Bud Philbrook, JDSt Paul, MN
Co-founder, President and CEO
Bud co-founded Global Volunteers, chairs the Board of Directors, envisions the organization‘s future, and leads its daily business affairs. He served as Deputy Undersecretary for the US Department of Agriculture in the first Obama administration, as a member of the Minnesota House of Representatives, as Assistant Commissioner for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, and was in private law practice for 12 years focusing on business and government law. Bud has led dozens of Global Volunteers teams over more than three decades, and has traveled to nearly 60 countries and territories. He earned a Juris Doctor degree from Hamline University School of Law, a Master’s in Public Affairs concentrating on international development from the Humphrey School, and a Bachelor’s in Political Science from the University of Minnesota. Bud authored Global Volunteers’ "Philosophy of Service - A Strategy for Development" and the "Essential Services Prospectus". He also wrote "Conclave Conspiracy", a fascinating and entertaining novel about the first lay Pope in 1000 years.
Michele GranSt Paul, MN
Co-founder, Senior Vice President
Michele manages the organization‘s marketing strategy and external messages. She earned a Master’s Degree in Liberal Studies/International Communications at Hamline University, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism at the University of Minnesota. Before joining the staff in 1990, she worked as a public relations consultant, and held communications management positions at various departments in Minnesota State Government, and in non-profit organizations. Michele has led volunteer teams on over 60 Global Volunteers service programs. She serves on the Board of Trustees and the Board of Directors and chairs the board of directors Membership committee.
Volunteer Engagement Manager and Ecuador Country Manager
Maggie manages our service programs in Ecuador and Costa Rica and produces online strategies to engage new volunteers. Maggie earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Global Studies and Spanish from the University of Minnesota, for which she studied development in Costa Rica and Ecuador. A native of Minnesota, Maggie has resided in Quito, Ecuador since her college years. Before joining the Global Volunteers staff, Maggie worked as an English teacher and translator in Ecuador.
Stephen Raja Chinnappan
Volunteer Preparations Manager and Nepal Country Manager
Stephen manages the day-to-day logistics and volunteer engagement of our Nepal service program, and provides service program information to new volunteers on all programs, and responds to their pre-departure questions. He was born and raised in Bangalore, India, and now lives in Porur. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in commerce, and owns a tour business in Chennai. Stephen served as our Country Manager and on-site consultant for our India Service Programs until February 2018.
Senior Volunteer Manager
Since 1994, Julie has responded to prospective and alumni volunteer requests, questions and recommendations, and monitored service program developments. She shares her extensive history with Global Volunteers through recommendations on strategic direction and volunteer relations. Julie has a Bachelor‘s Degree in Media Communications and Marketing, and has worked in specialized reporting, writing, event coordination and public relations positions. She’s served on 25 service programs worldwide, and was named Staff Person of the Year in 2010.
Sammy manages the organization’s financial records, prepares financial reports, and assists in the preparation of quarterly Board of Directors financial reports, year-end audit, and annual corporate budget. She earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting and Finance from Bethel University in Minnesota, and most recently worked as a Direct Sales Representative for ZYIAActive. Before that, she was a Staff Internal Auditor for US Bancorp in Minneapolis.
Senior Volunteer Manager
Diane responds to volunteers’ requests, and manages special projects for our outstanding team of volunteer coordinators. Before joining the staff in 1997, she held executive and management positions in the resort and hospitality industries in Florida and Mississippi. Diane has led 14 teams to Tanzania, India, Vietnam, Italy, Portugal, Poland, Montana, Ghana, South Africa, Greece and Brazil.
Director of Strategic Partnerships
Emily works with our university, corporate and faith-based partners, managing group volunteering and expanding the scope of our collaborations to increase service to all our programs worldwide. Her first experience volunteering in Tanzania with the women and children of Ipalamwa deepened her desire to do even more for communities in need around the world. With her background in holistic health and wellness, she became a Volunteer Team Leader. After successfully leading teams in Montana and West Virginia, she joined the Global Volunteers staff as a Volunteer Coordinator. In 2021, she was promoted to her current position.
