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Our Team

Boards

Chairs

Dr. Mitch Besser – Interim Chair, m2m SA; Founder, m2m

An obstetrician and gynaecologist, Mitch’s career has been dedicated to the public health needs of women. In 1999, he joined the University of Cape Town, assisting with the development of services for pregnant women living with HIV to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT). It was through that work he recognised a need for an education and psychosocial support programme that would help PMTCT services achieve the best medical and social outcomes, and founded m2m in 2001. Among the many awards Mitch has received are the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship and the U.S. Presidential Citizen’s Award.

Colin Freund – Chair, m2m U.S.; CEO of MODRA Pharmaceuticals

Colin has more than 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, with a primary focus in oncology. Prior to being appointed CEO of MODRA Pharmaceuticals, which specialises in oral chemotherapy, Colin was CEO of QUE Oncology, Inc., a company focused on cancer-related therapies. Colin also held senior business and corporate development roles at Transgene SA, Agennix Inc., and GPC Biotech AG, all of which were involved with developing novel oncology therapeutics. Earlier in his career, Colin was a project manager at the Boston Consulting Group in the healthcare and high technology practice areas.

Carl Stewart – Chair, m2m U.K.; Global Head of Platform Origination, HSBC

A finance industry professional, Carl is currently the Global Head of Platform Origination at HSBC in London. Previously, he served as Chief Operating Officer of the European Business of Och-Ziff Management Europe Limited, a U.S.-based asset management firm. He also held the senior leadership positions at K2 Advisors Limited and Zurich Capital Markets’ business in Europe and Asia. For the first 14 years of his career, Carl worked at JP Morgan in a variety of roles in investment banking and capital markets.

Laura Bartlett – Vice Chair, m2m U.S.

Laura is the retired CFO/COO of the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4As), the nonprofit trade association for the U.S. advertising industry. She joined the 4As in 2008 from the global advertising network FCB, where she served as CFO for the New York office and later CFO of FCB Worldwide. During her 14-year tenure, Laura was involved in international acquisitions and overseas operations. Earlier, she spent 14 years in financial management at Johnson & Johnson. Laura is also a board director for the nonprofit Gilda’s Club NYC that provides free, comprehensive cancer support. She earned a BS in Accounting from Drexel University and an MBA from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Carolina Manhusen Schwab – Vice Chair, m2m U.K.

Carolina is an economist with experience in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors. She began her career at the Inter-American Development Bank, working on women’s development and microenterprise projects. She later joined Merrill Lynch Investment Banking where she was involved in mergers & acquisitions in the energy and power sectors. She also founded two businesses — a search firm and a social enterprise clothing line that employed vulnerable women in Argentina — and has volunteered with numerous organisations in Europe and South America. Of Swedish and Argentinian descent, Carolina speaks five languages and has two Master’s degrees in Economics and in Development Studies.

Members

Leslie Brunner – Chief People Officer, Devoted Health

Leslie is the Chief People Officer at Devoted Health, a Medicare Advantage health plan that is redefining the way care is delivered, paid for, and experienced. Prior to joining Devoted, Leslie served as the President of MiniLuxe, a company transforming nail care by integrating technology, data analytics and career pathing, while offering an elevated client experience. Before that, Leslie was on the founding team of the healthcare technology company, athenahealth, serving in a variety of senior leadership roles. She obtained a BA from Colorado College and a Master’s Degree in Health Administration from Washington University.

Dr. Lynne Cornelissen – Research Clinician, Stellenbosch University's Family Centre for Research with Ubuntu

Lynne serves as a Research Clinician at Stellenbosch University’s Family Centre for Research with Ubuntu (FAMCRU), based at Tygerberg Hospital, where she is involved with infectious diseases clinical research related to HIV, TB, Pregnancy, Hepatitis, and Cardiovascular strategies in HIV. Prior to joining FAMCRU, Lynne spent five years at Khayelitsha District Hospital managing complex HIV and TB patients. A Cape Town native who is passionate about HIV medicine, Lynne received her medical degree from Stellenbosch University and her diploma in HIV Management with distinction from the College of Medicine.

Dr. Tim Evans – Medical Doctor

Tim is guided by his belief that “prevention is the medicine of the millennium.” Early in his career, he established primary health clinics in rural areas of Zimbabwe recovering from civil war. After acquiring post-graduate qualifications in general practice, anaesthetics, obstetrics, and gynaecology, he established a private general practice for women and children in London, followed by the first fully integrated practice incorporating conventional, complementary, and alternative healthcare. He was appointed as Apothecary to HM The Queen and The Royal Households of London in 2003.

