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Michel Gabaudan, President | Read more about Michel
Kendra Davis, Vice President for Philanthropy
Solomon David, Director of Finance
Andrea Lari, Director of Programs
Dara McLeod, Director of Communications
Steven Most, Director of Operations
Rowena Averia, Senior Accountant
Matthew Bechtel, Database Administrator
Michael Boyce, Press and Information Officer
Garrett Bradford, Online Outreach Associate
Caelin Briggs, Advocate
Michelle Brown, Senior Advocate & United Nations Representative
Dawn T. Calabia, Resident Fellow
Sushetha Gopallawa, Southeast Asia Fellow
Daryl Grisgraber, Senior Advocate
Rosa Guerrero, Office Manager
Marc Hanson, Government Relations Senior Advocate
Marcy Hersh, Senior Advocate
Sarnata Reynolds, Statelessness Program Manager
Melanie Teff, Senior Advocate & European Representative
Alice Thomas, Climate Displacement Program Manager
Davina Wadley, Climate Displacement Program Non-Resident Fellow
Mark Yarnell, Advocate
Lionel Rosenblatt, President Emeritus
Ken Bacon (1944-2009), President of Refugees International from 2001 - 2009
MATTHEW BECHTEL, DATABASE ADMINISTRATOR
Matthew Bechtel joined Refugees International in September of 2010. As RI’s Database Administrator, he processes, cleans, and analyzes donation data to inform future campaigns, improve the general development strategy, and provide timely service to RI’s donors. Before coming to RI, Matthew served for a year in the Americorps VISTA program at the Crispus Attucks Association of York, PA as the Community Outreach Coordinator. Mr. Bechtel holds a B.A. in Anthropology and Religion from Gettysburg College.
MICHAEL BOYCE, PRESS AND INFORMATION OFFICER
Michael Boyce joined Refugees International in October 2011. As press and information officer, he is responsible for strengthening the organization's media presence across multiple platforms. He also serves as coordinator of the Partnership for Effective Peacekeeping, a non-partisan working group on peace operations co-chaired by RI. Previously, Mr. Boyce worked as a copy editor and staff writer at the Jakarta Globe, Indonesia's leading English-language daily. He has also completed internships with the International Crisis Group and the U.S. Department of State, for which he served at the American Embassy in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Mr. Boyce holds a Master's degree in Global Governance & Diplomacy from the University of Oxford and a Bachelor's degree from Brown University.
GARRETT BRADFORD, ONLINE OUTREACH ASSOCIATE
Garrett Bradford joined Refugees International in January 2011 and is responsible for online outreach and fundraising strategies. Prior to coming to RI, Mr. Bradford coordinated social media and online activities at EMBARQ, The World Resources Institute Center for Sustainable Transport, and was a regular contributor to the organization’s blog, TheCityFix.com. He also served for over two years in Chile and Brazil as the communications and media coordinator for multiple local churches. Mr. Bradford holds a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from Texas A&M University and speaks Spanish and Portuguese.
CAELIN BRIGGS, ADVOCATE
Caelin Briggs joined Refugees International as an Advocate in September 2012. Prior to starting with RI, Caelin worked in refugee resettlement in Sub-Saharan Africa and traveled across the region to prepare cases for refugees applying to resettle to the United States. Caelin spent much of her time in this position advocating for greater protection awareness in the U.S. resettlement process. Before moving to Africa, Caelin worked with urban Iraqi refugees in Amman, Jordan, and in 2010 managed two early recovery programs in post-earthquake Haiti. Caelin has worked with displaced populations in over ten countries in Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America/Caribbean, and specializes in protection mainstreaming and vulnerability reduction. Caelin holds a Master’s degree in Development and Emergency Practice from Oxford Brookes University.
MICHELLE BROWN, SENIOR ADVOCATE & UNITED NATIONS REPRESENTATIVE
Michelle Brown joined Refugees International in 2000 and currently represents the organization at the United Nations. She has conducted field assessments in the Horn of Africa, West Africa, Latin America and South Asia. On her more than 20 missions in the past six years, Ms. Brown has focused her advocacy on issues such as protection of internally displaced people and refugees, reintegration assistance in post-conflict situations, and children affected by armed conflict. Before joining RI, she worked for three years as an English teacher in Japan. Ms. Brown also worked in South Asia with various women’s health organizations and with women’s micro-enterprise organizations in Cambodia. She has a Master’s degree in International Development Studies from George Washington University.
