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September 15, 2015

PHII welcomes Senior Business Analyst Wais Said

PHII’s Requirements Lab is excited to welcome a new Senior Business Analyst to its team, Wais Said—who has over two decades of experience in leading information technology projects in the health, finance and political fields. In his new role, Wais will be responsible for coordinating and implementing technology plans and strategies. 

As a high school student in Turkey, Wais was always interested in exploring computer science—a brand new field that was just emerging as he prepared for college. He entered into a computer science program as a freshman at Middle East Technical University in Ankara, Turkey before completing his studies at Georgia State University, where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in information systems. Wais began building his background in health care, working for established organizations like McKesson, the Georgia Hospital Association and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). As the IT director for McKesson, Wais led a team in designing and building a system that could process 15 million paper and electronic claims per month. Using information from that system and GIS, he helped build a disease surveillance database to learn how diseases were being tracked in Georgia.

Wais’s passion for information technology and health care solidified when he became the principal program advisor on a USAID-funded project that he still holds dear. As the team leader, Wais increased sustained self-revenue in southern Afghan municipalities and implemented IT infrastructure for a solar-powered water purification system that helped prevent waterborne diseases by giving children access to clean drinking water in rural Afghanistan. He also helped build capacities and develop leadership skills among locals in southern Afghan municipalities, leaving a lasting impact on the country. For Wais, that has been his most rewarding work so far.

“I never thought I could make a difference in people’s lives with an IT background, because I thought it was all just numbers and computation. The USAID project gave me a different perspective on how to use my abilities and capabilities in a place that’s really needed,” he says.

That’s why Wais is excited to join the Task Force for Global Health—because he feels that it is a place where he can continue making a difference in children’s lives. He’s most eager to begin work on CHAMPS, a project PHII is collaborating with the Emory Global Health Institute on to understand and prevent childhood mortality in developing countries. Still, Wais says he hasn’t yet experienced his biggest professional accomplishment, but he is confident that it’s getting close.

“I’m positive it can happen here at PHII because I’m working at the right place, at the right time, with the right team, and for the right cause.”

When Wais isn’t implementing IT strategies, he plays soccer—a sport he has enjoyed since he was eight—for a league called The Silverbacks, indulges in outdoor activities, and travels. The coolest places he’s visited so far? Spain, Afghanistan and St. Lucia.