Squads Abroad is a 501c3 non-profit organization under our parent company Global Brigades, a Platinum Level Guidestar member for Financial Transparency. Since 2004, our organization has collectively mobilized more than 70,000 international volunteers to help resolve global health and economic disparities around the world.

Team

More than 150 full-time staff working around the world to achieve our mission and vision.

Meet the Teams

  • Ghana Team
  • Greece Team
  • Guatemala Team
  • Honduras Team
  • International Team
  • Nicaragua Team
  • Panama Team

Country Board of Directors

  • Canada Board of Directors
  • Germany Board of Directors
  • UK Board of Directors
  • USA Board of Directors

Ghana Team

Benson Adjei

Executive Director

Benson Adjei

Benson has been part of Global Brigades since 2015 when he joined the Ghana team as Operations Manager. He later moved on to become the Country Manager responsible for a small in-country team that worked to ensure that GBs impact and presence in our partner communities were sustained for 2015 and 2016 when we had very limited brigades going to Ghana and we were working through partnerships with local public and private organizations. Benson has more than 14 years of development work experience with economic empowerment, social entrepreneurship and international volunteers’ management as his areas of expertise. Prior to joining Global Brigades, Benson had worked with Ghana’s National Board for Small Scale Industries, Rural Enterprises Program and Think Impact as Country Manger for Ghana. Benson has a degree in Agricultural Science from the University of Cape Coast in Ghana, he is an alumni of the German International Development Training Organization; GIZ and a trained Kaizen Consultant by the Japanese International Development Co-operation Agency (JICA). Through his leadership for the Ghana team, a sustainable model for the medical program that hinges on a strong partnership with existing health facilities of the Ministry of Health in the Ekumfi District of Ghana has been created and it is offering a unique experience to volunteers that travel to Ghana.
Dr. Cornelius Normeshie

Medical Brigades Manager

Dr. Cornelius Normeshie

Dr. Cornelius Normeshie, is an alumnus of the University of Ghana Medical School. He joined Global Brigades in the summer of 2012 as a medical officer and subsequently became the medical program lead in charge of planning, assessing, implementing and monitoring all medical brigade activities.He has been committed to not only providing high medical care but passionate about promulgating public health measures including strengthening partnerships that will improve the health of populations in deprived communities. Dr. Cornelius is an adaptable and responsible person with tremendous leadership skills having led the medical students association of Ghana in various capacities. He has also participated in several global health conferences across Africa, Asia and Europe. Currently, he lives in Accra with his wife and daughter. He loves reading, watching soccer and playing chess.
Emmanuel Ackah

WASH Program Manager

Emmanuel Ackah

Emmanuel pursued a joint Master of Science program in Water Supply and Environmental Sanitation from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and UNESCO-IHE in the Netherlands. He also holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Water and Sanitation from the University of Cape Coast and later pursued a post-graduate project management program from the Institute of Project Management Professionals Ghana, where he was certified as Project Management Consultant. Prior to joining Global Brigades Ghana, Emmanuel worked at Training Research and Networking for Development (TREND) as Water Supply/Sanitary Engineer, where he led a team of Engineers and other professionals to implement several governmental and non-governmental projects successfully in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH). While in TREND, he was promoted to the position of WASH Project Officer based on his professional project management capabilities and experiences. Emmanuel has a nurtured passion, interest and motivation in WASH related projects, especially in organisations that have mandate close to his career goals and direct bearing in providing safedrinking water and access to improved sanitation facilities for the underserved communities and the vulnerable in society. He is married, committed to family life and blessed with two children.
Shafiu Shaibu

Operations Director

Shafiu Shaibu

Shaibu Shafiu holds a Certificate of Advance Study in Project Monitoring and Evaluation, a Chartered Accountant (CA), holds MBA in Finance and Bachelor of Commerce. He further holds a Diploma in Social Work Studies, Diploma in Project Management, Certificate in Understanding Cross-Cultural Communication in International Business and Certificate in Inclusion of Minorities in Community Development. Shafiu has over 18 years work experience with between public service (academia), the NGO sector, in livelihood integrated program design and co-ordination, and senior level financial management (partnership, negotiation and fundraising) and 9 years with INGO. He has worked as Enterprise Development and Market Access Coordinator, Finance Manager, Director of Finance and Administration and as Senior Specialist in Accounting and Auditing. Joining GB at this time in Shafiu’s career creates the room for exciting times for him to bring to bear years of accumulated experience in NGO program development, financial management, M&E and IT to discharge an operations intensive position and he is excited to apply all of the programs and Global Brigades.
Edgar Adda

Monitoring & Evaluation Manager

Edgar Adda

Edgar joined Global Brigades Ghana in August 2018 as Operations Manager. Having spent the early parts of his life in the Northern part of Ghana where poverty is predominant, Edgar has committed his life to working with organizations with the mission to improve the lives of the rural poor. He wants to see a world where everybody irrespective of race, education, geographical location, or gender has access to the basic necessities of life. Having worked with various development projects in Northern and southern parts of Ghana, Edgar has many years of experience in development.  He currently supports country operations of Global Brigades in Ghana by ensuring all the necessary structures and logistics are provided for effective Brigade and other program execution. Prior to joining Global Brigades, Edgar served as National Coordinator for Fair Trade Ghana Network, a Network that supports Fair trade certified producers in Ghana. He has a Master of Arts Degree in Migration Studies from the University of Ghana,  a Post Graduate Certificate in International Development Studies from the University of Oslo, Norway, and a Certificate in Project Planning and Management from the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration(GIMPA).
Charles Asante

Monitoring & Evaluation Technician

Charles Asante

Charles has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Natural Resources Management from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science Technology- Kumasi. Prior to joining Global Brigades Ghana, Charles worked in a non-governmental organization coordinating various projects of Natural Resources Conservation in the Western Region of Ghana where a bulk of Ghana’s forest exist. His contribution as Field Coordinator for a World Bank sponsored program led to the formation of a successful Community Resource Management Area (CREMA) in Enchi. Charles brings extensive knowledge in community projects and data collection to the Global Brigades team.  Charles enjoys researching, reading Christian literature and hanging out with friends.
Freda Appiah

Accountant

Freda Appiah

Freda holds a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of Cape Coast and she is currently in the final stage of qualifying as a Chartered Accountant with the Institute of Chartered Accountants Ghana. Prior to joining Global Brigades in Ghana she worked as an Administrative & Finance officer with the Insurance Brokerage firm Ascoma Ghana Limited, and later as Credit Officer in a Community Cooperative Credit Union. Freda became  interested in Global Brigades due to her desire to be part of a young team that enables her to make use of her creativity and initiative to contribute to a better life for the underprivileged.
Emmanuel Yorke

Accounting Assistant

Emmanuel Yorke

Bio coming soon.
Fortune Omega

Pharmacy Technician

Fortune Omega

Bio coming soon.
Mike Suarez

Ghana/Panama Program Associate Manager

Mike Suarez

Mike joined the Global Brigades team in November 2018. Having pursued a career in Telecommunications at a younger age, he started collaborating with non-profit work in 2012, coordinating volunteer programs in Panama and El Salvador, actively participating as volunteer programs trainer, champion and manager. Mike also lived almost two years in the United States, collaborating as a data analyst and customer service coordinator in Madison, Wisconsin for a second-tier microfinance institution, creating impact in Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Ecuador and Peru. Mike has experience engaging multicultural teams and programs. He fell in love with Global Brigades' Holistic Model, considering it is the path to creating a more equal society.

Greece Team

Tina Voulgari

Executive Director

Tina Voulgari

Tina holds a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from the Athens University (Greece) and a Master of Arts in Marketing Communications from Bournemouth University (UK). She is the Executive Director of Global Brigades Greece, working with the local GB team, the Greek Health Department and other partners to provide primary health care for asylum seekers at refugee camps in Greece. Prior to working for Global Brigades, Tina worked for College Year in Athens, where among other duties, she helped US students volunteer with various NGOs supporting refugees and migrants in Greece. Tina enjoys spending most of her free time close to the nature, practicing yoga, scuba diving, hiking, and rock climbing.
Christos Aidinis

Operations Director

Christos Aidinis

Bio coming soon.

