The MEDA Team - Operations
ADAM BRAMM, Associate Director
Role at MEDA ‒ As Associate Director, Adam is responsible for economic and financial analysis, value chain analysis, and developing and managing market-driven projects integrating women small scale producers, farmers or business owners into viable market systems. Adam currently manages the USAID’s Libya Women's Economic Empowerment (LWEE) project and the GAC-funded Greater Rural Opportunities for Women (GROW) project in Ghana. He also undertakes various consultancies as they occur.
Experience ‒ Adam has over ten years of experience working in the international development field, both in the US and abroad. For the past six years, Adam has worked at Development Alternative, Inc. (DAI) most recently as a Project Manager, for the Middle East, North Africa and Afghanistan Sector. His previous roles at DAI included Business Manager, Governance/Economic Growth Sector and Country Coordinator, Health Sector. Adam has also worked as a Proposal Manager at MSD and was an Economic Development Volunteer for the United States Peace Corps based in Bulgaria. Adam has a Master's degree in International Development from the Joseph Korbel School of International Studies and a Bachelor's degree in Political Science and Anthropology from Lawrence University.
Languages ‒ English
ADAM DIOUF, Field Project Manager, Tanzania
Role at MEDA - As a Field Project Manager, Adam manages MEDA's Strengthening Small Business Value Chains project in Tanzania.
Experience - Ms. Adam Diouf has over 20 years of professional experience in government, finance, banking, insurance and non-profit/poverty reduction organizations. Prior to MEDA, Adam was working as the Deputy Director for a Pan African organization, African Model Forests Network, in Yaounde, Cameroon. In this role she was responsible for organizational, financial, resource mobilization and social business network management. Adam has a Bachelor of Commerce from University of Tours, France, Bachelor of Economics from Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec and Master of Business Administration in Finance and International Management from HEC- School of Business, University of Montreal in Canada. After working in Europe, Africa and North America she is excited to bring her expertise to MEDA.
Languages ‒ Adam is fluent in English and French.
ANN GORDON, Technical Director, Market Solutions
Role at MEDA - Ann is responsible for building capacity, developing strategic approaches, documenting best practices, mentoring staff and overseeing market solutions support to all of MEDA’s programming. She collaborates to ensure that technical expertise in this area is shared across the organization. In addition to this, Ann is currently managing MEDA's Equitable Prosperity Through Private Sector Development (EPTPSD) project in Kenya.
Experience ‒ Ann joined MEDA in 2007 and brings an extensive background in rural development in the entrepreneurial, non-profit and government sectors including six years as Executive Director for the Advanced Agriculture Leadership Program in Guelph, Ontario. A Canadian Nuffield Agriculture Scholar, her 20 years of project management experience in various agri-food related value chains has taken her across North America, Europe, Afghanistan, China, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Tanzania and Sierra Leone.
ASHLEA WEBBER, Project Coordinator / Junior Consultant
Role at MEDA - Ashlea is a Project Coordinator/Junior Consultant for MEDA's Eastern, Southern and Central Africa (ESCA) projects. She provides support to the ESCA team in market research, business development, proposal development, drafting technical documents, developing marketing materials, backstopping on project activities, and delivering consulting services to MEDA's various international development projects in the ESCA region.
Experience - Ashlea holds a Master of Development Practice degree from the University of Waterloo and Bachelor of Social Sciences degrees in both Economics and International Economics and Development from the University of Ottawa. Ashlea's international work experience includes conducting her Master's research in Kisumu, Kenya for Millennium Cities Initiative as well as working as a Gender & HIV/AIDS Program Assistant for REFORD in Nkando, Malawi. Ashlea was also an International Development Management Fellow for the Aga Khan Foundation Canada where she was employed as a Monitoring and Evaluation Officer for the Coastal Rural Support Program in Pemba, Mozambique. Prior to these international experiences, Ashlea worked with the Canadian Red Cross Society where she began as a Program Assistant for Haiti Shelter and Reconstruction and later became a Program Associate for all of the Haiti Program Operations.
CARL ASUNCION, Program Manager, Monitoring and Impact Measurement
Role at MEDA - Carl is a Program Manager, Monitoring and Impact Measurement (MIM), on MEDA’s cross-cutting services team. He is responsible for designing, implementing, and supporting MIM systems for MEDA’s international programming. Carl is involved in developing strategies, delivering training, providing technical assistance, managing databases, developing data collection tools, conducting data analysis, and writing reports.
Experience - Carl has a Masters of Science in Food, Agricultural, and Resource Economics from the University of Guelph. This applied economics degree helped develop his quantitative data analysis skills and proficiency in software like R, Stata, and ArcGIS. He also has degrees in Biomedical Sciences and in International Economics and Development from the University of Ottawa. Previously, Carl worked on the Agriculture and Food Security program at the International Development Research Centre and managed an urban agriculture program in Cameroon. He also conducted holistic health research in Peru as a Public Engagement Intern.
