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.

  • Close Drawer Bio2013 AGarg

    Abhay Garg

    Portfolio Associate Director, Mumbai, India

    “I'm deeply driven by Acumen’s investing principles - Social Impact, Innovation, Scalability & Financial Sustainability. I strongly support market solutions and dignity, not dependence.” [READ MORE]

    Abhay is a Portfolio Manager based in India with primary responsibility for the Energy and Water Portfolios. Prior to Acumen, Abhay worked with Axis Private Equity which manages a USD 150 M fund focused on the infrastructure sector. At Axis PE, Abhay was leading the fund’s investment in Shalivahana, which is the largest biomass power producer in India and where he also acted as an observer on the Board. Additionally, he worked extensively on other areas of the social infrastructure sector including education, healthcare and logistics. His earlier experience includes working as a dealer in foreign exchange and derivatives for corporate clients at ICICI Bank treasury, and as a tax consultant with Arthur Andersen.

    Abhay holds an MSc in Finance from London Business School. He is also a qualified Chartered Accountant and Company Secretary.



  • Close Drawer CatherineCaseyNanda_profile

    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.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 AGhassmi

    Afshin Ghassmi

    Portfolio Manager, Nairobi, Kenya

    “Acumen's ability to take risks, think outside of the box, and constant introspection is a refreshing and pleasant change from traditional views of development and poverty.” [READ MORE]

    Afshin Ghassmi joined the Acumen East Africa office in September 2010 and his primary focus is to build Acumen’s portfolio in Tanzania across all priority sectors. In addition, Afshin works on the agriculture and low cost housing portfolios, looking at new opportunities across the rest of East Africa. Before joining the Acumen, Afshin worked as a Junior Investment Manager for DEG (Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH) in their East Africa regional office. He holds a Master of Science in Economic Analysis from the University of Nottingham, United Kingdom.


    T:+245 716 252 802

  • Close Drawer IMG_0782

    Godfrey Mwindaare

    West Africa Director, Accra, Ghana

    “Many are called, but few are chosen.” [READ MORE]

    As West Africa Director, Godfrey Mwindaare is responsible for all West Africa related investments, operations and business development activities. Additionally, as part of the Portfolio Leadership Team, he is jointly responsible for the global portfolio of Acumen with special focus on the new West Africa investments.

    Prior to this role, Godfrey was Chief Investment Officer in the African Development Bank, based in Tunisia, with specific responsibility for the Extractive Industry in the Bank’s 53 member states in Africa. He also worked with Standard Bank in South Africa and Tanzania as Senior Manager (Strategy and Special Projects) and Head of Retail and Business Banking and Barclays Capital in London as an investment banker in the Mining & Metals Team. He has over a decade of experience in investment banking, commercial banking and development finance.  Godfrey has a First Class Honours degree in Mining Engineering from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology in Ghana and an MBA from the University of Hull Business School in the UK, specializing in financial management. He is also an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Bankers (UK).


    T:+233 208991606

  • Close Drawer IMG_0805

    Farrukh H Khan

    Chief Business Development Officer, London, UK

    “The environment, my colleagues, and the discourse at Acumen has reinvigorated me internally and intellectually, motivating me to do the hard work everyday.” [READ MORE]

    Farrukh H. Khan is the Country Director & CEO of Acumen Pakistan and one of the leading independent business and financial advisors in the country.

    With over 25 years of senior management and board level experience, Farrukh is the founding partner and former CEO of BMA Capital Management Limited. Under his stewardship, BMA established itself as the leading investment banking group in Pakistan and received several international awards, including the 2010 Euromoney award for the best investment bank in Pakistan.He has worked on many landmark transactions, including advising the Privatization Commission on the US$813 million GDR offering of Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL), which was listed on the London Stock Exchange, and successfully advising Etisalat on their $2.6 billion acquisition of PTCL, the largest M&A and foreign direct investment in the history of Pakistan. He has a deep understanding of business and investment environment in Pakistan and has worked with the senior most levels in companies and governments. He also has an excellent network and knowledge of business in the Middle East and South Asia

    Before founding BMA he worked with American Express Bank in Pakistan and Deloitte in London. He has previously served as the President of the Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce & Industry (OICCI), Pakistan Chapter Chairman of the Young Presidents’ Organization and on various private and public sector boards. Farrukh qualified as a Chartered Accountant from the UK and read BA (Hons.) in Economics and Finance from the University of Manchester.


    T:+44 (0) 7933 -616657

  • Close Drawer IMG_0223

    Jessica Martin

    Innovation Manager, New York, USA

    “Acumen constantly challenges me to rethink my engagement with the world and how to shape solutions for a future worth fighting for.” [READ MORE]

    Jessica is an Innovation Associate at Acumen working to scale Acumen’s leadership curriculum through +acumen chapters and online channels. Prior to joining Acumen, Jessica was an iCats Fellow at Driptech, a for-profit social venture that makes affordable drip irrigation for smallholder farmers, where she worked on building out the company’s international business operations in California and Pune, India. Jessica’s jump into the world of social enterprise was heavily influenced by the people she met while serving on the leadership committee of the NY+acumen volunteer chapter. Previously, Jessica was a market strategy analyst at U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management in New York where she focused on in-depth macroeconomic and investment strategy research. Jessica holds a BA in International Studies and Economics from Fairfield University and spent a year in Beijing, China on a Fulbright Scholarship researching the development of China’s environmental NGOs.



  • Close Drawer Jacqui Papineau_0130(Akash Kasar)

    Jacqui Papineau

    Senior India Fellows Associate, Mumbai, India

    “Acumen is a group of passionate people working in a creative environment to solve the problem of poverty. It's a privilege to be a part of this movement.” [READ MORE]

    Jacqui has been with Acumen since 2011, when she joined as the Executive Assistant to the CEO, Jacqueline Novogratz. In this role, Jacqui demonstrated exceptional capacity to build strong relationships both within and outside of Acumen, and she embodies the ability to work tirelessly to solve any challenge set in front of her. Building on her exceptional organization and execution skills, and a deep knowledge of Acumen’s work, Jacqui moved to Mumbai in 2014 to support the launch of our India Fellows Program. Prior to Acumen, Jacqui worked in the fast-paced Hollywood film industry where she worked for Wild West Pictures Productions and Creative Artists Agency.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0863

    Lynn Roland

    General Counsel, New York, USA

    “Acumen connects me to a global community, and promotes respect for and listening to that community. It tests my craft and judgment by insisting on accountability and innovation.” [READ MORE]

    Lynn joined Acumen in 2010, and is General Counsel, Corporate Secretary, and a member of our Extended Leadership Team and Portfolio Leadership Team.  In such capacity, Lynn ensures that our programs are carried out in furtherance of our mission and in compliance with law, and advises on organizational strategy and board matters.  She leads the global legal function, and works across functions and geography to develop and implement organizational structure, policy and projects.  Her role involves protecting Acumen, while also enabling it to function with efficiency and creativity.  Prior to joining Acumen, Lynn had a short stint at a digital services company as in-house counsel; she spent the majority of her career at McDermott Will & Emery, where she was a partner in the corporate/transactional practice and supported the pro bono program of the New York office.  Lynn obtained a BA as an English major from the University of Pennsylvania, and a JD from Columbia Law School.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 MSagala

    Minayo Sagala

    East Africa Legal Counsel, Nairobi, Kenya

    “The Acumen model embraces and celebrates individual strengths and weaknesses, weaving a beautiful tapestry of talent that seeks, awakens, empowers and inspires stories of dignity.” [READ MORE]

    Minayo is legal counsel based in the Acumen East Africa office in Nairobi, which currently manages investments in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ethiopia. She holds an MSc in Education for Sustainability from the London South Bank University and an LLB from the University of Nairobi. Prior to joining Acumen, Minayo was a senior associate at Anjarwalla & Khanna Advocates, a top tier corporate commercial law firm in Nairobi and also spent about a year and a half as a senior associate in its affiliate office, Adept Chambers, in Dar es Salaam Tanzania.


    T:: +245 716 252 802

  • Close Drawer IMG_0759

    Molly Alexander

    Head of Talent Development, London, England

    “We believe in the power of individual dreams. Our entrepreneurs, their customers, our peers and team. Unleashing that talent is an exciting imperative for truly social enterprises” [READ MORE]

    As Head of Talent Development Molly focuses on the culture, leadership and skill development of our team. She seeks creative ways to enhance our employee experience including identifying ways that allow each of us to connect with Acumen’s work and community, and live our organizational values to the fullest. Partnering closely with our colleagues in Leadership and across regional offices, Molly’s role is to unleash the potential of our internal team enabling them to excel in their demanding roles.

    In 2004 Molly started at Acumen working closely with Jacqueline in the CEO’s Office before moving to the Business Development Team. During her time in New York she was responsible for building and engaging our partner community across the globe through a variety of fundraising and global events. In May 2010 Molly moved to India to lead each of our fundraising, talent development, media and community building efforts there. After a 6 month sabbatical she traveled to remote parts of Nagaland, Burma and Indonesia to better understand the development needs of communities there, With a Bachelor of Asian Studies from the University of New South Wales, Sydney; Molly has lived and worked across Asia, India, the US and Australia (her other motherland). Based in London but most comfortable in sandals, Molly is at her most energetic when getting her hands dirty to solve some of our most challenging problems – either within the team or broader community.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0709

    Sachindra Rudra

    Chief Investment Officer, New York, USA

    “I believe capital and leadership in enterprises are potent factors to cause change. Acumen focuses these on low-income consumers and makes a vital contribution to reducing poverty” [READ MORE]

    Sachindra is an experienced investor and has substantial experience in running and scaling organizations with a focus on the consumer products, processed foods and healthcare sectors. Prior to taking on his current role of Chief Investment Officer, Sachindra was Country Director and CEO of Acumen’s operations in India where he was responsible for the full gamut of Acumen’s activities, and represented Acumen on the boards of Ziqitza Healthcare, Orb Energy, Lifespring Hospitals and PVRI.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Sachin was a Director in the India office of Navis Capital, an Asia-focused and sector agnostic private equity firm where he managed investments in the range of $15-50M through the full lifecycle of sourcing, due diligence, deal structuring, portfolio management and exit. He brings over 15 years experience, working in private equity, consulting and operations. Sachin began his career at Hindustan Unilever Ltd (the Indian subsidiary of Unilever) in Calcutta as an Area Sales Manager, where he did considerable work in rural markets and he then moved into consulting at McKinsey in Delhi, which included an assignment working for the American India Foundation. Sachin then spent a number of years at Piramal Healthcare, one of the leading pharmaceuticals companies in India, where he held various positions of increasing responsibility, including President – Strategy and Business Development and Business Head – Orthopedics. He has wide-ranging sector exposure in the investing space with a high degree of focus on healthcare, consumer products and processed foods.

