AVRI Governance & Accountability

A strong governance structure is in place to ensure successful delivery of the Research activities supported by AVRI. The AVRI Board consists of eye and health care professionals of high caliber and who are well skilled and profound researchers and academics. Their leadership and input drive the overarching strategic vision for the institution and informs operational decision-making.  

Prof Hannah Faal
Professor Hannah Faal

Professor Faal oversees the activities of the board and ensures that decisions are taken in line with the principles, policies and mandate of the board. 

Born in Calabar, Nigeria, Professor Faal received The Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh in 1975. She relocated to The Gambia in 1980 and as the sole opthamologist, she served a population of 800 000. Professor Faal has served as the President of International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) and an advisor to the World Health Organisation. 

Active in research, she has authored over 60 publications with over 2000 citations and is a reviewer for journals. In 2011, she took on Adjunct Professorship in International Eye Health in Nigeria. She is currently a Trustee of the Moorfields Korle Bu Trust, member Scientific Advisory Board of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust and Global Advisory Board of Our Children's Vision. 

The following board members are responsible for the overall management, finances, and activities of the Board, and has oversight of the institutions integrity and quality of work: 

Dr Fatima
Dr Fatima Kyari
Board Member

Dr Kyari is a consultant opthamologist and founder of the Centre for Community and Rural Eye Care (ICare). She obtained her MBBS from the Ahmadu Bello University, MSc and PhD degrees from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). Dr Kyari was the Head of the Department of Community Opthamology, National Eye Centre, Kaduna. She is a member of numerous professional associations and NGOs including, the ICEH (UK), ISGEO, IAPB, LSHTM Alumni Association, AOC and ICO. She is on the Editorial Committee for the Community Eye Health Journal at LSHTM and The World Report on Vision, WHO. Dr Kyari is a Commissioner of the Lancet Commission on Global Eye Health 2019-2020. She has published in numerous international journals and presented at international conferences.

Dr Diane
Dr Diane van Staden
Board Member

Dr van Staden is a DRILL (Developing Research Innovation Localisation and Leadership) Postdoctoral Fellow with an interest in Health Professions Education and Quantitative research. She has served the profession of Optometry in various capacities both within and outside of academia. Her passion for the advancement of eye health services and has led to her contributing to the development of several schools of Optometry on the African continent. Dr van Staden is the Academic Leader of Teaching and Learning within the School of Health Sciences and was a former Academic Leader of Optometry at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. 

Prof Kovin Naidoo
Board Member

Recognising the need to develop research capacity in Africa, Professor Naidoo initiated the formation of AVRI. He is an academic, anti-apartheid activist and political prisoner, optometrist and an internationally celebrated Public Health leader. Professor Naidoo is the Senior Vice President in the Social Impact Division at Essilor, Honorary Professor of Optometry at UKZN, Visiting Professorial Fellow the University of New South Wales and Adjunct Faculty at Salus University, Philadelphia. He was African Optometrist of the Year in 2002 and International Optometrist of the Year in 2007. He has served on the 2019 WHO "World Report on Vision" editorial committee. He is the Founder and Chair of African Vision and former chair of the Red Cross Air Mercy Services Board of Trustees. Professor Naidoo was the former CEO of Brien Holden Vision Institute. 

Staff Members

The CEO is responsible for embedding sustainability principles within the institution and delivering strategy and leadership, promoting research development, overall management and monitoring of research activities, engagement with research collaborators and partners, community partnerships and communications in support to the Board. The AVRI CEO implements the strategic goals and objectives of the institution and together with the chair, enables the Board to fulfill its governance function. The CEO gives direction and demonstrates leadership towards the achievement of the institutions vision, mission, strategy, and its annual research goals and objectives.

Prof Mashige
Prof Khathushelo Percy Mashige

Professor Mashige is a Professor in the School of Health Sciences at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. He has established and developed close relations with scientific organisations and academics in South Africa and abroad through AVRI and also through the African Eye and Public Health Research Institute (AEPRI). Professor has been rated by the National Research Foundation (NRF) as an established researcher with a sustained recent record of productivity in his field, having produced a body of quality work; and has demonstrated the ability to conceptualise the problems and apply research methods to investigating them. He is an Associate Editor of the UK-based Journal, BMC Ophthalmology and serves on the Editorial Advisory Committee of the South African Health Review Journal. He has been recognised by the South African Optometric Association for significant achievement in the pursuit, advancement or application of science. He has published widely both locally and internationally. 

Dr Jyoti Naidoo
Dr Jyoti Naidoo
Research Manager

 Dr Jyoti Naidoo is the Research Manager for the African Vision Research Institute. She holds a Master’s Degree in Geography and a Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Geography and Environmental Management. Her role includes operational management of the institute, development and implementation of administration processes for student registration, research support, research conceptualization; conducting research from inception to completion and beyond (publications); postgraduate research supervision; and developing and facilitating research training modules to students recruited via AVRI for the University. She has successfully co-supervised and graduated PhD and master's students and has collaborated with numerous research academics around the world and have sole authored and co-authored on a range of peer reviewed publications (published in International Journals), commissioned systematic reviews (not peer reviewed) and an international book chapter. Dr Naidoo has also developed teaching materials and have conducted research workshops as well as facilitated research training on an Introduction to Research Methodology, an Introduction to Scientific Writing, and a manual on Data Management.