Thrive Philanthropy leadership

Staff | Board of Directors
Global Advisory Committee | Regional Funding Steering Committees

staff

Thrive Philanthropy is an international team of BIPOC women from the Global North and Global South. Our CEO has 14 years’ experience in philanthropy, specifically food systems and animal philanthropy. Thrive’s team has a collective 22+ years’ experience in philanthropy and a collective 50+ years’ experience in food justice advocacy. All team members are founders of high-impact organizations and projects.

We are one of the first organizations in the vegan philanthropy space to be led by a Native American woman.

Jessika Ava, MS, MPA (Choctaw)

(she/her)
CEO & Founder

USA/Nepal

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Meghana Rajanahally, MS

(she/they)

Finance & Operations Manager

Aotearoa New Zealand/India

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Nabaasa Innocent

(she/her)

Thrive Africa Manager

Uganda

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Virginia Ruguru

(she/her)
Intern

Kenya

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 Precious Akampurira

(she/her)

Intern

Uganda

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Abigail Mukonyo

(she/her)

Intern

Kenya

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board of directors

Thrive Philanthropy is currently onboarding a new 15-member Board of Directors and this section is being updated. Jessika Ava, the Interim Board President, is stepping down from the board to focus on CEO efforts. Although we’re no longer formally recruiting board members, if you’re interested in a board seat, we invite you to apply here and we’ll hold your application for when a new seat opens.

Jessika Ava, MS, MPA (Choctaw)

(she/her)
Interim Board President

USA/Nepal

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Varda Mehrotra

(she/her)

Board Secretary

India

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Dawn Moncrief, MA, MA

(she/her)

Board Treasurer

USA

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GLOBAL advisory Committee

Thrive Philanthropy has a global advisory committee from multiple countries and continents, all with tactical, management, and regional expertise. Thrive’s Global Advisory Committee supports Thrive in grant decision-making, strategic directions, grantee support, and more.

Zehra Abbas

(she/her)
Islamic Regional and Marketing Advisor

Canada

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Eve Samyuktha

(she/her)

China Regional and Food Tech Advisor

China

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Marcela Borges, J.D.

(she/her)

South America Regional and Development Advisor

Brazil

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Flavia D’Erasmo

(she/her)
Marketing, Organizational Management and Development Advisor

Italy/Indonesia

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Naijha Wright-Brown

(she/her)

Tactical Advisor

USA

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Dr. Krista Hiddema, PhD

(she/her)

Movement History, Tactics, and Organization Management Advisor

Canada

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Meghan O’Brien Lowery

(she/her)
Organization Management and Philanthropy Advisor

USA

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Rachel Kabue

(she/her)
Africa Regional Advisor

Kenya

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Dr. Nathan E. Leonard, DVM

(he/him)

Africa Regional Advisor

Tanzania

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Hannah Murray, MA

(she/her)
Content, Communications, Grant Writing, and Philanthropy Advisor

USA

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Craig Grant

(he/him)

Asia Regional and Capacity Advisor

UK/Asia

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Liana Paris

(she/her)

Philanthropy and Africa Regional Advisor

USA/Africa

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Nataki Kambon

(she/her)
Technology and Africa Regional Advisor

Ghana

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Rubem Gomes

(he/him)

Africa Regional Advisor

Angola

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Shweta Sood

(she/her)

Communications, Asia Regional, and Capacity-Building Advisor

India

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Nii Addo

(he/him)
Africa Regional Advisor

Ghana

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Dash Meizler

(he/him)

Africa Regional Advisor

Uganda

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Alissa Hauser

(she/her)

Organization Management and Philanthropy Advisor

USA

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Zac Lovas

(he/him)
Asia Regional Advisor

Thailand

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Altamush Saeed, J.D.

(he/him)

Asia Regional Advisor and Legal Advisory

Pakistan

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Anonymous

Financial and International Banking

Advisor

USA

supporters

A special thank you to Tact Agency for the pro-bono website, Animal Defense Partnership for pro-bono legal support, and Zehra A. for pro-bono graphic designs and branding.