    Sachin holds a Bachelors Degree in Economics from St Stephen’s College in Delhi, a Masters Degree in Economics from Cambridge University and an M.Sc from the London School of Economics. He has MBA from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 SDichter

    Sasha Dichter

    Chief Innovation Officer, New York, USA

    “Ultimately, the big question is: how do we change the whole game in the fight on global poverty?” [READ MORE]

    As Acumen’s Chief Innovation Officer, Sasha oversees Acumen’s work in Leadership and the spread of ideas. The encompasses Acumen’s Lean Data work, the Acumen Fellows Programs, +Acumen and other efforts to help Acumen change the way the world tackles poverty. In his previous role as Acumen’s as Director of Business Development, Sasha led global capital raising, including executing a successful $100M capital raise.

    Sasha is also a noted speaker and blogger on generosity, philanthropy and social change, the author of the Manifesto for Nonprofit CEOs, and the creator of Generosity Day. His talks have been featured prominently on TED.com, the DO Lectures, SOCAP and other major conferences; he has been recognized as an Innovation Agent by Fast Company magazine; and he has been a contributor to Harvard Business Review, Stanford Social Innovation Review and other leading publications. Sasha also serves on the Executive Committee of the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs.

    Before Acumen, Sasha worked at GE Money to expand financial offerings to underserved communities globally; at IBM, spearheading the company’s corporate citizenship strategy and launching a leadership program for school administrators; and at the microfinance group of Bank Rakyat Indonesia. Sasha began his career at Booz | Allen | Hamilton consulting to telecommunications companies in Latin America and Europe.

    Sasha holds a BA from Harvard College, a Masters in Public Administration in International Development from Harvard’s Kennedy School and an MBA from Harvard Business School.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 SBhandari

    Sushmita Bhandari

    Senior Finance Associate, New York, USA

    “Being born and raised in the third world, I strongly believe that Acumen's approach of investing in social enterprises are one of the key steps to create a world beyond poverty.” [READ MORE]

    Sushmita Bhandari joined Acumen in February 2010. Prior to joining Acumen, Sushmita worked as an Accountant at Universal Gem Traders.  She has BA in Economics from Hunter College, City University Of New York. She is currently pursuing her MBA in Finance at Saint Peter’s University, Jersey City, NJ.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 VShetty

    Veena Shetty

    Administrative Associate, Mumbai, India

    “Being associated with Acumen as well as witnessing the work in action towards creating a world beyond poverty makes me believe that dreams do not work unless you do.” [READ MORE]

    Veena Shetty joined Acumen as the Administrative Associate in the India Office in June 2012. Prior to Acumen, Veena worked with Intellectual Capital Advisory Services Pvt Ltd (Intellecap) for 3 years where she focused on Administrative and HR functions. At Acumen she is engaged in administrative and talent functions. Veena has received her Master’s in Commerce (Management) and Bachelor of Commerce from Mumbai University, she also holds a Diploma in NIIT.


    T:+91 22 67401500

  • Close Drawer Bio2013 YGilani

    Yusra Gilani

    Pakistan Counsel, Karachi, Pakistan

    “All of us have a right to basic services. Acumen invests in businesses that strive to make this possible.” [READ MORE]

    Yusra has been Acumen Pakistan’s Counsel for over 5 years. Prior to joining, she worked with Mandviwalla & Zafar where she represented various banks and public/private sector companies on diverse deals which included setting up and licensing various Banks, Islamic banks, Microfinance banks as well as undertaking mergers and acquisitions. Yusra holds a BA Honors in Economics and Politics from SOAS (University of London), a CPE from BPP Law School, a BVC from Inns Court School of Law. Yusra is a Barrister-at-Law and a member of the Honorable Society of Lincolns Inn.


    T:+92 21 583 4298 x 103

  • Close Drawer Bio2013 SSiddiqui

    Shuaib Siddiqui

    Director of Portfolio, New York, USA

    “The power of Acumen's model is using markets to address the problems of poverty, but the lasting impact of Acumen’s work is creating the dignity of choice among the poor.” [READ MORE]

    Shuaib is Director of Portfolio at Acumen where he oversees our global investing process, management of our global investment committee, new investment origination, and portfolio management.

    Prior to Acumen, Shuaib worked for two years in the Quantitative Alpha Generation Group at Citadel Investment Group, a hedge fund based in Chicago, where he focused on developing trading strategies utilizing fundamental company data. Prior to that, he was an Assistant Vice President at Merrill Lynch working on The Global Analytic and Thematic Research team. He holds a BA in Economics from New York University.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0210

    Carlyle Singer

    President, New York, USA

    “Carlyle joined Acumen in March of 2013, as Chief Operating Officer, responsible for Acumen’s core operating activities.” [READ MORE]

    Carlyle joined Acumen in March of 2013, and currently serves as President. Prior to joining Acumen, Carlyle spent seven years as President and CEO of Katun Corporation, a global, middle market, privately held company in the compatible consumables imaging space.  In that role Carlyle was responsible for all aspects of Katun’s business operations throughout the world. During her tenure with the Company, her key areas of focus were the development and execution of strategies designed to properly position Katun in a rapidly changing industry, to ensure sales execution around the world and to drive strong financial discipline throughout the organization. Prior to Katun, Carlyle was employed for nine years at IKON Office Solutions, a $4.7 billion publicly held office equipment distributor, before being acquired by Ricoh in 2008. She held positions as Senior Vice President of Operations, Vice President and Corporate Controller, and President of IKON France.

    Carlyle is an MBA graduate from Stanford University Graduate School of Business and graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History, with a concentration in Latin American Economic Development. She is also a Six Sigma Green Belt.



  • Close Drawer s

    Erik Ornitz

    Senior Portfolio Associate, New York, USA

    “I believe in the Acumen model because it embraces innovation, strives for sustainable impact and above all, puts human dignity at the forefront of its mission to tackle poverty.” [READ MORE]

    Erik is a Senior Associate on Acumen’s New York Portfolio Team, where he focuses on sourcing and executing early-stage global investments across predominantly agriculture, energy, healthcare and financial inclusion sectors. Erik also works with Acumen’s Chief Investment Officer on global portfolio management and capital allocation strategy.

    Prior to joining the portfolio team at Acumen, Erik worked in Global Capital Markets and Investment Banking at Morgan Stanley. As a Senior Analyst in the Investment Banking Division, Erik worked with industrial clients on strategic transactions and capital raises. As an Analyst in the Global Capital Markets group, Erik focused on originating, structuring and executing acquisition financings across healthcare, technology, industrial and energy sectors. Since 2013, Erik has partnered with UnLtd Tamil Nadu as a volunteer consultant, acting as a business mentor for innovative social entrepreneurs in southern India. Erik graduated from Brown University with a BA in Business Economics & Entrepreneurship in 2010.


    T:(646) 747-3855

  • Close Drawer Bio2013 PKhanna

    Prerna Khanna

    Senior Business Associate, Mumbai, India

    “It’s truly inspiring to be part of an organization that sees infinite potential for innovation and leadership where the world sees despair, and whose team’s ambitions are as big as the problems it seeks to tackle.” [READ MORE]

    Prerna holds a cross-functional role, working on the Business Development, Communications and Talent teams. She supports local fund-raising, manages external communications, and assists in expanding Acumen’s community in India. She previously worked with the Strategy team at Magic Bus, an Indian sports-for development NGO, as part of AIF’s William J. Clinton Fellowship for Service. Prior to being awarded the Fellowship, Prerna worked as Foundation Relations Associate for Plan International in Washington DC. She has a  BA in International Relations with a focus on Politics, Economics, and Development from Brown University. While at Brown, Prerna co-led a student-run organization focused on refugee resettlement in Rhode Island.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0770

    Sophia Ahmed

    Global Fellows Associate, New York, USA

    “Sophia works at Acumen as a Global Fellows Associate. She completed her Bachelors in Business Administration from NUST Business School in Islamabad in 2005. After working...” [READ MORE]

    Sophia works at Acumen as a Global Fellows Associate. She completed her Bachelors in Business Administration from NUST Business School in Islamabad in 2005. After working with a Evernew Concepts in Islamabad, she pursued her Masters in Marketing from Brunel University, UK, in 2010. Before joining Acumen, Sophia was working as a Commercial Trainee Officer with ICI, Pakistan’s largest chemicals company.



  • Close Drawer kimk

    Kimathi Ikiao

    Senior Portfolio Associate, Nairobi, Kenya

    “Acumen harnesses the entrepreneurial spirit by putting people first and making social impact investments aimed at reducing poverty.” [READ MORE]

    Kimathi Ikiao joined the Acumen East Africa office in November 2013 as a Senior Portfolio Associate. He is responsible for the Agriculture and Affordable Housing sectors.

    Kimathi joins Acumen with over 7 years of experience in the investment sphere.

    His prior role was as a Senior Investment Analyst at the Industrial and Commercial Development Corporation (ICDC), overseeing the Corporation’s equity investments.

    Kimathi began his career in the capital markets as an Intern at the Nairobi Securities Exchange, and later moved to Standard Investment Bank in Kenya as a Securities Dealer. Having developed an affinity to private equity and its role in development, Kimathi served a short stint with Centum Investment Company prior to pursuing his post-graduate studies.

    Kimathi holds an MBA from The University of Tulsa. While pursuing his MBA, he served on the University’s Student Investment Fund as the fund’s secretary in 2007. He also holds a Bachelor of Science in International Business Administration from the United States International University and participates in the CFA® program.


    T:+245 716 252 802

  • Close Drawer SMelo

    Santiago Melo

    Senior Portfolio Associate, Bogota, Colombia

    “What is most interesting about Acumen’s model is that it focus on developing a sustainable solution to eradicate poverty by listening and standing by those who are more in need” [READ MORE]

    As a Portfolio Associate at Acumen, Santiago is focused on growing the Latin America portfolio and providing management support to existing portfolio companies. Prior to joining Acumen, Santiago worked for Endeavor where he was in charge of searching and selecting high impact entrepreneurs, as well as providing strategic and operational assessment for the portfolio companies. He previously worked in the real estate and oil & gas industries performing business development and strategic activities and evaluating new investment opportunities. Santiago holds BSc in Industrial Engineering from Universidad de Los Andes in Colombia.



    T:+(057) 3208005678

  • Close Drawer Farwah Shariff

    Farwah Shariff

    Pakistan Fellows Associate, Karachi, Pakistan

    “Unlike typical philanthropic models which tend to just alleviate social problems, Acumen goes a step further by investing in viable and sustainable solutions and the people brave enough to carry them out.” [READ MORE]

    Farwah works at Acumen Pakistan as a Fellows Associate. She completed her Bachelors in Social Sciences with a major in Anthropology and Sociology from Lahore University of Management Sciences in 2013. Before joining Acumen Farwah was working on a sustainability and communications based project at Unilever Pakistan.