Peggy Grueninger - Head of Corporate Donations and Philanthropy, F. Hoffmann-La Roche

For Peggy, philanthropy is more than a job—it is a responsibility. She encourages companies to give back to communities where they operate and live, and to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Peggy has driven impactful initiatives across Roche’s four main philanthropic areas: Humanitarian & Social, Science & Education, Community & Environment, and Arts & Culture. She has brought a particular focus to supporting education and health with local partners in South Africa, Kenya, India, and across Latin America. Previously, Peggy held senior positions in clinical trials management at Roche. She studied Leadership in Philanthropy at the Boston College Wallace E. Graduate School of Management, and is a member of the Swiss South Africa Chamber of Commerce and the Swiss Africa Business circle

Colleen Hancock – Advisor and Mentor

Colleen is an accomplished General Manager/COO/Corporate VP, and a collaborative and innovative leader. She has 20 years global consumer internet/technology experience with BabyCenter and Johnson & Johnson (J&J), and 15 prior years in global retail strategy with Neiman Marcus and Duty Free Shoppers (DFS). She has a history of success in the consumer services industry on and offline, with a track record of delivering results for the business and understanding how to evolve with ever-changing technology and generational needs. Colleen recently left her roles as COO BabyCenter and VP Marketing Accelerator at J&J to pursue new personal and professional growth opportunities. She also serves on the board of Azlo, a financial technology company, and advises MAMA (Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action), which she co-founded.

Carolyn Hardy – CEO, Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation

Carolyn is the Chief Executive Officer of the Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation, overseeing outreach for Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia in Australia and the U.S. in support of eradication of obstetric fistula and empowerment of women to regain their roles in families and communities. Prior to Hamlin, she worked with the United Nations for twelve years in senior leadership roles including: private sector relations at the UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women, Global Head of Private Sector Relations at UN Women in New York, Deputy Director of UNICEF’s Global Private Funding & Partnerships Division in Geneva, and CEO of UNICEF Australia. Carolyn has also served as a Director on the Global Board of Amnesty International and Director of ChildFund Australia.

Andrea Hartley – Founder and CEO, Skating Panda

As an entrepreneur, Andrea started her professional journey as a girl helping her mother run a business from the kitchen. She is Founder and CEO of Skating Panda, the strategy and communications consultancy which drives performance through purpose. She is also Co-founder of Mum & You, the ethical parenting e-commerce company that creates products designed for mothers by mothers. Other start up experience spans sport, charity, and politics—the successful London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Bid, the Women’s Equality Party, and Reach to Teach, an education charity. She is a Board Director of the food poverty social enterprise, Maymessy, and a Mentor at Unreasonable. She holds an undergraduate degree from Oxford University and Masters from the Universities of Salamanca and Exeter.

Marigo Kehoe – Executive Producer

Marigo currently serves as the Executive Producer of The Wheel of Time, Amazon Studios’ highly anticipated epic fantasy series. Previously, she was Co-founder and Managing Director of Left Bank Pictures, one of the most successful drama production companies in the U.K. Under her auspices, Left Bank produced the award-winning series The Crown for Netflix, and other multiple award-winning drama and comedy series for HBO, BBC, ITV1, Channel 4, E4, Sky, Starz, and Amazon. Marigo was also Head of Production for Drama, Comedy, and Film at Granada, overseeing production of the Oscar and BAFTA award-winning film The Queen and many other award-winning series and films. She has more than 30 years of experience in film and television production and received the Women in Film and Television Business Award in 2015.

Keith Kibirango - Head of Africa Philanthropy, Save the Children UK

Keith has more than twenty years of social impact and fundraising experience in the UK, Europe and internationally. He is a leading global philanthropy and wealth expert who has raised more than £30 million in donations for socially focused causes across Africa, Europe and internationally. Keith is a British Ugandan lawyer, having studied his first law degree at Makerere University, followed by a master’s degree at the London School of Economics. He provided legal aid at FIDA(U), Uganda’s largest legal aid clinic and served as Director of the Uganda Law Society. Keith also held several leadership positions at leading UK charities such as Ark Schools, Tommy’s, and JUSTICE. As Head of Africa Philanthropy at Save the Children UK, Keith created a philanthropic programme that directly connects with African donors – the first of its kind for any international charity. He has revolutionised African philanthropy and raised more than £12 million in just 24 months at Save the Children.

Ariel Knowles – Finance Professional & Consultant

Ariel has spent her career working in finance roles in the U.S., Hong Kong, and London. Most recently, she was Senior Finance Manager for Interior Define, a Chicago-based omni-channel home furnishings retailer. Prior roles include Investment Banker within UBS Investment Bank’s Industrials and Consumer Products & Retail groups in Chicago and London, respectively, and Supervisory Analyst with Sanford C. Bernstein in Hong Kong. Ariel is involved in various other philanthropic causes and educational initiatives and institutions, including the Chicago Children’s Theatre, Chicago’s Field Museum, and Western Reserve Academy.

Derek Lubner – Philanthropist

Derek is the Marketing Director at Innovate Services Ltd, a school caterer operating in fifty schools and colleges in the U.K. He has deep roots in South Africa, having gone to school in Johannesburg and served as a partner of All Brand No Flakes, a marketing and branding company based in Cape Town. In addition to his longstanding commitment to m2m, he serves on the boards of the Community Chest and the South African National Youth Orchestra, and runs his parents’ foundation, MAID (Make an Immediate Difference).

Musa Makhunga – Founding Managing Director, HR Matters Holdings

Musa is a South African Businessman based in Durban who was part of the cofounding team of mothers2mothers, back in the very early days.  He is the founder of HR Matters (Pty) Ltd, a Strategic Human Resources Leadership Consultancy (www.hrmatters.co.za) and HRMP Logistics (Pty) Ltd (www.hrmprop.co.za) which provides warehousing and distribution services operating out of Dube Tradeport, a special economic zone in the King Shaka International Airport precinct.  A true social entrepreneur as well, Musa has recently launched vOICe vision Africa, an innovative initiative which empowers blind people to see with sound (vOICevision.co.za).  Musa is married to Nozipho with whom they have three young adult children: Asande (daughter), Mpilo (son), and Sandiso (son).

