Our team comes from around the world is always growing. Here are the current goat enthusiasts helping to make The Gambia Goat Dairy's dreams a reality!
GGD Co-Founder and Director
Dr. Brianna Parsons is a Lecturer in Sustainable Agriculture with the Center for Animal Health and Productivity at The University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, New Bolton Center. She received her undergraduate degree in biology and neuroscience & behavior at Wesleyan University in 2014, her veterinary degree from Penn Vet in 2018, and her MSEd in Education Entrepreneurship from Penn’s Graduate School of Education in 2020.
In 2016, Brianna co-founded Gambia Goat Dairy, a social-entrepreneurial pilot-project that researches and employs sustainable agricultural practices to improve community health and wellbeing and support inclusive economic development. Brianna is interested in impact-driven research examining the effect of productive livestock systems on livelihoods, food sovereignty and the environment, and sees sustainable livestock agriculture as a solution for economic, environmental, and social sustainability across the globe. She is also strongly interested in education – both formal programs and research-based educational outreach in informal settings.
Brianna grew up in the woods in Quakertown, PA. Her family had many different animals (dogs, cows, donkeys, rabbits, and turtles) and she always felt connected to animals and nature. In her off-time, Brianna enjoys hiking and camping, yoga, discovering new music, cooking, and sharing meals and quality time with friends. Her unofficial motto is good food is better with good friends. She also has a chubby orange cat named Ginkgo.
Wharton MBA Candidate 2022
University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine 2019
McGill University BS in Biology 2015
Corey grew up in northern New Jersey and studied conservation and developmental biology at McGill University in Montréal. At The University of Pennsylvania, he studied veterinary medicine and focused on dairy production and animal health economics. While in veterinary school, Corey cofounded GGD with Brianna and spent most of his time outside of the classroom working through early phases of the venture. After veterinary school, he practiced small animal medicine in Philadelphia before starting his MBA at the Wharton School. At Wharton, Corey majoring in strategic management and operations and interning with Amazon. After my MBA, he hopes to further develop his operations and strategy skillset with the goal of achieving impact in global food security.
Outside of school and work Corey enjoys surfing, sailing, skiing, hiking, and playing trumpet and piano.
Sulay (Sol) Camara
GGD's Farm Manager
Sulay was born in a village called Sukuta in The Gambia and was raised by his grandparents in Siffoe. His family taught him to farm, as they relied on agriculture to provide for the family. During childhood, Sulay helped raise his family’s herd of sheep – taking them into the bush to graze before and after school and caring for them at home. He was living with his family through young adulthood, then moved to Brusibi in the city to find more reliable work and income. While managing apartment rentals with Jamorai Apartments, Sulay met GGD co-founders Corey and Brianna. Over time, Sulay visited the farm and helped with projects, learning more about veterinary medicine and providing valuable input into the farm’s vision. Sulay is now the farm manager for GGD. Farming throughout his childhood, Sulay believes in the power of agriculture and loves animals as living creatures with a right to be cared for.
Sulay wants success from whatever he pursues in life and aspires to continue moving forward and upward with his life. In his free time, Sulay browses YouTube videos on agriculture across the globe, and keeps up with football – especially the Premier league. Sulay is extremely handy and can fix just about any problem he comes across.
GGD's Goat Watchman and Caretaker
Sainey Badjie was GGD’s first employee, starting work on the farm in early 2018. Sainey has worked many jobs in Sanyang Village, most recently working as a watchman in the GambiaPartner Skills Center. Sainey is a father of four children, two boys and two girls. He is very hard worker and does all kinds of jobs for GGD, like feeding the goats, cleaning the barn, irrigating the grasses, and watching the compound. Sainey loves the goats, and they love him back – he can shout out to call them and they will always come running back. Sainey makes any visitor to the farm feel welcome and is sure to make them laugh. GGD would not be what it is without Sainey by our side.
University of Pennsylvania Veterinary Student, Class of 2023
2021 Foundation for Food and Agricultural Research Veterinary Fellow
Bailey Carpenter is from Marine, Illinois, which is a small town of 900 people. For her undergraduate degree she attended University of Arkansas, where she received her B.S. in animal science with a minor in agricultural business. Though her original plan for becoming a vet was to be an equine practitioner, her undergraduate experience challenged her once narrow understanding of veterinarian’s role in society. Two research programs in Mozambique and Belize helped her cultivate a passion for merging food animal medicine with public health initiatives and sustainable agriculture. However, these two experiences left her dissatisfied due to their short duration, dearth of cultural training, and ultimately lack of perceptible impact. It made her recognize the limitations of international business enterprises commonly generated with good intentions, but ultimately poor planning and lack of scalability.
This realization motivated her to pursue a social-impact oriented career with end goals of directly supporting the needs of marginalized farming communities. The ability to advance regenerative farming initiatives, designed with the explicit goal to support local communities, provides her with the opportunity to bridge her passion for veterinary medicine with social entrepreneurship. She is currently functioning as a student researcher with Gambia Goat Dairy. Her objective is to create a model of poultry production that captures poultry health, nutrition, biosecurity, and commercial sales as well as related financial projections for testing at our teaching and research farm. When she's not doing research or studying for exams, she is either running, snuggling with her cat Katie, or practicing new makeup looks!
