Office of the President

The Office of the President and CEO is responsible for overall leadership, strategy and the execution of programs in achieving the Church World Service mission and its vision. The Office oversees relationships and policy with the Board of Directors and Member Communions, managing relationships and emerging directions among its members. The CEO works intentionally with donors to develop support of the mission. The Office directs the agency’s advocacy, strategy, research, incubation of ideas and functions in finance and human resources.

A cross-cutting advocacy program complements the work of the CROP and IRP+ programs. We advocate for U.S. and United Nations policies and legislation that address CWS priority program concerns of refugee resettlement and global hunger and poverty; climate change and disaster risk reduction; and human emergencies, including conflict resolution and discrimination.

Through advocacy, strategy, research, innovation and partnership, we ensure that CWS is aligned in a common strategy globally. In addition, we work with a variety of academic, peer agency and professional membership organizations.

An incubation lab affords the space to connect strategic thinking through a team of advisors from business, industry and academia, to test ideas that can influence and support the CWS mission. This year, the lab identified new vehicles for fundraising with diversified audiences, new technologies and new partnerships. With the assistance of a group of advisors and ambassadors, the work is developed under a strategic framework.

CWS Leadership

The Rev. John L. McCullough, President & CEO
Maurice A. Bloem, Executive Vice President
Joanne Rendall, Chief Financial Officer
Keith Brauer, Global Director, Human Resources & Organizational Development
Ann Walle, Director, Office of the President
Martin Shupak, Director of Advocacy

Donna Derr, Executive Director, CROP
Robert Warwick, Senior Director, International Development Programs
Leslie Wilson, Asia Regional Coordinator
Martin Coria, Latin America & Caribbean Regional Coordinator
Steve Weaver, Regional Coordinator for the Middle East & Europe
Rev. Rebekah Belase, Director of Development Operations
Mary Catherine Hinds, National Community Event Strategist
Eric Baker, Director of Digital Marketing & Technology

Erol Kekic, Executive Director, Immigration & Refugee Program
Carleen Miller, Senior Director
Andrew Fuys, Director, Program Innovation & Evaluation
Kate Macom, Director for Resettlement & Integration
Miro Marinovich, Regional Representative Africa
Oscar Rivera, Director, South Florida
Roisin Ford, Director, Eastern Region
Jen Smyers, Director, Policy & Advocacy
Beth Oppenheim, Director, Resource Generation
Christina Levin, Director, External Relations
Scott Muttersbaugh, Director, Resettlement Support Center

Board of Directors

Rev. Dr. Earl Trent, Jr. serves as senior pastor of the Florida Avenue Baptist Church in Washington, D.C., the fourth pastor at this historic church. His ministry rests upon five pillars: Stewardship, Education, Evangelism, Mission and Social Justice. Under his leadership, Florida Avenue Church is a vibrant, vital, joyful and challenging congregation making a difference in the lives of people, the community and the world. Dr. Trent is Chair of the CWS Board.

Paul Chan is an M.D. (Internal Medicine, Pediatrics and Cardiology) living in Kansas City. He has raised significant funds for CWS through fundraising walks in the Grand Canyon. He has served on the board of a Guatemalan development organization and is the founder and former director of Community Impact, an umbrella organization at Johns Hopkins Medical School for initiatives in inner city Baltimore.

Hal Culbertson is associate dean for operations at the University of Notre Dame’s Keough School of Global Affairs. Prior to becoming associate dean, Culbertson worked at the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies for 17 years, serving as executive director from 2007-2014. Culbertson is the creator of several publications on peacebuilding. He has given numerous presentations related to business-NGO collaboration in zones of conflict, peace studies, peacebuilding and board strategic planning. Culbertson is an attorney and a member of an Episcopal congregation.

Rev. Patricia de Jong is ordained within the United Church of Christ and has served on several national church and local community boards. She retired as Senior Minister of First Congregational, Berkeley, California. She served as Minister of Education for Christian Discipleship at The Riverside Church in New York City and as Senior Minister of the Urbandale United Church of Christ in Des Moines, Iowa. As chair of the Strategic Planning Committee, Rev. de Jong is the Board’s first vice chair.

Silvana Faillace is an international public health and development leader with experience in implementation and evaluation of development programs in maternal, child and newborn health, nutrition and education programs. She obtained her master’s in International Relations from the London School of Economics and another master’s in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is a native Colombian.

Roland Fernandes is the Chief Operating Officer and General Treasurer of the General Board of Global Ministries of The United Methodist Church. He is also the Treasurer of the United Methodist Committee on Relief and the United Methodist Development Fund. Prior to working for Global Ministries, he was the chief auditor of the Methodist Church in India for eight years. Mr. Fernandes is Treasurer of the CWS Board as Chair of the Administration and Finance Committee.

