Our Team


David Jacobs – Head of Operations 

David helps build the Global Teachers Institute into an independent social enterprise that involves fundraising, financial planning and the establishment of GTI into a social franchise. David comes to LEAP with 15 years of business experience in product management, software development and technical sales with multi-national clients such as Safeway, Kroger Foods and British Petroleum. The sale of a business in 2009 he had a stake in has allowed him to pursue work within the non-profit sector for the past six years at the South Africa Education Project (SAEP), FoodBank South Africa and Stop Hunger Now Southern Africa.


Hassiena Marriott – Head Of EducationHM7

Hassiena Marriott has taught for 20 years in primary and high schools, in both public and private schools, specializing in Mathematics, Physical Sciences and Life Sciences. She is one of the authors of the Siyavula Life Sciences textbooks. She holds a BPaed Science degree and a Master’s in Education degree from UKZN. She has been the senior project manager for teacher development at BRIDGE Innovation in Learning Organization for the last three years.

Tatenda Zimano – Operations TZ7

Tatenda manages the operations within GTI and is responsible for engaging with the organization’s vision and values to develop and maintain effective organizational processes. Born and bred with both parents in the education space, she has a particular passion for leadership empowerment across all ages. She believes in the potent value of every individual regardless of their level or title. With over 10 years of experience, she holds an Honours Degree in Marketing Management.


Khayakazi Mbunyuza – Fundraising & Communications

Khayakazi was born and raised in the rural Eastern Cape and has completed her studies and has completed her studies in the Public Relations and Communications discipline.  She joined GTI in 2016 as programmes administrator and is currently responsible for coordinating GTIs fundraising, communications and project managing our Internship and Fellowship Programme with Teach With Africa. She draws her inspiration from the many people who approach Education through cultivating curiosity as the path to deep learning.


Vuyelwa Poni – Regional Schools Coordinator, Cape Town

Vuyelwa’s journey with GTI started when I was appointed as the Site Manager for the Future Leaders Programme in 2017 at LEAP 2, Crossroads Campus. At that time, she was teaching Languages and Accounting to Grade 8 – 10 Learners. Since then, she worked with Aspiring teachers in Western Cape to positively impact their lives and want to empower her young teachers with skills that will enable them to be passionate and reflective, with a firm grasp of content and pedagogy.


Tania Ham – Regional Schools Coordinator, Bohlabela 

Tania is from Cape Town but moved to Limpopo to join the LEAP Science and Maths School, Jane Furse campus when it opened its doors to the Jane Furse community.  She has a degree in Human Ecology and is invested in supporting the development of both individuals and communities. She is passionate about motivating people and helping them to see that anything in life is possible. Tania believes for communities to develop, they need to be educated.


Mary-Jane Mkhatshwa – Regional Schools Coordinator, Ehlanzeni

Mary-Jane holds a Degree in Education and has over 33 years of teaching experience. She has travelled the world comparing education curriculums and improving teachers’ instructional practices in South Africa. Mary-Jane believes that one never stops learning, and your background is never the determining factor of your journey in life. In her free time, Mary-Jane lends her hand to her community giving back in many extraordinary ways.