The Brown Alumni Association (BAA) Board of Governors establishes priorities, allocates resources, and oversees implementation of initiatives. Officers are elected by the alumni community biannually and all other members are appointed by the Board annually.
Brown Alumni Association Board of Governors
The Brown Alumni Association Board of Governors includes four elected officers and 20-25 appointed members.
President: Amra Sabic-El-Rayess ’00
AB’00, Economics | M.A. ’04, Columbia University
M.A. ’04, Columbia University | Ph.D. ’09, Columbia University
Amra Sabic-El-Rayess is the Associate Professor of Practice in Education Policy and Social Analysis at Teachers College, Columbia University, the Project Director at the Center for Benefit-Cost Studies in Education at TC, and faculty member at the Harriman Institute for Russian, Eurasian and Eastern European Studies. Dr. Sabic-El-Rayess is an interdisciplinary scholar who draws on economics, sociology, and political science to study education’s links to social mobility, social transformations, teacher quality, transitional justice, corruption, elite formation, radicalization, and the inclusion of women. She maps out concrete ways to bolster women’s social mobility through financial empowerment. She also examines how informal educational practices and formal education institutions create new societal dynamics, norms, and behaviors.
Dr. Sabic-El-Rayess has received numerous awards, honors, and appointments, including grants from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the Kenan Institute, and the U.S. State Department, where she also serves as a member of its international Expert and Educational Diplomacy Speaker Program. Dr. Sabic-El-Rayess has also worked in various capacities for several foreign Ministries of Education as well as for numerous global institutions and corporations, including the United Nations Development Programme the International Foundation for Electoral Systems, the International Medical Corps, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), Deutsche Bank, and Goldman Sachs.
About the President
Amra serves as the chief executive officer of the Alumni Association and presides at all meetings of the Board of Governors. She appoints the committee chairs and members of the Board of Governors and serves as an ex officio member of all committees.
President-Elect: Harry Holt Jr. ’84, P’16
ScB’84, Chemical Engineering | M.B.A. ’91, Dartmouth College
Harry Holt is the President of BITHGROUP in Baltimore. He is responsible for running all aspects of the business. Harry has also been an adjunct Professor of Business at Morgan State University for the past 20 years and has received awards from Morgan State, INROADS, and the Irvine Nature Center for leadership. He published his first book in 2020 entitled “You Can Get There from Here: from a Historically Black College or University to Greatness Volume One.” He serves as the vice president of the Dartmouth Club of Maryland and is the chair of the Strategic Planning Committee as a Trustee for the Irvine Nature Center.
Previously, Harry was the mid-Atlantic regional director for INROADS, a management consultant with Price Waterhouse, and a systems engineer with International Business Machines. Harry was a math teacher with the Baltimore City Public Schools and he began his career at Calgon Corporation as a production engineer.
At Brown, Harry was the president of the Onyx Society his senior year, vice-president for the National Society of Black Engineers, a Minority Peer Counselor, and a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Alpha Gamma Chapter. He currently serves as the president of Brown’s Association of Class Leaders Board and is a member of the BAA’s MAC: Diversity & Inclusion Committee. He has also served as class co-chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, on the leadership committee for the Brown Club of Baltimore, and as an alumni interviewer. He is a parent of a class of 2016 Brown alumna.
About the President-Elect
The president-elect serves two years in the role of President-Elect, followed by two years as President of the Alumni Association. He or she assists the President in guiding the Board and, in the event of a permanent vacancy in the Presidency, would serve out the vacant term. At the time that the President's term begins, he or she also begins a six-year term as an Alumni Trustee.
Secretary: Ivon Rodriguez de Perez ’00 EMBA’16
AB’00, International Relations and Hispanic Studies |
E.M.B.A. ’16, Business Administration
With experience in business development, general management, and marketing, Ivon's diverse background stems from her love of entrepreneurship, business innovation, and concept creation. Ivon graduated from Brown University with a double major in International Relations and Hispanic Studies and holds a joint Executive Master in Business Administration from Brown University and IE Business School. She is currently pursuing an Executive Ph.D. at Virginia Tech in business with a marketing focus.
Ivon has been instrumental in the startup phase of numerous television stations including Telemundo Boston, Telemundo Hartford, Telemundo Providence, and the Caracol Television Miami station. While engaged in studies with the IE Brown Executive MBA, she served as the vice president of marketing for the private, non-profit Smithsonian affiliate, HistoryMiami Museum. She served as the managing director for IE University overseeing the growth of the institution and its programs in the Southern U.S. and Caribbean. Until recently, she served as the chief marketing officer of The 360 Group, a marketing firm focused on entertainment and innovation. She currently serves as a chief marketing officer in tech.
A Miami native, Ivon now resides in Southlake, TX, and is active in her community through leadership roles at various organizations. Ivon serves on the Board of Governors of the Brown Alumni Association and as vice president of the Brown University Latino Alumni Council.
About the Secretary
Keeps records of all proceedings of the BAA Board of Governors. He or she serves a two-year term and participates in major Alumni Association decisions.
Treasurer: Stephen A. Owens ’78, P’17
AB’78, Independent Concentration |
J.D. ’81, Vanderbilt University
Steve Owens is chairperson of the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB), appointed by President Joe Biden. The CSB is charged with investigating accidents at chemical facilities and recommending actions to prevent them from happening. From 2003 to 2009, Steve was director of the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, appointed by Governor Janet Napolitano, after which he was appointed by President Barack Obama to be assistant administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), where he was responsible for overseeing EPA’s scientific and regulatory programs governing the U.S. chemicals industry. Earlier in his career, Steve served as counsel for the U.S. House Science and Technology Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight, chaired by then-Congressman Al Gore. Steve later was chief counsel for Gore in the U.S. Senate.
