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Meet the 2023 cohort of West Africa Acumen Fellows

The fifth cohort of Acumen Fellows in West Africa comprises 20 leaders addressing the toughest issues of poverty and injustice in the region.
January 27, 2023
West Africa Fellows Announcement

Following a 6-month selection process, we are excited to unveil the fifth cohort of Acumen Fellows in West Africa. As we reflect on the makeup of this new cohort, we are inspired by the incredible diversity and talent of the individuals breaking boundaries to build a West Africa that works for us all.

At Acumen Academy, our mission is to unleash a new generation of entrepreneurs and leaders equipped with the determination and grit to build a more just, inclusive, and sustainable world. We define success not by how the privileged fare but by how the poor, the vulnerable, and the earth they inhabit are treated.

2023 west africa fellow, emeka nwachinemere launched kitovu in 2017 with a mission to improve african farmers’ livelihoods by building and deploying a climate-smart and post-harvest infrastructure enabling more than 12K farmers to maximize their yield. 

The 2023 West Africa Fellows are working on different initiatives that embody our mission at Acumen Academy, including developing a workforce across Ghana, Liberia, and Nigeria and addressing learning diversity in Northern Nigeria.

Between 2018 and 2021, Anita Nchat Kevin, and her team at Amina Dyslexia Center have trained school teachers, heads of schools, and parents on teaching methods to support children with learning differences. This has improved the learning abilities of 11,000 school children across Northern Nigeria.

Acumen Academy is unique not only because it is a place where entrepreneurs learn to model a different type of leadership, but it is the confluence where competence meets character and urgency meets action.

Working across 12 different sector areas and impacting more than 900,000 lives in the last year,  the 2023 cohort is demonstrating new possibilities in West Africa. We are honoured to support them on their journey.

What’s next for the cohort?

Over the course of the year, the Fellows will receive the training and the space that enables them to build moral imagination, listen more deeply, partner better, reckon with their sense of identity, and open their minds up to understanding the layered inconsistencies and differing perspectives of others.

At the end of the year, Fellows will join our global community of 1300 social innovators — all who have made an impact on more than 8 million lives across the world — to share in a lifelong journey centred on solving problems of poverty and building a world based on dignity.

Sign up here to receive updates about Acumen Academy in West Africa. Then follow Acumen Academy on Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter to learn more about the Fellows’ journeys. If you would like to contact us directly, please send an email to westafricafellows@acumen.org

The West Africa Fellows Program is generously supported by Global Affairs Canada.

Ahmed Ayoade Oyedotun
Co-Founder and CEO of Afrimash Company Limited

Ahmed Oyedotun


Ahmed is the Co-Founder and CEO of Afrimash, a leading agritech platform in Nigeria that utilizes e-commerce technology to streamline the farm input supply chain and makes agriculture more accessible. Before Afrimash, Ahmed founded Woculus, a platform designed to assist professionals and entrepreneurs in the digital world. As a social and digital entrepreneur, Ahmed is passionate about using technology and agriculture to create a positive impact in Africa. He aims to empower smallholder farmers and improve their livelihoods through the use of technology.

Amy Gaman
Managing Director at Nuru Nigeria Development Initiative

Amy Gaman


Amy is the Managing Director at Nuru Nigeria Development Initiative. She has over a decade of experience in leading impact-driven teams and programs. Her passion lies in sustainability and working directly with communities to develop solutions that combat poverty and support vulnerable people. In addition to her role at Nuru Nigeria, Amy also serves as a ONE Champion and community volunteer. She has received numerous awards for her work, including being named Humanitarian Ambassador of the Year and being recognized by the British Council through the Northeast Hub. She has also been named a Perennial Fellow.

Anita Nchat Kevin
Founder and CEO of Amina Dyslexia Center

Anita Kevin


Anita is the Founder of Amina Dyslexia Center, a social enterprise that aims to address illiteracy caused by dyslexia, a learning difference that puts 1 in 5 children at risk of dropping out of primary or secondary school. Prior to starting Amina Dyslexia Center, Anita was a teacher specializing in early years and key stage 1. She has also received training as a Dyslexia Practitioner from the Orton-Gillingham Academy.

Anthonia Ayamga
Senior Development Planning Officer at Bono, Regional Coordinating Council

Anthonia Ayamga


Anthonia Ayamga is a  Senior Development Planning Officer at Bono, Regional Coordinating Council. She has 11 years of work experience in the area of development planning. She is passionate about issues of climate change, gender issues, and activities that aim at achieving the SDGs. She has on various platforms contributed her quota to the development of her country both within and outside the country.

