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By Alphabetical
By Team

Annah Amani

Programs Officer, Africa

Annah serves as a key link between the San Diego office and programs in Ethiopia, Tanzania, Burundi, and DR Congo. She is responsible for ensuring excellent communication in both directions in order for priorities to be clear and to maintain genuine partnerships that flourish. Relationally, Annah works with and alongside the Africa Programs Director and local teams in a spirit of interdependent partnership while ensuring performance and accountability. She is most passionate about being part of a movement that transforms our participants lives, communities, nations and contributes to the global greater good of restoring creation.

Through her M.P.H. studies at University of California, Los Angeles, she served as the team manager in the development of programs to prevent maternal mortality in rural Kenya. After her M.P.H, she went on to serve as the regional program coordinator for Christian Foundation for Children and Aging (now Unbound Uganda). Dr. Amani’s research sought to represent the voice of rural women in Uganda on the vital matter of birthplace choice. After completion of her Ph.D, Annah taught global health and other public health courses as an adjunct lecturer for the Department of Public Health Sciences at Clemson University in South Carolina. In her early childhood, Annah was a child refugee from Uganda to Los Angeles. As a child refugee, Annah was aided by many people and non-governmental organizations such as Amnesty International. The refugee experience sparked an interest in doing work that “aided” others in the global community. She is committed to doing progressive work in the fields of health, education, social justice and community development.

Annah Amani
Programs Officer, Africa

Durbel Lora Brito

Country Director, Dominican Republic
Durbel Lora Brito
Country Director, Dominican Republic

Ari Burcombe

Development Assistant

Ari works closely with our development team to analyze data and inform future strategic fundraising decisions. She takes on tasks involving donation management, fundraising data analytics, and connecting donors with our team. Ari is a creative and action-oriented team member who is excited about research, consulting, and the development of our donor partnerships. 

Ari graduated from California State University San Marcos with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and a focus in Marketing. While not at work, Ari enjoys rock climbing, hiking, and camping with her husband and loved ones.

Ari Burcombe
Development Assistant

Punyanuch Butrat

Office Manager, Thailand

As our Office Manager, Punyanuch thrives within an environment of honesty, and passion for working to honor God. She is very proud of her work and using our holistic approach to develop the work of God by bringing her fellow human beings together. 

Punyanuch is the Vice President of Ban Huai Mae Na Wang Church in Thailand. She earned her Bachelor's Degree in Faculty/Business Administration and Marketing from Maejo University, Chiang Mai. 

Punyanuch Butrat
Office Manager, Thailand

Sophia Casmano

Talent & Internship Coordinator

As Talent & Internship Coordinator, Sophia's role is relationship focused and works to promote a human centered workplace for her teammates, interns, and the organization. On the People & Culture team she facilitates organizational change by creating systems and spaces for her teammates to re-imagine and co-create a relevant culture of learning, diversity and inclusion, coaching, and holistic wellbeing through safe space dialogue, and brainstorming.

After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Nutrition at Point Loma Nazarene University, Sophia’s interest in food systems around the world sparked a need to learn more about our approach. Her welcoming nature and loving spirit has carried her into many accomplishments throughout her time with us. Sophie enjoys learning Spanish, exploring Latin America, bird watching, and learning more about agroforestry and rural food systems.

Sophia Casmano
Talent & Internship Coordinator

Luis Alberto Castellanos

Executive Director, Mexico

As the Executive Director of our team in Mexico, Luis works to facilitate transformative development processes within the rural community. Luis has served Southeast Mexico for more than 20 years, and continues his passion through promoting a team committed to the mission and vision of the organization.

Luis earned his degree in Business Administration, and has a certification in Professionalization of Organized Civil Society by the National Institute of Social Development (Mexico). Previously, Luis has been a facilitator of community development for missionary training at the training center of the Assemblies of God (Camad). He enjoys reading books, drinking coffee and doesn’t miss an opportunity to crack a joke with his friends and colleagues.

Luis Alberto Castellanos
Executive Director, Mexico

Corey Chin

Monitoring & Evaluation Manager

Corey works with our local program teams to monitor progress and measure results. His team uses these data to understand our program's impact and when applicable, make "course corrections" as we strive for continuous improvement. He is passionate about balancing the application of scientific rigor while upholding the value of relationships throughout the entire monitoring and evaluation process. 

In collaboration with colleagues from around the globe, Corey has co authored articles published in peer-reviewed journals covering aspects of our program such as resilience, peace & reconciliation, and remote sensing. Corey has a Bachelors of Science in Environmental Studies with a minor in Geography, and he is trained in project management, data equity, geographic information systems, plant identification, and wildlife tracking. 

Corey Chin
Monitoring & Evaluation Manager

Ellen Davis

Development Operations Coordinator

As Development Operations Coordinator, Ellen helps create and manage systems and policies for the Development Team. She loves keeping information current and organized, knowing that it supports our program and empowers farming families around the world. 

Previously, Ellen worked as a Grant Writer at Voices for Children, with AmeriCorps at Habitat for Humanity East Bay, and administered impact evaluation surveys in Guatemala to benefit Heifer International. She has a Bachelor's Degree in International Relations from UC Davis and a Master's Degree in International Development and Nonprofit Management from UC San Diego. Ellen is excited to play a part in an organization that cares deeply for people and the environment. When Ellen is not working, she enjoys spending time with her husband Matt and two young children - Samuel and Lily.

Ellen Davis
Development Operations Coordinator

Macy Day

Marketing Associate

Starting as an intern during the fall semester of 2021, Macy has recently joined the marketing team as our Marketing Associate. Working from social media strategy and content, to assisting with event coordination, Macy provides assistance to the marketing department in the necessary areas. She is passionate about displaying our mission in an ethical, truthful, and authentic way, while connecting with our current and potential supporters via social media. 

Macy resides in Nashville, Tennessee and has previous experience in videography, photography, and assistant positions. She is passionate about traveling, connecting with people from all different walks of life, and discovering the relationship of humanity within our differences. When Macy is not working, she is discovering new forms of artistic expression including collaging, pottery, and painting. She is very excited to be working toward earning her scuba diving certification in hopes of exploring the underwater world.

Macy Day
Marketing Associate

Birori Gaparani Dieudonne

Program Manager, D.R. Congo

As the program manager of the D.R. Congo program, Birori works collaboratively with the senior management team to manage and plan for the future of our program. Birori is passionate about serving the rural communities who are voiceless. He is proud to see participants ready to improve and change their financial situation. 

One of Birori’s many accomplishments includes being the first to gather with the team in launching the D.R. Congo program. He’s been a key player in our growth from 1 watershed to 7 watersheds within a short period of time. He has seen testimonies of how communities have broken the cycle of poverty within only two years of work. Birori has a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology. Birori has the determination to bring peaceful cohabitation among the population. He loves traditional food from his country and is also a huge Manchester United football fan.

Birori Gaparani Dieudonne
Program Manager, D.R. Congo

Eugenio Marte Doñe

Operations Assistant, Dominican Republic
Eugenio Marte Doñe
Operations Assistant, Dominican Republic

Valerie Foulkes

Strategic Initiatives Manager

As Strategic Initiatives Manager, Valerie is pursuing new tree-planting partnerships and exploring the carbon market. As more corporations seek to become net-zero, Valerie is creating opportunities for them to equip our partnering farmers, as they plant trees and restore their watersheds, in an exciting new revenue stream. This will help us grow significantly to achieve our THRIVE 25 goals. 

Valerie began her journey on our team as the first Regional Representative in Houston, Texas in 2016. Valerie spent 5 years joyfully building a local community of partnerships with many new families, churches and foundations to support the global work of Plant With Purpose. Previously, Valerie was an Advocacy Advisor with Save the Children International in New York where she successfully influenced various UN resolutions related to maternal, newborn/child health as well as child migrant rights. Valerie's husband is from Australia and together they are parents to triplet toddler boys. After 10 years living in the U.S. (New York and Houston), she's excited to be back in her hometown, Toronto, Canada.

Valerie Foulkes
Strategic Initiatives Manager

Erika Galicia

Economic Development & Information Director, Dominican Republic
Erika Galicia
Economic Development & Information Director, Dominican Republic

Arbeis González Gómez

Mexico
Arbeis González Gómez
Mexico

Emile Icoyavuze

Deputy Country Director, Burundi

As Deputy Country Director, Emile’s role is to ensure the implementation of the program through our three components: Environmental Restoration, Economic Empowerment and Spiritual Renewal. These three components work with the grassroots groups of the watersheds to reduce poverty in rural areas through an integrated program that contributes to holistic transformation of the community. What excites Emile most is to see how the programs utilize these tools to achieve a transformation of human lives.

Before stepping into his role as Deputy Country Director, he was our Economic Empowerment Coordinator. He believes that with our integrated program, the Spiritual Renewal aspect has greatly impacted the behavior of our participants so much so that we have not recorded any cases of theft or misunderstanding. In addition, he is very proud of the progress from income generating activities in the sub-watershed of Mutsindozi, where we are able to see how incomes have increased after only 2 years. Emile has a Master's Degree in Community Based Development, and loves to sing, play the guitar and worship God while doing so.

Emile Icoyavuze
Deputy Country Director, Burundi

Donna Johnson-Lebert

Executive Assistant & Talent Coordinator

In her role as Executive Assistant, Donna has the privilege of supporting all of the CEO administrative functions and providing board support. As the Talent Coordinator, she contributes to growing a diverse team of gifted and passionate individuals who bring their talents to fulfill our mission. Donna is most passionate about having a part in creating a team of such dedicated individuals and supporting the committed group of people who serve on the Plant With Purpose Board. 

Donna earned her Bachelor of Science in Environmental Policy Analysis and Planning at University of California, Davis. As an outdoor enthusiast, she loves the beach and water sports  - kayaking and paddle boarding among her favorites. She is also an avid hiker with trekking highlights including the West Highland Way, Scotland; the Routeburn Track, New Zealand; and the Machu Picchu trail in Peru.

