Andy Feldman, Executive Director, has spent over 5 years involved with DLG in various capacities, and is continually inspired by the dedication and drive of small-scale coffee farmers. He enjoys biking, Latin American films and books, and playing with the Antigua ultimate club. He holds a B.A. in Political Science and International Studies from Yale University.
Allie Collopy, Community Tourism Director, discovered her passion for promoting cross-cultural exchange during a high school study abroad in Russia and has since gone on to run international education programs on five continents. She is excited to come back to Guatemala and strengthen relationships between coffee farmers and international visitors. Allie holds a B.A in Linguistics and an M.A. in International Education Management. She is passionate about language preservation and ethical development, and can usually be found with a book in hand.
Danilo Rodríguez, Account Manager, was born in San Miguel Escobar and as the son of a coffee farmer has been involved in coffee his whole life. Like many Guatemalans, he’d been drinking since he was 8 months old. Danilo started working with DLG as a translator and later as a tour coordinator. Looking for new challenges and professional growth, he then spent 2 years working in a call center in Guatemala City. Now he is back with DLG and is excited to continue to contribute and support people from his community.
Hannah Comins, originally from Philadelphia, is excited to be a part of the DLG team as the Service Learning Program Assistant. Her interest in Latin America was ignited by a service learning trip to Nicaragua in high school, which led her to study Latin American Studies, Community and Justice Studies and Spanish at Guilford College. Throughout her experiences with various NGOs in Guatemala, she has enjoyed connecting with Guatemalan families, sharing her love of Guatemala with visitors and learning about different approaches to development. Hannah loves hiking, exploring new foods, and salsa dancing!
Carol Méndez Rabe,
Tour Manager, is the brains behind the logistics and organization of De la Gente's tours and workshops. With over 10 years of experience as a travel manager and certified corporate travel expert, she has organized congresses and conventions for the corporate tourism industry in Guatemala. Moreover, Carol is a tour guide herself and works in tourism initiatives which allow everyone to collaborate. Carol spends her free time with her family and dogs. She enjoys photography, cooking, and (of course!) travelling.
Timoteo Minas serves as agricultural trainer, designing and implementing peer-to-peer programs to teach best practices to DLG's partner cooperatives. Timoteo helped found the San Miguel Escobar co-op in 2006 and has held a number of leadership roles. His coffee fields are on Volcan Agua, with a hike of at least 45 minutes at his speed (and much slower for those of us from lower altitudes). His wife is a mean cook, so if you are lucky enough to get on his tour, make sure you include the meal.
Ola Leszczynska, Director of Marketing & Communication, was so impressed by DLG's work that she decided to cross the Atlantic only to join the team. Having gained a master's degree in Pure Mathematics, Ola chose to go back to the real world and has focused her professional interests on communications. She has honed her skills working for an international technology company as well as volunteering for several NGOs. The greatest joys for this outdoorsy type are rock climbing, mountaineering and wild camping.
Jaime Vielman, Director of Finance, was born and raised in Jocotenango, Guatemala. He studied accounting & auditing at Mariano Galvez University of Guatemala and brings a plethora of experience in the world of budgeting. Jaime is excited to be a part of De la Gente, where his passion for improving the lives of co-nationals is part of his daily job, managing payments to cooperatives and farmers. In his free time, Jaime enjoys practicing English, meeting new people, salsa dancing, and all types of outdoor activities!
Keara Farrelly, Director of Development, is a coffee lover with a passion for international development. After graduating from the University of Delaware, Keara took a leap of faith and moved to Guatemala to begin working in the non-profit sector. After a few years of experience in Guate and then the US, she is excited to back in Guatemala and working to promote the livelihoods of so many coffee farmers. In her spare time, you can find her people-watching in Antigua's Central Park or rummaging around the market for unique foods and finds.
Joe Lawrence, translator extraordinaire, is originally from the south of England. He has been living and working in Latin America for close to eight years, starting in Colombia and Ecuador, and more recently exploring Nicaragua and Guatemala. Joe loves his job because it gets him on the plantations with the farmers, hiking and enjoying the wonderful views from Volcán de Agua.
Les Stoneham: Les is an experienced and accomplished coffee professional. His constant drive to learn and develop others' passions and talents shapes the culture of his company, Deeper Roots Coffee. He has been involved in all aspects of the coffee industry from roasting, technical work, training and sourcing. In 2009, Les founded Deeper Roots Development to sustain his continued work with coffee farmers in Guatemala and further development work with coffee growers worldwide.
Rupesh Shah is an experienced business and product leader with leadership and management experience in a variety of different domains including corporate, social enterprise, nonprofit, and as a CSR leader. Most recently he was Executive Director of LAUNCH, an innovation platform and start-up accelerator. Previously, Rupesh led Simpa Energy’s end-to- end customer experience including the product, technology, marketing, and customer service. Rupesh has consulted for AmeriCorps, the Presidio Leadership Center, the Corporation for National Service, Gorbachev Foundation, the United Nations and various other leading social organizations around the world. He has a MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University, and a BA from the University of California, San Diego.
Deborah Feldman: Debbie has served in numerous leadership roles at Congregation Beth El, Sudbury, and is currently an ESL tutor, teaching assistant, and test administrator for immigrants learning English through the FAESL+ and Literacy Unlimited programs. She has written many successful grant applications for the Framingham Public Schools. Previously she was a software engineer at Stratus Computer and a senior staff consultant at Arthur Andersen & Co. She holds an A.B. in Philosophy from Dartmouth College and an MBA from the University of Michigan.
Catriona Forrester: Catriona's international equities experience of over seven years as both analyst and portfolio manager has provided her with expertise in financial modeling and analysis, portfolio management, building relationships with investors, and contributing to capital raising efforts. She has a BA from University of New South Wales and postgraduate degrees in finance, accounting and commercial law from Macquarie University, Deakin University and University of Technology, Sydney.
Professor Ira Silver: Professor Silver is an associate professor of sociology, Framingham State University. His research focuses on economic opportunity and philanthropy. He has written or edited 4 books, most recently Giving Hope: How You Can Restore the American Dream and authors the blog Opp for all. He holds a B.A. summa cum laude in sociology from Amherst College and an M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from Northwestern University.