Hon. Eve Obara is the Founder and Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the Women’s Initiative in Education – NEWI. She is also the Member of Parliament for Kabondo Kasipul Constituency and immediate former Managing Director of Kenya Literature Bureau, a position she held from April 1, 2007 to September 26, 2016.
In the publishing industry, she was a Council member of the lobby, Kenya Publishers Association (KPA), member of the Marketing Society of Kenya (MSK) and Fellow of the Institute of Human Resource Management (IHRM).
An alumnus of Limuru Girls High School and Lwak Girls High School, Hon Obara holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Political Science from the University of Nairobi and has a MSC in Business Administration from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA. She also holds a Certificate in Personnel Management from the Royal Institute of Public Administration, London, UK.
Under the leadership of Hon Obara, the Kenya Literature Bureau (KLB) maintained a structured and disciplined investment strategy that enabled it become a leading textbook publisher, controlling 79 percent of the Secondary School market and 34 percent of the Primary School market. KLB also became the first indigenous book publisher to be awarded ISO9001 certification in Kenya and to produce e-Books with local content.
In another inspiring feat, KLB was in 2010 ranked the third best-run State Corporation in Kenya, out of a field of 139 agencies in performance contracting. KLB continued to excel and improve its quality management standards and was ranked third best most-sustained State Corporation in 2010-2011 for excellence over the last three years.
During her tenure, KLB also maintained sound industrial relations and was recategorised from PC7C to PC7A in the commercial/ manufacturing functional categorisation of State corporations as a result of impressive performance and growth.
Hon Obara left KLB end of September 2016 and was elected Kabondo Kasipul MP in the August 8, 2017 General Elections. She was a member of the Nyanza Provincial Education Board and sat on several school boards. She supports girl child education through NEWI, a not-for-profit organisation of over 600 professionals, mainly women who volunteer their time and resources to promote girl child education in Kenya through mentorship, counselling and role-modelling. NEWI also offers material support to girls in school.
As a champion of women empowerment initiatives, Hon Obara served as the Chairperson of Maendeleo Ya Wanawake Organisation (MYWO) Nyanza and National Executive Committee member of MYWO, the largest grassroots women’s organisation in Kenya.
In 2008, she was awarded the Moran of the Burning Spear (MBS), a recognition for Kenyans who contribute to humanity in their specialisation. She is also a recipient of the MSK Warrior Award, 2010, for innovation in industry and the Girl-Child Crusader Award, 2010 by the Ministry of Education.
Hon. Obara is a member of the Education and Public Accounts Committee of the National Assembly. She is also a member of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Caucus and an executive member (Vice-Chairman) of the KEWOPA – the Kenya Women in Parliament Caucus representing single constituency MP’s.
Widowed early, she is a mother of three grown children, two sons and a daughter.
Dr. Mark Matunga, whose name is synonymous with computer literacy campaigns in Kenya and Africa, is a champion for girl’s education. He has been petitioning and influencing education policies on ICT in 15 African countries including Uganda, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Mozambique, Angola, Botswana, Burundi and Namibia. In his cross-cutting engagements, Dr Matunga is a determined champion of building community ICT centres, schools and health facilities. He is the President and CEO of the Africa Center Advanced Technology, Chairman of the Cyber Security Institute (CSI) and NEWI Founding Trustee. He the former Regional Education Manager at Microsoft East & Southern Africa and Director of Corporate Affairs Group, East Africa at Intel Corporation.
Dr Matunga attended African Nazarene University in Nairobi, where he studied Computer Science and Theology, and then dual Bachelor of Arts degree in Computer Science and Religious Studies in Carroll College, Waukesha, USA. He has an MA in International and Intercultural Management from the School for International Training in Brattleboro, USA. He got a distinction in Project Planning and Design, Peace and Conflict Management, and also in Social Entrepreneurship and Economic Planning. His thesis, ICT in International Development – Narrowing the Digital Gap using Information and Communication Technology, has remained a gem for learners in the digital age.