Guatemala Team

Dr. Gladys Turcios

Health Programs Manager

Dr. Gladys Turcios

Dr. Turcios was born in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. She studied at the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Honduras where she graduated on April 2014 as a Medical Doctor. Dr. Turcios joined Global Brigades on February 2016 as a Program Lead for the Referral Program. The Patient Referral program sources donations to assists patients, identified during Medical Brigades, with procedures and surgeries. Dr. Turcios is also working on the development of Global Brigades' Surgical program, which which will assist referral patients, as well as other patients from communities near Hospital de Ojojona, where the Surgical Brigades will take place. Dr. Gladys has moved within the organization to support other programs such as the Community Health Worker Program in Honduras. In December 2019, Dr. Gladys moved to Guatemala, where she will take on a new role as Health Programs Manager for Global Brigades operations in Guatemala.
Eddy Tian

Program Technician

Eddy Tian

Bio coming soon.
Oscar Fajardo

Operations Manager

Oscar Fajardo

Oscar joined Global Brigades in January 2014 as a translator in Honduras. He fell in love with the organization from his very first brigade in the community of Palo Verde. Despite the rainy, mud, and cold week in Honduras during the Public Health Brigade, he went home happy and realized Global Brigades was what he was looking for. From there, Oscar has grown to wear many hats for the Honduras operations including coordinating brigades, preparing communities as a medical technician, an operations assistant, and supervisor of brigade logistics. Oscar now takes his experience with Global Brigades to the next step as the first Operations Managers for Global Brigades in Guatemala as we expand our operations. Prior to Global Brigades, Oscar studied at Escuela Normal Mixta del Sur in Honduras and graduated as an elementary teacher. He then earned a scholarship to obtain an associate’s degree in electronics and computers at Wabash Valley College in Mt. Carmel, Illinois. After school, Oscar started work as a production supervisor in United Hospital Services and later as a production supervisor of a new plan for Harlan Bakeries, Inc. We are thrilled to have Oscar’s passion, energy, and operations experience as part of our team. When he is not supporting the work of passionate volunteers and community development, Oscar enjoys watching all kinds of sports in his free time.

Honduras Team

Luis Torres

Executive Director

Luis Torres

Luis joined Global Brigades Honduras in January 2012 when his first role with a brigade was serving as a driver. Since then, Luis has transitioned to various roles including translator, coordinator, HR Manager, Operations Director, Administrative Director, and in 2016, Executive Director. Luis is passionate about the work that Global Brigades does in our communities and likes being able to make a difference in his home country. Luis graduated from the Catholic University in Honduras with a degree in Finance. He has held previous leadership positions in  the financial sector as he has worked for banks and insurance companies in Honduras. One of his many contributions to the organization was helping expand programs execution to the southern region of the country.
Mario Quan

Honduras Administrative Director

Mario Quan

Mario received a bachelor's degree in business administration from Universidad Catolíca de Honduras , later to receive a master's in project development from the same institution. Mario first joined the  Global Brigades team in 2012 as a driver, later to apply his skills as Administrative Director to the Honduras office. In 2015, Mario moved to support the operations of Global Brigades in Nicaragua and returned to Honduras in February 2017 to continue his role in organization administration. Prior to Global Brigades, Mario has held positions of  Credit Analyst and Telemarketing Supervisor in two different banks in Honduras. When he is not supporting the daily operations of the Honduras office, Mario enjoys spending time with his family, especially his wife and son.
Dr. Jenny Najera

Medical Brigades Director

Dr. Jenny Najera

Dr. Nájera joined Global Brigades in the Winter of 2006. Her first Medical Brigade was as a volunteer translating for Doctors. That same year, she then began to work as a temporary employee assisting with Medical Brigades. In November 2010, she was promoted to the Medical Brigades Program Lead, in charge of programming and logistics. She also started establishing relationships with health authorities and developing protocols of safety and security for Global Brigades' volunteers. Prior to joining Global Brigades as a permanent employee, Dr. Nájera worked for the Ministry of Health and a Private Clinic as an attending doctor and for 1 year was the official doctor of Honduran Delegation in international events. Dr. Nájera received her degree as a Medical Doctor in 2005 from the National University of Honduras. She has 2 years of residency in Pediatrics and has participated in several forums and symposiums of vector transmitted diseases (Dengue- Malaria-Chikunguyia and Zika), as well as in various national and international congresses. Dr. Nájera is currently pursuing her Masters in Epidemiology at the Central American Technological University.
Dr. Osiris Peña

Dental Brigades Manager

Dr. Osiris Peña

Bio coming soon.
David Amador

Economic Development Manager

David Amador

David Amador has spent most of his professional career in the financial sector in Honduras and Central America beginning with a role as Junior Executive officer in Bancahorro in 1994. By 1996 he became a Senior Executive with the most important portfolio loans in the bank, amounting to $ 85.5 million. In 2000 he was selected to work with the leadership group to management the fusion between the most important banks in Honduras. By 2002 David became the National Branch Manager for Group Promerica in Honduras, overseeing 10 branches with 250 employees under his leadership, between loans, savings, credit cards, and certificates of deposit. At the same time he managed two projects in the bank- implementation of  the electronic bank transactions via website and development of electronic checking accounts for the medium enterprises in Central America where Group Promerica had presence. in 2004, he receive the opportunity to work in the Central America Bank for Economic Integration, and organization considered the most prominent development bank in Central America where David managed  portfolio operations of $108.3 million in three years. In 2007 he moved to United States to live in Naperville, Illinois while his soon received special treatment for an illness. During this time, David worked for the Honduras Consulate in Chicago where he had the opportunity to assist many Honduran immigrants in the Unites States. David returned to Honduras for personal reasons in 2016 and began to worry about the communities in Honduras, thinking of ways to apply is skills and experience to improve lives. He found Global Brigades in March 2017 and joined the team as  Economic Development Director in Honduras. David is a graduate from the National Autonomous University of Honduras in Business Administration, and also holds masters degrees in Business Administration and Financial Corporations. David plans to continue study to receive a doctorate degree in Economics and begin teaching in private universities in Honduras.
Marco Landa

Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Program Manager

Marco Landa

Marco Landa, a civil engineer by trade, brings extensive experience and passion to the Global Brigades team. Marco has worked from fast food franchising in Honduras, in the telecommunications industry as a resident engineer, and  as independent consultant  and project manager. His vast experiences, diligence and passion for his work,  and  commitment bringing access to clean water and sanitation infrastructure community partners make Marco a valuable member of the Global Brigades team. Marco earned a bachelor degree in civil engineering from la Universidad Católica in Honduras.  He has been a lifelong longer committed to furthering his education to positively contribute to his work. Since starting with Global Brigades, Marco has completed his Masters in Business Administration with with a focus on finance. Additionally, he´s completed various additional certifications and courses in areas of positioning and funding in NGOs, total quality management, and water system design. When he is not supporting his team or developing partnerships with his program, Marco enjoys reading, spending time with family, traveling, and trying restaurants that serve international foods.
Eduardo Rodriguez

Accounting Manager

Eduardo Rodriguez

Bio coming soon.
Yeny Martinez

Purchasing Manager

Yeny Martinez

Bio coming soon.
Maggie Sandoval

Honduras PA Manager

Maggie Sandoval

Maggie joined Global Brigades in February of 2017 as a Program Associate based in Honduras. Maggie found out about Global Brigades through a friend, researched the organization, and determined that Global Brigades was directly aligned with her passions and gifts. Maggie is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Finance at a private university in Tegucigalpa called UNITEC, The Central American Technological University. She is passionate about working alongside other cultures and has a heart for the people of Honduras. Maggie received her B.A. in International Business from Auburn University and graduated December of 2015. Prior to working at Global Brigades, Maggie worked in financial advising in Birmingham, Alabama for a year, and specifically focused on retirement savings. Although the financial landscape in Honduras is vastly different, Maggie is interested in the financial culture of Hondurans as compared to that of Americans. Maggie is passionate about empowerment through education, and she firmly believes that Hondurans and Americans alike need to understand their full potential and break the boundaries that limit them. Maggie is excited about Global Brigade’s model and is passionate about working alongside the team in Honduras as well as the various volunteers that brigade each year. Maggie enjoys cooking, hiking, doing yoga, and spending time with family when she is not on brigade, in class, or working with the local team in Tegucigalpa.  
Marlon Lemus

Assistant Accountant

Marlon Lemus

Bio coming soon.

