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Celebrating Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro
on Africa Day

Dear Friends,

Happy Africa Day! This May 25th, we celebrate each one of you as we work to bring together Africans on the continent, the diaspora, and friends of Africa to actualize their full potential, activate their entrepreneurial spirit, and strategically mobilize financial and intellectual resources to ensure a brighter future for the African continent. Our mission is true to the spirit of unity that Africa Day enlivens.

We joyously commemorate this day by honoring one of our most esteemed champions, Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro, CEO of Global Fund for Women and one of the founding members of African Diaspora Network. For the last eight years, she has championed the work of ADN alongside her career of catalyzing opportunity for women and girls. Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro is President and CEO of Global Fund for Women. She is an activist for women and girls’ health and human rights, and passionate about using philanthropy and technology to drive social change. 

To Musimbi Kanyoro, we thank you for contributing to ADN as a bold visionary and driver of change and unity. Together, we will continue to develop a global community in which we engage partners and community members to change the lives of youth, women, educators, farmers, entrepreneurs, and all the people of Africa and the communities in which we live.

As always,
Thank you,

Almaz Negash
Founder & Executive Director, African Diaspora Network
Executive in Residence, School of Global Innovation & Leadership, SJSU

Honoring Musimbi Kanyoro, PhD, on Africa Day

Born in Kenya, Musimbi traces her passion for human rights, peace, and justice to her Quaker family and community.

She is one of 10 children – every daughter given the same educational opportunities as the sons. “I want the same for every girl and woman, no exceptions,” Musimbi has said.
Musimbi’s early work focused on the self-determination of African peoples and the abolition of apartheid in South Africa. She was a national student leader who quickly took leadership on a wider stage, serving on United Nations and other International and Ecumenical Youth Forums, including an early role as an Executive Secretary for the Lutheran World Federation.
TED Talk by Musimbi Kanyoro, PhD: "To solve the world's biggest problems, invest in women and girls."
In 1998, Musimbi was appointed general secretary (CEO) of the World YWCA, the first non-white woman to hold the role. She made the organization a go-to organization for young women’s leadership and for HIV prevention and care. She also transformed the World YWCA into a young-women-led organization, with young women under 30 making up 55% of the Global Board of trustees.
Before joining Global Fund for Women as CEO, Musimbi was Director for Population and Reproductive Health at David and Lucile Packard Foundation, managing the $30 million grantmaking portfolio. Learn more about Musimibi Kanyoro, PhD, and her work at Global Fund for Women.

Top Level Achievements at GFW

Musimbi Kanyoro, PhD, and Leila Hessini
During Musimbi’s eight years of leadership, Global Fund for Women embarked on a mission to be a global champion for the human rights of women and girls. Prior to her time, Global Fund for Women viewed itself as primarily a grantmaker. The persistent courage of our grantee partners emboldened her to grow our grantmaking and embrace advocacy to lift unheard women’s voices into the spotlight.
Under Musimbi’s leadership, Global Fund for Women committed to making grantee partners visible activists by leading campaigns that raise awareness and money, getting new players in the mix, and elevating the excellence of ideas, arts, and action often invisible to the general public. Creativity opened doors to people who might otherwise never have come to our home. GFW has built a stronger base for women-led organizations and their movements to pursue justice and be recognized for their work.
Musimbi plans to continue and expand her work as a social activist and will be active on the boards of the UN Global Compact Group and University World Colleges (UWC) International. She will also continue to serve on the UN Women Civil Society Advisory Board.

"I Am an African" by Thabo Mbeki

Thabo Mbeki on behalf of the African National Congress in Cape Town, 8 May 1996

"I am an African.

I owe my being to the hills and the valleys, the mountains and the glades, the rivers, the deserts, the trees, the flowers, the seas and the ever-changing seasons that define the face of our native land."

Thabo Mbeki, then vice president of South Africa under the presidency of Nelson Mandela, made a speech on May 6, 1996, on bhealf of the African National Congress in Cape Town. His speech marks the passing of the new Constitution of South Africa and defined the zeitgeist of the post-Apartheid period of South Africa. In honor of Africa Day, we encourage a spirit of unity and community through the words of Mbeki. The full speech can be found here.