Steve is a longtime active Brown alumni and class leader. He has served as a Reunion activities volunteer, treasurer, and president for the Class of 1978. He has been a board member, treasurer, and president of the Association of Class Leaders and previously was a member of the Brown Alumni Association Board of Governors from 2017-2020. Additionally, from 2020-2023, Steve served on the Brown University Community Council, chaired by President Paxson. He also is a former Alumni Interviewing Program volunteer.
Steve graduated with honors from Brown, where he was vice president and president of the Undergraduate Council of Students (UCS) and secretary of the Student Caucus (the predecessor to the UCS). He also served on a number of university committees and participated in a range of campus activities. Steve received his law degree from Vanderbilt University, where he was editor-in-chief of the Vanderbilt Law Review.
About the Treasurer:
Manages the funds of the Association as directed by the Board, prepares financial reports, and helps to shape the BAA's overall financial strategy. He or she serves a two-year term and participates in major Alumni Association decisions.
Bardiya Akhbari PhD’21
M.S.’16, University of Kansas | PhD’21, Biomedical Engineering
Born and raised in Tehran, Iran, Bardiya has built a career focused on the practical applications of artificial intelligence. With a solid academic foundation from his PhD at Brown, Bardiya now resides in Seattle, WA, where he works as an applied scientist at Amazon, contributing to the development of AI systems. Prior to his current position, Bardiya was a research fellow at Harvard Medical School, where he created deep learning solutions for healthcare to enhance patient well-being.
An active member of the Brown community, he received the "Contribution to Community Life" award and delivered the 2021 Commencement ceremony doctoral address. While at Brown, he co-founded the Iranian Graduate Students Association and was its president for four years. He was also a member of the International Students’ Advisory Board, working with administrators to address the problems facing international students. During his tenure, they advocated for enhancing tax advising and filing support services, subsidizing visa application costs, and establishing emergency funding for leaves, meal support, and other basic needs. He was also a representative on the Graduate Student Council for two years and the faculty meeting observer for the Biomedical Engineering and Biotechnology Graduate Advisory Board.
In his free time, Bardiya enjoys diving into a good book (or an enticing audiobook) and embarking on spontaneous neighborhood strolls, always eager to explore new places.
Akash M. Altman ’20
Akash is a problem solver and relationship builder with cross-industry experience spanning higher education, government, non-profit, and strategy consulting. He currently works as the deputy chief of staff at On Belay Health Solutions and is a co-founder of Community Facilitators. He has a proven track record leveraging an engineering mindset in launching new initiatives, navigating complex organizational landscapes, developing insights for support of senior leaders, and forging strategic partnerships.
Graduating in the Brown University Class of 2020 with a degree in engineering, Akash serves on the Brown Alumni Association Board of Governors and the steering committee for the Disability and Neurodivergence Alumni Collective. In his time as a student at Brown, Akash found community at the Brown Center for Students of Color, South Asian Students Association, Leadership Development Initiative, and served as a Minority Peer Counselor. He began his career at Brown as a Campus Life Fellow & special assistant to the Vice President for Campus Life, building student engagement programs such as the Campus Life Student Advisory Board, Disability Justice Student Initiative, and JUST Lead (Justice-oriented, Understanding, Supportive, and Transformative Leadership). Akash collaborated with staff in the cultural and identity centers on a variety of student-centered programs and initiatives.
Kimberly Arredondo ’11
AB’11, Literature and Culture in English
A native of Mission, Texas, Kim Arredondo is a donor relations and advancement communications professional at Ransom Everglades School in Miami, Florida. She studied literatures and cultures in English at Brown, where she developed a passion for organizing programs and leading creative projects, such as Semana Chicana, Brown’s Mexican Heritage Week.
She further explored her interest in project management through certificate courses at the University of Miami in 2018 and Cornell University in 2019. She was recognized as one of Ever True’s 40 Under 40 Fundraisers in 2019.
Since graduating from Brown, Kim has remained involved as a volunteer for the Brown Club of Miami, the Brown Annual Fund, Women’s Launch Pad, and the Alumni Interviewing Program. She also volunteers as a mentor for AmeriCorps Public Allies. Kim enjoys traveling, cooking, and spending time with her boyfriend and their dog, Magic.
Zanagee Artis ’22
AB’22, Environmental Studies; Political Science
Zanagee Artis is the 23-year-old founder and executive director of Zero Hour, a global youth-led climate justice organization. Zanagee works to oppose new fossil fuel leasing and development on public lands and waters as the Fossil Fuels Policy Advocate for the Natural Resources Defense Council.
He is the co-author of “A Kids Book About Climate Change” and the co-host of “1 Point 5: A Kids Podcast About Climate Justice.” Zanagee has been featured in numerous publications for his work on climate justice policy, including The New York Times, The Miami Herald, and The Economist. In March of 2022, Zanagee traveled to Antarctica as an ambassador of the Global Choices Arctic Angels Network to witness polar climate impacts firsthand.
At Brown, Zanagee served as chair of the Greek Council and President of Zeta Delta Xi. He also led the Black Pre-Law Association and served as chair of campus life for the Undergraduate Council of Students. He currently serves on the Brown Alumni Association Board of Governors and the Advisory Council of the Institute at Brown for Environment and Society (IBES).
Zaid A. Ashai ’99
AB’99, Economics; International Relations | M.B.A. ’07, Harvard Business School | M.P.A. ’07, Harvard Kennedy School
Zaid Ashai serves as Nexamp’s chairman and CEO, providing the vision and leadership to drive the company’s continued growth and innovation. Before joining the management team, Zaid oversaw Nexamp as a general partner at venture firm Point Judith Capital.
Previously, Zaid worked at Good Energies, where he was elected a Kauffman Fellow and focused on investments in next-generation energy efficiency technologies including Nexamp, 3TIER, Emergency Bioenergy, Everpower, and Kalpan in India. He joined Good Energies from Harbourvest Partners and was previously an investment banking analyst in Credit Suisse’s Technology Group.
