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Members of the CEO Roundtable (in Alphabetical order)

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Mr. Francis Joseph Kwimbere - Tanzania
Mr. Francis Joseph Kwimbere, is Managing Director of Brithol Michcoma Company (Tanzania) Limited, which he joined in 1989 as Branch General Manager. Prior to this he worked at the University of Dar es Salaam as Senior Management Officer responsible for budgeting and financial control matters (1982-1985); Bank of Tanzania as Bank Official responsible for processing applications and related exchange control department activities (1976 - 1978); and with the National Printing Company Ltd as Internal Auditor-cum-Planning Officer (1981 - 1982). He holds a Master of Business Administration (1987) from the University of Bath, U.K, and a Bachelor of Commerce (1981) from the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. He has also attended short courses in internal auditing (April 1981) and in cost benefit analysis (May 1981) at the Institute of Finance Management in Dar es Salaam, as well as seminars in marketing (1994 & 1997 organized by MINOLTA), in product promotion (1994, organised by RISO Pty South Africa Ltd), and in management (1998 organized by Japanese - Tanzania Association, Dar es Salaam). Francis is a Member of Rotary International and has led a number of voluntary organizations for community development. His main hobby is reading. Francis is married and has three children.

Mrs. Hildegard Aloyce Mziray - Tanzania
Mrs. Hildegard Aloyce Mziray served for 20 years in the Finance Department of Total Tanzania Ltd, rising through a male dominated corporation, from Chief Accountant (8yrs) to Finance Manager (12yrs), before assuming other responsibilities in human resources, purchasing, and legal matters. Hilda is a Chairperson of Tender Committee, Acting Secretary of the Board of Directors and Contact Person on Employee Shareholding Scheme with the TOTAL GROUP. From 2002 to 2004, she was Contact Person on OM Plus, a major restructuring scheme on work methods for TOTAL Overseas. Hilda was also instrumental in TOTAL's Y2K preparation. Hilda has a BA in Accountancy from University of Dar-Es-Salaam (1976). She is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), the National Board of Accountants & Auditors (NBAA), and a member of a Tanzania Association of Accountants (TAA). Privately, Hilda owns and operates St. Valentine Elite Academy, an English Medium private school at Mbezi Beach in Dar-es-Salaam, which she established in 1995. The objective of this project is to offer quality education at the primary school level. The school is ranked among the top ten in excellence for class seven national examination results, out of over 100 primary schools in the Dar-es-Salaam Region for the years 2001, 2002, and 2004. Hilda's involvement in community services include; Committee Member and Honorary Secretary of ACCA - Tanzania Chapter; Executive Committee member with the Association of Tanzania Employers for the Fuel Sector; One of the five Directors of the Tanzania AMC Limited - promoters of Wananchi Fund, an empowerment project; Former Committee Member for Membership Admission with NBAA (1999-2002); Committee Member for Education and Training (1996-1998), Setter, Moderator and Marker of NBAA examinations (1976-1985); Chairperson of Small Christian Community of Ada Estate (2001-todate); Treasurer of St. Peter's Church Oyster Bay (2002-todate); Treasurer of the Lay Community of the Archdiocese of Dar-es-Salaam. Hilda is married and has one daughter.

Mr. Mahmoud Thabit Kombo - Tanzania
Mr. Mahmoud Thabit Kombo, is currently an Independent ICT and Telecommunications Consultant in Tanzania. Mr. Kombo is widely experienced in the ICT arena both in networking, including hardware and database design, systems design, and on the software solutions side. Mr. Kombo worked on a number of ICT and telecommunications projects in Tanzania including in the GSM and PSTN transmission arena, voice compression systems, fiber optics network designs, disaster management systems design and databases. He has worked with the Prime Minister's Office and many as a Consultant. Mr. Kombo recently won an IDESA award for his innovations of the Disaster Network Management Information Systems Design, which has earned him a reputation in both the local and international industry through SIDA (Swedish International Development Agency) award scheme. Mr. Kombo was previously Business Operations Manager with ZANTEL, one of the telecommunication companies providing both cellular and fixed line networking services in Tanzania. Before joining ZANTEL he worked with Datel Tanzania Ltd. as a Commercial & Marketing Manager from 1996-1998. Mr. Kombo also briefly worked with the President's Office of the United Republic of Tanzania as Government Principal Information Systems Analyst prior to transfer to Zantel. Mahmoud Kombo holds a Master of Science degree and a post-graduate diploma in Artificial Intelligence from the University of Sunderland (1996), and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Computing from the same university (1995). He is well versed in computer science/software engineering designs and modules, and business administration modules. Apart from the above qualifications, Mr. Kombo has attended several telecommunication certification courses including networking courses and senior management courses. Mr. Kombo has held managerial positions and Project Management positions since 1996 until the time he became a Consultant.

