Board of Directors

Led by Bishop Rubin Phillip, SALO’s leadership is made up of a dynamic group of Board members assisted by  associates and a strong management team:

Chair: Bishop Rubin Phillip:

Bishop Emeritus of the Diocese of Natal, Former Dean of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa, Co-chair of the KZN Social Cohesion and Moral Regeneration Council.

The great-grandchild of indentured labourers, Bishop Rubin Phillip was the first South African of colour to hold the position of Anglican Bishop of the Diocese of Natal. He grew up in Clairwood, a suburb of Durban with a large concentration of poor people of mixed races. He entered the priesthood and was ordained Deacon at St Paul’s Church Durban in 1971, and a priest in 1972. He was consecrated Bishop by Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Cathedral of the Holy Nativity in 1995 and became the 9th Bishop of Natal in February 2000. Rubin Phillip was involved in the Black Consciousness Movement and was the Deputy President of the South African Student’s Organisation in 1969 when Steve Biko was President. He was a noted anti-apartheid activist and spent three years under house arrest in the 1970s. Bishop Phillip is a strong supporter of the struggles of the poor in South Africa, and has particularly supported the work of Durban-based shack dwellers movement, Abahlali baseMjondolo (AbM). In 2009, the Bishop was given the Bremen International Peace Award on the grounds of his work in the struggle against apartheid and his on-going work to offer solidarity to the displaced people, victims of persecutions and detainees. In 2010, he received the Diakonia award in recognition of his involvement with the anti-apartheid movement, his advocacy and involvement in the Zimbabwe crisis and his solidarity with AbM. He is committed to peace-making, reconciliation and mediation initiatives throughout the province, the region and globally.


Dr Charmaine Williamson

Dr Charmaine Williamson supervises the Finance Sub-Committee of the SALO Board and currently works in Higher Education as an academic, researcher, supervisor/advisor, academic advisor, teacher and facilitator of research development programmes. She completed her doctorate on strategies around international financing/ resource mobilisation, using organisational strategy and complexity theories within the context of strategies of financing for development co-operation. She publishes academically in her field and presents at a number of international conferences. She is Adjunct Faculty at the Universities of South Africa where she supervises and/or supports postgraduate throughput initiatives. Additionally, in the College of Accounting Sciences, she has been appointed as a Research Fellow at the University of South Africa.

Charmaine also specialises in international funding and project co-operation for research and knowledge outcomes, with a particular focus on European Union (EU) and Members States of Europe partnerships with Southern African.  She has a-360 degree knowledge of funding and grants.  Charmaine has worked for a selection of Delegations of the EU, including to other SADC countries, in preparing their applicants or grant beneficiaries to run EU-funded projects successfully. She has also trained and presented in Brussels on EU programmes dealing with globally-based research and innovation fund offered by the EU. She has completed a programme on USA-based funding, working at building the commonalities between diverse international research-based funding.

From 2015-2016, Charmaine was the Research Management Portfolio Project Manager for SARIMA. From 2008-2014, Charmaine was the part-time Academic Project Manager for Africa & International Programmes with SANTRUST and SANPAD, two development programmes that funded research and doctoral education in countries of SADC as well as Ethiopia.  She headed up the Ethiopian programme, working with 300 Doctoral Candidates on Doctoral Proposal and Thesis writing. She was also the Director of the Conflict and Governance Facility, a granting project of South Africa and the European Union that specialised in policy-related conflict and governance research within the spheres of National, Provincial and Local Government in South Africa, and also within SADC and the continent.  She also was the Head of International Relations at a provincial legislature and facilitated international partnerships thereto. She has worked as a Project Technical Advisor on various funded projects at the Pan African Parliament (AWEPA, GIZ, AfDB), the National Treasury (CIDA and Presidency of South Africa (EU) (specifically on grant making); as well as regional civil society organisations and South African universities, particularly in the fields of strategy, resource mobilisation, research conceptualisation and research management.


Professor Chris Landsberg

Chris Landsberg is professor and SARChI Chair of African Diplomacy and Foreign Policy at the University of Johannesburg (UJ), and Senior Associate at the UJ School of Leadership. He is the former Head of politics and International Relations at UJ. Landsberg was educated at Rand Afrikaans University (now University of Johannesburg); Rhodes; and Oxford, and holds MPhil and DPhil international relations degrees (Oxon). He studied as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford, and is a former Hamburg Fellow at Stanford University in the United States (US). Previously he was director of the Centre for Policy Studies (CPS) in Johannesburg, and co-founder and former co-director of the Centre for Africa’s International Relations at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. He is a co-editor of seven books, including From Cape to Congo: Southern Africa’s Emerging Security Challenges, South Africa in Africa: The Post-Apartheid Era. Landsberg’s single-authored titles include The Diplomacy of Transformation: South African Foreign Policy and Statecraft; and The Quiet Diplomacy of Transition: International Politics and South Africa’s Transition.