Zaid holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School and an MPA from the JFK School of Government at Harvard University. At Harvard, he was selected as a Zuckerman Fellow. He has a BA in international relations and economics, with honors and Phi Beta Kappa, from Brown University. He has served as a judge and mentor for the New England Cleantech Open and a guest faculty member for the Pennsylvania Power Law Conference hosted by the Pennsylvania Bar Institute. Zaid is currently on the board of Vote Solar.
Maureen Friar ’82
AB’82, International Relations | M.P.P. ’92, University of California, Berkeley
Maureen Friar has built her career in the nonprofit and social justice sectors for the past 35 years. She has led organizations in New York and nationally that focus on affordable housing, community development, homelessness, mental health, women's empowerment, and youth education. These organizations include the YWCA of the City of New York, the Supportive Housing Network of New York, the National Housing Conference, and Community Access, among others. For over 16 years, she has served as an interim executive director, COO, and consultant to nonprofit boards and management on their governance, advocacy, and fundraising strategies. Maureen currently serves as the chief of staff of the Harvard Business School Club of New York.
In 2018, Maureen founded and is the current co-chair of the Nonprofit/Social Impact Group of the Brown University Club in New York. She is passionate about making connections and enlightening alumni about the great organizations and Brown alumni leaders addressing many of our world's most pressing problems. She previously served for six years on the Goldman School of Public Policy Alumni Association at the University of California at Berkeley. Maureen lives in Manhattan and sings alto with the Riverside Choral Society.
Stephanie Garcia ’21
AB’21, Political Science
Stephanie is a dynamic professional with a passion for developing avenues for socioeconomic mobility. A first-generation Mexican American hailing from Los Angeles, Stephanie studied political science at Brown. Between classes, Stephanie worked with the Rhode Island State Senate’s policy office on STEM education policy and with the Immigrant Defenders Law Center, where she supported undocumented immigrants receiving legal support and social services.
In her current role on the Government Innovation team at Bloomberg Philanthropies, Stephanie works on the Mayors Challenge, where she supports cities across the globe driving forth innovative solutions to address pressing urban challenges. Her dedication to public service extends beyond her role at Bloomberg Philanthropies, as she also serves as a regional representative for the Brown University Latino Alumni Council.
Prior to her current roles, Stephanie worked in corporate reputation and public affairs at one of the nation’s largest democratic polling firms and worked as a financial compliance consultant at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors.
Evan Geller ’99
AB’99, Business Economics | M.B.A. ’03, Harvard Business School | M.B.A. ’06, New York University
Evan Geller is a Managing Director at Sixth Street Partners and co-head of the firm’s Credit Market Strategies business, which manages corporate and structured credit assets for pensions, endowments, and charitable foundations. Prior to joining Sixth Street, Evan worked as an investment professional at KKR & Co.
While at Brown, Evan was the co-founder of the Brown Entrepreneurship Program and a member of the President’s Advisory Council on University Planning. Evan also served on his 10th and 20th Reunion Gift committees.
Evan lives in New York City with his wife and their two children.
Araceli M. Hintermeister ’12
AB’12, Ethnic Studies | M.S. ’16, Simmons University | M.A. ’16, Simmons University
Araceli Méndez Hintermeister is a librarian and information professional. She currently serves as a director of records & information management for Uplift Education, a public charter school district in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Through her work, she implements and manages initiatives to drive content creation, capture, sharing, and collaboration across twenty-one campuses in the district.
Through the mentorship she received at Brown from the Ethnic Studies department and Prof. Patricia Perea, Araceli transitioned to a career in libraries and archives. She’s worked in a variety of public, academic, and corporate libraries where her work always revolves around helping others connect with literary and informational resources.
In addition to serving on the BAA Board of Governors, Araceli is a volunteer for the Zeta Delta Xi, the Brown University Latino Alumni Council, and the President's Advisory Council on the Library.
Araceli lives in Dallas with her husband, Arthur Hintermeister ’05, and their pets.
Eric J. James PhD’17
B.A. ’11, St. John's University | Ph.D. ’16, Brandeis University | PhD’17, Neuroscience
Eric James is a seasoned education administrator with a wealth of experience and is currently making significant strides in the realm of education and inclusivity. As assistant head of school and middle school director at Harlem Academy in New York, Eric plays a pivotal role in shaping the educational landscape for students of color.
Eric earned his Ph.D. in neuroscience at Brown, completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship at Brandeis University, and currently serves as an adjunct professor at Adelphi University. Eric has devoted over 20 years to academia, research, and professional endeavors. This diverse journey encompasses military service, non-profit work, and extensive teaching experiences, highlighting Eric's multifaceted approach to education.
While at Brown, Eric served as the chapter president of SACNAS (Society for Advancing Chicanos/Hispanics & Native Americans in Science) and was heavily involved in the recruitment and retention of historically underrepresented students, including BIPOC, veterans, low-income, and first-generation learners to Brown. In addition to his recruitment and retention efforts at Brown, Eric has been a tireless advocate and mentor for underserved students, faculty, and staff. Eric has spearheaded and facilitated a variety of programs, extracurricular activities, and special events aimed at cultivating vibrant school and work cultures via several national, university, and local programs such as the Neuroscience Scholars Program, Galaxy Mentoring Program, and the Leadership Alliance.
Diana L. Jeffrey ’04
AB’04, Education Studies; Public Policy; American Institutions
Diana is managing partner at Jadepoint Consulting. She has advised executives of high-profile government agencies and Fortune 500 companies for two decades.
After Brown, Diana honed her craft in Washington, D.C. by scaling entrepreneurial businesses and contributing as a strategic change consultant for the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the U.S. Navy, and FEMA. In 2013, she joined the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company as quality director, where she led the customer experience strategy for one of the world’s leading luxury and hospitality brands. During her tenure, Diana’s portfolio grew to over 40 properties across the U.S., Europe, the Caribbean, and Latin America, including multiple Marriott luxury brands such as St. Regis, EDITION, and W Hotels.
