Board of Directors
Dr. Susan Nedza is Senior Vice President of Clinical Outcomes Management at MPA Healthcare Solutions, Inc. She is an emergency physician and healthcare executive with experience at the American Medical Association, Anthem, Inc. and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Susan attended Gannon University and is a graduate of the Stritch School of Medicine of Loyola University. In addition, she received her MBA from the Kellogg, Graduate School of Business of Northwestern University.
Susan visited Olancho with a mission team in 2015, and was impressed by the drive and the competencies of those on the ground. She could see the sustainability of the mission, as efforts continue even when teams return home. Susan joined the Olancho Aid Board of Directors in 2015. She shares a passion for volunteer service in Latin and South America with her husband Dr. Oswaldo Lastres.
Susan has served as Board Chair of the Hinsdale Public Library and as President of the Board of Maria High School. She is a trustee both at Gannon University and the Juvenile Protective Association, based in Chicago. She is a member of the Advisory Board for the Master’s Program in Bioinformatics, University of Chicago.
Rob Privette, DVM, Treasurer
Rob is a retired Veterinarian from Kennewick, Washington, who primarily treated dogs, cats, and exotics over the last 35 years.
In 2007, after a year of discernment, Rob and his wife, Kristi, each took a leave of absence from their jobs to spend a year in Juticalpa, Honduras volunteering with the Olancho Aid Foundation. During that year, Rob found himself serving in various capacities but primarily focusing on teaching English at the Catholic University in Juticalpa and doing administrative work for Olancho Aid. Rob worked to form Olancho Aid into a corporation, to apply for tax-exempt status, and to recruit volunteers for the 2008-09 school year.
After returning to the United States in 2008, Rob was invited to join the Board and accepted without hesitation. Since that time he has served in several positions with the Board. Over the last 8 years, OAF added a 4th school, has become more financially stable, and enrollment has grown from 400 students to more than 700 students.
Rob considers his experience with Olancho Aid a life changing one, resulting in an ongoing commitment to the people of Honduras. Rob is also a member of the Knights of Columbus, Holy Spirit Parish Evangelization Committee, and leader of Alpha Evangelization Program.
Michael is a Manager of the Pharmacy Sourcing Team at HealthTrust Group Purchasing Organization.
Michael’s first experience with Olancho Aid was with a mission team from Holy Family Catholic Church in the summer of 2010. He met his now wife, Carina, during one of his visits with the team. In 2012, Michael moved to Juticalpa and volunteered full time with OAF for 2 years as Director of Development. During his time in Juticalpa, Michael founded the Santa Clara Summer Camp, enhanced the scholarship program, and worked to enhance donor relationships and communications. Carina and Michael now live in Nashville, TN and continue to support the organization in many ways. They return annually as mission team members with Holy Family Catholic Church.
Michael volunteers with Big Brothers Big Sisters Middle TN and is a member of the Pharmacy Advisory Board at HealthTrust.
Jackie is the owner and director of Casa de Amigos Bilingual Preschool. She is a graduate of Louisiana State University and has a Master’s degree in Elementary Education (K-8 & Spanish). She has been an educator in the Ascension Public School System since 1998. In 2007, she and her husband built the first bilingual preschool (Casa de Amigos Preschool) in Ascension Parish. Their 3 year old son, Matthew was one of the first students enrolled. She firmly believes education is the key to transformation.
At the age of 3, Jackie and her parents left their home in Havana, Cuba in the pursuit of religious and political freedom. They left their home with only the clothes on their backs and the love of Christ in their hearts. Her parent’s hardships and sacrifices have always served as her driving force to support those in need. Because of the similarities between Cuba and Honduras, Olancho holds a very special place in her heart. She first visited Honduras in 2008 and Olancho specifically in 2012 as a member of the St. John Mission Team. She has been an active member of the Olancho Aid Board since 2014. Jackie and her husband of 25 years, Jan, live in Prairieville, Louisiana with their son, Matthew. Their daughter Marissa served OAF as a Summer Immersion Counselor in 2014 and Summer Immersion Camp Coordinator in 2015 & 2016.
Being a member of Alpha Delta Kappa-Beta Eta Chapter Sorority, has given her the opportunity to facilitate the partnering in education between ADK-Beta Eta, St. John’s mission team, special needs professionals, and Olancho Aid’s Escuelita Nazareth. Jackie is a member of St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Prairieville, LA, and a committee member for their mission team.
