Meet the people behind the scenes at AAI

Kofi Appenteng, Chairperson

President & CEO

appenteng_kofi_color-thumbnailKofi Appenteng is the President & CEO of the Africa-America Institute. He previously served as AAI’s Chair of the Board of Trustee, Chair of the board’s Governance Committee and a member of the Audit & Finance and Development committees.

Previously, Appenteng was senior counsel at Dentons, a partner at Thacher Proffitt & Wood LLP. He joined Thacher Proffitt in 1991 and became a partner in 1994. He had a general corporate practice there and was a member of the Corporate and Financial Institutions Practice Group. Before joining Thacher Proffitt, he was an associate at Webster & Sheffield.

Appenteng is the chairman of the Ford Foundation and the International Center for Transitional Justice, Inc. He is a director of the Panbros Salt Industries Ltd. and Intravenous Infusions Ltd. He currently serves on the boards of the Instituto de Empresa Fund, Inc., the University of Cape Town Fund, Inc. (USA), and The World Scout Fund. Appenteng is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Born in Ghana, Appenteng attended preparatory and public schools in England. He came to the United States in 1977 to attend Wesleyan University and earned his law degree from the Columbia University School of Law.

Brian McGinley

Chief Development Officer & Vice President

Mikako Tai

Executive Assistant and Corporate Affairs Officer

Mikako Tai joined AAI as Executive Assistant in Fall 2011. She provides direct programmatic and administrative support to the President & CEO, and is involved in the planning, organization, and execution of “all things AAI.” As Corporate Affairs Officer, Mikako manages information and work flow, and effectively manages all requests from the Office of the President. Mikako is the go-to person for all AAI stakeholders, including the Board of Trustees, sponsors, partners, program beneficiaries, and staff in both Africa and the U.S.

Mikako graduated from Wesleyan University with honors in the College of Social Studies (CSS). Her childhood admiration for the African continent led Mikako to pursue a lifelong interest in working on African issues. She lived in Kenya for six months immersing herself in local cultures and conducting fieldwork in the rural parts of the Swahili coast. A native of Japan with extensive international experience, Mikako is a firm believer in the mission of AAI and enjoys working there with her globally-minded colleagues. She speaks Japanese, Kiswahili, and Mandarin and is open to learning other languages.

Omoy S. Lungange

Office Manager

Omoy S. Lungange is the Office Manager at the Africa-America Institute, with responsibility for research development, vendor relations and administrative duties assigned by the Office of the President. She also assists with organizing the digital archives and event planning activities. Creative and a passionate advocate for the growth of Africa within the global community with emphasis on sustainable development and educational betterment, one of her greatest assets is her ability to connect with people. Ms. Lungange possess a strong interest in strengthening human capacity, as well as, the patience, dedication, motivation, and multicultural sensitivity needed to achieve great results. Ms. Lungange earned an M.A. in International Affairs from Milano the New School for International Affairs, Management and Urban Policy.

To contact AAI, please click here.



  • Finance & Administration – Kiwi Partners Inc.
  • Transformational Leadership Program – Melissa Howell, Social Impact Design Studios
  • Government Affairs Representative – Austin Cooper
  • Communications and Media – Shanta Bryant Gyan, SBG Communications
  • AAI Future Leaders Legacy Fund Gala – Dorothy Davis, Diasporan Touch
  • AAI Future Leaders Legacy Fund Gala – Aaron Consulting
  • State of Education in Africa conference – Vanessa Wakeman, The Wakeman Agency