Nicolás Martin – Partner, Herbert Smith Freehills

A recognised mergers & acquisitions and private equity lawyer, Nicolás is a partner of the international law firm Herbert Smith Freehills (HSF) where he is a member of its Global Council. He has 30 years of experience advising on international transactions for a broad range of clients, including funds, banks, and corporates. Before joining HSF, Nicolás was a partner at Linklaters and KPMG.

Daphne Metland – Director, Thrive

Daphne runs Thrive: words that change lives, a multi award-winning, international health editorial agency that supplies tailor-made health content using behaviour change principles. She has developed behaviour change health messaging programmes delivered by mobile phone for projects in Bangladesh, China, India, Mexico, South Africa, and Uganda that reach more than eight million people, as well as for the Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action (MAMA) reaching 3.2 million people and the South Africa National Department of Health. She also serves as Editorial Director, International, Maternal and Child Health for the pregnancy and parenting digital resource, BabyCenter. Daphne is a member of the Royal Society of Medicine, the Association of Medical Journalists, and the Guild of Health Writers.

Herschelle Milford – Organisational Development Consultant

Born and raised in a copper mining town in Namaqualand, South Africa, Herschelle is passionate about social justice and the power and strength of people to facilitate social change. She has experience in the challenges and strengths of partnerships and collaborations. After serving 18 years as the CEO of a nonprofit, Surplus People Project, Herschelle stepped down in 2017 to explore new opportunities such as mentoring youth, and accompanying community-based organisations and platforms for sharing experience and knowledge. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree and a Higher Diploma in Education from the University of the Western Cape. She serves on several NGO boards and volunteers at a variety of institutions.

Terry D. Peigh – Senior Vice President, Managing Director, Interpublic Group (IPG)

Terry serves as a senior corporate executive overseeing the relationship with some of the largest clients at IPG, a global leader in modern marketing solutions. Prior to joining IPG, Terry held senior leadership positions at global advertising networks Foote Cone and Belding (FCB) Worldwide and True North Communications. Employing his international and marketing background, Terry devotes some of his outside time to various NGOs working in international social development, including advising on how best to use modern-day marketing principles to advance the acceptance of health practices in the developing world.

Meena Ravella – Advisor & Consultant

Meena has over 20 years of experience in the consumer internet, and currently advises several Silicon Valley companies. Meena most recently was the Vice President of Business Development for Shutterfly, whose mission is to help the world share life’s joy by helping people share their memories. Prior to Shutterfly, Meena headed up marketing partnerships for eBay, with a focus on the largest consumer websites, electronics manufacturers, and wireless carriers. Prior to eBay, Meena worked at NBC Internet, Boston Consulting Group, and JP Morgan Chase.

Mojisola Rotibi - Consultant

Moji has more than 20 years of experience in the financial services industry, including positions at Investec Bank Ltd., Commerzbank AG, and as the chief executive of Ascent Asset Managers. As Co-founder and Managing Partner at Biovest LLC, she brought a class III medical device to trial in South Africa for kidney transplants involving HIV. Moji believes that we all must strive to be humanitarians without prejudices since we are all equally vulnerable to the vagaries of life, including diseases.

Kate Schachern – Partner, Rabin Martin

Kate is a Partner at Rabin Martin, a global health strategy firm based in New York, overseeing large-scale, global health and health access projects around the world. Kate works closely with the private and public sectors on effective strategy, programming, partnerships, and communications in a number of key areas, including access to medicines, corporate responsibility, public affairs and policy, and stakeholder engagement. As Managing Director, she also leads the firm’s Business Development, Finance, Operations, and Marketing & Communications. She holds a BA in Journalism from George Washington University.

Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela, PhD, MMFI – CEO, South African Health Products Regulatory Authority

Boitumelo is CEO of the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) and a fellow of the African Leadership Initiative. Prior to joining SAHPRA, she managed a biotechnology incubator at The Innovation Hub Management Company. She was also a McKinsey & Company Leadership Fellow for two years and a Senior Researcher at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). Boitumelo holds a Ph.D. (Biochemistry) and an MSc in Management Finance and Investment, and is the author of scientific publications, review articles, and book chapters. She sits on a number of scientific advisory committees and Board of Directors, and is involved in leadership projects, including the African Union Strategy for Health Research and a WHO Expert Panel on scaling health Innovations in Africa.

Non-voting Members

Frank Beadle de Palomo – President & Chief Executive Officer, m2m

Frank has more than 30 years experience in the global health community that includes significant achievements in HIV prevention, domestic and global care, research, policy, and advocacy. Before joining m2m as CEO in 2012, Frank was Senior Vice President and Director of the Global Health, Population, and Nutrition Group at FHI 360. Previously, Frank was Senior Vice President and Director of the Academy for Educational Development (AED), where he re-established the organisation as a leader in global AIDS programmes. He also created and directed the National Council of La Raza ‘s Center for Health Promotion in the U.S.

Robin Allinson Smalley – Co-founder and Chief Connector, m2m U.S.

