Meet Our Staff & Board of Directors
|Staff||Board of Directors||Board Observers|
|Gina Harman||Brad Henderson||Peter Kip Read, Jr|
|Shaolee Sen||Catherine Quense||Anne Haines Yatskowitz|
|Executive Vice President||Director||Observer|
|Laura Kozien||Emile Cambry, Jr.||Elizabeth Christine Schott|
|Senior Director of Marketing & Communications||Director||Observer|
|Ash Kosiewicz||Jonathan Brereton||Henry Lanier|
|Director of Communications||Director||Observer|
|Gretchen Ruethling||Henry Miller||Rose Mary Fry|
|Director of Corporate Partnerships||Director||Observer|
|Daphne Adam||Michael Schlein|
|Principal Manager of Development & Operations||Director|
|Jane Garcia Buhks||Paul Quintero|
|Principal Specialist of Marketing & Communications||Director|
|Gabrielle Sena||Nick Talwar|
|Board Liaison & Special Assistant||Director|
U.S. Network Staff
CEO, Accion U.S. Network
Gina Harman is the CEO of Accion’s U.S. Network, the only nationwide nonprofit microfinance and small-business lending network in the United States. A longtime proponent of social justice, she believes passionately in helping hard-working, determined people take control of their economic future so they can provide for themselves and their families while contributing to their communities.
Gina began her career in the nonprofit sector, serving in leadership roles including Executive Director of the Central Astoria Community Development Organization and Executive Director of the Washington Square Day Care Cooperative. After 12 years working for nonprofits, Gina honed her business leadership skills at Harman International, eventually serving as President of their $600 million consumer division.
In 2002, she joined the board of directors of Accion New York while working at Harman. She joined Accion full time in 2008, bringing her commitment to the nonprofit sector full circle after more than 20 years.
Gina holds a B.A. from the State University of New York, Empire State College, and is a graduate of the Nonprofit Management program at Columbia University. She has served as an advisor to the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Working Groups at CGI America since 2010 and was named to Fast Company’s League of Extraordinary Women 2012.
Shaolee Sen serves as Executive Vice President for the Accion U.S. Network since 2011. In this role, she has elevated the work of microfinance in the U.S. by developing national marketing, communications, and CSR programs; promoting financial and governance standards; and pioneering collaboration within the industry to drive efficiency and scale.
Throughout her career, Shaolee has worked in managing public-private partnerships and startup ventures within nonprofits. Before joining the Accion team, Shaolee served as Marketing and Communications Director at Opportunity Fund Northern California. There, she managed a re-branding and created the first Microfinance USA conference. She also worked at The Bronx Defenders, establishing the Parent Advocate role and securing the seed funding to start a family court practice.
Shaolee holds an MBA from the Haas School of Business, UC-Berkeley and a BA from Barnard College, Columbia University. She was a 2013 Aspen Institute Emerging Leaders in Microbusiness (ELM) Fellow, a program aimed at identifying executive leadership in the small business field to enact collaboration and progress.
Laura Kozien is the Director of Marketing and Communications for Accion’s U.S. Network, the only nationwide microfinance and small-business lending network in the United States. In her role, Laura is responsible for building organizational awareness through branding, communications, and publicity efforts.
Passionate about Accion’s work and the impact that it has on small business owners from coast-to-coast, Laura has spent her career at Accion in various marketing and communications roles. She joined Accion in New York as an Americorps* VISTA volunteer in 2004 and served as Communications Director at Accion East and Online before joining the U.S. Network team in 2011.
Originally from Utica, NY, Laura holds a BA in International Studies from Bentley University in Waltham, MA. She resides in Brooklyn, NY.
Ash Kosiewicz serves as Director of Communications for the Accion U.S. Network. In his role, Ash is responsible for the organization's communications strategy and external communications.
Prior to joining the network, Ash worked at the Latino Economic Development Center in Washington, DC. At LEDC, he helped rebrand the organization and served as lead organizer of a community coalition fighting for the fair redevelopment of a small business hub. Ash has also worked on a variety of projects in Latin America, including raising funds for the construction of a health center in Santa Lucia, Ecuador and storytelling for the Peruvian Forensic Anthropology Team in Lima, Peru.
Ash holds a Masters of Arts in Latin American Studies from the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Texas at Austin.
