Abbe Fessenden, M.A.
Abbe Fessenden is Chair of the Board of Directors for Aumazo. She is a principal and co-founder of Value-Add, L.L.C, with more than 35 years of international development experience. She has worked on design, oversight and evaluation of technical assistance and policy reform activities, primarily in West Africa, including Cameroon. Her work often involved integrating institutional and organizational assessments into project design and evaluation as well as strategic planning. As a program/project development officer for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), she took a leading role in design and evaluation of many projects in agriculture/natural resources, economic growth, economic and marketing reforms, health, and infrastructure in nations throughout Africa. Among her assignments were developing the Africa Bureau’s Non-Project Assistance (NPA) guidance, working for Africa Bureau’s Project Development Office, and managing the Southern Africa Regional Program portfolio. She holds a Master of Arts in International Affairs (African studies, Economics), from the Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University, Washington D.C., and a B.A. (Political Science, History), from Barnard College, Columbia University, N.Y.
Rosemary Martin has 25 years of experience in the nonprofit sector. She earned her B.A. in anthropology from Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., and a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from the Duke University Continuing Education Program in Durham, N.C. She is currently a Program Officer for the National Geographic Society in Washington, D.C., where she manages grantmaking for educational initiatives. Rosemary’s previous roles include writing and managing government, private, and corporate grant awards for art education and curatorial projects at The Mint Museum in Charlotte; overseeing fundraising and communications for Legal Services of Southern Piedmont in Charlotte; managing communications for Barium Springs Home for Children in Barium Springs, N.C.; and planning and presenting art exhibitions and educational programs at Associated Artists of Winston-Salem. In addition to her work with Aumazo, Rosemary volunteers with Grants Managers Network. Previously, she was a member of the Regional Artist Project Grants review panel for the Arts Council of Winston-Salem & Forsyth County and a member of the Impact Fund for Emerging Philanthropists of Foundation For The Carolinas in Charlotte.
Francis Gilbert, Ph.D.
Francis Gilbert is founder and principal of the consulting group under his name, specialized in interpretive development and exhibit consulting. He is a program development specialist with broad background in business management, strategic planning and program implementation. His experience in nonprofit organizations includes designing and implementing environmental outreach programs; fostering positive national, international and cross-institutional cooperation, and managing all development phases of complex projects. Among his projects are development of a strategy for interpreting the National Marine Sanctuary System’s multifaceted holdings, and serving as Director of Development of the Sonoran Sea Aquarium project in Tucson, where he spearheaded plans to develop a facility focused on Arizona’s rivers and the Gulf of California. He is active in MetroDogs, a newly formed canine urban Search and Rescue organization in the DC area, and serves on its board of directors. A native of France, he has traveled widely. He holds a doctorate in Cultural Studies, and a master of arts in Francophone culture, both from the University of Arizona.
Shawnte M. Mitchell
Shawnte Mitchell is Assistant General Counsel and Head of the Divisional Support Unit within the Legal Affairs Division of Emergent BioSolutions Inc. She provides strategic legal advice in a variety of areas, including corporate governance, healthcare regulatory, and product development, and has served as lead negotiator on a various transactions. Prior to Emergent, Shawnte was an Associate at Ropes & Gray LLP, where she advised health care, life sciences clients and technology clients in merger and acquisition, venture capital investment and debt transactions. Shawnte received a law degree from George Washington University Law School and her bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences from Stanford University. In her spare time, Shawnte enjoys classic movies, reading, football and going to the spa!
Robert C. Newland, CPA
Robert Newland is a public accountant in Beltsville, Maryland.
Paul B. Essex, Esq.
Paul Essex is a practicing attorney in Beltsville, Maryland.
Sylvester Seuyam Youssa
Sylvester Seuyam Youssa (Lead Field Manager) was born and lives in Cameroon. He became a priest after graduating from the Regional Seminary of Douala-Cameroon in 1997. Successively, he has worked as an Assistant priest, a vice steward of the rural parish of Bakou, a Cure and as a Spanish teacher at the middle school in Bankondji-Cameroon. Father Sylvester is currently the first priest in function at the parish St. Joseph of Bankondji. Father Sylvester carries with him the private pain of losing a mother to ignorance at age 9. After his mother’s death, he had to forgo his childhood to help his father raise his three younger brothers. Despite his priesthood, he clearly understands the struggle of single parenthood and a sad reality of losing a mother too early. He strongly believes in female education. He vows to dedicate the rest of his life not only to saving souls, but also to raising awareness on the importance of girls’ education.