Director of Volunteer Recruitment and Domestic Programs
Peter earned a Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations from the University of Minnesota and a Master’s Degree in International Affairs from American University. Before joining Global Volunteers, Peter worked as Director of Interactive Media for The Nancekivell Group, Intranet Manager for Faegre & Benson, LLP, and International Product Manager/Field Communications Specialist for Realty Interactive, Inc. Most recently, Peter dedicated his time to writing and publishing his three novels. He has lived and worked abroad in the Netherlands and in the UK, and served with his family on Global Volunteers’ Cuba Service Program in March 2016 and has since led service programs in Montana and South Dakota. He was named Staff Person of the Month in March 2017 and again in May 2017, and Staff Person of the Year in 2017.
Adam is responsible for web development and management, media design, and in-house video production. Adam also serves as on-site IT systems support for our local offices. Adam has spent over a decade working in technical support and systems management in the print media world. After earning his Bachelor of Science degree in 2006, he began to become more involved with web and visual media, focusing primarily in web development.
Director of Strategic Partnerships
Cindy works with our university, corporate and faith-based partners, managing group volunteering and expanding the scope of our collaborations to increase service to all our programs worldwide. Her career began in the non-profit arts world and continued for over 20 years with the Walt Disney Company as a Senior Entertainment and Operations Leader. Cindy’s experience, including her BA in Theatre & Drama and Dual MA in HR Management & Development informs her approach on client service, collaboration, and the power of story. Additionally, Cindy has in-the-field experience leading 20+ service programs for Global Volunteers.
Tram is responsible for writing and submitting grant proposals to expand Global Volunteers’ Reaching Children’s Potential Demonstration Program, a child-focused, parent-driven program that is dedicated to addressing the root causes of stunting during the first 1000 days of life. She joined Global Volunteers with over ten years of experience in successful grant writing to both private foundations and government funders. In her most recent role, she wrote grants for a leading service provider focused on ending and preventing homelessness in Hawaii.
Manager of International Operations and Italy Country Manager
Giovanni manages Global Volunteers’ service programs in Sicily and provides development support to the Directors of International Development. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Economic Sciences and a Master’s Degree in European Project Management. Before joining Global Volunteers, Giovanni managed international projects for Caritas in Djibouti, Somalia, Jordan, Ecuador and Peru. He also worked as a counselor for social policies for the Municipality of Castelvetrano.
Dimitra "Millie" Pinakoulaki responds to inquiries resulting from website listings, and researches social media opportunities and trends. Millie began assisting her mother, Country Manager Sam Pinakoulaki, as a child on Global Volunteers teams in the early 2000s. She earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Economics and a Master’s in Economic Theory and Policy from the University of Crete. She also recently finished a two-month internship in Istanbul, where she developed a needs assessment for an NGO.
Social Media Manager and Greece Country Manager
Samantha was born and brought up in the south of England and graduated from a London school of performing arts with honors.She spent 10 years traveling the world with various dance groups. Her last group took her to Crete in Greece, where she met her husband of 16 years. They now have five children. Samantha volunteers to help mentally and physically handicapped children in her hometown.
Director of Reaching Children’s Potential Program & General Counsel
Andrew started his Global Volunteers career as a janitor while in high school. He was later promoted to Office Assistant, Administrative Assistant, Program Manager, USA Operations Manager, International Operations Manager, Director of International Operations, Assistant to the CEO, Director of Reaching Children’s Potential Program, and General Counsel over 15 years. Andrew has seven years of post-secondary education including a Bachelor of Arts and a Doctor of Law. He volunteered in China for six weeks immediately following high school graduation; led and served on 13 Global Volunteers service programs; managed volunteer team leaders; managed the final years of the Reaching Children‘s Potential (RCP) pilot program in St. Lucia; currently directs all RCP Programs; and is Global Volunteers’ container garden expert.
Director of Business Operations
Jake develops our overall business strategy, drives revenue growth, coordinates the corporate OKR process, and manages our data analytics turning data into knowledge. Having started with Global Volunteers in April 2002, Jake has held many positions of ever-increasing responsibility. He earned his Bachelors in Business with honors and his Masters in Business Administration from the University of South Florida, and has participated on Global Volunteers programs in Costa Rica, China, Guatemala, Jamaica, Tanzania, Russia, and the US.
Angie is responsible for expanding our fundraising efforts to support existing and future programs around the world. Before joining Global Volunteers, Angie raised funds at increasing levels for nonprofits in the health and community development sectors.
She was also a Peace Corps Volunteer for 27 months in Liberia, West Africa, and has volunteered on short-term programs in India and Honduras. Angie earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Wisconsin with a double major in Communication Studies and Spanish Language, and also serves on the Board of Directors of the Twin Cities Corporate Volunteerism Council.
