Yawa Hansen-Quao - Executive Director
Yawa Hansen-Quao is a visionary leader whose career intersects with the values and goals of Emerging Public Leaders. For nearly a decade, she has nurtured female leadership and social entrepreneurship in Africa through the Leading Ladies Network (LLN), a nonprofit she founded in Ghana. Through the Leading Ladies Network, Yawa has fostered an ecosystem of women and girls who have ambitious goals, strong character and resolve to serve as impactful leaders in business, civil society, and government. In May 2012, at the World Economic Forum on Africa, Yawa was recognized as one of Africa’s Rising Leaders and in 2016 was awarded an Eisenhower Fellowship in honor of her pioneering work nurturing emerging women leaders.
In addition to being a founder, speaker, and author, Yawa served for three years on the Foundation Board of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers Community; and is a current member of the Board of Directors of Ashesi University College; a leading liberal arts university in Ghana. She previously served as a leadership consultant to UN Women helping to develop leadership curricula to enhance the capacity of women leaders in East and Southern Africa. Additionally, Yawa served for two years as a member of the Advisory Board of the Women's Institute for Global Leadership at Benedictine University.
Yawa holds a MA in Gender, Peace & Security from the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center, Honors studies in Entrepreneurship & New Product Development at the American University of Rome, and a BSc in Business Administration from Ashesi University College.
Mariam Badi – Program Associate
Mariam is a Program Associate at Emerging Public Leaders. In her capacity, she is responsible for country programs management, organizational development, operations, and business development. Prior to EPL, Mariam lived in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania working with Smart Codes, a local digital marketing agency, on developing an innovation lab for Tanzanian startups. She previously worked at Dexis Consulting and holds significant volunteering experience with Learning Enterprises in Panama, The Foundation for Sustainable Development in Uganda, and Twende Social Innovation Center in Tanzania.
Mariam graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park in 2016 with a B.A. in Government and Politics and minor in International Development and Conflict Management. During her time at Maryland, she won the Boren Scholarship to study Swahili in Arusha, Tanzania. In her free time, she enjoys discovering new coffee shops and searching for the best travel deals online.