JULIUS ACHON, FOUNDER
Julius Achon grew up in a small village, Awake, 40 miles northeast of Lira in northern Uganda. At age 12, he was kidnapped by the Lord’s Resistance Army, a militant coalition that rebelled against the Uganda government, and was forced to become a child soldier. Three months later, Julius escaped and returned to his village.
Soon thereafter, Julius returned to school and began running. His talents landed him a scholarship in 1990 to attend school at Makerere High School in the capital city of Kampala. At age 17, having attracted the attention of several Ugandan sports officials, he was entered in the 1994 World Junior Championships in Portugal, and ran the 1,500. He won the race, wearing shoes for the first time in competition and bringing Uganda its first World Junior gold medal. His performance caught the eye of John Cook, an American track coach who brought him to George Mason University in Virginia on a scholarship.
Julius went on to compete for Uganda in the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games, both times serving as captain of the Ugandan Olympic team. While training near his village in 2003, he encountered a group of orphans and couldn’t help but take them into his home. That was the beginning of the Achon Uganda Children’s Fund.
Today Julius lives in Uganda’s capital of Kampala and travels frequently to his home village of Awake, now the site of the Kristina Health Center, a rural clinic that serves hundreds of severely sick or injured patients every month. Julius was elected to Uganda’s parliament in 2017 and continues to serve today.
Julius’ story was detailed in John Brant’s book The Boy Who Runs.
Angela Fee, Executive Director
As Executive Director, Angela leads all of AUCF's US-based fundraising and operational oversight efforts. This includes managing board meetings and recruiting new board members; identifying and executing new funding opportunities; and leading trips to Uganda, where Angela conducts professional development with staff, provides direction into new projects, and serves as a mentor to our Uganda-based team.
Angela has held many roles throughout her life and career, including social worker, event planner, and college counselor. She spent much of her life supporting her husband Jim's career, including his final chapter as Co-Founder of AUCF. When Jim passed away in 2013, Angela unhesitatingly stepped into the Executive Director role.
CAITLIN BARRETT, DIRECTOR
Caitlin has a passion for the women of Uganda, and is most at home sitting under the mango tree in Northern Uganda, bringing about real change within communities in poverty. Caitlin holds a Bachelor of International Studies and a Masters of International Development Studies from UNSW in Sydney Australia. She is committed to helping others, and has a young family based in Sydney’s south. Caitlin serves as Executive Director of AUCF’s sister organization Love Mercy, and played a key role in its founding, alongside her friend Eloise Wellings.
MAUREEN BROTHERTON, SECRETARY
Maureen is past President of Seattle Rotary Service Foundation’s Board of Trustees (2013-14). She has served on multiple boards, including Children’s Hospital’s uncompensated care board and is current President of Seattle University’s Board of Regents. Maureen also co-founded, with her daughter Tia, Teens In Public Service (TIPS) in 1997. TIPS continues to develop future leaders committed to serving their communities. TIPS selects teenage leaders for paid community service. Maureen and her husband, Joe, are the proprietors of Doe Bay Resort & Retreat located on Orcas Island in the San Juan Islands.
JEFF CABA, DIRECTOR
Jeff Caba comes to AUCF through running, having spent years running and racing on the roads and trails around his home in Bend, OR. A physician assistant who earned a doctorate in Health Sciences and who has traveled extensively in Uganda and other developing countries, Jeff brings extensive expertise and experience to our organization. Jeff tells us that he is excited to be a member of the board, and hopes to assist in furthering the positive impact AUCF has made in Northern Uganda.
FRED CASON, DIRECTOR
Fred Cason (Bth, M.Divinity) is a successful pastor, mentor, church planter and motivator. He is Lead Pastor at True Life Fellowship Church in Beaverton, Oregon. Together with his wife, Betty, (married in 1969) and their whole family, he has provided the leadership and guidance that has transformed T.L.F. to what it is today: a vibrant, motivated, and family-oriented church. Fred is known for his relevant and transforming bible teaching. He has trained hundreds of ministry leaders overseas in a variety of conferences. He is faithfully committed to the strictest levels of personal and professional accountability.
CARRIE DIMOFF, DIRECTOR
Carrie is a 13 year Nike veteran who has spent the majority of her professional career in footwear development, focused on performance running, track & field, and Olympic product. She and her husband, John, have known Julius since his time living in Oregon, and have been avid supporters of his charity work since the early days collecting unneeded samples to send to his family back home. Carrie was educated at Princeton University (undergraduate degree in English Literature); since then she has maintained a “second career” as a competitive runner, competing in the 2008, 2012, & 2016 US Olympic Trials, and currently training for 2020. She is also a mom to two elementary school boys, Malcolm and Oliver.
