MEET THE TEAM
Ricki was born in Botswana and graduated with a BA in International Relations and Criminal Justice from Monash University. She is a passionate human rights advocate for trans people and communities. Some of her work involved regional research on trans populations in Africa and transgender human rights monitoring and reporting to regional and international human rights mechanisms such as the UN and the African Commission; Protection for the rights of transgender and gender variant persons on campuses.
Ricki is also a co-founder of the Southern Africa Trans Forum (SATF).
Phil is a European-African human rights activist and currently serves as the Research Development Director. Her focus is on rights for the people who have been the most left behind. Phil uses research, policy analysis, community watchdogging, advocacy, and accountability as tools. She specialises in conceptualising new ways to work in the gaps and innovate the way work is done by activists, development partners and other stakeholders.
Throughout her career, her passion for ethical, inclusive and participatory research has driven high quality and needs-based research. She says she is at her happiest when she has the freedom to develop innovative projects and responses that allow her to merge her multidisciplinary roots and interests in pedagogy, psychology, community work, technology, the life sciences, political theory and a desire for high design and accessible communication. Life motto - disturb the comfortable; comfort the disturbed.
Sheriff Mothopeng is a gender non-conforming person, LGBTI activist and archaeologist by profession with a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental History and Cultural Heritage from the National University of Lesotho and other certificates of achievements in Public Policy, Governance and Leadership and Marginalization, Exclusion and Inequality through OSISA.Sheriff has been working towards the elimination of discrimination and meaningful inclusion of LGBTQI identifying youth, produced two films, and on the global and Southern African region on trans rights. Sheriff is the first person to achieve legal name change and access gender-affirming surgery in Lesotho, thereby opening the door for others.
Denis Nzioka is a sexual, and gender minority activist, and journalist with a particular focus on LGBTIQ+ and Sex Worker communities in Kenya, and in Africa. He has worked for both regional and international organisations that focus on health, human rights, media, movement building, grant-making, and advocacy.
He was named as one of the World's Top 10 Tweeters on Sexuality and Development by The Guardian's Global Development Professional Networks in 2014, in addition to receiving multiple other accolades, and awards, since 2009. In 2018, South Africa’s LGBTI Awards, the Feathers, honoured him with their 10th anniversary Africa Feather Awards.
Mats is our current AI Director for Finance & Operations, since January 2017. Before this he was the Deputy Executive Director of the International AIDS Society. He started his employment with the IAS as Conference Director in 2003, running one of the largest medical conferences, the International AIDS Conference, normally with 15.000-25.000 participants. Prior to this Mats was the Director of Member Services at the International Cooperative Alliance.
Mats brings years of expertise on finance and organisational management, as well as his roots as an activist to his work at AAI. He is 66 years old, of Swedish origin, living and working in Switzerland for international NGOs since 1992.
Alex is an International Relations specialist, and currently a Researcher at Accountability International. She holds a MSSc in International and European Relations from Linköping University, and a BA in Political Science from University of Bucharest. Recently, she became a member of the United Nations Association of Sweden. Alex’s journey through the ‘sociological imagination’ of IR enabled her to develop a creative and critical thinking, thus complementing her dedication to equality and human rights, regardless skin pigmentation, religion, SOGIE, or any other socio-cultural affiliations. She is particularly interested in gender-based violence research aimed at policy chance.
On a more personal note, Alex was born in Bucharest and is passionate about fine arts and artivism.
Goitse is a final year BA (hons) Global Challenges student at the African Leadership University based in Rwanda.
She is interested in advocacy for women's rights and plans to build a career in development after graduation.
On a personal note, she is an avid debater and reader of all fiction books that are summery and light.