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Announcing Acumen’s Global Fellows Class of 2014!

Acumen is proud to introduce the Global Fellows Class of 2014! These 12 extraordinary individuals were selected from a pool of nearly 1,000 applications from over 100 countries. Each Fellow possesses not only a deep commitment to creating a world beyond poverty but also the grit and resilience needed to effect lasting social impact across sectors, geographies and cultural lines.

Representing 11 countries, this cohort brings a depth of unique skills and varied experience, ranging from software engineering, to management consulting, finance, risk management and international development. Together, they comprise our eighth cohort of Global Fellows and join a growing network of Acumen leaders that now includes our East Africa Regional Fellows, Pakistan Fellows and +acumen chapters.

The Global Fellows Program is an immersive 12-month fellowship for leaders committed to finding new ways to tackle global poverty. The fellowship begins in September with two months of intensive training in New York focused on the financial and operational skills as well as the moral imagination needed to push boundaries and create long-term social change. Following training, the Fellows spend 10-months living and working in the regions in which we operate to collaborate with our investee companies in solving some of their biggest business challenges and supporting the growth and impact of their operations.

Please join us in welcoming this next class of Global Fellows!

 Suzuka Kobayakawa Suzuka Kobayakawa

Suzuka will work in Lagos, Nigeria with Pagatech, which delivers universal access to financial services in low-income communities. Suzuka is from Japan and worked as a Reporting Officer for UNDP in Nepal.  She has sales and marketing experience and lead a sales team at Recruit Co. in Japan. She holds a BA in International Development from the University of Tsukuba and an MA in Sustainable Development from SIT Graduate Institute.

 Rajanthi Manivannan Rajanthi Manivannan

Rajanthi will work in Nairobi, Kenya with M-KOPA, which provides financing for mini solar home systems in Kenya. Rajanthi is from Canada and has worked for Cuso International in Ghana as a Strategic and Organizational Consultant.  Previously, she worked as a Senior Financial Analyst for Rogers Communications in Toronto.  She holds a BA in Economics from the University of Waterloo and is a Certified Management Accountant.

 Paula Hernandez Paula Hernandez

Paula will work in Mumbai, India with Edubridge, a company that provides vocational skills training for low income youth across rural India. Paula is from Colombia and has worked as a Business Analyst at McKinsey.  She has also worked as an Actuarial Analyst for Grupo Bolivar in Colombia.  She holds a BSc and MSc in Industrial Engineering from the Universidad de los Andes. 

 M Umar Ashfaq Mohammad Umar Ashfaq

Umar will work in Lahore, Pakistan with Pharmagen, which provides safe drinking water for the urban poor in Pakistan. Umar is from Pakistan and has worked as a Senior Analyst at Oman International Development and Investment Co. Previously, Umar worked as a Senior Research Analyst at Lakson Investments in Pakistan.  He holds a BSc in Math and Economics from Lahore University of Management Sciences. 

 Luis Lopez Martinelli Luis Lopez Martinelli

Luis will work in Nairobi, Kenya with Virtual City, a company that increases rural farmers’ incomes through mobile technology. Luis is from Mexico and has worked as a Business Unit Manager at Det Norske Veritas, a climate change and environmental services company.  He worked as a Commercial Strategy Analyst for CEMEX in Mexico and the USA.  He holds a Bachelor of Commerce in Entrepreneurship from the University of Alberta in Canada. 

 Kathleen Berroth Kathleen Berroth

Kathleen will work in Sogakope, Ghana with GADCO an integrated agri-food company in sub-Saharan Africa focused on crop production, processing and supply of cereal and protein-based foods. Kathleen is from the US and most recently worked as Vice President in Equity Capital Markets in the Investment Banking division at Barclays in Hong Kong and New York, and has previously worked for Morgan Stanley and Citigroup. She is the Founding Board Member of Roots of Health, a Philippines based non-profit. She holds a BA in Japanese Studies from Wellesley College and an MBA from NYU. 

 Justus Kilian Justus Kilian

Justus will work in Gulu, Uganda with Gulu Agricultural Development Company (GADC), which provides market access to smallholder farmers in northern Uganda. Justus is from the US and has worked as a Senior Financial Analyst at Merrill Lynch, and as a Global Securities Technician at the Northern Trust Company.  He holds a BSc in Business Administration and an MBA from the University of Chicago. He is also a CFA Charterholder. 

 John Collery John Collery

John will work in Uttarakhand, India with Avani Bio Energy Pvt. Limited, a growing company that creates pine needle gasification power projects for remote communities in northern India. John is from Ireland where he owned and managed a sustainable food event management company. Most recently he worked for iFarms Venture Advisors where he focused on agri tech investment. John holds a BA in Political Science, University College Dublin, an MA in Development Studies from the University of Manchester, and an MBA from Northwestern University. 

 Baheirah Khusheim Baheirah Khusheim

Baheirah will work in Hyderabad, India with Lifespring, a chain of hospitals that provides quality health care to lower-income women and children in India. Baheirah is from Saudi Arabia and has worked for the Islamic Development Bank as part of the Young Professional Program.  She has served as a Captain/ Leader for the Girl Guides of Saudi Arabia. She holds a Bachelor of Engineering Management from Missouri University of Science and Technology and participated in the International Relations and Diplomacy Program at Tufts University. 

 Asim Janjua Asim Janjua

Asim will work in Bahawalpur City, Pakistan with National Rural Support Program Microfinance Bank (NRSP), which supplies financial services for rural communities in Pakistan. Asim is from the UK and has worked for Google in the UAE and Switzerland. He founded a consultancy business in South Africa, providing design and brand consultancy for startups. Asim holds a BSc in Art, Design, and New Web Technology from the University of East London. 

 Aliyah Kurji Aliyah Kurji

Aliyah Kurji will work in Nairobi, Kenya with d.light design, a company that makes low-cost solar lights that provides cleaner, safer, and cheaper lighting to families living at the bottom of the pyramid. Aliya is from Kenya and has worked with Accenture as a Senior Consultant for over six years in the UK. She has also worked with SmallWorld Cambodia and is a member of RAPID UK Urban Search and Rescue. She holds a BA from the University of Warwick and an MBA from Oxford. 

 Adedotun Eyinade Adedotun Eyinade

Adedotun Eyinade will work in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania with Husk Power Systems. Husk uses innovative biomass technology to convert abundant rice husks into energy that provides power to rural villages. Adedotun is from Nigeria and has workd for KPMG for over four years, most recently as a Senior Associate in Financial Risk Management. He holds a BSc in Microbiology and an International Certificate in Banking Risk and Regulation. 

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