  • Close Drawer Avinash2

    Avinash Mishra

    Portfolio Manager, Mumbai, India

    “Acumen’s model is not only helping build transformative organizations, its Inspiring leadership and fostering a shared belief in a world without poverty. That’s what excites me every day.” [READ MORE]

    Prior to joining Acumen, Avinash was working with TAO Education, a New Delhi based education technology start-up which he co-founded. As the head of business strategy and alliances, he spearheaded the financial planning and projections, market entry strategies and managed relationships with various stakeholders including potential investors, advisors and clients.

    Earlier, Avinash was working with Citibank Corporate and Investment Banking team as a relationship manager for top MNC clients. He worked closely with Citi and client global teams on cross border transactions (FDI and M&A deals) as well as end to end servicing and advisory across the entire gamut of banking products.

    Avinash holds a MBA from FMS, University of Delhi and a BE (Electronics and Communications) from NSIT, University of Delhi.



  • Close Drawer Festus

    Festus Amoyaw

    Portfolio Manager, Accra, Ghana

    “Acumen does not have all the answers but the continuous sharing of ideas has made it stand out. Acumen inspires the world that success is an option if failure is not.” [READ MORE]

    Festus started his career with Amex International Incorporated a contractor for the USAID in Ghana Trade & Investment Reform Programme, Increased Private Enterprise Performance (IPEP) Component Project as a Market Research and Business Development Assistant. He subsequently worked in an indigenous Ghanaian Financial Institution, HFC Bank as Credit Analyst with focus on Small and Medium Enterprises. Based on the experience from the development and financial institutions he joined GroFin Ghana a subsidiary of the GroFin Capital a Fund Manager for GroFin Africa Fund with a total fund size of USD150million. In GroFin he started as a Business Development Manager and later became a Portfolio Manager.

    Until recently he was an Investment Officer with Investisseur & Partenaires a Paris based Fund Manager of I&P Afrique Entreprenuer Fund of Euro 55 Million in the Ghana Office.

    Festus graduated from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Bachelor of Science in Agriculture Economics. He also has an Executive Masters in Business Administration from University of Ghana. Again he is studying to complete a professional course in Accounting and Auditing with the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants, United Kingdom. With respect to languages he has a working knowledge in French.



  • Close Drawer 1

    Joy Gikandi

    East Africa Fellows Associate, Nairobi, Kenya

    “There is nothing more rewarding than knowing another person’s life is better because you were there. This is what Acumen is doing the world over – impacting lives and making a difference – and it is amazing to be part of a team that is empowering game-changers and emerging leaders who are driving real change in their communities.” [READ MORE]

    As the East Africa Fellows Associate, Joy manages the program administration, recruitment and selection, business development and communications for East Africa Fellows Program, as well as supports +Acumen and the Global Fellows Programs locally. Previously, Joy has worked with the Kenya Institute of Management in training and administration, in Kenya and Rwanda. She holds a Bachelor of Education (Arts) degree, and is currently pursuing her Masters degree in Development Studies.



  • Close Drawer Acumen Picture

    Ruqayya Diwan

    Portfolio Associate, Karachi, Pakistan

    “It's inspiring to work with Acumen because it constantly takes risks in order to support those brave entrepreneurs that are striving to create sustainable social businesses.” [READ MORE]

    As a Portfolio Analyst, Ruqayya is responsible for developing and managing Acumen’s investment portfolio across the microfinance, education and housing sectors. Prior to this role, Ruqayya supported the recruitment and selection process for the Acumen Pakistan Fellows Program. Before joining Acumen, Ruqayya held internships at Engro Foods Limited, Barclays Bank PLC, GlaxoSmithKline and BRAC.

    Ruqayya graduated with a BSc in Economics from Duke University in May 2013.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0187

    Ronald Joe

    Data and Systems Manager, New York, USA

    “Our core values (generosity, accountability, humility, audacity, listening, leadership, integrity, respect) allow us to go far as we go together to build dignity.” [READ MORE]

    Ron joined the global operations team in May 2014 as Data and Systems Manager to help ensure that our technology initiatives support Acumen’s mission and business model. He works with all global team members so that technology processes and data management can improve the way Acumen does its global work.

    He has over 20 years of technology-related experience from marketing, support, analysis, and development work with government, education, finance, and technology organizations in the New York area. Some of the teams Ron has worked with are from: The City of New York – Office of Payroll Administration, Columbia University, RailWorks Corporation, Lehman Brothers, Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse, and IBM. He has served as a Regional Director of a national alumni board for the University of Notre Dame.

    Ron received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame and an M.B.A. in Finance from St. John’s University. He also studied in a part-time evening program for Information and Digital Resource Management at Columbia University.


    T:(646) 747-3688

  • Close Drawer Ashley_headshot_updated

    Ashley Speyer

    Innovation Associate, New York, USA

    “I am inspired by Acumen's commitment to moving beyond the status quo, challenging conventional solutions to global poverty, and pioneering a new approach with powerful results.” [READ MORE]

    Prior to joining Acumen in June 2014, Ashley worked at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York where she conducted research on Cuba’s energy landscape and Brazil’s foreign policy strategy in Africa. Her passion for international development and social entrepreneurship began during her experiences in East Africa where she learned the importance of local ownership in development efforts. In 2007, while in high school, she partnered with a women’s cooperative and created a non-profit organization to build a school in Arusha, Tanzania. During college, Ashley spent time in Uganda studying international development and the impact of decentralization on citizen participation. She volunteered at a local human rights organization and wrote her undergraduate thesis on transnational advocacy networks and their role in enforcing international norms. Ashley received her B.A. in Sociology from Colorado College and enjoys hiking and skiing.


    T:(646) 747-3852

  • Close Drawer IMG_0309

    Eleanor Murphy

    Business Development Associate Director, New York, USA

    “Acumen isn’t afraid to be pushed beyond its limits. Taking risks and learning from each imperfect experience drives Acumen to be innovative in its approach to tackling poverty and creative in finding new pathways to change.” [READ MORE]

    Eleanor Murphy joined the Acumen team in 2014 and works as the Associate Director of Business Development. She is involved in extending our community of supporters, increasing fundraising efforts and cultivating committed partners across the US.  Prior to joining Acumen, Eleanor spent 8 years in the financial services industry at established financial institutions including Eaton Vance Management in Boston, MA and more recently with Alps Distributors in Denver, CO.   She was responsible for creating and implementing strategic plans to manage multi-territory client relationships and ultimately increase awareness of differing product lines.  Most recently she received a Master’s degree in Humanitarian Studies through the NOHA network in Dublin, Ireland and also holds a bachelors degree in International Relations from Boston University.



  • Close Drawer SabrinaDupré_headshot

    Sabrina Dupré

    Global Head of Brand Strategy and Communications, New York, USA

    “If any organization is going to make a serious and lasting dent in our world’s biggest problems, it’s going to be Acumen.” [READ MORE]

    Sabrina is Acumen’s Global Head of Brand Strategy and Communications. Based in New York City,  she is responsible for overseeing all of Acumen’s marketing, communications and digital function globally—including driving our messaging and communications strategy, and transforming how our key stakeholders, across all channels, experience the Acumen brand, value proposition and positioning.

    Sabrina joined Acumen after more than 15 years of leading brand, digital and communications strategy for start-ups, corporations and non-profits. She worked closely with supermodel and activist Christy Turlington, launching Every Mother Counts, a global maternal health initiative, as well as with Jochen Zeitz to build his private foundation for sustainability. Prior to Acumen, she was Chief Communications and Engagement Officer for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF). Her expertise in building purpose-driven brands, developing and launching cutting-edge digital initiatives, and driving change has resulted in an accomplished track record of growing businesses, mobilizing audiences and transforming interactions.

    Sabrina is a frequent speaker on the topics of social innovation, digital engagement and nonprofit impact. A native Texan, she has a B.A. from Princeton University and an M.A. from Columbia University, enjoys running (most of the time), has traveled to more than 28  countries, and was a 2014 SmartCEO Executive Management Award winner.


    T:(646) 747-3964

  • Close Drawer IMG_0217

    Jian Li Zheng

    Senior Innovation Associate, New York, USA

    “As our world keeps changing, I’m inspired by Acumen’s thoughtfulness and commitment in charting a new way forward for social impact.” [READ MORE]

    Jian joined +Acumen in June 2014 to build strategic partnerships and scale the reach of +Acumen courses.  In this role, she creates partnership models to engage diverse stakeholders such as corporations, academic institutions, and nonprofit organizations.

    Prior to Acumen, Jian was a Fixed Income Specialist at Bloomberg L.P and a member of the NY+Acumen chapter.  Her earlier professional roles include marketing and free-lance journalism, and also working in Peru on monitoring and evaluation surveys and interviews with small-scale farmers.

    She is a proud alum from University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she majored in International Studies and Chinese Literature.



  • Close Drawer Shruti_headshot

    Shruti Srivastava

    Portfolio Associate, Mumbai, India

    “What draws me to Acumen is its focus on eradicating poverty by deploying business solutions for the same, making the solution self-sustainable and its impact scalable.” [READ MORE]

    Shruti joined Acumen in October 2014 and focuses on the Energy and Water portfolios in India.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Shruti worked at the International Finance Corporation, the private sector investing arm of the World Bank Group, for 2.5 years, evaluating and managing investments in the manufacturing, agribusiness and service sectors in South Asia. Before IFC, she worked as an equity research analyst at J.P. Morgan, on the TMT (Technology, Media & Telecom) team, covering European technology hardware stocks.

    Shruti holds a B.Tech + M.Tech in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras where she specialized in communication systems.



  • Close Drawer IMG_1996_BEST ONE

    Esha Mufti

    Senior Business Development Associate, New York, USA

    “Acumen tries to recognize the way the world is, and doesn’t settle for what it sees in a very real, gritty, and tenacious way.” [READ MORE]

    Prior to joining Acumen, Esha worked at the Stimson Center, a think tank in Washington, DC. She focused on researching and writing about global development and security issues and working to develop cross-sector responses to these challenges– partnering with governments, foundations, corporations, and NGOs. Esha holds a BA in International and Area Studies from the University of Oklahoma, graduating magna cum laude and with honors. She spent time in Turkey during and following her undergraduate studies, first studying at Bogazici University in Istanbul and later working at Baskent University in Antalya.



  • Close Drawer julian

    Julian Wolfson

    Associate Director of Business Development, London, UK

    “Helping change the lives of those often left behind means being brave, patient, risky and willing to fail. Acumen is not afraid to lead: to challenge the imagination and reach down to help pull individuals, entrepreneurs and sectors up.” [READ MORE]

    Prior to joining Acumen, Julian worked extensively in the field of international development, focusing on health and nutrition in developing contexts in both the public, private and not for profit sector in throughout Africa, Asia, Europe and North America.  He has led business development, program implementation, government relations and international research projects.  He has also worked on areas of health and nutrition, micro-credit and extreme poverty alleviation as well as refugee issues

    Julian most recently led GAIN’s programs focusing on school aged and children and adolescent girls, reaching more than 3 million children and girls.  In this role, he led the development of a new strategy and new department, as well as numerous global partnerships.  Prior to joining GAIN, he was with Tetra Pak where he led programs with partners and customers as well as Government to develop products for consumers of various socio-economic groups in emerging markets.  Initially based in West Africa he led the relationship between Tetra Pak and customers as well as regional governments. As part of this role, he served as the technical advisor on school nutrition to the Government of Nigeria working closely with the federal and regional governments while overseeing the government department on school feeding and liaising with the executive branch.