Mrs. Zuhura Sinare Muro - Tanzania
Mrs. Zuhura Sinare Muro holds a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) degree in Social Sceince and post-graduate training in management, adult education, entrepreneurship development, and human resources. She is currently working as Head of Human Resources with Celtel Tanzania Limited in Dar es Salaam. Her previous employment experience includes management of academic activities in a technical college, lecturing in communication skills and entrepreneurship development programs, managing training and business advisory services for SME development and organizational development for non governmental organizations. Her community services include assisting eleven primary schools in Kilimanjaro to improve the learning environment, spur community involvement in the schools, and support effective community based organizations process management. Zuhura is currently developing a school project which will include peace education and leadership orientation programmers targeting youth in the Great Lakes regions (Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi and Democratic Republic of Congo). The major objective of the project is to create future enlightened leadership in the Great Lakes Region. Zuhura is married and has two children.

Mr. Bart Kakooza - Uganda
Since 1996, Mr. Bart Kakooza has run his own television production company and independent television news agency, Media Plus. Media Plus has a countrywide network employing 23 reporters and serving three television stations, namely LTV, CTV and TV Africa. He is currently a Ugandan contributor for CNN World Report. He has also been involved in covering the civil war in Congo, and is currently planning a project to start his own television station. Academically, Bart holds a BA (Lit) degree from Makerere University, Kampala (1985). Professionally, he has been trained in journalism (Diploma in Journalism from Institute of Public Administration, 1988); video production (Certificate in Video Production Techniques from Leeds Polytechnic, UK - 1989) and in television (Certificate in Television Production, from UNESCO 1991 & Certificate in Television News Production from CNN Centre, Atlanta, Georgia, USA - 1996). Before founding Media Plus, Bart was employed by Uganda Television from 1986 to 1995 as a TV Producer. At the same time he freelanced for BBC, CFI and Viz News. He was involved in various independent productions on the genocide and war in Rwanda, HIV/AIDS in Uganda, as well as in the civil wars in Uganda and southern Sudan. Bart is separated and has two children. He is an ardent sportsman in martial arts (Taekondo Blue Belt) and swimming.

Dr. Margaret Jean Kigozi
Dr. Margaret Jean Kigozi has a degree in medicine from Makerere University. She practiced in Uganda, Zambia, and Kenya before joining the private sector as Marketing Director in Crown Bottlers (Pepsi) Ltd in 1994. She was appointed Board Member of Uganda Manufacturers Association and played a key role as Chairperson of the Sector Committee in advising the Government on private sector friendly policies. In 1999 she was appointed Executive Director of the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA), a one-stop centre for investment processing. This is the government body that promotes and facilitates investors in Uganda. Since joining UIA two years ago she has revamped the organization to give it a very positive image. Both foreign and domestic investments have continued to increase, and UIA won the Corporate Location Prize for the best Investment Promotion Agency in Africa and the Middle East. Dr. Kigozi is Chancellor of Nkumba University, Board member of Uganda Export Promotion Board, Chief Commissioner to the Uganda Scouts Association, Patron to the Uganda Change Agents, and a member of the UN Financing for Development Group and the OECD Africa Business Roundtable. She is also the Secretary to the Uganda Presidential investor Roundtable. Dr. Kigozi is an ardent sports woman - she has represented Uganda in table tennis, lawn tennis, squash and hockey.


Mrs. Mariam Luyombo - Uganda
Mrs. Mariam Luyombo is Executive Director of Uganda Women Entrepreneurs Association (UWEAL) and Founder/Director-in-Charge of Taibah Schools' Management Systems. UWEAL provides entrepreneurship training & development, as well as business advisory and counseling services. Her role at Taibah Schools involves working with the school's head teachers to ensure that vision statements are implemented. Mariam founded the first school (Taibah High School, Kampala) in 1991. She then founded three other schools (Silver Spoon day Care Centre, Kampala, 1996; Taibah Junior School, Entebbe Road, 1998; and Taibah College School, Entebbe Road, 2000) within a period of 10 years. Mariam is a seasoned teacher, having worked as a secondary school teacher at Makerere College School Kampala from 1987 to 1988 and as secondary school teacher, as well as head of counseling, at St Joseph's Secondary School Nsambya, Kampala, from 1988 to 1990. All her four schools are among the highly rated private schools in Uganda, drawing students from the East African Great Lakes Region as well as students of Ugandan origin from Europe and USA. Ms. Luyombo's academic qualifications include a Masters degree in Education from Makerere University (1997) and a Bachelors degree in Education from the same University (1985). She has also undertaken several short courses in Uganda and USA to sharpen her skills in education development, school administration, financial management, business management, entrepreneurship development, and customer service (1996-1999). Mariam has worn three awards for achievements: First National Enterprise Award for Young Women Entrepreneurs by Rotary Club & New Vision (1995); Namagunga Old Girls' Association (NOGA) Award of Recognition of Achievement (1998); and Certificate of Recognition for Championing Educational Change in Uganda by Uganda Investment Authority (2001). She also holds professional membership: Member of Kampala Private School Association; Vice-Chairperson Board of Trustees of Uganda Cultural Centre, and Member of Board, Aga Khan Foundation Uganda. Mariam is married and has three children.