Robin enjoyed an award-winning career as a television producer/director/writer before realising that the legacy she wanted to leave had nothing to do with entertainment. Turning her attention to the nonprofit world, she became the Executive Director of The Media Project, working to incorporate healthy messages around sexuality and reproductive health into television. From there, she moved her family to South Africa to become m2m’s first Executive Director. Based in m2m’s Los Angeles office, Robin supports U.S. fundraising, partnership development, advocacy, and global communications.

Tom Kagerer – m2m South Africa Board Observer; Investment Director, LGT Venture Philanthropy

As Investment Director at LGT Venture Philanthropy (LGT VP), Tom deploys philanthropic growth capital to organisations and companies with effective, innovative, and scalable solutions to social and environmental challenges. In his role, he covers the whole life-cycle of philanthropic investments, from sourcing all the way through to exit. Previously, he served as Head of Impact Management at LGT VP and LGT Lightstone, and Head of Talent at LGT VP. Earlier in his career, Tom worked with Heart Social Investments, a social enterprise incubator in Cape Town, South Africa, to support social enterprises addressing the needs of low-income customers. He also spent nine years with BMW in Germany and the U.K. Tom holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of Applied Science of Munich, Germany.

Officers of the Corporation

Chad D. Rathner – Secretary, m2m South Africa; Chief Operating Officer, m2m

Chad brings more than 20 years of experience in the global health community and private sector. Before joining m2m as COO in 2014, Chad was the Deputy Country Director at FHI 360 Zambia, as well as Chief of Party on USAID’s flagship HIV and AIDS Prevention programme in Zambia. In addition, from 2007-2010, Chad was the Academy for Educational Development (AED) Director of the Local Partners Capacity Building Program, a USAID-funded organisation development project. Chad’s position with m2m utilises his expertise in developing solutions for a wide range of HIV and AIDS, family planning, maternal and child health, education, public/private partnership, and capacity building programmes.

Muhammad Salie – Treasurer, m2m U.S.; Director, Finance and Administration, m2m

Muhammad is a Chartered Accountant who has over 17 years of experience in the Finance sector. He started his professional journey at the accountancy firm Mazars, before moving to insurance giant Old Mutual. After Old Mutual, he joined the International Partnership on Microbicides (IPM), an international NGO which develops HIV prevention products and other reproductive health technologies for women. After ten years, he became Director of Accounting for IPM South Africa, a role which included dealing with complex international donors including USAID. In 2019, Muhammad joined m2m as a Finance Manager after which he transitioned into his current role as m2m’s Finance and Administration Director.

Sarah Sheldon – Secretary, m2m U.S.; Senior Grants and Compliance Manager, m2m

Sarah is a programme and grants management professional with more than 13 years of experience in international health and development. Currently, she serves as the Senior Grants & Compliance Manager for m2m. She is responsible for ensuring compliance with the requirements of m2m’s donor and funder agreements, and building the capacity of project management teams around compliance. She also plays a major role in organisational policy development and managing the governance of m2m’s local branches. Sarah previously worked with FHI 360, including as Regional Grants and Contracts Officer for West Africa based in Accra, Ghana from 2015 to 2017. She holds a Master’s in Public Health from George Washington University.

Senior Management Team

Frank Beadle de Palomo – President & Chief Executive Officer

Frank has more than 30 years experience in the global health community that includes significant achievements in HIV prevention, domestic and global care, research, policy, and advocacy. Before joining m2m as CEO in 2012, Frank was Senior Vice President and Director of the Global Health, Population, and Nutrition Group at FHI 360. Previously, Frank was Senior Vice President and Director of the Academy for Educational Development (AED), where he re-established the organisation as a leader in global AIDS programmes. He also created and directed the National Council of La Raza ‘s Center for Health Promotion in the U.S.

Meet Frank

Chad D. Rathner – Chief Operating Officer, m2m; Secretary, m2m South Africa

Chad brings more than 20 years of experience in the global health community and private sector. Before joining m2m as COO in 2014, Chad was the Deputy Country Director at FHI 360 Zambia, as well as Chief of Party on USAID’s flagship HIV and AIDS Prevention programme in Zambia. In addition, from 2007-2010, Chad was the Academy for Educational Development (AED) Director of the Local Partners Capacity Building Program, a USAID-funded organisation development project. Chad’s position with m2m utilises his expertise in developing solutions for a wide range of HIV and AIDS, family planning, maternal and child health, education, public/private partnership, and capacity building programmes.

Meet Chad

Delia Burnett – Director of Institutional Partnerships

Delia spent her early career providing direct patient care to vulnerable populations in both the US and Ethiopia with Planned Parenthood, New York Legal Assistance Group, Worldwide Orphans Foundation, and Mount Sinai’s Human Rights Program. She has her Masters in Public Health from Mount Sinai School of Medicine with a focus in Global Health. In 2014, Delia shifted her focus to partnerships and development at Last Mile Health and most recently, UNICEF USA. Currently, Delia is responsible for creating new partnerships in North America.

