- Abigail StevensAbigail StevensAbigail is a young and fierce female activist. She is a mobilizer, campaigner, mentor and advocate. She is a social worker who went to Njala University and studied Environmental & Development Studies. As a recent graduate, she invested her time to do volunteer work at the Centre for Coordination of Youth Activities (CCYA). Abigail then gained a 10-year professional experience as a Programme Support Staff and later as Gender Officer with the CCYA. She served as a Project & Programme Officer for various initiatives relating to livelihood security, human rights and sexual reproductive health issues. Most recently, she was promoted as the Executive Director of CCYA. Abigail believes in partnership and strong collaborations in achieving common goals.
- Catherine RodgersCatherine Rodgers
Catherine is a passionate African feminist who works with young people across the continent to support their leadership in creating just, equitable and sustainable societies. As the Hub Director for Restless Development Uganda, she leads on Board management, strategic planning, fundraising and finance, legal and risk management as well as overseeing the Advocacy and Programmes. Previously, Catherine worked for ActionAid International as the Youth Engagement Advisor, supporting 50 countries across Africa, Asia, Americas and Europe. Catherine gave a strategic advisory to ActionAid International’s youth campaigning network, Activista, supporting countries to build their national youth networks and to support on programming and policy.
- Charles Kojo VanDyckCharles Kojo VanDyck
Charles spent his formative years living in Botswana, Zimbabwe, Nigeria and Ghana. These experiences have shaped his resolve to promote a more positive narrative on the continent. Charles has expertise in strengthening civic action, enabling social innovation, civic engagement and human rights. He is the Capacity Building Advisor of the West Africa-based Program of the Mandela Washington Fellowship (MWF). He is the Founding Board Chair of Innovation for Change-Hub Afrique and a founding member of the International Consortium on Closing Civic Space (iCon); an initiative of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington DC. Charles currently serves as the Head of the Capacity Development Unit at the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI).
- Cidia ChissunguCidia ChissunguCidia was one of the earliest leaders of Activista Mozambique; thanks to her diligent work, Cidia mobilised activists in Maputo, Marracuene, Manhiça and other provinces, making Activista the largest youth advocacy network in Mozambique. Cídia launched the Black Civilization in August 2018; a movement pledging to promote solidarity among African people through concrete actions. She is a motivational speaks and runs professional development workshops for young university students.
- David ShamalaDavid Shamala
David is a veteran of creating and managing digital content to build relationships for organizations and individuals. He focuses his work and efforts to fight for causes relating to gender-based violence, environmental sustainability, agriculture and entrepreneurship. David serves as the Chief Content Officer of Africa Youths Committee. David is an unreservedly passionate influencer and motivational speaker. He is also an undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Commerce at Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology, Kenya.
- Duduzile NyirongoDuduzile NyirongoDudu is the Co-founder and trustee of CitizensZW; a civic organization which promotes civic participation. She advocates for the Citizens Manifesto; a team that works to build a non-partisan national convergence platform for Zimbabwean citizens. Dudu is a chartered accountant, she worked with Ernst & Young and amassed numerous entrepreneurship awards. Dudu is currently pursuing a Masters in Business Administration at the Africa Leadership University School of Business.
- Gideon AdeyeniGideon Adeyeni
Gideon Adeyeni is a Nigerian-born community mobilizer, whose interest spans the entire development spectrum; from pushing for economic equality and poverty eradication, environmental sustainability and climate justice, to the advocacy for political reform and cultural renewal. He is a member of the Pan-African movement, Africans Rising for Justice, Peace and Dignity.
- Marcia ThomasCo-ChairMarcia ThomasCo-Chair
Marcia Thomas has been Executive Director of USA for Africa for over 25 years. USA for Africa is the organization that organized the recording of and distributes money raised from the song “We Are The World”. She also served as Deputy Director at Oxfam America.
She has been associated with and worked for several big projects and events such as Hands Across America (1986) and the1984 Olympic Games. Marcia served as a consultant on the Jubilee 2000 Debt Relief Campaign. She provided networking and outreach services for the campaign’s office in the US.
She has served on a number of Boards and Advisory Committees for Africa focused women and youth organizations. Marcia was a Founding Board member of the National Summit on Africa (Africa Society) and recently served on UCLA’s James S. Coleman African Studies Center Advisory Board and is presently Co-Chair of Africans Rising Coordinating Collective (Board).
Marcia has a Master’s Degree in Education, with a focus on Administrative Management.
- Opal TometiOpal Tometi
Opal is a New York-based Nigerian-American writer, strategist and community organizer. She is the Co-founder of #BlackLivesMatter. She is credited with initiating the social media strategy during the project’s early days leading to the campaign into a network of approximately 40 chapters. In 2016, in recognition of their contribution, Opal Tometi and the #BlackLivesMatter co-founders received an honorary doctorate degree and BET’s Black Girls Rock Community Change Agent Award. Opal is currently at the helm of the Black Alliance for Just Immigration (BAJI); a national organization that educates and advocates to further immigrant rights and racial justice together with African-American, Afro-Latino, African and Caribbean immigrant communities.
- Rhoda BoatengRhoda BoatengRhoda is the Program Coordinator at ITUC-Africa; she has a tremendous work record in the political sphere and is highly skilled in strategic planning, administration and public policy research. Rhoda is a social service professional with a master’s degree in Labor Policies & Globalization from The Berlin School of Economics and Law.
- Rokhaya DieyeRokhaya Dieye
Rokhaya is a manager by training and has extensive expertise in the organisational management. After seven years of experience in the field of marketing and communication mainly in real estate companies in Senegal, she decided to have a career change and joined LEAD Francophone Africa to contribute to the emergence of a new generation of young Africans Leaders working for sustainable development. She was then recruited as the LEAD Francophone Africa Learning Program Leader. Rokhaya is strongly interested in CSR initiatives and how to institutionalize them in Africa to the benefit of local communities. She is currently a Consultant in Leadership and Management. Since July 2015, Rokhaya has been chairing LEAD Senegal, a youth leader’s national association composed LEAD Alumni living in Senegal.
- Sodfa DaajiSodfa Daaji
Sodfa Daaji is the founder and the executive director of the African Legal Think Tank on Women's Rights, a continental legal institute performing research, consultancy, capacity building, provision of technical expertise, and advocacy on women's rights. She serves as the co-chairperson of Afrika Youth Movement and is a part of the Coordinative Collective of Africans Rising and the Youth Advisory Council of the United Nations Girls Education Initiative. She is currently Resident associate at MS-TCDC, Training Centre for Development Cooperation in Eastern and Southern Africa.
- Sophie KanzaSophie Kanza
Sophie is the co-founder of the Sophie A Kanza Foundation, a home-grown NGO that has vowed to raise awareness to break stereotypes about Afrophobia and improve the collection and distribution of food, clothes and toiletries across South African communities. Sophie is passionate about inter-continental collaborations and projects, as she strives to influence malicious Institutionalzied Afrophobia policies. Sophie is planning to take her film Singabantu (We are human) on a continental tour and will open a youth hub in her hometown, Kinshasa as to inspire young people to create similar movements. In 2018, she was named the Alliance of Peacebuilding Scholar, One Young World Peace Ambassador and Brand South Africa Play Your Part Ambassador.