Katie Safford


Contact Katie: ksafford(at)gkinitiative(dot)org

Katie is a systems sensing, systems evaluation, and participatory systems mapping specialist.  She supports a diverse portfolio of work at GKI by employing systems approaches to better analyze the challenges of our partners and clients and to envision innovative solutions and strategies. Her core expertise is coaching multi-stakeholder groups to use systems sensing approaches to better understand each other’s perspectives, challenges, and goals to drive co-created strategies. She also has experience designing facilitated experiences, workshops, and trainings that fuel conversation and turns insights into practical strategy, for USAID, DFAT, Polaris, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Additionally, she has extensive experience in designing and conducting data collection approaches such as surveys, key-informant interviews, and focus group discussions. Before joining the GKI team, she served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uganda.  While in Uganda, she developed a comprehensive training on manufacturing biomass charcoal briquettes made from food and agricultural waste to combat deforestation. Katie earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in environmental engineering from Mercer University. Her undergraduate and graduate research focused on the development and analysis of water filters capable of removing biological and chemical (e.g., pesticides) contaminants from source water. In her free time, Katie enjoys spending time on the beach in her hometown of Charleston, S.C.