Jennifer Coffey - Director of Strategic Partnerships

Jennifer brings 20 years of experience in the non-profit sector specialising in strategic partnerships, business development, leadership, fundraising and relationship management. Jennifer joined m2m in 2020 from Save the Children where she spent 6 years working with and subsequently leading a team of partnership experts across a portfolio of multilateral, bilateral and trust & foundation partners. Her team drove partnership approaches for the Save the Children global movement, ensuring Save the Children’s role as a partner of choice. Prior to this, Jennifer worked for various beyond profit organisations in the UK, Australia and Ireland. She has a Masters in Voluntary Sector and NGO Management from Cass Business School. At m2m, she is responsible for driving strategic partnerships with multilateral and bilateral organisations, trusts and foundations, as well as the private sector.

La Chenna Cromer – Director, Business Development

La Chenna brings 20 years of experience in public health and business development in the United States, African, and Asian development markets. She comes to m2m from FHI 360 where she served as the Associate Director for the East and Southern Africa portfolio. During her tenure at FHI 360, La Chenna brought in more than $900,000,000 from U.S. and EU governments, pharmaceutical corporations, and private foundations. Prior to FHI 360, she focused on health communication research to inform campaigns for underserved populations. La Chenna uses her passion for women’s rights, empowerment, and improved access to health care to expand m2m’s global footprint through restricted and unrestricted funding.

Emma France – Global Development and Strategic Engagement Director

Emma established the European office of m2m in 2011. In her current role, she leads m2m’s global development and strategic engagement strategy, and takes responsibility for shaping our public engagement and advocacy. She holds day-to-day responsibility for m2m’s European and North American operations.  Emma began her career as a project finance lawyer at Allen & Overy. She has served in various board roles in national and local charities, including as Vice-Chair of Amnesty International U.K. and as a trustee of the Amnesty International U.K. Charitable Trust.  She currently sits on the Advisory Board for Gucci’s Chime for Change and is a Trustee for CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably). She has also served as a Visiting Fellow at Cass Business School. 

Dillon Mann – Global Communications Director

Dillon is a communications professional with experience across the not-for-profit, technology, policy and professional services sectors. Prior to joining m2m, he was Communications & Campaigns Director at the World Wide Web Foundation, an organisation that ensures everyone, everywhere can get online and use the web to improve their lives. Leading a global communications team from Cape Town, he helped the organisation to triple in both size and impact. Prior to this, he served as a director at a leading U.K. communications consultancy, working with diverse clients ranging from government departments to law firms.  At m2m, Dillon is responsible for the development, integration, and implementation of m2m’s global communications strategy across three continents.

Gillian Mthandi – Human Resources Director

Gillian Mthandi is an HR generalist with more than 20 years of experience in human resource management. She spent 10 years of her career working as an HR Manager for various corporations in South Africa. Almost a decade ago she made the decision to move into the nonprofit sector, joining m2m. Her first role within m2m was to provide strategic HR support to the field operations in Southern Africa. She was later promoted to HR Director where she leads the global HR strategy for the organisation.

Meet Gillian

Muhammad Salie – Director, Finance and Administration

Muhammad is a Chartered Accountant who has over 17 years of experience in the Finance sector. He started his professional journey at the accountancy firm Mazars, before moving to insurance giant Old Mutual. After Old Mutual, he joined the International Partnership on Microbicides (IPM), an international NGO which develops HIV prevention products and other reproductive health technologies for women. After ten years, he became Director of Accounting for IPM South Africa, a role which included dealing with complex international donors including USAID. In 2019, Muhammad joined m2m as a Finance Manager after which he transitioned into his current role as m2m’s Finance and Administration Director.

Dr. Kathrin Schmitz – Director, Programmes and Technical Support

A Medical Doctor with an MBA, Kathrin has extensive clinical, research, and technical expertise in programme design and implementation. Early in her career, she specialised in paediatric clinical practice and research, and oversaw the accreditation of informal Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres across South Africa. Since joining m2m in 2005, Kathrin has played a leading role in the organisation’s programmatic and geographical expansion. In her current role, she leads programme innovation aligned with organisational strategic objectives, and drives the conceptualisation and design, implementation and scale-up of m2m’s rapidly expanding portfolio of programmes, while overseeing technical quality.

Meet Kathrin

Rebecca Silver Fisher – Director, North America

Rebecca joins m2m from buildOn, where she served as Vice President for Philanthropy and oversaw global philanthropy and fundraising strategy. She succeeded in building and managing relationships with some of the biggest companies in the U.S., and helped to drive a $20M organisational budget, while also recruiting and managing leadership boards. Prior to buildOn, Rebecca held senior roles at the American Lung Association, and the ALS Association, where she helped to build new revenue streams and shift perceptions for these blue-chip charities. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of California, Los Angeles, and is passionate about gender equity, women’s rights, social justice, education, global development, public health, politics, and the arts. Rebecca leads m2m’s North American resource mobilisation strategy and is responsible for the teams based in New York and Los Angeles. She is also responsible for elevating m2m’s profile in North America.

Country Leadership

Priscilla Banda – Country Director, Zambia

For the past three years, Priscilla has served as our Country Representative, focused on resource mobilisation for the Zambia programme and oversight of our USAID SAFE start up and implementation. In addition to her work with m2m, Priscilla brings a wealth of experience to this role – she has been working for U.S. Government-funded programmes for over 22 years in Zambia’s health sector. Before becoming a Country Representative for m2m Zambia, she served as Country Director for number of organisations, including the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation (EGPAF) and National Alliance for State and Territorial Aids Directors (NASTAD). We’re pleased to have Priscilla in her new role and providing direction to sustain and grow the Zambia program.