Dieudonne Perry
Executive Director at SMART Liberia

Dieudonne Perry


Dieudonne is the Executive Director at SMART Liberia, an institution that connects young Liberians and youth organizations to relevant skills, resources, and information to enable them to drive social change in Liberia and beyond. He focuses on Education Advancement, business development, and entrepreneurship to bring together young leaders in a communal space, equipping them with the resources and network necessary to drive change in their communities and beyond. Dieudonne holds a bachelor's degree in Biology and Chemistry.

Eleanor Thompson
Deputy Director for Programs at Namati Sierra Leone

Eleanor Thompson


Eleanor is the Deputy Director for Programmes at Namati Sierra Leone, an organization that helps communities understand, utilize, and shape laws to protect their land rights and environment. As a public interest lawyer and social justice innovator, she is passionate about using her legal expertise to empower marginalized communities. Eleanor holds a Bachelor's degree in Government and African Studies from Harvard University, a Juris Doctor from American University Washington College of Law, and a Master's in International Human Rights Law with distinction from the University of Oxford.

Emeka Nwachinemere
Founder and CEO of Kitovu Technology Company

Emeka Nwachinemere


Emeka is the Founder and CEO of Kitovu Technology Company, an agritech company that provides smallholder farmers with the data to make smart decisions about what to grow, how to grow it, and who to sell it to, enabling them to make more money off their farms. Emeka is a graduate of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, where he studied Mechanical Engineering. He has also received specialized training in Business and Entrepreneurship from Enterprise Development Centre, Pan-Atlantic University, Lagos.

Jefyne Togba
Founder and CEO of The Vantage Group

Jefyne Togba


Jefyne is the Co-Founder of The Vantage Group, a boutique consulting firm based in Monrovia, Liberia, that helps small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) build capacity and become more competitive in the market. She leads the business development division and designs and manages programs for SMEs at various stages of their entrepreneurial journeys. Before her role at The Vantage Group, Jefyne was an Executive Council Member at the Liberia Chamber of Commerce, advocating for SMEs and women-owned businesses. She is also the Co-Founder of the MRU Business Women's Network. She holds an MBA from Texas Southern University and is a certified PMP.

Jeph Acheampong
Co-Founder and CEO of Blossom Academy

Jeph Acheampong


Jeph is the Co-Founder and CEO of Blossom Academy, an organization on a mission to close the tech skills gap in Africa through analytics boot camps and dedicated careers support. Prior to his current role, Jeph was a founding member of Esusu Financial, a leading financial technology company leveraging data solutions to empower tenants and improve property performance. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics from New York University and in 2019, he was recognized as a Global Innovator by Expo 2020.

Josephine Saidu
Founder and CEO of Teach For Sierra Leone

Josephine Saidu


Josephine is the Founder and CEO of Teach For Sierra Leone, a woman-led results-oriented leadership organization that develops transformational world-class female leaders to end systemic injustices in the education sector in Sierra Leone’s most deprived and marginalized communities. Prior to founding TFSL, she worked as a Broadcast Journalist and Communications Specialist in both the UK and Sierra Leone, covering stories that empower and elevate women's voices. Josephine holds an MBA in International Business from Cardiff Metropolitan University, UK.

Oluwafunke Adeoye
Founder and Executive Director of Hope Behind Bars Africa

Oluwafunke Adeoye


Oluwafunke is the Founder of Hope Behind Bars Africa, an organization that provides access to justice to indigent pre-trial detainees and creates economic opportunities for incarcerated persons while working to reform Nigeria's criminal justice system. Over 7,000 incarcerated persons have benefited directly from their interventions. With 10 years of experience as a lawyer, Oluwafunke holds an Executive Certificate in Non-profit Leadership and Management from Lagos Business School and is a Fellow of Cornell University's Makwanyane Fellowship for Capital Defenders.

Omar Danso
National Coordinator at Activista The Gambia

Omar Danso


Omar is the National Coordinator at Activista The Gambia, a youth-led civil society network that works to promote social justice through the empowerment of marginalized groups such as youth, women, and persons with disabilities. Activista The Gambia works on governance, human rights, migration, human trafficking, and climate justice. Before his current role, Omar served as Campaign and Advocacy Coordinator, Project Coordinator, and Programs Manager for Activista The Gambia for over 8 years. He holds a bachelor's degree in Development Studies with a minor in Finance.

