Melizsa Mugyenyi

Board of trustees

Melizsa Mugyenyi's picture


Based in Nairobi, Kenya, Melizsa has dedicated her career to achieving sustainable impact outcomes within sub-Saharan Africa, and is currently World Data Lab’s lead and deputy vice-president, strategic engagements.

Previously, she held the position of chief executive officer at the Graça Machel Trust, a Pan African organisation focused on the economic and social advancement for African women and girls. During her tenure, Melizsa navigated the organisation through the post-COVID-19 landscape, achieving remarkable programmatic expansion and organisational growth outcomes.  

At her core, Melizsa is a partnership-building and organisational development specialist. Her experience spans a variety of thematic spaces, including health, education, youth development, livelihoods, women’s advancement and governance. Melizsa has designed, led or fundraised for high-impact initiatives while working with various leading organisations at senior levels, including the Aga Khan Foundation and International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX).

Beyond her executive roles, Melizsa is an active board member of several forward-thinking organisations that are driving change in priority sectors. This includes the African Visionary Fund, a sector disruptor that is tackling inequities and righting the power imbalances in philanthropy.

Melizsa holds a masters in law, globalisation and development from the University of London (SOAS) and a BA in politics and international relations from the University of Sheffield.