Lumbie Mlambo (BS '01)
Whether it’s pursuits in business, technology, magazine publishing or philanthropy, Texas Woman’s University alumna Lumbie Mlambo’s approach reveals two things: relentless passion and a philosophy of “equanimity,” or balance and composure in the face of adversity.
Originally from a large family in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, Mlambo moved with her husband to Indiana, where she earned an associate’s degree in computer science at Indiana University South Bend. You could say Mlambo discovered her passion for computer science and information technology by accident. While pursuing a degree in accounting “I took a computer course and realized what I was missing. My computer science classes were tough, but I absolutely loved the challenge, so I changed my major,” Mlambo recalls.
She began her career as a software engineer in 1996 at an IT company in Irving, and later worked as a business analyst, project manager and scrum master, or development facilitator, for firms including JP Morgan Chase and Santander Consumer USA, Inc. “I applied what I learned in college and then learned even more on the job. My experiences in business and project management elevated my understanding of the technology business to a higher level. However, it was in software engineering that I had the most fun.”
The stroke was my wake-up call. I realized how important it is to have a support system and to support others, even people you don’t know.
After attending several graduation ceremonies at TWU, Mlambo decided to enroll. “I’ve always loved TWU and what it stood for. I felt this sense of connection and belonging even though I didn’t live on campus,” Mlambo said.
In 2001, Mlambo received her bachelor’s degree in computer science with a minor in mathematics from TWU. That same year, she suffered a stroke that left her partially paralyzed. She has since recovered, but the experience motivated her to embark upon a new life path focused on giving back to her local and international communities.
“The stroke was my wake-up call. I realized how important it is to have a support system and to support others, even people you don’t know,” said Mlambo.
The inspiration for her lifestyle magazine, Equanimity, was borne out of her experience and her newfound purpose to “motivate, empower and encourage people not to give up on their dreams but to realize that they have a potential to rise, be creative, and be who they want to be while participating in their own community.”
I’ve always loved TWU and what it stood for. I felt this sense of connection and belonging even though I didn’t live on campus.
In 2013, she founded the non-profit organization, J.B. Dondolo, Inc., which provides services to impoverished communities. The charity is named after her father, J.B. Dondolo, who “loved people and loved helping the less fortunate. He started the Hospital Hope project at Igusi to make sure the hospital had basic necessities, such as clean water and delivery beds for mothers.” Unfortunately, he passed away before he could finish his project, but Mlambo is carrying his legacy forward.
J.B. Dondolo and Equanimity recently hosted a charity gala in Dallas. Proceeds from the event purchased clean water for the same Igusi community hospital her father helped. This fall, the charity is launching a fundraising campaign and sponsoring a run/walk event to benefit the hospital. The aim is to reduce infant mortality and to keep more girls in school.
Even with two degrees, Mlambo considers her education to be ongoing. “It’s fulfilling to know that a small act of kindness can change someone’s life. I’m learning so much from the people I’m trying to help.”
Page last updated 1:05 PM, October 1, 2018