Donna Johnson-Lebert
Executive Assistant & Talent Coordinator

Kristen Kreitzer

V.P. of Finance & Administration

As V.P. of Finance and Administration, Kristen takes on a number of tasks involving overseeing financial and human resource efforts, and coordinating strategic development planning. Kristen is heavily involved in linking Plant With Purpose’s transformative work in the field to our U.S. headquarters.  Drawing on her background in Organization Development and applied behavior science, she believes in designing learning and development practices that begin with the self as key to understanding each person's unique role in team dynamics. Kristen believes that as followers of Christ, we are called to create relationship-based community-oriented workplaces that are filled with love and care. By focusing on holistic well-being, accepting all facets of diversity, and loving and caring for all of humanity, she strives to develop people  that lead from the head and the heart.

Among Kristen’s many accomplishments has been her direct involvement in building our finance, human resources, and information technology teams from the ground up. Kristen has been a driving force behind our efforts thus far, but she is most excited about the future of Plant With Purpose. She believes we could all use a little more love and kindness in our lives, and that there is no limit to the amount of love we can extend to others. Kristen is currently working on fulfilling her life-long dream of learning Mandarin!

Kristen Kreitzer
V.P. of Finance & Administration

Prachaya Kwanmaneekan

Watershed Manager, Thailand

Prachaya shows immense care and generosity for those around him in his role as Watershed Manager. His main responsibility involves caring for the watershed team, and making sure activities are carried out in the correct way. 

Prachaya is proud of his accomplishments in fostering the potential of community leaders to present community development plans to their local government. He has a Bachelor’s of Theology and Public Administration, and is excited about using his skills to further our mission within his watershed.

Prachaya Kwanmaneekan
Watershed Manager, Thailand

Josh Kyallo

V.P. of International Programs

Josh Kyallo joined our team as Vice President of International Programs in 2021. With over 28 years of leadership experience in international program development and humanitarian response, Josh possesses a deep understanding of the multidimensional nature of poverty and commitment to the nuance required to create a world free from it. Josh is a servant leader at heart with a wide and far reach, extending his coaching, communication, and experience in management and leadership across cultural, language, and physical boundaries. His fluency in English and Swahili are a huge asset in developing and maintaining relationships with international programs and partners

Born in Kenya, Josh has lived and worked in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, Somalia, and the U.S. and has designed and led programs impacting 55+ countries around the world. In 2020, Josh launched Community Rising Africa Network (CRANE) to encourage and promote self-reliance by connecting African innovators with resources and partnerships. He served as founder and managing director by creating sustainable solutions for health, education, poverty alleviation, and development challenges affecting millions of vulnerable populations in Sub-Saharan Africa. Currently, Josh lives in San Diego, CA where he enjoys spending time with family and serving in the community. He is a fitness freak who has played competitive soccer and run charity marathons around the globe. He also enjoys hitting the gym regularly,  has been involved in stage theater acting and directing, and is passionate about literature and creative arts.

Josh Kyallo
V.P. of International Programs

Philippe Lazaro

Communications Manager / Storyteller

Philippe shares the stories of people living at the forefront of the climate crisis, who are working to transform their ecosystems and communities. He loves emphasizing the human experience, and keeping conversations about the environment centered on the communities most affected by it. Philippe has led storytelling trips to Mexico, Thailand, Colombia, Tanzania, South Africa, Haiti, and a number of other countries. He has previously served in similar roles at Liberty in North Korea and Mobility International.

Philippe obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Communications, as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Global Studies at UC Santa Barbara. He furthered his studies by earning a Master of Arts in International Studies as well as a Master of Arts in Nonprofit Management at University of Oregon. Philippe is also an illustrator, podcaster, and digital artist. Outside of work, Philippe loves spending time with his wife and their three kids (under three!).

Philippe Lazaro
Communications Manager / Storyteller

McKinley Lewandowski

Regional Representative Associate, Denver

McKinley works in the Denver area as our Regional Representative Associate. She spends her time offering support to the Development Team in every capacity. She is excited to participate in our mission by helping others to see the value in our work and the joy of supporting through giving. 

McKinley earned her Undergraduate Degree in International Development with focuses in Sociology, African and Environmental Studies from Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She also completed her Masters Degree in Philanthropic Studies from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University in Indianapolis. When McKinley isn’t working, you can find her listening to true crime, or cheering on the Indianapolis Colts!

McKinley Lewandowski
Regional Representative Associate, Denver

Eduardo López Cortés

Project Coordinator, Mexico

Eduardo serves as our Project Coordinator for Mexico. His role involves providing technical support to farmers, by helping to develop knowledge and skills to produce healthy, native plants within the watershed. By coordinating these projects, Eduardo is encouraging his community to improve their living conditions and environment by reforesting degraded land.

Eduardo is an Agricultural Engineer, and has over 35 years of experience in government programs in the environmental and natural resources sector. One of his many accomplishments includes his participation in the state plan to control forest pests and diseases (specifically dendroctonus frontalis) in the Mixteca region of the state of Oaxaca. Eduardo also taught as a professor at the Oaxaca State Forestry Technical school.

Eduardo López Cortés
Project Coordinator, Mexico

Dave Luebkeman

Operations Specialist, Innovation Lab

Working in the Innovation Lab as our Operations Specialist, Dave seeks out data which tells the Plant With Purpose story, sheds light on program areas needing attention, and explores new geographic areas for future expansion. Dave is a data dog and loves hunting for information knowing the work he does helps his colleagues do their job better. 

Dave started his career as a Certified Public Accountant. He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree from Cal State Hayward (now East Bay) and a Master of Business Administration from Golden Gate University. Dave enjoys baking birthday cakes for kids in the foster care system, and he also leads indoor cycling classes. He once bicycled 400 miles around the country of Burundi and has also bicycled from San Francisco to Los Angeles.

Dave Luebkeman
Operations Specialist, Innovation Lab

Charles Richard Maika

Field Officer (Environment), Tanzania

Charles provides practical knowledge to community members on ecological restoration through tree nursery preparation, management, and tree planting. He is passionate about conserving our surrounding environment through organizing our tree-planting campaigns. By involving the participation of community members and local government leaders, Charles has aided in the planting of over 40,000 trees for each planting campaign.

Charles has a Bachelor of Science in Forestry, and has skills in tree seed harvesting, and tree nursery establishment and management. He is also experienced in the areas of  tree improvement techniques such as grafting and budding.

Charles Richard Maika
Field Officer (Environment), Tanzania

Lynne Marian

Director, Marketing & Communications

Lynne leads the Plant With Purpose marketing and communications teams, helping us to connect and support our expanding U.S. partner community. She is passionate about sharing the stories of our international partners and helping individuals, organizations, and churches fulfill their vision to positively impact the global issues of poverty and the environment.

She has more than 30 years of corporate experience and has specialized throughout her career in working with Christian, nonprofit, and global development organizations. Before joining Plant With Purpose, Lynne worked with organizations including World Vision, World Concern, Our Daily Bread, Outreach, Inc., (where she was the founding editor/publisher of Outreach Magazine and the Outreach 100) and many others. Lynne lives in Southern California and is also a life and executive coach.

Lynne Marian
Director, Marketing & Communications

Miguel Martinez

Finance & Accounting Specialist

As the Finance & Accounting Specialist, Miguel enjoys working with systems that facilitate our gears to move. Though Miguel works a lot behind the scenes, his involvement in the organization works as the oil of an engine, keeping things running smoothly. Miguel’s work is crucial to our improvement, as he works with platforms and applications that help us become more efficient and effective. 

One of Miguel’s greatest accomplishments has been transitioning our accounting systems to run online. This includes utilizing new software, formulating and mapping out processes, syncing systems, and more. This ultimately helped us seamlessly transition to remote work during the start of the pandemic. Miguel is an ambitious individual, who keeps our technical knowledge up to date. He is excited about learning new skills and hobbies such as woodworking, photography, pizza making, and being a DJ.

Miguel Martinez
Finance & Accounting Specialist

Milmer Martinez Vergara

Regional Director, LAC

As the Regional Director of our programs in Latin America and the Caribbean, Milmer works closely with all of our local teams as well as community participants to find solutions to problems including food security and wildlife habitat loss . Milmer is a passionate biologist and has a background in Conservation Genetics, and Behavioral Ecology. He is a key player in facilitating positive change in the rural communities we partner with, and seeks to identify opportunities to co-design and co-implement strategies that increase native and endemic biodiversity. 

Through integrating conservation biology and agroecology principles into our transformational development model, Milmer facilitates processes and agricultural designs  that lead to restored natural ecosystems, and consequently create resilient rural communities. He considers it a privilege collaborating with rural farmers communities and teams around the world.

Milmer Martinez Vergara
Regional Director, LAC

Elena McCollim

Senior Grant Writer

Elena delves into the content of our work and crafts it into descriptions to help make a compelling case for why a donor should support us. This entails engaging with some of the most urgent and important issues in international development today: climate change, rural livelihoods, and environmental restoration. 

In a previous career doing policy advocacy on international development issues, Elena was part of the worldwide Jubilee movement that helped to win debt relief for countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, freeing up funding for much-needed social services. She has a PhD  in Leadership Studies, specializing in Nonprofit and Philanthropic Leadership and Management, from  the University of San Diego; and a Master of Arts in International Relations, with concentrations in International Economics and in Social Change and Development, from Johns Hopkins/SAIS. Elena is the proud mother of a teenage daughter. She loves baking, going to the beach, and writing fiction.

Elena McCollim
Senior Grant Writer

Cynthia McNeil Jones

Accounting Assistant

As our Accounting Assistant, Cynthia’s role involves  helping our financial team with creating and editing documents, evaluating budgets, tracking expenses, and reconciling financial books. Cynthia aids our team in all the necessary areas involving financial bookkeeping, and budget processes. 

Cynthia has her certificate in Financial Management Essentials. In her free time, Cynthia is a hiphop dancer, foodie, and karaoke fanatic. She also enjoys making guacamole.

Cynthia McNeil Jones
Accounting Assistant

Richard David Mhina

Country Director, Tanzania

As Country Director for Tanzania, Richard is responsible for managing our overall operations within Tanzania. He plays a pivotal role in delegating and directing agendas and strategy, setting annual plans, making sure organizational resources are effectively utilized, and communicating with stakeholders. Richard is passionate about helping others improve their lives, and has always been someone who wanted to help people, rather than just helping himself. Working as a country director with us gives him an opportunity to contribute in reversing poverty and restoring a degraded environment. 

