Nana Ama Akowuah is the current president of YAAPD. She was born and raised in Ghana, and is a third-year student studying Chemical engineering at Yale.

She is a founding member of the Dislabelled initiative that seeks to improve the special education system in Ghana.

She is interested in issues pertaining to entrepreneurship and governance in Africa and hopes to use her tenure as president to promote discourse on tackling some of the issues facing the continent, as well as steer African youth towards thinking of creative strategies to solving these problems. She loves to travel and hopes to walk the Camino some day. 



Lisa Achoki is the Vice-President of YAAPD. She was born and raised in Kenya but has lived in Uganda as well. 

She is a third year Economics major at Yale University and her interests lie in the economics of sustainable African socioeconomic development. In particular, the provision of education, healthcare and infrastructure as well as how cultures can be preserved as countries progress.

In the future, she hopes to use her degree, exposure and experience to work alongside government policies to help reform and contribute towards the development of the continent. 



Lekha Tlhotlhalemaje is a second year student in Pierson College, from Johannesburg, South Africa.  She hopes to major in Environmental Studies and History, but is currently undeclared.

She is a co-director of Speaker Relations for YAAPD, and joined YAAPD in 2015, hoping to gain a better understanding of contemporary African issues, as well as to have a chance to engage with people on the continent who are making meaningful contributions to different facets of life. Lekha is also involved in the Ivy Leadership Summit Planning Committee, Bridges English Second Language tutoring, and club field hockey.



Claire Young is a second year student in the Global Affairs major. She currently resides in Bamako, Mali.

She joined YAAPD in 2015, and is our current Director of Logistics. She is passionate about a number of the problems facing the continent and looks forward to engaging with the phenomenal thought makers that grace our conference each year on how to begin tackling some of these issues.She started an online jewelry store, The Baobab Boutique, to raise money for women’s health and anti-malaria initiatives in Mali. 



Marie Gaye (DC '20) is a freshman at Yale and serves as the Logistics Director for YAAPD. Marie was born in New York City to Senegalese parents and grew up in Tennessee. Marie is considering majoring in Ethnicity, Race, and Migration and Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology.

In addition to her work in African and Black affairs, Marie also serves as president of Road to Academia, a college admissions guidance platform that she founded geared toward advising disadvantaged students aspiring for top institutions.



Osase Omoruyi is the Director of Publicity for YAAPD. She was born to Nigerian parents in New York City, but raised in Jamaica, Canada and Texas. She is a second year student studying Astrophysics at Yale.

Osase is interested in addressing the harmful impact Western and Chinese imperialism have had on African countries and peoples. She is highly engaged in social justice and is particularly passionate about women's rights and economic inequality across the globe. She aspires to use her position as publicist to bring more attention to these issues and foster discussion for potential solutions.



Nana Akua Amoafoa Mensah is a third year student from Accra, Ghana in Timothy Dwight College majoring in African Studies and Italian. Her primary academic interests lie in studying cultural production in post colonial nations and the interaction of western hegemony and these cultures. In addition, she is interested in how countries that were previously colonizers integrate that legacy in their national myths, and how that shapes the language around their immigration policies.

Outside of class, she has a passion for the art of fashion, fashion communication and visual merchandising; and has worked with fashion brands in her home country and in social media management for different organizations.



Jemimah is a second year student double majoring in Economics and Global Affairs. She was born in Nigeria but has lived in Ghana for the past 14 years.  Growing up in Ghana, she witnessed the political trade- offs of aid dependency. She has a deep interest in analyzing the socio- economic effects of foreign aid in Ghana and West Africa in particular.

Despite this passion, she is also fascinated by psychology, history, literature and film. She is very excited to be the Finance Director for the YAAPD this year and is looking forward to gaining the opportunity to learn and engage with a talented network of young African leaders. She is also a part of  Yale's Afrogroove dance-group Dzana, a member of the Yale Undergraduate Diversified Investment Club (YUDI) and a Head Organizer of the Ivy Leadership Summit 201


Ephrem Rae (BR’18) is a Pre-Medical student and prospective Global Affairs major from Arlington, VA with a planned concentration in International Development and Global Health. He hopes to explore the socioeconomic determinants of health and the role of culture in creating effective and equitable health policy, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa.

His interest in Global Health developed in high school after working with two NGO’s in low income communities of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Later, he served as a research assistant in the Infectious Disease Clinic of the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Washington, D.C. developing HIV/AIDS patient tracking databases and investigating the effects of various socioeconomic factors on patient outcomes. On campus, Ephrem is the Director of Development for the Yale Undergraduate Association for African Peace and Development, and enjoys running, reading, and watching documentaries.



Fadzai Mataru is a second year student from Zimbabwe studying Mechanical Engineering, although she takes great interest in Psychology and Film and Theatre.

Despite the STEM path she has chosen, Fadzai's passion lies in issues involving women and children. She hopes that in the future she will be able to join the fight for career opportunities for women and disabled children, better sanitary conditions for women living in remote areas, education for the economically disadvantaged and better medical care for orphans of HIV.  Having grown up surrounded by these issues, she hopes to return to Zimbabwe and help in eradicating the problems that plague society. She is very excited to be Development Coordinator for this academic year.




Osariemen Ogbemudia is a second year student and is one of our development coordinators.  She is first generation Nigerian and is double majoring in Biomedical Engineering and Economics, on the pre-med track. Her interests are public and global health with a focus on issues in West Africa (eg, malaria, HIV, tuberculosis).

In her free time she writes for The Tab Yale and designs clothes. On campus she is involved with Yale Chi Alpha Christian Fellowship, Students of Nigeria and Asempa (Afro-Acapella). 




Tina is a sophomore double majoring in Economics and History. Although she has the opportunity to live and study all over the world from London to San Salvador her heart lies in her home continent of Africa, where she hopes to elevate issues of economic injustice and disparity through her passion for business consultancy and communications. Outside of school, she is on board a micro finance loan program that aids inventive young women to strategize, fund, and achieve their business goals; she founded two orphanages in Kenya and Zimbabwe where her parents are from; and works with students in rural Uganda to help them apply and fund for higher education opportunities.  At Yale, she engages herself in community service work as a member of Yale Hunger and Homeless Action Project/ Dwight Hall while also volunteering at No Closed Doors.