HarperCollins Speakers Bureau

Aimee Molloy

Journalist and Acclaimed Author of However Long the Night: Molly Melching’s Journey to Help Millions of African Girls and Women Triumph


  • The Rights of Women and Girls in the Developing World
  • Human Rights and Third-World Development
  • Female Genital Cutting and Other Harmful Traditional Practices
  • Molly Melching: Director of Tostan, the Senegalese-Based Non Governmental Organization Devoted to Social Change and Development
  • Innovative Approaches to Third-World Development


New York

Aimee Molloy, a journalist and co-author of five books, is transfixing readers and audiences alike with her latest groundbreaking book However Long the Night: Molly Melching's Journey to Help Millions of African Women and Girls Triumph (HarperOne). In her book, Molloy tells the heroic and inspiring story of Molly Melching, an American woman whose experience as an exchange student in Senegal led her to found the human rights organization Tostan and dedicate almost four decades of her life to the young girls and women of Africa. Melching has been instrumental in starting a human rights movement throughout West Africa, working to bring an end to traditions such as female genital cutting, child marriage, and gender inequality, which have been entrenched in African culture for thousands of years. In her keynote presentations, Molloy shares Melching's incredible story, brings to light one of the world's most pressing problems, and invites audiences to help spread this urgent message.

In However Long the Night, Molloy presents a riveting biography of Melching, who Forbes called "one of the most powerful women in women's rights" for her work with Tostan to empower African women through education. Melching's groundbreaking strategies have led to more education for the women of Senegal, increased health care, and a greater awareness of the danger of female genital cutting, a traditional practice that is well on its way to being eradicated in Senegal. Molloy explains that Melching's philosophy is to work within a community, allowing the people to make major changes to their culture of their own volition. Unlike many Western organizations that have tried over the years to transform these cultures from the outside, Melching understands that true change can only come from within.

Molloy has collaborated on five books, including, with Newsweek journalist Maziar Bahari, Then They Came for Me: A Family's Story of Love, Captivity, and Survival, which is set to become a major motion pictured directed by Jon Stewart of The Daily Show. She is also the co-author of Jantsen's Gift: A True Story of Grief, Rescue, and Grace, with Pam Cope, and has collaborated on books with Secretary of State John Kerry and Elizabeth Edwards. Molloy holds a bachelor's degree from Duke University and a master's degree from New York University. She lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband and daughter.

Praise for However Long the Night:

"Molly Melching saw a deeply disturbing but deeply entrenched practice and refused to accept that it couldn't be stopped. Her relentless efforts are proof that commitment and partnership can drive transformational change."
-- Hilary Rodham Clinton

"The story of Molly Melching and Tostan proves that determined and loving individuals can accomplish the seemingly impossible--abandonment of a harmful tradition that is thousands of years old."
-- Former President Jimmy Carter

"Melching's incredible journey from Illinois to Africa, from graduate student to great humanitarian, is paralleled by the journey of the countless women touched by her work: a journey to understanding, empowerment and human dignity."
-- Lisa See, bestselling author of Snow Flower and the Secret Fan

"There is no way to overestimate the gift that Tostan and its leader, Molly Melching, have given to the world. The amount of suffering they have alleviated is beyond anything we can gauge. What a story, what a power, and what a blessing."
-- Marianne Williamson, New York Times bestselling author of The Law of Divine Compensation

"Molloy offers a moving account of one woman's struggle to empower African women and challenge tradition...Reading like a novel, this book demonstrates the power of education and grassroots organizing."
-- Publishers Weekly

"Melching's transformation from Midwestern college graduate to thrill-seeking international crusader makes for compelling reading...Molloy has a reporter's knack for selecting and arranging the most salient details of Melching's experiences, and the resulting story is moving and memorable...Uplifting and inspirational."
-- Kirkus Reviews