Will is the Co-Founder & Executive Director of Monrovia Football Academy, the first school in Liberia to combine formal education with professional football development. Inspired by his participation in the 2013 Liberian Peace & Reconciliation football match and President Sirleaf’sacknowledgment that Liberia’s education system is ‘a mess’, Will co-founded Liberia’s first football school to create new opportunities for Liberia’s talented boys and girls. As the Executive Director of the Academy, Will oversees the school’s operations in Liberia, manages all fundraising and outreach activities, and establishes partnerships with academic and football institutions both in Liberia and abroad.
In addition to his work at Monrovia Football Academy, Will has consulted for multiple sport for social change organizations in Cote d’Ivoire, Rwanda, and the UK. He speaks internationally on social entrepreneurship and sport for development, most recently at the Oxford Africa Conference, a FIFA conference in Dubai, and the College of William & Mary. His talks advocate for a radical rethinking of international development, emphasizing the need for more locally-driven solutions and the accurate and just representation of the African continent.
Will holds an MSc in African Studies from the University of Oxford, BA's in Government and French from the College of William & Mary, and a degree in social entrepreneurship from Santa Clara University. He splits his time between Liberia and the United States.
Graham M. Albert
Graham was a student-athlete at the College of William & Mary from 1999-2003. He enjoyed both team and individual success at the highest level of American college soccer, earning Division 1 Scholar All-American honors his senior year. In addition to his background as a player, Graham has always been passionate about soccer coaching, development, education, and administration. His father, Al Albert, is a hall-of-fame college soccer coach and former President of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. Graham lives and works in New York City as a financial analyst at MP Securitized Credit Partners, an investment fund specializing in mortgage bonds. He wants to leverage his connections and professional experience to help MFA leadership achieve their ambitious goals on and off the field.
Jenkins S. Vangehn
Jenkins is a highly accomplished political analyst who attended the University of Ghana. He currently works as the Political Specialist at U.S. Embassy Monrovia, and his position there has helped him build an impressive network that includes government officials, business people, and civil society members. Jenkins has already played a vital role for MFA, as he has been able to connect Will with countless partners on the ground. In the coming months, he will continue to be an important resource as MFA moves through its second academic year.
Richard P. Fahey
Rich served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Liberia during the 1960s. He then returned to the United States for graduate school, earning his JD from Northwestern University. He subsequently specialized in Environmental, Energy, and Natural Resources law for more than 35 years. In 2010, he retired from one career and started another, attending Harvard University as an Advanced Leadership Fellow. That experience gave rise to a new organization called the Liberian Energy Network (LEN), which distributes solar lights to businesses, schools, and families in Monrovia. As the Founder and CEO of LEN, Rich travels periodically to Monrovia to ensure LEN continues its move to scale. Rich has already devoted a large amount of time to MFA, and his experience working in Monrovia will certainly provide important insights as MFA moves forward.
Sekou Dgeorges Manubah
Georgie is the Co-Founder & Director of Football at MFA. At a young age, he quickly rose through the Liberian ranks, catching the eye of various clubs from around the world. His first three professional stints would bring him to Oman, where he played as a center midfielder for Al-Seeb FC, Al-Tali'aa FC, and Al-Salam SC. After he left Oman, Georgie pursued a new opportunity in Vietnam, where he played for Binh Duong FC. Before returning to Liberia in 2015, he was in Myanmar playing for Hantharwady United.
Throughout his professional career, Georgie periodically returned home to represent the Liberian national team. In addition, he consistently gave back to his local community by coaching local youth teams. In April 2016, Georgie received his FIFA 'C' coaching license, and he aspires to attain an 'A' license by 2020. Georgie is excited to be fulfilling his lifelong dream of coaching at the first football school in Liberia.
Robtel Neajai Pailey
Robtel Neajai Pailey (http://www.robtelneajaipailey.com) is a Liberian academic, activist and author of the anti-corruption children’s book, Gbagba. With over a decade of combined professional experiences in Africa, Europe and North America, she has consulted across a broad range of fields while supporting universities, governments, NGOs, media institutions, regional and multilateral agencies. Robtel previously served as special assistant for communications to Liberia’s president, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, as well as an adjunct instructor at the University of Liberia and Stella Maris Polytechnic. An increasingly sought after thought leader and public scholar, Robtel has provided expert commentary for radio, print, television, and online news media across the globe and her research, writing and analysis have appeared in academic journals, edited book volumes, newspapers and magazines.
Robtel completed BA degrees in African Studies and English Literature at Howard University, an MSc in African Studies at the University of Oxford and a PhD in Development Studies at SOAS, University of London. Robtel currently serves as a senior researcher at the University of Oxford’s International Migration Institute (IMI), Department of International Development.
Saycon Sengbloh is an award-winning actress whose riveting performance as Wife Number One in Eclipsed at The Public Theater earned her an Obie Award and Drama Desk Award, as well as a Tony Award nomination on the Broadway stage. Eclipsed is a critically acclaimed play that was the first in Broadway history to feature a story on Liberian women during the civil war.
Saycon will be seen as Nora in the upcoming feature film Double Play by Ernest Dickerson. She has also starred in the Broadway productions of Holler If Ya Hear Me, Motown the Musical, Fela!, Wished, Aida, The Color Purple, Hair, and the nation tour of Rent. Saycon originated the roles of Rita Marlet in Marley at Baltimore Center Stage and Toyia in Katori Hall's Hurt Village (NYC). Television/film credits include Good Wife (CBS) and The Night Of (HBO), American Gangster (Universal Pictures) and Funny Valentine (BET Starz).
Saycon attend Agnes Scott College and is a longtime advocate for education, girls, and underprivileged children in Liberia. She is eager to use her platform as a successful actress/artist to support the Academy and serve as a role model for our female student-athletes.
Musa Shannon is a former member of the Liberian national team who starred in Division 1 college soccer at Robert Morris University before playing professionally in the MLS, Portugal, and China. Since 2010, Musa has served as Vice-President of the Liberia Football Association. He also runs one of the most popular beach resorts in Liberia, Nana's Beach Resort, located in Robertsport City.
Musa's background as a student-athlete created the foundation for his belief in the ability of sport and education to transform the lives of young people – especially in his country, Liberia, where a quality education is a rare commodity. As a former footballer and current football administrator, Musa is keen to change the definition of success for athletically gifted boys and girls in Liberia. He is excited to help bring the Academy from the start-up phase to sustainability.