    Julian has a master’s degree (MPhil) in international development from the Institute for Development Studies (IDS) at the University of Sussex, UK and a BA in Political Science from Mount Allison University in Canada.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0721

    Saba Mohsin

    Finance Associate, New York, USA

    “Acumen’s unique approach towards building a world beyond poverty and creating dignity for the poor encourages me to think beyond our limits and do what is right. I get inspired everyday by our extraordinary team and fellows, and feel privileged to be a part of this movement.” [READ MORE]

    Saba joined Acumen in July 2014. Prior to joining Acumen, Saba completed her master’s degree in accounting from Hunter College, City University of New York and interned with Viacom MTV Networks as an Accounting Intern. She holds a Bachelor of Accounting from Queens College, City University of New York.


    T:+1 (646) 747-3685

  • Close Drawer IMG_0886

    Justus Kilian

    Post Investment Manager, New York, USA

    “Humanity faces increasingly complex challenges. Capital and technical resources are necessary to experiment, adapt and eventually build sustainable solutions. Acumen is building that ecosystem.” [READ MORE]

    Justus is the Post Investment Manager at Acumen where his current role is focused on delivering leadership and technical support to Acumen’s investees. He was an Acumen Global Fellow in 2014 where he worked with Gulu Agricultural Development Company (GADC), a company that provides market access to smallholder farmers in northern Uganda. Justus has helped build and scale businesses in the US, Dominican Republic, Ghana, India and Uganda. He has worked as a Senior Financial Analyst at Merrill Lynch and as a Global Securities Technician at the Northern Trust Company. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Kansas and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He is also a CFA Charterholder.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0636

    Alanna Miyajima

    Administrative Assistant to the CEO & President, New York, USA

    “Acumen inspires me to believe in sustainable solutions to systemic problems, the power of markets to create change, and a world filled with dignity and choice.” [READ MORE]

    Alanna joined Acumen in June 2015, managing scheduling, logistical and communications needs for the CEO and President. Prior to Acumen, Alanna worked as a coordinator for a global humanitarian NGO and interned in the communications department at The Rockefeller Foundation. She has lived in England, Nigeria, Venezuela and China, where she cultivated a passion for international economic development. Alanna holds a Bachelor of Science in Business & Political Economy from New York University’s Stern School of Business.



  • Close Drawer Lawrence Riungu

    Lawrence Riungu

    Portfolio Manager, Kenya, Africa

    “Acumen’s patient, focused and supportive approach to investing makes us the right investment partner for any ambitious entrepreneur who has set their sights on developing scalable solutions to some of the world’s intractable social and economic problems.” [READ MORE]

    Throughout his career, Lawrence Riungu has actively sought out opportunities to launch and build new initiatives and businesses, including both within existing corporate organizations and through stand-alone entities. In the process, he has developed a passion for and significant experience in business model design and change management to meet evolving customer needs and competitive business environments.

    Lawrence comes to Acumen with 15 years’ experience in the financial and operational aspects of a broad range of industries including real estate and geothermal energy development, ICT (mobile commerce), energy commodity trading, electric power utilities, oil and gas pipelines, insurance and mining. He also brings with him a unique mix of local and international business experience and strong capabilities in evaluating and solving business problems. Immediately prior to joining Acumen, Lawrence was the Kenya Country Manager for BizCorps, a non-profit program that connects recent MBA graduates with SME entrepreneurs in emerging markets. In the past, Lawrence has worked in investment roles at Centum Investment Company, East Africa’s largest publicly traded investment company and has also worked as an investment banker at JPMorgan Chase in New York and First Africa Capital in Nairobi.

    Lawrence earned his MBA from Harvard Business School and holds a dual Bachelor of Arts (A.B) degree in Economics and Computer Science from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York.



  • Close Drawer Loise Nduati bio

    Loise Nduati

    Senior Business Associate, NAIROBI, KENYA

    “Acumen is challenging the world’s status quo-allowing people to gain choice, dignity and hope in building their own futures. This is what excites me about being part of the team.” [READ MORE]

    As the Senior Business Associate for East Africa, Loise holds a cross-functional role working on the Business Development, Communications and Talent teams. She was previously the Executive Officer of the Federation of Women Entrepreneur Associations, the umbrella body of women entrepreneur associations in Kenya leading policy advocacy, capacity building, strategic business development and entrepreneur mentorship for an enabling business environment for women. Just prior to joining Acumen, Loise was training business member organizations in East Africa on how to engage government for policy change. Loise holds a bachelor’s degree in Commerce from Kenyatta University and a MBA from United States International University-Africa.

  • Close Drawer Beatrice Onyango_biopic

    Beatrice Onyango

    Administrative Associate, NAIROBI, KENYA

    “Acumen calls for us to be leaders who do what is right and not what is easy. With such thinking, I believe that we can transform our lives and also transform the lives of the people around us hence being a positive change agent.” [READ MORE]

    Prior to joining Acumen, Beatrice served as the President of AIESEC from 2012-14 in Rwanda, where she worked with university students in Kigali and Huye to develop their leadership potential through exchange programmes and experiential learning activities.  She also served as a public relations officer at the University of Rwanda’s College of Business and Economic (then School of Finance and Banking).  Originally from Kenya, Beatrice is interested in leadership development for youth, women’s development and being a positive change agent.  As the Administrative Associate, Beatrice champions the operational needs of the East Africa team and provides executive support to the East Africa Director.

  • Close Drawer Martin Leboo

    Martin Leboo

    Portfolio Analyst, Nairobi, Kenya

    “Acumen has taught me to embrace complexities in the world. There are no simple and singular narratives, the problems are intricate, and the solutions are varied – and the answers are found by listening to those who are affected.” [READ MORE]

    Martin joined Acumen in October 2014 as a short term associate on the portfolio team, and in July 2015 joined full-time as a Portfolio Analyst. In this role, Martin supports the East Africa portfolio team in sourcing pipeline and doing due diligence on potential investments.  Prior to joining Acumen, Martin was pursuing his master’s degree in economics at the University of Nairobi. Martin has interned at the UN office in Nairobi. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Nairobi.

  • Close Drawer LiAnnIshizuka_headshot

    LiAnn Ishizuka

    Senior Associate, Social Media & Content Marketing, New York, USA

    “I strongly believe Acumen is redefining how to create positive and inclusive impact for all—through choice, not charity.” [READ MORE]

    LiAnn serves as Acumen’s Social Media and Content Marketing Senior Associate, driving engagement and awareness in the digital space. LiAnn joins Acumen from Los Angeles, where she worked in Digital Marketing at United Way of Greater Los Angeles focusing on communications and building a robust social media strategy to bring stories to life. Prior to United Way, LiAnn worked in digital advertising and at social enterprise start-up, InVenture, conducting fieldwork in India to build new partnerships with microfinance and NGO stakeholders. LiAnn holds a BA in International Development Studies from UCLA and is a Board Member for StartingBloc.



  • Close Drawer Headshot

    Nishant Advani

    Portfolio Associate, Mumbai, India

    “What I like about Acumen is its ability to deliver impact while ensuring business discipline.” [READ MORE]

    Nishant joined Acumen in August 2015 and focuses on the Agriculture and Education portfolios in India as a Portfolio Associate.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Nishant worked at Intellectual Capital Advisory Services Pvt. Ltd. (Intellecap), a boutique investment bank focused on raising capital for social enterprises, for two years. At Intellecap, Nishant focused on financial services with additional focus on microfinance, housing finance and payment services.

    Nishant has received a Bachelor of Commerce from University of Mumbai. He is also a qualified Chartered Accountant and has passed the CFA® Level 1 Examination conducted by the CFA Institute, USA.



  • Close Drawer Patrick_Oketa

    Patrick Oketa

    Associate Director of Portfolio, Nairobi, Kenya

    “Patrick is the latest addition to the East Africa team. He joins us as the Associate Director of Portfolio and will lead and guide the team in shaping Acumen’s portfolio strategy, management process, team and influence in East Africa.” [READ MORE]

    Patrick brings a wealth of experience in private equity, project financing, project cycle management, and a practical understanding of how resources can best flow to those who need them most. Over the last 15 years, he has worked with various projects and entrepreneurs to deliver practical financial and social value and added innovative solutions to their businesses across Africa. Patrick joins us from the Uganda Development Bank where he was the Director of Development Finance a position that allowed him to oversee the development and improvement of credit, risk management and customer service at the largest government owned bank in Uganda. Prior to that, he was a Partner at Pearl Capital Partner a fund manager that focuses on investments in the Agribusiness value chain in East and southern Africa. In the past, Patrick was the Chief Investment Officer of the African Agricultural Capital and also worked at the international fund manager Actis where he was responsible for the administration of the $100 million Actis Agribusiness Fund. He began his banking career at the East African development Bank where he worked for 5 years in Uganda and Kenya in various capacities. Patrick holds an MBA and MA in Banking and Finance as well as an honors degree in Economics.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0929[1]

    Genet Berhane

    Legal Manager, New York, USA

    “Genet is a Legal Manager in Acumen’s New York office. In this role, she oversees deals and compliance for West Africa and Latin America, and manages various contracts and grant-related agreements for Acumen.” [READ MORE]

    Prior to joining Acumen, Genet worked as an associate in the Energy & Infrastructure Group at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP. Genet also worked as a Law Fellow at the Center for Communication Leadership & Policy at the University of Southern California, where she contributed to a report on human trafficking online.

    Genet obtained a JD from Vanderbilt University Law School, where she served as editor-in-chief of the Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law. Genet earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film & Television Production and a Master of Arts in Arts & Humanities in Education from New York University.



  • Close Drawer IMG_1977

    Marica Rizzo

    Innovation Associate, New York, USA

    “Acumen has given me a new lens, built on moral imagination, through which to view the world and the community and tools to make a contribution. To change the way the world tackles poverty takes all of us.” [READ MORE]

    Marica’s journey with Acumen began in 2009 when she joined a group in Vancouver that launched the Vancouver+Acumen Chapter and set up Vancouver’s first social enterprise case competition for undergraduate and graduate business students. 

    Inspired by her work as a volunteer, Marica left her role as Operations Manager at skoah and joined start-up social enterprise, Wedu in Thailand to design and launch South East Asia’s first mentorship and leadership development program for young women. Connecting with her young mentor, and other inspiring individuals affirmed her commitment to working full-time in social change.

    Marica believes in the powerful blend of education and community to drive change. She joined Acumen in New York in 2015 where she is growing the +Acumen community through the online courses and global chapter networks.