Diana’s engaging and inquisitive style has led many executive teams to success. As a Leadership Team Strategic Planning Facilitator, her properties earned Forbes 5-Star Awards, top 1% across the brand for customer and financial performance, and the distinction of #1 Hotel by Condé Nast.
In 2020 during the pandemic, Diana co-founded Jadepoint, a global consulting firm that guides people-centric companies to create service and performance excellence. Partnering together on data-driven decisions, organizational culture, and leadership development, Jadepoint and its clients achieve customer-employee loyalty and unprecedented results. As managing partner, she oversees the company’s vision and execution.
In addition to degrees from top academic institutions—Brown University and the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business, where she earned her MBA—Diana has performed extensively as a stage actress and jazz singer. She participates in a variety of industry and community organizations. Diana is passionate about creativity, immersive experiences, growing next-generation leaders, and global connections that contribute to a more compassionate world.
Amer M. Khayyat ’99
ScB’99, Engineering | M.X. ’00, MIT | M.E. ’00, MIT
Amer Khayyat currently holds the position of vice president of operations & data services at Silixa, an innovative technology company specializing in distributed fiber optic sensing. Prior to this role, he held various leadership positions in the global energy technology sector, including executive director at Baker Hughes and vice president at General Electric. Amer is also the co-founder of YY ReGen in his home country of Lebanon, which focuses on delivering renewable energy, clean water, and sustainable agriculture in times of crisis.
Amer studied mechanical engineering at Brown and has an M.Eng. in civil & environmental engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
During his time at Brown, Amer was active in campus life holding leadership roles as the treasurer of Buxton International House and co-president of the Arab Club, and as a volunteer at International Orientation, where he fostered inclusivity and diversity within the University community.
Amer's personal journey is deeply connected to Brown, where he met his wife, Katayoun Shafiee ’00. They reside in London with their daughter Darya and their two cats, Loki and Banksy.
Danish A. Lakhani ’00
ScB’00, Applied Math; Computer Science; Business Economics | M.S. ’04, Stanford University | M.B.A. ’08, Harvard Business School
Danish Ali Lakhani is the founder and CEO of NayaPay, an emerging electronic money institution in Pakistan. Danish and his team are building a two-sided platform to provide digital accounts and payment solutions to the country’s large, young under-banked population and small and medium businesses that primarily transact in cash.
Danish previously built Cybernet and its consumer division, StormFiber, into a leading fiber broadband provider, serving 400,000 households across 25 Pakistani cities.
Additionally, Danish holds the role of chair at the APNIC Foundation, an organization dedicated to fostering a seamless, secure, and resilient internet for the Asia-Pacific region. To achieve this goal, the foundation directs its investments towards infrastructure development, digital inclusion, and knowledge dissemination.
Danish lives in Karachi with his wife, Nazafreen, and their two children.
Anna Lenaker ’19 MPA’20
AB’19, Religious Studies | MPA’20, Public Affairs
Anna Lenaker is currently pursuing her Master of Environmental Management degree at the Yale School of the Environment, specializing in climate change science and solutions. She sees climate change and its disproportionate impacts as the moral issue of her lifetime and is committed to developing and supporting equitable and effective solutions.
A proud first-generation student and Sidney Frank Scholar, Anna received her Master of Public Affairs and undergraduate degree in religious studies from Brown. From her time at Brown, she also received lifelong friends and mentors, an appreciation for learning for learning’s sake, skills for making change, a commitment to creativity, and a love of Spicy Withs.
Anna is an avid reader, walker, and coffee drinker. She loves traveling to new places, sampling new cuisines, and binge-watching Jeopardy! Anna is the author of her memoir “Able to Be Otherwise” and a believer in the power of storytelling to move minds, inspire change, and foster community.
Anna has had many places she’s called home. Some of her favorites include Providence, Rhode Island; Solvang, California; Chico, California; and Oxford, England.
Ashlyn Tsig Lovato ’23 AM’23
Affinity Group Officer
AB’23, Anthropology | AM’23, American Studies
Ashlyn Lovato (she/her) is a first-generation college graduate from Santa Clara Pueblo, NM. She currently serves as the new Campus Life Fellow, after graduating from Brown as a four-year concurrent bachelor's/master's degree recipient. She received her undergraduate degree in linguistic anthropology and her master's degree in American studies. Ashlyn is passionate about Indigenous language, culture, ecologies, and pedagogies pertaining to preservation.
As the Campus Life Fellow, Ashlyn serves as a bridge between Campus Life senior leadership and students by providing student-centered perspectives and leadership while serving as a critical source of direct support and consultation to the senior leadership. Additionally, she manages specific projects and oversees the Campus Life Student Advisory Board, which is a space for student-administrator bi-directional engagement and dialogue over policies, programming, and decision-making related to campus community and student engagement.
During her time as a student, Ashlyn served as a BCSC Native Heritage Series Co-Programmer for three years, a Powwow Committee Co-Chair for two years, and a Bonner Fellow and Royce Fellow with the Swearer Center. Through these roles, Ashlyn was able to communicate and collaborate effectively with campus-wide departments and divisions, internal clubs, as well as external organizations, Tribal nations, and communities to create space and conversation for Indigenous visibility and cultural appreciation.
Aleta Margolis ’89, P’20
AB’89, Theatre Arts | M.S. ’91, Northwestern University
Aleta Margolis is the founder and president of the Center for Inspired Teaching, a Washington, D.C.-based NGO that collaborates with teachers to transform the education system into one in which students are taught how, not what, to think. Aleta built upon her Theatre Arts concentration at Brown by developing an improvisation-based approach to training teachers. Inspired Teaching’s programming teaches teachers to embrace the role of “Instigator of Thought” and build students’ curiosity, empathy, and critical thinking skills. Center for Inspired Teaching was named a worldwide Champion of Learning Through Play by the Lego Foundation, has won two Webby/Anthem awards, and has taught educators in the United States, India, Myanmar, Turkey, South Africa, and Ukraine.
