The Aquaya team combines experience in applied research,
technology development, and business management.

Ranjiv Khush

Co-founder and Executive Director

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Ranjiv guides Aquaya’s development as a leading research and consulting organization dedicated to effective water quality management in developing countries. Ranjiv brings a science and technology-focused approach to Aquaya that builds on extensive basic research and policy experience. Ranjiv co-founded Aquaya in 2005 following a Fellowship with the Office of the Science and Technology Advisor to the U.S. Secretary of State. Previously he was a research scientist at Stanford University and the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique in Paris, France.

Ranjiv holds a PhD degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz and MS and BS degrees from the University of California, Davis.

Rachel Peletz

Director of Programs

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Rachel studies policies and practices that promote effective water quality monitoring and management. Previously, Rachel was a Research Fellow and Doctoral student at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She has also worked as an International Technical Advisor for the Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology (CAWST) in Canada and studied ecological sanitation in India, ceramic filters in Ghana, and ultra-violet water disinfection in Haiti.

Rachel has a PhD degree from the London School of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, a Masters of Engineering degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and a BS degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.

Jeff Albert

Co-founder and Deputy Project Director, WASHPaLS

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In September 2016 Jeff returned to Aquaya’s management team as the Deputy Chief-of-Party for the USAID-funded WASHPaLS project. From January 2015 to August 2016 Jeff was the Vice President for WASH Programs at Thrive Networks/East Meets West, where he oversaw $20M+ in WASH programming. His 15+ years of experience in water also include water reclamation and efficiency in irrigated agriculture and hydrologic cycle aspects of climate change. In addition to his time at Aquaya from 2005 to 2013, Jeff also worked on the evaluation of a $200M US-funded water/wastewater program in the Kingdom of Jordan. In 2004-05, he was a AAAS Science and Technology Fellow at the Office of the Global Change Research Program the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, where he was awarded a Bronze Medal for his work on drinking water in response to the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami. From 2002 to 2004, he held a joint faculty appointment with the Center for Environmental Studies and the Department of Geological Sciences at Brown University. He was also a Visiting Scholar at Brown’s Watson Institute of International Studies during that time.

Jeff holds a PhD from Yale University and a AB degree with honors from Brown University.

Tari Lewis


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Tari overseas financial plans, policies and reporting, human resources and treasury management. Prior to working for Aquaya, she was the chief financial officer of the National Police Foundation in Washington D.C. She also worked in tax in public accounting for a top four accounting firm consulting with for profit and nonprofit organizations in connection with tax research, reporting, and transaction planning. She led numerous training sessions in the area of nonprofit taxation. Publications include tax newsletters, articles and IRS private letter rulings. She is currently studying disruptive and innovative technologies for finance, enterprise and social use cases.

Tari is a certified public accountant and has a BS degree from The Ohio State University.

Alicea Easthope-Frazer

Senior Operations Manager

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Alicea manages operational activities for Aquaya, including: human resources, travel and safety, IT, and general dissemination. In addition, she supports Aquaya’s fellowship program, AquayaLEARN. Alicea was previously based in the Nairobi office, assisting with research field team management and technology support with phone data collection and mapping. Prior to working for Aquaya, she was focused on chemical water quality in Southeast Asia, studying arsenic and other heavy metal levels in Cambodia and China. Her experience in the Peace Corps in El Salvador contributes to her excitement of working with under-served populations.

Alicea holds a Masters of Science degree in Environmental Earth System Science from Stanford University and a BA degree in Environmental Chemistry from Skidmore College.

Caroline Delaire

Deputy Director of Technology and Innovation

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Caroline analyzes policies and approaches for water quality monitoring, sanitation, and fecal sludge management. Previously, Caroline was a doctoral student at UC Berkeley where she studied how to improve access to safe water in West Bengal, India. Specifically, she investigated a low-cost technology to remove arsenic and bacteria from groundwater, and analyzed drivers of household behavior change in rural communities. She did her civil service in a non-profit assisting asylum seekers and illegal immigrants in Paris.

Caroline has a PhD and a MS degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley, and an Engineering Diploma (BS and MS level) from the Ecole Polytechnique in France.

Morris Mwangi

Senior Finance Manager

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Morris manages all of Aquaya’s finances, encompassing accounting, compliance, budgeting, financial reporting and analysis. Prior to Aquaya, Morris hailed from the manufacturing sector working in administration and finance & accounting departments for over 10 years. Most recently he worked at Skanem Interlabels Nairobi Ltd. where he served as a financial controller.

Morris is a Certified Public Accountant in Kenya, he attended the Catholic University of Eastern Africa where he graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce degree and is currently pursuing his MBA on a part-time basis at Kenyatta University.