Languages - Carl is fluent in English, Spanish and French.
CATHERINE SOBREVEGA, Country Project Manager, Ghana
Role at MEDA ‒ Catherine is an international development professional with over 25 years of NGO work experience as senior country and program manager, economic development and microfinance specialist. Currently she is managing MEDA’s 6-year, $20-million GAC-funded Greater Rural Opportunities for Women (GROW) project which is helping 20,000 women farmers improve the food security of their families in Northern Ghana. Catherine has worked on several USAID, USDA, GAC, DFID, EC, DANIDA, UN, CGIAR, IFAD and World Bank-funded projects. She has gained extensive experience in implementing economic development projects geared towards women’s economic empowerment in post-conflict situations. Previously she managed MEDA’s GAC-funded Through the Garden Gate project in Afghanistan. Prior to joining MEDA, Catherine worked for IRC in Bosnia and for CARE in the Philippines, Eritrea, and Afghanistan. Catherine has extensive experience in project proposal development, fund sourcing and donor reporting. In current and previous management roles, has continuously built successful close working relationships with various donors, including the World Bank, GAC and USAID, as well as local government officials and other public and private sector stakeholders.
Experience ‒ Catherine has a Masters in Management, majoring in Project Management from the Atlantic International University in Hawaii. She is a Certified Development Project Manager (CDPM®) from Project Management for Development Organizations (PM4DEV) in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Catherine also earned a Management and Industrial Engineer degree, graduating from the Mapua Institute of Technology in the Philippines.
Languages ‒ English
CATHERINE WALKER, Project Manager
Experience - Catherine first joined MEDA in 2013 to support on MEDA’s TechnoLinks project, focused on utilizing technology to improve access to financial services in Nicaragua. She moved into a Project Coordinator position with MEDA’s Private Sector Development department before joining the Agriculture team as a Project Manager. Prior to joining MEDA Catherine was the Director of Programming for the Rural Education Institute of Mexico, a non-profit based in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico focused on increasing access to education for rural children and youth. Catherine has also worked as an independent consultant in the microfinance sector with MEDA partner MiCredito. Catherine holds a Master's Degree in Political Science from the University of Toronto, a Post-Graduate Certificate in International Development from Humber College and a Bachelors Degree from McMaster University. She is currently working on a Certificate in Business Administration at McMaster University.
Languages - Catherine speaks fluent English and Spanish.
CAVELLE DOVE, Country Project Manager, Myanmar
Role at MEDA ‒ Since August 2015, Cavelle has been leading the start-up for the MEDA project “Women's Improved Market Access for Growth and Empowerment” in Myanmar, which will focus on improving the livelihoods of 25,000 rural women in two ethnic states in Myanmar.
Experience ‒ Cavelle has over 20 years’ experience in international and local community development. Cavelle has worked in Malawi as a social and community development worker in communities ravaged by AIDs and poverty. In Canada, Cavelle worked as a provincial Child Protection Worker and community development worker. She also co-chaired a funding initiative through the United Way providing small grants to local community organizations for grassroots initiatives. In Thailand, Cavelle worked with ECPAT, an organization-monitoring child trafficking and since 2004 has worked for the Embassy of Canada as manager of the Canada Fund, a small grants program in operation throughout 4 countries in Southeast Asia. In 2004 Cavelle coordinated relief and development initiatives to tsunami-affected regions of Thailand on behalf of the Canadian government. In addition to her work for the Canadian government, Cavelle has pioneered the start-up of a local NGO known as Imagine Thailand, a social action organization specializing in linking the university and marketplace to marginalized communities. In 2012 Cavelle moved to Myanmar where she co-founded a social enterprise known as Yangonbakehouse, which focuses on developing livelihood skills for women at the bottom of the pyramid. Cavelle holds a BSW from Memorial University in St. John’s, Newfoundland, and completed further graduate work at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and Asia Pacific Theological Seminary in Baguio, Philippines. She is a candidate for a Masters in Human Rights and Peace Studies at Mahidol University in Thailand.
Languages ‒ English and Thai
CHELSIE HUNT, Program Manager, Monitoring and Impact Measurement
Role at MEDA - As a program manager in monitoring and impact assessment, Chelsie is involved in the design, implementation and support of all MIM systems for MEDA’s international programming on investment. She is also responsible for developing strategies, delivering training, providing technical assistance, managing databases, developing data collection tools, conducting data analysis using statistical software and writing reports.
Experience - Chelsie is a graduate from the Masters of Environmental Studies program, specializing in Finance from the University of Waterloo. She previously earned a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Western Ontario and a Bachelor of Arts, Honors Business Administration from Richard Ivey School of Business in London, Ontario. She worked for several years as a Quantitative Consultant at S & P Capital IQ based in New York and most recently as an Impact Investment Consultant at AR3C Invest. She has in-depth knowledge of impact investing and socially responsible investing as well as, quantitative metrics used for analysis and reporting.