Aleta is a former public school teacher and professor of education, and is the creator of the blog “Hooray For Monday.” She is an Ashoka Fellow who is committed to investing in teachers. At Brown, Aleta served on the Women’s Leadership Council, is a mentor with the Brown Women’s Launch Pad, and is a frequent speaker on campus with the Swearer Center. Aleta and her husband, Michael Brodsky, live in Washington, D.C. and are the parents of two fabulous young adult daughters, Mira and Isabel (Brown Class of 2020).
Jonathan Mooney ’00
Affinity Group Officer
AB’00, Literature and Culture in English
Jonathan Mooney is a dyslexic neurodivergent writer, speaker, and social entrepreneur who did not learn to read until he was twelve years old. He holds an honors degree from Brown in English literature (a word he still can’t spell), is a Harry S. Truman Scholar for Public Service, and was a finalist for a Rhodes Scholarship. He is the author of three books, “Learning Outside the Lines” (Simon and Schuster, 2000), “The Short Bus” (Henry Holt and Co., 2007), and the subtlety titled “Normal Sucks: How to Live, Learn, and Thrive Outside the Lines” (Henry Holt and Co., 2019).
A lifelong social entrepreneur, Jonathan has created and co-founded a number of social ventures including in MOCHAMP’s basement and, with the support of the amazing Barrett Hazeltine, Eye-To-Eye National—a movement-building organization for students with learning and attention differences. He is currently the co-founder of The Divergent Fund, a venture philanthropy investing in high-impact social ventures that support and empower neurodivergent individuals and their families, and speaks across the nation about neurodiversity and disability justice.
Alina Moran ’93
ScB’93, Engineering | M.P.A. ’01, Baruch College
Alina Moran, MPA, FACHE, FAB, is president of Dignity Health - California Hospital Medical Center, a 318-bed general acute care facility in Los Angeles. A recognized leader in excellence, innovation, and community service, the hospital provides a full continuum of acute care services, including a level II trauma center, a state-of-the-art cardiac catheterization lab, women's birthing center, level III neonatal intensive care unit, seven operating suites, and a free-standing Los Angeles Center for Women’s Health. Moran previously served as CEO at NYC Health + Hospitals/Metropolitan, a 338-bed acute care facility in East Harlem, NY, as well as chief patient growth officer for the NYC Health + Hospitals system.
A veteran health care executive with more than 20 years of experience, Moran is a seasoned, dynamic leader with a diverse background in hospital administration. She has a remarkable record of achievement, having demonstrated success in initiating culture change with a focus on decreasing re-admission rates, improving safety measures, and implementing strategic initiatives.
Moran studied mechanical engineering at Brown and earned a master’s in public administration from Baruch College. She is an active leader in her community and was involved in the establishment of the Rhode Island Political Action Committee and Brown University Latino Alumni Council. In addition, Moran has been honored by many prestigious national organizations and was named in 2018 to the inaugural list of “Notable Women in Health Care” by Crain’s New York Business.
Raised in the Bronx, Moran now lives in Encino, California, with her husband and two children.
Hieu Nguyen ’02
Affinity Group Officer
AB’02, Comparative Literature | M.Sc. ’04, London School of Economics | M.B.A. ’09, INSEAD
Hieu has recently returned to the U.S. after spending the past 20 years living and working in London, Hong Kong, and Singapore. He is currently taking a career break, having previously worked for multinational corporations in finance leadership roles. Recently, he was the finance director for Southeast Asia at Brown-Forman, and previously an M&A and corporate development manager covering Asia Pacific, Middle East, and North Africa for Diageo. Hieu began his career working in capital markets and financial institutions advisory at the European bank, BNP Paribas.
In addition to serving on the BAA Board of Governors, Hieu proudly serves as vice president of finance for A4 (Asian/Asian American Alumni Alliance). While at Brown, Hieu double-concentrated in business economics and comparative literature and wrote his honors dissertation on the bildungsroman narrative as interpreted in 19th-century French and 20th-century American fiction. He was also involved in the transfer student and the RUE (Resumed Undergraduate Education) orientation program.
Originally from Andover, MA, Hieu currently calls Los Angeles home. During the COVID lockdown, Hieu picked up the sport of Olympic weightlifting as an amateur and his goal is to be able to clean and jerk 100 kg (220 lbs) one day.
Andrea M. O'Neal ’03
Affinity Group Officer
AB’03, Business Economics
Andrea M. O'Neal brings over 20 years of experience championing the advancement of historically and socially marginalized communities with expertise in institutional equity, racial and economic justice, organizational behavior, and cultural change management.
She is a presidential appointee of the Biden-Harris administration, serving as the first-ever senior advisor to the administrator for equity at the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA). O'Neal is a recognized thought leader in the diversity, equity, and inclusion space with a career spanning global Wall Street, social impact, and advisory services for C-suite executive teams.
As a former capital markets investment banker, including four years abroad structuring cross-border IPOs in Europe and Asia, Andrea developed a multicultural business acumen that she leverages to achieve exceptional stakeholder management and metrics-driven results.
As a social sector leader and public official, she is on the front lines of mission-critical work related to breaking down systemic barriers, closing racial wealth gaps, fostering equitable outcomes, and operationalizing high-performing, culturally competent leadership practices.
Andrea has served as a research advisory committee member for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Equitable Futures Project, in the ambassadors program for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture (NMAAHC), as board chair of the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts (MoCADA), a member of Brown's President's Leadership Council, and as president of the Inman Page Black Alumni Council. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Business Insider, and several industry conferences. She has roots in Atlanta, GA, Brooklyn, NY, and currently resides in Washington, D.C.