Ilda Kuleba – Country Director, Mozambique

Ilda has over 14 years’ experience working in public health and joined m2m from PSI Mozambique where she served as Director of Programmes, implementing a family planning project spanning six provinces. Previously Ilda worked with PSI in Angola as a Chief of Party for an HIV key populations project. She also has experience working for USAID and in the private sector. Ilda holds a Bachelor’s degree from American University in Washington, D.C., and a Master’s degree from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. In her role as Country Director for m2m in Mozambique, Ilda is responsible for the implementation and strategic leadership of the programme in the country, while ensuring alignment and integration with Ministry of Health plans.

Respeace Mgawe - Senior Capacity Building Advisor, Tanzania

Respeace is a public health professional, with more than 15 years of experience in designing and implementing public health interventions focused on strengthening quality improvement (QI), monitoring and evaluation (M&E), and research and learning systems towards comprehensive HIV/AIDS care. Respeace has a background in nursing, counselling, and business administration and his extensive experience includes: health supply chains; reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health (RMNCH); and integrated management of childhood illnesses.

Dr. Betty Mirembe – Country Director, Uganda

Betty is a medical doctor with postgraduate training in public health. She has 15 years of medical field experience, 12 of which have been in the implementation of diverse programmes in Uganda, including HIV/AIDS care and treatment. Prior to joining m2m, Betty served as the eMTCT/Paediatric HIV Programme Manager at the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), where she provided technical assistance to Uganda’s national ministry of Health in the design and strategic implementation of PMTCT, early infant diagnosis (EID), paediatric HIV testing, care and treatment programmes as well as paediatric TB programmes, across all sites in the country. Before CHAI, Betty was a Technical Advisor for PMTCT at the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundations (EGPAF), and a Coordinator of Studies and Programmes, respectively, implemented by the Makerere University-John Hopkins University Collaboration and the UN World Food Programme.

Mpolokeng Mohloai – Country Director, Lesotho

Mpolokeng is a dedicated, committed, and goal-oriented healthcare professional with a successful background in clinical training and education, and programme management. She holds a Master’s Degree in Community Health Nursing, plus an Honours Degree in Nursing, specialising in healthcare management, primary healthcare, and HIV and AIDS care. Mpolokeng joined m2m in 2008 as the Regional Manager in Lesotho and then moved to Head Office in Cape Town, South Africa, to work as the Training and Education Officer. She returned to Lesotho as the Programme and M&E Manager, and was promoted to Senior Programme Manager in 2016 and to Country Director in 2020.

Charles Muruka – Programme Specialist, Kenya

Charles is a career public health specialist who joined m2m Kenya in September 2013. His first role at m2m was as the Kenya Mentor Mother Program (KMMP) Manager. In that role, Charles acted as the liaison between m2m and Kenya’s Ministry of Health on the integration of m2m’s Mentor Mother Model into the national health system. In his current position as Programme Specialist, his responsibilities include overseeing m2m Kenya’s operations and project implementation while acting as the focal person with partners, funders, and other stakeholders in the country. Prior to joining m2m Kenya, Charles worked with Save the Children International for its health and nutrition programme in Kenya.

Dr. Francisco Ngongo - Country Director, Angola

Francisco has a PhD in Peace and Development studies and has over 15 years of professional experience in the area of human development, peacebuilding, and human rights, with special attention to the rights of women, girls, and children. For the past 11 years, he has worked with international NGOs, United Nations agencies, and academic institutions where, among others, he has been involved in the development and management, implementation and evaluation of projects related to reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health (RMNCH), as well as prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT). Francisco has experience in team building, management, and training development. He speaks English, French, and Portuguese and has extensive experience in management and partner/donor relations.

Yvonne Prempeh-Ferguson – Technical Specialist, Ghana

Yvonne is a development practitioner with more than 20 years of direct implementation and management experience of varied health sector portfolios. She has also led multi-sector projects in education, child protection, youth empowerment, and livelihoods. Through her work in multiple countries, Yvonne has gained significant cross-cultural experience and has built strategic relationships with UN and international agencies, national and local governments, and community-based organisations. She earned an MPhil in Economics and Politics in Development from Cambridge University (U.K.) and an MA in Development Economics from Dalhousie University (Canada). Yvonne describes herself as a passionate advocate for children’s rights and for improving the lives and well-being of vulnerable women.

Spokeswomen

Wilbroda Awuor Akuro – Kenya

Wilbroda’s journey to m2m started with her HIV diagnosis in 2015. Convinced that her positive status would be a death sentence for her and her child, she considered having an abortion. Luckily, she soon met with an m2m Mentor Mother who helped her understand that her baby could be born negative, and with the right medication she could live a long and healthy life. The hardest part was disclosing her status to her family. They isolated her and her self-esteem was reduced to zero. But that changed when she was employed by m2m as a Community Mentor Mother. She used what she learned to educate her family about HIV—and they started treating her like a human being again.

