Our Team

Mark McCord
Chief of Party/Director

Mr. Mark McCord is an expert in economic development, innovation, organizational leadership, enterprise, governance, and investment promotion. He has more than 27 years’ experience in local economic development, having served as President and CEO of four different metropolitan Chambers of Commerce and economic development authorities during his career in the United States. In addition, he has led local economic development efforts in a variety of countries, including Bosnia and Herzegovina, Romania, Afghanistan, Cyprus, Jordan, Bhutan, and Tunisia. He has extensive experience in conjunction with donor agencies, executives, government officials and nonprofits to promote competitiveness and increased opportunities for youth. His international development experience spans 66 countries and 6 continents. Mr. McCord is currently Chief of Party for Deloitte East Africa’s YALI Regional Leadership Center East Africa, which promotes leadership among African youth.

Maggie Kamau-Biruri
Partnership Director

Maggie has worked in the international development sector for more than 15 years, in Africa and the US. She is currently the Partnership Director for the Yali Regional Leadership Center for East Africa, charged with cultivating partnerships for the Center. Prior to joining the Center, Maggie worked as Senior Resource Mobilization Officer at the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA), where she raised more than $50 million from private foundations, donor governments and private sector.

Prior to her work at AGRA, Maggie worked as the Africa Regional Director for the International Child Resource Institute, a 33 year old international organization with programs in US, Ghana, Kenya, Nepal and Zimbabwe. As Regional Director, Maggie led the design and development of programs for families in East Africa in the areas of child protection, economic opportunities for youth and women and Early Childhood Education. Maggie started her work in international development in the San Francisco Bay Area where she was an active speaker, advisor and thought leader in the vibrant international development community. Ms. Biruri serves on several international nonprofit Boards including Thriive Inc., ICRI-Africa and Harambee Arts. She holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from California State University.

Farah Eck
Alumni & Volunteer Relations Director

Farah Eck is a global citizen who was born of a Pakistani father, American mother, and has lived in 9+ countries, so she is from everywhere and nowhere! Farah’s background is in fundraising, organizational capacity, communications, and relationship-building. She has a B.A. in Advertising, a M.A. in Communications, a graduate certificate in Nonprofit Management, and a M.A. in International Relations and Conflict Resolution. She relocated to Nairobi in April 2015 with her husband, Daniel, to experience the adventure of a lifetime in Africa while serving as the Alumni & Volunteer Relations Director of the YALI Regional Leadership Center East Africa.

In her spare time, Farah loves to expend her creative juices writing, having recently co-authored a children’s cookbook and nutritional guide, Freddy, Fork it Over! and is currently penning a children’s storybook based upon oral Kenyan folklore. Dan and Farah are expecting their first child in August 2016 and are eager for a third member of the family to join them on their international adventures.

Imran Vaghoo
Admissions Director

Imran Vaghoo is the Director of Admissions at the YALI Regional Learning Center East Africa program. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN in 2006 where he majored in business and biology with a chemistry minor. He joined the admissions team at his Alma mater immediately after graduation where he discovered his passion for enrollment management. In 2012 Imranmoved back to Kenya and started American Higher Education Consulting, using his personal and professional experience to assist East African students seeking university education in North America. He is enthusiastic about empowerment through education. He considers himself an entrepreneur who enjoys coffee, new technology, having animated conversations and talking about himself in the third person.

