We are delighted to welcome Issiaka Ballo to what is now a 5-member translation team based in Bamako. Issiaka has assumed the role of “medical editor,” working closely with Malian health professionals to verify, adapt, and update the source text to fit the West African context. Below are his bio and some of his thoughts on why this is an important project. Please join us in welcoming Issiaka to the Dokotoro team!
Issiaka Ballo has a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Bamako (2006), and a Master’s degree in linguistics (2012) from the Université Gaston Berger de Saint Louis, Sénégal. During college in 2005, he met Mamadu Dukure, a famous activist working on national language promotion, sparking his life-long interest in promoting Mali’s languages. Issiaka helped him to create the first mono-lingual electronic dictionary of Bambara (2005–2007). He also began teaching classes in Bambara transcription to university students as a volunteer. Today, he continues to teach Bambara courses as an adjunct faculty member.