Gretchen Ruethling is Director of Corporate Partnerships for the Accion U.S. Network. In her role, Gretchen manages the day-to-day operations of Accion's signature corporate and referral partnerships.
For nearly 10 years, Gretchen has dedicated her career to tackling global development challenges across non-profit organizations, the private sector, and the federal government. Most recently, she worked as Acting Deputy Director in the Office of Latin America at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), where she built relationships among Washington stakeholders to advance development goals in Latin America, advised senior leadership on development issues in the region, and provided strategy and program planning guidance to field offices.
Gretchen earned an MPA from Cornell University and a BS in Journalism from Northwestern University. She is a former Presidential Management Fellow and a former contributor to The New York Times.
Daphne Adam came to microfinance through her work in the public health and international development sector. She believes strongly in supporting work that provides individuals with the tools they need to take control of their own success. As Development and Operations Manager, Daphne supports both the fundraising and the monitoring and evaluation work of the U.S. Network office.
Prior to joining the Accion U.S. Network in April 2012, Daphne combined her interests in global health and microcredit through work with Partners in Health (PIH), a nonprofit organization that provides integrated care to low-income patients with chronic diseases both domestically and internationally. During this time, Daphne managed the expansion of a microcredit project tailored to the needs of PIH patients from the urban capital of Lima to the rural coastal province of Pisco.
Daphne holds a Master of Public Health in International Health and Development from the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, and a Bachelor of Arts in Peace and Conflict Studies from the University of California at Berkeley.
Gabrielle joined Accion as the Board Liaison and Special Assistant in April 2014. She is responsible for working directly with the Accion U.S. Network’s Board of Directors in addition to supporting the CEO and VP of Strategy and Development.
Previous nonprofit development experience includes working as a Development Intern at Ashoka Argentina and also as the Corporate Values and Strategy Intern at the Aspen Institute Business & Society Program.
A Tampa native, Gabrielle holds a BA from New York University in Global Liberal Studies, and a minor in Social Entrepreneurship. She completed the RFK Compass Sustainable Investing Program with the Earth Institute at Columbia University in Spring 2014.
U.S. Network Board of Directors
Partner and Managing Director, BCG
Brad Henderson is a Partner and Managing Director in the Chicago office of the Boston Consulting Group. He rejoined the Boston Consulting Group in 2003 and worked as a summer consultant in the BCG Chicago office in 2001 and as a summer Associate in 2000. He spent 2006 in BCG’s Mumbai office as part of the BCG Ambassador program. Brad earned an MSc in Economic History and an MBA from Oxford University where he was a Rhodes Scholar. He earned an MA in social science and BA in economics from University of Chicago. He has also previously worked in the Fixed Income Currency and Commodities division of Goldman Sachs in London. In his leisure time he enjoys writing, basketball, traveling, and reading.
Consultant on Special Projects, Accion
Cathy Quense served as Accion's chief financial officer from 1985 until 2008, during which time Accion’s balance sheet grew from less than $1 million to over $250 million. She acted as interim CEO in 2009 and then served as Accion's Chief Administrative Officer, managing global office operations and information systems, and risk and performance management programs. She has been involved in strategic organizational planning and development for Accion International and for it’s microfinance partners overseas and in the United States. Cathy currently serves on the board of directors of the Accion U.S. Network and NetHope, and acts as a consultant on special projects. She is also involved in the Investment Committee of Social Venture Partners, Boston. Cathy holds a Master of Public Administration degree with a concentration in international development from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, and a Bachelor of Arts in Latin American studies from Yale University.
Founder and CEO, BLUE 1647
Emile Cambry, Jr. received his Bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of Chicago and his MBA from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management. Emile is a Professor at North Park University and was recognized as one of the Top 50 Business School Professors. Emile has experience in Investment Banking for J.P. Morgan Chase. His films have been licensed by HBO and Cinemax, as well as Showtime.
Emile is the Founder and CEO of social entrepreneurship project, the 21st Century Youth Project. Emile is an Ideas Award Fellow as well as a Gold Medal Edison Awards winner, recognizing “visionaries” and innovators who seek to “write a new chapter in American innovation history.” The 21st Century Youth Project was recognized as the most innovative educational program in America by the Edison Awards (2012). Emile is also a board member of DePaul University's Social Enterprise Collective.
