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GIN-SSOGIE Board Member Nominations

We are pleased to present the profiles of candidates who have passed the first round of vetting with the Nominations Committee. Profiles are listed by region and in alphabetical order.

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Region: Middle East and North Africa

Nermeen Abdelhady

Region: Middle East and North Africa

Nermeen Abdelhady is a dedicated pansexual non-binary activist hailing from Cairo, Egypt, with a rich background in advocating for LGBTQI+ rights. Their journey in this realm commenced in 2013 when they established a crucial social support network for LGBTQI+ students, concurrent with their pursuit of a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology.

Since then, Nermeen’s commitment to their cause has only grown stronger. They have actively contributed to various facets of the LGBTQI+ movement as they assumed the role of Executive Director of Mesahat Foundation until 2022, amassing valuable experience in leadership, management, fundraising, holistic safety and security, queer oral histories documentation, capacity building, and movement development throughout the SWANA region. Furthermore, they led the Alliance of Queer Egyptian Organizations (AQEO) to numerous successful regional and international advocacy initiatives until 2022.

With profound dedication and unwavering passion, Nermeen continues to be an influential force in the ongoing struggle for the rights and well-being of the LGBTQI+ community in the SWANA region and beyond.

Presently, Nermeen focuses on fostering LGBTQI+ inclusion within the domains of international development and educational reform in Egypt, marking a promising new chapter in their impactful career.


Region: Pacific

Dr Elizabeth Kerekere

Region: Pacific

Whānau a Kai, Ngāti Oneone, Te Aitanga a Māhaki, Rongowhakaata, Ngāi Tāmanuhiri iwi/nations from Aotearoa New Zealand and Co. Clare and Co. Tipperary from Ireland

Elizabeth is a life-long grassroots activist, focused on indigenous issues for 40+ years, relating to health, mental health, suicide and violence prevention and youth development. As a leader within Rainbow and youth development sectors for 35+ years, Elizabeth has mentored over 50 young people. In Parliament (2020-2023), Elizabeth’s record-breaking petition to ban conversion therapy led to law being passed within one year and she helped secure government funding for trans, non-binary and intersex people.

Elizabeth founded Tīwhanawhana Trust in 2001 to advocate for takatāpui (Māori LGBTIQ) to “tell our stories, build our communities and leave a legacy.” She has represented Rainbow and indigenous human rights issues around the world, including at the UN. Tīwhanawhana co-hosted ILGA World in Aotearoa 2019 and Elizabeth co-led the organisation of the LBQ Women*’s Conference in Cape Town 2019.

During ILGA World, Tīwhanawhana held the first ever Indigenous Pre-Conference, and also hosted the largest Pasifika Rainbow+ Pre-Conference with representatives from 13 Pacific countries. Tīwhanawhana are actively in solidarity with Pasifka Rainbow+ leaders here and in the Pacific. Standing for the Pacific role acknowledges shared histories and ancestral links across the Pacific, within a vision of liberation for all people with diverse genders, sexualities and sex characteristics.

Elizabeth’s belief is with Māori (Indigenous) traditions and spirituality that is rooted in the earth, sky and sea, handed down by our ancestors and connected to multiple deities and energies. She plays a spiritual and healing role in Rainbow communities. Through her beliefs, Elizabeth also creates Māori cultural and spiritual frameworks for strategic planning and project planning.

www.elizabethkerekere.com (new website – adding content)


Joey Joleen Mataele

Region: Pacific

Ms Joey Joleen Mataele is from the Kingdom of Tonga and has a range of experience, involving the running of running her own business, as a professional Singer, Entertainer, Event Planner and a single parent of 3 adopted children.

Founder/Director Miss Galaxy Queen Pageant to raise awareness and visibility and to support our community. Currently the Executive Director/Co-founder of the Tonga Leiti’s Association (TLA) that has been operating for 31 years & Co-Founder of the Pacific Sexual Gender Diversity Network (PSGDN)


1996 Awarded the with the Silver Jubilee Medal by His Late Majesty King Taufa’ahau Tupou 1V – Humanitarian Work with the Disability and Sexual Minority Groups.

2008 Awarded with the “Order Of Queen Salote” Medal during His Late Majesty King George Tupou V’s Coronation – Services for the Royal Family.

