Planning committee

KEDEST TESFAGIORGIS
KEDEST TESFAGIORGIS
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. Born to Eritrean parents and raised in Ethiopia in a large family, she grew up in a time of civil war and famine—and launched her career in health and development as her country began making historic progress, achieving every single health-related Millennium Development Goal. Kedest’s team is focused on ensuring that innovation champions closest to the problems that need solving are empowered to work on them. Over the past decade, her work has centered on facilitating partnerships with scientists and science funders, primarily through Grand Challenges, a program launched in 2003 to encourage innovators to take risks to solve the hardest health problems affecting those most in need. Kedest has helped grow Grand Challenges into a global network, supporting partners in India, across Africa, and elsewhere to create their own innovation programs. In addition to continuing to run the Grand Challenges platform together with a growing set of partners, she also convenes advocates, funders, policymakers, and thought leaders to create a global innovation ecosystem that consistently delivers impact. Kedest is responsible for the Grand Challenges Annual Meeting, the foundation’s flagship platform for accelerating science for impact. She has attended all but one of the 16 annual meetings on five continents so far. Beyond her work within the foundation, she serves as an advisor to people seeking to build effective coalitions and networks, especially in low- and middle-income countries.
ABBEY OMOKHODION
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.

DR. MARTIN RUSSEL
DR. MARTIN RUSSEL

 

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 US.

DUNCAN GOLDIE-SCOT
DUNCAN GOLDIE-SCOT

Musoni Kenya, Ltd

Duncan is the Chairman of Musoni Kenya, Ltd. As an entrepreneur and investor, 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.

DR. MICHAEL MOSCHEROSCH
DR. MICHAEL MOSCHEROSCH

Director R&D, Fellow, Social Innovation,
Johnson & Johnson
Consumer Inc.

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.

TEWELDE STEPHANOS
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.

YOHANNES ASSEFA
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
DR JOSEPHINE FUBARA
DR JOSEPHINE FUBARA, Ph.D,

Chief Science Officer at 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.