Emile Cambry Jr founded the technology and entrepreneurship incubator, BLUE1647 as well as is president of the Chicago International Social Change Film Festival. Emile is the Chair of Congresswoman Kelly's STEM Innovation Council and was appointed to the City of Chicago's Technology Diversity Council, appointed by Rahm Emanuel. Emile was named Crains 2014 Chicago Tech 50, recognizing the top tech professionals impacting the technology landscape in Chicago.
Chief Executive and Lending Officer, Accion Chicago
Jonathan Brereton has served as Chief Executive Officer of Accion Chicago since October 2004. During his tenure the organization has made more than 1,500 loans and disbursed $12 million into the local economy, supporting small business owners and stabilizing neighborhoods. Accion Chicago is one of the top ten microlenders in the country and is a member of the Accion U.S. Network, a collaboration of the five regional Accion affiliates to maximize resources nationally. Accion Chicago operates with a staff of 25 and serves the state of Illinois and Northwest Indiana. Brereton also manages Accion’s new first-of- its-kind initiative, the Chicago Microlending Institute (CMI) which, in essence, is training the organization’s competition to help meet the growing demand for microlending in the region.
Brereton joined Accion in November of 2000 as a Community Outreach Coordinator through the AmeriCorps*VISTA program. Following his year of service, he became Director of Operations, expanding Accion’s outreach through public, private and community partnerships. In addition to his Chief Executive role Brereton is also the organization’s Chief Lending Officer. In 2013 Mayor Emanuel invited him to serve on the City of Chicago’s Small Business Advisory Council. Brereton has been named an SBA Financial Champion of the Year, and a Chicago Ideas Week Fellow. He graduated from Wheaton College with a degree in Business and Economics.
Chief Operating Officer, Goodman Media International
Henry L. Miller is a Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors of Accion, the global microfinance organization, and Chief Operating Officer of Goodman Media International, the award-winning public relations firm based in New York City. He has more than 25 years’ experience in communications and public affairs – managing the reputations, visibility and public policy issues of corporations, government agencies and nonprofit organizations, both in the United States and internationally. Prior to his career in public relations, he served as a political advisor to two U.S. Ambassadors to the United Nations (Andrew Young and Donald McHenry) and two mayors of U.S. cities (Andrew Young in Atlanta and David Dinkins in New York City).
At Goodman Media, he has overseen the firm’s work for such clients as The New York Times, International Herald Tribune, Dow Jones, PBS, Telemundo, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation, Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Waterkeeper Alliance, and Access Project for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria. He has also overseen communications for such prominent initiatives as the 100th Anniversary Convention of the NAACP, the launch of the most recent redesign of The Wall Street Journal, the record-setting U.S. launches of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, the landmark 100,000 Lives Campaign of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, the response of the consortium of major television news organizations to the election-night miscalling of the results of the 2000 U.S. presidential election, and numerous other award-winning initiatives.
President and CEO, Accion
Michael Schlein is the President and CEO of Accion, a global nonprofit dedicated to building a financially inclusive world. A world pioneer in microfinance, Accion has helped build 63 microfinance institutions in 32 countries, which currently reach millions of clients and provide them with the financial tools that can help improve their lives. Today, Accion has operations and investments throughout much of Latin America, Africa, India, China and the Philippines.
In addition, Accion provides early- and seed-stage venture capital to new companies that promote disruptive innovation in financial services at the base of the pyramid. Also, Accion created and supports the Center for Financial Inclusion, an outward-focused think tank dedicated to tackling industry-wide challenges. For example, the Smart Campaign is the first global consumer protection campaign focused on those living in poverty.
Michael brings nearly 30 years of extensive international banking, management and public service experience to his role as President and CEO of Accion. As President of Citigroup’s International Franchise Management, Mr. Schlein managed the bank’s network of 100 Chief Country Officers. Before that, Michael ran communications, philanthropy, government relations, branding and human resources for Citigroup. He served as Chief of Staff at the US Securities and Exchange Commission in the Clinton Administration and in New York’s City Hall in the Dinkins and Koch Administrations. He began his career in investment banking. Mr. Schlein has graduate and undergraduate degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa.