MIKE FEE, BOARD CHAIR & STAFF MARKETING DIRECTOR
Michael Fee is a co-founder of education technology company Spotlight, focusing on marketing, business development and revenue generation. He has spent his entire career in education, including seven years as a teacher and staff member with Teach For America. He is a two-time graduate of Stanford University (B.A. ’91, M.B.A. ’99). Today he lives in Davis, CA, with his wife Karen and three children. He has traveled to Lira and Awake to understand better the impact that AUCF can have on the lives of Northern Ugandans, and is proud of his family’s efforts to establish and maintain the organization’s important work.
JIM FEE (1945-2013)
FORMER EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Jim Fee spent four years of his retirement serving as AUCF’s Founding Executive Director, assisting Julius with management of all organizational operations. He passed away suddenly and sadly in October 2013.
DAVID FEE, DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
David Fee is the Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Bowtech, a Eugene, Oregon, manufacturer of high-end hunting bows. Previously he served as Vice President at Benchmade, President of Garmont, North America, Sr. Director of North American Sales and Product Development at Yakima Products, Inc., and in various sales and marketing positions with Ford Motor Company. An avid cyclist, runner and triathlete, David holds a BA from Boston College and an MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. He lives with his wife Robin and children Elliott and Suzanna in Eugene, Oregon.
JIMMY OKULLO, DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS, UGANDA
Jimmy Okullo, 27, is one of Julius’ brothers, and the fifth of nine children born to Charles and Kristina Achon. Jimmy graduated from high school in 2003, and was enrolled in a Lira technical institution when Julius asked that he withdraw and instead use his tuition to pay the school fees of the 11 orphan children Julius was supporting. Jimmy generously agreed and further took on primary responsibility for the care of the children in Lira. Julius states, “I trust Jimmy to care for the kids and teach them good behavior”.
Since 2008, Jimmy has successfully overseen construction of a church in Awake, a home in Lira where 11 Achon orphans live and most recently the Kristina Health Center project. He has earned a solid reputation for managing projects. Jimmy’s goal is to complete his education as the children grow and funding permits, and AUCF has committed to assist him in this endeavor.
GRACE NAKISUYI, OPERATIONS MANAGER, UGANDA
Grace serves as Achon Uganda Children’s Fund’s Operations Manager in Kampala, Uganda’s capital. She supports AUCF’s work with the government and across a wide range of administrative responsibilities.
Grace has served in a variety of roles in business and government, having graduated from Makerere University in Kampala with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences. She also served as a Certified Nursing Assistant for three years while living in the United States. Grace is married to AUCF Founder and President Julius Achon.
Volunteers & Advisors
Kristen Hewitt graduated from Pacific University in 2010, with a BA in music education and an emphasis in vocal performance. She currently lives with her husband Tyler in Honolulu, Hawaii, where she is a musician and private music instructor. Through music, Kristin met Tim Schneider, who graciously connected her to Julius and the AUCF.
Kristin and Tim Schneider organized the Portland, OR AUCF Benefit Concert in 2012 and 2013. In 2012 she traveled to Uganda using her musical talent to entertain and teach the AUCF children.
Chris Cook has spent the past 17 years with Nike and is currently Senior Developer for Track and Field Footwear. He was born and raised in England and graduated from Oxford University with a BA (Hons) in Physics and Birmingham University with a PhD in Exercise Science. Chris has two sons, Rowan and Leo.
Chris serves as director of the annual Julius Achon Run in Awake, Uganda, as well as the Bowerman Run on the Nike Campus, which benefits AUCF.
Mr. Simpson has over 40 years of experience in medical sales and marketing. He retired from Physio-Control after 20 years of service including senior management positions as Vice President of World Wide Marketing, International, and North American Sales.
During his tenure at Physio-Control he was involved with the divestiture from Eli Lilly, sale to Bain Capital, IPO and acquisition by Medtronic. Mr. Simpson is also chairman of the R. Hunter Simpson Foundation. He is a Director on the University of Washington Foundation Board, in addition to external advisory board member for the UW Department of Global Health, Department of Bioengineering and co-chair of the School of Nursing. Other boards include the Physio Foundation, Resuscitation Academy and President of the Medic One Foundation.