Petros Perselis ’10
ScB’10, Engineering | M.S. ’12, Stanford University
Petros is currently the vice president of global customer success and a member of the executive leadership team at Cutover, a London and New York-based enterprise software scale-up. In the past, he held leadership positions at software companies Qualtrics and Medallia, prior to and after the companies' IPOs and subsequent acquisitions. Petros started his career in investment banking at Citi in London, where he worked on major deals in the power and energy sectors. He graduated with honors from Brown with an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering and from Stanford University with an MSc in management science and engineering.
Petros is an expert in Go-To-Market strategy and serves as a mentor at Endeavor, a global advisory and accelerator organization for high-impact entrepreneurs, where he frequently advises startups and founders in setting up their customer success teams, as well as in product-market fit and customer acquisition topics.
Petros has a long history of volunteering and community leadership. As a student, he co-founded the National Hellenic Student Association of North America (NHSA) and served as its inaugural treasurer for the first three years. NHSA has been serving as an umbrella for Hellenic student organizations of universities throughout the United States and Canada. More recently, he has been the co-founder of Desmos Policy Institute, a non-profit non-partisan think tank aiming to harness the expertise of the Greek diaspora to make policy recommendations to the Greek state. He also serves in the New Leaders Committee of the Hellenic Initiative. Due to his philanthropic and leadership efforts, Petros was awarded Greek America's 40 Under 40 in 2022. In terms of Brown affiliations, in addition to the BAA Board of Governors, Petros is currently serving as the Class of 2010 president and the treasurer of the Association of Class Leaders.
Cristina Piedrahita ’92, P’25, P’27
AB’92, Economics; Political Science | M.B.A. ’96, MIT
Cristina Piedrahita is an investor with extensive investment experience in listed and non-listed companies, including various funds in Greece and direct investments in a diversified portfolio of private investments.
Her skill set and breadth of experience is derived from over 30 years of investment experience across multiple sectors (technology, telecoms, utilities, retail, food and beverage, materials, financials), geographies (emerging markets, Europe, and the U.S.), and traction with multiple business models (family-owned, for profit, non-profit, public vs. private sector).
From 2002 until 2016, she was a member of the emerging markets team at Morgan Stanley Investment Management where she was the co-portfolio manager for the Latin American Fund and the Latin assets of the emerging markets fund, directly responsible for managing over $3 billion in assets. Prior, she was a Latin American equity analyst at Fidelity Investments, HSBC Asset Management, and Baring Asset Management.
She is a member of various boards including Make a Wish Greece, AFI-Action Finance Initiative (microfinance in Greece), MIT Sloan Alumni, Vice President of the Brown Club of Greece, and an ambassador at Endeavor Greece. In addition, she is an independent member of the investment committee at Halcyon Equity Partners, the first female-led private equity growth fund in Greece. She earned an undergraduate degree in economics and political science from Brown and an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Sloan School of Management.
Scott N. Quigley ’05
AB’05, Political Science | M.B.A. ’15, Harvard Business School | M.P.P. ’15, Harvard Kennedy School
Scott N. Quigley is a principal at Nautic Partners, a private equity firm based in Providence, RI, investing in and partnering with companies in the healthcare, industrial, and business services sectors. Prior to joining Nautic, Scott worked as an investment banker with William Blair & Company and in corporate development for a private equity-backed energy company.
Scott began his career as an Army Ranger Officer, leading teams in airborne and special operations units across the U.S. and during combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Scott earned two Bronze Star Medals for combat leadership. He now serves on Brown University's Veteran Alumni Council and is a term member on the Council on Foreign Relations. Additionally, Scott volunteers his time in support of military veterans transitioning to civilian life.
Scott earned an MBA from Harvard Business School, a master’s in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, where he was a Fellow at the Center for Public Leadership, and an undergraduate degree with honors in political science from Brown. Scott and his wife, Kate, live in Boston with their long-haired Dachshund, Milo.
Orlando E. Rodriguez ’17
AB’17, Education Studies
During his time at Brown, Orlando served on the Class Board as the president of the Class of 2017. Additionally, he worked as an academic coach and summer ambassador. As an alum, Orlando continues to serve as president of his class and is a member of the Association of Class Leaders Board of Directors, where he leads the DEI committee. He is a former member of the BAA Board of Governors and a volunteer for the Alumni Interviewing Program.
Orlando is currently a Google shopping product specialist, where he consults and provides solutions to sales account managers and their clients on complex Google shopping issues. Orlando started at Google as a BOLD intern during the summer before his senior year and joined full-time after graduation as a Google ads associate account strategist.
Tyler R. Rubin ’99
Affinity Group Officer
AB’99, Anthropology | J.D. ’03, University of Southern California | M.C.P. ’13, Rutgers University
Tyler R. Rubin is the director of internal audit for Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), a non-profit community development financial institution that supports community development initiatives and projects through grants, loans, equity investments, and technical assistance.
Tyler obtained his J.D. from the University of Southern California, and spent several years as an attorney specializing in corporate transactions and real estate development projects throughout New York. He later obtained his master's degree in city and regional planning from the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning & Public Policy at Rutgers University, with a dual concentration in real estate and community development, and a certification in historic preservation.
Tyler was awarded the Morgan Stanley/ANHD Community Development Fellowship in its inaugural year, and was also selected for the Mildred Colodny Internship in Historic Preservation Law at the National Trust for Historic Preservation in Washington, D.C.
Prior to joining LISC, Tyler was the director of compliance at New Jersey Community Development Corporation, a nonprofit organization in Paterson focused on neighborhood revitalization through supportive housing and social services. Tyler oversaw administrative and regulatory requirements across the agency, particularly with respect to government housing subsidies and federal, state, and local grant awards.
