Our Team



Founder and Managing Partner, Ignite Venture Studio; Board Chairman, African Diaspora Network

Josh Ghaim is the Founder and Managing Partner of Ignite Venture Studio, a new brand and innovation accelerator focused in the Health and Beauty markets as well as investments and support of Women and Minority led start-ups. Prior to his new venture, Josh was the former Chief Technology Officer of Johnson & Johnson Consumer Health.
Raj Aji

Raj Aji

General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer, BILL

Raj Aji is the General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer at BILL, a leading provider of cloud-based software that simplifies, digitizes, and automates complex, back-office financial operations for small and midsize businesses (NYSE: BILL). He is a legal and technology executive with experience living and working in Silicon Valley, Asia and the Middle East with financial technology, e-commerce, enterprise and media companies. He is passionate about using innovative technology solutions to provide financial services to consumers and small businesses. As a technology leader he has worked with banks and telecom companies to enable mobile payments and other financial services in East and West Africa, Asia, Europe and North America. Prior to BILL, Raj worked with Intuit, Cisco Systems and global law firms. Raj studied engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology in Mumbai and got his law degree at the University of California, Berkeley.


Head of Engineering, Payments Conversion at Stripe.

Twum Djin is a software executive with extensive experience in organizational leadership, large scale system architecture, and product management. Prior to Stripe, Twum was the Chief Technology Officer at Goodwater Capital, an early-stage venture capital firm focused exclusively on consumer tech companies. Twum served as the chairman of the ADN board from 2018 – 2021.
Josephine Fubara


Chief Science Officer, Consumer Healthcare; Sanofi

Dr. Josephine Fubara is the Chief Science Officer for Sanofi’s Consumer Healthcare business, where she leads a global team responsible for managing the organization’s end-to end science agenda and operations spanning five categories covering pain care, allergy, digestive wellness, cough, cold & flu, and physical & mental wellness, representing over €5.0 billion (2022) of business. Josephine is a purpose-driven leader, building high-performing teams and delivering impactful everyday health & well-being for consumers & patients  around the world, with the goal to make self-care simple and bring health in their hands.

Rick Levenson

CTO, Rippleworks

Rick is the CTO of Rippleworks, a nonprofit foundation that is relentlessly focused on the needs of social ventures, providing the practical support entrepreneurs and their teams need to improve more lives across the global south. Previously, he had spent his career as a technologist, starting in the early days of Silicon Valley, from research labs to nascent startups.


Head of Health Equity- Genentech Commercial, Medical and Government Affairs at Roche Genentech

Ndeye Makalou leads a team of people committed to embedding Health Equity as a foundational practice to advance Genentech D&I Commitments and Roche Pharma vision. She is accountable for catalyzing and driving a sustainable approach to advance Health Equity best practices that center marginalized and underserved patients and drive better treatment outcomes. Ndeye deeply believes that strengthening the Healthcare system in Africa and public -private partnership will lead to improved health outcomes and a brighter and healthier future for the people in Africa.


Founder & CEO of ADN

Almaz began ADN in 2010 to inform and engage Africans in the Diaspora and facilitate direct collaboration with social entrepreneurs, innovators, and business leaders to invest in Africa. For the last two decades, Negash has sought to improve the quality of life of our communities through both local and global partnerships.


US-West EY Private Leader and Assurance Partner, Ernst & Young

Innocent Shumba is a member of EY’s Assurance practice and has diverse accounting and auditing experience. He is involved in several organizations, including the EY Black Professional Network, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Certified Fraud Examiners, Institute of Internal Auditors and the National Association of Black Accountants.

Kedest Tesfagiorgis

Deputy Director of Global Partnerships & Grand Challenges, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Kedest Tesfagiorgis leads the Global Partnerships & Grand Challenges team within the Discovery & Translational Sciences group at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Kedest is deeply committed to building collaborative, inclusive, long-term partnerships that address the biggest challenges in health and development. Her career has been rooted in the conviction that, as a global community in pursuit of equity, we go faster and further by working together. Kedest is a non-voting member of the board.


