and capacity building projects in Ghana and South Africa.
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    Curtis Etherly

    Director, Federal Affairs & International Stakeholder Relations, Coca Cola
    Curtis L. Etherly, Jr., Esq. serves as Director of Federal Affairs & International Stakeholder Relations for The Coca-Cola Company. In this capacity, Mr. Etherly interfaces with key congressional constituencies, including the Congressional Black Caucus, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the LGBT EQUALITY Caucus and the Veterans Jobs Caucus. A 15-year veteran of the Coca-Cola System, Mr. Etherly also leads the Company’s engagement with the African diplomatic corps, key U.S. government stakeholders and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in support of the Company’s business and philanthropic efforts across Sub-Saharan Africa. The Coca-Cola System is the largest private sector employer in Africa with over 70,000 associates and $US17 billion in announced investments across the continent between 2010 and 2020. Coca-Cola has been present in Africa since 1928 and operates in all 54 countries. The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation (TCCAF) has committed $US150 million to more than 200 projects across 48 countries on the continent. Key commitments include: the expansion of sustainable access to clean drinking water (RAIN Initiative), supporting women’s economic empowerment (5by20 Program), improving supply chain logistics for the transport of critical medicines and medical supplies (Project Last Mile), developing and enhancing sustainable local agriculture sourcing models (Source Africa) and youth development (“Youth Empowered for Success” Initiative). Mr. Etherly received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Yale University in 1990 and his Juris Doctor degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1995.
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    Andreas Blom

    Lead Economist, Education, World Bank Group
    Andreas Blom works as a Lead Economist in the World Bank’s global practice for Education with a focus on Africa. He supports management in implementing strategies to improve the quality of the World Bank’s education portfolio in Africa, serves as a Resource Person for Tertiary Education in the Region, supporting tertiary education teams and projects in Africa. He is also the task team leader of the Africa Centers of Excellence project. He specializes in the economic policy analysis of human capital and creation of knowledge, and their efficient use in society. Previously Andreas worked with Government of India to improve quality, access and financing of its higher education system. Further, he worked with Government of Pakistan to provide more and better training opportunities to Pakistani youth. He started his career in the World Bank in the Latin America and the Caribbean region where he worked seven years on higher education, training, labor markets and public spending. He authored several global and regional studies on the financing of higher education, student loans, labor markets, quality of education, and science, technology and innovation. He holds a master degree in development economics from the University of Aarhus, Denmark.
  • David C. Crane

    Vice President of Government Affairs, Autodesk
    As the head of Autodesk’s worldwide government affairs, David Crane works with policy makers on issues that are important to the company and its customers, including advanced manufacturing, intellectual property rights, trade and market access, data protection, privacy, security, infrastructure development, and sustainability and energy efficiency, among other issues. He has served as Chairman of the Policy Council of the Business Software Alliance, and sits on the Board of the Information Technology Industry Council. Before starting Autodesk’s government affairs practice, Mr. Crane was an attorney with Mayer, Brown & Platt (currently, Mayer, Brown) in Washington, D.C. He served as a Vice President for a civil liberties advocacy organization, and was chief of staff to a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He began his career in Washington as an intern in the Carter/Mondale White House and then served on the 1980 re-election campaign. He holds a JD from the Georgetown University Law Center.
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    Dr. Nader Imani

    CEO of Festo Didactic Inc., Festo Didactic Ltd
    Dr. Nader Imani joined Festo Didactic in 1992. Since coming to Festo Didactic, he has served in different positions, from Regional Manager to Sales Director for Europe. He continued his career at Festo Didactic to become the Head of Global Education at Festo Didactic in 2010 and has held that post until today. Currently, he holds the position of Chief Executive Officer of Festo Didactic Inc. in the United States and Festo Didactic Ltd. in Canada. His professional career outside of the industry includes Assistant Professorship at the University of Nantes. Dr. Imani holds degrees from Harvard Business School as well as St. Galle Business School and a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering of Ecole Centrale de Nantes. Additionally, he has acted as a participating Member of the Junior Enterprises Confederation in France and the Board Member of the Worldwide Promotionship e.V., in Germany. Currently, he is a Member of the Executive Board of WorldDidactic Association for promotion of Education Industry. During his career, Dr. Imani has been a fervent advocate of skills and skills promotion in education systems and been a promoter of skills competition at national, regional and international levels. Dr. Imani has been acting as an active partner of the UN agencies and bi- and multi-lateral development agencies to drive innovation in the field of technical and vocational education and training.
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    Carl Peters

    Director of Technical Training, The Lincoln Electric Company
    Responsible for managing the Lincoln Electric welding school, the technical sales training program, distribution training programs and end user training programs. Also the coordination of training programs for the military, skilled trades and youth programs. Develop training materials for the 4H, Skills USA, Boy Scouts of America, WorldSkills and FFA organizations. B.S. Industrial Engineering, Penn State University
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    Damien Shiels

