WAW in the US
WAW’s Headquarters, New York Community Center, and Advocacy Program in the United States (US) are staffed by a small yet powerful group of individuals whose commitment to WAW is unparalleled. Our US team is highly experienced with diverse, professional backgrounds that ensure all our program needs–from the US to Afghanistan–are met.
US Headquarters Staff
To reach our Executive Director please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kevin Schumacher | Deputy Executive Director
Kevin Schumacher joined Women for Afghan Women in December 2016. As Deputy Executive Director, he works closely with the program and operations team in Afghanistan, supports the Finance, Communications, and Development teams in our New York Headquarters, and interfaces with WAW donors, partner organizations, and other stakeholders. He has close to 20 years of experience in grassroots organizing, human rights documentation, political research, sexual rights, and gender equality advocacy, refugee assistance, media outreach, and safety and security training. He formerly served as the Regional Program Coordinator for the Middle East and North Africa at OutRight Action International, an international human rights advocacy group. From 2006 to 2009, Kevin served as the Communications’ Coordinator for the same organization. Prior to joining OutRight, he worked at the Fellowship of Reconciliation, an interfaith peace and social justice organization, as the Coordinator for Iran and Iraq. Kevin is bilingual in Farsi and English, has an advanced comprehension of Standard Arabic, and has a basic understanding of Turkish. He has an M.A. in International Relations from the National University, Teheran, Iran, and an M.A in International Peace Studies from the University of Notre Dame.
US Country Director
To contact our US Country Director, please write email@example.com
To reach our Financial Controller please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nataliia Skalii | Financial Analyst
Nataliia joined Women for Afghan Women’s finance team in 2019. Born and raised in Ukraine, Nataliia received her Master’s Degree in Economics after completing her undergraduate studies. She moved to the United States (US) with her family in 2015. Nataliia comes to WAW with extensive experience in accounting, auditing, and financial analysis both in the private and non-profit sectors. In Ukraine, she worked for the international public accounting firm, PricewaterhouseCoopers, as auditor; and for one of the largest private agriculture companies in the country, as a financial analyst. Other prior US experience includes working as a financial analyst/grant accountant with the Institute of International Education in New York. At WAW, Nataliia is responsible for preparing financial statements, grant-specific expense reports and budgets, facilitating annual audits, and other financial management functions, among many other tasks.
Dolma Gurung | Finance Coordinator
Dolma pursued her bachelor’s degree in Applied Mathematics from Stony Brook University. After graduation, she worked as an accountant at The Yale Club of New York City, which provided Dolma with a great platform to develop skill sets that she needed to further her career path. She joined Women for Afghan Women in 2019 with not only her experience in finance, administration, and other coordination requirements, but also an ardent enthusiasm to be part of a team that works together in order to bring about positive change. Her commitment and eagerness to work for an organization committed to doing the right thing fuels her hard work and ambition to also do her part in the world.
Mona Abu Rayyan | Communications Manager
Mona Abu Rayyan joined Women for Afghan Women in 2015. With an education in International Relations, History, Economics, and Filmmaking, Mona has almost 20 years’ experience in the for-profit and not-for-profit domain, spanning from organizational development and strategic planning to marketing, media, and strategic communications. At WAW, Mona was responsible for setting a new communications strategy for the organization that included rebranding WAW, and updating and overhauling all of WAW’s communications and social media platforms, material, and collateral. Before WAW, Mona worked extensively in the non-profit domain in the Middle East working with refugee women, youth, and grassroots organizations. She has also worked on promoting Middle Eastern arts and culture prior to moving to New York in 2012. Her career has been spent working on bringing not-for-profit initiatives towards their strategic goals of attaining sustainability and long-term viability while maintaining the integrity of their core missions and altruistic visions. Before coming to Women for Afghan Women, Mona worked as an independent consultant or at high-level management positions for companies and organizations including, Handicap International, Oxfam Quebec, UN-ESCWA, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, Heinrich Boll Stiftung, Lebanese International University, the Arab Resource Collective, Optimiza Ltd., Ashkal Alwan – the Association of Lebanese Plastic Artists, InfoPro Management, and Saatchi & Saatchi, among others.
Kristine Wee | Development Manager
As Development Manager at WAW, Kristine Wee leads all grant writing and report writing, donor communications, manages event logistics, and works with all WAW teams to ensure grant compliance and donor-responsive communications. Kristine started her work in international development as a student activist and organizer in the Philippines and Cambodia. Growing up in one of the conflict-affected regions of the Philippines developed her interest in issues that intersect gender, conflict, and migration. She believes in fueling social change by building strong communities and systems. Her work includes contributions to the Philippines’ peace negotiating panel and fundraising for the National Domestic Workers Alliance. She joined WAW in 2016 as the Development and Reporting Associate. Her education background is in Development Studies with a focus on Development Management.
Rigi Philip | Development Associate
Rigi Philip joined Women for Afghan Women’s development team in 2019. She is responsible for supporting the development team’s fundraising strategy by providing grant proposal and report writing, in addition to providing administrative, communications, and events management support. Rigi completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science at the University of Texas at Austin and has a Master’s Degree in International Education Development with a focus on Education Policy from Teachers College, Columbia University. She formerly worked with The Tibet Fund in various capacities related to office and grant administration, fundraising, and educational programs. Her passion for education, women’s empowerment, and community development was developed through her volunteer experience with civil society organizations in India and Nepal.
New York Community Center Staff
To reach our Case Manager please contact: email@example.com
Sapna Owais | Caseworker
Sapna was born in Kabul, Afghanistan but her family moved to Peshawar, Pakistan in 1996. After graduating from high school and receiving certifications in English and computers, she began her career with the International Red Cross (IRC), working as a facilitator at a Women’s Empowerment Center in Shalman Refugee Camp for 2 years. In 2010, Sapna moved back to Kabul to work with Roots of Peace as gender manager–leading their program in 16 Afghan provinces, which aimed to build the capacity of women in horticulture and to support them through different trainings and relief packages that provided basic tools for running a small businesses.
In 2017, Sapna moved to the United States through the SIV program with her family. She began working at a public school in Queens, New York as a teacher’s assistant and as a student advisor. In parallel to her job at PS 206, Sapna worked as a volunteer interpreter with HIAS. In November 2019, Sapna joined the team at Women for Afghan Women’s NYCC as a caseworker committed to supporting and empowering WAW’s clients by assisting clients with connecting to social services, providing support in immigration-related matters, advising clients suffering from domestic violence, and providing interpretation for clients in Family Court, among other tasks.
Michael Tracey | Immigration Attorney and Legal Advisor
Born and raised in Manhattan and the Bronx, Michael Tracey has worked his entire life in public service and for the public interest. After attending high school and college in the Bronx at Fordham, Michael joined the Fire Department of New York City in 2005, and worked his way to the rank of Lieutenant. In 2009, Michael started law school and quickly became interested in Immigration Law. Since his admission to the New York Bar, he has worked tirelessly in private practice and for non-profits serving immigrants from across the world. In addition to running a small practice in Brooklyn where he works with clients individually, he works as Women for Afghan Women’s part-time Immigration Attorney and Legal Advisor, offering legal counsel and consultations to WAW’s clients on issues ranging from family petitions and adjustment of status, to non-immigrant visas, naturalization and citizenship, and cancellation of removal, among others.