International Team

Erik Werner

Squads Abroad Co-Founder and Division President

Erik Werner

Erik Werner has been working in the volunteer student travel field for the past 25 years.  As a former Peace Corps Volunteer, High School Spanish teacher,  Service-Travel Company Owner, and father of three children, he is a passionate believer in the profound educational outcomes these programs provide.   “I thoroughly enjoy the process of collaborating with teachers, parents, and students to make these experiences a reality and to provide young adults with the opportunity to expand their global horizons and feel empowered to make a difference.”   When Erik is not planning trips abroad he can be found skiing, biking, and spending time with his family in Boulder, Colorado.  Erik can be reached anytime at: ewerner@squads.ngo
Courtney Skalley

Squads Abroad Program Associate

Courtney Skalley

Courtney Skalley always knew she wanted to keep supporting Global Brigades to support sustainable development work after volunteering on four brigades throughout college. Once she graduated from TCU in 2019 with a degree in biology, she decided to take a leap and move from her home in Washington state to Panama City, working with the newest sector of Global Brigades: Squads Abroad. Although Courtney gave up snow skiing in her transition to Panama, she now loves exploring all aspects of Panama, from the indigenous communities in the Darien region to funky rooftop restaurants in Casco Viejo.  Courtney can be reached anytime at cskalley@squads.ngo.
Dr. Shital Vora

Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Shital Vora

Dr. Shital Vora is Co-Founder and CEO of Global Brigades, overseeing Global Brigades’ human resources and talent programs in addition to administrative policies and University relationships. Prior to dedicating to Global Brigades full time, she had spent 4 years working as a Doctor of Physical Therapy focusing on Orthopedics and Sports Medicine for one of the nation’s largest and most successful orthopedic practices in Chicago. In 2003, while completing her degree at Marquette University, Shital established the very first medical brigade club, which eventually developed into the model that is used today throughout the organization. From one club at Marquette, Shital and the GB leadership team has started over 450 active groups who travel to Honduras, Panama, Nicaragua, and Ghana in providing primary health care and education in rural communities. Within Global Brigades, Shital had previously worked as the CEO of Health Programs and Chief Program Officer prior to taking on the human resources role. Shital has spent much of her time abroad with Global Brigades understanding the importance of health in developing countries. She has been actively involved with not only the expansion of the organization, but overall strategies for staff empowerment. Her focus is to involve staff in these strategies not only to provide communities in need, but also challenge the minds of young individuals who are embarking and building on their professional career. Shital is passionate about creating leadership opportunities for all staff, putting people first, and the “human” side of human resources. Shital sits on the Marquette University Health Sciences advisory board, and also has been recognized at Marquette University’s Young Alumnus of the Year in 2009. Shital graduated with high honors at with a degree in Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences and received her Doctorate in Physical Therapy as well as her PhD in Orthopedics.
Vanessa Lopez

President & COO

Vanessa Lopez

Vanessa Lopez is the President and Chief Operations Officer for Global Brigades, Inc. Since 2008, she has led the organization's marketing, financial, and administrative operations. Over the years, she has focused on developing internal strategies to strengthen efficiency and effectiveness of operations. Vanessa has led implementation of creating complex organizational structures to allow Global Brigades to operate and manage 11 entities across different countries, while maintaining a shared mission and brand. Vanessa is also a co-founder of Global Brigades Association's for-profit subsidiary, Global Brigades Ventures, Inc, where she provides marketing and accounting consulting services to start-up social enterprises. Vanessa is on the founding team of Global Brigades Venture's first start-up project, Empowered.org, a social movement platform that provides online fundraising and volunteer/donor management tools to organizations. Vanessa has been invited as a guest lecturer in local Seattle universities such as the University of Washington Bothell, Seattle Institute of Oriental Medicine, and Seattle Pacific University, on topics ranging from non-profit finances to marketing. Vanessa graduated from the University of Washington, Seattle, where she earned a B.S. in Business Administration with a focus in Accounting.
Pallav Vora

Chief Legal Officer

Pallav Vora

Pallav is the Chief Legal Officer for Global Brigades, Inc. and oversees and provides legal support to all Global Brigades entities worldwide. Since joining Global Brigades full-time in 2012, Pallav has served as Global Brigades' General Counsel and works closely with the leadership of all Global Brigades entities to strengthen operations by assessing and managing risk, implementing appropriate practices and controls, and providing advice and counsel on a broad range of legal issues critical to the organization's mission. Pallav also sits on the Board of Directors of Global Brigades Ventures and the International Volunteer Programs Association. Prior to joining Global Brigades, Pallav was an Associate Attorney at the Law Offices of Joseph V. Roddy, where he worked as a litigator on a wide-variety of civil and criminal matters in both state and federal courts, including administrative hearings, civil rights litigation, personal injury, appeals and criminal defense. Pallav received his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Richmond, and received his J.D. from John Marshall Law School. He is admitted to practice before the Illinois State Bar and U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, and is a member of the Illinois State Bar Association.
Nancy Amador

Chief Compliance Officer

Nancy Amador

Nancy joined Global Brigades October 1, 2008 as accountant and administrator for Global Brigades Honduras, she helped on the structure of financial and administrative procedures for the grantee entities and provided support to advising and program associate teams. In January 2013 she was moved to be a part of Global Brigades USA finance team as VP of Finance, in this position she has been working with the bookkeeping for Global Brigades USA, Canada and United Kingdom, she also provides support on the audits for these countries and is now running financial compliance auditors for grantee entities. Nancy received her Bachelor's degree in accounting from the UNAH and a Master's degree in finance from UNITEC. Her previous experiences are all related to accounting, administration and finance and each company that she worked with helped her gain more knowledge as well as long lasting friendships. Global Brigades has been a great experience for her as she always wanted to work with an organization where she could be a part of helping others.
Steven Atamian

Chief Strategy Officer

Steven Atamian

Inspired by the potential impact university students could make in rural Honduran communities, Steve helped co-found what would become Global Brigades in 2004. In addition to many programmatic contributions around the holistic model, Steve led GB’s decentralized student-led movement and its strategy for financial sustainability. From 2004-2008, Steve led Global Brigades as a volunteer while employed full-time with Deloitte, where he supported the design and implementation of their corporate social responsibility strategy in the Pacific Southwest region of the United States. In 2007, when Global Brigades was officially registered as a nonprofit in the United States, Steve was named the CEO by the board of directors and served in that position until 2016. Currently, Steve holds the position of Empowerment Officer and splits his time between high level strategy, budgeting, and pushing to maintain the student-led culture that the organization was built upon. Steve is a graduate from the University of Southern California. He resides in Seattle with his wife and baby daughter. Locally, he has contributed as an affiliate faculty member at the University of Washington at Bothell, teaching classes in social entrepreneurship and nonprofit management.
Ben Erker

Director of Impact & Evaluation

Ben Erker

Ben Erker joined Global Brigades in January 2009 to help develop and coordinate the Water Brigades program in Honduras.  Four the next four years he managed the implementation of numerous clean water projects, while coordinating over sixty Water Brigades.  From 2013 – 2015, Ben worked as Development Program Officer in Honduras, overseeing the operation of the holistic model and its program teams in the country.   Starting in January 2016, Ben began his current position as GB Director of Impact & Evaluation in charge of impact measurement and reporting, program monitoring and evaluation, and supervising local M&E teams in GB’s programming countries. Ben received his B.S. in Civil & Environmental Engineering from Bucknell University, which included a semester of study in Perth, Western Australia. During his time at Bucknell Ben made his first of many trips to Honduras which inspired him to further pursue water and sanitation issues in developing countries.  Ben went on to receive his M.S. in Civil & Environmental Engineering from the University of California - Davis focusing on water quality, drinking water and wastewater treatment. While at UC Davis, Ben spent a month in rural Uganda working on sustainable drinking water and sanitation solutions.  Before joining Global Brigades, Ben participated in a wide range of research projects investigating the effect of microorganisms on arsenic concentration in groundwater, small water system treatment techniques, anaerobic digestion of food waste, and evaporation effects of development in watersheds.
Juan David Villegas

Director of Strategic Initiatives

Juan David Villegas

Juan David joined Global Brigades in December 2014 as a brigade interpreter, soon after that, he began coordinating business brigades full time with GB. In January 2017, Juan David became the Business Program Manager, overseeing all of the Business program's staff and projects in Panama. Juan David was born and raised in Medellin, Colombia. From an early age, he has been an advocate of the power of financial inclusion and entrepreneurship in transforming people's lives. At the age of 17, he moved to Bournemouth, UK, to study and received his Higher National Diploma degree in Business Studies at MLS Management College, England. In the last 7 years, Juan David has been to 25 countries investigating the impact of business, commerce, and entrepreneurship in economic development worldwide. Juan David holds a certification of Development Project Management by the Interamerican Development Bank and Strategic Managerial Skills Certificate from the Interamerican University of Panama. Fun fact: Juan David's first brigade was actually a Medical brigade which he attended as an interpreter and where by chance there was a business brigade staying at the same lodging facility. After a 5-hour conversation with the former Business Program Manager, Juan David fell in love with the program, canceled a flight to Korea, and changed his career path to dedicate himself to working with economic and social development programs with Global Brigades.
Arman Nadershahi