Languages - Chelsie speaks English and is conversational in French.
CLARA YOON, Project Manager
Role at MEDA - In her current role as Project Manager, Clara manages an applied research project that will assess the potential of non-traditional financial services to enable large scale adoption of agricultural innovations among men and women smallholder farmers in South Asia, Latin America and East Africa. The project lessons will inform policymaking and programing on agricultural development.
Experience - Clara holds a MA in Global Governance from the University of Waterloo and BA in Global Studies from Wilfrid Laurier University. Prior to joining MEDA in Canada, Clara was a MEDA intern in Ethiopia. She worked on the Ethiopians Fighting Against Child Exploitation project, she collected client success stories and provided overall program support to project staff. After her return to Canada, Clara worked on a consultancy contract with MEDA providing support to two projects in Ethiopia. Clara has prior experience in South Korea, working with a human rights non-governmental organization.
Languages - Clara is fluent in English and proficient in Korean.
DANIEL MALENFANT, Field Project Manager, Nicaragua
Experience – Daniel has over 25 years’ experience in international development, specifically in the capacity of project management and technical advisory for long-term, multi-million dollar projects in Central and Latin America and Africa. He holds a Bachelor of Science, specializing in Social Communications from Université Laval and a Masters in Sociology from University of Montreal in Quebec.
Languages ‒ Daniel is fluent in English, French and Spanish.
DAVID EAGLE, Associate Director
Experience ‒ Most recently, David led the MEDA Health project that aims to reduce Vitamin A deficiency in Northern Tanzania through the fortification of unrefined sunflower oil with Vitamin A. David has also worked as a consultant on MEDA’s agriculture project that is facilitating new market-based supply chains for certified cassava seed systems in Tanzania. Prior to joining MEDA, David spent 14 years in a private sector business focused on technology and financial services industries in the roles of strategic planning, marketing, implementation consulting and project management. David holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Queen’s University, a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of British Columbia and a Masters in Peace & Conflict Studies from Conrad Grebel University College at the University of Waterloo.
DEVON KRAINER, Program Manager, Monitoring and Evaluation
FARAH CHANDANI, Senior Project Manager
Role at MEDA ‒ Farah is responsible for promoting improved livelihoods, increased employment and entrepreneurship opportunities through value chain development, and better financial inclusion for young women and men around the world, including research and analysis on these topics. She currently manages the Global Affairs Canada funded Jordan Valley Links project that focuses on women and youth entrepreneurs in food processing, tourism and clean technology sectors. She also manages the financial inclusion component of the Canadian YouLead Project in Nigeria that is led by CUSO.
Experience ‒ Farah has over 15 years' experience as an International Development professional. Her career began as an Evaluation Officer for Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and since then, has worked as an Analyst and Project Officer for the Regional Africa Program, the Pakistan Program, the China Program and most recently Partnership Programming. Farah earned her Masters of Science specializing in Rural Planning and International Development at the University of Guelph and her B.Sc specializing in Psychology at Queen's University. Her specialties include: women's economic empowerment and gender equality programming; youth programming; and results-based management training, monitoring and evaluation.
Languages ‒ English, French (intermediate), Urdu/Hindi (basic) and Swahili (basic)
FIONA MACKENZIE, Senior Project Manager
Role at MEDA ‒ As a Senior Project Manager, Fiona is responsible for managing long-term projects and partnerships within MEDA's Eastern, Southern, and Central Africa Programs. This includes conducting new business development, and delivering value chain and market analysis consulting services. Fiona’s work is currently focused on long-term contracts in Ethiopia, Tanzania and Kenya with Canadian and American partners and donors. Her current portfolio of projects work with entrepreneurs, business owners, and youth to build skills and link producers to sustainable service providers and markets across various sectors.
Experience ‒ Fiona brings substantial experience to MEDA working with value chains in West and East Africa. Prior to joining MEDA, Fiona consulted to MEDA programming in Ethiopia – particularly in new business development and on projects working within the handwoven textile sector. Prior to MEDA, Fiona spent three years working in the private and non-profit sectors in Ghana. Fiona obtained a BBA with a double major in Finance and Management from Mount Saint Vincent University, and she is currently working on her MA in International Development from the Saint Mary's University. Fiona’s MA research focuses on the effects of non-renewable resource management on social and economic growth.
Languages ‒ Fiona is fluent in English, and has a proficient level of French and Spanish.
GOODLUCK MOSHA, Field Project Manager
INTISSAR RAJABANY, Country Project Manager, Libya
Role at MEDA ‒ Intissar joined MEDA in April 2013. As leader of the project team Intissar is responsible for managing the implementation of MEDA's USAID-funded Libya Women's Economic Empowerment project, which aims to strengthen women owned SMEs through training, support and a matching grants fund.
