In December 2012, Professor Simon Billinge, along with co-organizers Peter Green (University of Michigan) and Sossina Haile (California Institute of Technology), led an enormously successful materials science workshop in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. This two-week workshop, which focused on the salient topic of materials for sustainable energy, was the first official meeting of the Joint U.S.-Africa Materials Science Institute (JUAMI, http://juami2012.blogspot.com, http://www.columbia.edu/cu/juami). Under the tutelage of more than a dozen top materials researchers in the United States, Africa, and Europe, approximately 60 Eastern African and U.S. PhD students, post-docs, and young professors participated in accelerated courses and hands-on tutorials on the topics of organic and inorganic photovoltaics, thermoelectrics, fuel cell materials, sample fabrication and characterization, computational techniques, and much more. In addition to the academic success of the workshop, participants also forged international friendships that promise to yield future collaboration and continued cultural exchange. Congratulations to Professor Billinge for organizing this wonderful event.