We’d like you to meet Dzenita Kolja! Dzenita serves as managing director of the Audit Preparedness Unit within Chemonics’ Global Health Supply Chain Office. Once an aid beneficiary herself, she shares her development journey from Bosnia to the U.S. and what draws her to this work. Dzenita is one reason #DevelopmentWorksHere.
1. Can you tell us about your development journey?
I started my journey in development 21 years ago as a translator on the first USAID project in Bosnia — USAID Business Finance. I didn’t have a degree at the time, so I was working full time while studying for my degree and taking care of my daughter. It was worth the sacrifice.
Chemonics recruited me in 2003, and this is where I found my home. With Chemonics, I’ve had opportunities to work in five countries, across six projects, in a dozen different positions, and continuously grow professionally and personally. I have worked in operations, finance, compliance, local governance, and the Office of Business Conduct. Now, as a managing director of the Audit Preparedness Unit in the Global Health Supply Chain Office (GHSCO), I lead a team of individuals who are very enthusiastic about risk assessments, remediation, and proposing strategic solutions to identified gaps. Often, people don’t think of audits in their everyday work. Helping staff understand the importance of audit readiness and ensuring that records are accurate and complete is a priority for my unit. The documents should tell the story, not the people.