Co-Founder

Arman Nadershahi

Arman Nadershahi is an entrepreneur and multi-faceted attorney. Arman co-founded Global Brigades, Inc., as well as several successful medical device startup companies, including one startup that was acquired and another that had an IPO on NASDAQ. Arman also serves as the in-house counsel for the Alfred E. Mann Institute for Biomedical Engineering at the University of Southern California. Arman’s legal expertise includes intellectual property, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, nonprofits, and startups. Earlier in his career, Arman practiced intellectual property law at Knobbe, Martens, Olson & Bear, LLP, where he focused on patent prosecution, licensing, and intellectual property litigation in the fields of biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and medical devices. Arman graduated with distinction from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a BA in Zoology and English Literature. He holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Minnesota Law School, a Master’s in Biological Science from the University of Minnesota, an MS in Regulatory Science from the University of Southern California School of Pharmacy, and an MBA from the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California.
Alexa Schmidt

Sr. Marketing Manager

Alexa Schmidt

Alexa Boldt is a global citizen who acts locally, wherever she is, with boldness and kindness. She joined Global Brigades as a Program Associate in Honduras in 2014, and with a capacity for team encouragement and leadership she later took on the Program Associate Manager role. She lived in Central America until 2016, and now serves as the stateside Communications Associate. In this role, Alexa acts as Global Brigades' central storyteller and ensures all internal and external stakeholders are well-informed. Her drive to tell Global Brigades' stories stems from the joy that comes from celebrating programmatic accomplishments with community members, staff, and volunteers.

Alexa received a B.A in Communications and a minor in Multimedia from California Lutheran University. Prior to her work with Global Brigades, she dedicated time to volunteer with non-profit organizations in Kenya, the Dominican Republic, and along the West Coast of the USA. In addition to her work with Global Brigades, Alexa is a yoga instructor and advocate for a holistic approach to health and wellness.
Daniel Klingelhoets

People Operations Manager

Daniel Klingelhoets

Daniel joined the Global Brigades team as a Honduras Program Associate in June 2016. During his undergraduate career, Daniel got to know Global Brigades through a partner organization and participated on three Medical Brigades to Nicaragua with Marquette University. With the foundation of Global Brigades stemming from Marquette University roots, the natural alignment for Daniel to join the Global Brigades team was a no-brainer. In addition to his work with in-country program teams and volunteers from around the world, Daniel brings marketing and communications experience from previous roles. In June 2017 he transitioned a role as People Operations Coordinator, and now People Operations Manager,working to execute the human resources function, support, and initiatives to Global Brigades’ international teams. In May 2016, Daniel received a Bachelors of Science degree in Human Resources and Marketing, with a minor in Spanish for the Professions from Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI. Prior to Global Brigades, Daniel ran a small start-up and worked closely with student entrepreneurs and local small businesses to build their brands. In December 2018 Daniel met the requirements for SHRM-CP certification as prescribed by the Society for Human Resource Management and is now a SHRM-CP certified human resource professional. When he’s not engaging with staff and volunteers, or looking for creative ways to define #GB365, you can find him out-and-about with his camera, exploring Honduras, or sipping on a hot beverage in a cafe.
Nicole Jollimore

Volunteer Engagement Manager

Nicole Jollimore

Nicole Jollimore is the Volunteer Engagement Manager for Global Brigades. In this role, Nicole is passionate about raising awareness about ethical volunteering and the social determinants of health, inspiring global citizens, and growing the Global Brigades movement. Intrigued by Global Brigades’ holistic approach and focus on empowerment in sustainable development, Nicole participated in her first brigade in 2011 and quickly realized a passion for global health. Following three more Public Health brigades to Honduras and increasing leadership involvement Nicole officially joined the Global Brigades team as a Chapter Advisor in Nicaragua in 2015. Her positive experiences and increasing interest in on the ground programming led to her transition into the role of Program Associate in Honduras in 2016. Having spent two years abroad in Central America, Nicole moved back home in 2017 to Nova Scotia, Canada where she was excited by the opportunity to work more closely with volunteers as a Senior Volunteer Engagement Associate, and most recently as the Volunteer Engagement Manager. Nicole graduated from Mount Allison University as a varsity athlete with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology, and a minor in Biology. In addition to her international work with Global Brigades, Nicole also enjoys engaging in her community as a special needs soccer coach and a volunteer in the emergency department at the IWK children's hospital.
Dr. Luisa Castejón

Medications Coordinator

Dr. Luisa Castejón

Luisa started with Global Brigades in December 2007, a few months after graduating from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Honduras (UNAH), as the first Pharmacist to accompany medical brigades. It was a challenge for her to start completely from scratch, but gradually she has added new procedures to properly dispense medications. Luisa has worked as the pharmacy lead in Honduras, in charge of all pharmacists working on medical brigades in Honduras, until February 2019 when she transitioned to her current role as Medications Coordinator supporting medication and donation procurement for all Global Brigades countries internationally. From a young age, Luisa knew she wanted to study pharmacy. As a child, she would visit the hospital and admire the doctors and women health workers and knew that one day, she would be one of them. Shortly after graduation, she interviewed with Global Brigades and realized that the position was her dream job. On every brigade, she has been able to serve fellow Hondurans from the most neglected communities while enjoying Honduras' beautiful scenery.
Alyssa Smith

Volunteer Engagement Associate

Alyssa Smith

Allie joined the Global Brigades team in July 2019. She loves working with Global Brigades because of the organization’s dedication to community partnerships and sustainable impact. Allie also thoroughly enjoys working with a multi-cultural team and interacting with volunteers from across the globe. Allie brings experience leading brigades and serving as a Campus Chairperson to the team. Allie earned a Bachelor of Arts in international studies and spanish from Indiana University – Bloomington. When she is not empowering volunteers around the globe, Allie love visiting coffee shops in new cities and loves to read, cook, and bake!
Anna Jamieson

Volunteer Engagement Associate

Anna Jamieson

Anna joined the Global Brigades team as a Chapter Advisor in June of 2018. Anna’s introduction to Global Brigades was during her first year at Mount Allison University and she has been involved since! Anna has participated in the Water and Public Health programs in Honduras and led the Water Chapter at Mount Allison for a year, followed by a year as Campus Chairperson. During her undergraduate degree she learned a lot about Global Brigades as an organization, the Holistic Model and sustainable development. Anna really identifies with Global Brigades commitment to holistic sustainable development and is so excited to share these values with everyone looking to start a chapter on their campus! In May of 2018, Anna received a Bachelor's degree in Environmental Science with minors in Biology and Political Science. Anna’s passion for Global Brigades at the campus level led into pursuing a full-time opportunity with Global Brigades following graduation. Long term Anna wants to pursue a Masters degree in Development Practice and Sustainability and pursue a lifelong career in sustainable international development. When Anna is not at the office she enjoys being outdoors, reading, hiking and trying out new cafes!
Sydney Colbert

Marketing Associate

Sydney Colbert

Bio coming soon.
Erika Amador

Accountant

Erika Amador

Erika joined Global Brigades in the summer of 2014 as an accountant assistant providing accounting and financial support for the accounting process making transfers, processing refunds, posting manual transaction on dashboard ans helping with accounting reports. Starting in 2017, Erika is taking responsibility in the Canada and United Kingdom accounting process. Erika received her Accountant degree from the Autonomous National University of Honduras in 2014 and a English Diploma from The National Pedagogical University in 2015. Prior to joining Global Brigades, Erika worked as accounting assistant for a chemical factory. Erika was always interested in working with a company like Global Brigades, which helps people in need.
Claudia Corrales

Accountant

Claudia Corrales

Claudia came to the organization through a friend who shared an available opportunity with her, she joined Global Brigades on January 1, 2017 as an accountant for Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama. Her previous experience was always in the accounting, administrative and human resources areas. She has a degree in accounting and is currently studying a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration at Ceutec in Honduras, her main interests are to finish this degree and English studies which she started this year.
Diana Mejia

Accountant

Diana Mejia

Bio coming soon.
Josue Rios

Accountant

Josue Rios

Bio coming soon.
Karen Fonseca

Accountant

Karen Fonseca

Karen learned about Global Brigades through a friend and currently works as an accountant, managing the bookkeeping for Global Brigades Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama. She earned a Secretary degree at a young age and then in 2010, received her Bachelors Degree in Public Accounting and Finance. Karen has experience working with several companies, mostly in administration. In the future, she would like to obtain a Masters of Human Resources and complete her English studies.
Martin Alzua

Website Developer

Martin Alzua

Martin joined Global Brigades in 2013 as a QA engineer. He is responsible for ensuring the operation quality of the online volunteering platform. Before joining Global Brigades, he was involved in projects for Microsoft, Sabre, and other companies. Martin has received education in information technologies for both programming and quality assurance. Martin was born and raised in Argentina. In his free time, he likes to play music, sing and play futbol!
Azeema Fatima

Technical Support

Azeema Fatima

In love with all life everywhere, student of computer science and an eager learner, I always had a passion for helping others any way I could. Using my skill set of tech based work that I was learning and being absolutely mind-blowingly fascinated with the good work being done by people all over the world, I always wanted to join an organization which could provide me an opportunity to utilize my skills for the good. In stepped Global Brigades, big time! GB provided me with an opportunity of my dreams, working alongside the best teams in the world, doing absolutely wonderful soul-fulfilling work. Be it helping the volunteers with their tech based issues, or working alongside the GB family, I keep on growing and every single day proves to be an opportunity to learn something new something wonderful and also be able to feel awesome inside, all the while doing what I love doing and helping others in whatever way I can in this amazing organization determined to make this world a better place, one day at a time. This, for me, is the best feeling in the world!