    Program Manager, Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice, World Bank Group
    Damien Shiels is currently a Program Manager with T&C’s Competitive Sectors team and has held a range of roles at MIGA, the IFC, and the World Bank including Global Product Specialist for Industry, Program Manager for Latin America & the Caribbean, and numerous TTL and technical team positions on client facing projects in LAC, AFR, MNA, SAR and EAP in a range of sectors and topic areas (manufacturing, tourism, agribusiness, IT enabled services, labor skills development, investment promotion, investment policy, export promotion, cluster development, supplier linkages, among others). Before joining the World Bank he worked for Catholic Relief Services in the Dominican Republic, the American Arbitration Association, the law firm of Corboy & Dimetrio and the Center for Conflict Resolution, Chicago. He completed his graduate studies at Georgetown University (MSFS), his undergraduate at University College Dublin (BCL), and interim programs at the London School of Economics and De Paul Law School.
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    Lucy Mamganga Mariam Fye

    Senior Private Sector Development Specialist, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
    Lucy Fye is an economist with over 30 years of extensive experience managing small to large-scale projects as task team leader and team member. Subject matter expert in private sector development; particularly in public private partnerships in infrastructure, privatization, regulation, competitive industries, industry cluster interventions, export competitiveness and diversification, trade and trade logistics, investment climate and promotion and entrepreneurship development. She has worked as task team leader in over 15 projects in over 20 countries across Africa including field assignments to Tanzania, Rwanda and Ethiopia (with The African Development Bank). In addition to her core work, Ms. Fye is an active board member at the Mhina Tumaini Foundation which was co-founded with her daughters. Before joining the Bank, Ms. Fye worked at the UN in New York and in the Ministry of Finance and National Investment Board of the Gambia.
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    Rita Bulusu

    Agribusiness and partnerships Specialist, Initiative for Global Development
    Rita Bulusu is a sustainability and international development professional specializing in enabling the private sector to help tackle Africa’s economic and social development challenges while maximizing business value. With Accenture Sustainability Services, Rita worked closely with a variety of corporations and in particular consumer goods companies, to address sustainability issues within their supply chains from local sourcing to international certification. Rita has worked across the African continent with government ministries, multilaterals, corporations and NGOs to catalyze investment in agribusiness and facilitate meaningful cross-sector partnerships along agricultural value-chains. She is currently acting as strategic advisor to the Initiative for Global Development where she is leading the Agribusiness Task Force and supporting the Africa: Investment Rising campaign. She holds a B.A from the University of Manchester, UK and a master’s in Global Human Development from Georgetown University, USA.
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    Welela Ketema

    Program Officer, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
    Welela Ketema, infoDev’s representative in Ethiopia leads the implementation of the Ethiopia Climate Innovation Center (ECIC), one of infoDev’s global programs under the Climate Technology Program at the World Bank. The ECIC provides financial as well as other entrepreneurial support to clean technology entrepreneurs in Ethiopia. Welela brings twenty years of experience in strategy, financial management and private sector development. Prior to joining the World Bank Group in 2013, Welela spent three years serving as a strategy advisor to the Board Chairman of the East African Holdings share company –one of the largest privately held business conglomerates in Ethiopia. In this capacity Welela gained strong understanding and appreciation for the thriving private sector in Ethiopia. Prior to joining infoDev, Welela spent 10 years leading a number of planning and distribution teams at the Gap, Inc. in San Francisco, California. In this capacity, Welela managed a $500MM budget with the aim of balancing quality customer service and maximizing financial returns in the highly competitive field of fashion retail. Prior to that, Welela spent a few years at American Express Financial Services, Inc. where she held several analytical and financial management roles. Born and raised in Ethiopia, Welela completed her high school and higher-level education in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. Welela holds a BA in Business Administration and MBA in Venture management from the University of St. Thomas School of Business.
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    Mike Ehst

    Business Incubation Specialist, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
    Mike is a Business Incubation Specialist with the World Bank’s infoDev program, part of the global Trade and Competitiveness practice. His work focuses on entrepreneurship and innovation policy. With infoDev, he has helped to design and launch the Climate Technology Program that supports innovation centers in seven countries. Before joining infoDev, Mike worked for the Africa region of the World Bank focused on lending and research related to innovation policy. Previously Mike held positions with the science committee of the U.S. Congress and the U.S. National Academies of Science and worked on technology policy issues for the Japanese government. Before his work in public policy, Michael was an entrepreneur, running startup internet and software businesses. Mike received a BS in business from the University of Colorado and an MA in the economics of technological change from the George Washington University.
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    Nii Simmonds