Experience ‒ Prior to working with MEDA Intissar worked with the British Council and other local and international NGOs on programs that support advocacy and awareness raising in the MENA region. Due to the unique environment in Libya prior to the 2011 uprising Intissar brings with her extensive experience working in international oil and gas companies. She is currently actively involved in community service initiatives in Libya and her main interests are human rights and women empowerment in governance. She has provided assistance to the Libyan interim government with regards to establishing Human Resources best practices in the public sector and centers for civilian reintegration. In addition to being an ardent linguist, Intissar ran her own consultancy business specializing in the oil and gas sector, security and politics in Libya and is a founding member and vice president of the Women in Business Committee – Tripoli.
Languages ‒ Arabic, English and French
IRENE BURNS, Senior Director, West Africa/MENA Programs
Irene has an extensive background in international development, including an MBA in International Business. She has 20 years of experience managing and implementing projects in small and medium-sized (SME) enterprise development, value chain competitiveness, capacity building, business enabling environment, and regional trade and investment in developing and transition countries for USAID. She has worked as a Senior Development Specialist in private sector development and economic growth.
Her extensive experience managing USAID programs includes positions as Chief of Party (COP), Acting Chief of Party, Deputy Chief of Party (DCOP), and Team Leader for over 7 years with DAI. She brings a deep understanding of USAID project management rules and regulations, policies and procedures, including financial management and budgeting, monitoring and evaluation, knowledge management, reporting, staff management, operations and management of multiple field offices. Most recently, she was a Director for DAI in Washington.
JANICE BOTHELLO, Country Project Director, Jordan
Role at MEDA ‒ Janice joined MEDA in April 2016 as the Country Project Director for Jordan. She is responsible for managing the implementation of MEDA's GAC-funded Jordan Valley Links project, which works to support women and youth in the Jordan Valley to identify new livelihood opportunities, build their businesses and connect to higher-value markets.
Experience ‒ Prior to working with MEDA, Janice was the Associate Director of Programs with Aga Khan Foundation Mozambique, overseeing several rural development initiatives. She was also a Program Manager with Aga Khan Foundation Canada managing projects in Afghanistan, Egypt and Mozambique. Prior to a career in development, she worked in the private sector in marketing and publishing. Janice holds a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from the Ivey School of Business and a Master of Science in Population and Development from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Languages – English, French (intermediate), Portuguese (intermediate)
JENNIFER DENOMY, Technical Director, Vulnerable Populations
Role at MEDA ‒ Jennifer is responsible for building capacity, developing strategic approaches, documenting best practices, mentoring staff and overseeing how vulnerable populations are included throughout MEDA’s programming. She collaborates to ensure that technical expertise in this area is shared across the organization.
Experience ‒ Jennifer has worked in international development and education for over twenty years. She has managed projects in Egypt, Morocco, Afghanistan, Uganda, Sri Lanka, El Salvador and Mongolia, focusing on financial inclusion, skills training and workplace improvement for young people. She has supported financial institutions on product development, client analysis and risk management. From 2009 to 2012, she was facilitator of the SEEP Network’s Youth Financial Services Practitioner Learning Program, a three year action research project that brought together four microfinance organizations to explore appropriate and accessible financial services for young people. Prior to joining MEDA, she worked as the pedagogical manager of a teacher training centre in Germany and a curriculum designer for BRAC's Non-formal Primary Education Program in Bangladesh. Jennifer holds an M.Ed. in International Development and Education from the University of Toronto and an M.A. from McGill University in Montreal.
Languages ‒ English, German and French (intermediate)
JENNIFER FERRERI, Senior Project Manager
Role at MEDA - At MEDA, Jennifer is responsible for managing long-term projects and providing technical assistance to consultancies with a specific focus on expanding access to finance, savings mobilization and digital financial services.
Experience - Jennifer has over 12 years of experience in the financial services industry, including investment banking, financial tool development and training, digital financial services and microfinance. Before joining MEDA full-time, she spent a year in Zambia working with MEDA's mobile financial services partner, Zoona, consulting on branchless banking agent network development and training, e-voucher implementation for agriculture and other product development. Jennifer brings experience working with microfinance associations and institutions, designing trainings to build network capacity, track financial indicators and develop business strategy and planning. During her tenure at MEDA she has managed projects focused on linking savings groups to financial institutions, capacity building at microfinance institutions, using electronically delivered subsidies for the delivery of health goods, designing mobile money pilots for agricultural value chains. Jennifer obtained a BS from Smith College in International Relations/Government and an MA in International Development from the George Washington University, with a focus in post-conflict reconstruction.
Languages - Jennifer is fluent in English and proficient in Spanish; she is learning French.
JENNIFER KING, Senior Project Manager
Role at MEDA ‒ As Senior Project Manager, Jennifer is responsible for developing and managing market-driven projects integrating women small scale producers, farmers or business owners into viable market systems. Jennifer currently manages one of MEDA’s newest women’s projects in Burma (Myanmar).