Nicaragua Team

Dr. Martha Espinoza Torrez

Medical & Dental Program Manager

Dr. Martha Espinoza Torrez

Dr. Torrez started working for Global Brigades Nicaragua in January 2015, as a temporary dentist. After showcasing great performance on Brigades, she was later promoted to the Dental Lead, joining the permanent staff in April 2015. Dr. Torrez studied at UNAN-LEÓN University. She then worked for nine years in a private clinic, providing holistic treatments to patients. During this time, she also volunteered with the Nicaraguan Children Fund, an organization that provides dental consultations to children. It was in this position that Dr. Torrez discovered her love for community service. Dr. Torrez hopes to improve access to dental care in Nicaragua, while increasing the focus on preventative care.
Julio Granados

Public Health & Water Brigades Manager

Julio Granados

Prior to working for Global Brigades, Julio worked as a Production Supervisor at Cemex Industrial Concrete Plant, a Resident Engineer on Road Signing and repairing and maintenance of parks and a volunteer in Raleigh International Citizen Service Program and TECHO. As Global Brigades’ Public Health and Water Brigades Manager, Julio oversees the program budget, brigade development, report writing community communication, community leader identification, and brigade logistics. He also implements strategies for the water and public health programs. In his spare time, Julio enjoys basketball, attending rock concerts, cooking, traveling and literature. Julio received his Bachelors Degree in Bachelor in Civil Engineering at National Engineering University and his Post degree in Designing and Evaluation of Municipal and Industrial Water Projects at National Engineering University.
Fabio Blanco

Business Brigades Manager

Fabio Blanco

Mr. Fabio Blanco joined Global Brigades Nicaragua in August 2017. Prior to this, his studies earned him a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business at the National Autonomous University of Nicaragua (UNAN-LEON) in 2000, and a Master's degree in rural development from the Polytechnic University of Nicaragua (UPOLI). In the labor field, Fabio has accumulated a wealth of previous experience with non-profit organizations.  He has worked as a specialist in social and business development processes with young people and adults in the rural communities of the western, northern and central municipalities of Nicaragua.It has formed groups of self-saving and development of small and médium enterprises in chaining of markets in different productive áreas  (BID-World Vision Nicaragua Central American Project).  Through the project, The Future is Young, he served as an advisor for small businesses in the administration of loans to young people in the department of Chinandega, which Fabio executed in coordination with the mayor of Chinandega and funds of the European Union and Lay Movement for Latin America. Also, he was responsible for the organizing component of a sponsorship scholarship program and community training for adults, youth and adolescents financed through funds from the EUROPEAN UNION. Fabio is currently the Manager of Business and Microfinance for Global Brigades Nicaragua. Together with his team, he is forming community banks in departments such as Jinotega and León in an effort to develop small loans in order to assist community members in starting or strengthening their own businesses allowing them to generate greater income for the welfare of their families. Currently, Fabio resides in the city of Estelí, Nicaragua, and his interests include technology and travel.
Denis Gaitan

M&E Manager

Denis Gaitan

Denis Gaitán has a degree in Social Communication at Universidad Centroamericana (UCA) in Managua. He also has a Master's Degree in Social Policies and Rights for Children and Adolescents from the same university. Before joining the team of Global Brigades Nicaragua, Denis worked in non-governmental organizations coordinating various projects of social communication and promotion of the children and adolescents rights . From the age of 12 he was involved in youth groups focused on issues of citizen participation. He also was a Director of a local community radio station and worked a volunteer program, French-speaking from Québec, Canada with whom he promoted south-north exchanges.

Since May 2015, he has been part of the Global Brigades Nicaragua team where he has worked in different roles, including Public Relations, community organization, and accreditation. Currently, he is the Monitoring and Evaluation Manager.

In his free time Denis enjoys spending time with his son Javier. He loves photography and historical articles of Nicaragua and likes to spend time with friends and family.

Dr. Miuriel Castillo

CHW & Patient Referral Coordinator

Dr. Miuriel Castillo

Dr. Miuriel Castillo Obregón studied at UCASTE university in the city of Estelí. Graduating in 2014 with her degree of General Doctor and Surgeon, she began to work for a tobacco business as a general physician giving medical attention to laborers. In the same year, she began working at the Hospital of Estelí as a general pediatrician which she was responsible for emergency attentions, general consultations, and pediatric emergencies. Dr. Miuriel began to work in Global Brigades in May of 2015 as a temporary doctor. Completing multiple brigades from 2015 to 2018, she was motivated to help people, and after hard work, Dr. Miuriel was promoted to the program lead of Medical Initiatives, including CHW program, Patient Referral program, and providing better health access to communities without medical access  through community health workers.
Gabriela Cruz

Accountant

Gabriela Cruz

Prior to working for Global Brigades, Gabriela worked in the Projects department for UNAN. Gabriela currently works as the Accountant for Global Brigades Nicaragua. In her spare time, Gabriela enjoys traveling. Gabriela earned her Public Accounting and Finance degree from UNAN.
Jaqueline Lazo

Administration and Legal Advisor

Jaqueline Lazo

Prior to working for Global Brigades, Jaqueline provided Legal advice in the Labor field. As the HR Assistant for Global Brigades Nicaragua, Jaqueline assists in contract drafting, interviews, updating staff and collaborating with team members as necessary. In her spare time, Jaqueline enjoys studying and spending time with her family. Jaqueline is currently pursuing her Masters in Procedural Law with emphasis in oral, criminal, civil, labor, mercantile, family and due process. She is also authorized as a Lawyer and Notary Public.

Panama Team

Pablo Garron

Executive Director

Pablo Garron

Pablo Garron is a consultant/trainer/facilitator, team player and skilled in management of multicultural staff with over 20 years’ experience in international development. He has worked advising the Panamanian government in establishing the microfinance policy and design the regulations for the Microfinance Development Fund. He worked 12 years for The Peace Corps in Bolivia as master trainer and in Panama as a Program manager and as a Senior Programs Manager. He worked as a business development consultant for the UNDP, IDB. FUNDES, REDPAMIF among other organizations. In 2013, Pablo began working with Global Brigades Panama designing, implementing and monitoring the Microfinance program. In June of 2015, He became GB´s Panama Programs Officer and in January 2017, he was nominated as GB Nicaragua Executive Director. Pablo has a BA in Economics and and a Masters in Business Administration.
Dr. Jessica Núñez de Mirabal

Medical and Dental Program Director

Dr. Jessica Núñez de Mirabal

Jessica joined Global Brigades in October of 2014 as a brigade coordinator for the Medical Dental Program in Panama, also handled everything concerning the dental component of the program. At the end of 2015, she was promoted to the position of Manager of Medical Dental Program. She is currently in charge of planning, assess, monitoring, manage and run the Medical Dental Program developed by the organization in communities, Also, she maintains continuing cooperation with the government, private companies and foundations that contribute in improving the quality of health in communities where GB works. Jessica is from Colombia but living in Panama 14 years ago, she received her degree as Doctor in Dental Surgery (DDS) from the University of Panamá where she was an active participation in the medical mission of PROGIMU program, Special Olympics, Sonrisa de mujer Program and organization of the dental conference update of University of Panama 2012 and 2013 on the publicity and marketing committee. She has two certifications in project management and currently start taking international public health certification of the University of Texas. In the near future she plans to start a master in public health and epidemiology. Fun fact: In Colombia she studied architectural drawing and is one of her hobbies and her love for the vocation in health area began in her intern at the University Hospital of Valle del Cauca in his hometown when she worked in the maintenance department.
Jorge Pinto