    Private Sector Development Specialist, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
    Nii Simmonds works at The World Bank Group’s Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice and advises African countries on engaging their diaspora communities for private sector development. Functionally, he has held positions in accounting, corporate finance, strategy, supply chain and brand marketing. He has sector experience in agribusiness, consumer internet, private sector development, e-commerce and innovation in Africa. When he has time, he advises and mentors early-stage startups in agribusiness, small-scale manufacturing and other high-growth industries on innovative ideas that can scale. Prior to this, he worked with Booz Allen Hamilton doing strategy consulting, primarily focusing on pharmaceuticals, chemicals, consumer products and medical devices industries. In 2007, Mr. Simmonds was chosen as a TED Fellow, for the 1st TED Global Africa event in Arusha, Tanzania. He is also the 2009 co-organizer of the Annual Maker Faire Africa, organization focused on using STEM and engineering to inspire African youth and young adults into science and engineering sectors. Mr. Simmonds got his B.S. in Management/Finance from Smeal College of Business at Pennsylvania State University and a minor in Information Systems and Statistical Analysis. Mr. Simmonds holds an Executive Education Masters in Business Process Outsourcing and Strategic Management from the Wharton School.
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    Teleola Akinlawon

    Private Sector Development Consultant, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
    Teleola Akinlawon has been a consultant at the World Bank operating in the capacity of an analyst for 3 years. Her career at the bank started in the Poverty global practice, where she focused on research and data analysis for sub-Saharan Africa. In this capacity, she contributed to the policy dialogue on unemployment and job provision in Nigeria, Ghana, Mozambique and Sao Tome and Principe. She is currently working with the Trade and Competitiveness global practice focusing on corporate governance of Ghana’s State Owned Enterprises, skills development in sub-Saharan Africa and African diaspora engagement. Prior to working at the Bank, she worked with the Nigerian and Ghanaian government on public sector reform and poverty alleviation initiatives. In Ghana, she worked as a consultant to the Microfinance and Small Loans Center, Office of the President and In Nigeria, she worked with the Ministry of Economic planning and budgeting. She earned an international economics MPA from Cornell University and a political science bachelor’s degree from Bryn Mawr College, receiving awards of excellence in both programs.
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    Anne Ytreland

    Private Sector Development Specialist, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
    Anne Ytreland is a Private Sector Development Specialist in the World Bank’s Trade and Competitiveness Group. She works across the Africa region with a focus on policies and programs that support innovation and entrepreneurship. Her work is focused on enhancing firm access to markets, finance, skills and technology. Ms. Ytreland has contributed to various entrepreneurship development initiatives including business plan competitions and business incubation programs in West Africa. Before joining the World Bank, she worked as a Researcher for the United Nations and a Project Manager for Innovation Norway, a government agency dedicated to supporting the growth and internationalization of Norwegian businesses. Ms. Ytreland holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Suffolk University and a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University.
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    Ashraf Bouajina

    Private Sector Development Consultant, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
    Ashraf Bouajina is a Private Sector Development and Public Private Partnerships Consultant with the World Bank Group's Trade and Competitiveness Global Practice in Washington D.C. She is a legal advisor by training and has studied private international law and business in France, the United Kingdom and China. She has over 5 years of experience working as a legal advisor and analyst in law firms and in the private sector advising governments, investors, lenders, companies and development agencies. Since joining the World Bank, her role has been to provide analytical and legal support relating to projects in the fields of business environment improvement, private sector competitiveness, and investment promotion.
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    Jana Malinska

    Senior Program Officer, Climate Technology Program, InfoDev, World Bank Group
    Jana Malinska joined infoDev as a Senior Program Officer in the Climate Technology Program to lead development and coordination of the global Climate Innovation Centers and promote linkages within the network and with World Bank Group teams and external stakeholders. Jana brings 14 years of experience with international organizations, government, and private sector, focusing on business development and investment. Jana has led competitiveness and private sector development operations and technical assistance projects in more than 20 countries across 3 regions over her 7 years with the World Bank Group. Most recently, she coordinated the competitive industries portfolio in the MENA region focusing on business innovation and incubation and tourism, renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors. Prior to WBG, Jana was a Young Professional with OECD where she was a member of the advisory unit to the Secretary General and helped governments implement investment and public governance reforms. Jana holds Masters degrees from the London School of Economics and University of Economics in Prague and MBA from Universite de Lyon. She continued education at Harvard and MIT.
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    Diletta Doretti

    Operations Officer, InfoDev, World Bank Group
    Diletta joined infoDev in November 2012 as the program Operations Officer, focusing on strengthening the operational workflow. Prior to joining, Diletta was working with the Development Marketplace program at WBI's Innovation Labs, on supporting social entrepreneurs in India and Egypt. Previously, Diletta was designing and delivering training programs on Base of the Pyramid (BoP), Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and private sector development issues at the World Bank Institute. Diletta holds a MA in International Relations and Economics from Johns Hopkins SAIS.
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    Abolanle Surakat-Shittu

    Program Assistant, InfoDev, World Bank Group
    Bola Surakat is a Nigerian National who has been working at the World Bank since 1998. She currently works in the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Office as a Transaction Specialist and Event Planner. Before the Bank she worked at the Department of Energy and Department of Education. She went to college at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria.
  • WHERE: MC 2-800, World Bank HQ, 1818 H Street NW, Washington, DC
  • When: Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016
  • CONTACT: Tele Akinlawon
  • iakinlawon@worldbank.org

Follow the event via hashtag #WBAfricanDiaspora