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Leadership Matters

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Over the last eight weeks, African Diaspora Network has strategically pivoted to address the needs of the community. Our leadership has thoughtfully coordinated meaningful discussions and webinars with multi-lateral agencies, including International Organization for Migration, as well as small and medium-sized health care organizations. In collaboration with our network and the input of our board, we have worked to understand how to respond to immediate and long-term needs. 

Our goal is to develop an actionable and workable response to COVID-19. As part of the April 28 event, we released a healthcare survey asking experts across professional backgrounds in that industry to share their insights on paths toward implementing telemedicine and improving healthcare access and delivery.  Thank you to all those who have responded. The next steps are to assess the results of the survey and based on the responses, develop a working group on how we can effectively support the immediate needs of communities in Africa.

ADN is able to sustain this critical work thanks to the leadership of our board members, the generosity and support of our funders and sponsors, and the dedication of our small, but mighty team. We are excited to announce the new 2020-21 ADN Executive Advisory Council, consisting of cross-sector leaders bringing forth a wide array of specialties, resources, and skill sets to further the momentum of the organization.

Thank you to our 2018-2020 Executive Advisory Council who have completed their two year terms: Kamran Elahian, Mussie Haile, Dr. Ade Freeman, Zekarias Amsalu, Radhika Shah, Serge Ouedraogo, and Jenna O'Brien. With deep gratitude, we share our appreciation for your invaluable insights, guidance, and leadership.

Thank you,

Almaz Negash
Founder & Executive Director, African Diaspora Network
Learn more about the ADN Executive Advisory Council

The 2020-21 ADN Executive Advisory Council

The ADN Executive Advisory Council serves a two-year term as trusted advisors to the organization, offering their expertise, insights, resources, and connections to catalyze the momentum of the organization.
Yohannes Assefa
Board of Directors, Ethiopia Diaspora Trust Fund

Yohannes Assefa is the Director of Agriculture and Agribusiness at the USAID East Africa Trade and Investment Hub. The Hub works to deepen regional integration, increasing the competitiveness of select regional agricultural value chains, promotes two-way trade with the U.S. under AGOA and facilitates investment and technology to increase regional integration and trade. As part of his work, Mr. Assefa helped to facilitate 1.4 million mt of grain in the EAC region for a total value of nearly $500 million. Prior to joining the Hub, Mr. Assefa was a Director at Stalwart, Knowledge, Innovation and Technology Ltd., a Dubai-based consulting firm focusing on the development of financial and agricultural markets in developing countries
Josephine Fubara, PhD
Chief Science Officer, Sanofi Consumer Healthcare

She is head of R&D for Sanofi Consumer Health Care where she and her team are responsible for innovation for over a €5billion business. She is an R&D leader with over 22 years of experience in the pharmaceutical industry. Prior to Sanofi, Josephine was the Global R&D Head of all the OTC categories at Bayer Consumer HealthCare and spent 18+ years in various technical and business roles at Pfizer Consumer Healthcare leading innovation and development in key business categories like Pain, Respiratory and Digestive Health. Josephine has worked with global teams in various parts of the world, including North America, Europe and Asia.
Michael Moscherosch, PhD
Director, R&D Fellow, Social Innovation, Johnson & Johnson 

Michael has 25 years of experience with Johnson & Johnson Consumer in Research, Development & Engineering as well as Sustainability, both in North America and Germany. In his current role his main focus is on social innovation, finding and incubating health related startup companies in sub-Saharan Africa. Michael holds a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Stuttgart, Germany.
Abbey Omokhodion
Senior Finance Director IOTG, Intel Corporation

Abbey Omokhodion runs a multi-billion dollar portfolio of P&Ls within the Internet of Things division at Intel, partnering with operations leaders to drive strategy, grow the business profitably, scale solutions, and activate new markets.
Martin Russell, PhD
Advisor, The Networking Institute

Martin completed his PhD on Diaspora Engagement at the Clinton Institute where he remains an affiliate. He was previously a visiting fellow at UNU-MERIT and Associate Director of Diaspora Matters. He has trained, spoken, and written on diaspora engagement in Africa, Caribbean, Central Asia, Central and Latin America, Europe, Middle East, UK and the U.S.
Tewelde Stephanos

Tewelde started his professional life in Silicon Valley. He moved to Eritrea in the 90s to start tFanus Enterprises — one of the first Internet Service Providers. Building technology-based services that did not exist in the country before, empowering employees to make decisions consistent with the company’s customer-centric culture, and profit-sharing were key innovations tFanus was recognized for.  Although he no longer has interest in tFanus, Tewelde remains optimistic that young entrepreneurs are the path forward to Africa’s revival. He supports ADN and is eager to help in advancing its vision.
Kedest Tesfagiorgis
Program Officer, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Kedest Tesfagiorgis is a Program Officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and is part of the Discovery & Translational Sciences team focused on the Grand Challenges program, a program aiming to solve global health and development challenges. She serves as an Advisor to the foundation’s Africa team on health research and pan-African initiatives.
Learn more about the ADN Leadership and Team here

ADN Virtual Impact & Innovation Forums 2020

African Diaspora Network convenes Africans, diasporans, and friends of Africa from across sectors ranging from government to business to NGOs to academia in order to strengthen partnerships and to advance the development of the African continent. Throughout the year, ADN gathers at key national and international hubs of influence, including Silicon Valley, the center of innovation and entrepreneurship; New York; the center of finance; and Washington D.C., the center of diplomacy and policy.