Microfinance Manager

Jorge Pinto

Jorge grew up in Santiago de Veraguas, Panama, where he got his Commerce Degree at the Omar Torrijos Herrera Institute. He got his Masters from Universidad de Panamá. Jorge previously worked as a business advisor at two recognized financial institutions in Panama, until he saw the job ad for Global Brigades and decided to join the business program. Jorge enjoys interacting with everyone he meets during his field visits, as well as with his co-workers at the office. He also enjoys seeing the positive impact created in the lives of Community Bank members in each of the communities where Global Brigades works. Jorge has been amazed with the changing mindsets of Community Bank members. He remembers in the beginning while speaking with new members, many said they only earned enough to get by with food, but now they have succeeded in a collective savings of more than $50,000 and more than $65,000 in loans. In Jorge’s free time he enjoys time with his family, reading, and going for walks.
Gregorio Linares

Monitoring & Evaluation Technician

Gregorio Linares

Gregorio Linares was born in the comarca Guna Yala in the community of playón chico (Uggubseni), indigenous territory in Panama. As a child, Gregorio was raised by his parents and grandparents in Panama City as well as Santa Librada, a community in the Darién province. He attended seminary school at La Universidad Santa María La Antigua in Panama City for seven years. His classes also consisted of coursework in social psychology and social work. He then served as a priest in the city and in the comarca Guna Yala where he had to learn his native language of Guna. In 2008, he first encountered Global Brigades in the community of Koshkuna, Veracruz where he was serving as the community secretary. Global Brigades worked with local leadership to begin working on a community store as part of a business brigade and a kitchen for the Baptist church. Before becoming a member of the Global Brigades team, Gregorio worked in various capacities from construction, government surveys, The World Bank, and also as a local consultant for the government institution, MIDES. In 2011, Gregorio was invited to join Global Brigades as a guide and community liaison to ensure that Global Brigades was familiar with each community’s local leadership. Currently, Gregorio is in charge of connecting with each community with whom Global Brigades works to collect information to properly monitor and evaluate each program. Gregorio likes his current role as he can continue strengthening the relationship built on trust and dialogue between communities and Global Brigades so we can all work as a team. His favorite sports include chess, ping pong and volleyball. He also enjoys listening to instrumental music in his free time.
Yohana Jimenez

Microfinance Technician

Yohana Jimenez

Yohana Jimenez, is our new microfinance technician! She is the former community bank tresurer of the community of Canglon, (and member of the community) one of the fastest-growing cajas in Darien. Her eagerness to learn, dedication and passion to develop the communities through the power of financial inclusion was decisive in order to join the business team of GB Panama. Thanks to the business brigades and the trainings she learned how to manage the finances of her community bank and became one of the best treasurers across the 20 cajas in Panama.
Evidelia Martinez

Microfinance Technician

Evidelia Martinez

Evidelia grew up in the community of Rio Pavo in the Darién province. Before she was with Global Brigades, she worked as a promoter for Avon cosmetics to coordinate traveling salespeople. Evidelia first learned of Global Brigades when they came to work with the cooperative in Platanilla. She was an active member of the cooperative and worked with Global Brigades in some of their first projects. She remembers meeting another field technician and was put in touch with the business program team members for a position. One of Evidelia’s first well-known phrases with the business team was “Don’t worry. I will be on time. Even if it rains and the river rises, I’ll be there.” Evidelia enjoys going to work each day to see the growth and development in all the communities that have established their Community Banks and what the bank members have accomplished with their credit. In her free time, Evidelia enjoys visiting her family and writing.
Keyla Mendoza

Microfinance Field Technician

Keyla Mendoza

Keyla grew up in the community of Platanilla in the province of Panamá Este. There she attended primary school and went to the nearby town of Torti for high school. Also in Torti, is a satellite branch of the University of Panama where she received her degree in technical studies. Before Global Brigades, Keyla worked in the Informatics and Training Center in Torti. She was living in Platanilla when she was contracted to do a baseline survey for Global Brigades in 2014. She was trained how to conduct the household survey and then continued to visit other communities for Global Brigades to gather more information. Later she was officially offered the opportunity to join Global Brigades as a technician on the Monitoring and Evaluation team where she continues to work on projects to gather community insights through household surveys and personal interviews. Keyla enjoys meeting people from different communities. In her free time she is dedicated to her children and family.
Aiby Wendy Ardila

Accounting & Administration

Aiby Wendy Ardila

Wendy joined Global Brigades in the summer of 2012 originally as a part-time employee, but soon she began working full time for the Accounting team in Panama. She was drawn to the multicultural environment and the diversity of people that supported one another in the organization. Being able to support the mission the organization has with both indigenous communities in Panama and with volunteers that come from other countries has been highly energizing for Wendy. Although, her work is mostly focused on the administrative side of the organization she has had various opportunities to visit communities. She remembers one time when she was in the community of Metetí for an informal celebration with community members. She was nervous to try an unfamiliar beverage and then learned it was tamarindo or known in English as tamarind. She was very touched at the hospitality and generosity of communities that are said to have so little in resources, but are always delighted to share with visitors. Wendy was born and grew up in Columbia and has been in Panama for the last 10 years. She is currently in her fourth and final year at the University of Panama to earn a degree in Applied Informatics. Each day in Global Brigades brings with it new experiences and Wendy looks forward to what lies ahead.
Manuel Quintero

Driver

Manuel Quintero

Bio coming soon.
Mike Suarez

Ghana/Panama Program Associate Manager

Mike Suarez

Mike joined the Global Brigades team in November 2018. Having pursued a career in Telecommunications at a younger age, he started collaborating with non-profit work in 2012, coordinating volunteer programs in Panama and El Salvador, actively participating as volunteer programs trainer, champion and manager. Mike also lived almost two years in the United States, collaborating as a data analyst and customer service coordinator in Madison, Wisconsin for a second-tier microfinance institution, creating impact in Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Ecuador and Peru. Mike has experience engaging multicultural teams and programs. He fell in love with Global Brigades' Holistic Model, considering it is the path to creating a more equal society.
Imaira Chiari

Compound Supervisor

Imaira Chiari

Bio coming soon.

Canada Board of Directors

Mario Jones

Chairperson of the Board

Mario Jones

Mario has been a proud brigader since 2011 when he was inspired by the promise of connecting with one of his home communities in Central America as a brigade member and interpreter. The following year, Mario joined the campus leadership team as Travel Coordinator for the six Global Brigades Chapters at Mount Allison University in southeast New Brunswick, Canada. From 2014-2018 he held the role of Director of Finance for the GB Canada Board. In 2017, having been involved in brigade leadership, student leadership conference and gala planning, and non-profit financial management, Mario worked with the Board Members toward achieving charitable registration for Global Brigades in Canada. In 2018, Mario was elected Chairperson of the Board for GB Canada where he oversees the operations of the charity and collaborates with International Team partners to represent the brigade volunteers of Canada and their donors. Mario holds a Bachelor of Science degree (biochemistry) from Mount Allison University and a Certificate in Business Administration from the University of New Brunswick. He resides in Saint John where he is employed at the Saint John Regional Hospital. Locally, he has been involved with research projects in neonatal medicine, emergency medicine, and refugee health in collaboration with the local refugee settlement agency.
Erika Maxwell

Acting Chair

Erika Maxwell

Erika became involved with Global Brigades in 2012 at Mount Allison University. Throughout her time at Mount Allison, Erika participated in a Medical/Dental Brigade and a Public Health Brigade in Honduras. She also participated in a Global Health and Sustainability Institute in Nicaragua in 2015. Through her experiences with Global Brigades, she has come to believe in the organization’s mission and vision, specifically that equality of life can be improved through a holistic, collaborative, and sustainable approach to development work. In 2016, Erika joined the Board of Directors for Global Brigades Canada. She now serves as the board’s Vice-Chairperson. Erika holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Mount Allison University and a Master of Science in Community Health from Memorial University of Newfoundland. She is currently pursuing a Master of Public Administration at Queen’s University.
Aaron Larnder

Treasurer

Aaron Larnder

Aaron has been involved with Global Brigades since 2016/2017 when he participated in his first medical brigade in February 2017. Since then, he has taken on executive leadership roles including Donations Chair, Medical Chapter President, and the Business Chapter Founder at UVic. In February 2019, he will be attending his 4th brigade where he has been fortunate to participate in Medical/Dental, Business and Microfinance, Public Health, and Water during his involvement with the organization. Aaron has also visited 3 of the 4 partner countries -Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama - that GB works alongside. He is passionate about the Holistic Model and its implementation to fulfill the E100 goals and improving equality of life on a global scale. Aaron holds a BSc in Biology from the University of Victoria and wishes to pursue a career in Medicine.
Maura Riordon