Joan Brickhill

Joan Brickhill is the co-founder and executive director of SALO. Previously she was a journalist, broadcaster and political activist in Southern Africa over three decades.  Among others she worked for various African publications, Radio Freedom and the ANC Information Department in Lusaka, the BBC World Service/African Service, and the Zimbabwe and SA Broadcasting Corporations. In 1987 she and her Zimbabwean husband were injured a car bomb attack on them by agents of SA Military Intelligence. In 2002 she returned to South Africa after 28 years in exile, including 15 years in Zimbabwe.


Professor Brian Raftopoulos

Professor Brian Raftopoulos is a Zimbabwean scholar and activist. Formally Professor of Development Studies at the University of Zimbabwe, he moved to Cape Town at the end of March 2006 and is currently the Director of Research and Advocacy in the Solidarity Peace Trust/Ukuthula Trust, an NGO dealing with human rights issues in Zimbabwe. Currently he is also a Research Associate at the International Studies Group, University of the Free State. He has published widely on Zimbabwean history, labour history, historiography, politics, and economic issues. Prof. Raftopoulos was also a Mellon Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Humanities Research at the University of the Western Cape from 2009-2016. He serves on the Advisory Board of the Journal of Southern African Studies and on the Advisory Board of Kronos, Southern African Histories. In addition, he has been a civic activist in Zimbabwe since the 1990’s. He was a member of the founding Task Force of the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) 1998-2000, the editor of the NCA journal Agenda from 1999-2001, as well as the first Chair of the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition from 2001-2003.


Joyce Sikhakhane-Rankin

Joyce Sikhakhane-Rankin holds a BsC Honours degree from the Open University in the U.K. and has over 40 years of experience as a journalist/ playwright and author. She had started her career at The World Newspaper, Drum Magazine, The Sunday Post, and the Rand Daily Mail, covering the political realities of the country. After being in solitary confinement as a political detainee in Pretoria Central and Nylstroom prisons, she was forced to flee her motherland and spent nearly 20 years in exile, working for the ANC. She spent her time in exile writing various plays and books. Sikhakhane-Rankin was able to return to South Africa in 1995. She is currently working on her family biography.


Judith Todd

Judith Todd is a Zimbabwean author and activist. Briefly jailed and detained by Rhodesia’s Ian Smith regime in 1972, she was then exiled for nearly eight years.  She returned to Zimbabwe in 1980 and became director of the Zimbabwe Project, a non-governmental organisation dedicated to the welfare of war veterans.  In 2003 she was disenfranchised and stripped of her Zimbabwe citizenship. She is the author of Rhodesia: An Act of Treason, the story of white Rhodesia’s unilateral declaration of independence from Britain in 1965, and The Right To Say No, about black Rhodesia’s rejection of an attempted settlement between the Rhodesian and British governments.  Both books were banned in Rhodesia, and republished in Zimbabwe. Her Through the darkness.  A Life in Zimbabwe received special commendation on 31 October 2008 from the Noma Award for Publishing in Africa.


Lucian Segami

Lucian Segami is the International Secretary for the National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union (NEHAWU).A former student activist at UCT and in the Western Cape active in ANC alliance structures,  he worked towards the launch of several solidarity movements in South Africa including Western Sahara and Zimbabwe promoting popular South African support of struggles for democracy. His focus includes promoting internationalism and popular participatory democracy at grassroots level. He is a founder member of SALO and is based in Johannesburg.


Prince Mbekwa

Prince Mbekwa is one of the co-founders of SALO. He received his education at Border Technikon, Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University and at Scrum Sense. Prince is a skilled systems analyst who specializes in system architecture, Services Oriented Architecture and is a certified Scrum Master. He has been a team lead and manager both at Knowledge Tree Inc. and at the Free Software Innovation Unit ( University of the Western Cape). Prince has worked at UNESCO as an Assistant Program Specialist


Reynaud Daniels

Reynaud Daniels is an attorney of the High Court in South Africa and a member of the Legal Sub-committee of SALO’s board.. He obtained his BA degree from UCT, his LLB degree from UWC and his LLM degree in International Human Rights Law from Northwestern University (Chicago, IL) with honors. He has for several years been a director of Cheadle Thompson & Haysom Inc, a leading labour law firm.


Richard Melville Smith

Richard Melville Smith is a peace and human security strategist from South Africa. He has direct experience of post-conflict reconstruction in multiple countries including South Africa, Mozambique, Burundi, Somalia and Sierra Leone, and has worked on the design and implementation of practical peacebuilding processes aimed at establishing community policing forums, encouraging truth and reconciliation, building local peace committees and strengthening peace infrastructures. With over twenty-five years of experience his approach to process design and facilitation, mediation, dialogue and transformative peace leadership is informed by a background in activism, in support of African peace processes, working with student, youth, women and workers organisations. His involvement in political and electoral affairs began as an anti-apartheid activist and through his involvement with the Independent Electoral Commission in South Africa during the first democratic election in 1994, and later with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