    Marica holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of British Columbia.



  • Close Drawer image001

    Ishan Patel

    Compliance Secretary, Mumbai, India

    Prior to joining Acumen, Ishan worked with Abellon Group where he focused on secretarial issues of new start-up companies, compliances related...” [READ MORE]

    Prior to joining Acumen, Ishan worked with Abellon Group where he focused on secretarial issues of new start-up companies, compliances related to cross border fund transfer and framing the company’s Board structure which required him to be grounded in the dynamic changes taking place in the field of corporate law. Prior to that, Ishan was a part of Nirma Group wherein he provided major contributions to various strategic secretarial projects like amalgamation, de-mergers, shifting registered offices from one state to another and buy-back of equity shares.

    Ishan is a qualified Company Secretary, an Associate Member of the Institute of Company Secretaries of India and received a Bachelor of Business Administration from Sardar Patel University, Gujarat.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 BHassan

    Batool Hassan

    Director, Global Fellows Program, New York, USA

    “Acumen believes in building local institutions that endure and sustain, that spread hope and make the impossible, possible.” [READ MORE]

    Batool has been with Acumen since 2008, starting with Acumen Pakistan where she led business development, strengthened Acumen’s local presence and built a community of supporters.  She then joined Acumen in New York, and served a number of business development roles, ultimately serving as the Director of Business Development, leading the organization’s global fundraising strategy.  In September, 2014, Batool became the head of our Global Fellows program, overseeing the recruitment, training, and mentorship of our Global Fellows.

    Batool has keynoted at TiE Karachi on the role of social entrepreneurship in Pakistan and has co-written a knowledge paper on low-cost, affordable housing in Pakistan, The Challenges of Expanding Saiban, Scaling Affordable Housing. She also helped launch the first TEDxKarachi 2010 along with TED Fellows in Pakistan.

    Before Acumen, Batool worked in lending at TD Bank and in Marketing at HSBC. She has experience consulting in microfinance. Batool holds a BA from Rutgers University, and a Masters of International Affairs in Economic Development from the School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University.




  • Close Drawer AmonAnderson_profile

    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.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0191

    Carla Culos

    Brand Experience Manager, New York, USA

    “Our model has changed the way we see ourselves as part of the solution; as customers, as investors and as partners. Learning more together than we could have imagined.” [READ MORE]

    Carla is a Communications Associate at Acumen where she is the storyteller of our work managing grant reporting, collateral development and partner and portfolio related content.  Carla joins Acumen from Vancouver, Canada where she spent almost four years as an Associate with Renewal2 and Renewal Partners; a Canadian impact investment fund focused on organic food and green consumer product companies.  Prior to her work at Renewal, Carla worked in business development for technology start-ups focused on energy efficiency and carbon reduction projects in Latin America. While in Vancouver, Carla was a co-founder of the Vancouver Greentech Exchange and chapter leader for the Vancouver +Acumen chapter.  Carla holds an Honours in Sustainability and an Undergraduate Business and Communications degree from Simon Fraser University.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 DOnyango

    Duncan Onyango

    East Africa Director, Nairobi, Kenya

    “Any far reaching development can be achieved by implementing what we believe: That the promise of a continent can be achieved when the full human potential is unleashed” [READ MORE]

    Duncan Onyango joined Acumen as Director of East Africa in September 2012. He has been a long supporter of Acumen and informally served as an advisor to the East Africa team over the years, as well as being actively involved in the Fellows Program.

    Duncan most recently served as the Group Chief Finance Officer of Rift Valley Railways, where he led the structuring of a $287M debt and equity capital investment in the rail sector. He began his career with over ten years at Abbey National, a major international bank in London, gaining cross-functional business experience in both the retail and corporate arms of Abbey, including serving as the bank’s Head of Training & Management Development for the Wealth Management Division. Building on that experience, Duncan moved into consulting at Strategic Workforce Limited in London, before returning to East Africa where he founded Quantum Africa in 2006, working with many small businesses and entrepreneurs. He has expertise in strategic & business planning, organizational alignment and business transformation. Duncan holds an honors degree in Computing and Retail Management from Oxford University.


    T:+245 716 252 802

  • Close Drawer Bio2013 JTan

    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.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 JNovogratz

    Jacqueline Novogratz

    Founder & Chief Executive Officer, New York, USA

    “I believe that we have a chance to build a world in which all human beings can live with dignity, freedom and choice. It starts with imagining that world and then working together.” [READ MORE]

    Prior to Acumen, Jacqueline founded and directed The Philanthropy Workshop and The Next Generation Leadership programs at the Rockefeller Foundation. She also co-founded Duterimbere, a micro-finance institution in Rwanda. She began her career in international banking with Chase Manhattan Bank. Jacqueline currently sits on the advisory boards of Sonen Capital and the Harvard Business School Social Enterprise Initiative. She serves on the Aspen Institute Board of Trustees and the board of IDEO.org, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council for Sustainable Development.




  • Close Drawer Bio2013 KOkyere

    Kitty Okyere

    Business Associate, Accra, Ghana

    “There is no better accomplishment in life than reaching down to lift others up.” [READ MORE]

    Kitty joined Acumen with over 3 years of financial services experience from Barclays Ghana, where she gained cross-functional experience in operations, credit and retail banking. Most recently, she was responsible for managing Barclay’s Prestige Wealth Management unit. Prior to Barclays, Kitty held administrative roles at Chrisa Hotel and Falsyd Foundation School in Ghana. Kitty has a BA in Management and Psychology from the University of Ghana.


    T:+233 206301682

  • Close Drawer Bio2013 KJain

    Karuna Jain

    Portfolio Associate Director, Mumbai, India

    “By inspiring investors to see the potential of the BoP segment, Acumen has opened a whole new world of dignity and choice for them.” [READ MORE]

    Karuna joined Acumen in July 2012 to grow and manage the Health Portfolio and also to develop the Housing Portfolio in India.  Karuna has two years of investing experience with the $175M Aditya Birla private equity fund and $600M Milestone Capital real estate fund. She has also spent four years with the Aditya Birla Group and Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories in textiles, cement and pharmaceuticals businesses across finance and M&A roles. Karuna earned her post graduation in management from the India School of Business (ISB), Hyderabad. She is also a qualified Chartered Accountant.


    T:+91 22 67401510

  • Close Drawer Bio2013 MKumar Vastari

    Manoj Kumar Vastari

    Finance Manager, Mumbai, India

    “Acumen's values resonate with my personal values and this has made me more and more accountable with what I do. It is an honour to work with Acumen.” [READ MORE]

    Manoj joined Acumen as the Global Accountant in Acumen’s India office in September 2008. Before joining the India office, he worked in a temporary position at the Acumen New York office for four months. Prior to Acumen, Manoj managed finance and taxation matters in a chartered accountant firm and also owned an accounting firm. Manoj has 17 years of accounting experience. He holds a BA in Accounting, a BA in Law and an MBA in Finance. Manoj has also completed his Chartered Accountant Exam (Intermediate) from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India.


    T:+91 22 6740 1509

  • Close Drawer IMG_0185

    Sean Moore

    Portfolio Associate Director, New York, USA

    “I support Acumen's model because it champions the catalytic power of entrepreneurship and innovation, and ultimately exists to promote individual agency across the globe.” [READ MORE]

    Sean is a Portfolio Associate Director in Acumen’s New York office where he focuses on sourcing new investment opportunities, executing investment transactions, and developing global portfolio partnerships with co-investors and other strategic partners.  Sean is currently the relationship manager for d.light design, an energy investee, and is also responsible for managing a loan guarantee facility in partnership with USAID.  Since joining Acumen in 2010, Sean has worked on five transactions totally $4.3 million of invested capital.  In 2011, Sean spent 7 months in Accra, Ghana helping to set-up Acumen’s West Africa office and building its investment portfolio there.  Before joining Acumen, Sean worked as an investment banking analyst in the Financial Institutions Group at Merrill Lynch where he focused on Asset Managers and Depository Institutions.  After completing the analyst program, Sean spent two months volunteering and traveling in Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, and South Africa.  Sean graduated from the Olin School of Business at Washington University in St. Louis in 2005 with a BSBA in Finance, Accounting and International Business.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 RGawande

    Rohit Gawande

    Impact Senior Associate, Nairobi, Kenya

    “Acumen's core business is inextricable from its core values. To me, Acumen demonstrates the power of a vision whose execution is dependent upon listening to those it serves.” [READ MORE]

    Rohit joined Acumen’s New York office in 2011. As an Impact Associate, Rohit supports Acumen’s efforts to better understand and measure the social impact of our patient capital investing. He is responsible for the design and implementation of Acumen’s new impact measurement and evaluation systems, and works closely with the Portfolio Team to collect social impact data and generate insights from Acumen’s investees. Prior to this role, Rohit worked as an Analyst on Acumen’s Global Portfolio and Business Development Teams.

    Prior to joining the Business Development team in 2011, Rohit was an intern with Acumen’s Fellows Program. He has also worked for the International Water Association in The Hague, and on urban environmental issues for ISLES, INC in Trenton, New Jersey. Rohit received an A.B. in Public Policy from Princeton University at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, where he conducted field research in India on inequality in urban water and sanitation delivery.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0623

    Tom Adams

    Director of Impact, London, England

    “With data we learn how our investing works, where and why, to help our companies penetrate deeper into their markets, creating more delightful and impactful products for their customers.” [READ MORE]

    As Director of Impact for Acumen, Tom heads the organization’s work to understand the how and why of both creating, and improving, social performance through patient capital investing. Prior to Acumen Tom worked for the UK Department for International Development (DFID), first as Country Economist in Nigeria and subsequently leading its Wealth Creation and Climate Change team in Ethiopia. Tom has also worked as a diplomat for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) and as an Economic Advisor to various UK Government departments. He began his career working at Credit Suisse pricing derivatives.

    Tom holds a BSc (Hons.) in Econometrics from Nottingham University and a MSc (Distinction) in Development Economics from the London School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS).



  • Close Drawer

    Syed Umair Hussain

    Finance & Operations Manager, Karachi, Pakistan

    “I believe that charity is not a permanent solution to poverty in Pakistan and Acumen’s business-oriented model to tackle poverty in Pakistan is the right approach.” [READ MORE]

    As Senior Associate for Finance & Operations in Pakistan, Syed Umair Hussain is responsible for coordinating all aspects of financial management, accounting, book-keeping, Treasury management, Investment Accounting and Office administration. He was also actively involved in HR issues of Acumen Pakistan. Before joining Acumen, S. Umair Hussain worked as an Accounts Officer at Interglobe Commerce Pakistan (Pvt) Ltd, a large oil storage facilities and pipeline construction company, where he was responsible for various accounting and finance matters, including costing and Internal Audit of oil refineries projects. He has also worked as Assistant Accountant at Callmate Telips (Pvt) Ltd, a private telecom company in Pakistan. Umair holds an MBA in Finance and Accounts from Preston Institute of Management Science and Technology and is currently pursuing his ACMA from the Institute of Cost and Management Accountants of Pakistan.