CEO, Accion East and Online
Paul joined Accion as CFO and Interim CEO in 2007 with over 15 years of experience in investment banking, public accounting and community development investment experience. In his first year, he helped raised an all-time high of $2.6 million grant dollars. In 2008, Paul was promoted to CFO and COO and was a key point-person in the historic cross-state combination that tripled the number of urban office centers and expanded the service footprint to include over thirty states. In 2009, Paul implemented a new risk assessment system that would dramatically improve portfolio delinquency and performance. In 2010, he managed a $2.7 million turnaround in bottom line results, moving Accion from a net income deficit to a surplus. In 2011, he assumed the role of CEO, appointed a new management team and led the organization through a strategic planning effort focused on growing the lending mission over the next three years. He was a CPA with a BA in business administration and accounting from the University of Washington. He was selected as a fellow from the Robert F. Toigo Foundation and received an MBA from Columbia Business School.
General Manager, Amazon Lending
Nick Talwar is the General Manager of Amazon Lending, leading Amazon’s global expansion into the lending industry. He previously led Visa's credit card business in North America and spent several years at Citi, with his last role as Country Manager for Citibank in Sweden. He began his professional career at the management consulting firm Bain & Company and worked at Schwab Bank, where he was a Founding Director and ran the liabilities business. Talwar has a personal interest in microfinance and has served on the board of MYC4, as an adviser to Kiva and worked as the Chief Revenue Officer of Prosper, a peer-to-peer lender. He also serves on the advisory board of the National Outdoor Leadership School, is an elected member of the 2013 class of Young Global Leaders by the World Economic Forum, and is a term member at the Council on Foreign Relations. Talwar has a BS in International Politics from Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service and an MBA from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School.
Senior Technical Advisor, PCI Global
Sean Carpenter has worked for PCI (www.pciglobal.org) since 2005, where he serves as the organization’s Senior Technical Advisor for Agribusiness and Microenterprise, supporting agriculture, microfinance and economic development programs in 16 countries across Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia and Africa. Sean has more than fifteen years of experience supporting micro small and medium (MSME) enterprise development, microfinance and agriculture value-chain development, and he has lived and worked in Asia, Latin America and Africa. Sean holds a BA from Michigan State University and a MBA from the Thunderbird School of Global Management.
Sean Harper is an entrepreneur and investor working at the intersection of technology and finance. Most recently he joined 2Checkout, an international payments processor, as part of the new management team brought in with a private equity buyout, where he runs product and engineering.
Partner, Goodwin Procter
Principal, REDW LLC
Ray has been a Principal with REDW since 2003. Ray has more than 30 years of experience in public accounting. His broad range of experience covers various public and private industries, including manufacturing, construction, distribution, financial services, and healthcare, among others.
Ray has substantial experience and expertise evaluating and advising on mergers and acquisitions, complex financial transactions, risk assessment, internal control structure, regulatory compliance, forensic investigations, and delivering expert testimony, in addition to traditional auditing.
Prior to joining REDW in 2003, Ray was a career professional with Arthur Andersen LLP. After graduation from California State University Northridge, he started with Andersen in Los Angeles and relocated to Albuquerque in 1984 to head up Andersen’s assurance and business advisory services. In 1994, he became Managing Partner of Andersen’s Albuquerque office and served in that capacity until his retirement from Andersen.
Ray provides volunteer leadership in several community organizations, including Accion New Mexico · Arizona · Colorado, Accion U.S. Network, Albuquerque Economic Development, Albuquerque Museum Foundation, University of New Mexico Foundation and United Way of Central New Mexico.
U.S. Network Board Observers
Senior Vice President, American Chartered Bank
Peter Kip Read, Jr. is a Senior Vice President at American Chartered Bank, a privately held banking institution serving small and middle market businesses. Read has been with American Chartered Bank for ten years as a commercial lender. Prior to American Chartered Bank, he worked at American National Bank as a commercial lender for seven years and in the Endowment market segment in the Master Trust Division of Northern Trust Bank.
Read graduated from Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts, with a double degree in Finance and Entrepreneurial Studies. He is chair of the Accion Chicago board of directors. He grew up in Shaker Heights, Ohio, is married and lives in Glenview with his wife and two daughters.
President & CEO, Accion New Mexico · Arizona · Colorado
Anne Haines Yatskowitz is the principal founder and President/CEO of Accion New Mexico · Arizona · Colorado, a micro-lending and community development organization headquartered in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Anne currently serves as a director on the board of the Denver Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. She is also a member of the International Women’s Forum New Mexico.
