Nagie Ndende

2022 Fellowship Alumna, Republic of the Congo

Nagie Ndende Paves the Way for Women and Youth in the Republic of Congo

A candid picture of a young woman speaking with others
Nagie attending a University of Virginia networking event during her Leadership in Civic Engagement Institute at the Presidential Precinct.

2022 Fellowship Alumna Nagie Ndende is a remarkable woman. At just 30 years old, she has earned her Master’s degree in comparative education and law and is one of only three women to earn a Ph.D. in Congo’s School of Law. Nagie is now a lecturer at Marien Ngouabi University and was just recently elected a Municipal Councilor of the La Cuvette Department. Departments in the Republic of Congo function somewhat like states in the U.S., and La Cuvette is roughly half the geographic size of Virginia.

This summer, Nagie was completing her Leadership in Civic Engagement Institute at the Presidential Precinct when she learned that she had won the election for Councilor! Out of 46 Councilors elected across Congo’s different departments, Nagie is the youngest and one of the few women among mainly established male politicians in their 60s.

Nagie believes that her participation as a Mandela Washington Fellow greatly increased support of her campaign. “My family, my brothers, my former students, JD [Orengo, 2022 Fellowship Alumnus from Kenya] even took pictures and videos from my Mandela Washington Fellowship and made compilations and campaign materials out of them. They went to different villages [in Congo], and showed the pictures and videos to people”!

Learn more about how the Honorable Nagie Ndende is inspiring countless others in her community in this article from the Presidential Precinct.