DAWN T. CALABIA, RESIDENT FELLOW
Dawn T. Calabia is a resident fellow. Associated with RI since 2004 she has participated in missions to Afghanistan, Burma, Cote d’Ivoire, Iraq, Kyrgyzstan, Jordan, Senegal, Syria, Thailand and Uzbekistan. In 2010 with Roberta Cohen she co-authored a Brookings’ report on ways to improve US policy and programs for internally displaced persons. Previously, she served ten years in the United Nations as deputy director for the UN’s Washington Information Office and as senior external relations officer for UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). Earlier Dawn was director of refugee policy and development at the US Catholic Conference and spent ten years as staff to the House of Representatives’ Foreign Affairs Committee and as an aide to a NY representative. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, treasurer of the Women’s Foreign Policy Group, and a founder and Commissioner of the Women’s Refugee Commission. Dawn has a Masters in Social Service from Fordham University and a BA from St. John’s University of New York. In 1995 she was honored by President Clinton for her work on behalf of refugee women and children.
SUSHETHA GOPALLAWA, SOUTHEAST ASIA FELLOW
Sushetha Gopallawa began her work as a fellow with Refugees International in January 2012. She is currently completing a Master of Laws in Law & Government. Ms. Gopallawa previously worked as an Advocacy Director at the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice & Human Rights (RFK Center), where she implemented and managed programs to support the work of RFK human rights partners from Africa, Asia, the Middle East and North America, as well as China and Vietnam. Prior to working for the RFK Center, Ms. Gopallawa served at The World Bank Legal Vice-Presidency, the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka including its Mission to the United Nations in New York and the Embassy to the USA. While at the ministry, Ms. Gopallawa negotiated the South Asian Association for Regional Corporation (SAARC) Convention on Preventing and Combating Trafficking of Women and Children for Prostitution, and agreements to repatriate failed asylum seekers from Italy, Switzerland, The Netherlands, and The United Kingdom. She has also worked with women’s organizations in Sri Lanka to support the rights of refugee and internally displaced populations. Ms. Gopallawa has a Master of Laws degree in International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law from the American University Washington College of Law.
DARYL GRISGRABER, SENIOR ADVOCATE
Prior to joining RI, Daryl worked at a local NGO in Cairo where she managed projects providing refugees with legal assistance and psychosocial services. She also spent six years at Amnesty International USA where she handled several aspects of the organization’s refugee program including legal support to asylum seekers, advocacy on domestic and international refugee policy, and crisis response development. Earlier, Daryl was the executive director of a small research-oriented NGO that provided services to refugees and asylum seekers in detention in the United States. She has a master’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin.
MARC HANSON, GOVERNMENT RELATIONS SENIOR ADVOCATE
Marc Hanson joined Refugees International in June 2011 and is responsible for advancing RI’s advocacy agenda with the U.S. government. Mr. Hanson covered foreign policy, economics, budget and tax policy as legislative assistant with Congressman Sam Farr (CA - Monterey). While with the Farr office he worked on the State, Foreign Operations and Financial Services appropriations bills. Previously, he was community-political organizer with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) where he led a legislative campaign to expand the labor rights of low-wage home healthcare workers. Mr. Hanson, a onetime bookseller at Kramerbooks, was a Peace Corps volunteer in Honduras, a volunteer with Servicio Paz y Justicia in Argentina, conducted field research on local institutions in Trinidad & Tobago and observed elections in Azerbaijan and El Salvador. He has a degree from Santa Clara University in Political Science and Philosophy and Master of Arts in Urban Planning from the University of California, Los Angeles.
MARCY HERSH, SENIOR ADVOCATE
Marcy Hersh joined Refugees International in July 2012 as a Senior Advocate focusing on women and children’s rights. Prior to joining RI, Marcy worked with UN agencies, international and local NGOs, leading programming for gender equality, women’s empowerment, and gender-based violence prevention and response. She has worked in several humanitarian contexts, including in South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Niger, Haiti, Uganda, and Afghanistan. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Union College and a Master of International Affairs degree from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.