University of Pennsylvania Veterinary Student, Class of 2024
Justin Kozma is from Randolph, New Jersey in the United States of America. He studied Animal Science at Cornell University for his undergraduate degree, with minors in Entomology and Business for the Life Sciences. During the summer going into his senior year, he spent a month in northern Tanzania through the School for Field Studies. This month changed his life and inspired him to pursue a career involving international agriculture and conservation medicine.
As a rising second year at PennVet, he is analyzing milk lactation data and the effects that different diets and other factors have on the milk yield. The results will help guide management decisions to help the dairy operate optimally both economically and health-wise. He hopes to gain more experience with GGD and other international projects as he continues into his veterinary career as an all-species veterinarian, in places like Cuba, where many of his family is from. At PennVet, he is the vice president of the Latinx Veterinary Medicine Association (LVMA). When he's not working with animals, he loves hiking, photographing wildlife, taking his yorkie Belle on walks, gardening, and playing/watching sports like basketball, football, and rugby!
University of Pennsylvania Veterinary Student, Class of 2024
Dr. Chieffo chairs the advisory board for the Gambia Goat Dairy. She holds a veterinary degree (VMD) and PhD from the University of Pennsylvania. After several years in clinical practice, she completed a residency in medical genetics, pediatrics and reproduction at Penn Vet. She was president of the University of Pennsylvania Veterinary Alumni Medical Society, member of the Dean’s Alumni Council, and is a member of the Student Inspiration Awards committee at Penn Vet.
She participated in the Wharton Penn Executive Veterinary Leadership Program – Making an impact as a Global Health Leader. Dr. Chieffo is the author of several published scientific articles and has presented at numerous scientific meetings throughout her career. Dr. Chieffo is also president of the Paoli-Malvern-Berwyn Rotary club and is the chair of grants. She is also chair of the Christian Adult Education committee at her church. Dr. Chieffo worked in the Pharmaceutical Industry for over 20 years and has recently “semi” retired.
Dr. Márquez is the Vice Provost for Global Health & International Development at Drexel University. She serves as the Director (and Founder) of the Dornslife Global Development Scholars Program which leverages an innovative capacity-building partnership between Drexel and World Vision International to provide global health training, experiential learning and funding for faculty/student research and student field experiences in 36 countries across Sub-Saharan Africa. Dr. Márquez has garnered international recognition for her work in water, sanitation and hygiene promotion (WASH); health systems strengthening and capacity building; and the environmental burden of disease in developing countries. She holds a BS in mechanical engineering from Prairie View A&M University; a master’s in civil engineering from Texas A&M University; and a PhD in environmental sciences and engineering from the UNC-Chapel Hill Gillings School of Global Public Health. She is a Professor in the Dornsife School of Public Health, as well as the Department of Civil, Architectural & Environmental Engineering (College of Engineering), and the Department of Biodiversity, Earth & Environmental Science (College of Arts & Sciences) at Drexel.
She teaches graduate courses in WASH, global health ethics, public health in developing countries and maternal and child health—including graduate public health field courses in The Gambia and Cuba--and also helps support a number of interdisciplinary global health research, academic and training activities in Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Africa on behalf of Drexel. In addition, she has held distinguished faculty/research appointments at The University of The Gambia and Gambia College School of Public Health; the Université Gaston-Berger de Saint-Louis in Senegal; as an Erasmus Mundus Scholar at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Santé Publique (or EHESP, The French School of Public Health), and the University of Sheffield (UK) School of Health and Health Related Research (ScHARR); and as an Associate Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine-Center for Global Health. Dr. Márquez also serves on numerous boards and committees including, Power Up Gambia, the African Family Health Organization (AFAHO), and the Board of Directors of the Consortium of Universities in Global Health (CUGH).
Dr. Galligan holds a veterinary degree (VMD) from University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from Wharton. He is currently Marilyn M. Simpson Endowed Chair Professor Animal Health Economics and is Director of the Center for Animal Health and Productivity at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine. He is also Director of the Wharton VMD/MBA program. His area of research is in understanding the economic value of veterinary and associated technologies applied to food animal production systems. During his academic career he has written many computer programs that have been used by the dairy industry to promote production efficiency. His group at Penn Vet is globally recognized for their work in dairy nutrition and economic modeling of managerial decision making. He is keenly interested in issues regarding global food production. He has been to China several times where he is working on adapting US food animal (dairy cattle) nutrition models to conditions in China. He was an invited speaker at the First Large Herd Conference in China (last year) as well the Second Large Herd Conference (this year). He has published over 70 manuscripts on economic concepts and methodologies in food animal production. Dr. Galligan is also a founder and former board member of the Avon Grove Charter School, in West Grove PA, a K-12 school with over 1,300 students.
Ms. McConville is the Executive Director of Power Up Gambia, and non-profit organization that provides solar power to hospitals in Gambia Africa. Her previous work included non-profit project manager in watersheds and water quality education, and project management and administrative oversight on federal Transportation Enhancement grants awarded to Pennsylvania Resources Council from 2007 to 2009. She has served as a wetlands biologist with various private engineering firms and with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; as a research associate at the University of Pennsylvania and Oregon State University in acid rain and old growth forest ecology studies’ and worked in West Africa in the 1980’s as a Peace Corps volunteer managing reforestation projects as part of a USAID Reforestation Project in Senegal.
As Executive Director of Power Up Gambia, Ms. McConville provides project management for Power Up Gambia projects in the field; provides administrative support for the organization; coordinates work of all volunteers and interns; assists in fundraising; and works with the board of Power Up Gambia on organizational strategy and project implementation.