2016 Nominated for the US Secretary Head of State Women of Courage Award.

2017 Nominated for the APCOM Hero Transgender Award.


Region: Sub-Saharan Africa

Enosh Abuya

Region: Sub-Saharan Africa

Enosh Abuya is a dedicated human rights activist with a profound commitment to advancing the civil, political, and social rights of sexual and gender minorities (SOGIE). With over eight years of experience in human rights advocacy, Enosh Abuya has become a prominent advocate for the marginalized, emphasizing their deep understanding of international human rights law and policies.

Enosh Abuya’s educational path has provided him with a strong foundation for their advocacy work. In 2014, He earned a degree in Business Administration from Kisii University, delving into subjects like economics, law, and finance, which equipped them with a comprehensive understanding of the complex socio-economic factors affecting marginalized communities.

In 2020, Enosh Abuya further enriched his knowledge and skills by obtaining a Master’s degree in Public Relations and Diplomacy from Mount Kenya University, specializing in Public International Relations. This academic journey broadened his horizons and exposed them to various fields, including public relations, diplomacy, and international law, providing a robust framework for human rights advocacy.

To complement his academic achievements, Enosh Abuya pursued additional training, obtaining certificates in Gender Sensitive Governance, HIV law, computer skills, computer studies, and project management. These certifications have expanded their expertise, allowing them to address the multifaceted challenges faced by marginalized communities with a well-rounded approach.

Enosh Abuya’s career journey has been marked by impactful roles. Since November 2015, I’ve held the position of Executive Director at The Eagles for Life Kenya (TEFL-K) LGBTI-led organization, a role where they have provided strategic leadership, directed program implementation, and represented the organization on local and international stages. Under their guidance, TEFL-K has flourished and made significant strides in its mission.

Before taking the helm at TEFL-K, Enosh Abuya served as the Program Manager at the organization, where they played a crucial role in program development, contributing to the success of various initiatives. Additionally, they briefly served as a Research Coordinator at the Kenya Red Cross, where they conducted focused group discussions, collecting valuable insights and recommendations to enhance programs.

A testament to Enosh Abuya’s multifaceted expertise, they have excelled in various areas, including financial management, grant writing, staff supervision, and the implementation of strategic plans. They have secured substantial grants, managed budgets effectively, and empowered teams to achieve success.

Beyond their professional achievements, Enosh Abuya has taken innovative approaches to promote mental health and emotional well-being, particularly among LGBTQ+ individuals of faith in Kenya. They have been a bridge builder, leading dialogue initiatives between religious leaders and LGBTI persons of faith, promoting understanding and acceptance.

Additionally, Enosh Abuya has significantly contributed to the human rights cause by submitting reports to the United Nations Universal Periodic Review on LGBTI issues in Kenya. His work has helped shed light on the issues faced by sexual minorities in the country and has advanced the dialogue at an international level.

Hamlet Nkwain

Region: Sub-Saharan Africa

Hamlet Nkwain is a passionate Cameroonian human rights activist specializing in the protection of the rights of sexual and gender minority individuals.

With a strong commitment to grassroots empowerment, policy advocacy, and driving social change, Hamlet has dedicated years to advancing human rights issues at both national and international levels.

Emphasizing inclusivity, Hamlet recognizes the importance of spirituality in the lives of sexual and gender minority individuals and offers spiritual guidance and leadership, ensuring that nobody is cut off from the realm of religion and spirituality due to their sexual orientation or identity.

As a dynamic force for positive change, Hamlet continues to champion the rights of sexual and gender minority individuals, leaving an indelible impact on the fight for equality and inclusion.

Wanjiru Kariuki

Region: Sub-Saharan Africa

Wanjiru Kariuki is an esteemed community advocate, seasoned human rights defender and a passionate self-identifying feminist with a decade-long dedication to championing the inclusion and rights of Lesbians, Bisexuals, and Queer individuals.

Notably, she has contributed significantly to the Pema Kenya board, serving as both a member and consecutive chair for two terms between 2018 and 2022.

With a background in counselling psychology, peer counselling and professional training for instance as a LILO facilitator, Wanjiru has effectively represented LBQ affairs within the organization, and also well conversant with equitable and comprehensive involvement in gender and sexual minority faith, spirituality and gender impactful initiatives.



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