Board Member

Maura Riordon

Maura was first introduced to Global Brigades while studying at Mount Allison University (MTA). She volunteered on MTA’s first Medical Brigade to Honduras in February 2009 and continued to brigade with MTA as a volunteer interpreter until she started working for the organization in September 2015. She worked as a Global Health Program Associate in Panama and as a Medical-Dental Team Champion Program Associate in Honduras which included helping with the Vision Screening Station. In June 2017, Maura transitioned into a new role as Medications Coordinator and worked on procuring medications and supplies for the programming countries. After working for Global Brigades in Central America for three and a half years, Maura moved back to Canada in March 2019 and now works for Infrastructure Canada in Ottawa and holds a position on the Global Brigades Canada Board of Directors. Maura received her B.A. with a double major in French Studies and Hispanic Studies from MTA in May 2010, her Honours B.A. with a specialization in French-Spanish-English translation from the University of Ottawa in June 2013, and her General Interpreting Graduate Diploma from York University in October 2015. Prior to working with Global Brigades, Maura worked for the Embassy of Peru in Ottawa, Ontario, and at the Language Technologies Research Centre in Gatineau, Quebec, where she translated, revised, and edited numerous documents, helped to organize events, and created website content. In her free time, Maura enjoys baking, salsa dancing, and spending time with friends and family.
Nicole Jollimore

Board Member

Nicole Jollimore

Nicole Jollimore is the Volunteer Engagement Manager for Global Brigades. In this role, Nicole is passionate about raising awareness about ethical volunteering and the social determinants of health, inspiring global citizens, and growing the Global Brigades movement. Intrigued by Global Brigades’ holistic approach and focus on empowerment in sustainable development, Nicole participated in her first brigade in 2011 and quickly realized a passion for global health. Following three more Public Health brigades to Honduras and increasing leadership involvement Nicole officially joined the Global Brigades team as a Chapter Advisor in Nicaragua in 2015. Her positive experiences and increasing interest in on the ground programming led to her transition into the role of Program Associate in Honduras in 2016. Having spent two years abroad in Central America, Nicole moved back home in 2017 to Nova Scotia, Canada where she was excited by the opportunity to work more closely with volunteers as a Senior Volunteer Engagement Associate, and most recently as the Volunteer Engagement Manager. Nicole graduated from Mount Allison University as a varsity athlete with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology, and a minor in Biology. In addition to her international work with Global Brigades, Nicole also enjoys engaging in her community as a special needs soccer coach and a volunteer in the emergency department at the IWK children's hospital.
Pragya Mishra

Board Member

Pragya Mishra

Pragya first joined Global Brigades during her first year at McMaster University in 2014. Since then, she has participated in three Medical Brigades and helped establish the Engineering, Public Health, and Business Chapters on campus. Pragya served as President of the Medical Chapter and Campus Chairperson for the McMaster GB Chapters. During her undergraduate career, she learned her passion for reducing global health inequities, education, and sustainable development through a community-based and collaborative approach. During this time, she became most interested in training volunteers pre-brigade in order to cultivate culturally competent and informed leaders. She also serves as the Co-Chair of the National Education Committee (NEC), working with volunteers across Canada to evaluate and improve GB education material. Pragya joined the Board of Directors in 2019 and now serves as Director-at-Large and Education Co-Lead. Pragya holds an Honours BSc. in Life Sciences and is concurrently in the Master of Public Health (MPH) program at McMaster and the Water Without Borders graduate program at United Nations University. Through graduate studies and ongoing involvement with GB, she hopes to continue integrating her education with practical work in the field of global health by working with and empowering underserved communities globally.
Jimy Beltran

Board Member

Jimy Beltran

Jimy became involved in Global Brigades in 2016 at St. Thomas University where he founded the first Global Brigades club in the university and launched the first Human Rights Brigade in Canada. He continued supporting the organization as a Chairperson of his university chapter and is now joining the Canadian Board of Directors as a Director-at-Large. Jimy holds a BA in Economics and History from St. Thomas University. He is currently working full-time at a Ag-Tech start-up called SomaDetect and runs his own non-profit called Venezuela180.
Danielle de Silva

Board Member

Danielle de Silva

Danielle became involved with Global Brigades in 2015 at the University of Toronto. She traveled with her Chapter to Honduras in 2015 and 2016 on two hybrid Medical Brigades. These experiences allowed her to understand how socio-economic factors can affect health outcomes, as well as allowed her to gain an appreciation of Global Brigades’s Holistic Model. In 2016, Danielle joined the University of Toronto Global Brigades Executive Team as Outreach Director and served in this role for two years. As Outreach Director, Danielle acted as an ambassador for Global Brigades on-campus and brought awareness to its values and objectives, especially to those unfamiliar with the field of sustainable development. This led her to greater understand the intricacies of the Holistic Model and how it relates to the field of sustainable development as a whole. Danielle was also involved in hosting two Central Canada Student Leadership Conferences in 2016 and 2017, which encouraged volunteers to think constructively and critically about the field of development, as well as focused on developing their leadership skills. Danielle’s undergraduate experiences with Global Brigades inspired her to grow within the organization, as she truly values its dedication to using interdisciplinary, capacity-building tactics to improve outcomes for under-resourced communities. This passion has led her to join the Global Brigades Canada Board of Directors as a Director-at-Large. Danielle holds an Honours Bachelor of Science in Global Health, as well as Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Toronto. She is currently studying at York University as a Master of Environmental Studies candidate.

Germany Board of Directors

Christine Bock

President

Christine Bock

Christine is the head of Global Brigades Germany and oversees all activities of GBG e.V As the German representative on the Advisory Board, Christine is the link between the international GB entities and the national level. president.gbgermany@globalbrigades.org
Constanze Bauer

Vice President

Constanze Bauer

Constance oversees together with the president all activities of the GBG e.V. Board. In contrast to the international focus of the president, the VP is more in charge of the national level and the university groups. vicepresident.gbgermany@globalbrigades.org
Leonard Steinhübel

Finance Manager

Leonard Steinhübel

Leo oversees GBG e.V.s finances. He is the direct contact person in anything related to finances for the GB USA as well as for the university groups. Furthermore he takes care of legal matters, next to the third management board member. finance.gbgermany@globalbrigades.org
Marie Bauer

Communication Manager

Marie Bauer

Marie is the communication responsible. Among others, she is in charge of implementing GB’s corporate identity on a national level, creating German marketing materials as well as sending out the GBG e.V. newsletter. communication.gbgermany@globalbrigades.org
Josephine Pattberg

Campus Chairperson Representative

Josephine Pattberg

Josephine got appointed by the German Campus Chairpersons to represent them in the GBG e.V. Board. Hence, Josephine is the link between the German board and the university clubs. hsg.gbgermany@globalbrigades.org
Benjamin Straub

Education

Benjamin Straub

Benjamin is the education responsible. Among others, he helps to implement the pre-brigade curricula and aids organizing workshops on campus. Furthermore, he is in charge of creating German information material. education.gbgermany@globalbrigades.org

UK Board of Directors

Aiden Patterson

Chaiperson Trustee

Aiden Patterson

Aiden is currently Chairperson and Trustee for Global Brigades UK. He works in M&A investment banking at Nomura covering the Leisure, and Food & Beverage sector, having been in the London and Hong Kong offices. He has previously worked at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, researching child healthcare interventions in Colombia. He attended University College London, where he earned a BSc and MSc in Economics. Aiden first became involved with Global Brigades in 2011 with his first Microfinance brigade in Ghana. He went on to lead a brigade the following year, and was President and a founder of the Chapter at University College London.

Aiden believes that Global Brigades can be a powerful tool to improve lives in those communities it reaches, and by developing, implementing, and tracking the effects of these interventions, bit by bit, communities can be lifted out of poverty. He also believes that the benefits are reciprocal, with volunteers developing their maturity and leadership, as well as their understanding of global economic and social conditions. Aiden has previously served as Treasurer of Global Brigades UK from June 2018 to October 2019.

