Boston Area Returned Peace Corps Volunteers

Board of Directors



Executive Committee

 

Alicia Charleston

Alicia Charleston, Benin 2008-2010, President

Alicia served as a Small Enterprise Development Volunteer working with the Artisans Coalition of Natitingou. She took on secondary projects with student groups that worked to educate their peers on relevant health issues like malaria prevention and treatment, hygiene, and sexual health. Upon returning to the states, Alicia obtained her Masters in Public Health from Boston University. She currently works as an epidemiologist at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Alicia joined the board in September 2014.

 

 

 

Shane Renquist

Shane Runquist, Mexico 2008-2010, Vice President & Merchandise Chair

Shane served as a GIS and Knowledge Management Specialist in the Mexican government agency responsible for natural resource management in the states of Querétaro and Puebla. He made process improvements in forestry data management, provided training in GIS and GPS usage, and performed satellite imagery analysis to detect forest loss over time. Prior to his Peace Corps service, Shane worked as an embedded software engineer and manager at Garmin International. Following his service, he accepted a job with the MITRE Corporation which brought him to Boston to work as senior software systems engineer working in the public interest, primarily in mobile software security.

 

 

Stacie Constantian

Stacie Constantian, Ecuador 20011-2013, Treasurer

Stacie served as an Agriculture and Microfinance volunteer in San Francisco del Congo. She co-founded a series of community banks that enabled several dozen members and their families to receive access to capital in the form of short-term micro-loans. She also trained a committee of community leaders to continue a long-term savings and lending program using basic principles of accounting. Her secondary projects included teaching youth how to generate income through raising and selling pigs and chickens. She also worked with a women’s group of beekeepers through finding outlets to sell honey locally. Stacie moved to Boston in 2013 and received her MPH from Harvard University. She currently works at the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative. Stacie joined the board in February 2017.

 

Justine Egan

Justine Egan, Kenya 2004-2006, Secretary

Justine served as a public health volunteer with a small community-based organization in the Kenyan highlands. Her work included HIV prevention in schools and community settings; gender and development activities; and water and sanitation projects. After completing her service, Justine stayed in Kenya for 2 additional years and continued working on water and sanitation projects and community coalition-building in Kitui province and Nairobi with several non-governmental organizations. Upon returning to the US in 2008, Justine completed her MPH in epidemiology at Boston University. She is currently an epidemiologist at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Justine joined the board in October 2016.

 


Program Chairs

 

Brooke Barker

Brooke Barker, Benin 2013-2015, Sports Chair

A native Iowan, Brooke attended Iowa State University where she received degrees in Management and International Business and minors in French and English. During her time at Iowa State, she studied abroad for a summer on Semester at Sea and spent a semester in Paris at the ESSEC School of Management. Six weeks after graduating in 2013, she was on a plane to Benin, West Africa where she served for 27 months as a Peace Corps Volunteer. She worked as a Community Economic Development Advisor, assisting women’s saving and loan groups with their business activities. Following the conclusion of her service, Brooke moved to London to begin graduate school at King’s College London’s International Development Institute. Her program was entitled Emerging Economies and Inclusive Development and she focused her thesis on the factors that contribute to micro-enterprise growth and their effects on local employment in the state of Maharashtra, India. To supplement her secondary research, Brooke traveled to India for three months and worked as an Ashoka Volunteer for the Mann Deshi Bank and Foundation, the second largest microfinance institution in India. Upon finishing graduate school in September, Brooke moved to Boston and accepted a job as a Project Support Associate on the West Africa team at Management Sciences for Health. When she’s not working or traveling, she loves photography, cooking, reading, and exploring her new home in Boston. Brooke joined the board in November 2016.

 

Rose Cheyette

Rose Cheyette, Ukraine 2009-2011, Events Chair

Rose served as an Education volunteer, teaching English as a Foreign Language in Konotop, a town in Northern Ukraine. In addition to teaching English, Rose worked on female empowerment projects with girls at her school, worked with children with disabilities at a local NGO, and taught at and directed numerous weekend and summer English language camps, including Survivor Camp in the Carpathian mountains (Don't worry, everyone survived both years). Rose currently works for Samaritans, Inc., as the Coordinator for Community Education and Outreach, traveling around Boston and MetroWest to educate the public on suicide prevention.

 

 

Marta Hodkins-Summer

Marta Hodgkins-Summer, Kosovo 2014-2016, Community Service Chair

Marta served in Kosovo from 2014-2016, teaching English as part of the inaugural class of Peace Corps Volunteers. For her primary project, she taught and developed curriculum for grades 1-9, started her school’s first English library collection, and secured a grant for school improvement. She also co-founded Kosovo’s first English Spelling Bee, and served on Peace Corps Kosovo’s Volunteer Advisory and Gender & Diversity Committees. Prior to Peace Corps, she worked in academic administration in Boston, and as an English teacher in South Korea. She is currently the Director of Membership & Programs at the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network, and is working on a Master’s in International and Urban Development from the University of Toronto. Marta joined the board in October 2016.

