Throughout her career, Niamani has developed a reputation for her skill in connecting people and ideas.
She joined AGAG in 2001 and has guided its evolution from an idea to a vibrant network, working in partnership with the Steering Committee, members, and other colleagues working at the intersection of philanthropy and Africa.
Before joining AGAG Niamani worked with the Africa-American Institute (AAI) in various departments and programs. As part the Office of the Corporate Secretary she worked with the Board of Trustees. As part of the Conference Program staff, she organized domestic and international conferences on topics ranging from media, trade and economic development to gender, education, and international policy issues.
As Director of Services to the Field for the USAID African Leadership and Advanced Skills project, Niamani managed a grants programs for African-based organizations and promoted networking among African professionals working across the continent in different sectors. She was editor of two project newsletters and numerous reports. In her extensive travel throughout Africa, Niamani worked with stakeholders ranging from government and university officials to international NGOs and civil society organizations. Central to her work is a commitment to connecting people with common interests to learn from each other.
Niamani has a Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from Princeton University and a Master’s degree in Philanthropic Studies from Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.
Eden is adept at wearing a variety of hats and has spent the last 20 years providing operational support, creative content, information management, client services, editorial guidance, and event planning assistance for a variety of large and small organizations. She has a devotion to community building whether within the workplace, among members, or online.
Before joining AGAG Eden served as Business and Communications Manager at FJY Financial, where she planned and executed educational events, managed the website, social media, and quarterly newsletter, and provided operational, creative, and moral support to both colleagues and clients. She also managed a freelance business, Happy Creek Communications, where she helped companies and individuals find their voice and tell their story in a way that engages an audience on a personal level.
Eden spent the spring of 2015 traveling around the US on a 67-day cross-country campervan journey with her rescue mutt Annie, while documenting it all for posterity on her blog TravelsWithAnnie.com.
Wande has held several press related positions with InStyle Magazine and Nike, Inc. Since leaving the corporate world she consults with organizations like AGAG and manages their social media and web presence. She also follows one of her other passions- working with youth and serves as a substitute teacher for inner city public schools.
Wande has a Bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University and in her spare time, you may find her enjoying a scenic bike ride, reading on a park bench or practicing her photography.
Steering Committee – 2018
Respected members of the philanthropy community volunteer their expertise and leadership as a member of the Steering Committee. Members support the work of the staff in achieving the mission of the Africa Grantmakers’ Affinity Group.
Nyeleti has been a Program Officer at the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation since August 2015, having completed an M.A. in International Relations from Boston University last May. Ms. Honwana hails from Mozambique and is a self-proclaimed “suitcase kid” having grown up in South Africa, Senegal, England and the US. She received the Herman Eilts Thesis Award for best graduate thesis for her dissertation, titled ‘Social Movements in Africa: Mozambique and Civil Disorder,’ which examined the role of the state in mitigating the effect of popular protests in Mozambique.
Andrea works with the Higher Education and Libraries in Africa team on the strategy to develop and retain the next generation of African academics. Through the Partnership for Higher Education in Africa, she developed strategies to improve access to Internet connectivity for higher education and research. She earned a B.A. in Economics from the College of William and Mary, a Master of International Affairs degree in economic and political development from the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. She is a co-founder of the Africa Grantmakers’ Affinity Group.
Jessica joined the Mott Foundation’s Communications Department in 2014. Before coming to Mott, she was a National Urban Fellow, a leadership development program for mid-career professionals that culminates in a Master of Public Administration degree from the City University of New York’s Bernard Baruch College. As a fellow, she worked at Detroit’s Skillman Foundation. She also has worked as the executive assistant to the president of Los Angeles Southwest College and as a community relations manager for Kroenke Sports Charities, the philanthropic arm of the Denver Nuggets and Colorado Avalanche. She enjoys volunteering with programs that empower young people, and she is an active member of Delta Sigma Theta, Inc., the largest African-American women’s public service organization in the world. Jessica is a California native and a graduate of Howard University in Washington, D.C., where she earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism.
Yvonne has advised donors on their work in Sub-Saharan Africa focusing on alternative and sustainable energies, sanitation, and the leadership development of women and girls. She has forged connections with foreign government officials, built strong relationships with grassroots organizations and funded and co-developed projects in post-conflict and slum communities. Prior to Moore Philanthropy Yvonne was the Chief of Staff to Abigail E. Disney and served as the Executive Director of the Daphne Foundation. Yvonne holds a BA from Texas Tech University and an MS in Nonprofit Management from the Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy at the New School. She is a trustee of the New York Women’s Foundation and Cause Effective and a member of the Issue Advisory Committee at the National Center for Family Philanthropy.
William was a key architect in restructuring Kresge’s education programming and leads the education team’s continuum of grant activities from developing program strategy, reviewing preliminary ideas, and helping grantees develop proposals or initiatives, to awarding funding and monitoring existing grants. He was instrumental in developing Kresge’s Green Building Initiative and has spearheaded the foundation’s international grantmaking. Bill was the co-chair of the seven-foundation Partnership for Higher Education in Africa and co-founder of the Africa Grantmakers’ Affinity Group.
Vuyiswa is a Program Officer in the Ford Foundation South Africa Office. Before joining Ford, she served as the Director of the Mott Foundation Office in South Africa. Her prior positions include serving as a director at the then National Department of Provincial and Local Government (now Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs), where she served as liaison to the donor community in South Africa. Between 1995 and 2002, she worked at the Sedibeng Centre for Organizational Effectiveness and the United Nations Development Programme. Sidzumo holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Science from Wits University in South Africa. She currently serves as the Chair of the Africa Grantmakers’ Affinity Group Steering Committee.