Named one of New Mexico’s “Top Performing CEO’s,” “Women of Influence” and “Top 100 Power Brokers” by Albuquerque Business First, Anne is the recipient of a number of honors including a humanitarian award and a Governor’s Award for Outstanding Women. She has a B.A. in Psychology from Wesleyan University and a Master of Management degree from the Atkinson Graduate School of Management of Willamette University.
Executive Director, Accion San Diego
Ms. Schott joined Accion San Diego in 2004 and as Executive Director is currently responsible for overall developmental and operational areas of the organization, in addition to board development, human resources, and fundraising. She brings ten years of project and organizational development, strategic marketing and public relations experience to the organization. When she first joined the Accion San Diego team, she worked as Marketing Coordinator and Director of Operations until taking on the role of Executive Director in early 2008. Prior to Accion San Diego, Ms. Schott worked with various public relations, marketing and event firms where she managed client portfolios, campaigns and communication efforts for primarily small businesses and non-profit organizations.
Since working with Accion San Diego, she has participated in the small business organizations and committees including service in Net Impact, the SD Chamber Small Business Advocacy Committee, SD Microfinance Alliance, the Torrey Pines Bank Community Reinvestment Board, the Comerica Community Advisory Board, the Accion U.S. Network Board, and the CA Association for Microenterprise Opportunity (CAMEO) Board of Directors. She received her B.A. in Communications with a Minor in Spanish from the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC. She is also a graduate of the Fieldstone Foundation’s Executive Learning Group Leadership Training Program and currently enrolled in their Coaching Program.
Community Development Finance Consultant, Forsyth Street Advisors
Henry Lanier retired after more than 40 years of experience in community organizing, community development finance and investment banking. Most recently Henry worked as a principal at Forsyth Street Advisors where he worked with CDFIs, foundations and depositary institutions on financing affordable housing, primary health care facilities, energy efficiency loans and other community development finance transactions. Previously, he worked with the Low Income Investment Fund, where he developed New Markets Tax Credit transactions, an off balance sheet affordable housing revolving credit agreement, and a structured loan fund to provide permanent financing for charter schools. Before this Henry spent 25 years with the First Boston Corporation and Lehman Brothers, where he was a managing director in charge of the Housing Finance Group, as well as President of Lehman Housing Capital, a syndicator of the Federal Low Income Housing Tax Credit. In the 1970's, Henry established a tenant-controlled CDC in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and ran several community-based programs for what is now the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development.
Nonprofit Consultant, Degrees of Work
Rose Mary Fry is a native of Ohio and she received an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education from Ohio Dominican College and a graduate degree in Staff and Organizational Development from Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. She has thirty-five years experience in the education, nonprofit, and for profit sectors. Since September, 2010, she has worked as a nonprofit consultant focusing on training and consulting services to new and established nonprofit organizations. Her previous position was as founding Executive Director of the Texas Nonprofit Management Assistance Network, a 501(c)(3) organization that helped identify and meet the needs of Texas nonprofits through work with nonprofit resource centers and academic providers in Texas. Previously, she was Executive Director of the Nonprofit Resource Center of Texas in San Antonio, the oldest resource center in the state.
Her special interests are organizational change, the intersection of the nonprofit and for profit worlds, and the facilitation of small and large group meetings. She has been involved in the nonprofit sector as a volunteer for approximately thirty-three years with particular interest in the arts, education, and women and children’s issues. She was the first Licensed Consultant for the Standards for Excellence program in Texas, and she is the only Licensed Consultant with this credential in the state.
Rose Mary serves as a Board Member of Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas, Co-Chair of Say Si Leadership Council, a member of Impact San Antonio, and a member of San Antonio 100, and a member of Friends of Communities in Schools. Previously she served as Board President of Accion Texas Inc., Board President of Impact San Antonio, Board President of Texas Public Radio, Campaign Chair of Say Si’s Capital Campaign, President of the Hollow at Inwood Homeowners Association, and Chair of the National Alumni Advisory Board for Ohio Dominican University in Columbus, Ohio. She is a 2009 graduate of Class V of the Masters Leadership Program in San Antonio and Bexar County.