Mrs. Catherine Wanjiru Ngahu - Kenya
Mrs. Catherine Wanjiru Ngahu is the founder and Managing Director of Strategic Business Options Ltd, a market research agency. She has 14 years experience in enterprise development, marketing research, and training. She has designed and implemented numerous marketing research projects, customer service surveys, workshops and training seminars. She has also published extensively in the areas of technology policy, customer satisfaction, and quality issues. Catherine has wide experience in leading, coordinating and motivating teams in conducting surveys for a range of private and public sector organizations in East Africa and in the Horn of Africa. Academically, Catherine holds a Bachelor of Education (Business Studies) degree (First Class Honours) from Kenyatta University (1985) and a Masters in Business Administration from University of Nairobi (1987). She was also a Business Research Fellow of Wharton Business School, University of Pennsylvania, USA (1992-1993), and is currently pursuing PhD studies in Organizational Management at the University of Nairobi. She has been a Senior Lecturer at the University of Nairobi, Department of Business Administration in the Faculty of Commerce for over 10 years (1988-2000). She lectures in Customer Behaviour, Marketing Research, Marketing Strategy and Entrepreneurship. She has great interest in private sector development as a vehicle to enhance national competitiveness. Catherine has also done extensive consulting work for various organizations, including African Project Development Facility (APDF), Nairobi Central Business District Association (NCBDA), Family Planning Association of Kenya (2001), Department for International Development (DFID/Ministry of Agriculture), Family Planning Private Sector (FPPS), CARE Kenya, International Centre for Education & Development - University of Warwick, England, NETWAS/AMREF, UNIFEM/KCB, USAID/HRDA, USA, ILO/UNDP, and Kenya Power & Lighting Company. Catherine serves on the Board of Kenya Women Finance Trust (KWFT), a micro finance organization that gives financial credit to women engaged in small businesses. She is also involved in fund raising for training and community mobilization of KWFT's Village Banks Project. She is keenly interested in promoting entrepreneurship among women as a means for economic empowerment.

Mr. Elkanah Odembo - Kenya

Mr. Elkanah Odembo has been appointed by His Excellency, the President of Kenya as Kenya’s Ambassador to France with accreditation to Portugal, Serbia and Vatican City).

Prior to this appointent, Mr. Odembo was the Director of Ufadhili Trust (Centre for Philanthropy and Social Responsibility). The vision of Ufadhili is to promote the well-being of all its citizens, encourage self-reliance, and foster collaboration and partnerships among communities, civil society, business and government. Prior to joining Ufadhili, he worked as a Consultant to the Ford Foundation, Coordinator of Africa Philanthropy Initiative (API) - (1998 - 2000); East Africa Representative for World Neighbors (1988 - 1998); and as Research Officer for the African Medical Research Foundation - AMREF - (1982 - 1988). He is also Chairman of Kenya Community Development Foundation, Lead Facilitator for Kenya Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper Consultation Process, and Member of Selection Committee for the UNDP Africa 2000 Project. Between 1994 and 2000, he was member of Kenya Community Development Foundation Board, founding member of NGO Coalition for East Africa, member of National Advisory Committee for Health Research, member of NGO Co-ordination Board of Kenya, Chairperson of Kenya National Council of Non-Governmental Organizations and member of National Committee for Social Dimensions of Development. Elkanah is passionately committed to bringing development to the rural and underprivileged in society. He believes that businesses could contribute immensely if involved in social development, through developing their Corporate Social Responsibility policies and programs. He is an articulate, persuasive and respected go-getter, with a vast network among policy makers, business, civil society and government. Elkanah has a Bachelors Degree in Biology/Sociology and a Masters Degree in Community Health (Epidemiology). He is married and has two children, and enjoys sports and observing nature.