Tyler is the co-chair of the Brown Alumni Pride Association (BAPA). He has previously served as the vice-chair of his town’s Historic Preservation Commission, a committee leader of his community’s anti-racism advocacy group, and is an active member of his company’s LGBTQI+ affinity group. Tyler lives in Bergen County, N.J. with his husband, Matthew.
Darryl J. Shrock ’86, P’20, P’22.5
AB’86, Organizational Behavior Management | M.B.A. ’88, University of Chicago
Darryl Shrock grew up in Evanston, Illinois. At Brown, he concentrated in organizational behavior and management, founded the Brown Derbies a cappella group, and performed in two musicals.
After Brown, Darryl got his MBA at The University of Chicago in marketing and finance. He has lived in San Francisco, New York, and the D.C. area, working in marketing at American Express and AOL, and for the past 21 years has worked in real estate.
He will celebrate his 30th anniversary with his wife, Pam, in November and they have three fantastic kids. He has held various positions at Brown Clubs, was a regional leader of alumni interviewers, and is currently co-president of the Class of ’86 and honored to join the board of the BAA.
Laura B. Smith ’06
AB’06, Psychology | M.B.A. ’11, Bryant College
Laura is the senior director of parent and family giving at Brown. She has been in her current role since the fall of 2021 and has been a member of the Brown Advancement team for 17 years. In her current role, Laura oversees the parent and family giving team while managing a portfolio of major and principal non-alumni parent prospects and serving as a liaison to campus for all things related to the parent experience. Under Laura’s leadership, the parent and family giving program continues to be the top in the country with record-setting years in 2019 and 2022.
Laura began her career at the Brown University Sports Foundation, focused on athletic fundraising and alumni engagement. She has experience with event and volunteer management, individual fundraising, and program development. She holds an undergradaute degree in psychology from Brown and an MBA from Bryant University.
Outside of Brown, Laura enjoys spending time boating, exercising, volunteering, and finding opportunities to celebrate all the small things in life. She resides in Rhode Island with her husband and two young children, Bryce and Cole.
Kehli H. Woodruff ’94
AB’06, Psychology | M.B.A. ’11, Bryant College
Kehli Harding Woodruff is an entrepreneur and speech language pathologist with over 20 years of experience helping organizations connect with diverse and neurodiverse stakeholders. As principal of Kehli Harding Woodruff Communications, she is passionate about helping organizations create more inclusive and accessible environments and more equitable and operative workplaces. Kehli has a powerful record of driving growth and development for start-up organizations, in both the for-profit and the non-profit sectors. She has led eight business start-ups to success and expansion and has sat on several non-profit boards of directors.
As an avid learner, Kehli holds an undergraduate degree from Brown, an M.P.P. from The University of Michigan Ford School of Public Policy, an M.Sc. from Mercy Graduate School in communication disorders, and executive certificates from the Yale School of Management Women on Boards, University of Berkeley Law School Executive Program in ESG, Harvard Divinity School in community development, and Columbia University in bilingual speech and language in Spanish.
While at Brown, Kehli served as a Minority Peer Counselor and Friend, Senior Class Counsel Officer, and 1994 Commencement Speaker. Since graduation, Kehli has served as an Alumni Class Officer for 25 years, engaged as a representative of the Brown Annual Fund for five years, sat for two terms on the Association of Class Leaders Alumni Board of Directors, and received the Alumni Class Leader award in 2009.
A native of the Bronx, NY, Kehli currently resides in Scarsdale, NY, with her husband and three daughters.
Pamela K. Arya ’84, P’18
Pembroke Associates Council
ScB’84, Geology | M.S. ’92, Johns Hopkins University
Pamela Arya is the vice president of government programs at Iridium, responsible for developing and leading projects to provide innovative uses of Iridium’s satellites and data for Iridium’s government customers. Most recently, Arya led the business development and capture activities for Iridium’s team for the winning GDMS-Iridium SDA Tranche 01 and GMI Contracts. In this new line of business, Iridium will build a ground system and operate satellites for the USG.
Prior to joining Iridium, Arya was an executive director for Applied Minds Inc., a research and development company in Los Angeles specializing in creating a range of new products and services in software, entertainment, electronics, biotechnology, and mechanical design. Arya was a 2001 NRO Technology Fellow and was awarded the IEEE Computer Society Outstanding Contribution Award for her work on interoperable data structure standards.
Arya is currently serving on the Pembroke Center Associates Council and is the representative from that council to the BAA Board. She previously served two terms on the BAA Board as well as a term on the ACCIT board. She lives in McLean, VA, and is the mother of two sons: Adam White ’18 and Andrew White. Devoted to STEM causes for more than 10 years, she has mentored many women through Brown’s Women’s Launch Pad, ACM Grace Hopper Conference, and NCWIT. For fun, she collects vintage glass and is an amateur mixologist.
Ana M. Bermúdez ’86, P’22
Brown Women's Network
AB’86, Health & Society | J.D. ’92, Yale University
Ana M. Bermúdez is the former commissioner for the NYC Department of Probation (DOP; 2014-2022). She was the first openly gay person, first Latina, and second woman to be appointed commissioner of the department. A graduate of Brown University and Yale Law School, Bermúdez began her professional career representing children in family court cases at the Legal Aid Society. For over 20 years, she has been a tireless advocate for children and teenagers involved in the justice system through the development and implementation of strengths-based interventions, the application of restorative and youth development practices, and the designing of programs that ensure successful re-integration for adjudicated juveniles. During her tenure as DOP’s deputy commissioner of juvenile operations from 2010 through 2014, she successfully led city-wide initiatives that focused on improving outcomes for court-involved youth through interdisciplinary collaborations. With her appointment to commissioner in March 2014, she continued to lead the department in its mission to enhance public safety through appropriate individualized and community-based interventions in the lives of people on probation to enable them to permanently exit the justice system.