Rahmah Aderinoye
Co-Founder and CEO of Rashak Farms and Agro Allied Limited

Rahmah Aderinoye


Rahmah is the Founder and CEO of Rashak Farms & Agro Allied Limited, where she leads a team of young and vibrant individuals in creatively addressing Nigeria's food insecurity challenges. She is a social impact entrepreneur with a keen interest in agriculture and the crop production and food processing value chain. Prior to founding Rashak Farms, Rahmah is passionate about providing economic opportunities to women, youth, and persons living with disabilities (PWLD) by empowering and financially including them throughout her professional career in the non-profit sector and entrepreneurship.

Richard Sam
Regional Program Officer at the Sustainable Development Institute

Richard Sam


Richard is the Regional Program Officer at Sustainable Development Institute. He is an experienced environmentalist and natural resource governance and management practitioner with more than 9 years of experience in managing natural resources, conducting environmental social impact assessments, community engagement, climate justice, environmental justice, and natural resource policy on land and forests. He is knowledgeable in assessing the social and environmental impact and risks of large-scale agricultural projects and developing mitigation measures to reduce the risks through stakeholder engagement through free, prior, and informed consent.

Solomon Ifeanyi Nathaniel
Head of Organisation of Unique Foundation The Gambia

Solomon Nathaniel


Solomon is the Founder and Director of Unique Foundation The Gambia, an organization that works with vulnerable people and communities in The Gambia. Solomon is aware that people with little or no education are held back at every stage of life. His goal is to see The Gambia and beyond, where every child and unschooled young adult can read and write. Solomon is also the CEO of 'Intown Fresh Farm' a one-stop for all fresh farm produce. He is a member of the Africa Youth Commission, Young African Leaders Initiative, Theirworld Global Ambassador for education, World Literacy Foundation Ambassador, and the Acumen Academy West Africa Fellowship.

Theo Boateng
Director of Operations, Expansion and Partnerships at Saha Global

Theo Boateng


Theo is the Director of Operations, Expansion, and Partnerships at Saha Global, an organization that brings the cleanest water to the hardest-to-reach people. Theo leads the development and implementation of operational structures and systems that support growth. He also leads program expansion and external relations with government agencies and civil society organisations in the WASH sector. Theo has nearly a decade of experience in supporting start-ups and early-stage for-profit and non-profit organisations to build the necessary operational systems that accelerate their growth.

Ujuaku Akukwe
Founder and Creative Director of  Eastern Nigeria Film and Arts Initiative



Ujuaku is the Founder and Creative Director of the Eastern Nigeria Film & Arts Initiative, an organization that invests in film and media training, as well as entertainment in Nigeria with a specific focus on Southeast Nigeria, grooming young talents to create more authentic African stories. She is an experienced Indigenous Storyteller and Curator who uses film as a tool to educate people. Prior to this organization, Ujuaku has held various leadership roles within the field of filmmaking. Her work has earned her multiple international awards in documentary filmmaking and she is a recipient of the California State Legislature Assembly for her use of film in community engagement. Ujuaku is an alumna of the New York Film Academy.

Wande Adams
Co-Founder and CEO of The Bulb Africa



Wande is the Co-Founder and CEO of The Bulb Africa, a tech talent incubator that is strategically designed to close the skill gap in Africa’s job market. The organization creates employment opportunities, helps start-ups scale, and fosters the development of young Africans into tech experts. Prior to starting The Bulb, Wande held leadership roles at Verizon and Vencore as a US government contractor. Wande is a graduate of the University of Baltimore and holds a Master's degree in forensic accounting from the University of Maryland UC.

Yatta Sackie Wapoe
County Health Officer at Montserrado County Health Team



Yatta is the County Health Officer of the Montserrado County Health Team, a government organization that manages the healthcare delivery services for the most populous county in Liberia. In this role, Yatta advocates for and serves the most marginalized population, ensuring access to quality healthcare services and responding to diseases of epidemic potential. Before her current role, Yatta held various leadership roles within the field of healthcare. She holds an MD in general medicine from the University of Liberia and an MPH in Health Policy from Cuttington University.

Yawa Hansen-Quao
Founder of Leading Ladies' Network



Yawa is the Founder of the Leading Ladies' Network, a nonprofit organization that nurtures female leadership and social entrepreneurship in Africa for over a decade. Prior to founding this organization, Yawa has held various leadership roles within the field of empowering women. Through the Leading Ladies Network, Yawa has fostered an ecosystem of 12,000 African women and girls who have ambitious goals, strong character, and resolve to serve as impactful leaders in business, civil society, and government.