Richard earned his Master's Degree in Business Management from Eastern and Southern Africa Management Institute. He also has his Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Economics from Sokoine University. Through his time with us, he has helped grow the program from 1,600 families to 11,100 direct beneficiaries and over 50,000 indirect beneficiaries. Over 11 years, he’s also succeeded in reducing the cost per beneficiary by more than 500%. His passion is to share the knowledge of ecosystem health with people and the importance of organic farming in improved health and fighting hunger. Through his dedicated leadership, it was possible for our Tanzania program to receive the certificate of appreciation from the Ministry of Agriculture for successfully supporting ecological organic agriculture within the country.

Richard David Mhina
Country Director, Tanzania

Heather Miller

Grants and Development Systems Manager

As a Grants and Development Systems Manager, Heather finds joy in managing an immensely talented team that together translates stories from the field into accessible narratives that position systems for growth. She is excited about our scalable, holistic, and faith-based approach and is deeply committed to issues of social justice. Heather brings a unique skillset, combining a background in nonprofit program management with a career in the healthcare industry.  

Her previous nonprofit work includes a two-year fellowship in the Philippines with International Justice Mission doing program monitoring and management. She also worked as a “house mom” at GenerateHope, a recovery program for survivors of sex trafficking. Her work in the healthcare industry spans a broad spectrum from antibody research and quality control to data management. Outside of work, Heather enjoys being the proud aunt of four teenagers as well as reading nonfiction, hiking, and beach-going.

Heather Miller
Grants and Development Systems Manager

Tabitha Mkazeni

Field Officer (Agriculture), Tanzania

Through her role, Tabitha provides technical support to farmers through training on sustainable use of agronomic practices. She offers extension support to farmers on the use of agroecology techniques and botanical pesticides to solve problems in the field. Through improving soil, she sees an increase in production and improvement of livelihood.

Tabitha has a Bachelor of Science in Agronomy, and has attended several workshops on organic pesticides. She continues to gain knowledge by attending symposiums on sustainable agriculture and organic banana production. Tabitha is passionate about learning new sustainable farming ideas from farmers in the field. In her free time, she enjoys listening to gospel music.

Tabitha Mkazeni
Field Officer (Agriculture), Tanzania

Bob Morikawa

Senior Director, Innovation Lab

Bob works with farmers and team members around the world to help develop the tools, knowledge, and processes needed to address environmental and economic challenges. He loves getting the opportunity to learn from the farmers and teammates he works alongside as they apply their energy, ingenuity, curiosity, and creativity and come up with practical solutions.

Bob is the coauthor of a peer-reviewed paper about the resilience of smallholder farmers, and he has personally planted over 60,000 trees. Bob has a history of dedicated problem solving, even when he was in ninth grade, getting up at 6:00am every morning before school to deliver newspapers so he could pay for and build his own telescope. Bob has a Bachelors of Science in Agriculture and a Masters of Science in Forest Genetics, and he speaks Spanish, Swahili, and Haitian Kreyol. When he’s not working, Bob enjoys canoeing, paddle making, and memorization. 

Bob Morikawa
Senior Director, Innovation Lab

Mathias Muhizi

Spiritual Renewal Supervisor, DR Congo
Mathias Muhizi
Spiritual Renewal Supervisor, DR Congo

Fidel Mukamyi Mutima

Economic Empowerment Supervisor, DR Congo
Fidel Mukamyi Mutima
Economic Empowerment Supervisor, DR Congo

Honorine Murorunkwere

Monitoring & Evaluation Manager, Burundi

Honorine is passionate about improving our integrated program quality in our Burundi programs through development of our monitoring and evaluation systems. Through strong logic, organizational decision making processes, and periodic performance tracking, she aims to help poor households located in rural Burundi to change their life standard.

Honorine received a Master’s degree in Project planning and Management, from Moi University in Kenya. She also earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication for development from Light University. She is proud of her part in research studies on maternal health and nutrition, resulting in the publishing of an academic paper in January of 2020. Honorine has over 3 years of professional experience in Monitoring and Evaluation. Through work, and in her free time, she loves to bring praise and worship to God.

Honorine Murorunkwere
Monitoring & Evaluation Manager, Burundi

Sinyati Ng'ida

Marketing & Evaluation Officer, Tanzania

Sinyati is passionate about listening to narrations from our beneficiaries and developing them into success stories. In her role, she provides technical know-how to the immediate team on new projects through recording, editing and producing videos. She is excited about communicating organizational activities which ensure projects are done efficiently. Sinyati’s work often involves influencing communities to adopt different technologies.

Sinyati has a Bachelor of Arts in Geography and Environmental Studies. She is a people person and enjoys getting the opportunity to learn more about others through her work each day.

Sinyati Ng'ida
Marketing & Evaluation Officer, Tanzania

Noé Nizigama

Country Director, Burundi

As a Country Director, Noé believes that leadership based on the love of those with whom you serve empowers each staff member. He is passionate about loving those he serves with and those they serve together. Noé is proud of the grace of God who allowed us, in a period of 5 years, to shift into the impactful Watershed approach. Now, our program in Burundi is on a tremendous step of growth both in quality services and in geographical expansion.

Noé was also a big part of the successful partnership agreement between our programs in Burundi and Hope International Burundi as an outcome of a tangible impact of our ECC material. Noé hopes this small beginning could open more opportunities for partnerships in the future. As part of the implementation of his Masters in Gender Institutions and Societies, Noé has recently conducted research on socio-economic gender relationships within VSLA groups supervised by the Burundi team in the sub-watershed of Nyakazu.

Noé Nizigama
Country Director, Burundi

Katherine Padgett

Marketing Communications Assistant

Katherine supports the marketing team in executing communications that connect with and inspire our U.S. partners. She is excited about tracking and interpreting marketing communications analytics to ensure the team is effective in reaching our goals and supporting our mission.

During her time at Plant With Purpose, Katherine has partnered with other members of the team to help create more efficient and collaborative systems for marketing communications projects. She has a Bachelors of Arts in Business and English from Hollins University. Katherine lives in San Diego with her husband and their lemon tree, Lulu. When she’s not working, Katherine enjoys board games, gardening, and Star Wars.

Katherine Padgett
Marketing Communications Assistant

Jumlong Pawkham

Country Director- UHDF, Thailand

Jumlong is responsible for cultivating a space of decision-making with the management team to ensure our work has a positive impact on the community. He has an abundance of practical work experience in sustainable agriculture for over 26 years. Through this, he has impacted his community by giving knowledge to others about sustainable practices that will be passed down through generations. 

Jumlong graduated with a Master’s Degree in Strategy for Development from Rajabhat Chiang Rai University. He is excited about the time he has put into our mission, and loves being an example to his community. Jumlong enjoys spending time with his whole family, and bringing everyone together through fishing.

Jumlong Pawkham
Country Director- UHDF, Thailand

Christi Huizenga Renaud

VP Marketing & Development

Christi leads the marketing and fundraising teams through equally balancing business and mission. This involves raising the support needed to keep our programs running effectively, and speaking boldly about God's love for all people and the world that’s been entrusted to us. Christi is passionate about mobilizing people around a vision, growing a team that people want to join, and building systems that grow as we grow. She is grateful for the opportunity to use these skills to help heal the planet by giving farming families the tools needed to grow beyond poverty. 

Christi has lived on four different continents where she got to know and love a wide variety of people. That experience has equipped her with the understanding of God's love for all people and how environmental stewardship is one of the most effective ways of loving our neighbor. Christi has a Masters Degree in International Business from Thunderbird School of Global Management and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Communications from Calvin University. Christi is a mom to two who love the outdoors even more than she does. 

Christi Huizenga Renaud
VP Marketing & Development

John Richert

Program Operations Specialist

John partners with our Latin America and Caribbean Regional Director as well as country directors in Mexico, Haiti and the Dominican Republic to envision, plan, and achieve our program goals. John works closely with our global partners to creatively design programs, track progress and manage the data that shows the impact of our global work.  Additionally, he works with other members of our International Programs and Innovation Lab teams to ensure our data systems are developing to meet the need of our ever-expanding vision. 

After completing his PhD in Ecology at UC Davis, John served as the Lead Pastor of Discovery Church for eleven years in the university town of Davis, CA. John left ministry in the local church to serve as Chair of the Biology Department at William Jessup University in Sacramento, CA. He continues to teach Biology as an Adjunct Professor at Palm Beach Atlantic University in West Palm Beach, FL. John is an experienced diving instructor, and enjoys exploring the underwater world and sharing the experience with others.

John Richert
Program Operations Specialist

Scott Sabin

Chief Executive Officer

Since 1993, Scott has played a significant role in the progress and growth of our organization. Scott leads a wonderful team of committed individuals and partners along with our amazing colleagues around the world. Scott is overjoyed when he sees our partners blossom and become the leaders of this mission. Scott attributes the success of our organization to perseverance and willingness to ask hard questions about effectiveness and impact.

Through journal articles, public speaking, and his book, “Tending to Eden”, Scott has become an advocate for reforestation as a key component of sustainable community development around the world. Prior to working for Plant With Purpose, he served for seven years in the Navy. Scott received his Bachelor of Science in Political Science from Oregon State University, as well as a Master of Arts in International Relations from University of San Diego. Outside of work, Scott enjoys sailing and spending time with his family. He also  believes that everything can be better expressed through a song lyric.

Scott Sabin
Chief Executive Officer

Laura Adriana Sanjuan Gil

Program Coordinator, Mexico

As our Program Coordinator over the regional programs in Mexico, Laura works diligently to make sure all projects are running smoothly. She is passionate about listening and collecting the stories of the people who participate in the projects and the changes they experience in their way of thinking. Laura worked as a collaborator in the construction of a general historical database of our work performance. 

Laura has a degree in Public Accounting, and has experience as a facilitator of personal finance workshops within the community. She also contributed to the establishment of a sewing workshop in a community of Santa María Mixistlán with women from a local church, in the Sierra Norte de Oaxaca. Laura enjoys painting in her free time.

Laura Adriana Sanjuan Gil
Program Coordinator, Mexico

Grace Santos

Monitoring & Evaluation Specialist

Grace’s role as Monitoring and Evaluation specialist involves a number of tasks such as studying, testing and analyzing how our program methodology impacts the lives of the people with whom we partner. Grace’s accomplishments are significant, one highlight including her study on “Smallholder farmer resilience: a multi-year multidimensional study in the Dominican Republic and Haiti - Trees, Forests and People.”

Grace earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, and is also fluent in Spanish. In her free time, Grace enjoys hiking and mountain climbing.