Meet Wilbroda

Teddy Atim – Namayingo District, Uganda

Teddy learned she was living with HIV when she was 20 years old and expecting her first child. The devastating news strained her relationship with her husband, who tested HIV-negative. Fortunately, m2m Mentor Mothers at her clinic educated Teddy and her husband about staying healthy as a discordant couple and protecting their baby from infection. After seeing that it is possible to break the cycle of HIV infection, Teddy decided she wanted to become a Mentor Mother. She is happily married and now has three children who are all HIV-free. She is proud to be a driver of change in her community and earn a living so her family can have a bright future.

Meet Teddy

Relebohile Leoatha – Lesotho

Relebohile became a wife and mother when she was only 15 years old. Like many women, she got her first HIV test when she went to the clinic for antenatal care—and found out she was positive. Her husband refused to be tested, but when he fell ill they discovered that he too was living with HIV. Though she returned to school, she soon contracted TB, furthering the stigma and isolation she felt. But a few months later, Relebohile met m2m and her life changed. Now a Mentor Mother running a site in Lesotho, she is confident in her status, and is able to give hope to other women and help empower them to get the healthcare they need.

Meet Relebohile

Nobuntu Ma Awu - Khayelitsha, South Africa

Nobuntu Ma-Awu first met m2m in 2009 when she was pregnant with her first child. After finding out that she was living with HIV, Mentor Mothers supported her to ensure she gave birth to an HIV-free baby. She is now the mother of two children, both free from HIV. Nobuntu joined m2m as a Mentor Mother in 2013. As a Site Coordinator, she provides health education and support to pregnant women and new mothers, ensuring that those who are HIV-negative know how to keep themselves negative, and that those who are living with HIV are started on treatment; that they adhere to their medication and come to all their appointments at the clinic. Nobuntu also facilitates support groups for mothers living with HIV and working with the Community Mentor Mothers, she follows up on women who miss their appointments to ensure that they are retained in care.

Velna Malobola – Soshanguve, South Africa

Velna first met m2m in 2008, at age 18, when she became pregnant with her first child and tested HIV-positive. She was afraid to disclose to her family, and when they found out they discriminated against her. If it weren’t for the m2m Mentor Mothers at her clnic, she would have been completely alone. Mentor Mothers supported her to start treatment, and educated her about protecting her baby from infection and keeping herself healthy. She joined m2m in 2012 as a Peer Mentor because she wanted to educate other adolescent girls and young women in her community about HIV and sexual and reproductive health, and support them to make healthy choices.

Meet Velna

Colile Mashaba – Mpumalanga, South Africa

Colile was diagnosed with HIV when she was just 19 years old and struggled to come to terms with her status. When she became pregnant a year later, she disclosed to her boyfriend who told her to terminate her pregnancy and left her to raise her child alone. Colile kept her HIV status secret from her family for fear they would reject her. When she heard in 2009 that m2m had opened in her Province of Mpumlanga, she was immediately attracted to its peer-to-peer approach and applied for a job as a Mentor Mother. m2m helped her finaly accept her status and disclose to her family. October 2019 marked 15 years since Colile discovered that she is living with HIV. She is happily married, and a proud mother to three busy, HIV-free sons.

Meet Colile

Cissy Mirembe – Luuka District, Uganda

Cissy discovered she was living with HIV during her first pregnancy, 12 years ago. Devastated by the news, she became very sick and thin. The youngest of two wives in a polygamous marriage, Cissy’s husband could not accept her status and removed her name from all his deeds and insurance policies. When Cissy heard m2m was hiring mothers living with HIV as Mentor Mothers, she applied so she could help other women suffering from discrimination. Cissy excelled, and was promoted to Programme Assistant, training other Mentor Mothers on how to deliver m2m services. She is now healthy, financially independent, and the mother of two children who are both HIV-free.

Meet Cissy

Jane Njoki - Mentor Mother Team Leader, Mathare, Kenya

Jane was diagnosed with HIV in 1991. When she was told that she was living with HIV, Jane feared for her life. 29 years ago, there were very few counselling services in Kenya and stigma was at its highest. People did not want to shake her hands, and she even had separate utensils at home. When Jane learned about mothers2mothers she applied for a job as a Mentor Mother Team Leader and it has been an amazing journey since then. Through her employment, and working with m2m’s clients, Jane has slowly gained her confidence back. Now she can provide for her family and also help educate her children.

Irene Nkosi – Ekangala, South Africa

When Irene found out she was pregnant and HIV-positive in 2007, she thought it was the end of her world.  She attended a PMTCT (prevention of mother-to-child transmission) programme, but was not given much information and felt scared and alone.  It wasn’t until she was hired as an m2m Site Coordinator at the Dark City Clinic in Pretoria in 2008 that she finally received support and education about HIV, and learned how to stay healthy and protect babies from HIV transmission.  She now has two children who are both negative.

Meet Irene

Limpho Nteko – Marabeng, Berea, Lesotho

Limpho Nteko was just 21 years old when she discovered that she was HIV-positive. Pregnant with her first child, Limpho struggled to accept her condition. Adhering to treatment came with its own set of challenges and she unfortunately lost her baby when she was just three weeks old. In 2013, pregnant with her second child, Limpho met m2m at her local clinic. The Mentor Mothers supported her and encouraged to take her treatment regularly. A year later Limpho applied to be a Mentor Mother and has since built a successful career in the public health sector in Lesotho. She now manages 84 Mentor Mothers across 16 health facilities. She is also a proud mother to two young children, both of whom are HIV-free.

