During a trip this month to the United States, Kadir Salami visited with his colleagues and friends here at CGNET headquarters in Mountain View, CA. The visit, which included a very American lunch of sandwiches and pizza, marked his 5th year acting as our Senior IT Consultant and major resource in his home base of Abuja, Nigeria. With assignments over the years with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the MacArthur Foundation and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, Salami has been an essential asset to CGNET.
Salami has extensive experience in the field of IT, particularly as it pertains to the specific challenges faced by public sector organizations and developing countries. In 2013, he and members of his team, on behalf of CGNET, set up the IT infrastructure for the first Gates Foundation site in Africa, in Abuja. That office has grown from approximately 5 to 40 people over the 5 year span. Salami and his team currently take care of all of the daily help desk activities, software and update rollouts, installation and maintenance of servers, routers, firewalls, phone system and more.
Aside from his work for CGNET — and that of being a father to 3 very young children – Salami also runs his own consulting firm, Techspecialist Consulting Ltd. No ordinary IT consulting firm, in 2017 he and his partners opened the Techspecialist Academy. Through 7-week “boot camp” courses — with room and board included — Nigerian students are given hands-on, practice-based training in such areas as mobile development, web development and systems administration. And at the completion of the boot camp, trainees are encouraged to participate in job placement activities with local technology firms. According to their website, the academy is “committed to prioritizing hands-on technological skill acquisition that will improve the quality and market competitiveness of indigenous IT professionals, thereby effectively bridging the gap between local resources and their foreign counterparts”.
Keep up your amazing work, Salami! And of course, if you can find time in your extremely busy schedule, be sure to come see your friends at CGNET HQ again soon!