Amidi Ag Alwaly
Amidi has been committed to improving the lives of pastoral populations, especially across Northern Mali, since 1995 when he started working for TASSAGHT. He is now the Coordinator of TASSAGHT and Billital Maroobé Network's focal point in Mali, a sub-regional support organization for pastoralists. He has led projects in hard-to-reach areas and now ensures coordination of the STAMP project with the teams in the regions of Gao, Menaka, Timbuktu, Mopti, and Kidal.
Agricultural and Livelihoods Advisor, CRS
Olawale is an Agriculture and Livelihoods Expert with over 15 years of experience in capacity building, value chains, and sustainable agriculture. He was Agricultural Livelihoods Team Lead for Feed the Future’s Nigeria Livelihoods project. Olawale facilitated agriculture market recovery through private sector engagement in Northeastern Nigeria and increased donor levels for various institutions. He holds a bachelor’s degree in agriculture and a master’s degree in Social Work in Community Development from the University of Ibadan.
Senior Value Chain Advisor, ICCO
Idrissa is a Value Chain Specialist with more than 20 years of experience in implementing value chain projects with a diverse range of actors: farmers, cooperatives, private sector and government. Previously, Idrissa has been involved in several value chain projects in Burkina Faso, Mali and Senegal for ICCO Cooperation. Currently, as Country Lead in Senegal, Idrissa is coordinating the STARS program to follow the market system development approach.
Director, Catalyzing Investment, ACDI/VOCA
Heather has worked to improve financial services and economic opportunities in emerging and frontier markets for over 10 years. At ACDI/VOCA, she designs and implements strategies that catalyze investment and increase financial inclusion for SMEs. She also works for AV Ventures, ACDI/VOCA’s impact investment subsidiary, in impact and financial management for its funds in Ghana and Central Asia. Heather has a Master’s Degree in International Business from the Fletcher School at Tufts University.
Senior Technical Advisor - Microfinance, CRS
marc has worked in pro-poor microfinance for over 15 years, with field experience in more than 20 countries. As Microfinance Senior Technical Advisor, he leads CRS’s work on the SILC-PSP methodology and has written the manuals and trainer guides used in SILC programs across the agency. Previously he worked with Freedom from Hunger, where he supported several African MFIs and contributed to the development of the Saving for Change methodology.
President & CEO, Connexus Corporation
Anita is a rural and agricultural finance expert with 30 years of experience in finance and enterprise development. Over the past ten years, she has built Connexus into a global consulting firm, with long-term projects in Asia, Africa and Latin America. She spearheaded the initial Cracking the Nut Conference and continues to play a role in supporting its annual learning events. Anita has designed and led participatory trainings in English, Spanish and French.
Agricultural Economist/Nutritionist, CIAT
Christine is an Agricultural Economist/Nutritionist at the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) working on agriculture-nutrition linkages and inclusive business models for linking smallholder farmers to markets. Christine holds a PhD in Agricultural Economics from the University of Gottingen, Germany. She has previously worked with diverse international and national organizations including the International Potato Center, and the International Maize and Wheat Development Centre on improving nutrition of vulnerable populations through agriculture.
Executive Secretary, APROVAG
Mamadou is the Executive Secretary of APROVAG, the Association of Producers of the Gambia River Valley. He has over 18 years of experience in economic planning, organizational management, and accompanying disadvantaged rural communities in their socio-economic development initiatives. Mamadou is specialized in project management, rural entrepreneurship and business management. He previously worked with Plan International as a Community Development Advisor, Action Aid International Senegal as a Program Manager, and with the National Rural Infrastructure Program.
Microfinance Advisor, ICCO Cooperation
Khary is the Microfinance Advisor of the STARS Program for ICCO COOPERATION in Senegal. She is in charge of the coordination of the development and implementation of agrifinance products in partnership with Microfinance Institutions partners. Within the STARS program, Khary ensures monitoring performance of Microfinance partners and the implementation of capacity building.
