Assefa Ayalew joined JSI in 2004, when he was hired as a field officer for the Ethiopia Essential Services for Health project. Assefa, whose background was in public and environmental health, was a trainer and community health organizer. He was not only a hard worker and dedicated staff member; he was a generous and caring person who frequently surprised people with his great sense of humor.
Assefa was a family-centered person who gave everything he had to better the lives of others. Colleagues in Ethiopia miss Assefa greatly and recall his special presence at staff events, where he evoked laughter with his imitations and had an uncanny ability to energize the team.