Meet Limpho

Patrons and Ambassadors

mothers2mothers (m2m) is grateful to these inspiring supporters who have joined us to make noise and raise funds to end HIV and help create healthy, thriving families and communities across Africa. m2m Patrons promote our work globally, putting the spotlight on health and social challenges facing African women and families. m2m Ambassadors amplify our messages by promoting campaigns and spreading the word.

Patrons

Annie Lennox, OBE – Singer-Songwriter, Human Rights Activist

“It is an absolute honour and privilege to be able to contribute to supporting mothers2mothers, whose outstanding work has transformed the lives of almost 1.5 million HIV-positive mothers across nine countries in sub-Saharan Africa to date. With their visionary and innovative Mentor Mother Model, the m2m methodology is a gold standard for the education and support of mothers living with HIV. While one in three pregnant women are HIV-positive in Southern Africa, m2m’s work continues to be absolutely essential.”

Meet Annie Lennox

Salma Hayek Pinault – Academy Award Nominated Actress, Producer, Director

“One of the things I found very impressive about mothers2mothers when talking to women who have gone through the mothers2mothers process is that at some point they all find themselves feeling almost like dust – like nothing – like dust that the wind can come, blow away and they can disappear; because their situation is so bad and they are so helpless – they can see no future and many of them thought about taking their lives. Then this sisterhood comes along and supports them, and these particles of dust become mountains. These girls that thought they had absolutely no worth can look themselves in the mirror and realise that they have not only changed the lives of many women but have saved thousands of children. Thousands of lives. And this is literal; I spoke to one Mentor Mother and we calculated that over 7000 HIV-negative kids have been born into this world because of her work alone, her work preventing the mother passing HIV to her baby.”

Meet Salma Hayek Pinault

Candice Swanepoel — South African Supermodel & Fashion Entrepreneur

“Motherhood and South Africa are two of my passions, so serving as an m2m Patron is a perfect fit for me. I am inspired by the incredible work done every day across eight nations by the HIV-positive women mothers2mothers employs as Mentor Mothers to end childhood AIDS and help women and their families to stay healthy and thrive. I fully understand just how daunting it can be to be pregnant for the first time. But I can’t even imagine what it must be like to have to deal with a life-changing diagnosis like HIV at the same time. Thankfully mothers2mothers and its sisterhood of Mentor Mothers are there to support women and families to get the lifesaving medical care they need.”

Meet Candice Swanepoel

Samantha Bond – Actress

“I am honoured to be a Patron for mothers2mothers and to join the 1,600 Mentor Mothers that are committed to creating a generation free from HIV. I have had the opportunity to spend time with several Mentor Mothers since supporting m2m, and have continuously been astounded by their strength and resilience. It is clear that they are a force to be reckoned with and are advocates for change not just within their own communities, but beyond.”

Meet Samantha Bond

Rochelle Humes – Television & Radio Host

“I am so honoured to join mothers2mothers as a Patron, having seen their invaluable work first-hand in Kenya in 2016. There, HIV-positive mothers told me about the anxious wait of finding out if their child was HIV-free but also about the hope and support they were given by m2m. Mentor Mothers, like the lovely Dorcus whom I met, have walked in their shoes and stand shoulder to shoulder with them by sharing knowledge and experience. As a mum of two little girls, my priority is that they grow into healthy teenagers. I’m excited to represent these inspiring women who help other mothers make this hope a reality.”

Meet Rochelle Humes

Ambassadors

Christian Brassington - Actor

“It’s so exciting to join mothers2mothers as an official Ambassador. Over the past few years I have really enjoyed becoming a part of the m2m Family, from co-hosting The Big Quiz, reading at the Carols by Candlelight, attending their Winter Gala, to being on the Carols and Gala Host Committees. It’s been an inspiring journey getting to know m2m’s work in more detail and I’m looking forward to continuing this. What they have created through their Mentor Mother model is real, sustainable change. These women, the Mentor Mothers, employed as community health workers are quite literally changing and saving lives in the nine countries where m2m works.”

Meet Christian Brassington

Sophie Ellis-Bextor – Singer and Songwriter

“As both a mother and a woman, I am delighted to officially join the mothers2mothers Family as an Ambassador. By employing women living with HIV as Mentor Mothers – frontline community health workers, m2m is helping to build a strong and resilient network of women, a network I want to be a part of. These women are changing the lives of children, adolescents, and entire families in the nine countries where m2m works. It’s extremely inspiring! I’m proud to support m2m Mentor Mothers as they continue their work, ensuring healthy families thrive, not just survive.”

Meet Sophie Ellis-Bextor

Stephanie Phair – Chief Customer Officer at Farfetch

“It is an honour to join the mothers2mothers Family as an official Ambassador. I have supported m2m for a very long time and I am so happy to continue supporting them as they work to deliver health, hope, and a future free from HIV. I recently shared my Instagram, platform with mothers2mothers Mentor Mother, Nobuntu Ma Awu from South Africa, as part of the #ShareTheMicUK campaign and it was incredible to learn more about her personal life, and her lifesaving work as an m2m Mentor Mother. Here’s to raising the voices of women like Nobuntu, and the powerful sisterhood of Mentor Mothers that is enabling women, children and entire communities to access the health education and services they need to build a bright and healthy future.”

Meet Stephanie Phair

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