Colin Crane, Co-Founder

 

Colin led one of the first-ever pulsera sales while attending American University in D.C. and began working full-time for the Pulsera Project after graduating in 2011 with a degree in Visual Communications and International Studies.

 

Colin works alongside students and teachers to coordinate pulsera sales, designs and manages the website, co-creates Pulsera Project videos, handles all of the project's social media and graphic design initiatives, and helps lead student trips to Nicaragua every Summer.  

Chris Crane, Co-Founder

Chris and his wife Sue are part of the project's unpaid volunteer staff. Chris is the project's main U.S – Central America liaison and he travels to Nicaragua and Guatemala often to meet with regional director Evan Durand, project artisans, and many NGO partners.

 

While not traveling, Chris focuses on strategic planning, expanding university and NGO collaborations, and he runs the project's online educational program for student travelers. He co-designed and built the project's social impact assessment program which ensures that project funds are wisely invested in programs and social enterprises that achieve measureable and lasting impact.

Oscar is our local Nicaraguan expert.  Born and raised in Granada, Nicaragua he provides insight and perspectives that others might not see.  As an only child, raised by mother and an aunt, he praises his difficult upbringing for instilling in him a profound appreciation for family and the love it radiates.  He’s since been happily married for 27 years and enjoyed raising their three children in their hometown.

 

Industrious as he is ambitious, Oscar was a welder before studying to be an accountant in the late 80’s and then administration in the 90’s.  Over the years he’s worked for the government and private businesses, but since joining our team expresses gratitude for the opportunity to contribute his knowledge and efforts to a nonprofit organization that prioritizes people's well being.

          Oscar Eduardo Obando

       Nicaraguan Accountant/Administrator

   Skarlette Bermudez

       Artisan Advocate

Born and raised in Granada, Nicaragua.  Skarlette is both local and has ample experience traveling and working throughout the Americas.  She majored in Pedagogy at La Universidad Catolica and has over a decade of experience teaching.  Before joining the PP she served as Educational Programs Director for different non-profits and has found a happy home with the PP.

 

Though Skarlette provides perspective on everything we do, her main focus is working directly with artisans and promoting their well-being.  She oversees the formation of new artists groups, the purchase of their pulseras, and coordinates our health, housing and scholarship programs.  When not in the field, she likes to spend her time with family, reading, watching movies, and gathering with friends. 

Daniela was born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela and has spent the last 6 years living in Mexico and the US. She holds a Master’s in Public Administration and has over three years of experience in communications and marketing in non-profit organizations and technology firms. She received a Certificate in Social Enterprise Management and Impact Investment with the Frontier Market Scouts program and was connected to the Pulsera Project.

 

She spent two years helping design and implement the projects approach to evaluating social impact.  She now serves as a volunteer member of our committee that oversees investments in projects, organizations, and community development initiatives.  

              Daniela Guerrero

        Impact Investment Committee

Abigail Sebton, Board Member

Abby started out leading a pulsera sale at Henderson High School in 2010, and she has been actively involved in the Pulsera Project since then.

 

While enrolled full-tme at Tulane University Abby spent two summers working hand-in-hand with artists in Nicaragua, and since graduating in 2015 she has been a key player in much of the behind-the-scenes decision making of the Pulsera Project.

      Chris Howell, Co-Founder

 

After leading the Pulsera Club there for two years, Chris graduated from the College of Charleston in 2011 with majors in Latin American Studies and English and began full-time work for the Pulsera Project.

 

Chris coordinates pulsera school sales, manages pulsera inventory, makes many of the Pulsera Project's videos, and recently invested almost a full year developing the Pulsera Project's unique Spanish curriculum materials, on top of many other projects integral to the project's success.

    Chris Howell, Co-Founder

 

Chris began working full-time for the project in 2011 after graduating from the College of Charleston with degrees in English and Political Science. After collaborating with a few teachers from around the country he launched the project’s Spanish educational program.

 

In addition to developing new educational content and videos, Chris manages pulsera inventory, coordinates sales, and plans teacher trips to Nicaragua. He currently developing educational content on global citizenship and the project’s unique approach to service and international development.

Jillian Bonner, U.S. Administrator

An Arkansas native, Jillian attended Columbia College in S.C. where she majored in Spanish Studies and studied in Mexico and Spain. After graduating, she pursued a teaching job in sixth grade Spanish--she loved being in the classroom, but her travels to Latin America had her dreaming of work with a non-profit centered around social justice and education.

 

Jillian has been an enormous help since joining the team in August 2013---she coordinates school sales and counts thousands of pulseras, manages all of our shipping, and works with Chris Howell to develop Spanish educational materials that tie in with the Pulsera Project's service component.

Born and raised in Monimbo, Nicaragua (revered as the cradle of Nicaraguan Folklore and still renowned for its arts and crafts), Agnes was born into a humble family of artisans. Since age 6 she has been weaving bags, belts, and hammocks from natural yarns. At age 15 this skill became her profession when she left her studies to focus on raising the first of her three children. Through hard work & perseverance, she eventually procured a stall in the municipal market, which is where we were so fortunate to stumble upon her pulseras. 