Experience ‒ Jennifer brings to her role experience in community and economic development, marketing and communications, and market development in North America and Sri Lanka. Prior to joining MEDA, Jennifer was the founding Executive Director of Social Venture Partners (SVP) in Waterloo Region, a grant making foundation and capacity development organization. Prior to SVP, Jennifer helped to establish Capacity Waterloo Region (now Capacity Canada) and later managed the organization’s social ventures and storytelling initiatives. Earlier, she worked in Sri Lanka building the organizational capacity of the Rural Enterprise Network, a social enterprise spin-off of Practical Action providing training and market linkages to micro-scale rural producers, most of whom are women, as well as those affected by the Asian tsunami. Her past marketing work has helped non-profits and economic development organizations achieve greater impact by driving forward innovative projects and capturing stories of social change. Jennifer holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Waterloo, and an Entrepreneurship & Small Business Management diploma from George Brown College.
Languages ‒ English and learning Spanish
JILLIAN BAKER, Senior Project Manager, Monitoring and Impact Measurement
Role at MEDA - Jillian Baker is a development practitioner with eight years of experience in capacity building, project management, and monitoring and evaluation. She currently provides technical support to projects and consultancies on MIM systems and environmental sustainability. Focusing on participatory communication techniques, she has experience in training, developing curriculum, and using both quantitative and qualitative methods to measure and communicate impact.
Experience - Jillian holds a MA in International Communications and Development from City University London and a BA in English Language and Literature. She has worked in Honduras, Ghana, Nicaragua, Mexico, Morocco, Uganda, the US, the UK, Ukraine and Zambia.
Languages - English and Spanish
KAMRAN ABDULLAYEV, Technical Director, Financial Services
Role at MEDA - Kamran Abdullayev, of Waterloo, Canada is a Technical Director and leads the organizational efforts to advance and maintain its excellence in inclusive financial services. Kamran joined MEDA in 2010 as a Senior Consultant / Project Manager specializing in the areas of rural, agriculture, SME and value chain financing. Kamran has about 20 years of experience in enterprise development, microfinance, and value chains development that includes a direct provision of business development services to small enterprises, market research, design, management and technical backstopping to economic development projects.
Within MEDA, Kamran is responsible for managing technical support to the MEDA programming and consultancy projects for partner financial institutions and SME banks in Eastern Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East. His roles include project management of multidisciplinary teams of international and local consultants, as well as direct technical assistance provision to partner financial institutions in the areas of institutional diagnostics and due diligence, product development, credit risk management, agriculture value chain finance, training, operational audits, delinquency management and institutional restructuring. In these roles, he has successfully supported and managed projects that have resulted in substantial increases in operational outreach and loan capital investments for MEDA’s partner financial institutions, particularly in agriculture SME and farmers lending in Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Ghana, Ukraine and Nigeria. Kamran also designed and successfully managed a credit guarantee facility with one of Ethiopia's commercial banks involved in rural agro processing lending.
Experience - Prior to joining MEDA in 2010, Kamran oversaw microfinance operations as COO of FINCA International in Azerbaijan. While at Mercy Corps Azerbaijan he also contributed to strategy design and implementation for a variety of programs in the Caucasus, Central Asia, Africa and South Asia, and gained experience in the needs of refugees and displaced persons. Kamran holds a Master's Degree in Development Economics from the University of East Anglia (UK) and an Engineering-Economics Degree from the Azerbaijan Civil Engineering University. He is a member of the UK Development Studies Association.
Languages - Kamran is fluent in English, Russian, and Azerbaijan. He is also learning Spanish.
KATIE TURNER, Technical Director, Investment
Experience ‒ Katie has over 10 years of experience supporting private sector led development projects with a focus on SME investment and agribusiness development . She has strong field experience coupled with extensive knowledge of gender, technology adoption and microfinance as they apply to rural development. Katie holds an Honours BA in Economics from Wilfrid Laurier University and a Post Graduate Degree in International Development. She has worked in Armenia, Ecuador, Ghana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Morocco, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Peru, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Ukraine and Vietnam.
Languages ‒ Katie is fluent in English and Spanish. She is learning French.
LARISSA SCHNEIDER, Project Coordinator / Junior Consultant
Role at MEDA ‒ Larissa assists the department with market research, business development, proposal development, drafting and editing technical documents, developing marketing materials, backstopping on project activities, and delivering consulting services.
Experience ‒ Prior to joining MEDA, Larissa worked as a Market Research Advisor for the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) based in Tamale, Ghana. Her international work experience also includes working as a Vocational and Skills Development Manager for WomenFirst in Jinja, Uganda. Prior to these overseas placements Larissa completed an internship with Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women (CRIAW) in Ottawa, Ontario and she was a Junior Research Fellow at the Centre for International Governance and Innovation (CIGI) in Waterloo, Ontario. Larissa earned her B.A. Honors in International Development from University of Guelph in Guelph; M.A in Global Governance from The Balsillie School of International Affairs at University of Waterloo and a Post Graduate Certificate in Global Business Management from Conestoga College.