Poultry Lead, Tanager Read Bio
Djibril is Tanager’s Poultry Lead for the SELEVER project in Burkina Faso. He works with local stakeholders and organizations to achieve systemic improvements in the rural poultry value chain. SELEVER’s commercial approach creates supporting systems that will sustain change across the local poultry sector. Djibril has worked in various integrated agriculture-livestock development projects and has played a role in shaping national livestock development policies as a leader in local livestock producing organizations.
'Partnerships and Outreach Manager, Tanager
Françoise has more than 10 years of experience in financial and contract management for development projects. As Partnerships and Outreach Manager for the SELEVER project in Burkina Faso, she is responsible for selection, contracting, and monitoring of contracts with implementing partners, including local NGOs, local government institutions, microfinance institutions, and private enterprises. Françoise also leads communication with local stakeholders and the media. She holds a degree in Sociology of Development and Education, and in Accounting.
President Emeritus and Founder, MSI
Larry is the Founder and President Emeritus of Management Systems International, a Tetra Tech company. He is an expert on large system change and directed the Implementing Policy Change Program advising governments in more than 40 countries. Larry has also written, lectured, and advised on systematic approaches for assessing scalability and accelerating scaling of innovation. He holds graduate degrees from Columbia University, Princeton University and the Cranfield Institute of Technology in the U
Vice President of Programs, Connexus Corporation
Todd is Vice President of Programs for Connexus. Previously, Todd was the Senior Technical Director for Resilience and Food Systems and Chief of Party for NCBA/CLUSA on Yaajeende, USAID Senegal’s flagship food security project in Senegal from 2010-2015. Todd holds an MA in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago and has over 23 years of experience working in community development in West Africa in Mali, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Togo, Benin, and Ghana.
Communications Coordinator (U.S. Office), CREATE!
Natalie is the U.S. Communications Coordinator at the Center for Renewable Energy and Appropriate Technology for the Environment (CREATE!). She implements CREATE!’s outreach and fundraising activities as well as writes and designs publications centered around CREATE!'s programs and progress. Natalie values storytelling as a catalyst for social change to create a sustainable and equitable future. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising from the School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Oregon.
Senior Project Associate, Connexus Corporation
Alby is a Senior Project Associate at Connexus, contributing to logistical and administrative support for current and potential projects and consultants. She worked for UCP Wheels for Humanity as a Development Associate and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Burkina Faso, where she worked as an Early Childhood Education Specialist and on agricultural projects. She holds a B.A. in International Development Studies and Sociology from UCLA and an MPA from Cal State, Northridge.
Ibrahima Serigne Diop
Access to Finance Specialist, USAID Naatal Mbay, RTI International
Ibrahima is an Access to Finance Specialist. He served as Naatal Mbay’s Access to Finance Specialist for the irrigated rice value chain in the Senegal River Valley. Subsequently, he was promoted to Financial Access Manager for all supported cereal value chains. He was instrumental in the development of the integrated financing and third-party holding mechanisms, and the development of agricultural insurance in four value chains: irrigated rice, rainfed rice, millet, and maize.
Field Coordinator, CREATE!
Amadou has worked at the Center for Renewable Energy and Appropriate Technology for the Environment (CREATE!) since 2014. As the field coordinator, Diouf is instrumental in training community members advanced agriculture techniques and renewable energy practices. He is passionate about CREATE!’s mission to assist rural Senegalese communities sustainably develop themselves. Diouf holds a certificate in horticulture from the Professional Horticulture Training Center in Camberene.
Deputy Head of Programs, CRS
Paul is CRS Senegal and The Gambia’s Deputy Head of Programming with two decades of experience working in rural development particularly in the fields in monitoring, evaluation, accountability and learning, and program management. Paul holds a Master's Degree in Sociology from Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar and a certificate in PMD pro (Lingos) and Project Management for Impact from the University of Wageningen.
Senegalese Nutrition-led Agricultural Specialist, Nutrition and Food Security Platform
Abdou is an environmental lawyer and founding executive secretary for the Water, Life and Environment (EVE) organization which manages the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement for the National Office of the Civil Society Platform in Senegal. He has extensive experience working on food security projects, including the Nutrition Enhancement Program funded by the World Bank. He holds a degree in Public Law and Political Science and is currently a Doctoral Research Student in Environmental Law.
