Organizational Leadership

Ron Israel

Founder and Executive Director


Ron Israel is a leader in the “eld of human capacity development and education, both in the formal and non formal sectors. He formerly headed Education Development Center’s (EDC) International Development Division. He has worked with groups of scholars and teachers from countries around the world, facilitating projects within a broad array of cultural settings. He has more than 20 years of consulting and project management experience in the “elds of education, health, the environment, democracy and civil society programs, and has consulted for clients including the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), United Nations Development Program, UNESCO, UNICEF, World Health Organization (WHO), and the World Bank.

Ash Hartwell

Co-Founder and Secretary
Ash Hartwell has served as an education advisor to USAID’s Africa Bureau, UNICEF, CARE, and the World Bank. He was a member of the Board of Trustees of the 21st Century Learning Initiative, a transnational program to synthesize the best of research into the nature of human learning. In 2002, he joined the faculty at the Center for International Education, where he focuses on learning in post conflict situations, educational policy and planning, and alternative learning systems. He has extensive experience evaluating the impact of international development programs.

Hisham Jabi

Co-Founder and Board Member


Hisham Jabi has been leading large-scale public and private initiatives in international development in the Middle East and in the United States since 1993. Mr. Jabi’s areas of expertise include youth development, entrepreneurship, information technology, knowledge management, organizational learning, service learning and community service. He started MABCO, one of the leading information technology companies in the Middle East. In 2004, he launched and directed the Ruwwad Project to provide leadership, livelihood and civic engagement support for Palestinian Youth. Currently, Mr. Jabi is a Senior Associate at Management Systems International (MSI), leading their efforts in the areas of positive youth development and knowledge management for the MENA Region.

Liz Long

Board Member and Eco-entrepreneur
Liz Long is the co-founder of Bag the Habit, a company that designs and produces a variety of reusable shopping solutions. She is also the lead consultant for Maker’s Row Labs; guiding new designers about how to successfully create, source, and manufacture their products. Liz teaches regularly about entrepreneurship through partnerships with Skillshare, HOW Design University and other learning platforms.

Jacob Korenblum

Board Member and Social Media Advisor


Jacob leads Souktel’s growing team, building on his past experience managing economic development and emergency relief projects for US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) projects. Fluent in Arabic and French, Jacob has worked in the emergency aid sectors in the Middle East, East Africa, South Asia, and the Caribbean. He is a frequent panelist on technology, development, and labor markets–with speaking engagements ranging from the GSMA Mobile World Congress to the World Bank Human Development Forum. He has co-authored a chapter in the sector publication “Mobile Technologies for Conflict Management” and has written articles on mobile technology for the MIT Innovations Journal, CNBC Online, and the Overseas Development Institute. The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Fast Company and the UK’s Guardian newspaper have profiled his work as a Souktel co-founder. Jacob holds an Ed.M. from Harvard University, where he also served as a Harvard Reynolds Foundation Fellow in Social Enterprise from 2005-06.

Nancy Devine

Co-Founder and Board Treasurer
Nancy Devine is Vice President and Director of the West and Central Africa Regional Center in EDC’s International Development Division, where she also helps lead the Basic Education Team. She has more than 25 years of experience in leadership positions with nonprofit organizations, working in education and youth development in the United States and Africa. In her current role, Devine designs and manages projects in the areas of basic education, community participation to improve education and youth programs. Speciffically, she provides technical and strategic oversight to education programs in Mali, Ghana, and the Philippines. Prior to joining EDC, she held positions at World Education as Senior Advisor for increasing the role of civil society in education and as West Africa Regional Director and Country Director in Mali.

Angela Betancourt

TGCI Digital Media Editor & Member Engagement Coordinator


Angela Betancourt is a global communications specialist with over 12 years’ experience developing, managing and executing comprehensive, integrated communication campaigns and strategies within the US and international markets.  Angela has worked with businesses, organizations, and government leaders to help them achieve their communication goals. Last year Angela completed a two-year contract as the communications manager on a post-Ebola UK Aid funded private sector development program in Sierra Leone called Sierra Leone Opportunities for Business Action (SOBA).  Angela holds a Masters Degree in Global Strategic Communications from Georgetown University and a Bachelors degree in Public Relations from Barry University. She is also a 2018 Summer Fellow of the Georgetown University-Santander Bank Partnership on Social Economy.