John Trimmer

Senior Research & Program Manager 

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John concentrates on developing and supporting Aquaya’s research programs related to sanitation outcomes, economics, and markets in urban and rural areas. He also contributes to research related to safe water management and WASH data science. Previously, John was a postdoctoral research associate and doctoral student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he studied global possibilities associated with resource recovery from sanitation, with particular focus on sustainability and suitability in resource-limited contexts such as informal settlements in Kampala, Uganda. John also served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uganda, helping to develop water, sanitation, and school infrastructure programs with Brick by Brick Uganda.

John has a PhD in Environmental Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, an MS in Environmental Engineering from the University of South Florida, and a BS in Civil & Environmental Engineering from Bucknell University.

Jessica Tribbe

Research & Program Manager 

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Jessica works on research and programs to strengthen implementation of water, sanitation, and hygiene interventions. She is interested in delivering more context-specific, community-focused policy solutions, and understanding how technology and innovation can drive access to water and sanitation for all.

Prior to joining Aquaya, Jessica was on UNICEF’s Product Innovation team, where she worked with private sector partners on new and improved products for UNICEF’s WASH programs, including improved sanitation solutions for people with disabilities in humanitarian settings, and user-friendly products to support water quality monitoring by communities and local governments. She has also worked on national-level political campaigns in the U.S., women’s rights and mHealth projects in India, and systems strengthening for Malawi’s agriculture sector.

Jessica has a BA in Diplomacy and Foreign Affairs from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and a Masters of Public Affairs from Sciences Po in Paris, France.

Chloé Poulin

Research & Program Manager 

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Chloé is working on data analysis and research to improve microbiological water quality. In addition, she is investigating new technologies and models which can be developed in Africa to improve water quality and water quality monitoring. Previously she was a doctoral student at Aix Marseille University where she worked on historical and current groundwater recharge in Lake Chad Basin, and interactions between surface water and groundwater.

Chloé has a PhD in Environmental Sciences from Aix Marseille University and a Master’s degree in Hydrogeology and Bachelor’s degree in Geosciences from the University of Montpellier.

Katherine Marshall

Research & Program Officer

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Katherine supports Aquaya’s water quality monitoring and safe water management research by helping to manage program activities in Uganda. Prior to joining Aquaya, she worked on water supply projects with a focus on groundwater development and point source infrastructure. As a Peace Corps Volunteer, she helped to assess and improve non-piped water supply access in urban and rural communities of Northern Uganda. Additionally, as a Master’s student, she evaluated a low-cost technology (handpump) appropriate for accessing shallow groundwater.

Katherine has a MS degree in Engineering Science (Environmental Engineering concentration) from the University of South Florida and a BS degree in Geology from the College of Charleston.


Joyce Kisiangani

Research & Program Officer 

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Joyce focuses on strengthening Aquaya’s qualitative research on water quality monitoring and management. She also contributes to quantitative research and project implementation. Previously, Joyce was a research fellow through the School for Field Studies, Boston University where she studied the health impact of the Kenyan Community Health Strategy. She has also worked as a researcher under Funzo Kenya, a USAID funded program.

Joyce holds an MPH degree from Moi University and a BSc. degree in Microbiology from Moi University in Eldoret, Kenya.

Kara Stuart

Research & Program Officer

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Kara works on data analysis and research across many of Aquaya’s ongoing projects. Prior to working with Aquaya, she gained experience with both centralized and decentralized wastewater treatment, working with a California wastewater treatment plant, and conducting research on various onsite waste treatment systems. Kara also has experience managing projects for disadvantaged communities in California with impaired domestic water supplies, and monitoring and reporting of farmers’ domestic and irrigation wells to State regulators.

Kara holds a MS degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of California, Davis with an emphasis in water and wastewater treatment, and a BA degree in Environmental Studies and Earth Science from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Jessie Press-Williams

Research & Program Officer

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Jessie supports Aquaya’s program execution, research, and development across the Monitoring for Safe Water activities in Ghana. She also assists development of Aquaya’s Technology and Innovation practice line to evaluate innovations and emerging service delivery models for water and sanitation improvement in low-resource settings. Previously, Jessie worked as an Engineer and Project Manager for BURN Manufacturing, leading development of innovative clean cooking products in Kenya. She also worked as an Associate with IDinsight in Zambia, where she conducted research and provided advisory and consulting services to social sector practitioners, NGOs, and governments.

Jessie has a BS degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a focus on development economics and appropriate technologies for developing countries.

