Meet our dedicated staff members below:
Africa Bridge’s field office is located in Tukuyu and is staffed by four employees, all of whom are Tanzanian.
Martha Mmbando is the Tanzanian Program Manager. She has been with Africa Bridge since January 2005 and has seen the organization grow from a one single village operation in Idweli to 21 villages. Martha supervises the Tanzanian staff and all income-generating projects. She also coordinates the work of our partner organizations and collaborates with local government. Martha’s strengths lie in her diplomacy, organization, work ethic, and commitment to the Africa Bridge mission. In her spare time, Martha cheers for Liverpool’s football team (known as soccer in the United States).
Medard Mwebesa joined Africa Bridge in March 2008 as the Project Coordinator for our Most Vulnerable Children Committees (MVCC). Born in the capital of Dar es Salaam, Medard is often in the field training, supporting, and encouraging the MVCC members in their efforts to provide essential services for Isongole, Masoko and now Mpombo wards. Medard brings technical skills and a strong dedication to strengthening communities caring for their vulnerable children. Medard also loves football and cheers for Arsenal.
Willick Siingwa joined the Africa Bridge team in June 2008 as Africa Bridge’s bookkeeper. Born in Mbozi District, Willick is a master accountant and handles the complicated task of converting US dollars to Tanzanian shillings to start-up grants that benefit village co-ops. Additionally, Willick has talents as a contractor, skillfully assisting the organization with pricing, purchasing, and delivering materials for healthcare clinics and school classroom construction projects. He also loves football and cheers for Chelsea.
Noel Msuha joined the Africa Bridge team in 2011 as a part-time project coordinator. Graduating from university in Tanzania with agricultural training and expertise, Noel provides professional training to co-op members. Additionally, Noel collects photos and videos from children who live in the villages where we work, which helps document Africa Bridge’s successes and provides supporters with meaningful exposure to life inside our villages. Noel also loves football and cheers for Manchester.
Africa Bridge’s US headquarters is located near Portland, Oregon and is staffed by one employee.
Alex Chester joined Africa Bridge in 2011 as the Financial and Operations Manager. Alex brings over four years of experience in the nonprofit sector, primarily in financial, office and program management, including bookkeeping, grant writing and youth development. Alex holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Gonzaga University, as well as a Masters of International Affairs in Economics and Development from the George H.W. Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University. He also served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Kyrgyz Republic. When Alex is not at Africa Bridge, his head is likely buried in a non-fiction book or he is out playing basketball.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu (South Africa
Awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984, Archbishop Desmond Tutu rose to international prominence through his anti-apartheid activism in his native South Africa. Today he is revered as a “moral voice” to end poverty and human rights abuses and has worked tirelessly to end the global AIDS pandemic.
Dr. Mark Jacobson, MD, MPH (Tanzania)
Dr. Mark Jacobson is the Hospital Director for the Selian Lutheran Hospitals in Arusha, Tanzania. Dr. Jacobson has served in Tanzania for over twenty years and is a frequent speaker and consultant in the area of health care financing in resource poor environments.
Dorothy Keville (US)
Dorothy Keville has devoted the last twenty years of her life to making a difference in the lives of people living with HIV/AIDS. She has prepared for her role after serving in the US Department of Health and Human Services; being a lobbyist for a pharmacy association and pharmaceutical companies. Dorothy is an organizer, devoted to the mission of prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS. She is the founder and former co-chair of the AIDS Drug Assistance Program Working Group, lobbying for Federal funds to provide pharmaceuticals for those who can’t afford them.
Sobonfu Some’ (Burkina Faso)
Author and teacher, Sobonfu Somé is one of the foremost voices in African spirituality. Her work has moved African spiritual practices from the realm of anthropology, to a place alongside the world’s great spiritual traditions, with a message of profound significance and practical application. Sobonfu has written two books; “ The Spirit of Intimacy” and “Welcoming Spirit Home”, the latter her newest offering that draws on rituals and practices involving community, birth miscarriage and children.
Margaret J. Wheatley (US)
Co-founder and President Emerita of The Berkana Institute, a global charitable foundation founded in 1992, Margaret Wheatley has been a consultant and speaker since 1973. In addition, she has served full-time as a graduate management faculty person at Cambridge College in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and The Marriott School of Management, Brigham Young University, in Provo, Utah. She has also worked in a formal advisory capacity for leadership programs in England, Croatia, Denmark, Australia and the United States, and through her work in Berkana, with leadership initiatives in India, Senegal, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Mexico, Brazil, Canada and Europe.
Dr. Kenneth Lema (Tanzania)
Dr. Kenneth Lema, a Tanzanian medical doctor, has accumulated vast experience in design, set up and implementation of HIV and health system strengthening programs in Tanzania. He was intimately involved in the set up of large, pioneering OVC, VCT and PMTCT programs in 2002/3 as well as the modernization of the National referral and teaching hospital. Dr. Lema played a key role in the set up of the Axios Foundation in Tanzania of which he was Executive Director until 2006 and in the set up of the Tanzania office of the Abbott Fund, the first and only Fund office outside of the United States. He met Barry Childs, founder of Africa Bridge in 2002 and has since been closely involved with Africa Bridge, serving on the Board of Directors between 2004 – 2010. He is currently working with Management Sciences for Health in Tanzania, leading a new CDC funded capacity building project and is a Senior Lecturer at the prestigious University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.