SARNATA REYNOLDS, STATELESSNESS PROGRAM MANAGER
Sarnata Reynolds joined Refugees International in October 2011 as the Program Manager for Statelessness. She serves as the principal liaison and focal point for RI with the UN, the US government and focus countries on this issue. Sarnata is also an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center where she teaches a seminar on statelessness, and taught a human rights fact-finding course in 2011. Sarnata is a member of the National Lawyers Committee for Human Rights’ Mexico Advisory Team, she served as the Vice-Chair of Refugee Council USA and she chaired the Iraqi Refugee Working Group. Sarnata has appeared before Congress many times to discuss a variety of issues including the indefinite detention of stateless children in the United States before the Human Rights and Children’s Caucuses. Prior to joining RI, Sarnata worked as the Advocacy and Policy Director for Refugee and Migrants’ Rights at Amnesty International USA. In this position she promoted the enforcement of international human rights standards pertaining to refugees, asylum seekers, the stateless, migrants, and other uprooted people. Sarnata has also litigated asylum and deportation defense cases before the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, United States District Courts and Executive Office for Immigration Review. She has published multiple articles on international human rights and the intersection of US constitutional and immigration law. Sarnata completed her Women’s Studies degree magna cum laude at the University of Minnesota and the University of Ulster in Belfast, Northern Ireland. She completed her law degree at the University of Minnesota, and studied European Union law at University College Dublin.
MELANIE TEFF, SENIOR ADVOCATE & EUROPEAN REPRESENTATIVE
Melanie Teff began her work as an Advocate with Refugees International in July 2007. Since joining RI, she has conducted missions to Liberia to assess the humanitarian needs of returnees, to northern Uganda to assess the needs of internally-displaced people and returnees, to the Dominican Republic focusing on statelessness of people of Haitian origin, to northern Iraq and Syria on the situation of displaced Iraqi women, to Colombia on the situation of internally displaced women, and four missions to Sudan, on the situation of returnees to southern Sudan and on humanitarian action in Darfur. Ms. Teff’s international experience includes two years in the Solomon Islands with VSO working as legal advisor to a local nongovernmental organization combating domestic violence and child abuse. She then spent three years as a human rights advocacy trainer in the Dominican Republic, where her focus was on statelessness among the Haitian migrant and refugee communities. Ms. Teff later established and coordinated the international advocacy and policy office for Jesuit Refugee Service in Rome, where she worked between 2003 and 2006. This position involved frequent travel to overseas offices of Jesuit Refugee Service and representing the agency’s advocacy positions in Geneva to UNHCR. She has also co-coordinated the International Coalition on the Detention of Refugees, Asylum Seekers and Migrants. Prior to getting involved with international work, she spent eight years as a lawyer in England with a focus on child rights, child abuse, and legal cases involving family law. Ms. Teff has a Master of Laws degree in International Human Rights Law from the University of Essex. She is a British citizen and is fluent in Spanish.
ALICE THOMAS, CLIMATE DISPLACEMENT PROGRAM MANAGER
Alice joined Refugees International in May 2010 as the Climate Displacement Program Manager. Alice previously worked as a staff attorney in the international program at Earthjustice (formerly the Sierra Club Legal Defense Fund) where she implemented programs designed to defend and seek redress for communities from the impacts of pollution and climate change. Prior to working for Earthjustice, Alice served as Deputy Director of the American Bar Association’s Asia Law Initiative where she was responsible for overall management and implementation of ABA's technical legal assistance programs in Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Mongolia, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam. She has also worked in Uzbekistan and Bosnia on issues related to environmental good governance and public participation in environmental decision-making. She began her career in the litigation practice groups at Dewey Ballantine and Arnold & Porter. Alice has a law degree from the University of Wisconsin Law School and a Bachelor’s degree in History from Princeton University.
DAVINA WADLEY, CLIMATE DISPLACEMENT PROGRAM NON-RESIDENT FELLOW
Davina Wadley joined Refugees International as a fellow in April 2012. Before coming to RI, Davina worked as a human rights attorney in Australia for four years at Legal Aid Queensland and Boe Lawyers. Davina has also worked as a mediator with separated families in rural Queensland, as a project worker with at-risk indigenous youth in the remote indigenous community of Wongatha Wonganara in Western Australia, and as a project worker with at-risk indigenous youth at the Australian Red Cross in Brisbane. Davina is an Australian citizen and has been involved in various volunteer projects which have supported refugee resettlement in Brisbane. She holds a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Queensland, Australia.
MARK YARNELL, ADVOCATE
Mark joined Refugees International in December 2011 as Advocate for the Horn of Africa. Since then, he has led field assessments to Somalia, Kenya, and Ethiopia, as well as conducted research in Burkina Faso and Niger. Mark has testified before the US Congress Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission and been a guest on BBC/PRI’s The World and CBC’s As It Happens, among other news programs. Prior to joining RI, Mark was a Stimson Center Congressional Fellow, based in the office of Senator Richard Lugar. He has worked in the Democratic Republic of Congo as a food security consultant for Oxfam and as a field officer with Merlin, a medical relief organization. Additionally, he was as a program associate at the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs and a senior program associate at the Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office. Mark earned a Master of Science in Foreign Service degree from Georgetown University and was a teaching assistant to former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.