Our Team

YEP members are diverse professionals from all walks of life and experiences who are striving for growth, excellence, and success in their professional and social lives.  Our members are committed to implement the four goals of YEP.  Read more about YEP's four goals on our What We Do page.








Mesfin Getaneh
Co-founder and President

Recognizing the lack of effective networking platforms for young diverse Ethiopian professionals in the DMV area, Mesfin Getaneh founded YEP in Nov, 2010. As the President of YEP, Mesfin is responsible for directing its vision and management, overseeing the organization’s overall operations and expansion, and representing the organization with key stakeholders. Mesfin is currently a Patent Examiner in the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Additionally, Mesfin has served on the board of directors of Ethiopian-American Engineers and Scientists (SEAES) at the US Patent and Trademark office, an organization dedicated to promoting the interests, aspirations, and professional excellence of Ethiopian-American Engineers and Scientists. Mesfin has also served as a mentor and tutor to high school and college students in Louisiana and Virginia. Moreover, in response to the most recent Horn of Africa famine, Mesfin was part of the founding team of HornLight, a website platform to share diverse, complex and nuanced narratives on the Horn of Africa, serving as head of Messaging. Mesfin holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering at the University of New Orleans (UNO). In college, Mesfin participated in multiple fellowships and published research papers in collaboration with his mentoring professors at Stanford, Purdue, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), and Northwestern universities.

Shimelse Mekonnen
Co-founder and Executive Vice President 

Shimelse Mekonnen is co-founder and Executive Vice President of Young Ethiopian Professionals (YEP). As an Executive Vice-President, Shimelse oversees and manages YEP's Tutoring and Mentoring and Outreach teams. Shimelse strongly believes in community organizing and has dedicated himself to making a difference in the lives of Ethiopian professionals in the Diaspora. For the past four years, Shimelse has been working at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, a Washington DC based think-tank. He is currently an analyst at MSRB. Shimelse holds an M.SC. and a B.A. in Economics. During his college time, he was actively involved in co-curriculum activities; Shimelse was the vice president of the International Students Union while he pursued his Masters in Norway. 

Lulit Tesfaye
Co-founder and Vice President

Lulit Tesfaye, is the Co-founder & Vice President of Young Ethiopian Professionals (YEP). Having been actively engaged in leading community development programs, outreach and project management both in the US and Ethiopia, Lulit has developed experience in outreach and grassroots development. Lulit has an MBA with a concentration in Project Management. Prior to moving to the United States, Lulit earned a Bachelor Degree in Law from Jimma University in Ethiopia. She has also served as Monitoring and Evaluation Officer and Assistant to the director for the Ethiopian Women Lawyers Association (EWLA), assisting women and children in securing their economic, social and political rights, promoting gender development initiatives and Human rights advocacy. Lulit currently works full-time for a Regulatory Authority as aproduct owner of regulatory products and loves spending her volunteer time with Young Ethiopian Professionals (YEP) striving to foster a community of diverse professionals in the Ethiopian Diaspora.

Team Members

Henok Tedla

Tigest Alemu

Sabel G. Kassa 

Anna Jemaneh

Elbethel Gebrehiwot

Deresse (Dee) Harris

Tigest Ruga

Zewdu Beyen

Birhanu Abate

Yanit Belachew

Solomon Garedew


Who We Are                             << What We Do                                   <<< History