Katie McGehee, a graduate of the University of Arkansas, attended ASLF as a sophomore in 2010. There she met one of the speakers, Dale Dawson, who is the founder and CEO of Bridge2Rwanda. As a poultry science major, she had an interest in providing solutions to the increasing food demands across the globe.
Dale introduced her to the technical advisors of the Ikiraro Poultry Farm in Rwanda, which was launched by Tyson Foods, Inc. After meeting with them, Katie was offered an internship in Musanze, Rwanda.
That summer she spent three months learning about the poultry industry in sub-Saharan Africa, improving inefficiencies at the farm, and fostering personal growth among the Rwandan staff members. This experience was combined with an internship at One Egg, Ikararo’s top customer whose focus is to implement animal protein into children’s diets through private sponsorship. She assisted preschools in registering for the One Egg program, delivered eggs to preschools and researched a better delivery solution, monitored the feeding site processes and procedures, and produced a One Egg promotional video.
She went on to work for poultry companies throughout sub-Sahara and serve as a technical advisor to Ikiraro Investments. She was also awarded a research grant from the U of A Honors College, which she used to study and write her thesis: The Transformation of Women on a Commercial Poultry Operation in Rwanda.
“I want to be a passionate problem solver for the agriculture industry,” Katie said. “I want to feed the nine billion people our planet will hold in less than fifty years, and I believe poultry in Africa will be my part in that inspiring task.”
Katie spent 5 years in the US after graduating from the University of Arkansas to learn and grow as an operations manager at Tyson Foods. She now resides in Rwanda once again and is the Executive Director for the African Sustainable Agriculture Project (ASAP), a foundation that is building poultry supply chains in sub-Sahara and now owns that egg farm in Rwanda that started her career.
You can learn more about ASAP at sustainableagafrica.org.