Technical Director Agriculture and Livelihoods, CRS
Shaun is Director Agricultural Livelihoods with the Catholic Relief Services. He supports smallholder farmers in improving their productivity and market performance. He is interested in blended methods for capacity building, blended financing models, and the use of ICT to help scale new and sustainable business models that support inclusive market linkages.
International Food Cities Coordinator, RIKOLTO
Charlotte is the International Food Smart Cities Coordinator at Rikolto, an international NGO that builds bridges of trust and trade between farmer organisations, the food industry, governments, and research institutions around this one central question: ‘What will we eat tomorrow?. Charlotte holds a Master’s Degree in Environmental Sustainability from the University of Edinburgh, UK and has previously worked with Rikolto’s office in Vietnam as Programme Development Advisor.
Regional Technical Advisor for Financial Inclusion, CRS
Nadège currently serves as Regional Technical Advisor for Financial Inclusion and Business Services at Catholic Relief Services in West Africa. She provides technical assistance and capacity building to country program staff as well as leadership in the use of innovative financial services. She also provides support for the SILC programming. Prior to joining CRS, Nadège worked with Freedom from Hunger, managing the Saving for Change methodology across Africa.
Project Manager, Chemonics International
Ilisa is a Senior Manager at Chemonics with 19 years of experience working in international development and disaster recovery. Previously, she led the American Red Cross Tsunami Recovery Program’s partnership portfolio. Her diverse background has spanned market systems, value chains, food security, livelihoods, nutrition, WASH, MCHN, microfinance, disaster risk reduction, resilience, and inclusion. Ilisa holds a Masters Degree in International Development Management and Business Administration and is fluent in Spanish.
Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist, ICCO Cooperation
Dada is a Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Specialist within STARS program in West Africa. Since the beginning of his career, he has worked in market system development in the agriculture sector. Dada has an extensive background in agronomy, economy(?) and food security as an Agro Economist Engineer and holds a Master's Degree in Human Nutrition and Food Security.
Elhadji Abdou Gueye
Deputy Chief of Party, USAID Naatal Mbay, RTI International
Elhadji Abdou is an experienced Senegalese agricultural development expert. Prior to joining in the Feed the Future Senegal Economic Growth project in 2009, he worked for the Government of Senegal. Since 2015, he has served as Feed the Future Senegal Naatal Mbay Project’s Deputy Chief of Party. Elhadji Abdou was the technical lead and coordinated all activities including production, finance, and marketing in the irrigated rice, rainfed rice, millet, and maize value chains.
EO of SODEFITEX and Managing Director of BAMTAARE in Senegal
Goulé is the CEO of Sodefitex, and the Deputy Director General of BAMTAARE Services. He has 22 years of experience in rural development, including 11 years as Director. He coordinated the intervention of BAMTAARE in terms of technical assistance for various food safety projects in Senegal. As Director of BAMTAARE, he has contributed to the business strategy, advocacy coordination, and promotion of Aflasafe in Senegal.
Ana Yris Guzmán
Executive President, Nuestra Escuela
Ana is the Executive President of Nuestra Escuela, Inc., a nonprofit organization that practices an Alternative Education model that provides services to children and young people. She is also the elected President of the Board of Directors of the Single Voice Movement of Puerto Rico. She is also leading an agro-ecological project in Puerto Rico and is a regional trainer in the educational philosophies of Aflatoun, Aflateen, Aflatot and Aflateen Plus.
Director, Agriculture and Food Security, Chemonics International
Garron is an accomplished agriculture, economic growth, and private sector development professional with 18 years of experience in international development. He currently directs Chemonics’ Agriculture and Food Security Practice, capturing and adapting innovations and providing technical direction across Chemonics’ portfolio of 16 agricultural productivity, enabling environment, and market systems programs. He holds an M.B.A. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. in foreign affairs from the University of Virginia.
Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist, Tetra-Tech
Scheller is a Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning Specialist with Tetra Tech ARD in Burlington, Vermont. At Tetra Tech, Scheller supports 12 projects around the globe, which includes designing and leading learning activities, such as the work to track systemic change for women and youth with the Feed the Future Uganda Agricultural Inputs Activity. Previously, Scheller worked in Malawi and Egypt, and she earned a Master’s Degree in Intercultural Management from the SIT Graduate Institute.
