A Global Community

Acumen’s dedicated team works across its five global offices in Accra, Karachi, Mumbai, Nairobi, and New York to support our work investing in companies, leaders, and ideas. Our entire global community — including our staff, board, and advisors — are integral to the success of our team.

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    Catherine Casey Nanda

    Director, San Francisco, USA

    “What appeals to me most about Acumen's experiment is that it is working!” [READ MORE]

    Catherine has led Acumen’s geographic expansion to 3 new regions over the last 5 years– setting strategy, building teams, fundraising and investing in new regions.

    Currently focused on building Acumen America, Catherine most recently helped launch Acumen’s Latin America office, based in Bogota, Colombia, and West Africa office, based in Accra, Ghana.

    Prior to this, Catherine helped build social enterprises in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania, which included expanding HealthStores’ clinics in rural Kenya. She also acted as chief of staff to Acumen’s CEO.

    Catherine holds a BA with Highest Honors from Princeton University, and an MPP from Harvard University, where she was a Reynolds Fellow. She is a Board Member of Jacaranda Health, a chain of maternity hospitals in Kenya.

    CONTACT

    E:ccasey@acumen.org

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    Jo-Ann Tan

    Lead Architect, +Acumen, San Francisco, USA

    “It’s really inspiring and energizing to meet so many amazing individuals committed to creating a better world. Being able to learn and grow with them is true privilege.” [READ MORE]

    Jo-Ann is the lead architect of Acumen’s community.  She is working to create a step change in terms of awareness and engagement for Acumen through its online presence and +acumen volunteer chapters.

    Before Acumen, Jo-Ann built a marketing analytics team and developed and new marketing strategies for a $1 billion apparel distributor. Jo-Ann has also worked at strategy consulting firm Marakon Associates in New York and Singapore. She began her career at the Monetary Authority (Central Bank) of Singapore. Jo-Ann received a BA in Economics and an MS in Management Science and Engineering from Stanford University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa.

    CONTACT

    E:jtan@acumen.org

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    Amy Ahearn

    Innovation Manager, San Francisco, USA

    “People are our central resource in the fight against poverty. Acumen envisions people as assets and complements their efforts with patient capital & creative energy.” [READ MORE]

    Amy is an Innovation Manager building online courses to educate social change leaders and inspire new approaches to tackling poverty.  She is passionate about using emerging technologies and design to help people all over the world learn in new ways.

    Most recently, Amy was an education technology project manager for an innovation lab at the Stanford School of Medicine where she built online courses.  She also spent four years managing international education programs funded by the US Department of State that trained teachers from over 50 developing countries. Amy completed a Fulbright grant in rural Malaysia and implemented a mobile health education program in rural Peru. She holds an MA in Learning, Design and Technology from Stanford University and a BA in English from Bowdoin College.

    CONTACT

    E:aahearn@acumen.org

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    Stella Tran

    Associate, San Francisco, USA

    “Acumen has a bold vision of the future, and is working towards a more inclusive world founded on dignity and respect. I feel privileged to work for an organization with courage to examine and transform broken systems with creativity, to see new futures with moral imagination, celebrating the human spirit above all.” [READ MORE]

    Stella is an Associate at Acumen America. As a member of Acumen America’s Portfolio team, Stella works on sourcing and evaluating early-stage investments in health, financial inclusion, and workforce development.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Stella was an Associate with Just Business, the impact investment arm of the non-profit Not For Sale, investing in companies that aimed to source ethically and to re-invest in the communities they sourced from. As an Associate, she provided strategic support to portfolio companies through her diverse and interdisciplinary experiences in design, human-centered design research, operations, and finance. Stella also has had the opportunity to work with social entrepreneurs from around the world, through product and design roles at the Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship at Santa Clara and the Ayllu Initiative.

    She has a BA in Accounting & Information Systems from Santa Clara University, where she was awarded the Miller Center’s Global Social Benefit Fellowship.

    CONTACT

    E:stran@acumen.org

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    Amon Anderson

    Associate Director, San Francisco, USA

    “I believe in leadership as responsibility to serve, embracing risk, and accountability to meaningful change. Acumen lives these values, employing innovation for a better world.” [READ MORE]

    Amon co-leads Acumen America – setting strategy, building community, and investing in companies across the US.

    Most recently, Amon worked on Acumen’s Global Portfolio team out of New York.  Prior to that, Amon led Acumen’s agriculture and water/sanitation investing in East Africa.  Amon was based in Nairobi for four years where he originated, diligenced, and managed a number of investments, building the agriculture portfolio from scratch.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Amon worked in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia with Cherokee Investment Partners, developing an impact investing strategy and building a community of entrepreneurs.  Amon began his career at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, helping to launch the Carolina Entrepreneurial Initiative.

    Amon holds a BA with Highest Honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he was a Morehead-Cain Scholar.  Amon also holds a MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business where he received the Frances & Arjay Miller Fellowship in Social Innovation and the Miller Social Change Leadership Award.

    CONTACT

    E:aanderson@acumen.org

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    Jo Opot

    Head of Business Development, West Coast, San Francisco, USA

    “This is not just another approach towards addressing poverty – it is the radical yet humbling idea of patiently investing where others have overlooked potential.” [READ MORE]

    Jo is Acumen’s Head of Business Development – West Coast where she leads the organization’s partner engagement and fundraising strategy.

    Prior to Acumen, Jo provided technological and business modelling support to early stage sustainability ventures as the Director of Business Development at Singlebrook Technology. Jo started her career as the Director of Programs and subsequently the Executive Director of StartingBloc, a social innovators training institute, which has supported over 1,000 fellows from 70 countries, including 30 early stage start-up entrepreneurs. She then joined TerraCycle, an innovative recycling company as the Global Vice President of Business Development and oversaw their partnership development in twenty-two markets.

    Based on her commitment to social innovation and sustainable business, Jo is a recipient of the Sundance Eco-Warrior Award, is a Social Venture Network fellow and has been featured in the New York Times and Fast Company among other leading publications.

    Jo holds a BA in Political Science and French from Middlebury College and a Masters in Sustainability from the University of Cambridge.

    CONTACT

    E:jopot@acumen.org

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    Markeze Bryant

    Portfolio Manager, San Francisco, USA

    “There are millions of Americans waiting for the markets to offer them quality products and services. Acumen will help entrepreneurs make this happen in a sustainable way.” [READ MORE]

    Markeze joined Acumen America in 2016 and focuses on early-stage investments in the areas of health & wellness, financial inclusion, and workforce development.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Markeze held roles at several private investment firms where he executed transactions in the food & beverage, health, and media sectors. He is particularly interested in how technology will improve health outcomes in disinvested communities in the U.S. Markeze began his investing career as an Associate at ICV Partners, a lower middle market private equity firm in New York. Prior to this role, he was an Investment Banking Analyst in the healthcare group at Deutsche Bank.

    Markeze holds a BA with Honors from Morehouse College, where he was a Bonner Community Service Scholar.  He also holds a MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania where he co-chaired the Whitney M. Young, Jr. Memorial Conference. Markeze is originally from Oakland, CA.

    CONTACT

    E:mbryant@acumen.org