Director of International Operations
Dorota joined Global Volunteers as a volunteer translator in 1996, and joined the staff in 1997. She has held many positions of ever increasing responsibility, including translator, assistant team leader, Poland team leader, Poland country manager, and associate director of international operation.
As Director of Operations, Dorota manages all aspects of our programs in Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, South America, and the South Pacific. She has a master’s degree in English language linguistics and a degree in TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language). Dorota was honored as Staff Person of the Month in November 2004, September 2006, September 2008, December 2009, October 2010, May 2013, January 2014, April 2017, March 2018, and April 2021. She was Staff Person of the Year in 2000, 2004 and 2013 and Staff Person of the Decade in 2010..
Office and HR Manager
Maya manages our human relations operations in addition to front desk operations, including all incoming communications with the public and fields questions for all departments in additional to handling staff office needs and building maintenance. Before joining Global Volunteers, she was a caregiver/life engagement coach at a senior living facility in Minnesota and a “Working Holiday Maker” in Australia - tending to the public, assisting housekeeping and caring for farm animals. She also was an Americorps volunteer and provided social and recreational programs for kids and adults with disabilities at Reach for Resources, Inc. in Minnesota. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in Global Leadership and Advocacy Studies.
Manager of International Operations
Emily conducts research and data analyses for Global Volunteers’ Reaching Children’s Potential Program. Formerly a Research Assistant at Texas A&M University and Programs Intern with the Inter-American Foundation, Emily’s research and analysis interests include food security, sustainability, grassroots development, and humanitarian assistance. She has a BS in International and Comparative Politics and a MA in International Development and Economic Policy.
Tanzania Country Director
Nayman leads the expansion of the RCP program in Tanzania, is the lead manager in the field and is a point person for fundraising initiatives. Nayman has a Master’s of Science in Development Policy and was the General Secretary for the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania (ELCT) Iringa Diocese for 14 years.
Tanzania RCP Mental Health Educator and Caregiver
Regina works with volunteers and local mothers on strategies to provide the 12 Essential Services through our Tanzania Reaching Children’s Potential (RCP) Demonstration Project. Raised in the Iringa District, she now lives with her family in the village of Peramiho, where she graduated from the Secondary School for girls. Regina then earned a degree in Community Development from the University of Tumaini in Iringa. She previously was a bank officer in Tabora.
Anna Victor Mwenda
Ipalamwa General Clinic Manager
Anna Victor Mwenda was born, raised and educated in Iringa. She earned a certificate in records management from Tanzania Public Service College and has trained with the Community Bible Study (CBS) to obtain a certificate to teach children and youth. Before joining Global Volunteers, Anna was an insurer with Prighose Insurance Agency and also worked for the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Human Settlement Development as a record manager.
St. Lucia Country Manager
Chemida handles the day-to-day logistics and volunteer management of The St. Lucia Project. Formerly teacher and acting principal at Anse la Raye Primary School, Chemida has lent support to volunteer teams since Global Volunteers’ partnership in Anse la Raye began in 2012. Born and raised in St. Lucia, Chemida has dedicated over 20 years to educating the children of Anse la Raye. She received her associate degree in Teacher Education and Education Administration from Sir Arthur Lewis Community College in St. Lucia. In 2011, she graduated magna cum laude from New York City College of Technology, with a Bachelor’s degree in Teachers Technology Education.
Jorge Sánchez Prieto
Peru RCP Manager
Jorge, who was born in Colombia, grew up at Sagrada Familia in Ventanilla, Peru and knew from an early age he wanted to learn English. In 2016, he graduated from the Instituto de Educación Superior Tecnológico Privado in Lima as an English teacher. Shortly thereafter, he moved back to Sagrada Familia to teach English to children who are growing up in the same circumstances as he did as a child. As Peru Reaching Children‘s Potential Program Manager, he manages the outreach to impoverished families in the barrios of Ventanilla to obtain Global Volunteers’ RCP services.
Cook Islands Country Manager
Debi was born and raised in New Zealand and moved to the Cook Islands with her family in 2002 so their children would be exposed to their Cook Islands heritage. Before joining Global Volunteers staff, she worked for the Cook Islands Ministry of Education as the Health and Physical Well-being curriculum developer. She is a health and physical education lecturer for the University of Waikato, and is currently completing her doctorate on youth sexuality.