Lenann McGookey Gardner is a Harvard MBA who is profiled in Marquis’
Who’s Who in the World 2017. An international expert in sales and leadership skills, she was a Fortune 500 executive before forming Lenann McGookey Gardner
Management Consulting, Inc. She has worked in 53 countries around the world and holds the American Marketing Association’s Professional Services “Marketer of the Year” award and the “Top Performing CEO” award from her state’s Business Weekly. She is a past Par Club President (#1 sales rep worldwide) at Xerox. She has served her community as a Stephen Minister and Stephen Ministry Leader, and a Big Brothers Big Sisters Mentor2.0 volunteer.

Daniel Hazman has extensive experience in strategy, supply chain, sustainability and business start-ups in many parts of the world. While working for Walmart, he made key contributions to their sustainability strategy. Mr. Hazman is the CEO and founder of the Sustainnovation Group, a community engagement platform powered by gamification. He has received several honors and awards for both his professional as well as his volunteer work. Mr. Hazman is the second vice chair as chair of the Nominations and Board Development Committee.

Beth Houle has nearly 25 years experience building nonprofits dedicated to community development, microfinance, women’s issues, youth development and civic engagement. Prior to serving as Executive Director with the Taproot Foundation, she served for 13 years with Opportunity International. She has an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. As a Ford Foundation fellow, Beth lived in India researching the social impact of U.S.-based companies. She is a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Eunice Kamaara is a full professor at Moi University in Theology and Religious Studies in Kenya, as well as International Affiliate Professor of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. She has an expertise in gender development and gender HIV/AIDS mainstreaming and has served on many boards and networks in leadership roles. As a writer, she contributes on topics such as gender relations, ethics, globalization and conflict.

Katy Keck’s career is in the culinary field, with an emphasis on hunger and the effect of poverty on food security. She launched the organization Infinite Family, an international non-profit which uses video technology to connect adult mentors with South African teens affected by HIV/AIDS. She received her bachelor’s in Liberal Arts at DePauw University and her MBA in Finance and Marketing from the University of Chicago’s Graduate School of Business.

Fr. Michael Kontogiorgis is the Registrar of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, New York, NY, and Director of the Archdiocese’s Internal Assessment and Evaluation Office. Among his varied duties, he has designed and implemented training on clergy sexual misconduct, clergy taxes and benefit programs. He is a member of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children and has completed their Forensic Interview Clinic. He also has been a financial consultant with various companies.

Rev. John L. McCullough is President and CEO of Church World Service. Since joining CWS in 2000, Rev. McCullough has been at the forefront of agency efforts to press for human rights and the empowerment of civil society in developing countries and to expand upon the role of the Church as a compassionate and prophetic voice for justice.

James T. Morris is president of Pacers Sports and Entertainment. He has served as the executive director of the World Food Programme and as an Under-Secretary General with the United Nations. Morris served as a Trustee Emeritus at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and is the recipient of a number of honors and awards for his work against hunger.

Rev. Vy Nguyen is Executive Director at Week of Compassion with the Disciples of Christ (Christian Church). He places special emphasis on connecting younger generations to faith-based humanitarian and development work. A former refugee himself, he has volunteered at various refugee organizations in Chicago and Dallas and has served on both of his Church’s National & Executive Boards.

Peter Persell has broad experience in grassroots, result-oriented development and humanitarian response work in various parts of the world. He has served in numerous settings and positions for Africare. His programmatic expertise covers water, sanitation, child survival, refugees, food security and HIV/AIDS prevention. Mr. Persell was a Peace Corps volunteer.

Dr. Shirley Cason Reed serves as International President of the Women’s Missionary Society of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, overseeing the work of 8,000 people and resourcing retreats and seminars. Most recently, Dr. Cason Reed organized a Summit for the Society’s Young Adult Members in Johannesburg and organized the funding and building of a childbirth clinic in Haiti. She is a member of the Tullie Quinn Missionary Society of Ward AME Church in Washington, D.C.

Laura Roberts is co-founder and chief executive officer of Pantheon Enterprises, which was honored with Ethisphere’s 2012 World’s Most Ethical Companies Award. She also serves on the Conscious Capitalism National Board of Directors, promoting higher purpose in business, and is a member of the American Sustainable Business Council and the Young Presidents’ Organization. Roberts is secretary of the CWS Board.

Carl Thong is an entrepreneur who most recently founded the Sunstone Group, headquartered in Singapore. Carl is currently completing his Master of Arts in Theological Studies. He is often engaged as a strategy consultant by NGOs and government organizations to drive innovation and leadership initiatives. Clients include Credit Suisse, the Singapore Tourism Board, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore and American Airlines.

Marshall Toplansky helps organizations to use information to make better, faster decisions, bringing insight to management decision-making. Formerly managing director of KPMG’s Center of Excellence in Data and analytics, Marshall is Clinical Assistant Professor of Management Science at Chapman University in Orange, CA. He earned a Harvard MBA and spent his early career at Ogilvy & Mather in New York and Washington, D.C. He currently lives in California.