People of OfC
OfC’s Board of Directors
The meeting of Doug’s passions and convictions made OfC inevitable. His vision for OfC as a forum for teaching sustainable development is a natural combination of his desire to assist communities with improving living conditions and his conviction that the best way to help people is to teach them. OfC results from the spiritual roots of his care for the condition of the world combined with his desire to go someplace warm in the winter. In the mid-’80s, Doug served in Peace Corps in Papua New Guinea advising local government projects. He then got his Master’s of Urban Planning from the University of Washington. As the town planner for Belchertown, Mass., he also serves on several local, regional and state-wide boards to further community and educational development. Doug is the former chair of the Kestrel Land Trust, an Amherst-area land conservation trust, and is active with South Amherst Congregational Church and its outreach work.
Ken is a senior consultant for an international consulting & engineering firm. He served 11 years on the Graduate Faculty of the School of Public Health and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where he is Adjunct Associate Professor and a member of the Dean’s Advisory Board. He received his PhD in Epidemiology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he is Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology. He is also an Adjunct Professor of Environmental Health at the University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC. Ken also attended Dartmouth College, the University of Virginia and the University of Massachusetts.
Cyn grew up in Amherst and went to high school with Doug. She currently lives in Saugerties, New York, with husband, Jim. They have two children–Noah and Chaeli. Her true love (despite her family) is volunteering. She was eager to go to Haiti after the earthquake in 2010, but struggled to find the organization that felt like the right match. Once she learned about OfC, she knew immediately that this was the group for her. Cyn and Chaeli joined OfC for the close of Lekol Dete in August, 2011, and both fell in love with the experience, the people and the culture. OfC has become a big part of Cyn’s life and and she continually strives to support OfC’s programs. Cyn feels honored to be part of this amazing group of individuals and looks forward to nurturing the growth of OfC.
Rutherford grew up in Simon, Haiti (the neighborhood surrounding the Maranatha school) and offers deep local knowledge. Rutherford has lived in La Vega, Dominican Republic for several years and earned a degree in Engineering. He worked as a teacher of multiple languages (Spanish, French, English, Creole) at the Christian School of La Vega and still serves as a subsitute teacher. Despite the distance, he almost always makes the two-day trip by bus to be with our groups. Rutherford has a beautiful soul and we are graced to have his friendship.
Edilson Timothe, Haitian Project Coordinator (Les Cayes)
Edilson is a gracious host and works hard to manage OfC’s projects. We are blessed to have his attention and the excellent care of OfC’s programs. Edilson is Timothe’s son and like his dad, he is dynamic, intelligent, funny, caring, and attentive to every detail.
Pam Albertson, Treasurer
Having spent 20 years living in many countries via State Department postings, Pam and her husband, Steve Hartwell, settled near Amherst. Pam is glad to use her accounting experience to assist OfC. Beyond OfC, Pam was on the board of US National Committee for UNWomen (the United Nations Development Fund for Women) for several years. Presently she is treasurer for Zonta of Quaboag Valley. She continues her work as an accountant for a private accounting firm.
Elizabeth Mundt, Manager
Elizabeth has over 20 years of experience as an office manager and project accounting specialist for an international consulting & engineering firm.
Wilbert serves as the Assistant Director of Lekòl Dete (OfC’s annual summer school) as well as the OfC liaison to the Institution Mixte Maranatha de Simon. He is attending the American School of the Caribbean-Haiti pursuing a degree in engineering.
OfC’s Advisory Board
Mtr. Amos is the Founder and Headmaster of Institution Mixte Maranatha de Simon in Haiti. He is also Director and Co-Founder of Lekòl Dete. Maranatha, begun in 1998, allows “Restavek” children (indentured servants, children without parents or abandoned by their parents who are allowed to stay with other families in exchange for labor such as cooking, cleaning and childcare) to attend class in the afternoons, after the regular school day.
David R Buchanan, DrPH
Professor, Community Health Education; Director, Division of Community Health Studies; Director, Institute for Global Health; Full Professor of Community Health Education, School of Public Health and Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts. David earned his Master’s and his doctorate in health education from the School of Public Health at the University of California. His primary research interests include public health ethics; community-based participatory research; education programs; and international health.
Dave is one of the founders of OfC and was instrumental in guiding and shaping the organization as a Director (2008-2010). He has been a youth leader for nearly forty years, with over 25 of those as Young Life’s area director in Amherst. Dave has brought teenagers to Haiti, Mexico, the Navajo reservation, Bahamas, New Orleans, Miami and more to learn about needs and how to address them. He has also taught auto mechanics and been a high school wrestling coach. Dave is a true spiritual leader, living out the tenets of his Christian faith in all he does through his devotion to loving all people and his commitment to serve where he sees needs.
Joan Paul, Esq.
After a career in tax and joint venture law in the Silicon Valley, Joan came to live in the quiet of Amherst with her husband, Bruce Schaeffer. Joan is a member of the Massachusetts and California bars and has a private practice in Amherst. During a previous career as a mathematician, Joan was a volunteer teacher in a special program teaching math to underprivileged elementary school students. This experience interested Joan in creative education as a tool for effecting meaningful change. She finds the energy, creativity and potential effects of the OfC mission very appealing and is pleased to have the opportunity to be part of growing this organization.
OfC begins with Timothe. Ken and Doug met Timo in the Dominican Republic where Timothe was a French language teacher at the La Vega Christian School. It was here where the idea of OfC began. It was Timo’s love for the Haitian people, especially those in his home region of Les Cayes, that inspired and continues to inspire OfC’s work in Haiti. He also founded the Ouragan Football Club (soccer) in Simon, Les Cayes, and for over ten years was Haiti’s representative in the International Sports Coalition. He was also a youth leader with a long affiliation with the international organization, Young Life, and was an accomplished basket maker. Timo’s acute attention to every detail, his knowledge of his area, his dynamism and effusive personality, his good humor and his endless energy resulted in more accomplishments than can be measured. Until his death, he served as the OfC Haitian Project Coordinator.