Cook Islands Country Manager
James is a New Zealand-born Cook Islander, and leads Global Volunteers service programs year around. He has worked at both elementary and high school levels as a Physical Education teacher and teacher of Maori. He has also contracted to the New Zealand Ministry of Education to develop Maori resources, and as a Pacific Island Education Advisor.
Tanzania Technology Manager/RCP Program Coordinator
Husna Waziri studied community development at college with a goal to become a social worker. She especially likes working with her community and special needs kids. Previous experiences include Sales Consultant at Bayport Financial Services and Executive Director of the Center Vote for Dar es Salaam.
Loinad Samweli Chusi
Tanzania Security Guard
Leonard Samweli Chusi was born in Ipalamwa village in Iringa region. He took his secondary education in Fikano primary school in Ipalamwa village. Before joining Global Volunteers, he was a shop keeper.
Tanzania RCP Co-op Coordinator
Debora was born and lives in Iringa. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from St. Augustine University of Tanzania (SAUT) in Mwanza region. Before joining Global Volunteers, she taught in Isaka Secondary School in Kahama-Shinyanga region, and she was engaged in a small entrepreneurship in local fabric (Batiki) making.
Ukwega Primary School Cook
Jali is a cook iat Ukwega Primary School. She was born and raised in Ukwega Village and graduated standard 7 from the school where she now works preparing Rise Against Hunger fortified meals provided by Global Volunteers. Before working with Global Volunteers, she worked in a restaurant in Dar-es-Salaam.
Amilia Telaka Kikoti
Tanzania RCP Associate Caregiver
Amilia was born and raised in Ipalamwa and graduated from secondary school there. Before joining Global Volunteers, Amilia was a Matron of primary school students at Star International Primary School in Iringa.
Veronica Sagamadunda Kiwola
Ipalamwa General Clinic Assistant Manager
Veronica Sagamadunda Kiwola was born and raised in Ipalamwa village. She earned the certificate of nursing from Ruaha Emergency Care and Home Nursing school for two years and worked as a nursing attendant at Mission clinic for five years in St. Charles Borromeo.
Tanzania RCP Center Housekeeper
Berifa Makongwa was born and raised in Ipalamwa where she completed her primary school education. Berifa was a farmer before joining Global Volunteers.
Mwinyi Suleimani Matimbwi
Tanzania RCP Driver
Mwinyi is an experienced driver for the RCP Program, based in Iringa. He learned driving and auto mechanics at the Mufindi Vocational Training Center in Iringa. Before joining Global Volunteers, Mwinyi worked in the Irigna Regional Transportation Office and aslo in drove Amazon trucks in Iringa.
Tanzania RCP Caregiver
Fatina was born and lives in Iringa. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Dodoma, and was a social worker with PAMOJA Leo Organization for children living in hardship in the Tanga Region before joining Global Volunteers. She’s also volunteered as Community Development Officer in the Igumbilo Executive Ward of the Iringa Region.
Sifuni G. Mdegela
Tanzania RCP Caregiver
Sifuni grew up in the village of Ipalamwa, our Tanzania Reaching Children’s Potential (RCP) Demonstration Program site. This is where she works with Global Volunteers teams and local mothers and children. She attended the Secondary School in Pomerini, Global Volunteer’s first community work site. She now lives with her family in the town of Iringa. She earned her degree in Community Development from Tumaini University in Iringa.
Ituja Daniel Michael
Tanzania EarthBox Coordinator
Ituja was born and raised in the Dodoma Region and worked on various farms there four years before joining the Tanzania RCP Program. He maintains and harvests Global Volunteers‘ model EarthBoxes, trains families on their use, helps install EarthBoxes at new RCP families’ homes and researches improvements to container gardening. He also assists with the installation of hand-washing stations and fuel-efficient stoves.
Denis Pilion Mkemwa
Tanzania Maintenance Coordinator
Denis Pilion Mkemwa was born and raised in Iringa-Ipalamwa. He was educated in Ipalamwa. He earned a level one certificate in Plumbing from VETA Iringa. Before joining Global Volunteers, Denis worked with ASAS Iringa as plumber.
Tanzania RCP Team Leader
Given leads Global Volunteers teams of volunteers in Tanzania; managing their day-to-day work projects and relationships with our community partners. She was born in Iringa and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Family and Consumer Studies from Sokoine University of Agriculture in Morogoro. Before joining Global Volunteers, she worked as a nutritionist on the Bunda Town Council in the Mara Region inspiring behavioral change in the communities by promoting better health and nutrition practices in the community.