Founder, Winkler Group; Board Member, African Diaspora Network

Agnieszka has held numerous leadership positions as founder of two companies, Winkler Advertising and TeamToolz until they were acquired and on boards of directors of public and private companies such as RenoAir, SuperCuts, Cheesecake Factory and numerous not for profits such as Ascension Health, Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County, the board of trustees of Holy Names University. She currently serves on the board of African Diaspora Network, the Executive Committee of the Board of the Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship at SCU, as a Trustee of Santa Clara University and is Chair of the Board of Directors of the Jesuit School of Theology. She has a deep interest in building more equitable societies through social impact enterprises.
Manoj Jain

Manoj Jain

Chief Financial Officer at SingleStore

Manoj is an accomplished finance executive with a proven track record of success in high-growth technology companies. Based out of Silicon Valley, Manoj has held key leadership roles in companies such as SingleStore, CrowdStrike, Financial Engines, SquareTrade, and Marin Software. Prior to his work in the technology sector, Manoj spent over a decade with PricewaterhouseCoopers, gaining valuable experience in finance and accounting. In his last gig as the CFO at SingleStore, Manoj played a pivotal role in the company’s growth, helping it raise over $275M in equity funding and scale operations from $20M to over $75M in annual revenue.



Founder & CEO

Almaz began ADN in 2010 to inform and engage Africans in the Diaspora and facilitate direct collaboration with social entrepreneurs, innovators, and business leaders to invest in Africa. For the last two decades, Negash has sought to improve the quality of life of our communities through both local and global partnerships.
Omolayo Nkem Ojo

Omolayo Nkem Oyudo

Director of Programs and Operations

Omolayo is a multi-lingual strategist and researcher with over ten years experience in international development and has worked with or for African diaspora communities across the US, Europe and Africa to mobilise, impact and advocate for their needs and interests. Omolayo holds an MSc with Distinction in Migration, Mobility and Development from the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. Prior to joining ADN, Omolayo was a research manager and gender specialist at DMA Global where she oversaw key projects for organisations such as the World Bank, IOM and others.
Dan Hartz


Finance & Operations Advisor and Founding Board Member

Dan is on Envoy, Inc.’s Finance team. He is a founding board member of African Diaspora Network and now helps to develop and implement strategic initiatives. Prior to joining Envoy, Dan was senior manager of Golden Mean Capital Partners, a group focused on economic development in African agriculture.
Megan Hunsberger


Associate Director of Programs and Operations

Megan runs ADN’s African Diaspora Investment Symposium and Impact and Innovation Forums, ADN’s signature conference series, and shares the impact of ADN’s program through social and digital media. She believes digital media is a powerful tool in telling the narrative of changemakers making the world a better place each day.

Faduma Mohamed

YALI LL Diaspora Engagement Program Lead

Faduma is a cross-continental economic development expert with over a decade-long background in project/program management, global affairs and community engagement. She holds a Masters in Global Affairs and Management from the Thunderbird School of Management at Arizona State University. Before joining ADN, Faduma was the Lead, Partner Programmes at the African Management Institute, driving world-class programme delivery by establishing project management best practices and supervising the implementation of 30+ pan-african multi-sectoral programmes.
Brett Cave

Brett Cave

Entrepreneurship Programs Manager

Brett is a former Fulbright-Hayes Fellow and accomplished, impact-driven Program Manager, entrepreneur, and trainer with over 10 years of expertise across the educational, nonprofit, corporate, and technology sectors.
Brett has an undergraduate degree in French from Clark Atlanta University and Masters in International Intercultural Management from the School for International Training.
She is passionate about education, the advancement, and positive sustainable development of the continent and people of the African diaspora. 
Fatima Diallo

Fatima Diallo

YALI LL Diaspora Engagement Associate

Fatima is a specialist in International Development, Research, Education, Digital Media Management, Community Outreach & Engagement, and Program/Project Coordination. She holds a Bachelor Degree double major in International Development & Social Change as well as in French and Francophone Studies. She is passionate about building tangible sustainable development and impact for Africa and its Diaspora.