Grace Santos
Monitoring & Evaluation Specialist

Doug Satre

Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships

Doug represents our work with foundations, businesses and other organizations, by building a support system for our work to thrive. Through building strategic partnerships, his role is pivotal in helping us achieve our goals. Doug is passionate about the challenge to build bridges between our mission and the missions of other organizations, so that we may all move forward together in our visions. 

One of Doug’s proudest accomplishments has involved working with Terramatch and World Resource Institute to have our work in the Congo recognized as one of the top 20 organizations doing restoration work in Africa. He has also worked with the whole team to launch our 2015 Expansion Campaign, which provided funding to double the number of families we serve and to begin working in the Congo and Ethiopia. Doug graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a Bachelor of Arts in history. He later attended Fuller Seminary, earning his Master of Divinity. Doug loves  spending time outdoors, especially skiing, fishing and hiking. He enjoys planning trips and having an exciting experience to look forward to.

Doug Satre
Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships

Will Scheel

Regional Representative, Houston

Will builds lasting and meaningful connections between our incredible donors, Plant With Purpose, and the farmers that we empower together. As the Regional Representative for Houston, Will takes on a variety of roles but is most excited when witnessing the moment a donor first connects their passion and interests to our holistic watershed approach. 

Will graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish from the University of the South in 2001 and a Juris Doctor Degree from Washington University School of Law in 2010. Will loves to travel and explore the outdoors with his wife, Courtni, and their two kids.

Will Scheel
Regional Representative, Houston

Corbyn Small

Development Director

As Development Director, Corbyn serves a team of fundraisers as they seek to connect partnering supporters in the U.S. and Canada to partnering families around the world. Corbyn considers it an honor and a privilege to share the stories of farming families who are building new opportunities in their communities and bringing restoration to this beautiful earth. In 2011, Corbyn moved to Denver, Colorado and successfully pioneered our first regional representative position before being promoted to Development Director. 

Corbyn earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration at Point Loma Nazarene University. Over the last decade, Corbyn has sought to embody a truly relational culture of fundraising. He has had the opportunity to work with our programs team and key funders on significant expansion in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Ethiopia, resulting in impactful change. Outside of thoughtful and effective community development work, Corbyn loves eating spicy foods and riding through Colorado’s incredible bike trails with his family.

Corbyn Small
Development Director

Tsigereda Tadesse

Program Support Officer, Ethiopia

As a Program Support Officer in Ethiopia, Tsigereda strives to integrate our three key areas of focus: Environmental restoration, economic empowerment, and spiritual renewal. Through her work, she takes the lead on organization, empowerment, and leadership elements in the programs in Ethiopia.

Before joining our team, Tsigereda earned a Bachelor of Arts in management. She is a committed and passionate member of the team, and is excited to see how the program continues to improve lives in Ethiopia.

Tsigereda Tadesse
Program Support Officer, Ethiopia

Lewtie Tafere

Administrator, Ethiopia
Lewtie Tafere
Administrator, Ethiopia

Getnet Alemayehu Tareke

Pilot Project Manager, Ethiopia
Getnet Alemayehu Tareke
Pilot Project Manager, Ethiopia

Emily Thome

Grant Writer

Emily works to combine data and statistics with partners' stories from the field to create both a realistic and comprehensive narrative of what we are doing around the world. Emily takes on a supportive role on the Grants Team, working diligently through organization and administration. During her time at Point Loma Nazarene University, she dove into a study on the correlation between economic empowerment and the reduction of gender-based violence in rural farming communities. This inspired Emily to join our team and further our mission. 

Through an experience living in Amman, Jordan, Emily had the honor of working alongside Syrian refugees through yoga-based therapy. Whilst teaching classes, Emily formed a passion for writing ethical stories of survivors of trauma in a way that communicates dignity and empowerment. When Emily is not at work, you can find her on the beaches of San Diego catching a wave or drinking a good cup of coffee.

Emily Thome
Grant Writer

Paul Thompson

Chief Operating Officer

Paul is a trusted and strategic thought-partner to the CEO, Senior Leadership Team, and the Global Leadership Team. Paul is overjoyed to help steward us into and through a period of rapid growth and expansion of both impact and mission. Paul is passionate about our holistic mission and, in particular, empowering the diverse communities and people served by our global organization. As COO, Paul supports the development of integrated and streamlined systems, processes, and resources necessary for Plant WIth Purpose to become the premier organization operating at the nexus of environmental restoration and poverty alleviation. 

Paul has served as CEO of five international organizations prior to joining Plant With Purpose. In addition, he was on the Plant With Purpose Advisory Board for 25 years. Paul has several certifications from the Center for Creative Leadership and has been privileged to provide strategic counsel in governance, long-range planning, and leadership development to over 25 community-based and international organizations. For nearly 45 years, Paul has been a proud husband to Konny Thompson. He is also the loving father of four children; Jenelle, Blake, Brittany, and Josh and grandfather to Drew, George, Theodore, and Rosemary.

Paul Thompson
Chief Operating Officer

Jared White

Regional Director, Africa

Since 2016, Jared has served as the critical link between our San Diego office and all of our programs in Africa. He is motivated by his faith in Jesus and passionate about working interdependently with our local teams to design a creative yet impactful program and develop a culture of mission and high-impact driven transformational development.

For 10 years Jared lived and worked in Uganda expanding his experience and passion for international development. He co-founded Pulse Village Transport Limited, an innovative enterprise that manufactures and distributes locally assembled motorcycle ambulances needed for critical medical transportation in Uganda. Prior, he served as a director of Invisible Children’s efforts on the ground in Uganda. Jared oversaw program design, implementation, and operations. Jared has his Master of Arts in International Development from Eastern University’s School of Leadership and Development and a Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design and Biblical Studies from Biola University. In 2009, Jared received the Young Alumni Award from Biola University for his mission-driven work in Uganda. Jared is an adventurer at heart and in 2009 fulfilled his dream of riding motorcycles with some close friends through five East African countries.

Jared White
Regional Director, Africa

Shiloah Williams

Donor Communications Specialist

As our Donor Communications Specialist, Shiloah is responsible for creating content to cultivate deeper relationships with our wonderful donors. Through storytelling and implementing creative ways to engage donors, she hopes to bring inspiration and connection between people and our mission. 

Shiloah’s accomplishments include her completion of a climate justice fellowship, and writing/co-producing short films on environmental justice awareness. She also has a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from California Baptist University. Shiloah enjoys hiking, watching musical theater, and writing poetry and thriller short stories.

Shiloah Williams
Donor Communications Specialist

Allie Wilson Plasek

Regional Representative, Western U.S.

Allie works with our partners by helping match their passions and interests to our holistic approach of caring for our broken world. Whether it be one or a mixture of spiritual renewal, economic empowerment, or environmental restoration, she works with partners as they express what they deeply care about. She is very passionate about regenerative farms/gardens and finding ways for people to connect with nature and realize their roles within ecosystems. 

Allie attended California State University, Chico for Religious Studies and African Studies. She continued her education at Princeton Theological, and earned a Master's of Divinity. She has created gardens and helped co-create a habitat gardening cooperative focused on regenerative landscaping. Allie loves reading and talking about theology/where we see God in our world. She has bees and a habitat garden for them to forage, and uses their honey to make wildflower Mead.

Allie Wilson Plasek
Regional Representative, Western U.S.

Senior Leadership Team

Scott Sabin

Chief Executive Officer

Since 1993, Scott has played a significant role in the progress and growth of our organization. Scott leads a wonderful team of committed individuals and partners along with our amazing colleagues around the world. Scott is overjoyed when he sees our partners blossom and become the leaders of this mission. Scott attributes the success of our organization to perseverance and willingness to ask hard questions about effectiveness and impact.

Through journal articles, public speaking, and his book, “Tending to Eden”, Scott has become an advocate for reforestation as a key component of sustainable community development around the world. Prior to working for Plant With Purpose, he served for seven years in the Navy. Scott received his Bachelor of Science in Political Science from Oregon State University, as well as a Master of Arts in International Relations from University of San Diego. Outside of work, Scott enjoys sailing and spending time with his family. He also  believes that everything can be better expressed through a song lyric.

Scott Sabin
Chief Executive Officer

Paul Thompson

Chief Operating Officer

Paul is a trusted and strategic thought-partner to the CEO, Senior Leadership Team, and the Global Leadership Team. Paul is overjoyed to help steward us into and through a period of rapid growth and expansion of both impact and mission. Paul is passionate about our holistic mission and, in particular, empowering the diverse communities and people served by our global organization. As COO, Paul supports the development of integrated and streamlined systems, processes, and resources necessary for Plant WIth Purpose to become the premier organization operating at the nexus of environmental restoration and poverty alleviation. 

Paul has served as CEO of five international organizations prior to joining Plant With Purpose. In addition, he was on the Plant With Purpose Advisory Board for 25 years. Paul has several certifications from the Center for Creative Leadership and has been privileged to provide strategic counsel in governance, long-range planning, and leadership development to over 25 community-based and international organizations. For nearly 45 years, Paul has been a proud husband to Konny Thompson. He is also the loving father of four children; Jenelle, Blake, Brittany, and Josh and grandfather to Drew, George, Theodore, and Rosemary.

Paul Thompson
Chief Operating Officer

Kristen Kreitzer

V.P. of Finance & Administration

As V.P. of Finance and Administration, Kristen takes on a number of tasks involving overseeing financial and human resource efforts, and coordinating strategic development planning. Kristen is heavily involved in linking Plant With Purpose’s transformative work in the field to our U.S. headquarters.  Drawing on her background in Organization Development and applied behavior science, she believes in designing learning and development practices that begin with the self as key to understanding each person's unique role in team dynamics. Kristen believes that as followers of Christ, we are called to create relationship-based community-oriented workplaces that are filled with love and care. By focusing on holistic well-being, accepting all facets of diversity, and loving and caring for all of humanity, she strives to develop people  that lead from the head and the heart.

Among Kristen’s many accomplishments has been her direct involvement in building our finance, human resources, and information technology teams from the ground up. Kristen has been a driving force behind our efforts thus far, but she is most excited about the future of Plant With Purpose. She believes we could all use a little more love and kindness in our lives, and that there is no limit to the amount of love we can extend to others. Kristen is currently working on fulfilling her life-long dream of learning Mandarin!