John Orapa

Staff Accountant

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John supports all accounting activities in our Nairobi office, including full preparation, entry and management of all bills, checks, invoices and advances. He also assists in ensuring timely preparation of Aquaya’s financial reports. Prior to joining Aquaya, John was a Financial Trainer with Africa (YES) Young Entrepreneurs Support, training social entrepreneurs in setting up sound financial systems. He also worked as a Consultant with several donor funded projects including USAID and DSW. John contributes articles to The Accountant Journal of Kenya on corporate governance and other emerging issues in the financial sector.

John is a Certified Public Accountant of Kenya and a member of The Institute of Certified Public Accountant of Kenya. He holds a Bachelor of Science in International Business Administration from United States International University (Africa).

Edinah Samuel

Research Assistant

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Edinah supports the research programs through both qualitative and quantitative data collection, desk reviews, data management, and data analysis. Edinah started at Aquaya as an AquayaLEARN fellow in 2018. Prior to joining Aquaya, Edinah was a Research Fellow at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag) under the Eawag Partnership Program for Developing Countries. Her master thesis is contributing to the Eawag Environmental Social Sciences Department as part of the Sustainability Transitions of Sanitation Regimes in Urban Africa (SuSARA project) in Nairobi, Kenya.

Edinah is currently finalizing her Master’s degree in Environmental Planning and Management at Kenyatta University. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science from Egerton University.

Brian Mwangi

Research Assistant

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Brian supports research programs by developing data analytic applications, which help drive faster and informed decision making. He is also involved in field work activities such as conducting interviews and focused group discussions, data management, data analysis and report writing. Brian is passionate about turning data into actionable insights and believes the future belongs to people and companies that turn data into products.

Brian holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics and Computer Science (Applied Math Option) from the Multimedia University of Kenya.

Bashiru Yachori

Research Assistant

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Bashiru supports Aquaya’s Monitoring for Safe Water (MfSW) research by helping to manage program activities in Ghana. Prior to joining Aquaya, he worked on various projects with a focus on water quality monitoring and water safety management. As a District Water and Sanitation Team leader with Mion District Assembly in the northern region of Ghana, Bashiru strove to engage the private sector in providing clean water to residents. Bashiru also trained Water and Sanitation Management Teams (WSMTs) on the operation, revenue generation and maintenance of water facilities. In the past, Bashiru has worked with women to found chlorinating businesses to provide affordable, clean water in communities.

Bashiru holds an MPhil degree in Development Planning and Management and a Bachelor’s degree in Integrated Community Development from the University for Development Studies, Ghana.

Valentina Zuin | Affiliated Expert

Professor, Yale-NUS College

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Valentina is interested in improving water and sanitation services for the urban poor. Her research and work experience cover institutional development, policy development, evaluation, and project management, with a particular focus on informal sector provision, water regulation, and institutional models of service delivery for the poor. She has been involved in redefinition of institutional arrangements in the water and sanitation sector in Mozambique.

Valentina is an academic collaborator with Aquaya and is currently also working as a Post-doctoral Fellow at Yale-NUS College in Singapore. Valentina has worked in Latin America (Brazil, Ecuador, and Peru), Sub-Saharan Africa (Mozambique, Angola, Benin, and Ghana), and South Asia (India). Valentina’s experience includes working with the Water and Sanitation Program of the World Bank in Maputo, Mozambique, and as an Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies at Ashoka University in New Delhi.

Valentina has a PhD from the Emmet Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources at Stanford University, a Master’s in International Development and Regional Planning from MIT, and an undergraduate degree in Public Management and International Relations from Bocconi University, in Italy.

Salim Haji

Salim Haji | Affiliated Expert

Principal, Sierranna Partners

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Since March 2005, Salim has been an independent management consultant. Prior to becoming an independent consultant, he was Senior Vice President of Strategy at MacDermid, a ~$700M global specialty chemical company based in Denver, CO. Prior to joining MacDermid in 2003, Salim was a Vice-President and Partner at Oliver Wyman (formerly SPA), a leading strategy consultancy with over 2, 500 consultants in 40 offices around the world. In 2007 Salim also founded Distributors Solutions LLC (“DSI”) to serve as a co-op purchasing organization for the ~500 independently owned and operated distributors of MillerCoors brands around the country. Between his time at Oliver Wyman and MacDermid, Salim spent a year as a Visiting Fulbright Professor at a business school in Tanzania (East Africa), where he lectured on Corporate Strategy and Economics.

Salim holds an MBA from Stanford University and a BA degree, magna cum laude, in Economics and Development Studies from Brown University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa.

Aquaya has studied and optimized water quality testing strategies in low-resource settings for over 10 years. We are happy to provide insights to help your organization develop or improve a monitoring program. Please reach out by contacting us.

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