    T:+92 21 3584 6430 32 x 101

  • Close Drawer IMG_0700

    Yasmina Zaidman

    Director of Strategic Partnerships, New York, USA

    “Nothing is more motivating than working towards a big dream, to change the way the world tackles poverty, and how, in a million ways, we are making progress towards that dream.” [READ MORE]

    Yasmina Zaidman is the Director of Communications and Strategic Partnerships at Acumen, where she is responsible for Acumen’s external communications and leads its efforts to engage with strategic corporate partners who share Acumen Fund’s commitment to supporting entrepreneurial approaches to tackling poverty. She initiated and managed the Water Portfolio at Acumen Fund, and has worked in the arenas of international development, corporate sustainability and social entrepreneurship for the past 16 years. She received a BA from Vassar College and her MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business with a certificate in Public Management.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 SIrtiza

    Saima Irtiza

    Associate Director, Leadership, Karachi, Pakistan

    “At Acumen we recognize that the right way is almost always harder but always worth striving towards; having the gravitas and persistence to do so makes the real difference” [READ MORE]

    Saima has been working joined the Acumen, Pakistan office in April 2009, and is currently managing the Pakistan Fellows Program.  Saima is responsible for recruitment, training and coaching of Fellows with an aim towards building the next generation of social change leaders for Pakistan.  Prior to this, Saima served as Business Manager, where she was mainly focused on developing and managing Acumen’s Health and Education Portfolio. Before joining Acumen, Saima worked as CEO and Managing Partner of The Review Private Limited, a company formed to acquire and run a test prep franchise, The Princeton Review. Before making this entrepreneurial shift, Saima worked for six years in the financial sector; her last assignment was at Global Securities, a brokerage firm, where she worked as Senior Associate, Corporate Finance. Saima holds an MBA from Lahore University of Management Sciences.



  • Close Drawer

    Noor Ullah

    Global Agriculture Lead, Karachi, Pakistan

    “Acumen is an organization with a soul. It encourages intellectual curiosity and there is space for an active dialogue on what works for the poor and what does not.” [READ MORE]

    Noor joined Acumen in 2007. Since joining Noor has been working on the growth of Acumen’s Agriculture Portfolio. He co-leads Acumen’s efforts in the Agriculture sector globally and is responsible for leading our Agriculture work in Pakistan. In addition to his work in Agriculture, Noor also leads Acumen Pakistan’s Energy and Water Portfolios. Before joining Acumen, Noor served as a consultant for the World Bank, where he studied the socio-economic impact of environmental degradation in the province of Punjab. Previously, he worked as a business development consultant for a number of multinationals and private enterprises. He handled projects involving feasibility studies and financial projection analyses. He also worked as Manager Business Development and Manager Projects at Microtech Industries, an engineering and telecom multinational. Immediately after graduation he had also served as a Research Analyst with Dr. Salman Shah (a renowned Finance expert and Pakistan’s ex-Finance Advisor for the Federal Government) on a number of research papers for PILDAT (Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency). He holds a Bachelor degree with Honors, in Economics and Computer Sciences from Lahore University of Management Sciences.


    T:+92 42 3586 1240

  • Close Drawer Bio2013 PAkpesey

    Prince Akpesey

    Portfolio Manager, Accra, Ghana

    “Acumen is reinventing the world of marginalized communities with the power of patient capital. I believe access to economic opportunities enables people to live dignified lives.” [READ MORE]

    Prince is based in the West Africa office and is focused on the development of investments for Acumen across the region. He also supports the West Africa Director in managing investments across portfolios and business development.

    Before joining Acumen, Prince worked for a boutique investment banking firm in Accra, Ghana, where he set up and led the corporate finance team to execute transactions across various industries. Prior to that, he spent 7 years at First Atlantic Bank Limited where he worked in various roles including equity research, investment management, corporate finance, strategy and corporate development and where he was a key member of the team that transformed the equity trading desk into one of the top three equity trading businesses in Ghana. He was also involved in some of the key M&A and other advisory transactions executed by the bank.

    Prince holds a Masters in Finance and Management from the Cranfield University School of Management where he was a Chevening Scholar and a Bachelor of Science in Administration from the University of Ghana Business School. Prince is an Authorized Dealing Officer of the Ghana Stock Exchange.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 ASingh

    Ambika Singh Sampat

    Business Development Manager, London, England

    “The journey at Acumen has been one of (re)discovering the significance of generosity and humility in being a leader, and the power of audacity and integrity in making dreams come true.” [READ MORE]

    Ambika joined Acumen’s London Business Development team in early 2013, prior to which she spent most of the past decade training and working in the Biomedical Research field. Having been awarded a PhD in Obstetrics & Gynecology from the University of Western Australia in 2011, Ambika relocated to London and worked as a Post-doctoral Research Associate in Maternal Health at St. Thomas’ Hospital with King’s College London. While still very enthusiastic about the healthcare sector, Ambika pursued her growing interest in international development, operations and business development, and worked for management consultants Alcimed in 2012. She has had varied exposure to social enterprises and working with communities in that space globally. While doing her PhD, she co-founded an NGO iNUT-Who? (if Not U Then Who?) to spread awareness, empower and fundraise for charities, social enterprises and individual causes, all of which paved her way to the impact investment world of Acumen. Ambika is also on the Executive Committee of London+Acumen, one of Acumen’s 22 volunteer-led chapters worldwide, and the first +Acumen chapter in Europe, leading their annual flagship DIGNITY Photography event to educate and spread awareness of the importance of dignity, not dependence, in changing the way the world tackles poverty. Ambika completed her BSc and MSc (Hon) degrees from the University of Auckland, New Zealand. 


    T:+44 20 7961 2522

  • Close Drawer IMG_0742

    Meghan Curran

    Global Talent Manager, New York, USA

    “At Acumen, our values are not just words on a page – they are our bottom line, and they are brought to life every day by our team, investees and fellows around the world.” [READ MORE]

    As the Talent Senior Associate, Meghan manages the systems and tools that enable Acumen to attract, engage, and develop our global team.  Working closely with Talent and other colleagues around the world, Meghan champions the employee experience, ensuring that the recruitment, onboarding, compensation, talent development and performance management processes match our values and empower the organization to fulfill its mission.

    Meghan’s career began as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Guatemala, working on enterprise development and citizen participation initiatives.   Upon returning to the States, Meghan facilitated loans and created a financial literacy program for Grameen America, the U.S. affiliate of Muhammad Yunus’ Grameen Bank.

    Just prior to joining Acumen in 2013, she completed her MBA at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, where she co-taught a social impact consulting course in India and launched a secondary business unit for Soluciones Comunitarias, a Guatemalan social enterprise.  Meghan also holds a BA from American University in Public Communication and Political Science, and is fluent in Spanish.



  • Close Drawer Bio2013 VBarco

    Virgilio Barco

    Latin America Director, Bogota, Colombia

    “Virgilio joined Acumen as Director of Latin America in September 2013. He is responsible for all Latin America related investments, operations and business development activities. Before...” [READ MORE]

    Virgilio joined Acumen as Director of Latin America in September 2013. He is responsible for all Latin America related investments, operations and business development activities.

    Before joining Acumen, he was the Executive Director of the non-profit Social Investment Bank (Banca de Inversión Social), which has helped lead the development of the impact investing space in Colombia. Prior to that, he was the Founding Director of Invest in Bogota, a public-private partnership that promotes foreign direct investment to the Greater Bogota region. In 2009, Invest in Bogota was ranked as the top non-OECD investment promotion agency in the world by the IFC. Virgilio also headed the privatization unit at the Colombian Ministry of Finance and was an advisor on local economic development for the Bogota Planning Department. He has worked in private equity with FondElec Group, as a management consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton in Brazil and as a financial analyst at Citibank Spain. He holds a B.A. in Government from Harvard College, an M.S. from the MIT Sloan School of Management and an M.A. in Economics from NYU.



  • Close Drawer IMG_1984

    Lindsay Camacho

    Senior Strategic Engagement Associate, Office of the CEO, New York, USA

    “Acumen is unique because it has inspired a far-flung, worldwide ecosystem that is mobilizing to change the way the world tackles poverty.” [READ MORE]

    Lindsay manages strategic relationship management, communications and events for Jacqueline Novogratz. She initially joined Acumen in January 2014 as the Executive Assistant to the CEO. Prior to Acumen, Lindsay worked for the U.S. House of Representatives and volunteered with resettled refugees in Washington, D.C. She has also lived and worked in Australia and Japan, volunteering with the Asylum Seekers Centre of New South Wales and working for the Japanese Exchange and Teaching Programme. Lindsay holds a BA in Diplomacy and Foreign Affairs from Miami University.


    T:(646) 747-3850

  • Close Drawer Saleem Ahmed

    Saleem Ahmed

    Administrative Associate, Karachi, Pakistan

    “The concept of Acumen 'Not simply make grants, but invest in entrepreneurs who have the capability to bring sustainable solution to problems of poverty' very much impressed me.” [READ MORE]

    Saleem has over 30 years of experience as Personal Secretary in different organizations. Prior to joining Acumen Pakistan he has worked as Assistant Vice President, Corporate Secretarial to CEO of BMA Capital Management Limited for 18 years. He was also hold the additional charge of Head of Administration at BMA Capital. Saleem was responsible for all types of secretarial job and supervision of Administration Department at BMA Capital.

    Saleem holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Karachi, Pakistan.



  • Close Drawer Khubaib Siddiqui

    Khubaib Siddiqui

    Senior Portfolio Associate, Lahore, Pakistan

    “Acumen’s model is about making markets work for the BoP, which is the segment often most severely affected by market failures in the developing world.” [READ MORE]

    As Pakistan Portfolio Associate, Khubaib Siddiqui is responsible for managing existing investments and supporting portfolio growth in the Energy sector. Khubaib has over two years of experience in capital markets and corporate and investment banking. He has previously worked as an Equity Trader in the Treasury and Capital Markets Group of United Bank Limited where he was responsible for managing a short-term equity trading portfolio. He has also had a brief stint as a Relationship Manager in the Corporate and Investment Banking Group of Habib Bank Limited. Khubaib holds an MA in Economics from Duke University and a BSc (Hons.) in Economics from Lahore University of Management Sciences.



  • Close Drawer Bavidra

    Bavidra Mohan

    India Head of Leadership and Strategic Partnerships, Mumbai, India

    “I believe in Acumen's model because it recognizes dignity as the cornerstone of freedom, happiness and opportunity.” [READ MORE]

    Bavidra started his career as a Social Strategy Consultant with JWT, helping Fortune 500’s create shared value by aligning social impact with overarching business strategy. In 2011, Bavidra was selected as an Acumen Global Fellow where he was placed with d.light design in Shenzhen and New Delhi, working on brand development, product launches and new product innovation.  Upon completion of the Global Fellowship Bavidra Co-Founded a technology start-up in San Francisco that built mobile products for sustainable urban mobility. He holds a BA(h) in Sociology for Queen’s University and an MA from Kingston University.