Mr. Gavin Joseph Bell - Kenya
Mr. Gavin Joseph Bell, is Managing Director/Proprietor of a fast growing franchise chain of restaurants, Kengeles Management Group (KMG). The enterprise incorporates the franchising of Kengele's & Kula Korner restaurant brands, merchandising division, hospitality consulting division, 'Gateway to Hospitality' internship & training division, and a contract & industrial catering division. He has interests in the hospitality industry and promotes 'win-win' linkages and co-strategizing with small enterprises particularly those in the supply end. Prior to founding KMG, Gavin worked for Conservation Corporation Africa in Tanzania as Operations Manager, where he was responsible for project development & overall operation of five hotels. He had also worked as Resident Manager of Siana Springs, Food & Beverage Manager and later General Manager of Mayfair Court Hotel (all part of Windsor Hotels) in Kenya. Before that he was Duty Manager at Sheraton Park Tower in London, UK. Gavin received training in hotel, catering and institutional management at Thames Valley University, Ealing College, London (1987). He has also followed a Project & Leadership Development Program at the Royal Geographical Society in London (1990), a Total Quality Management course in Nairobi (1993), a Strategic Management in Hospitality Industry course at Kenya Utalii College in Nairobi (1994) and Leadership Training for Managers at Dale Carnegie in Nairobi (2000). He is currently pursuing a Master of Business Administration at the United States International University in Nairobi. Gavin contributes to several hospitality journals and is a regular media consultant to franchise and hospitality issues. He also lectures on strategic management (specializing in competition analysis and franchising in the hospitality industry) at the Kenya Utalii College; he is a director of Kenya Association of Hotelkeepers & Caterers (KAHC) - he has taken initiative of setting up a restaurant division within the Association; Committee member of Chaînes des Rôtisseurs; Member of Kenya Wine & Food Society and member of Kenya Private Sector Foundation. Gavin has also been appointed as the Chairman of the Kenya Franchise Association to establish the Association in Kenya. His community involvement includes Founding Member and Trustee of Ele-drive Charitable Trust in England, UK; fund raising & project enhancement for MMM Riara Healthcare, a non-profit charity that looks after the education & re-location of children whose parents have contracted HIV or have died of AIDS; an active member of the Catholic International Community in Nairobi; and member of Kenya Irish Society. Gavin enjoys fly-fishing, rugby, and para-gliding, and is an avid reader of motivational and business development books. He was married in February 2002 and has two daughters Jessica aged 2yrs and Shannon aged 1 month.

Mr Linus W Gitahi - Kenya
Mr Linus W Gitahi, is General Manager of Consumer Healthcare, SmithKline Beecham (SB) Eastern Africa and Indian Ocean islands based in Nairobi. Prior to joining Consumer Healthcare, SB, Linus worked in various capacities with several other business concerns, namely SB Consumer Healthcare, Near East, based in Cyprus (year 2000, Commercial Director); SB London (Head of Africa Marketing, 1999); Regional Marketing Director, SB (1994-1998); Business Development/Export Marketing Manager, SB, (1992-1994); Brand Manager, Sterling Winthrop (SB) (1989-1992); Advertising Executive, Ogilvy and Mather (1988-1989); and Audit Assistant, Coopers and Lybrand (1987-1988).

He holds a Diploma in Management from the Kenya Institute of Management, Nairobi (1991), a Bachelor of Commerce degree (Finance major) from the University of Nairobi (1987) and a Master of Business Administration from the United States International University (1994). Outside his work, he is involved in community-based activities, for which he is Chairperson of Board of Governors for Huhoini Secondary School and Committee member of Christian Family Fellowship. He is married and has 2 children; enjoys playing golf and squash.


Mr. Palkesh J S Shah - Kenya
Mr. Palkesh J S Shah is one of a group of Senior Executives of Spin Knit group of companies (East and central Africa). These executives have been in the manufacturing sector in Textiles, Plastics and Dairy Processing. His collaboration with TechnoServe in setting up a farmer-owned cooling plant demonstrates a sense of social responsibility that is business directed and sustaining. He holds a BSc degree in Business Management (1988) from New Hampshire College, London Campus. He has also been instrumental in the successful growth of Spin Knit Dairy Ltd. in becoming the largest dairy in Kenya within a period of three years. Palkesh is married and has two children. His hobbies are mainly sport - Golf, tennis, cricket, badminton, table tennis and swimming. He also takes part in social events and helps in social organizations. He also has a passion for Trees and the environment that has led him to embark on an ambitious tree project to grow 100,000 trees per year under his ALI project.

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