Staff

US Office

Concepcion Gaxiola,  Executive Director

As AGE Africa’s Executive Director, Concepcion is responsible for leading AGE Africa’s vision, mission, strategy, and fundraising efforts. Most recently, she served as Director of Development at Women Thrive Worldwide, now Women Thrive Alliance, and as Director of Organizational Advancement at United to End Genocide. Prior to her work in nonprofits Concepcion worked for 10 years at Troxler and Associates Inc., now TVP Asset, a private real estate financial firm in Southern California.

In her spare time, Concepcion enjoys reading, yoga, cooking and discovering her creativity.

Alison Anderson, Financial & IT Consultant

Alison manages AGE Africa’s finance and technology needs. Alison is a principle at Lovellette Consulting, specializing in nonprofit’s finance, administrative, and data management needs. Previously, Alison has acted as the General/Operations Manager for several multimillion dollar nonprofits, including Grantmakers for Effective Organizations and New Repertory Theatre. Alison holds a Bachelor’s of Arts from Davidson College in Theatre and a concentration in International Studies, Magna Cum Laude. She earned her Master of Arts Management with Highest Distinction from Carnegie Mellon University’s John Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management.

Karl Laubacher, Program and Development Associate

Karl is AGE Africa’s Program and Development Associate in Washington.  Previously, he worked with AGE in Blantyre, Malawi as a Development, Marketing, and Programs Assistant. He joined the Blantyre team after working in AGE Africa’s Washington, D.C. office as a Development and Communications Volunteer starting in 2015. He received his B.A. in International Studies from American University concentrating on International Development in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Prior to American, Karl completed the Thinking Beyond Borders Global Gap Year Program where he studied international development issues in Ecuador, China, India, and South Africa. He found his passion for international development work in high school while volunteering at Foods Resource Bank in Western Springs, Illinois.

Malawi Office

Gertrude Kabwazi, Country Director

Gertrude holds a BA in International Development from the University of South Africa and a Master’s in Women’s Law from the University of Zimbabwe. She joins us after serving four years as the National Gender Coordinator at Concern Universal in Malawi. Prior to her time with Concern Universal, Gertrude worked as the Regional Women’s Rights and HIV/AIDS Officer at Action Aid and served as the IEC Coordinator at Dignitas International.  Gertrude is a passionate supporter of girls’ education and womens’ opportunities and has spent much of her free time mentoring and counseling young women through school.  She has published a book for girls called the ‘Golden Stick’–a motivational true story about the power of education to transform girls’ lives.

Lemon Chipwatali, Program and Learning Manager

As the Program and Learning Manager, Lemon oversees the implementation of all AGE Africa’s programs, and is responsible for guiding the organization’s monitoring and evaluation strategy at the high level.  Lemon is passionate about community development work and has diverse experience in the public health and development sector. Prior to joining AGE Africa, he worked with the Malawi-office of Partners in Health spear-heading monitoring and evaluation and learning for PIH’s nutrition program serving adolescents and adults. Prior to that, he worked for Concern Universal in a variety of roles, including M&E Officer, Nutrition Education Officer, Training and Organizational Development Coordinator and Team Leader for multiple programs across several Districts. Lemon is currently pursuing his Master’s in Public Health at the Malawi College of Medicine. He received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Agriculture, specializing in Family Science, from the University of Malawi Bunda College.

Matsiriziro Dannayo, Admin and Finance Officer

Matsiriziro serves as AGE Africa’s Administration and Finance Officer in Malawi.  Prior to joining AGE Africa’s team, he worked for over four years with Digintas International as an Accountant where he was responsible for managing budgeting processes, general financial management and reporting, audit, and administration.  He has considerable experience working with international disbursements, including a background in managing USAID grants, and supporting organizations’ compliance with strict financial audits.  He currently hold certifications from the Public Accountancy Examination Council of Malawi as well as from USAID.  He is currently working towards his Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration at the Columbia Commonwealth University in Malawi.  Matsi is passionate about education and in a former career, even served as the headmaster of a private school in Malawi.

Edith Amin-Kankhulungo, Monitoring Officer

Edith Amin-Kankhulungo came to AGE Africa after nearly five years of service to teaching English and life skills at St. Mary’s Girls secondary school in Zomba and a year as a social worker advocating for rights and empowerment of persons with disabilities in Chiradzulu district. Edith graduated from the Catholic University of Malawi with a Degree in Special Needs Education – upper second class honors and wrote her dissertation on provisions for special needs learners in Malawi public schools. She is actively involved in girls’ empowerment programs and loves to encourage girls to dream big and work hard to achieve their dreams. Beyond being an advocate of girls’ empowerment, Edith is a proud mother of two boys, ages 5 and 1, a poet, and an avid reader.

Mphatso Zidana, District Officer Zomba

Mphatso is a recent graduate of the University of Malawi with a Bachelor’s degree in Media and Development. He is a talented facilitator with a professional background in journalism, youth engagement programming and peer mentoring. Mphatso joined AGE Africa in January of 2012 as the Program Assistant and as the primary coordinator of our programs in Zomba District. Mphatso has acted as a mentoring guest facilitator for AGE Africa and AGE Africa’s partner NGO, the Girl Leader Empowerment Program. He is currently leading our curriculum development in group facilitation and leadership development.

Bertha Bonongwe, District Officer Mangochi

Prior to joining AGE Africa, Bertha served as a Field Officer for six years with Concern Universal. As a Field Officer, she worked on a variety of projects, including projects on malaria, Enhancing Quality and Inclusive Public Services (EQUIPS), and water and sanitation hygiene. Bertha found her passion for empowering girls after personally having been the beneficiary for educational support as a young woman. It was only with the assistance of several different NGOs that Bertha was able to complete her secondary and tertiary educations in Malawi. Bertha will be graduating from ShareWORLD Open University with a bachelor’s degree in Public Health in December 2016. She also holds a Diploma in Food Nutrition and Livelihood Security from The Natural Resources College, an agricultural and natural resources training institution.

Irina Manjomo Pasiya, District Officer Mulanje

ina graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Special Needs Education with Honors from the Catholic University of Malawi in 2011. In 2012, Irina joined the Malawi Council for the Handicapped as a Community Rehabilitation Officer. She later served in the Women and Children’s Section as an Officer and a Coordinator.

Over the years, Irina has gained facilitation, project management, and community-based rehabilitation skills. Irina enjoys working with young girls from poor socioeconomic backgrounds as she comes from a similar background. She also enjoys traveling and collecting art in her spare time.