  • Close Drawer Pic1_small

    Jhoomer Sinha

    Senior Portfolio Associate, Mumbai, India

    “What I like best about Acumen is its commitment towards providing choice and dignity to everyone in the world using the power of capital and innovation.” [READ MORE]

    Jhoomer joined Acumen in April 2014 as a Senior Portfolio Associate. She is focussed on developing Acumen’s Health and Housing portfolios in India.

    Before joining Acumen, Jhoomer worked as a strategy consultant at Accenture Management Consulting, where she advised clients across public systems, health and development sector. Her work also involved financial value analysis to identify execution challenges and potential opportunities such as value chain improvement, cost restructuring, M&A and market expansion opportunities for global clients across various sectors.
    Prior to Accenture, she worked briefly in an Indian I-Bank in the role of an M&A analyst.

    Jhoomer has completed her B.Tech in Electronics Engineering from the National Institute of Technology, Surat and has an MBA from Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0340

    Amrita Bhandari

    Chief Financial Officer, New York, USA

    “Acumen’s focus on building a world based on dignity through creative though tangible solutions is why I am so passionate about working here.” [READ MORE]

    Amrita is Acumen’s global CFO, responsible for financial operations across our geographies, strategy, planning and reporting.

    Prior to Acumen, Amrita was CFO of Katzenbach Partners, a dynamic management consulting firm and was instrumental in the merger integration of Katzenbach with Booz & Co.  In addition to her management role, she consulted with clients across a range of industries with a focus on strategy and planning.  Since then, she developed her own independent consulting practice with a focus on inspiring organizations in the social sector. Amrita has worked with Acumen in the past as a strategy consultant covering a range of topics such as clarifying Acumen’s business model, developing a multi-year operating plan and evaluating Acumen’s employee compensation plans.  Amrita has also worked with Management Leadership for Tomorrow, Edelman and other professional services firms.  Amrita received a BA in International Relations from The College of Wooster.



    T:(646) 747-3687

  • Close Drawer IMG_0363

    Tomoko Matsukawa

    Innovation Manager, New York, USA

    “+Acumen Chapters & Courses provide means for leadership development and community engagement for everyone around the world. Seeing those people influencing the lives of others has been truly inspirational.” [READ MORE]

    Tomoko joined Acumen in 2014 as a member of the +Acumen team. Tomoko was formerly a leader of the Tokyo +Acumen chapter, and she is now developing and expanding +Acumen courses and strengthening the network of volunteer chapters around the world.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Tomoko worked on business development with Quipper, an education technology startup. Earlier in her career, Tomoko worked with GLOBIS, providing customized leadership development programs for Japanese corporations, and at Goldman Sachs Japan in equity research and institutional sales.

    Tomoko holds a Master of Education degree from Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Design and Environmental Analysis from Cornell University.


    T:(646) 747-3859

  • Close Drawer IMG_0811_BEST

    Ajit Mahadevan

    India Director, Mumbai, India

    “I have always felt existing business models in emerging economies have been limited in their ability to generate employment, income or genuine innovation for those who need it most. Acumen plays a vital role in creating an ecosystem that is both sustainable for entrepreneurs while also meeting the needs of the many. These new paradigms will be vital towards building the economies of tomorrow that provide opportunities for all.” [READ MORE]

    Ajit joins Acumen from Ernst & Young, where he has served as Advisory Partner & Leader (Life Sciences) for the past six years. At EY, he was a strategic advisor to the leadership of some of the leading Indian and global life science and healthcare players with the focus being business transformation and growth. Prior to his time at E&Y, Ajit was President of Piramal Healthcare, one of the leading pharmaceuticals companies in India, where he built the international business from inception in 2002 to $300M by the end of 2008. Ajit held multiple leadership roles across strategy, M&A and business leadership. During his tenure at Accenture’s Strategic Services practice in UK and India, he led the development of one of the firm’s largest and most successful internal projects – the Offshore Development Centre in 2001, which has now grown to about 100,000 people across multiple cities in India. Ajit has worked in an advisory capacity to Acumen in the past, most recently participating in Regional Fellows selection panels in Mumbai.

    Ajit holds an undergraduate degree in Computer Sciences from PSG College of Technology, India and a Masters of Business Administration from Carnegie Mellon University (Tepper School of Business).



  • Close Drawer IMG_0904

    Kasia Stochniol

    Impact Manager, London, UK

    “What stands out to me about Acumen’s model is its audacity: supporting daring entrepreneurs in some of the world’s most challenging business contexts.” [READ MORE]

    Kasia joined Acumen’s Impact team in June 2014. Her work focuses on helping Acumen’s investee companies better understand their customers in order to improve business and social performance. She is heavily involved with Acumen’s Lean Data Initiative which is testing new, low-cost ways of communicating with customers often utilizing mobile technology.

    Kasia graduated from Harvard Business School with an MBA in 2014. Prior to that, she gained wide-ranging experience including various strategy consulting roles for both private-sector and government clients, working with start-ups in London, Jakarta, and Nairobi where she helped to launch M-KOPA, an Acumen portfolio company which finances mini solar home systems. She is a Fulbright Scholar, holds a First Class degree in Economics and Management from Oxford University, and in her spare time, enjoys snowboarding, hiking and triathlons.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0822

    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 from Middlebury College and is currently pursuing a Masters in Sustainability at the University of Cambridge.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0296

    Emily Wilson

    Senior Business Development Associate, New York, USA

    “Acumen, both as an organization and as a collection of individuals, excels at breaking down colossal, world-changing ideas into nitty-gritty, down-to-earth solutions.” [READ MORE]

    Emily joined Acumen’s Business Development team in July 2014, where she provides analysis and insight to our global fundraising efforts to expand and cultivate our network of dedicated supporters. Prior to joining Acumen, she taught English in Marseille, France, and spent three years working on systems upgrade projects and customer relationship management database administration at Interaudi Bank in New York. She holds a BA from Columbia University in Francophone Studies and Sustainable Development. In her spare time, Emily is also a volunteer SAT tutor and indoor rock climber.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0285

    Priyanka Bhasin

    Senior Associate Strategic Partnerships, New York, USA

    “Acumen’s model levels the playing field. It blurs the lines between beneficiary and grantor, puts focus back on human dignity and ensures we can work together to change how the world tackles poverty.” [READ MORE]

    Priyanka is a Senior Associate at Acumen working on the Strategic Partnerships team to create synergies between large corporations and Acumen’s work.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Priyanka was at Catchafire, a for-profit social venture that works to match professionals with nonprofits on meaningful skills based volunteering projects in order to build capacity for non profit organizations. While at Catchafire, Priyanka’s roles ranged from leading the Account Management team to setting up some of Catchafire’s first corporate partnership engagements, with corporations such as Merck, Viacom, and GLG. Previously, Priyanka was an Associate at Sanford C. Bernstein’s Private Wealth Management group. Priyanka has also worked as an entrepreneur, launching her own event planning company, catering to the niche market of South Asian weddings.

    Priyanka holds an MBA from NYU Stern as well as a BS in Industrial Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0848_BEST

    Amy Ahearn

    Senior Innovation Associate, 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 a Senior Innovation Associate 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.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0205

    Christine Ray

    Office Manager, New York, USA

    “Committed to helping others and envisioning a world without poverty, I am inspired by Acumen’s mission of transforming lives in a progressive and dignified manner affecting the destiny of others in a most profound and meaningful way.” [READ MORE]

    Christine joined Acumen in October, 2014. Her primary responsibilities include facilities and building management as well as Information Technology support.  Prior to joining Acumen, Christine worked for the National Basketball Association where she was responsible for facilities and office services management.  Christine was an integral part of streamlining processes and incorporating efficiency solutions and is excited to bring her experience and knowledge to the Acumen team. Through community service and volunteer work, Christine is passionate about making a difference in the lives of others.  She supports philanthropic organizations that foster youth development and wellness.

    Christine holds a Bachelor of Arts with honors from Adelphi University and enjoys running half and full marathons.



  • Close Drawer IMG_0267a

    Nancy Leon

    Controller, New York, USA

    “I am motivated by Acumen’s ability to hire extremely bright individuals who are passionate about the same mission and willing to take calculated risks to always take our work to the next level.” [READ MORE]

    Nancy first joined the Acumen finance team in July 2009 and returned to Acumen in January 2014 following a year-long sabbatical in India. Nancy is responsible for overseeing Acumen’s annual audit and tax filings and supporting the portfolio team in a finance capacity around systematizing the current accounting processes and procedures to better leverage the resources of the finance team.

    Prior to her time at Acumen, she worked in Product Controllers for the Equity Derivatives team at Goldman Sachs and  Lehman Brothers. At Och Ziff Capital Management, she worked for a hedge fund for the Portfolio Finance team supporting the front office operationally with Repo/Stock Loan lending.

    Nancy holds a MBA in Finance from NYU and a BSBA from Bucknell University where she majored in Accounting and minored in Art.


    T:1 (646) 747-3853

  • Close Drawer IMG_0320

    Venu Aggarwal

    Impact Senior Associate, New York, USA

    “Acumen’s endless appetite for supporting bold new ideas is what motivates me to work here. Some succeed, others don’t, but the culture of thoughtfully experimenting stays firmly embedded in the organization’s core.” [READ MORE]

    Venu’s work focuses on assessing and optimizing the social impact of Acumen investees in our Latin America and global portfolio, and finding rigorous, cost-effective ways to do this. Venu also leads Acumen’s effort to synthesize learning and insights from our work.

    Venu started her career as management consultant at McKinsey & Company, where she worked on strategic challenges faced by clients across the private, public and development sectors. She transitioned to PRADAN, a grassroots non-profit in India that focuses on livelihood generation and helped define its first proactive global fundraising approach.

    Just before joining Acumen, she completed a master’s degree in public affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University. She holds a Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Mathematics from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University.


    T:+1 (646) 747-3692

  • Close Drawer Naeem Zamindar_Headshot

    Naeem Zamindar

    Pakistan Director, Karachi, Pakistan

    “Accelerating the rate of innovation enabled by Acumen’s commitment to developing companies, leaders and ideas to focus on lifting the lives of the poor will enable our vision of a more inclusive and empowered world.” [READ MORE]

    “We are enabling a world where all of humanity reaches its full potential, is happy.”  Naeem Zamindar is a results-driven leader with experience in venture capital, entrepreneurship, finance, operations, general management, in public and private companies. He is inspired to create a happier world and has a great track record of envisioning the future, transformational leadership, leveraging innovation and technology, and fostering collaborations to enable others to consistently deliver strong business results. As the Pakistan Country Director of Acumen, he is excited about the opportunity to invest and build social enterprises/entrepreneurs that will bring about a transformative change in the way the world tackles poverty. 

