Ethiopian American Development Foundation

Welcome to The Ethiopian American Development Foundation

About Us


Our purpose

In 2017, we noticed that not enough effort wasn't being put behind helping Ethiopian Americans deal with the challenges associated with adapting to American life. We decided to take on the task of organizing efforts to build up the Ethiopian American community's capacity to deal with these challenges.



 Our mission is to assist the Ethiopian American community in becoming a well assimilated and proactive member of the broader population by providing an apolitical platform for members of the local community to use in order to solve local observable problems.



Our vision is to assist the Ethiopian American Community both locally and across the nation to improve the socioeconomic status of Ethiopian-Americans  through data integrated project based initiatives.   

Meet Our Team

Esayas Asefa


  Our Executive Director is a graduate of SJSU, where he obtained his BA in Economics in May 2018. Inspired by Ethiopian-Americans in his local area he cofounded the organization for the purpose of positively effecting the culture of Ethiopian Americans. Born in Sudan (to Ethiopian parents) and moving to the US at an early age he is a lifelong resident of San Jose. A soldier (Medic) in the US Army Reserves, he enjoys combat sports, exercising, Sunday liturgy, and reading books pertaining to Economics, Strategy, History, and Self Improvement.  

Selam Beyene


  Our Funds Director, a graduate of San Jose State University he majored in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance and where he was heavily involved with SJSU's HSA acting as the Treasurer. Notable accomplishments include being part of a team managing a fund of $60,000 and helped reach the goal of $100,000. He enjoys traveling, playing sports and is a long time warriors fan.   

Elias Ketema


 Director of Student Relations spent most of his high school years in Addis Ababa and is now a Junior at San Jose State University studying Aviation Management with a minor in Business. At SJSU he is in charge of student outreach for the Habesha Student Association and is an Operations Supervisor at Spartan Bowling Center. He was recognized as a rising star in the Addis Ababa basketball scene as a high school student.   

Michael Gelagay


 Our Media and Creative Director. He is a current junior at CSU Monterey Bay, majoring in Business Administration with a concentration in International Business and Management. Hobbies and interests include playing basketball, listening to music, and making short films.  

Mewael Tekle


Our Events Director he has nearly 10 years of experience in organizing and promoting events in the San Francisco Bay Area. His experience and knowledge is an asset to the efforts and mission of the Ethiopian American Development Foundation. He is an avid urban style dancer, and loves playing basketball. His light-heartedness, humility, and comedic inclinations make him an enjoyable person to be around.  

Huruy Zeratsion


A native of Tracy, California, is a soon to be graduate in Economics at SJSU can best be described as a “Renaissance Man.” An avid runner, he is a competitive Cross Country athlete for SJSU. He is musical artist, photographer, founder and owner of his own business (Blkkngs), and cryptocurrency investor and advocate. Needless to say he is a true asset to our team and community. 

Shishay Sebhatu


Our Project Director, brings a variety of experiences to the table. A long time resident of Oakland, Ca he is shaped by his experiences in Ethiopia, Eritrea, and the US. His background is primarily in Economic Policy, having worked in the office of the Vice Mayor of San Jose he is a visionary and pragmatist.