How the Walleighs Found Purpose & Adventure

Rick & Wendy overlooking Lewa Downs' savannahBoomers Rick and Wendy Walleighs’ book details their inspiring move to Swaziland and then Nairobi, Kenya for a total of 18 months. These are documented on this website and in their book titled From Silicon Valley to Swaziland: How One Couple Found Purpose & Adventure in an Encore Career. It is available on Amazon, all online book retailers, and some Bay Area bookstores. Go to Media Coverage to see all the media featuring the Walleigh’ adventures.

ALL ROYALTIES ARE DONATED TO TECHNOSERVE, the international development organization for which the Walleighs worked, to continue its “Business Solutions to Poverty” in Africa and Latin America, so please buy this book for friends and family!

Meanwhile, enjoy the photos and descriptions of our many travels to nearly 60 countries on six continents.

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Kenya Successes: Springsand Bakery “Puffs Up” its Market

Starting in 2002, Anderson Muchangi Misoniki opened one retail bread and cake bakery outlet in Embu, in Central Kenya. This growth-oriented business was on a US$57,000 run-rate for annual turnover.  He generally employed 12 people full-time. Anderson has a banking and...

Uganda: Modern Capital Kampala to Lush, Mountainous Countryside

Uganda is a lush country with amazing rainfall, soil, and crop diversity.  It has deep valleys, is crossed and bordered by stretches of mountains and dotted with a few huge lakes. In fact Lake Victoria is Africa’s largest with 26,000 square miles of surface (Lake...

Kenya’s Blue-Tongued Giraffes, Adopted Elephants and Tsavo Park’s Man-Eating Lions

Langata Giraffe Sanctuary: Even without U.S. visitors coming to Nairobi, Wendy and Rick wanted to visit the famous Langata Giraffe Sanctuary on the outskirts of Nairobi near the town of Karen (named after Karen Blixen of Out of Africa Fame).  It was founded in the...

Kenya Successes: Visiting Businesses Started by Young Women in Enterprise

During 2007, Wendy accompanied the Young Women in Enterprise (YWE) staff on a visit to Mukuruto some of the businesses which had been started by a few members of this community-based (non- school) YWE clubs.  Mukuru is one of the many “informal settlements” aka slums...

Uganda Successes: Matooke Banana Farm Co-operatives

In August, 2007, Rick and Wendy learned about the then-main TechnoServe Uganda project underway: organizing farmers of Matooke (ma-TOH-kay) bananas, the country's main staple.  These are starch banana which when removed from the still-green skins are cooked, crushed,...

Kenya Successes: Subsistence to Substance to Business Success for Small Banana Farmers & Traders

Many of Kenya’s central and eastern rural poor have a few banana trees in their yards. But despite Kenya’s large overall banana crop, farmers are virtually unconnected to urban wholesalers, retailers, and consumers in cities like Nairobi, Kisumu or Mombasa.*  These...

Yosemite – the Walleighs Favorite Place on Earth

Starting in Summer 1972 when Rick and Wendy took their cross-U.S. trip in their red VW camper between each of their graduate schools, their first visit to Yosemite began their life-long love affair with this amazing place.  On that trip, one of their first guided...

Botswana: About Botswana, Bayiye Culture, Tiny Planes, & Safari Camps

Botswana Has a Unique Combination of Topology: Desert, Salt Pans, Savannah, and Okovango Delta. When most people envision safaris, what they probably are thinking of are animals on broad, open, mostly flat savannahs or grasslands, with the occasional low bushes or...

Uganda: Ngamba Island Chimp Sanctuary

With their son, daughter and friends the Hubers, Wendy and Rick took a 1.5 hour boat ride on Lake Victoria from near Entebbe to reach Ngamba Island Chimp Sanctuary.  Almost as soon as their luggage hit the tent floor*, they were off to view chimps from the platforms...

Botswana: Birds Galore

Maybe the U.S. has as many different varieties of birds as Africa does but the ones typically in urban, suburban and even typical rural areas don’t seem nearly as colorful and diverse as the birds in Africa.  Botswana alone has over 600 species.  Below is just some of...

Western New York in Autumn

The Walleighs’ 2013 road trip was with good friends with whom they had traveled in New Zealand.  In late September 2013 after traversing Quebec Province (go to Quebec or Montreal, etc.  for details on the Canada portion of this trip), they crossed the border into New...

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“If you are nearing the end of your business career and wondering what’s next, you’ll find Rick and Wendy’s experience both illuminating and inspiring.”

Debra Dunn

Consulting Associate Professor & Former Senior Vice President, Stanford University, Hewlett Packard

 “Rick and Wendy Walleigh are my down-to-earth heroes. At the end of Phase 1 of very successful careers–still healthy enough to spend their retirement days skiing, golfing, lunching, traveling in style–they chose instead to take their energy and considerable skills and apply them in some of the poorest communities in the world.

Bruce McNamer

President & CEO of The Community Foundation for the Nation's Capital Region (Washington DC) & former CEO of TechnoServe

“For those seeking an encore to their professional lives, Rick Walleigh’s account of the adventure he and his wife, Wendy, began is as energizing as it is useful. This remarkable book summarizes the factors they considered before volunteering in Africa to foster economic growth through small business development. More importantly, it records their experience with cultural change, new applications for honed skills, the nature of contemporary economic development work in the face of poverty, and the sights, smells, surprises and encounters found in living and working overseas. This is not a “how-to” book for those of us wanting renewal; it is an “I did this and so can you” story that is unique, thought-provoking and encouraging.”

 

Ron Boring

Former Executive Vice President, Vodafone-Japan