    Previously, as the CEO of Wateen, he turned around Pakistan’s leading communications and cloud services provider, where he restructured and refocused the company, and invested in high growth areas such as mobile financial services.  He was on the founding team of Mobilink, which has become one of the most successful companies in Pakistan.  He left Mobilink to go do his MBA at INSEAD where his team won the European Business Plan Competition and started his venture funded social networking startup (Facebook before its time).  His company became a casualty of the dotcom bust in the year 2000 after which he moved to the Silicon Valley to become a venture capitalist with Intel Capital, to invest and build successful expotential growth innovative companies.   He returned to Pakistan in early 2004 to startup a successful non-profit venture called the Art of Living, an organization enabling the self-actualization of human potential for happiness.  After the Art of Living started getting momentum and did not require his full time attention, he returned to Mobilink to lead the Strategy, Program Management Office and Business Development functions.  He was a part of the team that massively scaled mobile users from around 2 million to 32 million within 5 years and started up and launched the broadband business division.

    He is actively involved in the development of entrepreneurship as the current President of The Indus Entrepreneurs Lahore chapter and sits on the Advisory Board’s of The Center for Entrepreneurial Development, the business incubators Plan9 and Nest I/O, the leadership development organization AIESEC,  and the Punjab Vocational Training Council.


    T:+92-21-3584-6430 x102

  • Close Drawer IMG_0238

    Carolyn Bielfeldt

    Associate Director of External Communications, New York, USA

    “Acumen realizes that nothing can be accomplished without listening to and learning from the people impacted by the world’s greatest problems. Only by unlocking the potential inside every individual will we create a world of opportunity, inclusivity and dignity.” [READ MORE]

    As Associate Director of External Communications, Carolyn is responsible for driving and overseeing all of Acumen’s storytelling, media engagement and global communications across all channels. Working closely in collaboration with every department in every office, she develops strategic opportunities to capture the breadth and depth of Acumen’s efforts and transform how our audiences experience and understand the organization’s work to increase awareness and deepen its impact worldwide. 

    Carolyn joined Acumen with more than 12 years of international media and communications experience. She began her career as an editor at Vanity Fair before leaving to become a Senior Editor at British import The Week, a newsweekly that paved the way for digital aggregators. She also freelanced for The New York Times T magazine, Rolling Stone and New York, and assisted literary icon and renowned gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson on what would become his final book. Initially drawn to journalism because of her passion for public service, Carolyn spent time volunteering with a family-run children’s center in Tanzania and returned from Africa to employ her experience into the world of international development. She went on to work as Communications Officer of the Revenue Watch Institute, an organization founded by George Soros’ Open Society that helps developing nations use their natural resource wealth to finance their development and, prior to Acumen, was the Associate Director of Communications for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, a $55 million nonprofit founded by Evelyn Lauder.



  • Close Drawer Asad Jafri_Acumen Pakistan_photo

    Asad Jafri

    Portfolio Associate, Karachi, Pakistan

    “The Acumen model is one that drives innovation, leadership, and social responsibility by fostering the next generation of leaders as well as partnering and investing in financially sustainable enterprises that bring about social impact, which in turn tackles the problems of poverty around the world. The best part of it all is that it is working.” [READ MORE]

    Asad Jafri joins the Portfolio team as Associate in the Karachi office where he oversees investments in Housing, Education and Microfinance.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Asad was a Senior Analyst at Goldman Sachs in New York, where he performed portfolio analysis of an investment fund exceeding $1 billion in capital investments. Prior to that, he was a Senior Associate at Deloitte in New York, where he worked on a variety of client projects in the areas of corporate finance, business valuation, restructuring, management and risk consulting. Asad completed his Bachelors in business degree from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, completing a dual major in Finance and Entrepreneurship.


    T:+92 (21) 35846430-32

  • Close Drawer Mary Nduta

    Mary Nduta

    Finance Manager, NAIROBI, KENYA

    “At Acumen we believe in a world of possibilities; where there are equal opportunities for the poor in which they can have a chance for a sustainable livelihood that restores their dignity. It is the drive and desire to change how the world tackles poverty that makes me proud to be part of Acumen.” [READ MORE]

    Mary has over eight years’ experience in financial management, administration, project management, budgeting and human resource management. She started her finance career by working at Farmer’s Choice Ltd for five years and was part of the team that implemented the ERP for the company. She later moved to the non-profit sector at One World International where she handled implementation of a mobile content project. She joins Acumen from the Rockefeller Foundation Africa Regional Office where she worked for five years in finance and administration managing the implementation of financial, administrative and human resource systems. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in International Business Administration from United States International University (USIU) and is a Certified Public Accountant.

  • Close Drawer _OFT7042

    Dennis Otieno

    Portfolio Associate, NAIROBI, KENYA

    “Acumen has pioneered a social and financial model that has left indelible footprints on the investment ecosystem.” [READ MORE]

    Prior to joining Acumen, Dennis was a Senior Investment Analyst at Grassroots Business Fund (GBF), where he was involved in sourcing, conducting due diligence and managing portfolio clients. He has also worked as a business associate at Transglobal Consultants where he helped Small and Growing businesses with working capital planning and management. Dennis holds an MBA, Finance option from United States International University – Africa (USIU-A).

    At Acumen, Dennis identifies, cultivates and manages a pipeline of investment opportunities providing critical services to the poor. He also supports Acumen’s post investment efforts to add significant value to investee companies.



  • Close Drawer IMG_1911

    Sky Stallbaumer

    Senior Associate, Special Projects to the CEO, New York, USA

    “I love that Acumen has the ambition and ability to try to change the world, and the modesty to avoid the temptation to shape it in its image.” [READ MORE]

    Sky joined Acumen in 2015 as a Senior Associate for Special Projects, supporting initiatives driven by the CEO and Communications team. Prior to Acumen, Sky worked as an Operational Communications Specialist at the State Department in the Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations, where he advised and deployed with teams managing programs in several countries on the use of technology and media campaigns to mitigate conflict. Additionally, Sky facilitated partnerships between leading international technology and communications companies and networks of activists in Myanmar, Honduras, and Nigeria. Sky holds a BA from Wesleyan University, where he majored in Government with a concentration on political theory. 



  • Close Drawer Osman Anwar_headshot

    Osman Anwar

    Senior Portfolio Associate, Karachi, Pakistan

    “I am supportive of Acumen’s model because I believe that investments which have potential to improve human condition around the world can create a virtuous cycle of inter-related benefits.” [READ MORE]

    As a Senior Portfolio Associate in Pakistan office, Osman Anwar is responsible for managing existing investments and supporting portfolio growth in the Agriculture and Water sectors.

    Osman joins Acumen with over six years of experience in commercial, corporate and investment banking. He has managed a diversified portfolio of clients in pharmaceutical, energy, textiles, commodities, food processing and automobile sectors. He has worked in deal origination, client coverage and risk management teams across some of the leading financial institutions in Pakistan including Standard Chartered, Allied Bank Limited and Habib Bank Limited.

    Osman holds an MBA from Institute of Business Administration, Karachi and a BE (Mechatronics) from CEME at National University of Sciences and Technology, Islamabad.



  • Close Drawer Kat profile pic (1)

    Kat Harrison

    Impact Associate Director, London, England

    “Acumen’s model offers an impactful way to contribute to positive change in the world; investing in companies working to deliver choice & dignity through products & services to those living in poverty.” [READ MORE]

    Kat comes to Acumen from international development charity, SolarAid where she created and grew the research and impact measurement activities to be a resource for the off-grid energy sector, now housing some of the most comprehensive data on energy access in rural Africa. SolarAid won the 2015 UK Social Enterprise Award for proving impact and was a finalist for the Best Practice in Research Award by PEGNet in 2013. She brings to Acumen the three years of data and learning from this work and a number of funded large-scale research projects being delivered throughout Africa. Kat chairs the impact working group at the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association and led the development of the sector’s harmonised impact metrics framework, being adopted by IRIS.

    Kat was recognised as Recharge 4040 Young Leader in Renewable Energy, was a finalist for the 2014 Red magazine Women of the Year award and launched the 2015 UNESCO International Year of Light alongside HRH Duke of York.

    Kat acts as a Research Advisor to the United Nations Capital Development Fund, previously created and led the monitoring and evaluation system at social enterprise Riders for Health and worked in M&E and programme management for the United Nations World Food Programme in Malawi. She has a BSc in Economics and International Development from the University in Bath and an MSc in Development Policy, Process and Practice from the University of Reading.



  • Close Drawer BEST_Zachary Foreman

    Zachary Foreman

    Post Investment Associate, New York, USA

    “The Acumen approach is at once profoundly idealistic and grounded in realism, which I feel is what allows us as an organization to tackle the problems of poverty creatively, yet systematically.” [READ MORE]

    Zachary joined the Post-Investment team at Acumen in 2015.  As the Post-Investment Associate, he is responsible for building Acumen’s Post Investment support to Acumen’s companies.  He facilitates the delivery of technical and leadership support to investee companies. Zach leads the development of Acumen’s investee community through online and in-person interactions.

    Prior to joining Acumen, Zachary worked at Axiom Law, where he worked on developing and implementing innovative solutions to the operational challenges faced by global banks, with a particular focus on creating technological and process-based solutions to enable clients to negotiate and analyze large volumes of contracts. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Yale University.



  • Close Drawer IMG_1923

    Teri Norton

    Financial Planning & Analysis Manager, New York, USA

    “I was first drawn to Acumen’s model of empowering, sustainable change. Since I’ve joined I’ve realized that we’re not just supporting change, we’re building the bridge between resources and meaningful impact.” [READ MORE]

    Teri works as Acumen’s Financial Planning & Analysis Manager, managing Acumen’s financial resources with the aim of maximizing the impact of every dollar contributed to the organization. Before coming to Acumen, Teri worked in corporate finance for SolarCity and in financial operations for Teach For America. Teri has an MBA from George Washington University and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Georgia.



  • Close Drawer image001

    Kazi Mghendi

    Administrative Associate, Nairobi, Kenya

    “While many investors focus solely on profitability, Acumen seeks to understand the social impact that its investments make. I believe this is what society needs most. Indeed it starts with standing with the poor, listening to the voices unheard and recognizing potential where others see despair.” [READ MORE]

    As the Administrative Associate, Kazi manages the operational needs of the East Africa team and provides executive support to the East Africa Director. Kazi brings valuable on-the-ground experience in East Africa’s development sphere coupled with solid administrative skills. Prior to joining Acumen, she worked in the microfinance industry and the humanitarian sector. Her past roles include working as a Credit Officer with a Kenyan microfinance institution appraising loans and managing relationships with clients, a Business and Entrepreneurship Trainer with AIESEC in Rwanda, an Administrative Assistant with Nairobi Chapel, and a Project Management Intern with Women Fighting AIDS in Kenya (WOFAK). Kazi holds a bachelor’s degree in Development Studies with a concentration in Integrated Community Development from Daystar University in Nairobi.