The END Fund, a collaborative philanthropic fund dedicated to ending neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), has announced the appointment of Tsitsi Masiyiwa as its new Board Chair.
Masiyiwa succeeds William (Bill) Campbell, who served as the inaugural Board Chair since 2012. Under Campbell’s leadership, the END Fund has successfully mobilized resources from over 6,400 donors, delivering more than 1.5 billion treatments through locally-driven NTD programs in 31 countries.
Campbell expressed his confidence in Masiyiwa’s appointment, highlighting her reputation as a respected philanthropist and social entrepreneur. He praised her effective advocacy and exemplary leadership, particularly in her role as Chair and Co-Founder of Higherlife Foundation.
Campbell believes that Masiyiwa’s vision, experience, and networks will accelerate the END Fund’s ambitions and deepen its impact in new ways. He also emphasized the importance of Masiyiwa’s voice in increasing the urgency and prioritization of NTDs among key decision-makers.
Masiyiwa has been an integral part of the END Fund’s journey since its inception in 2012. She has served as a board member for the past six years and was appointed as Co-Vice Chair in 2022.
NTDs affect over 1.7 billion people worldwide, with Africa bearing more than 40% of the global burden. The END Fund has been actively working in Kenya, collaborating closely with the Ministry of Health to transform the country’s Lymphatic Filariasis elimination program.
The organization has provided consistent funding to restart mass drug administration in the coastal region, resulting in the successful interruption of disease transmission. In 2021 alone, the END Fund treated over 11 million people, trained over 27,000 health workers, and distributed treatments worth over $600,000 in Kenya.
As the new Board Chair, Masiyiwa aims to champion the importance of African leaders taking ownership and leading the agenda on addressing the NTD disease burden. This burden costs African economies billions of dollars every year, according to the World Health Organization.
Masiyiwa expressed her honor in being appointed as Chair and her commitment to empowering affected communities to eliminate NTDs. She also emphasized the collective responsibility of ending NTDs and highlighted the need for greater government ownership and support.
Ellen Agler, the CEO of the END Fund, praised Masiyiwa’s appointment, highlighting her inspiring advocacy and activism. Agler emphasized Masiyiwa’s ability to effectively connect her work with communities to global conversations, accelerating progress in ending the suffering caused by NTDs.
Agler expressed her excitement about serving with Masiyiwa in her new role as END Fund Board Chair.
In addition to her position as Chair of the END Fund, Masiyiwa also serves as Chair of Higherlife Foundation, Delta Philanthropies, and Co-Impact.
She has been a leading philanthropist and advocate for gender equality for over two decades, co-founding the Higherlife Foundation in 1996 with her husband, Strive. The foundation focuses on health, education, climate-smart agriculture, and disaster preparedness and recovery to foster thriving individuals, communities, and sustainable livelihoods.