Kristen Kreitzer
V.P. of Finance & Administration

Donna Johnson-Lebert

Executive Assistant & Talent Coordinator

In her role as Executive Assistant, Donna has the privilege of supporting all of the CEO administrative functions and providing board support. As the Talent Coordinator, she contributes to growing a diverse team of gifted and passionate individuals who bring their talents to fulfill our mission. Donna is most passionate about having a part in creating a team of such dedicated individuals and supporting the committed group of people who serve on the Plant With Purpose Board. 

Donna earned her Bachelor of Science in Environmental Policy Analysis and Planning at University of California, Davis. As an outdoor enthusiast, she loves the beach and water sports  - kayaking and paddle boarding among her favorites. She is also an avid hiker with trekking highlights including the West Highland Way, Scotland; the Routeburn Track, New Zealand; and the Machu Picchu trail in Peru.

Donna Johnson-Lebert
Executive Assistant & Talent Coordinator

Christi Huizenga Renaud

VP Marketing & Development

Christi leads the marketing and fundraising teams through equally balancing business and mission. This involves raising the support needed to keep our programs running effectively, and speaking boldly about God's love for all people and the world that’s been entrusted to us. Christi is passionate about mobilizing people around a vision, growing a team that people want to join, and building systems that grow as we grow. She is grateful for the opportunity to use these skills to help heal the planet by giving farming families the tools needed to grow beyond poverty. 

Christi has lived on four different continents where she got to know and love a wide variety of people. That experience has equipped her with the understanding of God's love for all people and how environmental stewardship is one of the most effective ways of loving our neighbor. Christi has a Masters Degree in International Business from Thunderbird School of Global Management and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Communications from Calvin University. Christi is a mom to two who love the outdoors even more than she does. 

Christi Huizenga Renaud
VP Marketing & Development

Doug Satre

Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships

Doug represents our work with foundations, businesses and other organizations, by building a support system for our work to thrive. Through building strategic partnerships, his role is pivotal in helping us achieve our goals. Doug is passionate about the challenge to build bridges between our mission and the missions of other organizations, so that we may all move forward together in our visions. 

One of Doug’s proudest accomplishments has involved working with Terramatch and World Resource Institute to have our work in the Congo recognized as one of the top 20 organizations doing restoration work in Africa. He has also worked with the whole team to launch our 2015 Expansion Campaign, which provided funding to double the number of families we serve and to begin working in the Congo and Ethiopia. Doug graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a Bachelor of Arts in history. He later attended Fuller Seminary, earning his Master of Divinity. Doug loves  spending time outdoors, especially skiing, fishing and hiking. He enjoys planning trips and having an exciting experience to look forward to.

Doug Satre
Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships

Josh Kyallo

V.P. of International Programs

Josh Kyallo joined our team as Vice President of International Programs in 2021. With over 28 years of leadership experience in international program development and humanitarian response, Josh possesses a deep understanding of the multidimensional nature of poverty and commitment to the nuance required to create a world free from it. Josh is a servant leader at heart with a wide and far reach, extending his coaching, communication, and experience in management and leadership across cultural, language, and physical boundaries. His fluency in English and Swahili are a huge asset in developing and maintaining relationships with international programs and partners

Born in Kenya, Josh has lived and worked in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, Somalia, and the U.S. and has designed and led programs impacting 55+ countries around the world. In 2020, Josh launched Community Rising Africa Network (CRANE) to encourage and promote self-reliance by connecting African innovators with resources and partnerships. He served as founder and managing director by creating sustainable solutions for health, education, poverty alleviation, and development challenges affecting millions of vulnerable populations in Sub-Saharan Africa. Currently, Josh lives in San Diego, CA where he enjoys spending time with family and serving in the community. He is a fitness freak who has played competitive soccer and run charity marathons around the globe. He also enjoys hitting the gym regularly,  has been involved in stage theater acting and directing, and is passionate about literature and creative arts.

Josh Kyallo
V.P. of International Programs

Bob Morikawa

Senior Director, Innovation Lab

Bob works with farmers and team members around the world to help develop the tools, knowledge, and processes needed to address environmental and economic challenges. He loves getting the opportunity to learn from the farmers and teammates he works alongside as they apply their energy, ingenuity, curiosity, and creativity and come up with practical solutions.

Bob is the coauthor of a peer-reviewed paper about the resilience of smallholder farmers, and he has personally planted over 60,000 trees. Bob has a history of dedicated problem solving, even when he was in ninth grade, getting up at 6:00am every morning before school to deliver newspapers so he could pay for and build his own telescope. Bob has a Bachelors of Science in Agriculture and a Masters of Science in Forest Genetics, and he speaks Spanish, Swahili, and Haitian Kreyol. When he’s not working, Bob enjoys canoeing, paddle making, and memorization. 

Bob Morikawa
Senior Director, Innovation Lab

Administration

Kristen Kreitzer

V.P. of Finance & Administration

As V.P. of Finance and Administration, Kristen takes on a number of tasks involving overseeing financial and human resource efforts, and coordinating strategic development planning. Kristen is heavily involved in linking Plant With Purpose’s transformative work in the field to our U.S. headquarters.  Drawing on her background in Organization Development and applied behavior science, she believes in designing learning and development practices that begin with the self as key to understanding each person's unique role in team dynamics. Kristen believes that as followers of Christ, we are called to create relationship-based community-oriented workplaces that are filled with love and care. By focusing on holistic well-being, accepting all facets of diversity, and loving and caring for all of humanity, she strives to develop people  that lead from the head and the heart.

Among Kristen’s many accomplishments has been her direct involvement in building our finance, human resources, and information technology teams from the ground up. Kristen has been a driving force behind our efforts thus far, but she is most excited about the future of Plant With Purpose. She believes we could all use a little more love and kindness in our lives, and that there is no limit to the amount of love we can extend to others. Kristen is currently working on fulfilling her life-long dream of learning Mandarin!

Kristen Kreitzer
V.P. of Finance & Administration

Miguel Martinez

Finance & Accounting Specialist

As the Finance & Accounting Specialist, Miguel enjoys working with systems that facilitate our gears to move. Though Miguel works a lot behind the scenes, his involvement in the organization works as the oil of an engine, keeping things running smoothly. Miguel’s work is crucial to our improvement, as he works with platforms and applications that help us become more efficient and effective. 

One of Miguel’s greatest accomplishments has been transitioning our accounting systems to run online. This includes utilizing new software, formulating and mapping out processes, syncing systems, and more. This ultimately helped us seamlessly transition to remote work during the start of the pandemic. Miguel is an ambitious individual, who keeps our technical knowledge up to date. He is excited about learning new skills and hobbies such as woodworking, photography, pizza making, and being a DJ.

Miguel Martinez
Finance & Accounting Specialist

Sophia Casmano

Talent & Internship Coordinator

As Talent & Internship Coordinator, Sophia's role is relationship focused and works to promote a human centered workplace for her teammates, interns, and the organization. On the People & Culture team she facilitates organizational change by creating systems and spaces for her teammates to re-imagine and co-create a relevant culture of learning, diversity and inclusion, coaching, and holistic wellbeing through safe space dialogue, and brainstorming.

After earning a Bachelor of Arts in Nutrition at Point Loma Nazarene University, Sophia’s interest in food systems around the world sparked a need to learn more about our approach. Her welcoming nature and loving spirit has carried her into many accomplishments throughout her time with us. Sophie enjoys learning Spanish, exploring Latin America, bird watching, and learning more about agroforestry and rural food systems.

Sophia Casmano
Talent & Internship Coordinator

Cynthia McNeil Jones

Accounting Assistant

As our Accounting Assistant, Cynthia’s role involves  helping our financial team with creating and editing documents, evaluating budgets, tracking expenses, and reconciling financial books. Cynthia aids our team in all the necessary areas involving financial bookkeeping, and budget processes. 

Cynthia has her certificate in Financial Management Essentials. In her free time, Cynthia is a hiphop dancer, foodie, and karaoke fanatic. She also enjoys making guacamole.

Cynthia McNeil Jones
Accounting Assistant

Donna Johnson-Lebert

Executive Assistant & Talent Coordinator

In her role as Executive Assistant, Donna has the privilege of supporting all of the CEO administrative functions and providing board support. As the Talent Coordinator, she contributes to growing a diverse team of gifted and passionate individuals who bring their talents to fulfill our mission. Donna is most passionate about having a part in creating a team of such dedicated individuals and supporting the committed group of people who serve on the Plant With Purpose Board. 

Donna earned her Bachelor of Science in Environmental Policy Analysis and Planning at University of California, Davis. As an outdoor enthusiast, she loves the beach and water sports  - kayaking and paddle boarding among her favorites. She is also an avid hiker with trekking highlights including the West Highland Way, Scotland; the Routeburn Track, New Zealand; and the Machu Picchu trail in Peru.

Donna Johnson-Lebert
Executive Assistant & Talent Coordinator

Resource Development

Christi Huizenga Renaud

VP Marketing & Development

Christi leads the marketing and fundraising teams through equally balancing business and mission. This involves raising the support needed to keep our programs running effectively, and speaking boldly about God's love for all people and the world that’s been entrusted to us. Christi is passionate about mobilizing people around a vision, growing a team that people want to join, and building systems that grow as we grow. She is grateful for the opportunity to use these skills to help heal the planet by giving farming families the tools needed to grow beyond poverty. 

Christi has lived on four different continents where she got to know and love a wide variety of people. That experience has equipped her with the understanding of God's love for all people and how environmental stewardship is one of the most effective ways of loving our neighbor. Christi has a Masters Degree in International Business from Thunderbird School of Global Management and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Communications from Calvin University. Christi is a mom to two who love the outdoors even more than she does. 

Christi Huizenga Renaud
VP Marketing & Development

Corbyn Small

Development Director

As Development Director, Corbyn serves a team of fundraisers as they seek to connect partnering supporters in the U.S. and Canada to partnering families around the world. Corbyn considers it an honor and a privilege to share the stories of farming families who are building new opportunities in their communities and bringing restoration to this beautiful earth. In 2011, Corbyn moved to Denver, Colorado and successfully pioneered our first regional representative position before being promoted to Development Director. 

Corbyn earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration at Point Loma Nazarene University. Over the last decade, Corbyn has sought to embody a truly relational culture of fundraising. He has had the opportunity to work with our programs team and key funders on significant expansion in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Ethiopia, resulting in impactful change. Outside of thoughtful and effective community development work, Corbyn loves eating spicy foods and riding through Colorado’s incredible bike trails with his family.