National Coordinator, National Nutrition Coordination Committee
Abdoulaye is a public health and social development specialist with over 20 years of experience with maternal and child health and nutrition programming for governmental and non-governmental organizations in Senegal. He was part of the core team that initiated the nutrition policy reforms in 2001 including the creation of the National Nutrition Coordination Committee (CLM). He worked in field operations and monitoring until he took over as the National Coordinator in 2011 for CLM.
Market Systems Facilitation Specialist, Tetra-Tech
Robert is a Market Systems Development Consultant based in Uganda, East Africa. Over the last seven years, he has provided market systems support to projects in Mozambique, Kenya, South Africa, and Uganda. He is currently consulting for Tetra Tech ARD, and has previously consulted for USAID, RTI, Eco Ventures International, Action for Enterprise and various development agencies in Uganda. He loves jogging and participating in half marathons.
Country Director, Burkina Faso, Tanager
Romain provides leadership, oversight, and support to the SELEVER project to improve the nutritional status of women and children through an integrated strategy that increases household poultry production and improves access to poultry value chain services. SELEVER’s approach explicitly targets women in its economic strengthening work, and will impact more than 450,000 individuals with an estimated total income of $43 million generated over ten years.
Managing Director of ATTC, Chemonics International
Abdou has more than 15 years of experience and is currently the Managing Director of ATTC, an IITA initiative, where he heads the development of strategic partnerships between public and private sectors for the manufacturing and distribution of Aflsafe. He joined IITA from the Alliance for a Green revolution in Africa (AGRA) where he held various positions including Senior Program Officer and Technical lead Markets & Harvest Management focusing on Eastern and Western Africa.
Catherine Le Come
Rural Economic Development Expert, SNV
Catherine is a rural economic development expert with over 15 years of experience working throughout Central and West Africa. She is knowledgeable in project design and management, microfinance, and agriculture value chain development. In Mali and Burkina Faso, she initiated the innovative PPP using geo-satellite data to help pastoralists determine herd migration using their mobile phones. She holds an MBA in Economics and Development from the International Business and Management School of Lyon, France.
Deepti is Ignitia’s Chief Operating Officer and is responsible for designing and implementing organizational strategy and managing company-wide operations. She has over 20 years of international experience leading major operations, large teams and programs for respected INGO, governmental and blue-chip corporate organizations. Deepti holds an MBA and a Master's Degree in Gender from the London School of Economics and Political Sciences.
Food Security and Agriculture Specialist, RTI International
Karis is a Food Security and Agriculture Specialist at RTI International. She currently supports the design of private sector partnerships with agribusinesses on the USAID/Rwanda Private Sector Driven Agricultural Growth project (PSDAG) as the Feed the Future Kenya Crops and Dairy Market Systems Activity (KCDMS). In this capacity, she supported the projects in allocating $5M and $20M grants, respectively, to private sector partners with emphasis on inclusion of women, youth, and persons with disabilities.
Aminata Mbengue Ndiaye
Minister of Fisheries and Maritime Economy, Senegalese Government
Mme Aminata Mbengue Ndiaye is the current Minister of Fisheries and Maritime Economy for Senegal and Mayor of Louga. As an accomplished politician, she previously held positions as the Minister of Livestock, Minister of Women, Children and Families, and Minister of Social Development and National Solidarity. She is also the current President of the Women's Movement for the Socialist Party of Senegal.
Teacher, Nuestra Escuela
Samuel is the Gardening and Nutrition Coordinator for Nuestra Escuela and works to integrate nutrition education into the gardening class and managing the school's urban garden plots and rural farm. Certified: Arborist, Permaculture Designer, Intensive Agriculture and Community Leader with Vamos in his hometown Aguas Buenas. Samuel coordinates the Educational Committee of Boricuas Agroecology Farmers Association and also works as an agroecologist, educator, agronomist and farmer producing organic vegetables and herbs on his private farm.