Joseph manages the finances of the RCP Program in Tanzania. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree of Science in Accounting and Finance from the University of Iringa. Before joining Global Volunteers, he worked with the Institute of Education and Development as Chief Accountant, and as an accountant for Tatanca Safari, and Tours in Iringa and Agakhan Health Centre.
Tanzania RCP Caregiver
Ashura lives in Iringa. She competed her Bachelor’s Degree in Community Development with a concentration in Participatory Project Planning and Management from Tengeru Institute of Community Development (CDTI) in Arusha. Before joining Global Volunteers, Ashura worked with Iringa Municipal Council (at Kihesa ward) as Assistant Community Development Officer.
Tanzania RCP Driver
Rashid Mpumu was born and raised in the Morogoro Region, where he graduated primary school. Before joining Global Volunteers, he drove trucks qne public buses commercially.
Tanzania RCP Caregiver
Happy was born in Kibaha and lives in Dar es Salaam. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Systems Management from Mzumbe University. Before joining Global Volunteers on the Tanzania RCP Program, Happy worked as a sales representative for TECH Africa Investment Company in Dar es Salaam.
Herman L. Mtengela
Ipalamwa General Clinic Receptionist
Herman L. Mtengela was born and raised in Ipalamwa village, Iringa, Tanzania. He earned a certificate of laboratory technology from Mafinga Huruma Medical Training Center in Iringa, Tanzania. Herman was working at Cardinal Rugambwa Hospital in Dar es Salaam in clinical laboratory activities such as sample collection, performing lab tests of patients, and quality control of test for two years.
Irene Festo Mtengela
Ipalamwa Primary School Cook
Irene is a cook at Ipalamwa Primary School. She was born and raised in Ipalamwa and her education was at Fikano Primary school. Until working for Global Volunteers, she was a farmer in her family’s fields.
Thekla Bernard Mushi
Tanzania RCP Caregiver Supervisor
Thekla was born in Kilimanjaro and lives in Iringa. She earned a Bachelor‘s Degree in Population and Development Planning from the Institute of Rural and Development Planning (IRDP) – Dodoma. Before joining Global Volunteers’ RCP Program, Thekla worked as Evaluation Assistant in tele-mentoring to build health worker capacity in HIV care and treatment at ICAP-Tanzania, in the Dar-es-Salaam Region.
Tanzania RCP Associate Caregiver
Goem Nikodemu Mlengela
Tanzania Security Guard
Goem Nikodemu Mlengela was born, raised, and educated in Ipalamwa village in Iringa region. Goem took his primary education in Fikano Primary school in Ipalamwa. Before joining Global Volunteers, he worked as security in Mtwivila construction that was dealing with construction of road.
Huruma James Nyalusi
Tanzania RCP Driver
Huruma was born in Pomerini, Kilolo and is licensed in driving motor vehicles type A, D, E and G in Tanzania. Before joining Global Volunteers, he was a professional driver in Dar es Salaam with a commercial transportation company.
Makungu Primary School Cook
Zakina is a cook at Makungu Primary School. She was born and raised in Makungu Village, where she attended school through standard 7. Before working for Global Volunteers, she worked in a private shop in the neighboring village of Mafinga.
Josephat Ezekia Nyenza
Tanzania Security Guard
Josephat Ezekia Nyenza was born and raised in Ipalamwa. He took his primary education in Fikano Primary School. Before joining Global Volunteers, Josephat was working in Dar es salaam as a shop security.
Peru RCP Caregiver
Bea joined Global Volunteers as our first Peru RCP Program Caregiver. She is a clinical psychologist with a passion for early childhood education. She earned a degree in Clinical Psychology from Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas (UPC) in Lima. Prior to joining Global Volunteers, Bea worked as a school psychologist. She also has experience conducting workshops for parents on the importance of the first 1,000 days and psychological development of the child during this time.
Diego Acosta Ruiz
Peru Team Leader
Diego began working for Global Volunteers as a translator in 2019 at the same time he ran his own audio production company. He studied Administration and Entrepreneurship Management at Universidad Peruana de Ciencias Aplicadas (UPC) in Lima and learned Audio Engineering at the School of Audio Engineering – SAE Institute in Madrid and Audio Producing at Middlesex University in London.