Corbyn Small
Development Director

Doug Satre

Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships

Doug represents our work with foundations, businesses and other organizations, by building a support system for our work to thrive. Through building strategic partnerships, his role is pivotal in helping us achieve our goals. Doug is passionate about the challenge to build bridges between our mission and the missions of other organizations, so that we may all move forward together in our visions. 

One of Doug’s proudest accomplishments has involved working with Terramatch and World Resource Institute to have our work in the Congo recognized as one of the top 20 organizations doing restoration work in Africa. He has also worked with the whole team to launch our 2015 Expansion Campaign, which provided funding to double the number of families we serve and to begin working in the Congo and Ethiopia. Doug graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a Bachelor of Arts in history. He later attended Fuller Seminary, earning his Master of Divinity. Doug loves  spending time outdoors, especially skiing, fishing and hiking. He enjoys planning trips and having an exciting experience to look forward to.

Doug Satre
Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships

Valerie Foulkes

Strategic Initiatives Manager

As Strategic Initiatives Manager, Valerie is pursuing new tree-planting partnerships and exploring the carbon market. As more corporations seek to become net-zero, Valerie is creating opportunities for them to equip our partnering farmers, as they plant trees and restore their watersheds, in an exciting new revenue stream. This will help us grow significantly to achieve our THRIVE 25 goals. 

Valerie began her journey on our team as the first Regional Representative in Houston, Texas in 2016. Valerie spent 5 years joyfully building a local community of partnerships with many new families, churches and foundations to support the global work of Plant With Purpose. Previously, Valerie was an Advocacy Advisor with Save the Children International in New York where she successfully influenced various UN resolutions related to maternal, newborn/child health as well as child migrant rights. Valerie's husband is from Australia and together they are parents to triplet toddler boys. After 10 years living in the U.S. (New York and Houston), she's excited to be back in her hometown, Toronto, Canada.

Valerie Foulkes
Strategic Initiatives Manager

Will Scheel

Regional Representative, Houston

Will builds lasting and meaningful connections between our incredible donors, Plant With Purpose, and the farmers that we empower together. As the Regional Representative for Houston, Will takes on a variety of roles but is most excited when witnessing the moment a donor first connects their passion and interests to our holistic watershed approach. 

Will graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish from the University of the South in 2001 and a Juris Doctor Degree from Washington University School of Law in 2010. Will loves to travel and explore the outdoors with his wife, Courtni, and their two kids.

Will Scheel
Regional Representative, Houston

Allie Wilson Plasek

Regional Representative, Western U.S.

Allie works with our partners by helping match their passions and interests to our holistic approach of caring for our broken world. Whether it be one or a mixture of spiritual renewal, economic empowerment, or environmental restoration, she works with partners as they express what they deeply care about. She is very passionate about regenerative farms/gardens and finding ways for people to connect with nature and realize their roles within ecosystems. 

Allie attended California State University, Chico for Religious Studies and African Studies. She continued her education at Princeton Theological, and earned a Master's of Divinity. She has created gardens and helped co-create a habitat gardening cooperative focused on regenerative landscaping. Allie loves reading and talking about theology/where we see God in our world. She has bees and a habitat garden for them to forage, and uses their honey to make wildflower Mead.

Allie Wilson Plasek
Regional Representative, Western U.S.

McKinley Lewandowski

Regional Representative Associate, Denver

McKinley works in the Denver area as our Regional Representative Associate. She spends her time offering support to the Development Team in every capacity. She is excited to participate in our mission by helping others to see the value in our work and the joy of supporting through giving. 

McKinley earned her Undergraduate Degree in International Development with focuses in Sociology, African and Environmental Studies from Calvin University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She also completed her Masters Degree in Philanthropic Studies from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University in Indianapolis. When McKinley isn’t working, you can find her listening to true crime, or cheering on the Indianapolis Colts!

McKinley Lewandowski
Regional Representative Associate, Denver

Innovation Lab

Bob Morikawa

Senior Director, Innovation Lab

Bob works with farmers and team members around the world to help develop the tools, knowledge, and processes needed to address environmental and economic challenges. He loves getting the opportunity to learn from the farmers and teammates he works alongside as they apply their energy, ingenuity, curiosity, and creativity and come up with practical solutions.

Bob is the coauthor of a peer-reviewed paper about the resilience of smallholder farmers, and he has personally planted over 60,000 trees. Bob has a history of dedicated problem solving, even when he was in ninth grade, getting up at 6:00am every morning before school to deliver newspapers so he could pay for and build his own telescope. Bob has a Bachelors of Science in Agriculture and a Masters of Science in Forest Genetics, and he speaks Spanish, Swahili, and Haitian Kreyol. When he’s not working, Bob enjoys canoeing, paddle making, and memorization. 

Bob Morikawa
Senior Director, Innovation Lab

Corey Chin

Monitoring & Evaluation Manager

Corey works with our local program teams to monitor progress and measure results. His team uses these data to understand our program's impact and when applicable, make "course corrections" as we strive for continuous improvement. He is passionate about balancing the application of scientific rigor while upholding the value of relationships throughout the entire monitoring and evaluation process. 

In collaboration with colleagues from around the globe, Corey has co authored articles published in peer-reviewed journals covering aspects of our program such as resilience, peace & reconciliation, and remote sensing. Corey has a Bachelors of Science in Environmental Studies with a minor in Geography, and he is trained in project management, data equity, geographic information systems, plant identification, and wildlife tracking. 

Corey Chin
Monitoring & Evaluation Manager

Grace Santos

Monitoring & Evaluation Specialist

Grace’s role as Monitoring and Evaluation specialist involves a number of tasks such as studying, testing and analyzing how our program methodology impacts the lives of the people with whom we partner. Grace’s accomplishments are significant, one highlight including her study on “Smallholder farmer resilience: a multi-year multidimensional study in the Dominican Republic and Haiti - Trees, Forests and People.”

Grace earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, and is also fluent in Spanish. In her free time, Grace enjoys hiking and mountain climbing.

Grace Santos
Monitoring & Evaluation Specialist

Dave Luebkeman

Operations Specialist, Innovation Lab

Working in the Innovation Lab as our Operations Specialist, Dave seeks out data which tells the Plant With Purpose story, sheds light on program areas needing attention, and explores new geographic areas for future expansion. Dave is a data dog and loves hunting for information knowing the work he does helps his colleagues do their job better. 

Dave started his career as a Certified Public Accountant. He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree from Cal State Hayward (now East Bay) and a Master of Business Administration from Golden Gate University. Dave enjoys baking birthday cakes for kids in the foster care system, and he also leads indoor cycling classes. He once bicycled 400 miles around the country of Burundi and has also bicycled from San Francisco to Los Angeles.

Dave Luebkeman
Operations Specialist, Innovation Lab

International Programs

Josh Kyallo

V.P. of International Programs

Josh Kyallo joined our team as Vice President of International Programs in 2021. With over 28 years of leadership experience in international program development and humanitarian response, Josh possesses a deep understanding of the multidimensional nature of poverty and commitment to the nuance required to create a world free from it. Josh is a servant leader at heart with a wide and far reach, extending his coaching, communication, and experience in management and leadership across cultural, language, and physical boundaries. His fluency in English and Swahili are a huge asset in developing and maintaining relationships with international programs and partners

Born in Kenya, Josh has lived and worked in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, Somalia, and the U.S. and has designed and led programs impacting 55+ countries around the world. In 2020, Josh launched Community Rising Africa Network (CRANE) to encourage and promote self-reliance by connecting African innovators with resources and partnerships. He served as founder and managing director by creating sustainable solutions for health, education, poverty alleviation, and development challenges affecting millions of vulnerable populations in Sub-Saharan Africa. Currently, Josh lives in San Diego, CA where he enjoys spending time with family and serving in the community. He is a fitness freak who has played competitive soccer and run charity marathons around the globe. He also enjoys hitting the gym regularly,  has been involved in stage theater acting and directing, and is passionate about literature and creative arts.

Josh Kyallo
V.P. of International Programs

Jared White

Regional Director, Africa

Since 2016, Jared has served as the critical link between our San Diego office and all of our programs in Africa. He is motivated by his faith in Jesus and passionate about working interdependently with our local teams to design a creative yet impactful program and develop a culture of mission and high-impact driven transformational development.

For 10 years Jared lived and worked in Uganda expanding his experience and passion for international development. He co-founded Pulse Village Transport Limited, an innovative enterprise that manufactures and distributes locally assembled motorcycle ambulances needed for critical medical transportation in Uganda. Prior, he served as a director of Invisible Children’s efforts on the ground in Uganda. Jared oversaw program design, implementation, and operations. Jared has his Master of Arts in International Development from Eastern University’s School of Leadership and Development and a Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design and Biblical Studies from Biola University. In 2009, Jared received the Young Alumni Award from Biola University for his mission-driven work in Uganda. Jared is an adventurer at heart and in 2009 fulfilled his dream of riding motorcycles with some close friends through five East African countries.

Jared White
Regional Director, Africa

Milmer Martinez Vergara

Regional Director, LAC

As the Regional Director of our programs in Latin America and the Caribbean, Milmer works closely with all of our local teams as well as community participants to find solutions to problems including food security and wildlife habitat loss . Milmer is a passionate biologist and has a background in Conservation Genetics, and Behavioral Ecology. He is a key player in facilitating positive change in the rural communities we partner with, and seeks to identify opportunities to co-design and co-implement strategies that increase native and endemic biodiversity. 

Through integrating conservation biology and agroecology principles into our transformational development model, Milmer facilitates processes and agricultural designs  that lead to restored natural ecosystems, and consequently create resilient rural communities. He considers it a privilege collaborating with rural farmers communities and teams around the world.

Milmer Martinez Vergara
Regional Director, LAC

Annah Amani

Programs Officer, Africa

Annah serves as a key link between the San Diego office and programs in Ethiopia, Tanzania, Burundi, and DR Congo. She is responsible for ensuring excellent communication in both directions in order for priorities to be clear and to maintain genuine partnerships that flourish. Relationally, Annah works with and alongside the Africa Programs Director and local teams in a spirit of interdependent partnership while ensuring performance and accountability. She is most passionate about being part of a movement that transforms our participants lives, communities, nations and contributes to the global greater good of restoring creation.