His experience, passion and vision are a great asset to NEWI.
Josephine Opande is a clinical health officer at the Africa Nazarene University. She has extensive knowledge and experience in clinical medicine and surgery having worked for ANU for more than 23 years, offering consultation, counselling and treatment of patients at the University clinic, besides performing minor surgical procedures and conducting Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) to the University community.
Among others, she has also worked at the Rift Valley Provincial General Hospital, Nairobi City Council’s Ngaira Avenue dispensary and PTB clinic, Operation Crossroads Africa and for an AIDs project in Southern Vermont, USA. In the course of her career, she has sponsored and volunteered her services in several free medical camps in various communities in Kenya.
Josephine holds a Diploma in Clinical Medicine and Surgery from the Kenya Medical Training College, Post-Graduate Diploma in Paediatrics from the Adventist University of Africa and Sydney Children’s Hospital, Certificate in STDs Management from Nairobi University Special Treatment Centre and various NASCOP certificates in VCT and PMTC.
She is a member of Nazarene Healthcare Fellowship: Nazarene compassionate Ministry and NEWI Associate Trustee.
Ms. Vallary Okello is a goal-oriented professional with cross functional leadership qualities in organizational development and administration. She has more than 17 years’ experience in leadership and management in non-profits, public and the private sector having served as an Assistant Human Resource and Administration Manager at Kenya Literature Bureau. Currently, she is a Human Resource Consultant, Director of Training and Conferencing Management at Eagles Digital Wealth Education and Consultancy and NEWI Associate Trustee
Among others, Ms Vallary have exceptional competencies in employee relations, training and development, performance appraisal and management, policy formulation and review, employee health and safety, project management, compensation, budget and benefits management, compliance, strategy formulation and implementation, data and information analysis, risk management, and re-tooling of employees for optimal performance.
Vallary a holder of a Master of Administration (Human Resources) degree from Moi University and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics from the Shreemati Nathibai Damodar Thackersey (SNDT) Women’s University in Mumbai, India. She also holds a Higher National Diploma in Human Resources Management from the Institute of Human Resource Management (IHRM) and a Certificate in Facilities Management from the Quantum Institute of Business Consulting. She is a Certified ISO 9001:2015 internal auditor and a member of the Institute of Human Resources Management (IHRM).
Joseph Ndegwa is a public relations and communications professional who is currently chairman of the Editorial Board of the Public Relations Society of Kenya (PRSK), an umbrella body that brings together all PR and communications management professionals in Kenya. With over 10 years strategic communications experience, he delights in exceeding expectations – whether in branding, publicity, advocacy, audience-engagement, media or social media. He is the Senior Corporate Communications Officer at Kenya Literature Bureau.
Joseph’s planning, leadership skills and contribution in the Task Force on Public Relations and Communications Management Bill, where he was the Joint Secretary and drafter earned him recognition among peers. His prior background includes research, marketing and administration at various private and non-governmental organisations, including Talanta Africa Media and Telecommunications Company Limited, Kentra Travel and Tours and Madison Insurance Company Kenya. He has consulted donor funded projects, among others.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Business Studies from Kenyatta University, a Diploma in Public Relations from Kenya Institute of Management and finalised his Master in Communications Degree at the University of Nairobi. Joseph is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Laws degree at the University of Nairobi.
He is a member of PRSK and NEWI Associate Trustee.
Levina holds a Masters of Arts in Economics and a barchelor of Arts (Hons) in Economics from Banaras Hindu University, India. A post Graduate Diploma in Education From Maseno University and Certificate in Monitoring and Evaluation from Kenya Institute of Management. She previously worked as an adjunct Lecturer at KCA University. A researcher and a policy expert in monetary issues. She has consulted for a number of local and international agencies including Helpage International, World Vision, Japan International & Corporation Agency(JICA) and USAID.
At NEWI, we believe in the power of mentorship and volunteerism, and are passionately working with girls, teachers & Community leaders.
NEWI Kenya offers volunteer opportunities to both the youth and adults.