Languages ‒ English
LEAH KATERBERG, Director, Cross-Cutting Services
Role at MEDA - As the director of Cross Cutting Services, Leah ensures the overall success and effective support to MEDA on cross cutting issues: Monitoring & Impact Measurement, Gender, Climate Change and Environment. She leads the team in planning and implementing leading edge support services with a focus on the introduction of enhanced/new approaches and the utilization of an appropriate mix of methodologies.
Experience - Leah is a former MEDA employee who worked on the ISS team from 2009 to 2012 as a Program Manager in Evaluation and Environmental Assessment. In 2012, Leah and her family relocated to Tanzania where she managed a large contract farming value chain project for TechnoServe serving close to half a million cotton farmers in Tanzania’s western cotton growing region. Leah returned to Canada at the end of 2013, where she established a successful consulting practice serving a variety of private companies and development organizations, including MEDA.
Languages - Leah speaks English, French and Swahili
LILIANA CAMACHO, Senior Program Manager, Environment and Climate Change
MAJID MIRZA, Senior Project Manager
Role at MEDA – Majid Mirza has been working in development and impact investing since he completed his Masters from the University of Waterloo in 2009. As Senior Project Manager, Global Programs, Majid’s primary responsibility has been leading MEDA’s INFRONT (Impact Investing in Frontier Markets) project since August 2016. Majid is also a member of the MEDA’s Investment Technical Team and represents MEDA in CAFIID (Canadian Forum for Impact Investing and Development).
Experience – Majid has a Bachelors in Arts & Business from the University of Waterloo along with a Master in Business Entrepreneurship & Technology. Since 2009 Majid has been working with various impact investing and international development organizations including Acumen, Engro Foundation and The Aman Foundation. Through these assignments he has been exposed to various value chains related within the economic empowerment mandate including Agriculture, SME Development and Vocational Training. Through his career he has also had a chance to work closely with various donor agencies including USAID, DFID, GIZ, World Bank and the Japan Government.
Languages - Majid is fluent in English and Urdu, and has basic Mandarin and Arabic skills.
MANSUR MEHDI, Senior Project Manager
Experience - By profession, Mansur is a Chartered Accountant, however, his professional experience ranges beyond Assurance,Advisory, Accounting and Finance. In the last 8 years, he opted to make Development Finance his career. In the recent past, Mansur provided management services at a major development finance APEX institution where he was the Director of Finance and Development. Earlier, he directed transition activities at the same APEX which resulted in the consolidation of six MicroFinance Institutions (MFIs), and the establishment of a new institution with a focus on serving women MSMEs. Before, Mansur was the Group Head/CFO of a leading Microfinance Bank for over 5 years. Mansur has experience at various governance levels, including the Board of Directors, Executive Committee and Asset/Liability Committee, Audit/Risk Committee and Credit Committee.
Languages - Mansur is fluent in English and Urdu, and has intermediate Dari and Hindi skills.
MIKE SARCO, Field Project Manager, Kenya
Role at MEDA ‒ Mike manages the Equitable Prosperity Through Private Sector Development project in Kenya.
Experience ‒ Mike has over 35 years of work experience in rural development entrepreneurial, NGO, Government and Private Sector positions. For fifteen years he has performed various project advisory roles in Uganda, Sudan, South Sudan, Tanzania, Zambia, Liberia and DRC. In post-conflict economies he brought various groups together to address health service delivery issues in Liberia and DRC by working with Private Sector Mining Concerns, the government Ministry of Health and International Donors. These led to Primary and Secondary Health care provision in area's previously not served by either for many years. Mike has worked with small holders in Uganda and Mexico to increase sales and prepare them for export markets. In Zambia he worked with groups using Aleo Vera extracts for medicinal purposes and the residue from extract production to decrease flock loss in commercially grown poultry and Cattle. In 1989 he started a Fresh Herbs production facility that grew from a start-up to sales of USD 2.4 million annually by 1996, and currently has sales over 25 million dollars annually. He brings a practical and innovative approach to assisting the rural poor find profitable solutions to difficult problems in challenging environments. He holds a BA from Eastern Mennonite University and an MBA from James Madison University. Prior to his position as Field Project Manager in Kenya, Mike was a Senior Project with MEDA’s Business of Health department.
NADIRA SALEH, Project Manager
Experience - Nadira has significant experience in academic research, specifically in nutrition. Nadira has worked for African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) in Nairobi, Kenya, the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) in Ottawa and has consulted for Action Against Hunger (Paris), Catholic Relief Services and Tufts University (Burkina Faso). Nadira earned her Masters of Science specializing in International Food Policy and Economics at Tufts University in Boston and her B.Sc in Health Sciences at McMaster University.