Through her M.P.H. studies at University of California, Los Angeles, she served as the team manager in the development of programs to prevent maternal mortality in rural Kenya. After her M.P.H, she went on to serve as the regional program coordinator for Christian Foundation for Children and Aging (now Unbound Uganda). Dr. Amani’s research sought to represent the voice of rural women in Uganda on the vital matter of birthplace choice. After completion of her Ph.D, Annah taught global health and other public health courses as an adjunct lecturer for the Department of Public Health Sciences at Clemson University in South Carolina. In her early childhood, Annah was a child refugee from Uganda to Los Angeles. As a child refugee, Annah was aided by many people and non-governmental organizations such as Amnesty International. The refugee experience sparked an interest in doing work that “aided” others in the global community. She is committed to doing progressive work in the fields of health, education, social justice and community development.

Annah Amani
Programs Officer, Africa

John Richert

Program Operations Specialist

John partners with our Latin America and Caribbean Regional Director as well as country directors in Mexico, Haiti and the Dominican Republic to envision, plan, and achieve our program goals. John works closely with our global partners to creatively design programs, track progress and manage the data that shows the impact of our global work.  Additionally, he works with other members of our International Programs and Innovation Lab teams to ensure our data systems are developing to meet the need of our ever-expanding vision. 

After completing his PhD in Ecology at UC Davis, John served as the Lead Pastor of Discovery Church for eleven years in the university town of Davis, CA. John left ministry in the local church to serve as Chair of the Biology Department at William Jessup University in Sacramento, CA. He continues to teach Biology as an Adjunct Professor at Palm Beach Atlantic University in West Palm Beach, FL. John is an experienced diving instructor, and enjoys exploring the underwater world and sharing the experience with others.

John Richert
Program Operations Specialist

Marketing

Lynne Marian

Director, Marketing & Communications

Lynne leads the Plant With Purpose marketing and communications teams, helping us to connect and support our expanding U.S. partner community. She is passionate about sharing the stories of our international partners and helping individuals, organizations, and churches fulfill their vision to positively impact the global issues of poverty and the environment.

She has more than 30 years of corporate experience and has specialized throughout her career in working with Christian, nonprofit, and global development organizations. Before joining Plant With Purpose, Lynne worked with organizations including World Vision, World Concern, Our Daily Bread, Outreach, Inc., (where she was the founding editor/publisher of Outreach Magazine and the Outreach 100) and many others. Lynne lives in Southern California and is also a life and executive coach.

Lynne Marian
Director, Marketing & Communications

Philippe Lazaro

Communications Manager / Storyteller

Philippe shares the stories of people living at the forefront of the climate crisis, who are working to transform their ecosystems and communities. He loves emphasizing the human experience, and keeping conversations about the environment centered on the communities most affected by it. Philippe has led storytelling trips to Mexico, Thailand, Colombia, Tanzania, South Africa, Haiti, and a number of other countries. He has previously served in similar roles at Liberty in North Korea and Mobility International.

Philippe obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Communications, as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Global Studies at UC Santa Barbara. He furthered his studies by earning a Master of Arts in International Studies as well as a Master of Arts in Nonprofit Management at University of Oregon. Philippe is also an illustrator, podcaster, and digital artist. Outside of work, Philippe loves spending time with his wife and their three kids (under three!).

Philippe Lazaro
Communications Manager / Storyteller

Katherine Padgett

Marketing Communications Assistant

Katherine supports the marketing team in executing communications that connect with and inspire our U.S. partners. She is excited about tracking and interpreting marketing communications analytics to ensure the team is effective in reaching our goals and supporting our mission.

During her time at Plant With Purpose, Katherine has partnered with other members of the team to help create more efficient and collaborative systems for marketing communications projects. She has a Bachelors of Arts in Business and English from Hollins University. Katherine lives in San Diego with her husband and their lemon tree, Lulu. When she’s not working, Katherine enjoys board games, gardening, and Star Wars.

Katherine Padgett
Marketing Communications Assistant

Shiloah Williams

Donor Communications Specialist

As our Donor Communications Specialist, Shiloah is responsible for creating content to cultivate deeper relationships with our wonderful donors. Through storytelling and implementing creative ways to engage donors, she hopes to bring inspiration and connection between people and our mission. 

Shiloah’s accomplishments include her completion of a climate justice fellowship, and writing/co-producing short films on environmental justice awareness. She also has a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from California Baptist University. Shiloah enjoys hiking, watching musical theater, and writing poetry and thriller short stories.

Shiloah Williams
Donor Communications Specialist

Macy Day

Marketing Associate

Starting as an intern during the fall semester of 2021, Macy has recently joined the marketing team as our Marketing Associate. Working from social media strategy and content, to assisting with event coordination, Macy provides assistance to the marketing department in the necessary areas. She is passionate about displaying our mission in an ethical, truthful, and authentic way, while connecting with our current and potential supporters via social media. 

Macy resides in Nashville, Tennessee and has previous experience in videography, photography, and assistant positions. She is passionate about traveling, connecting with people from all different walks of life, and discovering the relationship of humanity within our differences. When Macy is not working, she is discovering new forms of artistic expression including collaging, pottery, and painting. She is very excited to be working toward earning her scuba diving certification in hopes of exploring the underwater world.

Macy Day
Marketing Associate

Sustaining Systems/Grants

Heather Miller

Grants and Development Systems Manager

As a Grants and Development Systems Manager, Heather finds joy in managing an immensely talented team that together translates stories from the field into accessible narratives that position systems for growth. She is excited about our scalable, holistic, and faith-based approach and is deeply committed to issues of social justice. Heather brings a unique skillset, combining a background in nonprofit program management with a career in the healthcare industry.  

Her previous nonprofit work includes a two-year fellowship in the Philippines with International Justice Mission doing program monitoring and management. She also worked as a “house mom” at GenerateHope, a recovery program for survivors of sex trafficking. Her work in the healthcare industry spans a broad spectrum from antibody research and quality control to data management. Outside of work, Heather enjoys being the proud aunt of four teenagers as well as reading nonfiction, hiking, and beach-going.

Heather Miller
Grants and Development Systems Manager

Elena McCollim

Senior Grant Writer

Elena delves into the content of our work and crafts it into descriptions to help make a compelling case for why a donor should support us. This entails engaging with some of the most urgent and important issues in international development today: climate change, rural livelihoods, and environmental restoration. 

In a previous career doing policy advocacy on international development issues, Elena was part of the worldwide Jubilee movement that helped to win debt relief for countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, freeing up funding for much-needed social services. She has a PhD  in Leadership Studies, specializing in Nonprofit and Philanthropic Leadership and Management, from  the University of San Diego; and a Master of Arts in International Relations, with concentrations in International Economics and in Social Change and Development, from Johns Hopkins/SAIS. Elena is the proud mother of a teenage daughter. She loves baking, going to the beach, and writing fiction.

Elena McCollim
Senior Grant Writer

Ari Burcombe

Development Assistant

Ari works closely with our development team to analyze data and inform future strategic fundraising decisions. She takes on tasks involving donation management, fundraising data analytics, and connecting donors with our team. Ari is a creative and action-oriented team member who is excited about research, consulting, and the development of our donor partnerships. 

Ari graduated from California State University San Marcos with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and a focus in Marketing. While not at work, Ari enjoys rock climbing, hiking, and camping with her husband and loved ones.

Ari Burcombe
Development Assistant

Emily Thome

Grant Writer

Emily works to combine data and statistics with partners' stories from the field to create both a realistic and comprehensive narrative of what we are doing around the world. Emily takes on a supportive role on the Grants Team, working diligently through organization and administration. During her time at Point Loma Nazarene University, she dove into a study on the correlation between economic empowerment and the reduction of gender-based violence in rural farming communities. This inspired Emily to join our team and further our mission. 

Through an experience living in Amman, Jordan, Emily had the honor of working alongside Syrian refugees through yoga-based therapy. Whilst teaching classes, Emily formed a passion for writing ethical stories of survivors of trauma in a way that communicates dignity and empowerment. When Emily is not at work, you can find her on the beaches of San Diego catching a wave or drinking a good cup of coffee.

Emily Thome
Grant Writer

Ellen Davis

Development Operations Coordinator

As Development Operations Coordinator, Ellen helps create and manage systems and policies for the Development Team. She loves keeping information current and organized, knowing that it supports our program and empowers farming families around the world. 

Previously, Ellen worked as a Grant Writer at Voices for Children, with AmeriCorps at Habitat for Humanity East Bay, and administered impact evaluation surveys in Guatemala to benefit Heifer International. She has a Bachelor's Degree in International Relations from UC Davis and a Master's Degree in International Development and Nonprofit Management from UC San Diego. Ellen is excited to play a part in an organization that cares deeply for people and the environment. When Ellen is not working, she enjoys spending time with her husband Matt and two young children - Samuel and Lily.

Ellen Davis
Development Operations Coordinator

Burundi

Noé Nizigama

Country Director, Burundi

As a Country Director, Noé believes that leadership based on the love of those with whom you serve empowers each staff member. He is passionate about loving those he serves with and those they serve together. Noé is proud of the grace of God who allowed us, in a period of 5 years, to shift into the impactful Watershed approach. Now, our program in Burundi is on a tremendous step of growth both in quality services and in geographical expansion.

Noé was also a big part of the successful partnership agreement between our programs in Burundi and Hope International Burundi as an outcome of a tangible impact of our ECC material. Noé hopes this small beginning could open more opportunities for partnerships in the future. As part of the implementation of his Masters in Gender Institutions and Societies, Noé has recently conducted research on socio-economic gender relationships within VSLA groups supervised by the Burundi team in the sub-watershed of Nyakazu.

Noé Nizigama
Country Director, Burundi

Emile Icoyavuze

Deputy Country Director, Burundi

As Deputy Country Director, Emile’s role is to ensure the implementation of the program through our three components: Environmental Restoration, Economic Empowerment and Spiritual Renewal. These three components work with the grassroots groups of the watersheds to reduce poverty in rural areas through an integrated program that contributes to holistic transformation of the community. What excites Emile most is to see how the programs utilize these tools to achieve a transformation of human lives.