 

Since she began working with the PP in 2008, Agnes has proven invaluable at organizing her peers, and quickly earned a permanent position in assisting fellow artisans improve the quality and consistency of their art.  Through visits to the States and local organizations we partner with, she has developed a broad understanding of the projects goals and plays an integral role on the Artisan Advocate Board.  

   Agnes Janette Acuña

      Artisan Development

Jorge was born in Managua in 1983 and continues to live there with his wife and daughter.  He studied law at the Universidad Centroamericana (UCA) and later went on to get a Masters in Non-Profit Administration at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, España (UAM).

 

The last 10 years he has worked as a professor of law and as a university administrator the past 10 years.  At the same time he also coordinated a 3 year initiative by the Organization of American States (OAS) that worked with dozens of organizations dedicated to various programs, including the youth, violence, art, peace culture and education.  

 

He currently forms part of the Evaluations Team, helping the project improve its methodology and conduct impact evaluations of organizations we are considering funding & collaborating with 

  Jorge Francisco Morales

    Social Impact Coordinator

Ninoska is from the colonial city of Granada and lives with her children and family just a few blocks from our office.  She studied Tourism and Hospitality and worked her way up to Operations Manager during her 11 year stint developing one of Nicaragua's most acclaimed hotels.    

   

Her role with the project will be spending time with artisans to help us better serve their needs and improve well-being for them and their communities.  She'll also assist with the Artisan Benefits programs, the collection of pulseras and coordinating visits/exchanges between the artisan groups.   

            Ninoska Davila
               Artisan Advocate

   Sue Patterson, Co-Founder

 

Sue is the project's wonder-woman accounting guru, and handles all of the project's financial tasks! She works as a volunteer and dedicates hundreds of hours to the project on top of her full-time work as a software support team-leader for Ellucian.

 

Sue has been part of the project's unpaid staff since 2009, keeping track of school sales and Nicargua projects along with mountains of receipts. When Sue's sunny disposition isn't visiting the project's many artisans or educational partners, she and her husband Chris are scouting the Nicaraguan outback looking for new student trip adventures.

 

Evan is originally from Athens, Ohio but settled in Granada, Nicaragua over a decade ago.  Over the years he’s been an entrepreneur, project manager and bicultural consultant for individuals and business.  In addition to spending time with his family, he currently serves as the director of our operations in Nicaragua and Guatemala.

 

While in the past Evan worked directly with artists and partner organizations, his latest role is developing and supporting our local team to manage operations. He also leads student and teacher trips, helps guide our strategy in the region, and spends time investigating high-impact organizations for the Pulsera Project to partner with!.  

Evan Durand, Regional Director

             Jael Madriz

  Artisan Development / Impact Team

Jael is from Masaya, where she currently lives with her family and is raising her 11 and 2 year old children.  Upon finishing a degree in psychology, she originally joined the project as psychologist in 2012.  Since then she has decided to go back to school to study Homeopathic Medicine. 

 

She's also a part time artisan, co-leads Artisan Development, and is part of our Evaluations Team.  In short, she's extremely versatile and wonderful to work with. 

 

In her own words, "Being an artisan of the Pulsera Project has allowed me engage with many people, learn from the other artisans and continue my studies.  Thanks to my scholarship from the project, it helps fulfill my goal to help more people, not just within the context of mental health, but now also socially, physically and emotionally."  

Arquimedes hails from Monimbo and is an active member of its indigenous community.  His upbringing, culture, and Jesuit education has instilled in him a deep sense of responsibility for public service.  Since his teenage years he has worked on human rights initiatives for migrants, indigenous peoples, and women alike.  Upon finishing his degree in Social Communications, he has worked extensively for the US and Spanish Embassies as well as teaching journalism at a local university.  

 

His main role is to oversee the execution of our Artisan Benefits budget, including the health, housing and scholarship programs, etc..  He'll also handle our digital media efforts and serve as Artisan Advocate for the junior artisans.  

      Arquímedes Hernández 
      Artisan Benefits Coordinator

Joan Dukovic, Board Member

Joan and her son Chris are two of the original pulsera sale pioneers!! Joan led one of the first-ever pulsera sales at Friendship Elementary school, where she has been a teacher for many years. She and Chris have traveled to Nicaragua with us many times and seen the transformation of the Pulsera Project from a small home-grown project to what it is today!

 

Joan has been on the Board of Directors since the beginning and has had a hand in many important Pulsera Project decisions.

 

Joe Terranova, Board Member

Joe graduated from Eastern University in 2008 and took a job in Uganda as Country Director of a non-profit that provided employment for 130 displaced refugees. Joe then started a social enterprise in Uganda called "Tukula", with his wife Melissa. He lived and worked in Uganda for 4 years before moving back to the U.S.

 

Since 2012, Joe has been involved in multiple capacities with the Pulsera Project, including forming a partnership between the Project and Tukula, as well as attending multiple pulsera sale events. Joe is now looking forward to working closer with the Project, and is happy to be the newest member of the Board of Directors.