Rachel Zelon has been working in the field of humanitarian assistance and development for over three decades. Rachel was a founding member of HRI in 2009. Her energies have been focused on child protection, promoting the rights of children, and working towards a world where children’s rights include having access to all basic needs. Her leadership has resulted in the promotion of expanded access to critical nutrition, clean water, decent sanitation, health care, and education for vulnerable children living in extreme poverty. In recent years, the scope of her work has expanded to include the fight against child trafficking into institutionalized care in Haiti. Rachel has her Masters Degree in Social Work.
Steve Whetstone has dedicated a nearly 40 year career to serving low income and vulnerable families through nonprofits. He began working with small businesses to create jobs for low income households and then transitioned to working in the nonprofit sector, focusing on nonprofit accounting, legal, board development, strategic planning, logistics & distribution, partner development, special projects, disaster response, communications, media, fundraising, program development and more. Steve has now begun to share a lifetime of experience and knowledge with non-profits, building their capacity to operate more effectively through strategic planning, board development, budgeting and program alignment.
Jennifer has worked in international development and organization management since 2003. She is regarded for growing nonprofits through partner development, fundraising, grant and foundation partnerships, communications, volunteer and internship management, and more. She has lead group mission teams for nearly 15 years. She's also improved and expanded development projects and monitoring and evaluation in the field. She's worked with local and federal law enforcement and other agencies to identify and serve victims of child trafficking and sex trafficking in the U.S. and abroad and is credited for opening a successful rehabilitation home.
Ken has been developing and directing international development projects since 1997. For ten years, he worked with ICMC designing and developing projects in South Asia, West and Central Africa, the Middle East and the Balkans. Much of his work focused on creating projects that respond to refugee and forced migration crises caused by war or internal political strife. Ken designed and directed several Business Development and Micro-Finance projects, as well as the first comprehensive anti-trafficking project in the Balkans. He served as Director of Global Operations in the Geneva Headquarters, the Chairperson for a microfinance institution in Kosovo, and Team Leader for the Balkan Investment Fund. He finalized a formal MOU between Fayetteville, AR and Korce, Albania for the transfer of agriculture technologies and agri-business development. Ken received his Jurist Doctorate in 1993.
Jodel Pierre is a Haitian Senior Development Leader with more than a decade of diverse experience in the development sector working with NGOs, local organizations as well as government entities. Jodel brings to HRI a strong passion, vision, and breadth of knowledge pertaining to local and international development work. He has special expertise in the design and implementation of Education, OVC and Child Protection projects as well as the management of large, complex development programs and partnerships. Prior to joining HRI, Jodel held positions and consultancies at the UN, USAID, Global Funds, Salvation Army, AmeriCares, Chemonics, and Tearfund. Jodel holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration and an Undergraduate Degree in Social Work.
Hector Alay is a Guatemalan professional that has been working in the development sector with churches, NGOs, and local organizations for more than two decades. Hector brings to HRI new ideas, new allies, versatility and growth that has called the attention of government institutions and other NGOs in the country. His efforts focus on developing social capital, opening opportunities for leadership within the communities, especially youth and women, and engaging these leaders as the main protagonists of their own process of development, contributing to the autonomy of the communities. Hector has a Master’s Degree in Education for Development and a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology.
Dr. Worley is a Pulmonary/Critical Care/Sleep Disorders physician in private practice. Born and raised in Oklahoma, he completed his undergraduate and medical school training at the University of Oklahoma. Following this he entered active duty in the U.S. Army and completed his Internal Medical, Pulmonary Medicine, Critical Care Medicine, and Sleep Disorders training at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, TX and remains Board-Certified in all of these specialties. After receiving an Honorable Discharge from the U.S. Army he entered into private practice in Tulsa, Ok. In addition to a very active private practice, Dr. Worley develops, designs, and manufactures numerous medical products many of which are currently being used throughout the U.S. and abroad. Dr. Worley is married to Kay Worley, M.D., a Neurophysiology Neurologist and has three children.
Dan Hensiek is a native Oklahoman and a founding Partner of Architecture 9 PLLLP, which specializes in providing design and construction over-site of Public Schools for the State of California. Dan is a 1994 graduate of Oklahoma State University with degrees in Structural Engineering and Architecture. Additionally, Dan has a Masters of Business degree from Phoenix University. His interest in public school construction, especially in impoverished communities is one of the leading reasons for his interest in HRI. In his spare time Dan enjoys collecting art, working on his antique car and his never-ending house construction project.
Fr. George is the Presbyter of St. Antony Orthodox Christian Church (Antiochian Archdiocese) in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He has held this position since 1981. Fr. George is a 1980 graduate of Oral Roberts Seminary and a 1968 graduate of Bucknell University. Fr. George served in the United States Army and in Viet Nam as a combat officer with the 25th Infantry. He was born in Vermont, raised in Buffalo, New York and lived in Colorado Springs before moving to Tulsa. He has a strong interest in counseling and loves to sail and build. He and his wife Claudia, and three dogs, live in an eco-friendly home they have been building. Fr. George and Claudia have two sons who live and work in the Tulsa community.
Ms. Gruskin founded the Stuart C. Gruskin Foundation to advocate for bicycle and pedestrian safety after her husband was tragically killed by a cyclist in New York City in 2009. Together with the Bloomberg administration, they passed two new laws focusing on the reporting of statistics and requiring education on rules of the road for delivery cyclists. The Foundation also partnered with Hunter College to release an original data study focusing on how many pedestrians went to the hospital after being struck by bicycles. Prior to the passing of the laws, the Foundation launched a citywide PR campaign entitled, “The Pedal Pledge” whereby restaurants that employed deliver cyclists would agree to educate their own cyclists. In return, they would get a “Pedal Pledge” sticker for their window for the viewing public as well as pledge document for their wall. Nancy also handled the national PR for artists such as Victor Borge, Judy Collins, The King’s Singers and clarinetist, Richard Stoltzman. In addition, she founded and managed her own business entitled MUSIC FOR CHILDREN whereby she taught over 1000 children in her local area. She holds a Bachelor of Music from the Boston Conservatory of Music and a Master of Arts degree in Arts Administration from the University College Conservatory of Music.
Bill Sage has worked with and for both governmental and non-governmental organizations and agencies including the United States Agency for International Development, the International Rescue Committee, Catholic Charities, Church World Service, the International Catholic Migration Commission and International Orthodox Christian Charities. He served as Adjunct Professor at Arizona State University for nearly a decade and previously served as Senior Consultant to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Office in New Delhi, India. He has a BA in Political Science and a Masters of Public Administration. He is currently an Independent Consultant.
Mr. Wind is a retired Senior Foreign Service Officer from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), having worked off and on with the Agency primarily overseas on diplomatic assignments from 1990 to 2019 in Peru, Nicaragua, Angola, Nigeria, Iraq, Afghanistan and South Africa\Southern Africa Regional. In this role he provided oversight to U.S. government foreign aid development and humanitarian assistance, and supported U.S. Ambassadors as their senior development officer on multiple U.S. Embassy Country Teams. He previously worked as the Global Programme Coordinator for the International Save the Children Alliance Secretariat and as a Country Director and Health Sector Coordinator for different nonprofit private voluntary organizations including CARE and PLAN International in a range of countries including Ecuador, Bolivia, the Dominican Republic and the United Kingdom. He began his career as a Rural Public Health U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in Ecuador from 1980-1982. He graduated from the University of Chicago and is originally a New Yorker, although he currently resides in Fairfax County Virginia.