Year Joined MKLM: 2018
Focus: Sustainable Development
Project(s): Business Advisor for Diocese of Musoma
Goals of Ministry: Improve business practices to provide for sustainable business growth to small businesses in Tanzania and develop opportunities for entrepreneurs.
My first assignment by the Musoma Diocese is to work with the diocesan book shop “Duka La Vitabu.” My role is to analyze the business, make recommendations for improvement and then work with the bookshop staff and diocesan leadership to implement business practices and systems to provide for growth and profitably. That includes an analysis of the bookshop business and the implementation of a series of recommendations.
The Diocese of Musoma has several business operations that I may work on in the future. In addition, there is a congregation of Tanzanian Sisters associated with the diocese who run a number of programs and businesses that I will be advising. The bookshop project is basically a test case for improving business operations in the Musoma area. Ultimately, my hope is that this work will lead to an improved, competitive business environment in this area that will bring in more employment opportunities,
My wife and I first were introduced to Maryknoll around 25 years ago by Father Art Wille MM, who gave a Sunday Mass church talk at our local parish in Cupertino, California. He served in Musoma, Tanzania for 60 years (1951—2011). We got to know Fr. Wille quite well and supported his many projects over the years. Fr. Wille’s legacy in the Musoma is massive and extensive. He built schools, churches and institutions throughout the entire Musoma area.
We learned of Maryknoll Lay Missioners through Maryknoll magazine. My wife and I were Peace Corps volunteer math and science teachers in The Gambia, West Africa, from 1973 to 1975. We often considered returning to Africa to serve others when we were at the point of retirement. In 2018, we applied to Maryknoll, seeking a role where we could do service.
My work experience background is comprised of 35 years in the semiconductor industry in operations, engineering and management in Santa Clara, California. Then I started my own businesses in real estate and construction for 10 more years. Providentially my wife and I were assigned to Musoma, Tanzania. I am with Maryknoll Lay Missioners for one simple reason: to leverage my life and work experience to serve and help others. Then I will go with wherever that takes me. Much of the future is not known as it is not easy and it is certainly challenging. Service to others gives life real meaning.