Buddhi Man Shrestha
Nepal Country Manager Assistant
Buddhi Man grew up in Tanahun, East Nepal. In 2001, he moved to Kathmandu after completing his Bachelor of Business Studies (BBS). In 2012, he started Fresh Fire Church in Maharajgunj, Chakrapath, Kathmandu and in 2016, together with his wife Madhu, they opened Papa’s House Children’s Home where they care for five orphaned boys.
Tanzania Lead Cook
Nesia, known affectionately as Mama Tony, prepares nutritious and tasty meals for volunteers at the RCP Center. She has been a member of Global Volunteers staff in Tanzania since 1992. Nesia and her family reside in Pommern, which is also in the Iringa region.
Tanzania RCP Caregiver
Tausi was born and lives in the Mbeya –Rungwe District. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Family and Consumer Studies from Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA). Before joining Global Volunteers, Tausi was a nutritional officer volunteer at the Integrated Rural Development Organization (IRDO) Feed the Future program in the Rungwe District.
Retired Engineer - Lockheed Martin
Barbara has led Global Volunteers teams in Montana, South Dakota and Texas and served with the first Global Volunteer Team in Katmandu, Nepal in 2019. Barbara received her Master’s Degree in Engineering from the University of Colorado and Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Notre Dame University. Barbara has developed, managed and delivered spacecraft and missile defense systems. She also owned her own business for 15 years providing consulting services resulting in 23 successful product launches and operational efficiencies to small businesses and fortune 500 companies across diverse markets including medical devices, electronics, financial services, telecommunications and aerospace. Barbara is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Alternative Medicine.
Dr. Carol Conzelman
Cultural Anthropologist at the University of Colorado at Boulder
After serving with Global Volunteers for the first time in Costa Rica in 1994, Carol was so impressed with the Philosophy of Service that she completed Team Leader Training the next summer. Since then, she has lead volunteer teams on service programs in Jamaica, Italy, Ecuador, Tanzania, and Ireland and Cuba. She also serves on the Global Volunteers Board of Directors. Carol teaches cultural anthropology at the University of Colorado at Boulder, serves as the Associate Director of the Global Studies Academic Program, and brings students to Bolivia each summer for a Study Abroad course.
Retired Energy Engineer
Phil first served in 2017 on Global Volunteers’ Montana Service Program. Phil recently retired from a career in energy engineering and construction and wanted to re-focus his energies on accomplishing a little good thru Global Volunteers. He completed Team Leader training late in 2017 and will soon lead teams in West Virginia as well as Montana. Phil currently lives outside of Chicago in the Dunes National Lakeshore area of Northwest Indiana. He also volunteers at Chicago’s Field Museum of Natural History leading public tours of the museums anthropology collections and exhibits.
Interior Design Entrepreneur
Celida is passionate about volunteering internationally, and for several organizations in Central Florida.She served on her first Global Volunteers program in Cuba in 2017. She currently serves as a project leader with Hands On Orlando. Celida has a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts specializing in Interior Design, and owns her own business. She previously worked at Disney for 15 years in a variety of guest service, professional, and operational roles. She loves to travel and is a fluent Spanish speaker.
Retired School Superintendent
Mike first served with Global Volunteers in Montana in 2016, and was trained as a volunteer team leader four months later. He earned an MA degree in School Administration and worked as a special education teacher, a director of special services and an elementary school principal. For the past 12 years Mike has been the superintendent of schools in Southampton, New Jersey and was recently named Superintendent of Schools for Burlington County in 2017.
Restaurant Owner and Business Consultant
Amy‘s first service program in Malungeni, South Africa cemented her commitment to Global Volunteers: "To have a front row seat in the life of the people of Malungeni was a priviledge! How else would you, in the first few hours in South Africa, be sitting in someone’s house, sharing a cold beverage with a family that was so pleased to see you that they couldn‘t stop smiling, or talking about their country!" Since then, she’s completed team leader training and led a team to Costa Rica in 2012. Amy was born and raised in Minneapolis, MN. She owns two restaurants and works as a business consultant for a local non-profit - teaching business skills to entrepreneurs. She underwrites microloans and works alongside her clients to help ensure their success.
Clinical Social Worker
Julie began leading Global Volunteers teams in 2007 after serving on two U.S. service programs. Since then, she‘s led teams in Montana, West Virginia, St. Lucia and Vietnam. Julie’s a licensed clinical social worker and currently works as the only social worker for a large urban PA school district. She is the mother of three daughters and enjoys traveling, the outdoors and yoga. She also serves as the Board President of her county’s Department of Behavioral Health/Developmental Disabilities, is a board member of the Montgomery Child Advocacy Project, and is a Youth Aid Panel Volunteer.