Charles Warria
Monitoring & Evaluation Director

Charles Warria is a Development Analyst and Results Expert with extensive experience and expertise in working with the Public and Private sector in Africa, as well as the Civil Society in identifying, documenting and utilizing results for sustainable development. As a seasoned practitioner, he has worked extensively with Civil Society Organizations, Government Departments, Corporate Companies and Community groups across Africa and Asia on participatory approaches to sustainable development, rights-based approaches to engaging with Governments at different levels, through multi-stakeholder processes and systems in East, Central and Southern Africa, building their capacity for results-based management and change measurement, conducting evaluations, program audits and participatory approaches to sustainable development, setting up M&E systems, knowledge management and information use for myriad local and international NGOs. Charles has engaged extensively in building capacity, facilitating and documenting adaptations and innovations for Outcome Mapping in East and Central Africa, and also as an External Learning Facilitator for the Uganda Water Sector (Triple S), the Technical Advisor for M&E to the Prolinnova Network (Promoting Local Innovation in Africa), a network that brings together 26 countries across Africa and Asia. More recently, Charles has worked with the Drivers of Accountability Programme, a multi-agency and multi-actor platform to expand accountable governance and opportunities for public participation in decision making and service delivery processes in Kenya. Charles is a founding member of the Evaluation Society of Kenya, a member of the International Child Rights Network, a member of the Kenya Human Rights Network (HURINET), a member of the Africa Evaluation Association (AfrEA), a member of the Outcome Mapping Learning Community, member of the African Community of Practice for Managing Development Results (AfriCOP-MfDR), member of the Capacity Development Network, and member of the Global Development Professionals Network.

David Kamau
Curriculum & Learning Director

I understand my calling in life to be – to help people ‘Align their perspectives to truth.’ This truth is the truth about who they are, what they are capable of and how to overcome what truly holds them back. I’ve been working to fulfil that calling over the past 12 years; through speaking, facilitation and creating life transforming content & curriculum.

Over the years, I’ve had the privilege of engaging with a variety of audiences ranging from children, youth, corporate executives, entrepreneurs among others. These audiences probably total in the thousands. Some of the topics I’ve spoken on include: Leadership, Life Skills, Team work, Entrepreneurship, Facilitation skills, Personal Development, Vision & Strategy, Marriage, Masculinity and a host of others.

Through my work at the RLC, I look forward to impacting and raising a new breed of Leaders that will radically transform the East Africa region & beyond, for good.

When I am not out changing the world, you will find me hanging out with my wife & son.

Edna Gathigia
Partnership Manager

Edna Gathigia is a holder of a Master's Degree in International Business and has worked in various international non-governmental organizations such as the International Labour Organization (Kenya) and the United Nations Development Program (Zanzibar - Tanzania) among others. She is now the Partnership Manager at the YALI Regional Leadership Center East Africa where she is tasked with resource mobilization.

Keneth Sawe
Alumni & Volunteer Relations Manager

Keneth is currently the Alumni and Volunteer Relations Manager for the Yali Regional Leadership Center East Africa. Prior to joining the Center, Keneth worked as a Marketing & Corporate Affairs Manager at Kabarak University. He has also worked at KCA University, Family Bank and Kenya Commercial Bank.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations & Marketing from Daystar University and is currently pursuing a Masters’ Degree in Public Policy and Administration at Kenyatta University.

Keneth is passionate about working with young people especially in the areas of Public Management, Policy and Leadership.

Francis Wamwangi
Curriculum & Learning Manager

In July 2015 Francis joined the YALI Regional Leadership Center as the Learning & Curriculum Manager. He joined the Center from Safaricom Ltd where he had been the Senior Officer Learning and Development where he was responsible for Leadership & Management development, Corporate Functions and Retail Training. He also served as a Senior Officer – Organization Effectiveness and Change Management.

Prior to this he was the Regional Training Manager and Fairtrade Projects Officer at Homegrown (K) Ltd and Education Coordinator at the William Holden Wildlife Foundation.

Francis is an Alumni of Mangu High School and Moi University and he is currently pursuing an MBA at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology. He holds a Higher National Diploma in Human Resources Management and has attended Strathmore Business School’s programs on Developing Leadership Capabilities and Effective Internal Business Partnering. He is also certified by the Institute of Leadership & Management in Advanced Skills Development for Training Professionals. His greatest interests lie in leadership development, social justice and the environment. He has travelled on work assignment to Zambia, United States, United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Netherlands and Austria.

Susan Amu
Communications Manager

Susan Amu is an advocacy communications specialist with over 10 years of experience working in the humanitarian, development and media sectors. Susan has previously worked with, The Standard Media Group, Inter Press Service Africa, World Vision Kenya, World Vision East Africa and most recently, World Vision Sudan. Her expertise include but are not limited to; internal communications, developing and implementing communications and advocacy strategies, emergency and crisis communications, and communications for development (C4D).