Our Organization

InnovationsCZ partners with low-resource communities to identify and address the healthcare inequities that impact their lives. Using a multisectoral approach, InnovationsCZ  transforms the systems that created the problem in the first place through the development of community co-designed prototypes, products, processes, programs, and  platforms. We work to  achieve broad, sustained impact by focusing on the solutions that contribute to the long-term wellbeing and resilience of individuals, communities, and society.

Who We Are

Co-founders, Margaret Salmon, MD, MPH, and Christian Salmon, DSc, employ human-centered design methodology to first identify global healthcare deficits. They then mobilize a multidisciplinary team, working with local populations, to brainstorm ideas on local manufacture of prototypes to design inexpensive solutions using indigenous products. They follow up this work with observational study, validation and randomized control trials, publishing results in peer-reviewed journals. 

With this approach, they have pioneered innovative products, techniques, and services to improve the local provision of healthcare to those living in great poverty and conflict. 

Global health entrepreneurs collaborating with communities to generate creative healthcare solutions for communities in need.

Michael J. Rust received his Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati and is currently an Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Western New England University. He teaches undergraduate courses in bioinstrumentation, physiology, lab-on-a-chip, and global health. Dr. Rust has published numerous papers in professional conferences and technical journals and is a co-inventor on two US patents. Dr. Rust’s work has been funded by the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, American Society for Quality, Kern Entrepreneurial Engineering Network, and the Jenzabar Foundation. His research interests involve the development of point-of-care medical technologies, including bioinstrumentation for use in low-resource settings. Dr. Rust’s expertise includes Guatemalan healthcare, and he has taken over 80 students to the country through course-based field experiences. He is also the co-founder and Chief Technical Officer at New England Breath Technologies, which is developing a non-invasive breathalyzer for monitoring diabetes.

Julia Zeuli’s career has prioritized working with marginalized communities, having led strategic planning and program development initiatives throughout Latin America and the United States. Using participatory action research principles, she partners with local communities to collaboratively identify and address their needs. During her  20-year career she has facilitated intersectoral efforts with community-based organizations, school districts, government agencies, and community coalitions to implement community-based initiatives.  Julia joined InnovationsCZ in 2018 to manage the Education initiative. She has a Masters in Public Health from UC Berkeley.

Rene Badili Zaidi is a native of the Democratic Republic of Congo and has a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Management from ISC. He is currently working on his Master in Public Health at the University of Goma. He has worked for Heal Africa as a medical and the WASH program as a community educator to prevent endemic diseases. In 2013 he joined InnovationsCZ as the in-country Director and Research Assistant. He has played in instrumental role in the following projects: Ultrasound Regional Guided Anesthesia, Improving Lives of Women and Small Farmers, and Commercial Ultrasound Gel Alternative, and is currently working on the upcoming Park Medic Rangers Training Program. He is also currently a board member of “ESVECO asbl’’ a local Congolese Christian Association.   

Luc Malemo graduated from medical school in 2011 in Uganda and returned to the Democratic Republic of Congo where he worked as chief surgeon and then director at HEAL Africa  before taking his current position of Director of Training programs. He is working on a Masters/PhD in in Experimental Surgery under the Jean-Martin Laberge Fellowship in Global Pediatric Surgery at McGill University. His research interests are focused on improving access to surgery with a focus on children born with congenital anomalies. His goal is to train the next generation of Congolese surgeons by leading a surgical residency program in Goma to train more surgeons and improve the access of the millions of Congolese people to safe surgery.