Prior to joining the DOP in 2010, she was the director of juvenile justice programs at the Children’s Aid Society. She has also worked at CASES (the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services), holding progressively responsible positions: director of training and technical assistance; co-director of community prep high school, a transitional school for court-involved students; and deputy director for court services and case management at CASES’ Court Employment Project, an alternative to incarceration program for adolescents with felony convictions.
Bermúdez is now a consultant in the areas of leadership and management, restorative justice and restorative practices, and juvenile justice and system reform, among others.
James A. Castro MHL’19
School of Professional Studies Alumni
MHL’19, Healthcare Leadership
James Castro leverages his diversified professional background—spanning corporate finance, healthcare strategy, and healthcare policy—to assist healthcare providers in creating sustainable enterprise value prioritizing patient outcomes. Implementing value-based care initiatives designed to reduce the cost of care (e.g., migration from fee-for-service to alternative reimbursement models) while improving patient outcomes is central to his differentiated approach.
Prior to joining legacy FocalPoint, now B. Riley Securities, Castro led strategy and corporate development for a specialized orthopedic care organization and, separately, a full-service reproductive care company (i.e., medical practice, assisted reproductive technologies, cryo-storage, and surgery center). He also has expertise in physician practice management, outsourced pharma and behavioral health (e.g., Autism care, sub-acute mental health, acute psychiatric hospitals, substance use disorder, and addiction treatment). He began his corporate finance career as an investment banker with Houlihan Lokey and its affiliated private equity division, Century Park Capital Partners.
James is recognized with the following distinctions: Winner of Turnaround Consultant of the Year (2016); Winner of Emerging Leaders Award 40 Under 40 (2016); and Los Angeles Business Journal - Most Influential M&A Advisors (2013). He received a undergraduate degree in economics from UCLA, a master's degree in healthcare leadership from Brown University, and an MsC in global healthcare from Oxford University (Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences in partnership with Saïd Business School).
Larry Eichler P’09
Brown University Veterans Alumni Council
B.A. ’80, Tulane University | J.D. ’83, Syracuse University
Larry Eichler is an attorney specializing in real estate and corporate transactional matters. He is also the founder and president of Eichler Realty Company, Inc., a real estate investment and management company. Eichler has also founded, acquired, and sold several businesses.
In 2017, he founded the Brown University Veterans Alumni Council (BUVAC) and currently serves as its co-president. Eichler is also part of a group which recently formed the IBES Alumni & Family Network: a new platform to bring together the global community of passionate, environment-focused Brunonians.
Eichler is an advisor to the RI National Guard. He serves on the board of Professional Facilities Management and has served on the boards of Roger Williams University, Crossroads RI, Cherrystone Angel Group, and Festival Ballet Providence. In 2014, he served as special assistant to Providence mayor Angel Taveras and was acting director of Providence Talks.
Eichler graduated with a B.A. from Tulane University and a J.D. from Syracuse University and resides in Providence, RI with his wife, Alison. They have two sons: David ’09 (vice president, Technology Crossover Ventures) and Daniel (special operations pilot, U.S. Air Force).
Sarah H. Gomel ’06
Association of Class Leaders
AB’06, French Civilization; International Relations | M.LITT., University of St. Andrews
Sarah Hurwit Gomel is a corporate chief of staff with over a decade of experience in software and government technology. She specializes in change management, strategic alignment, scaling operations, and organizational culture, and has experience both as a nonprofit and a strategic consultant. Sarah graduated magna cum laude from Brown with a double concentration in French civilization (honors) and international relations. A course on conflict resolution at Brown sparked an interest that led her to the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, where she earned a master’s in peace and conflict studies in 2011 as an Ernest L. Ransome III Scholar.
Since graduating from Brown, Sarah has enjoyed volunteering for multiple Brown area clubs, the Young Leadership Council of the Brown Annual Fund, her BAF Class Gift Committee, and the Alumni Interviewing Program as an interviewer and area co- chair. She currently serves as a communications co-chair for her class and as the president of Brown’s Association of Class Leaders Board.
An active volunteer in her community, Sarah lives in Atlanta with her husband, David Gomel ’06, and their two children.
Tarek M. Khanachet ’03
Brown Annual Fund
AB’03, Anthropology; Old World Archeology & Art | M.A. ’04, University College London | J.D. ’08, New York University
Tarek Khanachet is a lawyer with Covington & Burling LLP, where he specializes in public policy, government affairs, and sovereign advisory in the Middle East. While at Brown, he studied archaeology and completed three seasons at the Brown excavations in Petra, Jordan. He has been a longtime volunteer, beginning with his senior class gift committee, and has only missed three commencements since he graduated.
Melisa W. Lai-Becker ’94 MD’99
Brown Medical Alumni Association
ScB’94, Applied Mathematics; Biology | MD’99, Medicine
Melisa Lai-Becker is chief of emergency medicine at CHA Everett Hospital. Additionally, Dr. Lai-Becker is the founder and director of medical toxicology at Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA), an attending physician in medical toxicology at Boston Children’s Hospital, and an instructor in emergency medicine at Harvard Medical School. Previously, Dr. Lai-Becker served as a medical officer for the Disaster Medical Assistance Team, and an attending physician within the division of medical toxicology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. She was also associate director of medical/surveillance at the American Association of Poison Control Centers and an attending physician in the emergency department at Mount Auburn Hospital. She is president of the board of the Massachusetts College of Emergency Physicians and an oral board examiner for the American Board of Emergency Medicine.
Dr. Lai-Becker earned an undergraduate degree in applied mathematics and biology as well as a medical degree from Brown. She completed her residency in emergency medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital and a fellowship in toxicology at Boston Children’s Hospital. She also served as a captain and general physician in the Medical Corps for the Rhode Island National Guard.