The ADN Impact & Innovation Forums bring together leaders from the private and public sectors, policymakers, philanthropists, academia, and NGO to share ideas on ways to strengthen diaspora engagement. 

2020 Topics include 

  • Diaspora Social Capital
  • Innovating Entrepreneurship and Access to Healthcare
  • Finance Strategy and Human Capital Development in Africa

April 1:
Skoll World Forum 

April 28:
Healthcare Innovation

View the full recording of the latest ADN Impact & Innovation Forum

Trending News 

Facebook, telcos to build huge subsea cable for Africa and Middle East

Facebook,  and a group of telecom companies including China Mobile International, MTN GlobalConnect, Orange and Vodafone,  are collaborating to build the “most comprehensive” subsea cable to serve the African continent and Middle East region where nearly a billion people are still offline. Read more.

65 Foundations & Investors Who Fund Education Ventures in Africa

Although there are thousands of entrepreneurs focused on education reform across Africa, there is no easy way for them to see which funders support what kind of work and where. There is no quick way to know who is appropriate for talk to at which stage of their organization’s development. This list aims to help solve that problem, so that leaders and entrepreneurs can spend more time focused on what matters most — building models that transform learning outcomes for children and youth. Read more.

Online Resources During COVID-19

World Health Organization COVID-19 FAQs

WHO is continuously monitoring and responding to this outbreak. This Q&A will be updated as more is known about COVID-19, how it spreads and how it is affecting people worldwide. For more information, check back regularly on WHO’s coronavirus pages.

The Center for Disease Control & Prevention provides the latest updates on the pandemic response in the United States. Find guidance on symptoms, cases in the U.S., and recommended precautions for community health and well-being.
Support for U.S.-based Small Business: CARES Act
Qualifying U.S.-based small business owners can determine their eligibility for financial support through the CARES Act.
Free Virtual College Courses
Find 54 free online courses provided by top-ranked colleges in the United States, including Princeton University, Harvard University, and Columbia University. Topics include Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Technologies, Making Government Work in Hard Places, and Computer Science for Business Professionals. 
Virtual Learning Resources
Nordic countries have opened up their e-learning solutions to the world for free. Take a look at 40+ remote learning solutions from Estonia, Finland, Denmark, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, and Sweden that are welcome to help teachers and parents. 

Grant Opportunities

ASPIRE Grants for the Congo Basin Due July 15

The Congo Basin rainforests comprise one of the most important centers of biodiversity in the world. While efforts are underway to conserve this invaluable region, habitat conversion, mineral extraction, forest degradation and deforestation continue at accelerating rates. Furthermore, the Congo Basin in particular is predicted to be most severely affected by climate change. To meet these growing challenges, Central Africa urgently needs a new generation of environmental and conservation experts. These small research grants are designed to support young Africans in their research. This program is run by the Conservation Action Research Network (CARN), a member of the Congo Basin Institute (CBI). Learn more and apply by July 15, 2020.
Learn more and apply for the Aspire Grants by July 15

Take the Online Amplifying Abundance in Africa MasterClass Series

Interested in learning more about African Diaspora Investment Symposium? Seeking professional development and learning opportunities remotely? ADN welcomes you to our online repository of workshop sessions from ADIS2019.

Are you an entrepreneur, business leader, investor, or public sector leader interested in the hottest trends on the Continent and in the Diaspora? Want to learn more about starting or scaling your business and/or investments?

Here’s your chance to dive deep into some of the hottest investment and development trends on the continent from thought leaders, business leaders, innovators, investors, entrepreneurs, philanthropists, academia, government, and NGO leaders from around the world.

Access the Amplifying Abundance in Africa Online MasterClass
African Diaspora Investment Symposium (ADIS) is an annual convening in Silicon Valley that celebrates and champions the entrepreneurial and innovative spirit of Africans in the Diaspora and friends of Africa.

Follow the footsteps of entrepreneurs, investors, and leaders who have walked the path of pursuing investments and opportunities in Africa through Investment Ecosystem and Entrepreneurship & Innovation Ecosystems.

Join African Diaspora Network Today

Be a part of our growing organization and become a member or support African Diaspora Network in one of the following ways:
  • Be an organizational sponsor and support the African Diaspora Network to bring together diverse people from around the world to collaborate and work together. 
  • Sponsor the 2021 African Diaspora Investment Symposium 
  • Support our efforts to scale the Builders of Africa’s Future program   
  • Be a member of the African Diaspora Network, a growing community of Africans and friends of Africa
  • Be a mentor for the upcoming Builders of Africa’s Future cohort  
  • Be a volunteer and support African Diaspora Network initiatives
Support African Diaspora Network

African Diaspora Investment Symposium Summary and Next Steps

African Diaspora Investment Symposium 2020 Highlights

African Diaspora Network is pleased to share a full summary and action report that highlights key takeaways and lessons learned during African Diaspora Investment Symposium 2020. Learn more about our fifth annual symposium theme, read our day-by-day summary, check out our photo gallery, and view our video recap. 

Read the #ADIS20 Summary and Action Report
African Diaspora Investment Symposium 2020 - Important Links

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