Hatim Chraibi

Executive-in-Residence, ADN Telehealth Pilot

Hatim Chraibi is the co-founder and managing director at SPIRE Advisory Group, a virtual accelerator based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He holds more than 20 years of experience in the medical device industry in upstream and downstream capacities globally. Hatim received a bachelor degree in finance from the University of San Francisco and an MBA from McGill University. He also participated in an exchange program at the Luigi Bocconi University in Milan, Italy. Before co-founding SPIRE Advisory Group, Hatim has had tenures at Philips Medical Systems, Covidien and other medical device companies.


Information Technology Associate

Yinka was the CEO and creative director for Blue Wave Media, a multi-media production company. Prior to that, she worked in Vancouver, British Columbia for fifteen years in various capacities: a freelance web developer and video editor as well as a media content specialist for Post Time Technologies.


Travis Adkins

President and CEO, U.S. African Development Foundation

Travis Adkins is USADF’s 10th President and CEO, effective January 18, 2022. Previously, he served as the Deputy Assistant Administrator for Africa at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Mr. Adkins is also a Lecturer of African and Security Studies at the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, where he concurrently teaches in the Prison Scholars Program of Georgetown’s Prisons and Justice Initiative. As an international development leader, he has over two decades of experience working in governance, education, humanitarian affairs, and women’s and youth empowerment in over 50 nations throughout Africa and the Middle East.
Yohannes Assefa


Director of Market Systems, DT Global, Inc.

Yohannes Assefa is an experienced international development professional with senior management experience spanning over 25 years of experience in the United States and Africa. Mr. Assefa served as Chief of Party, Director, Senior Technical Adviser and consultant on various donor funded projects in 16 African countries. Mr. Assefa served as Chief of Part of the USAID-funded Ethiopia WTO Accession Plus Project, Country Director/CoP for USAID Market Systems for Growth and was Senior Technical Advisor during the establishment of the Ethiopian Commodities Exchange (ECX). He is currently the Director of Market Systems for DT-Global, an international development consulting firm.
Ruma Bhagat

Ruma Bhagat

Senior Science Leader, Health Equity & Population Science, Product Development Medical Affairs Genentech, Inc.

Ruma Bhagat has over 20 years of experience in the Pharmaceutical industry working in various roles throughout her career. Ruma completed her Bachelors in Medicine and Bachelors in Science degree from Mumbai University and Masters in Public Health in International Health Systems from Tulane University.

Ruma is currently in the role of Senior science leader in the Health Equity and Population science team leading Strategic partnership pillar. In her role, Ruma is focused on Advancing Inclusive research by scientifically Driven inclusion of diverse and underrepresented patients in clinical trials. Ruma’s diverse and extensive experience in drug development, her passion for innovation and driving for results will bring significant value to her role at ADN.

Dr. Latanya Mapp Frett


President and CEO, Global Fund for Women

Latanya Mapp Frett is President and CEO of Global Fund for Women, one of the world’s leading foundations for gender justice. Global Fund for Women has fueled feminist movements across the world for over 30 years, putting resources directly in the hands of courageous activists who are working to end oppressive policies and change entrenched norms. As a feminist fund, Global Fund for Women offers flexible support to a diverse group of partners—more than 5,000 groups across 175 countries so far—to create meaningful change that will last beyond our lifetimes.

Loksan Harley

Executive Director of Homelands Advisory

Loksan Harley is a UK-based British-Chinese Independent Migration and Diaspora Specialist, with extensive experience as a consultant to the United Nations, governments, and non-profits in research, policy development, capacity-building and technical assistance across Europe, Africa, and Asia-Pacific. In particular, he has conducted research and advised a number of countries on ways to engage their diasporas.
Dr. Michael Moscherosch