Marketing Director at SODEFITEX, Chemonics International
Seydina has over 10 years of experience in sales, marketing, and international trade and finance in Senegal. He currently serves as the Marketing and Business Development Manager for SODEFITEX where he leads the design and implementation of the Aflasafe marketing strategy in Senegal, including outreach communications and media relations. He holds a BBA in Financial Banking and an M.S. in Marketing and International Commerce.
Omar Ndiaye Seck
Country Director, CREATE!
Omar is the Country Director at the Center for Renewable Energy and Appropriate Technology for the Environment (CREATE!). He oversees the successful implementation of CREATE!’s programs to help the rural villages in Senegal build a sustainable future for their families. Omar values working for CREATE! as it gives him the opportunity to work with and empower the most vulnerable populations in his country.
Hoefsloot Spatial Solutions
Alex is a data scientist in Dakar specializing in the use of geospatial technology to monitor climate and food security conditions in the Sahel. He currently works on the Sustainable Technology Adaptation for Malian Pastoralists (STAMP) programme, which operates a call center to provide livestock herders with regular information on natural resources and market conditions. From 2014-2019, he developed and managed Action Contre la Faim's Pastoral Early Warning System.
Azeez is the Director for Recovery and Resilience for CRS Nigeria. He previously served as the Chief of Party on the Feed the Future Nigeria Livelihoods Project. He has supported several projects at the field, management, and donor levels, working for APIN, Save the Children, Dangote Foundation, CARE International and CRS. Azeez holds a Medical Degree from the University of Ilorin and a Master’s Degree in Public Health from the University of Liverpool.
Senior Associate, Tetra-Tech
Jen is an Agronomist, and Adult Education and Training Specialist with 30 years of experience in the development of food security programs. She has designed extension strategies, communication tools, and training modules for the U.S. Government and many different organizations. During her time as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the DRC, she developed a passion for working with farming families, empowering women and engaging youth in rural development.
Executive Director, Sa-Dhan
Satish is the Executive Director of Sa-Dhan - the Association of Microfinance Institutions in India. He is a Board Director on the Microenterprise Development and Payments Bank and serves on Reserve Bank of India’s Financial Inclusion Advisory Committee. Previously, he was Chief General Manager for the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development. Satish holds an MBA in Finance from Osmania and a Ph.D. in Economics from Panjab University, Chandigarh.
Chief of Party, USAID Naatal Mbay, RTI International
Christophe has 20 years of experience in West Africa, fostering international development programs focused on agriculture and food security, value chain development, and economic growth. He served as the Chief of Party for Feed the Future Senegal’s Naatal Mbay project. He also led a sesame and fonio value chain project in Burkina Faso and higher education project in Liberia strengthening agricultural curriculum in Liberian universities.
Regional Technical Advisor for Nutrition and Community Health, CRS
Dr. Felicien works with Catholic Relief Services as the Regional Technical Advisor for Nutrition and Community Health in West Africa, supporting eight country programs in the region to ensure high-quality nutrition and health programming. He is a medical doctor with more than 20 years of extensive experience working in nutrition, health, food security and emergency programs in West Africa, Madagascar, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
CEO and Founder, myAgro
Anushka is the Founder and CEO of myAgro. She has worked in rural Africa since mid-2008, helping to increase food security and market access for small-scale farmers. Prior to starting myAgro, she developed key components of One Acre Fund’s core operation model, created management-training programs and traveled across Africa and South Asia. Anushka received her Bachelor’s Degree in Literature from University of California, Santa Cruz and her agricultural training from smallholder farmers in Bungoma, Kenya.
Chief of Party, Feed the Future Sengal Kawolor, NCBA/CLUSA
Karl is a seasoned professional with 25 years of experience working in international development with specific expertise in food security, agriculture, natural resource management, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) and economic growth programming. He has worked for NCBA CLUSA since February 2011 and has been a Chief of Party in Senegal for the last four years, currently for the Feed the Future Senegal Kawolor activity, and previously for the Feed the Future Senegal Yaajeende activity.
Co-founder and CEO, Le Lionceau
Siny is a Food Processing Engineer who graduated from renowned French school Montpellier SupAgro. After graduation, Siny worked at France’s leading infant nutrition company before creating her own business, Le Lionceau, which is a Senegal-based company specializing in baby food production. Le Lionceau provides natural, high-quality nutritional products for young children. Siny also conducts education and awareness campaigns on infant and maternal nutrition and on the importance of the first 1,000 days of life.