 

Daniel Holman

Daniel Holman, Botswana 2010-2012, Membership Chair

Originally from South Carolina, Daniel served in Botswana as a Nongovernmental Organization (NGO) Capacity Building Volunteer. Based in the second largest city in the country, Daniel worked with a small clinic to improve operations and to provide services to PLWHA. He also worked on projects to provide after school activities to orphans and vulnerable children. After completing service, Daniel received a Master of Public Health from the University of Arizona and currently works for Harbor Heath Services as Manager of Primary Care at Neponset Community Health Center. Daniel joined the board in March 2016.

 

 

Jennifer Leigh

Jennifer Leigh, Haiti 2002-2004, Webmaster

Jennifer served as an agro-forestry volunteer in the southern department of Haiti from 2002-2004. She worked with a local community group to expand their tree nursery and promote reforestation and erosion control projects. She also helped oversee the setup of the second rural computer center in the country. She focused on training local instructors on basic computer skills and software applications, while also providing technical and teaching support. Jennifer earned a Master in Information Technology from the Harvard Extension School and is currently working at the Harvard Business School as a business and reporting analyst. She joined the board in August 2015.

 

 

Ben Palmer

Ben Palmer, Ecuador 2009-2011, Communications Co-Chair

Benjamin served as a Natural Resources Conservation Volunteer in an indigenous village in Northeast Ecuador where he taught English to 3 local schools and promoted eco-tourism as an alternative income source to subsistence farming. After returning from Ecuador, Benjamin began work in the public sector and currently serves as a Portfolio Management Specialist for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). He joined the board in December 2015.

 

 

 

Michelle Paul

Michelle Paul, Western Samoa 2012-2014, Careers Chair

Michelle, originally from North Carolina, served as a Rural Literacy Specialist in Western Samoa from 2012- 2014. She worked with primary school students in years 4 through 6, teaching skills such as phonics, letter relationships, and reading skills. She worked with teachers as well to produce sustainable teaching policies that moved them from a teacher-centered lesson plan to a student-centered one. After Peace Corps, Michelle moved to Boston and entered graduate school at BU, studying epidemiology and biostatistics. She’s currently working in the disaster relief field through disease surveillance, and regularly volunteers with the Red Cross Disaster Action Team. She joined the BARPCV board in 2015.

 

Eric Roberts

Eric J. Roberts, Paraguay 2005-2008, Fundraising Chair

Eric served as an Agroforestry Extension volunteer in Ka’apukumi-Franco Isla, Paraguay from 2005-2008. While in Paraguay, Eric worked with community members to integrate agroforestry and natural resources management techniques into traditional agriculture plots and with school instructors and national and international non-profit organizations to teach conservation biology. He also co-hosted a weekly radio show called Mba’e La Porte Norte, assisted in the development of an ecotourism project, and drank a lot of tereré with Paraguayans in the cool shade of mango trees. Based in Cambridge, MA since 2012, he is an associate at the Consensus Building Institute where he helps groups of government, business, nonprofit and community representatives to collaborate more effectively while developing solutions to social and environmental policy dilemmas at the local, regional, national, and global scales. Eric joined the board in November 2014.

 

Justin Senter

Justin Senter, Mauritania 2007-2009, Photo Contest Chair

Original from southern California, Justin has been in Boston since returning from Mauritania. He served as an English Education Volunteer teaching grades 6-12 in Tintane, a village in eastern Mauritania. During his service he also started adult education courses with local business people in town and won the 2009 West African Invitational Softball Tournament as a member of the RIM Pirates. Justin currently works as an English teacher at Randolph High School and as an Adjunct Lecturer at Northeastern University.

 

 

 

Elise Simons

Elise Simons, Zambia 2010-2013, Communications Co-Chair

Elise served as an Agriculture and Environment Volunteer in Zambia. She taught agroforestry, organic gardening, conservation farming, and tree planting to farmers in her village in order to promote better health and nutrition as well as environmental sustainability. She also took on secondary projects in appropriate technology innovation training and HIV/AIDS prevention education. Elise extended for a third year as PCVL, leading workshops and providing volunteer support. Upon returning to Boston, Elise started working at the Product Stewardship Institute as a waste management policy and programs associate. She is currently earning her graduate degree in urban and environmental planning from Tufts University.

 

Colleen Staatz

Colleen Staatz, Zambia 2007-2010, Community Grants & Speakers Bureau Chair

Colleen served as a health volunteer in northern Zambia. For her first two years, she trained village health committees on a variety of health topics, including water and sanitation; malaria; HIV/AIDS; tuberculosis; child health and nutrition; and reproductive health. She then extended her service for a third year and moved to the capital city, Lusaka, where she worked with Catholic Relief Services on a microfinance project for caregivers of HIV-positive patients. Upon returning from Zambia, Colleen received her Masters in Public Health from Emory University and worked for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for several years. She now works as a Health Analyst at Mathematica Policy Research in Cambridge, where she works mostly on domestic public health projects. Colleen joined the board in October 2016.

 


Currently Recruiting

BARPCV is currently recruiting for positions on the board. To nominate yourself or a fellow RPCV to one of these positions or to learn more, please contact info@barpcv.org.

 

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