Founder – Periodic Element LLC

Michael is the founder of Periodic Element LLC, a consultancy focused on creating social impact and improving employee job satisfaction through purposeful support of social startups. In 2023, Michael retired from Johnson & Johnsen, after 28+ years in Research, Development & Engineering, both in North America and Germany. He is a business strategist with expertise in product development and implementation, technology transfer and adaptation as well as environmental sustainability and footprinting for the consumer healthcare sector. His last position was focused on social innovation, finding and incubating healthcare related startups in Africa. Michael is continuing to support startups in sub-Saharan Africa, and he is currently a member of the Executive Advisory Council of the African Diaspora Network. Michael holds a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Stuttgart, Germany.
Roland Pearson

Roland Pearson

Vice President and Executive Director, Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter (TCIS)

Roland Pearson is an internationally recognized senior executive, who over 30 years has built national and international, private, and public institutions that deliver sustained social and economic impact and commercial value. He is the Vice President and Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity International’s Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter (TCIS) – leading a global team of highly motivated and diverse professionals to conceptualize and prototype, and eventually scale and catalyze transformative market-oriented solutions that will accelerate the provision of safe, secure, sustainable habitats for the nearly 3 billion people who are or are projected to be subsisting in no or substandard shelter. Most recently, Roland was the Director and Portfolio Lead driving strategy, business development and business execution of the finance and investment portfolio at Palladium, a global impact firm.
Ella-Tamar Adhanan

Ella-Tamar Adhanan

Senior Vice President at Silicon Valley Bank, Division of First Citizens Bank

Ella-Tamar Adhanan, Senior Vice President at Silicon Valley Bank, Division of First Citizens Bank, driving global business development and market expansion. Her work concentrates on empowering entrepreneurs and investors from emerging international markets through SVB’s platform as they scale in the US. Before assuming her current role, Ella was part of the Global Fund Banking team at SVB, focusing on banking and lending services to venture capital and private equity firms in New York. Her prior experience also includes a pivotal tenure at Morgan Stanley, where she served as a fixed-income advisor to institutional investors.



ADN Founding Board & Co-Chair

Dr Kanyaro is a strategist for non-profit management and board leadership. Dr. Musimbi Kanyoro was President and CEO of Global Fund for Women from 2011 to 2019. During her time at Global Fund for Women, Dr. Kanyoro saw the organization surpass $140 million in grantmaking. She is globally recognized for her leadership of organizations and initiatives that advance women’s and girls’ human rights, and philanthropy for communities.


Associate Professor of Int’l Business and Int’l Affairs, George Washington University

Leisl is also the co-director of GWSB’s OntheBoard program, a fellowship program designed to promote women on corporate boards. Dr. Riddle has written extensively about diasporas and development, international entrepreneurship, and trade and investment promotion.


Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria

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


Head of International Growth, Interswitch

Chris Folayan is the Head of International Growth at Interswitch (North America) an African born multi-billion dollar fintech business. Chris is an award-winning serial-entrepreneur who has started, built and exited multiple multi-million dollar businesses globally. He was recently named one of Africa’s most influential people in 2022. Born and raised in Nigeria, Chris started his first company before he turned 8 years old and has been passionate about building businesses, fund raising, mentoring and expanding companies globally ever since. Chris is an author, mentor, inventor, public speaker, and sits on several global boards. A graduate of San Jose State University Chris is an out of the box thinker always looking to help everyone succeed.


PhD, Center for African Studies, Stanford University

Laura is an anthropologist of youth, media and popular culture. She has lived and worked in Zambia, Zimbabwe and South Africa focusing on questions of aesthetics and politics, temporality and youth culture, the links of longing and belonging among southern African cities, and the nexus of media and development.


Investor, Founder and CEO, Ujama

Hugh Molotsiis the founder and CEO ofUjama, a mobile platform to help parents form communities to help each other. Hugh also advises and invests in startups and is an active practitioner and teacher of Lean Startup Methodologies. In 2015, Hugh concluded a 22-year career at Intuit as Engineering Fellow and Vice President of Innovation.


Musoni Kenya, Ltd

Duncan is the Chairman of Musoni Kenya, Ltd. As an entrepreneur and investo, he has been investing in startup companies in Africa for more than ten years and pioneered the use of mobile payments in micro-finance institutions (MFIs). He co-founded the first 100% cashless MFI and created a company to create credit profiles using mobile data.