Airlift to America

This website was established as a joint effort of several individuals to provide materials to the public relating to the airlifts that are the subject of the book “Airlift to America”. Members of the team behind the website are listed below in alphabetical order, together with information on who we are.


Valerie Stephanie Anderson worked for over twenty five years as Executive Assistant to Theodore W. Kheel, a renowned lawyer, arbitrator and mediator who served in the late fifties as President of the National Urban League and played an important role in the airlifts and other civil rights causes.

Vickie Ndibo is the daughter of Airlift alumni, Regina Katungulu Ndibo and Philip Ndibo. She received her doctorate at Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, and serves as Managing Trustee for The Mbegu Trust, a Nairobi-based charitable organization established to help develop education and opportunity in Kenya and East Africa.

Diana Ofwona, of Kenya, is daughter of Mark Ofwona, one of the Airlift students. She is Deputy Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme for Niger and was formerly Special Advisor to the Director, Regional Bureau for Africa, based in New York City. She has worked for the United Nations for a decade in various capacities in different regions including Africa, the Caribbean, and America.

Tom Shachtman has written more than thirty books about history, economics, and sociology, including a children's book, GROWING UP MASAI. A former executive with the National Geographic Society, he has also written, and occasionally produced and directed, documentaries for ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, and other broadcast outlets, some of which took him to Africa. He has taught writing at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts and at Harvard's Extension School. For more information, visit the author's website.

Jane K. Stanley is a lawyer who worked in the employee benefits field for nearly thirty years and has since devoted herself to nonprofit work. She is a director of the TASK Foundation, which was founded in the 1960s by her parents Theodore and Ann S. Kheel, who were active in civil rights throughout their lives.

Cora Weiss is the former Executive Director of the African American Students Foundation and member of its Board of Directors. She was an officer of Dr. Martin Luther King's Gandhi Society for Human Rights and the past president of the International Peace Bureau (Nobel Peace laureate 1910). In January 2007 she and the late Pamela Mboya organized the first ever reunion of Airlift students in Nairobi which was the genesis of the Airlift to America book.

Support for this website was provided by the TASK Foundation, named for its founders, Ted and Ann S. Kheel, who helped organize the airlift and hosted airlift students at their house.