Dr. LaVerne Lewis
Community College Instructor
LaVerne"s first Global Volunteers service program was in Tanzania in 2012. She followed that with service in China in 2014 and Greece in 2018. She earned her Doctorate in Education from Northcentral University, a Master‘s Degree in Education from Colorado State University, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting and Taxation from SUNY. She’s owned a tax and accounting business for almost 35 years, and retired in 2014 from working as a Sheriff’s Deputy in Multnomah County after 18 years. She currently teaches accounting/taxation and criminal justice administration at Mt. Hood Community College in Portland, Oregon.
Dr. Mindy Lull
Associate Pharmacy Professor - St. John Fisher College
Mindy served on her first service program with Global Volunteers in 2014. She first travelled with a group of pharmacy students to the Blackfeet Reservation in Montana, and has brought additional groups of students on Global Volunteers trips every year since — participating on programs in Peru, Tanzania, and on additional programs to the Blackfeet Reservation. Mindy is an Associate Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the Wegmans School of Pharmacy, St. John Fisher College in Rochester, NY where she focuses on Global Health education and outreach.
Retired Ordained Minister
Louise served in Cuba in 2015, immediately followed by an India program and volunteer team leader training. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in elementary education from Hiram College and a Master of Divinity Degree from Trinity Lutheran Seminary. She taught in parochial and public schools for 8 years, and has served as an ordained minister in long term care, campus and parish ministry for almost 25 years. She retired in the summer of 2017 to devote her time to her four grandchildren and more Global Volunteers service programs as well as her beloved husband and dog.
Elementary School Teacher
Lucy Heegaard is a licensed teacher who first served in 2015 with her son on Global Volunteers’ St. Lucia Service Program. In October 2017 she served in Seidlce, Poland. In Feb. 2018 she served in Ciego de Ávila, Cuba. Lucy loves the service element of Global Volunteers. She lived in Spain for 2 years and has been fortunate to travel extensively on all continents except Antarctica. Two of her favorite hobbies are playing tennis and photography.
Kathy Mace Skinner
Retired Lawyer and Magistrate
Kathy first joined a Global Volunteers service program in Vietnam in 1995, and completed team leader training in Mississippi shortly thereafter. This, and a serious interest in developing cultures solidified her commitment to peace building through Global Volunteers. She has since lead over 20 teams worldwide, and has participated internationally with Rotary International. Kathy’s career has spanned positions as a teacher, mediator, lawyer and magistrate – the latter from which she recently retired. She divides her time living on an acreage in Iowa and a beach house in Mexico.
Retired Business Owner and Volunteer Portugal Country Manager
Joe first joined a Global Volunteers service program to Guatemala in 1991. He completed Global Volunteers Team Leader Training in 1993, and has since led more than 50 teams worldwide. Joe earned an MBA and built a highly successful ground water and water purification business. He sold the company and now serves as General Manager so he can spend more time with two beautiful grandchildren, volunteer as an ESL tutor, and continue as a “big brother” to the same “little brother” he’s had for 20 years with "Big Brothers, Big Sisters."
Retired Certified Health Professional
Phyllis learned about Global Volunteers on the NBC Today Show in 2003, and immediately became entranced with our English teaching program in southern rural Italy. She volunteered that same year, and soon after completed Global Volunteers‘ Team Leader Training. She has since led 15 teams to Italy as well as to China, Costa Rica, Montana, Portugal, and South Africa. Phyllis holds a Master’s degree in Health Professions Education, and is a certified health professional, practicing for over 25 years in radiation oncology. She resides in Scottsdale, Arizona with her husband, William. Her favorite place to visit is Italy!
Karen first served with Global Volunteers at the Blackfeet Reservation in Montana. She has since served in Cuba, Ecuador, Romania, Vietnam, and West Virginia. Karen has an MA in Cultural Anthropology and an MS in Education. She currently lives in New York City where she enjoys working for an international philosophical organization. In addition to volunteering with Global Volunteers, Karen also serves as a Team Lead with New York Cares, in NYC, where she now lives. She serves at and supports numerous food pantries and shelters throughout the city. In her free time, enjoys leading hikes through the beautiful Catskills with the Appalachian Mountain Club.