Languages - Nadira speaks fluent English and French as well as basic understanding of Hindi, Urdu and Swahili.
NATHALIE LUNDY, Project Coordinator, Proposal Support
NEIL DENISON, Director, Knowledge Management and IT
NICK RAMSING, Associate Director
Experience ‒ Nick worked as an economic development advisor to Food for the Hungry in East Africa prior to his first stint with MEDA, when he performed as a credit systems specialist in Tanzania and later as a senior microfinance consultant. After 10 years as a senior project manager in information technology industry and a management consultant to U.S. federal civilian agencies, Nick has returned to MEDA to strengthen PSD-Ag’s ICT applications and extend its value chain development methodology. Nick holds degrees in Economics from University of California, Davis and Boston University. He maintains Project Management Professional certification from PMI.
NICKI POST, Senior Project Manager
Role at MEDA ‒ Nicki Post is MEDA’s Senior Consultant/Project Manager for their Youth Economic Opportunities team. Nicki oversees and provides technical support to several long term projects and consultancies that promote global youth financial inclusion and skill development. Nicki currently manages Jordan USAID LENS project with MEDA supporting the access to finance for emerging MSEs (Micro, Small Entrepreneurs). She is also responsible for exploring new opportunities for the Youth Team and manages local and international donor relations.
Experience ‒ Nicki has ten years of international development experience focusing on financial product development, savings group methodologies, financial literacy, training and project management. At MEDA, Nicki managed YouthInvest, a training and technical assistance program delivering innovative financial and non-financial services for youth in Morocco and Egypt and the youth and gender component of MEDA’s Themar project in Yemen. Nicki has also managed and provided technical support to UNCDF's YouthStart initiative in Sub-Saharan Africa and provided technical expertise through consultancies on areas varying from financial capabilities curriculum development to savings groups. Prior to MEDA, Nicki worked with Freedom from Hunger as a Technical Advisor, designing, developing and implementing financial education for MFIs and NGOs throughout West Africa and parts of Southeast Asia. Nicki specialized on informal adult and youth savings groups, savings product development and utilizing mobile phones as alternate education delivery mechanisms. Nicki's work with the International Monetary Fund and as a United States Peace Corps volunteer in Cameroon award her an array of training and technical assistance experiences as well as overseas experience. She holds an M.S. from New York University in International Economics and Development and a B.A. from the University of Denver in International Studies.
Languages ‒ English and French
RACHEL HESS, Senior Project Manager
Role at MEDA - As a Senior Consultant/Project Manager Rachel is responsible for market systems analysis and gender analysis which provide the foundation for design and implementation of market-based interventions to increase economic opportunities for women. Rachel also consults with other organizations engaged in international economic development.
Experience - Rachel has extensive experience with programs designed to reduce poverty through inclusive economic development, both internationally and in North America. With MEDA she has managed programs focused on assisting women to improve production and business skills to more effectively participate in viable market systems. Her specialities include market systems analysis to identify opportunities for greater inclusion of women and other marginalized groups and monitoring of market-based interventions. She has conducted project evaluation, market analysis and project design assignments in a range of international settings and has lived in Egypt, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Tanzania. She has also directed a Women’s Business Center committed to assisting women to start and grow businesses in south central Pennsylvania. Rachel has a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from the University of Virginia.
Language - English
SAMUEL SEDDOH, Field Project Manager, Ghana
Role at MEDA ‒ Sam is the Field Project Manager of the Farmers’ Economic Advancement Through Seedlings (FEATS) project in Ghana focused on cocoa, cashew, rubber and shea.
Experience ‒ Sam has approximately 15 years of experience in rural development, consulting and business development within the private sector. Over this period he has been engaged in project and sales management, new business development, B2B networking, commodity sourcing, distribution and trading, various vlaue chain and market development and consulting assignments. Sam has worked for organizations and projects funded by The World Bank, CEIBS, USAID, GAFCO, TechnoServe, ACDI VOCA, Chemonics International, DFID, Coffey International, Grow Africa (WEF and AU partnership), Prorustica, GiZ, Olam International and Grameen Foundation. He has a MBA from China Europe International Business School, Shanghai-China and B.Sc. Agriculture degree from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi-Ghana. Sam recently led MEDA's field team in Ghana to implement the Networks e-Coupon pilot and e-Enhanced Social Marketing Initiative (ESMI) projects which aimed at facilitating the distribution and sale of Long Lasting Insecticidal Treated Bed-Nets (LLINs) using an innovative SMS based mobile platform.
Languages ‒ Sam is fluent in English, Ewe, and Twi as well as basic Ga and French.
SARA M. SEAVEY, Senior Program Manager, Cross-Cutting Services
Sara M. Seavey is a Senior Program Manager for Gender in MEDA’s Cross-Cutting Services team and oversees the implementation of gender equality programming, ensuring technical quality assurance, and building internal capacity of staff and partners.
