On March 31st, we said farewell to two colleagues: Associate Program Officer Alibek Otambekov and Program and Business Associate Ainura Ishenbekova.
Alibek joined The Christensen Fund in 2009 as our National Consultant, Tajikistan and helped not only to shape but to deepen our work in Tajikistan, providing invaluable inroads and insights. In 2018, he took a leadership role as an Associate Program Officer for the Central Asia Program where he led our work in our Innovative Dehkans subtheme. In this role, he continued to share his experience and expertise, always with a firm root in Tajikistan, and to build new connections and networks with our Partners around the world and in numerous global fora. He also helped to guide us in this past year of reflection—leading our consultations in Tajikistan—and providing key strategic framing as we transitioned our grantmaking from Regions to themes.
Ainura also joined us in 2009 and has provided an essential role as point person and organizer for our Central Asian Partners. Ainura’s gifts as an organizer helped to bring together a sense of community and shared work to the Region. She also brought her skills in business management and finance and provided important capacity-building to both staff and Partners. She enriched our institutional understanding of the administrative needs and realities of our partners and helped us to craft better and more responsive grants. Ainura not only shared her immense professional skills but also brought a deep generosity and steadiness to the team.
On behalf of The Christensen Fund, we wish both Alibek and Ainura every success in their new adventures and professional careers and look forward to when our paths cross again.