Before stepping into his role as Deputy Country Director, he was our Economic Empowerment Coordinator. He believes that with our integrated program, the Spiritual Renewal aspect has greatly impacted the behavior of our participants so much so that we have not recorded any cases of theft or misunderstanding. In addition, he is very proud of the progress from income generating activities in the sub-watershed of Mutsindozi, where we are able to see how incomes have increased after only 2 years. Emile has a Master's Degree in Community Based Development, and loves to sing, play the guitar and worship God while doing so.

Emile Icoyavuze
Deputy Country Director, Burundi

Honorine Murorunkwere

Monitoring & Evaluation Manager, Burundi

Honorine is passionate about improving our integrated program quality in our Burundi programs through development of our monitoring and evaluation systems. Through strong logic, organizational decision making processes, and periodic performance tracking, she aims to help poor households located in rural Burundi to change their life standard.

Honorine received a Master’s degree in Project planning and Management, from Moi University in Kenya. She also earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication for development from Light University. She is proud of her part in research studies on maternal health and nutrition, resulting in the publishing of an academic paper in January of 2020. Honorine has over 3 years of professional experience in Monitoring and Evaluation. Through work, and in her free time, she loves to bring praise and worship to God.

Honorine Murorunkwere
Monitoring & Evaluation Manager, Burundi

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Birori Gaparani Dieudonne

Program Manager, D.R. Congo

As the program manager of the D.R. Congo program, Birori works collaboratively with the senior management team to manage and plan for the future of our program. Birori is passionate about serving the rural communities who are voiceless. He is proud to see participants ready to improve and change their financial situation. 

One of Birori’s many accomplishments includes being the first to gather with the team in launching the D.R. Congo program. He’s been a key player in our growth from 1 watershed to 7 watersheds within a short period of time. He has seen testimonies of how communities have broken the cycle of poverty within only two years of work. Birori has a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology. Birori has the determination to bring peaceful cohabitation among the population. He loves traditional food from his country and is also a huge Manchester United football fan.

Birori Gaparani Dieudonne
Program Manager, D.R. Congo

Mathias Muhizi

Spiritual Renewal Supervisor, DR Congo
Mathias Muhizi
Spiritual Renewal Supervisor, DR Congo

Fidel Mukamyi Mutima

Economic Empowerment Supervisor, DR Congo
Fidel Mukamyi Mutima
Economic Empowerment Supervisor, DR Congo

Dominican Republic

Durbel Lora Brito

Country Director, Dominican Republic
Durbel Lora Brito
Country Director, Dominican Republic

Eugenio Marte Doñe

Operations Assistant, Dominican Republic
Eugenio Marte Doñe
Operations Assistant, Dominican Republic

Erika Galicia

Economic Development & Information Director, Dominican Republic
Erika Galicia
Economic Development & Information Director, Dominican Republic

Ethiopia

Getnet Alemayehu Tareke

Pilot Project Manager, Ethiopia
Getnet Alemayehu Tareke
Pilot Project Manager, Ethiopia

Tsigereda Tadesse

Program Support Officer, Ethiopia

As a Program Support Officer in Ethiopia, Tsigereda strives to integrate our three key areas of focus: Environmental restoration, economic empowerment, and spiritual renewal. Through her work, she takes the lead on organization, empowerment, and leadership elements in the programs in Ethiopia.

Before joining our team, Tsigereda earned a Bachelor of Arts in management. She is a committed and passionate member of the team, and is excited to see how the program continues to improve lives in Ethiopia.

Tsigereda Tadesse
Program Support Officer, Ethiopia

Lewtie Tafere

Administrator, Ethiopia
Lewtie Tafere
Administrator, Ethiopia

Haiti

Hidden for security

Mexico

Luis Alberto Castellanos

Executive Director, Mexico

As the Executive Director of our team in Mexico, Luis works to facilitate transformative development processes within the rural community. Luis has served Southeast Mexico for more than 20 years, and continues his passion through promoting a team committed to the mission and vision of the organization.

Luis earned his degree in Business Administration, and has a certification in Professionalization of Organized Civil Society by the National Institute of Social Development (Mexico). Previously, Luis has been a facilitator of community development for missionary training at the training center of the Assemblies of God (Camad). He enjoys reading books, drinking coffee and doesn’t miss an opportunity to crack a joke with his friends and colleagues.

Luis Alberto Castellanos
Executive Director, Mexico

Laura Adriana Sanjuan Gil

Program Coordinator, Mexico

As our Program Coordinator over the regional programs in Mexico, Laura works diligently to make sure all projects are running smoothly. She is passionate about listening and collecting the stories of the people who participate in the projects and the changes they experience in their way of thinking. Laura worked as a collaborator in the construction of a general historical database of our work performance. 

Laura has a degree in Public Accounting, and has experience as a facilitator of personal finance workshops within the community. She also contributed to the establishment of a sewing workshop in a community of Santa María Mixistlán with women from a local church, in the Sierra Norte de Oaxaca. Laura enjoys painting in her free time.

Laura Adriana Sanjuan Gil
Program Coordinator, Mexico

Arbeis González Gómez

Mexico
Arbeis González Gómez
Mexico

Eduardo López Cortés

Project Coordinator, Mexico

Eduardo serves as our Project Coordinator for Mexico. His role involves providing technical support to farmers, by helping to develop knowledge and skills to produce healthy, native plants within the watershed. By coordinating these projects, Eduardo is encouraging his community to improve their living conditions and environment by reforesting degraded land.

Eduardo is an Agricultural Engineer, and has over 35 years of experience in government programs in the environmental and natural resources sector. One of his many accomplishments includes his participation in the state plan to control forest pests and diseases (specifically dendroctonus frontalis) in the Mixteca region of the state of Oaxaca. Eduardo also taught as a professor at the Oaxaca State Forestry Technical school.

Eduardo López Cortés
Project Coordinator, Mexico

Tanzania

Richard David Mhina

Country Director, Tanzania

As Country Director for Tanzania, Richard is responsible for managing our overall operations within Tanzania. He plays a pivotal role in delegating and directing agendas and strategy, setting annual plans, making sure organizational resources are effectively utilized, and communicating with stakeholders. Richard is passionate about helping others improve their lives, and has always been someone who wanted to help people, rather than just helping himself. Working as a country director with us gives him an opportunity to contribute in reversing poverty and restoring a degraded environment. 

Richard earned his Master's Degree in Business Management from Eastern and Southern Africa Management Institute. He also has his Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Economics from Sokoine University. Through his time with us, he has helped grow the program from 1,600 families to 11,100 direct beneficiaries and over 50,000 indirect beneficiaries. Over 11 years, he’s also succeeded in reducing the cost per beneficiary by more than 500%. His passion is to share the knowledge of ecosystem health with people and the importance of organic farming in improved health and fighting hunger. Through his dedicated leadership, it was possible for our Tanzania program to receive the certificate of appreciation from the Ministry of Agriculture for successfully supporting ecological organic agriculture within the country.

Richard David Mhina
Country Director, Tanzania

Tabitha Mkazeni

Field Officer (Agriculture), Tanzania

Through her role, Tabitha provides technical support to farmers through training on sustainable use of agronomic practices. She offers extension support to farmers on the use of agroecology techniques and botanical pesticides to solve problems in the field. Through improving soil, she sees an increase in production and improvement of livelihood.

Tabitha has a Bachelor of Science in Agronomy, and has attended several workshops on organic pesticides. She continues to gain knowledge by attending symposiums on sustainable agriculture and organic banana production. Tabitha is passionate about learning new sustainable farming ideas from farmers in the field. In her free time, she enjoys listening to gospel music.

Tabitha Mkazeni
Field Officer (Agriculture), Tanzania

Charles Richard Maika

Field Officer (Environment), Tanzania

Charles provides practical knowledge to community members on ecological restoration through tree nursery preparation, management, and tree planting. He is passionate about conserving our surrounding environment through organizing our tree-planting campaigns. By involving the participation of community members and local government leaders, Charles has aided in the planting of over 40,000 trees for each planting campaign.

Charles has a Bachelor of Science in Forestry, and has skills in tree seed harvesting, and tree nursery establishment and management. He is also experienced in the areas of  tree improvement techniques such as grafting and budding.

Charles Richard Maika
Field Officer (Environment), Tanzania

Sinyati Ng'ida

Marketing & Evaluation Officer, Tanzania

Sinyati is passionate about listening to narrations from our beneficiaries and developing them into success stories. In her role, she provides technical know-how to the immediate team on new projects through recording, editing and producing videos. She is excited about communicating organizational activities which ensure projects are done efficiently. Sinyati’s work often involves influencing communities to adopt different technologies.

Sinyati has a Bachelor of Arts in Geography and Environmental Studies. She is a people person and enjoys getting the opportunity to learn more about others through her work each day.

Sinyati Ng'ida
Marketing & Evaluation Officer, Tanzania

Thailand

Jumlong Pawkham

Country Director- UHDF, Thailand

Jumlong is responsible for cultivating a space of decision-making with the management team to ensure our work has a positive impact on the community. He has an abundance of practical work experience in sustainable agriculture for over 26 years. Through this, he has impacted his community by giving knowledge to others about sustainable practices that will be passed down through generations. 

Jumlong graduated with a Master’s Degree in Strategy for Development from Rajabhat Chiang Rai University. He is excited about the time he has put into our mission, and loves being an example to his community. Jumlong enjoys spending time with his whole family, and bringing everyone together through fishing.

Jumlong Pawkham
Country Director- UHDF, Thailand

Punyanuch Butrat

Office Manager, Thailand

As our Office Manager, Punyanuch thrives within an environment of honesty, and passion for working to honor God. She is very proud of her work and using our holistic approach to develop the work of God by bringing her fellow human beings together. 

Punyanuch is the Vice President of Ban Huai Mae Na Wang Church in Thailand. She earned her Bachelor's Degree in Faculty/Business Administration and Marketing from Maejo University, Chiang Mai. 

Punyanuch Butrat
Office Manager, Thailand

Prachaya Kwanmaneekan

Watershed Manager, Thailand

Prachaya shows immense care and generosity for those around him in his role as Watershed Manager. His main responsibility involves caring for the watershed team, and making sure activities are carried out in the correct way. 

Prachaya is proud of his accomplishments in fostering the potential of community leaders to present community development plans to their local government. He has a Bachelor’s of Theology and Public Administration, and is excited about using his skills to further our mission within his watershed.

Prachaya Kwanmaneekan
Watershed Manager, Thailand

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