In an attempt to provide weekly profiling of patriotic Bronxites on out media outlet, this week our media crew at Parkchester Times have caught a fresh big fish at the Bronx Borough President Office who is doing a great job to ensure that BP Vanessa Gibson deliver her campaign promises to residents of The Bronx County. He is Mr. David Ahmed Coulibaly.
In his interview with our team, he described himself as a responsible and proud African immigrant who has tirelessly and extensively contributed to the progress and development of not only The Bronx, but also the entire New York.
In short, to comprehensively understand who the new Director of Community Services at the Bronx Borough President Office is, please read the interview below.
PT: Tell us about you, your family and educational background.
D. A. Coulibaly: I was born and raised in Ivory Coast. First of my family to arrive in the USA. My Father passed away in 2013 and my mother is still alive at 80. I have two brothers and one sister. I am married and I have 5 kids ( 2 girls and one boy and twins, one girl and boy) and their age varies between 14, 5, 4, and 20 months. Wifey calls herself a fundamental black American, her way to say that her ancestry predates slavery.
PT: What about your career experiences? Please take us through your academic and career journeys so far.
D. A. Coulibaly: I’m a graduate of the University of Notre Dame’s selective and prestigious Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies on a two-year full-ride scholarship. I was born and raised in Ivory Coast and arrived in the United States of America in 2012; I am very passionate about empowering and engaging the broader African communities civically, politically, and economically here in the United States and abroad.
My work experience has spanned several continents, but the urgency that has always driven me is the need for positive social change and justice. I worked for the Global non-profit World Vision in the Philippines. In this role, my work focused on understanding the impacts of peacebuilding strategies used by the children and community members to de-escalate conflict, build peace, and become more civically engaged citizens. I assessed peacebuilding strategies and made recommendations for best practices to enhance children’s leadership and religious leaders for better participation in conflict resolution initiatives and democracy.
The experience gained in that position helped me to effectively carry out training at both grassroots and policy levels to prevent post-election conflict and prepare citizens to adhere to democratic norms. I also have significant experience in my home region of West Africa. In Mali, I worked for a year in a social marketing company where I supported the development of proposals and projects to foster social cohesion, peacebuilding, and development in northern Mali where the minority Tuaregs and Arabs feel marginalized. I also worked for the British Branch of the global non-profit Save the Children. While there, I conducted research on child trafficking in the soccer industry, which fed into global advocacy and fundraising for the organization. I embarked on a journey to detect high-impact teachers for Teach for America and worked on the decennial 2020 census to reach hard-to-count New Yorkers on behalf of African Communities Together as a program manager.
At the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, I joined NYC Health and Hospital as the Test and Trace Corps Bronx Borough Outreach Campaign Director- A public initiative to combat and reverse the threat of Covid-19 in NYC. I also taught a couple of semesters as an adjunct professor at Pace University in the department of Women’s and Gender Studies covering civic engagement, peace, and justice studies. I am humbly honored to be celebrated and honored as one of the most influential and impactful change-makers in the Bronx by Schneps Media.
PT : Since you assumed the position of Director of Community Services at the Bronx Borough President’s Office, how much free time do you have and what do you usually do in your free time?
D. A. Coulibaly: There’s no such as the free time when you put yourself out there as a resource. My phone never stops ringing and I am always pleased to help and connect folks to resources.
PT : What have been your civic, economic and socio-political involvements, especially, in the last decade?
D. A. Coulibaly: Actually, in the last ten years of my career, I have been involved with numerous civics, economic, educational, social and political activities. For instance, apart from the ones I stated earlier, I have also worked for Riders Alliance to ensure that our subways are safe, reliable, and affordable among other things. And I am very proud of this.
What do you hope to accomplish within the next decade?
D. A. Coulibaly: In the next decade, I want to buy a house for my family, and be able to influence policies for not only the greater good of African immigrants but also for New Yorkers as a whole.
PT: What message do you have for fellow New Yorkers, especially your county and community members?
D. A. Coulibaly: For fellow New Yorkers, I would say let’s continue to learn to be impactful, let’s get trained, and join community boards, and civic engagement initiatives. Simply put, let’s get involved in the life of our city.