NICARAGUAN STAFF 

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

     Evan Durand 
      Regional Director

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!.  

   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. 

U.S. STAFF

    Chris Howell, Co-Founder

 

In addition to working with teachers across the country to coordinate pulsera sales, Chris heads the project’s educational mission in the U.S. He co-leads the project’s Educational Committee with Amanda Seewald, and has collaborated with Spanish teachers to develop the videos, activities, and lessons that we offer to all schools hosting pulsera sales.

 

Chris also plans and leads the teacher trips to Central America with Evan Durand. In 2018, he wrote the project’s core educational values, and is developing a guide that further examines the lessons we’ve learned over the past decade. He also manages inventory, films and edits the project’s growing video collection, and develops new initiatives for teachers to see the work we do in Nicaragua and Guatemala firsthand.

      Colin Crane, Co-Founder

 

Colin led one of the first-ever pulsera sales while still attending American University in D.C. in 2010 and has been working to build and expand the Pulsera Project ever since.

 

Colin handles a wide range of essential tasks in the project, from creating all of our visual branding & design materials to managing the website and social media, coordinating pulsera sales with hundreds of teachers and university students each year, handling much of our U.S. accounting, co-creating all of our educational videos, acting as resident photographer, sending out retail orders, attending state & national language conferences, and getting covered in paint making our colorful sale folders and tri-fold displays. 

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Jillian Bonner, U.S. Administrator

Jillian joined the U.S. Operations team in 2013 to develop Spanish curriculum when the educational program was in its infancy. She has collaborated with teachers during trips to Nicaragua and the Educational Committee to grow this integral part of the project. She is proud to have watched the educational mission of The Pulsera Project come to fruition and to have enriched K-12 Spanish classrooms in all 50 states.
 
Jillian coordinates pulsera sales with teachers and students across the U.S., packs and ships every pulsera box, counts through mountains of pulseras, attends regional World Language conferences and takes care of the Pulsera mascot, Kennedy.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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

Joe Terranova

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.

 

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   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.

 

EDUCATIONAL COMMITTEE

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Carrie Toth

Carrie has been teaching all levels of high school Spanish in southern Illinois since 1994. She has her Bachelors in Spanish education from Western Illinois University and her Masters in Spanish Education from Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville. She is a National Board Certified teacher and the author of comprehension based readers for the Spanish classroom.

 

A passionate curriculum developer, Carrie creates units and resources for teachers using the Understanding by Design or backward planning method. Carrie is also a National Geographic certified educator. Her passion for science and the environment brings many STEM based units to her classes at all levels.

Linda Egnatz is the 2014 ACTFL National Language Teacher of the Year and received the Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2013. A high school Spanish teacher from Illinois, her annual student travel tours were recognized with the 2015 ACTFL Global Engagement Initiative Award.

 

Linda is committed to providing language learners with meaningful interactions beyond classroom walls and supporting educators looking to create globally-focused curriculum. An avid traveler, she frequently visits Latin America and is excited to make interculturality a "Can-Do."

She is active in state, regional and national organizations, a past President and current Webmaster of the Illinois Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages and JNCL-NCLIS Board of Director member, and is well known for her advocacy role in the Seal of Biliteracy movement.

Linda Egnatz

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Cathy McCauley

Cathy McCauley is a native of Arizona and has been teaching for over 25 years. She graduated from Northern Arizona University with a degree in Communications and Political Science and after backpacking for 4 months decided that languages and education was her passion.

 

She graduated with a Master's degree from Grand Canyon University and began her teaching career as a middle school bilingual teacher. Cathy has taught courses for native speakers, IB courses and currently teaches AP Spanish. Last year she traveled to Nicaragua with the Pulsera Project summer teacher trip, an experience that has only strengthened her commitment to the project.

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Nathan Lutz

Nathan is the Global Learning Coordinator and Primary School French Teacher at Kent Place School, a leader in girls’ education, in Summit, New Jersey.
 
As an advocate for early world language instruction for all children, he serves the profession in various leadership roles: vice president of programs of the Foreign Language Educators of New Jersey’s (FLENJ); president of the National Network for Early Language Learning (NNELL); and vice chair of the Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (NECTFL).
 
Nathan is a frequent conference presenter, program consultant, and writer for various early language programs.

 

PULSERA PETS

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Kennedy

Kennedy joined the project in 2014 as our official puppy mascot. Her professional strengths include barking at delivery personnel, begging for food, supervising pulsera counting, and general adorableness.

 

She enjoys sleeping, playing frisbee with the US Operations team and going home at the end of the day.

Dufresne

At almost 12 years young, Dufresne brings a lot of wisdom to the team. He has over a decade of experience in puppy dog eyes, napping and scavenging for food.

 

In his free time, Dufresne enjoys working on his memoir, reading political non-fiction, and taking long walks.

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