Abdoul Aziz Sarr
Head of CNCAS in charge of the Kaolack, Kaffrine and Fatick regions
El Hadji Abdoul Aziz SARR, graduated from the ISM in Management, with a master in Economics from UCAD and the Institut Technique de Banque of the Training Center for the Banking Profession (Centre de Formation de la Profession Bancaire). He has been an employee of the CNCAS since 2002 with 17 years of experience in agricultural financing. Abdoul Aziz currently serves as the Commercial Supervisor for central Senegal, covering 4 regions: Koalack, Diourbel, Fatick, and Kaffrine.
Sengalese Nutrition-led Agricultural Specialist
Pape has more than 40 years of experience working in international development, having led several high profile USAID projects in Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso, Ghana and Senegal. He previously served as the Chief of Party for USAID Yaajeende Nutrition led agriculture project in Senegal. He currently manages a seed farm and works as a Senior Advisor on development projects across Africa. He holds a DEA in Rural Sociology and an MA in Adult Education.
Senior Investment Manager, AV Ventures
Zubeiru has been working directly in investing debt and equity for SMEs in Ghana for over 11 years. Prior to joining AV Ventures, Zubeiru worked at Mustard Capital Partners, a private equity and venture capital fund management company in Ghana. Zubeiru holds a Master’s Degree in Philosophy and a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from the University of Ghana Business School and has completed Level 1 of the CFA Program
Operations Director, Connexus Corporation
Laura is an economist by training with 20 years of experience providing technical assistance and support to small businesses. She has experience working on youth and extending financial services to them in Africa. Prior to serving as Connexus’s Operations Director, Laura spent 10 years as an Economist with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Most recently, she was President of Shenandoah Brewing Company, a small, family-owned and operated microbrewery in Alexandria, VA.
Director, West Africa and Haiti, Chemonics International
Tracy is the Director of the ATTC project team within Chemonics. She has more than 20 years of experience in private sector development, trade and investment, business enabling environment, and program management. As a four-time chief of party, she has successfully led programs in Paraguay, Azerbaijan, Libya and the West Bank. She holds a B.A. in International Relations from George Washington University and an MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management.
Ignitia Founder and CEO Liisa had one goal in mind when she decided to found Ignitia, to develop a forecasting model that also worked in the tropics. She assembled a high-caliber technical team in 2010 to begin research and development of a highly accurate tropical weather forecasting model and eventually launched Ignitia’s first commercial product in 2015. Today, Liisa sets the strategic direction for Ignitia and oversees a team that extends across six countries.
CDP TIFI Project Director, WOCCU
Jean has 30+ years of experience in microfinance and international credit union development. He has developed financial cooperatives in countries such as Guatemala, Cambodia, Kenya, Mexico, Rwanda and Ukraine, and has introduced new financial products for farmers, youth, savings groups, and MSMEs. He has successfully implemented technical assistance programs that have expanded cooperative membership, strengthened organizational management, and improved service delivery. He also has significant experience selecting and implementing technology-based solutions in financial institutions.
Ministry of Digital Economy and Communication, Mali
Hamidou is a teacher-researcher by profession and began his career as a university lecturer. He is currently the National Director of Digital Economy at the Ministry of Digital Economy and Communication and previously served as a Technical Advisor the Ministry. He holds a PhD in Computer Science and a Master's Degree in Internet Strategy and Project Management in Business from Blaise Pascal University, and a DEA in Advanced Software Engineering from the University of Bamako.
Program Manager, Agriculture and Livelihoods, CRS
Martin, a Kenyan citizen and a graduate of the University of Nairobi, started his career with Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in 2008 and currently manages the CRS Kenya Agriculture and Livelihoods program. He led the implementation of Diversification for Nutrition and Enhanced Resilience (DiNER) fairs to support market-based recovery and productivity in disaster-affected communities, and has supported trainings for CRS, partners and government staff in Kenya, Lesotho, and Malawi on seed security systems interventions.