Donate Now

HFE Board

Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia Board & CEO

Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia has, for over 65 years, been dedicated to the treatment and prevention of obstetric fistula. Hamlin is the reference organization and leader in the fight to eradicate obstetric fistula.

The organization comprises six fistula hospitals including the world-famous Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital, the Hamlin Rehabilitation and Reintegration Center (Desta Mender), the Hamlin College of Midwives and over 90 Hamlin-supported midwifery clinics in rural Ethiopia. Patients at all Hamlin facilities are treated free of charge and students at the Hamlin College of Midwives study free of charge.

Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia’s governance and team is 100% Ethiopian with over 550 professionals working across the organization to deliver the Hamlin Model of Care for women with fistula.

Dr Catherine Hamlin AC - Founder

Dr Catherine Hamlin was an Australian obstetrician-gynecologist who went to Ethiopia over 65 years ago to train midwives with her husband Dr Reg Hamlin. Their attention soon turned to the plight of the obstetric fistula patients. Together, the Hamlins perfected the modern technique for obstetric fistula surgery and set up a network of hospitals in Ethiopia to help these women. So far, Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia has helped more than 70,000 women.

Dr Catherine Hamlin passed away in March 2020, at age 96. She was a Companion of the Order of Australia and was twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Dr Mengistu Asnake - Chair, Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia

Dr Mengistu has a medical degree from Gondar College of Medical Sciences and a master’s in public health from Addis Ababa University. He is a Public Health specialist with more than 35 years of experience in reproductive health, primary health care, child survival, community health services, program management, research and clinical service delivery. He served as the president of the Ethiopian public health Association (EPHA) from 2006-2009 and as a vice president and president for the World Federation of Public Health Association (WFPHA) from 2012-2016. Mengistu currently serves as the senior country director of Pathfinder International in Ethiopia. Pathfinder is one of the largest maternal health NGOs in the world and their program in Ethiopia is extensive. Mengistu was appointed to the Board of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia in 2015.

Dr Yigeremu Abebe Asemere - Deputy Chair & Director, Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia

Dr Yigeremu has a medical degree and a postgraduate diploma in internal medicine from the Addis Ababa University. He worked as a general practitioner whilst completing his postgraduate diploma. In 2006 Dr Yirgeremu was appointed the Country Director in Ethiopia for the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) leading a large program combat HIV/AIDS and other preventable and treatable diseases in Ethiopia. He recently retired from that position. Yigeremu was appointed to the Board of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia in 2015.

Dr Kebede Worku - Director, Hamlin FIstula Ethiopia

Dr Kebede Worku has a medical degree from Addis Ababa University and a strong background in Public Health programmatic and operational leadership. He is Senior Advisor to the Ethiopian Minister of Health. He was previously the State Minister for Health for Ethiopia and has previously served as a member of the Global Fund to fight AIDS, TB & Malaria; Chairperson of the African Constituency Bureau of the Global Fund, Chairperson of Tikur Anbessa Hospital (Black Lion Hospital), Chairperson of Ethiopia’s national Nutrition Coordination Body and he oversaw development and execution of Ethiopia’s national HIV prevention and control program. Kebede was appointed to the Board of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia in 2021.

Dr Mahlet Yigeramu Gebremariam - Director, Hamlin FIstula Ethiopia

Dr Mahlet Yigeremu Gebremariam is Consultant Specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University. She was previously Dean of School of Medicine Addis Ababa University and CEO of Tikur Anbessa Hospital (Black Lion Hospital). She is a dedicated advocate and researcher for sexual and reproductive health and rights. Mahlet was appointed to the Board of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia in 2021.

Ato Jemal Kassaw - Director, Hamlin FIstula Ethiopia

Ato Jemal Kassaw is Ethiopia Country Representative, EngenderHealth and has worked with the organisation for 16 years. He was previously HIV/AIDS Program Coordinator and Health and Nutrition Advisory to Canadian Physicians for Aid and Relief and he has served as Chair of the Board for the Consortium of Reproductive Health Associations (CORHA) and on the boards and advisory councils of a number of public health associations and advocates for gender equity and sexual and reproductive health and rights. Jemal was appointed to the Board of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia in 2021.

Tadelech Shiferaw - Director, Hamlin FIstula Ethiopia

Ms Tadelech Shiferaw is the Director of International Banking at Enat Bank S.C. in Ethiopia. Enat Bank S.C. was established by 11 visionary women to empower women financially. Previously, Tadelech’s previous roles were in banking and risk management in Ethiopia. Tadelech holds a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting from Addis Ababa University and a Master of Business Administration from Rift Valley University.  Tadelech was appointed to the Board of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia in 2021.

Ato Tesfaye Mamo, Chief Executive Officer

Ato Tesfaye brings over 20 years of experience in government and non-government organisations to his role. He has a Masters degree in Transformational Leadership & Change from the University of Greenwich, England and previously served as Managing Director of Tikur Anbessa Hospital (Black Lion Hospital). Tesfaye leads Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia’s operational and programmatic deliveries with the Senior Management Team. He commenced as Deputy CEO in 2018 and was appointed CEO in 2019. Tesfaye has a strong vision for the future of Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia.

Dr Yeshineh Demrew Yigezu, Medical Director

Dr Yeshineh oversees clinical operations at Hamlin’s Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital and five regional fistula hospitals across Ethiopia. He is also a FIGO (The International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics) certified trainer in Fistula Surgery. He began his career as a general practitioner in 1987 after graduating from the Gondar College of Medical Science. In 1997 he qualified as a specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Addis Ababa University and in 2019 he completed a senior fellowship in Urogynecology at Mekele University. Over the last 23 years he has become one of Ethiopia’s most respected Obstetrician-Gynaecologists. He spent 17 years working in hospitals in the Oromia region of Ethiopia including three years at Hamlin’s Regional Fistula Hospital in Metu. In 2015 he joined Hamlin’s Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital as an expert Obstetrician-Gynaecologist and Fistula Surgeon.

Ms Tigist Aman - Rehabilitation and Reintegration Manager, Desta Mender

Tigist has a BA in Educational Planning and Management; MA in Educational Leadership and Management and 24 years experience working in the humanitarian sector. She has been with Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia since 2009 as adult & non-formal education facilitator & learning coordinator. In her role as Rehabilitation and Reintegration Manager, she has been empowering patients to help them enhance their self-esteem, contribute in their communities and be self-sufficient to beat-up poverty.

Ms Konjit Kassahun - Dean of Hamlin College of Midwives & Prevention Manager

In 2021 Konjit was appointed Dean of the Hamlin College of Midwives with responsibility for Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia’s prevention strategy nationally. Konjit joined Hamlin in 2005 and held various clinical roles including serving four years as Matron of Hamlin’s Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital. Konjit She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing and a Master’s in Social Psychology from the Addis Ababa University. Konjit is a passionate advocate for both current students and graduates and is working to expand the prevention program and ensure all Hamlin midwives have the support they need to undertake their important work.


Sign up to our newsletter

Oxygen Works with any Contact Form Plugins...
All rights reserved 2023 Catherine Hamlin Foundation (R) (ABN58159647499)
Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation is fiscally sponsored by KBFUS (EIN582277856) and KBF Canada (RCO769784893RR0001)

Photography credits to Cameron Bloom, Nigel Brennan, Mary F. Calvert, Kate Geraghty, Amber Hooper, Joni Kabana, Johannes Remling and Martha Tadesse.

Patient names have been changed to protect the identities of those we help.