Dr. Michelle D'Souza

Non-Executive Director and Trustee

Dr. Michelle D'Souza

Michelle is a junior doctor who works in North West London. She studied medicine  at the University of Edinburgh and completed her intercalated BSc at Imperial College London.Michelle’s involvement with Global Brigades began in 2015 when she started the first chapter in Scotland. Whilst leading the medical brigade she secured several grants totaling over £2000. With continued work at Edinburgh securing money as the society fundraising coordinator and participation in the human rights brigade, Michelle has found fundraising to be a challenge for many volunteers. As director of strategic partnerships, Michelle hopes to bring in sponsorship that may reduce fundraising for volunteers and allow all money raised to go directly to brigade programes.
Stewart Sherman-Kahn

Non-Executive Director and Trustee

Stewart Sherman-Kahn

Born in Leicester, Stewart's formative years were spent in Worcestershire. After leaving Bromsgrove School with A levels, Stewart started his training as a Chartered Surveying at the College of Estate Management at Reading University. While working at the Birmingham Valuation Office. he was elected a Member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in 1996. From 1993 until 1998 he was involved and eventually ran Radio Lollipop at the Birmingham Children´s Hospital with a fundraising and broadcasting brief. In June 1999 Stewart established Chamberlains Chartered Surveyors. A small but perfectly formed Surveying Practice based in Birmingham, they have a varied case load and deal in both residential and commercial property matters. In additiona to his professional experiences as a surveyor, Stewart is Council Chairperson of Lions Clubs International MD105 (British Isles), Chairperson of the Board of Governors at The Calthorpe Academy (Special School) in Highgate, Birmingham and also serves as a Board member of Openland an LGBT property group in the Midlands. Stewart have been aware of Global Brigades for many years and hopes to support in the expansion if our excellent work, fostering a  formal co-operation between GB and Lions Clubs International.
Federico Amorosi

Non-Executive Director & Trustee

Federico Amorosi

Fed is currently Director of Finance for GB UK, working towards demonstrating leading financial transparency, while empowering GB UK to make informed decisions and behave proactively for the success and sustainability of Brigades' efforts. Fed's involvement with Global Brigades started in 2011, and he is a founder of chapters at both University College London and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. During this time he came to realise that the value of the brigades is not limited to the fantastic collaboration that occurs during brigades, but grows with every volunteer that returns home. This led him to join the board in 2013 as Director of Expansion during GB UK's first foray into centrally led growth efforts. Fed earned his Master’s in Engineering from University College London (UCL) and is based in London where he works as a management consultant with Arcadis, the leading global design & consultancy firm for natural and built assets. In this role he focusses on improving the quality of life through organisational design, operational efficiency, and change leadership in asset intensive organisations.

USA Board of Directors

Jeff Hay

Board Chairman

Jeff Hay

Jeff has over 18 years of experience working in the healthcare industry, combining his love of sports and medicine into the athletic training profession. Throughout his career as an athletic trainer, Jeff has had the opportunity to work with many sports including professional soccer, rugby, high school sports, endurance events, and even a local rodeo. He also spent four years as an assistant athletic trainer with the Chicago Bears and currently works as a regional manager for Athletico Physical Therapy where he is responsible for the operational management and support of eight Athletico physical therapy facilities. Jeff is actively involved with Athletico’s Leadership Development, Charitable Giving, and Eco-Friendly committees. In addition, Jeff, his wife, Pam, and their three children all participate in many local charitable giving initiatives in the Chicagoland area. Jeff enjoys working directly with people to improve their health and well-being. He resides in Glenview and hold a B.A. in Biology from Illinois Wesleyan University and a M.S. in Athletic Training from Illinois State University.
Catherine Berman

Co-Founder & Board Member

Catherine Berman

Over the past decade Catherine Berman has co-founded several successful mission-driven ventures, including Deloitte Center for Leadership & Community, the Information Technology Consortium and most recently, Global Brigades – the world’s largest student development organization.  In the past, Catherine maintained a host of management positions, including Chief Executive Officer, GB Panama, Strategy and Operations Manager at Deloitte Consulting, LLP, Director of Marketing at Redefining Progress and Vice President of Evins Communications, LLC. Her international work experience spans from India to Israel with extensive work in Central and South America. Catherine graduated magna cum laude from Boston University and received her MBA from Oxford University, England, where she founded the Oxford Women in Business Network.
Alex Dang

Board Treasurer

Alex Dang

Bio coming soon.
Andrew Bird

Board Member

Andrew Bird

Andrew Bird is a Senior Manager at Deloitte & Touche. In his spare time he advises nonprofits on growing their revenues through the application of leading edge business marketing practices. Andrew has over 30 years of experience in complex project management, marketing strategy, leading diverse teams, and developing future leaders. He is the co-author of the bestseller “Putting the Profit in Nonprofit! 5 Power Fundraising Strategies for Nonprofits.” He currently serves on the Board of Global Brigades USA. He earned his BS in Business Administration from New York University, an MBA from Loyola University, and an MA in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica.
Dr. Angelo Passalacqua

Board Member

Dr. Angelo Passalacqua

At Global Brigades, Angelo has been co-founder, Treasurer and President of Global Brigades in the UK.  While President, he oversaw the growth of the UK organization from 3 to 23 volunteers and donations of over £380,000.  At the association level, Angelo was integral in devising the methodology and conducting the analysis for assessing country risk in Africa, ultimately leading Global Brigades to expand to Ghana. He has also contributed to the association’s SWOT analysis. Angelo is currently the General Manager of a translation agency in Chicago, USA.  Previously, he was a management consultant for the healthcare industry, helping Pharma price and valuate potential medication, and held a teaching positions at King’s College London and the North China Institute of Science & Technology.  He is a certified ISO 9001:2004 Lead Auditor, Associate at the Higher Education Academy and holds a PhD in Biostatistics and BSc in Management.  Angelo speaks English and Spanish fluently and maintains conversational fluency in Mandarin and French.
Dr. Toby Peters

Board Member

Dr. Toby Peters

Dr. Toby Peters has been involved with the mission of Global Brigades since its inception at Marquette University. He served as an advisor to the group of students that journeyed to Honduras for the first medical brigades. He has traveled to Honduras and Nicaragua on numerous occasions participating in medical, public health, and water brigades. Additionally, he has assisted his wife, Dr. Mary Kay Ellis, an ophthalmologist, staff vision stations with the medical brigades in Honduras for the last two years. During his career in higher education at Marquette and Syracuse Universities he served the students and institution in the areas of administrative and student services, student affairs, academic affairs, and auxiliary services. Toby’s leadership background in administrative, consulting, and faculty roles provide him a unique blend of experiences that he enjoys bringing to and sharing in a learning environment. He received a Doctorate in Educational Policy and Leadership from Marquette University and a MBA and a BS degree from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale. As a faculty member at Marquette University he designed and taught Organizational Behavior courses featuring a blended learning management system. He focused on many of the areas of organizational behavior and development including; challenges for managers, motivation at work, learning and performance management, stress and well-being, communication, work teams and groups, leadership and followership, conflict and negotiations, organizational culture, and managing change. Toby served as the Associate Senior Vice President at Marquette University. Under his auspices, he had the responsibility of leading hundreds of employees ranging from entry level to senior executives. He managed high level projects including serving as liaison with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation during the six-year reconstruction of the Marquette Interchange that bordered on three sides of the university. He also served as the co-chair during the university’s assessment of institutional effectiveness that led to a successful reaffirmation of accreditation. Through these experiences, Toby managed conflict, communications, negotiations, and strategic planning, all while promoting a strong and cohesive team. Toby also has expertise in emergency management planning having led response teams and managed the planning and execution of the exercises. He was also charged with identifying means to maximize resources to provide better service through efficiency, productivity, and quality improvements. He implemented process improvement assessments through Value Stream Mapping and Lean Management principles. He has consulted on a variety of topics including: assessment, strategic planning, construction, organization structure and review. In addition, he has presented and published on topics including transformational and servant leadership, retention, development, assessment, volunteerism, cultural competence, construction, renovation, unrelated business income taxes (UBIT), unfair competition, and Ignatian pedagogy and spirituality. In 2014 he earned the honor of Loaned Executive of the Year for United Way of Greater Milwaukee for his assistance and service with the annual community fundraising campaign. In Milwaukee, he is a board member for InTandem, a local theater production organization. He was a board member with Variety Children’s Charity of Wisconsin and a regular volunteer at the United Community Center serving the Latino population of Milwaukee. Toby is now a faculty member at the Federal Executive Institute within the Center for Leadership Development for the federal government.
Through virtual or in-country programs, Squads are passionate groups of volunteers who mobilize abroad to create positive change. Each Squad type has a skill-based focus area that support the education, health and economic development objectives of community partners.
Squads are passionate groups of volunteers who mobilize abroad to create positive change. Each Squad type has a skill-based focus area that support the education, health and economic development objectives of community partners. Faculty choose their dates, duration (typically 1-2 weeks), and their site location from one of our six program countries.
Squads Abroad is a 501c3 non-profit organization under our parent company Global Brigades, a Platinum Level Guidestar member for Financial Transparency. Since 2004, our organization has collectively mobilized more than 70,000 international volunteers to help resolve global health and economic disparities around the world.