Harnessing the Ripple Effect of ADN

African Diaspora Network seeks past participants of ADN events, including African Diaspora Investment Symposium (ADIS 2016 - 2019) and our Impact & Innovation Series, to share the takeaways of their experience. Organizations such as LoftyInc Capital Management, Gebeya, and Flutterwave have benefited from connections made through ADN and our signature African Diaspora Investment Symposium to meet some incredible people.
"While LoftyInc Management partners were attending the 2017 ADIS, African cohort members of YC & 500 Startups came to meet us there. As a result of knowing their backgrounds from our team on the ground and meeting them at ADIS, we have since been confident enough to invest in three Africa-facing ventures: Flutterwave, Printivo and Kangpe/Reliance HMO. Their average value has appreciated 2-3x in 2 years. They are part of our Afropreneurs Fund portfolio, which seeks to raise up to $60M to do more of the same." - Marsha Wulff, LoftyInc. Capital Management
Help us harness our ripple effect and fill out the survey to amplify the impact of your work as we prepare for our landmark fifth annual convening, African Diaspora Investment Symposium 2020 (ADIS2020). *Note: The final set of questions are specific to past and current awardees of Builders of Africa's Future. We thank you for contributing your feedback and sharing your stories!
Give Us Your Feedback! Share Your Stories & Amplify ADN

Become a Member of ADN!

Join Us Today & Get Access to Your 2019 ADN Membership Benefits

Your membership enables you to unique access to ADN and the global leaders, innovators, investors and entrepreneurs like you who seek to uplift the African continent. We have an exciting year ahead, with convenings across the United States and Africa, supporting our Builders of Africa Awardees and other startups in Africa and building momentum for ADIS2020. Learn about membership levels and benefits on the African Diaspora Network site.

ADN Membership Levels:

  • Friends of Africa
  • Sustainers
  • Donors Circle
  • Vision 2025
Sign Up to Join ADN as a Member Today!

 Abundance in Africa MasterClass Series Now Available to All  Download and View Today

Panelists for Human Capital Investment: Activating the Potential of Africa 2050 include moderator Semhar Araia of UNICEF USA and panelists Rufaro Kangai, Lee Sorensen, Dr. Phillip Clay, and Thane Kreiner
9+ Hours of MasterClass Content Now Accessible to All!
ADN is delighted to announce the complete release of the the Amplifying Abundnace in Africa Online MasterClass. Thank you to all those who have downloaded the videos and supported us in our efforts to make the videos accessible to everyone for the purpose of learning and understanding the opportunities in investment in Africa.

Learn about and understand opportunities in innovation, investment, and entrepreneurship across Africa by accessing 9+ hours of content including:
  • Selling Real Estate in Africa
  • Understanding Africa’s Advantage on Climate Change
  • Best Tactics for Financial Capital
  • What V.C. Wants from Entrepreneurs
  • Top Innovation Companies in Silicon Valley and what they see in Africa
  • Law, Regulation, and Best Practice in Africa
  • How to Pitch to an Investor

Read the ADIS2019 Summary & Action Report

Learn more and read our ADIS2019 Summary and Action Report

"[The] ADIS2019 conference was a spectacular success. Excellent discussion topics, Engaging panelists, Dynamic keynote speakers and Invigorating interactions with Africans in Diaspora and Friends of Africa and ample networking opportunities. All with a focus on development of the African continent. I hope you can top this in ADIS2020."  

Professor Tokunbo Ogunfunmi, Santa Clara University

Community Partners Announcements

Apply By June 15 to the Stanford Seed Transformation Program 2020

Stanford Seed is looking for high-potential CEOs or founders based in Africa and India who are motivated for growth. The Seed Transformation Program is an unconventional, high-touch learning experience that goes beyond acquiring business skills. Stanford's world-renowned faculty and dedicated team of experts work with leaders throughout their 12-month journey to growth.
Apply Now to the Stanford Seed Transformation Program 2020

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