In this role, she develops and manages MEDA's gender equality strategies, developing tools and resources for MEDA’s gender programming. She currently supports projects in Tanzania, Kenya, Myanmar, Jordon, and Ghana. She also supports MEDA’s Vulnerable Populations working group, which focuses on how to increase women and youth in economic development programs. Prior to joining MEDA, Sara managed complex projects, including mobile data for decision making and digital financial inclusion with USAID’s Global Development Lab, and workforce development in Morocco. She has also worked with women entrepreneurs in Cape Town, South Africa and supported international exchange programs between the U.S. and Asia. Sara holds a M.A. in Social Enterprise from American University and a B.A. in International Development from Connecticut College.
SHAHNEWAZ (RONTEE) KARIM, Senior Project Manager, Global Programs
Rontee has over 12 years of experience in project management and private sector development with specialization in financial services and alternative investments. Rontee was a strong contributor to the groundbreaking Katalyst program in Bangladesh and most recently was based in Indonesia as the Head of Portfolio- Prisma for a strategy consulting organization that was developing agricultural sectors for smallholder farmers.
He attended the University of Dhaka in Bangladesh where he earned a BBA (Finance, Marketing) and a MBA (Finance). Additionally, he attended the Executive Leadership program offered at Rotman School of Management at University of Toronto and last year he graduated with a Master of Finance from the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario.
SHAKIR MACHHIWALA, Senior Project Manager
Experience ‒ Shakir has extensive international experience working in various industries across the private sector (incl. RBC, Deloitte, BlackBerry, Sustainalytics) as well as the public and non-profit sectors, in both staff and consulting roles. His areas of experience and expertise include Sustainable Business, Supply Chain and Market Development as well as Multi-Stakeholder Engagement and Partnerships. His skills encompass strategic, program, and project management as well as opportunity, risk, and results-based performance management, including monitoring & evaluation, reporting and continuous improvement. Shakir has lived and worked in India for 33 years and his travels have taken him to more than 35 countries around the world spanning Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe, North America, Latin America and the Caribbean. He thus has a good first-hand understanding of various international development issues, ground realities, environments and cultures, and the skills in navigating them effectively. Shakir holds an MBA in International Business and Sustainability as well as a Graduate Diploma in Business and the Environment from the Schulich School of Business at York University, Toronto, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Mumbai, India.
Languages ‒ Shakir is fluent in English and Hindi and has a basic understanding of Marathi, Gujarati and Urdu.
STEPHEN MAGIGE, Field Project Manager, Tanzania
Role at MEDA ‒ As a Field Project Manager, Stephen’s responsibilities is to direct the project to make sure that the overall objectives of the project is realised.
Experience ‒ Stephen has over 15 years’ experience in managing agriculture and livelihood projects, started his carrier in Microfinance as a District Microfinance Supervisors with the Rural Financial Services Programme (RFSP), Microfinance Advisor with the Netherlands Development Organisation (SNV), National Technical Advisor with the Belgium Technical Corporation (BTC) , Country Programme Manager with Catholic Relief Services(CRS)-Great Lakes Cassava Initiatives Project and currently with MEDA-Cassava Project. Stephen has accumulated vast experience in in project formulations, management, implementation, Monitoring and Evaluations, agriculture value chain assessment and upgrading interventions for various sub sectors, offering a wide range of Business Development Services to different segment of the chain. Stephen has a Bachelor in Agriculture General from Sokoine University of Agriculture and a Master in Business Administration from the University of Dar Es Salaam.
THOMAS McCORMACK, Country Project Manager, Ethiopia
YANYAN GAI, Project Manager
Role at MEDA ‒ Yanyan joined MEDA in July 2014. Currently as a project manager, Yanyan works extensively on investment grant portfolio management, data analytics and impact evaluation, as well as supply chain analysis. Yanyan is working on Ukraine Horticulture Business Development Project and Mountain Lion Agriculture in Sierra Leone.
Experience ‒ Before MEDA, Yanyan worked as a PR & Marketing executive with Ogilvy Public Relations, Microsoft and Embassy of Ireland. She holds master degree in Financial and Economic Policy & International Development from Cornell University and bachelor degree in Sociology from Renmin University of China.
Language – Chinese (Mandarin)
YASIR DILDAR, Associate Director, Monitoring and Impact Measurement
Role at MEDA - Yasir is responsible for managing the day to day operations of MEDA’s Monitoring and Impact Measurement services across all programs.
Experience - Yasir is an experienced researcher and performance measurement specialist with a diverse skill set in monitoring and impact measurement, gender programming, participatory research and analysis. He has produced more than thirty technical research reports and has developed the evaluation systems for a wide range of MEDA programs. He holds Master degrees in Development Studies and Sociology.
Languages - Fluent in English, Urdu, Hindi and Punjabi