He is currently a Senior Mediation Adviser on process design and facilitation, for the UN DPPA Mediation Support Unit Standby Team. This position builds on work with the international diplomatic community, senior government officials, policy makers and civil society leaders in his efforts to build consensus and find systemic solutions to peace and security challenges. He spent over two years living in Sri Lanka supporting the peace process from 1999 to 2001, and in Ethiopia from 1997 to 2000. Richard has been working in Myanmar since 2010 focused on dialogue and transformative peace leadership, and has been an associate of the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies since its inception. He is a rostered member of the Southern African regional peacekeeping force and has worked in more than 35 countries across Africa, South East Asia and the Middle East. Richard is non-executive director of the Southern African Liaison Office (SALO), a Trustee of the Zimbabwe Institute and a Board member of the conflict transformation outfit the ACTION Support Centre (ASC). SALO has a strong focus on combatting hate speech, human security and on policy dialogue, while the ASC focuses on building social cohesion, supporting mediation efforts and international solidarity.

He is co-author of the Working with Conflict book, Skills and Strategies for Change, translated into 7 languages, and has published multiple articles and strategy documents focused on conflict sensitivity, cooperative partnerships, peace and development and gender, peace and security. He has a B.Soc.Sc in Economics and Psychology from the University of Cape Town, a diploma in Adult Education from UNISA and an M.Phil in Conflict Management and Transformation from the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. 


Professor Rob Moore

Prof Rob Moore was appointed as Executive Director of the GCRO in 2016. Previously he was a Deputy Vice Chancellor at Wits University, a post he held for seven years. His work included responsibility for the advancement of the University’s strategic purposes in partnership with other institutions in society. Among other things, he assisted in developing the relationships between Wits and partners in government, industry, civil society and other universities. He was project director for South Africa’s Ministerial Review Committee on the National System of Innovation, a study conducted in 2010 and 2011 and published in 2012.

Prior to joining Wits, he spent twelve years (1992 – 2004) at the University of Cape Town researching and teaching in higher education studies. His research interests there focused on issues of higher education policy and institutional adaptation. In particular, he has published on issues of institutional responsiveness to policy, on curriculum reform, and (more recently) on the governance of knowledge partnerships.

He sits on the Boards of the Southern African Liaison Office (SALO), The Conversation Africa (TCA), the Centre for Sustainability in Mining and Industry (CSMI), and the Cradle of Humankind Trust (CoHT).


Sha’ista Kazee

Sha’ista Kazee is a practicing advocate specialising in regulatory, administrative and constitutional law in South Africa.

Prior to being called to the Bar, she worked as an attorney at the Legal Resources Centre, an NGO specialising in human rights law and strategic impact litigation, Webber Wentzel and Bowmans. Sha’ista clerked at the Constitutional Court for Justice Nkabinde and read toward her LLM at SOAS, University of London in transitional justice, human rights, and comparative international commercial arbitration. She is CiArb accredited.

She is a founding and national executive member of the Pan African Bar Association of South Africa (PABASA), a national voluntary association of advocates in South Africa


Molly Dhlamini

Molly Dhlamini is a member of the African Union FemWise- Africa (Network of African Women Mediators in Conflict) since 2018. She is the former Projects and Stakeholder Relations Manager for the Southern African Liaison Office (SALO). Before SALO, she had a brief stint working as the Stakeholder Engagement Coordinator in the Department of Mineral Resources Ministry (DMR). For almost a decade, she worked for the National Union Of Mineworkers Union both as the International Relations Coordinator and later as the adviser to Presidency of the Union. Ms Dhlamini has a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Durban Westville (now UKZN ) and an Honours degrees in Industrial Sociology from both the Rand Afrikaans University (now University of Johannesburg) and the University of the Witwatersrand. She also holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Sociology from WITS University. She is currently finalising an Executive Masters in Managing Peace and Security in Africa with the Institute for Peace and Security Studies – University of Addis Ababa. During her student years, she served as a member and leader of the Student Union for Christian Action (SUCA) and the South Africa Student Congress (SASCO) in different capacities. She also served in the WITS University Council in 2000 representing Post Graduate Students. Molly Dhlamini has also been serving in the African National Conngress (ANC) NEC Subcommittee on International Relations from 1999 to date.


Dr Tara Polzer Ngwato

Dr Tara Polzer Ngwato is a Director of Social Surveys Africa, a social research organisation based in Johannesburg, South Africa. She has seventeen years of experience conducting and managing research on a wide range of social justice and social development themes. Her prior experience includes being Head of Research for the Royal Bafokeng Administration (RBA) of the Royal Bafokeng Nation, a traditionally governed near-mining community in South Africa. There she was responsible for providing empirical evidence for policy-making and impact assessment on a wide range of social development interventions. She also spent ten years as Senior Researcher at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg with the African Centre for Migration & Society. Prior to Wits, Polzer Ngwato worked with Transparency International and the GTZ. She has also consulted widely for South African, African and global organisations including UNHCR, UN OCHA and the IFRC. Polzer Ngwato is widely published and holds a PhD and an MSc in Development Studies from the London School of Economics and Political Science and a BA in Social and Political Sciences from Cambridge University.