Crystal Simeoni

Head of Advocacy and Economic Justice lead, African Women’s Development and Communication Network (FEMNET)
Nationality: Kenyan/Italian
Living in: Nairobi, Kenya
Fields of work: gender, public policy, governance, macroeconomics

“Courage. It takes courage to question and challenge current macroeconomic models, especially from a Pan-African feminist analysis. Getting into spaces takes courage. Speaking truth to power takes courage. But for change to happen, we need to be audaciously courageous.”
— Crystal Simeoni

“In my current role, I serve as Head of Advocacy and lead on Economic Justice at FEMNET, one of Africa’s largest women’s rights networks, with over 600 members in more than 45 African countries. I lead our work to ensure that women from Africa have the capacity to articulate their issues through a Pan-African feminist macroeconomic lens and are meaningfully present in policy spaces. 

“My last role before FEMNET was as Policy Lead for the thematic area on international financial architecture at the Tax Justice Network Africa. My duties included policy and advocacy work at a Pan-African level with governments, donors and organisational members and partners on tax justice issues on the continent.

“I previously worked for Hivos - East Africa where I served as both Programme Officer and Programme Development Manager. While at Hivos, I worked in sub-national, national and regional policy and partner management across both my roles. This meant that I worked with private sector, government at all levels, journalists and researchers, as well as having a fundraising role. 

“My career has revolved around themes of inequalities, including economic inequality and gender inequality, and has also involved work around data.

“I have an MA in African studies with a focus on rural economic development from Dalarna University in Sweden, and a BBA in Business Management from Centria University of Applied Sciences in Finland. I currently sit on the board of the Institute of Public Finance (IPF Kenya) and I am a member of a number of reference groups related to gender and macroeconomic policy.”
Crystal Simeoni

Twitter: @crystalsimeoni

“Fighting for Africa at a global level is hard. Fighting for women’s rights in a patriarchal world is hard. Fighting for both of them together sometimes feels impossible. Despite this, the African women’s movement is never relenting and continuously fighting — clamouring through windows when doors are closed to them, and then opening the same doors for those who come after them. So many of these brave unrelenting women have gone before me; so many I see coming after me. I am in good company — and this gives me hope.”
— Crystal Simeoni