Skip to main content

The Governing Council

Chair of Council

Professor Ezra Maritim

Prof Ezra Maritim earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from University of Nairobi in 1973. Upon graduation that year, he was awarded University of Nairobi staff development scholarship under the sponsorship of the Carnegie Foundation of New York for postgraduate studies at Harvard University and subsequently earned Master of Education and Doctor of Education degrees from Harvard University in 1975 and 1979, respectively.

Prof Maritim spent many years at Kenyatta University both as a teacher and administrator. He served as University Secretary and Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Finance, Planning, and Development & Administration). Between 1983 and 1990 he was seconded to serve as a Deputy Secretary, Kenya National Examinations Council. Other administrative positions he has held in higher education landscape include being a Deputy Coordinator, World Bank supported University Investment Project; Deputy Secretary, Commission for Higher Education and the Vice-Chancellor, Egerton University. His policy and community participation activities have involved being:

  • Chair: Technical Working Committee on the Operationalisation of the Open University of Kenya
  • Chair: Commission for Higher Education
  • Member: Board of Trustees, International Council for Distance Education, Oslo, Norway
  • Member: Board of Trustees, Moi African Institute
  • Member: Board of Directors, African Virtual University
  • Member: Rift Valley Water Catchment Advisory Committee
  • Chair: Rift Valley Water Services Board
  • Secretary General: African Council for Distance Education
  • Chair: Board of Governors, Rift Valley Institute of Science and Technology
  • Member: Kabarak University Council
  • Member: National Environmental Tribunal
  • Chair: School Board of Governors, Kaplong Boys Secondary School
  • Member: Commission for Higher Education
  • Discussant: Constitution Review Process

At the regional level, Prof Maritim served as UNESCO and UNDP consultant on the development of Kigali Institute of Education (currently University of Rwanda-Kigali College of Education) in 1998 and 1999 and the development of education programs to be offered through distance learning; taught as a Visiting Professor at the University of South Africa and the Open University of Tanzania and served as the Coordinator of the Southern African Development Community Centre of Specialisation in Open and Distance Learning (Teacher Education), Dar es Salaam.


Dr Beatrice Muganda Inyagala


Lawrence Muchilwa

As an experienced and certified strategic Information, Cyber Security Management, and IT expert with close to a decade of experience, Lawrence is highly experienced in overseeing IT functions, IT Governance, Information Security, Cyber Security, Project Management, Business Continuity, Data Protection, Professional Development, Risk Management as well as Information Systems Compliance Assessments within highly digitized organizations globally. Moreover, He has a powerful blend of technology vision and business acumen that has resulted in the consistent development of business strategies supported by cost-effective and high-performance IT Infrastructures. Lawrence remains committed to enhancing cyber-security resilience throughout the entire IT ecosystem; people, processes, and technology. He currently heads the information security, leading and managing the risk and cybersecurity teams


Dr Utheri Kanayo (Née Susan Kiragu)


Dr Hilman McOkwiri

Dr Hillman J.K McOkwiri is an accomplished professional with a robust background spanning Product & Experience Research, Service & Product Design, and Behavioral Design. Based in Nairobi, Kenya, they have led innovation efforts in notable companies like Amitruck Ltd and KOKO Networks. As the Head of Products & Innovation at Amitruck Ltd, they have orchestrated the strategic vision for software and product roadmaps, employing a human-centered design approach to tailor commercial products to target markets. At KOKO Networks, they spearheaded new product frameworks and user-driven campaigns, contributing to innovative product offerings.

Furthermore, their expertise extends to Behavioral Economics and Human-Centric Design, showcased during their tenure as the Lead Behavioral Economics & HCD Consultant at Dalberg Design. They have leveraged this proficiency to drive strategies, optimize customer experiences, and craft interventions, leaving a mark in diverse sectors like Fintech, Insure-Tech, and Digital Payments. With a focus on strategic insight and innovation, Hillman J.K McOkwiri stands as a dynamic professional who has consistently championed product development, user-centered design, and strategic growth across varied industries.


Professor Elijah Omwenga


The Open University of Kenya (OUK) is a virtual learning institution deeply committed to advancing education and driving socio-economic growth within Kenya and beyond. Access to higher education has remained a major challenge in Kenya and this has disadvantaged citizens who seek to improve their knowledge, upscale skills and for posterity. Experts have noted that increasing the number of educational institutions so as to match the rate of population growth is an extremely difficult if not impossible solution especially when financial and other resource constraints are considered. Open and Distance Learning approaches, coupled with innovative ICT solutions, have proofed viable alternatives to providing excellent education to millions of people located wherever and whenever by different life circumstances.