Lisa is a retired Network Administrator from Rubicon LLC in Geismar, LA. As a lifetime parishioner of St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Prairieville, LA, Lisa with her husband, Willie, and two sons traveled to Honduras for the first time with mission team in 2005 and was deeply transformed by the missionary experience and the people of Honduras. She has returned with teams every summer and has coordinated mission trips in partnership with OAF since 2011. Four generations of her family and many volunteers from ages 10 to 86 have participated in mission trips and as short-term volunteers.
Lisa joined the Olancho Aid Foundation’s board of directors in 2014. She provides IT support including an annual review of IT processes and support strategies. Lisa coordinates annual mission trips and fundraising activities sponsored by St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Prairieville, LA.
She has volunteered for many charitable and civic organizations through her employer, church parish and local schools. Lisa is active in prison ministry at the Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women and other church social responsibility ministries.
Kerry Lindstrom is a 5th grade English Language Arts and Social Studies teacher at Fairview Elementary in Dayton, OH. For the past four years, she has taught Kindergarten and English Language Learners K-4th grades at Warner Arts Magnet School in Nashville, TN. At Warner, she led the school leadership team for two years, organized school-wide events and projects, and served as the Title I grant coordinator during the 2018-2019 school year. She attended the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, graduating with a degree in Early Childhood Education. Additionally she received her master’s in Reading Specialty & Administration from Lipscomb University.
Kerry’s first experience with Olancho Aid was with a mission team from Holy Family Catholic Church of Brentwood, Tennessee, in the summer of 2012. She has returned on several trips with the team. In 2014, she moved to Juticalpa, Honduras, to work for the Olancho Aid Foundation, volunteering as a 4th-6th grade teacher.
Kerry joined the Olancho Aid Foundation board of directors in 2019.
Meagan Tenety is a Senior Analyst on the Strategic Capital Intelligence team at Nasdaq. She graduated in 2018 with her MBA from the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business. Prior to her MBA studies she worked for three years at Fair Trade USA (FTUSA), a human and labor rights certification NGO, as a Development Manager. At FTUSA Meagan helped launch and manage a $25MM capital campaign. Before her tenure at Fair Trade USA she worked as a fundraising consultant for Lynch Development Associates along the eastern seaboard including Canada.
Meagan graduated from Lehigh University with a degree in Finance and International Relations in 2009 and moved to Olancho, Honduras to work for the Olancho Aid Foundation as a 6th grade teacher and administrator until 2011. Meagan is currently a board member at the Olancho Aid Foundation and the President of the Net Impact club at Notre Dame.
Ex Officio Members
Bishop Joseph Bonello, O.F.M. & Father Celio Mencías
Our Board members are based all over the US and bring varying perspectives to the table as decisions are made regarding policy and planning for Olancho Aid. They know it is essential to seek counsel from leaders in the Church who are based in Olancho. In 2014, Olancho Aid invited Bishop Bonello & Father Celio as advisory members of the Board. Padre Celio also leads faith development for the Foundation and gives mass weekly at each school for our students and teachers.
Members of the Olancho Aid Advisory Board
Richard Mancini, Don Dufault, Jay Wasack, Jim Walker, and Mark Wessel
In order to access expertise to direct strategic decision making, the Board of Directors has invited these individuals to evaluate specific projects related to their specialties and to advise the board and executive staff.
Olancho Aid Team
Carlos Najera, Executive Director
Carlos has devoted his life to the Olancho Aid Foundation for over 16 years. Early on Carlos managed everything from volunteers and mission teams to fundraising and strategy development. He worked closely with founder Father Donahue to implement his vision and manage operations as the organization grew at a somewhat overwhelming rate. Today, Carlos oversees 100+ employees as well as operations. He works directly with the Board to shape the future for Olancho Aid students, employees, and volunteers. Carlos and his wife Reina live just outside of Juticalpa with their 4 children.
Francisco Barahona, Controller
Francisco started his career with Olancho Aid in 2005 as a bookkeeper at Cardenal. Since then he has held several positions in the organization including Director of Human Resources and General Administrator. In 2016, Francisco took on the role of Controller and will oversee financial accounting and record keeping for all operations.
Tayler Hughes graduated from the University of Houston-Downtown, Houston, TX, in 2019. Tayler brings experience as a recreational and competitive gymnastics coach and director, a mentor to young children ages 5-12, and organizing and fundraising for community events. She is excited to begin her term as the new Volunteer Coordinator and looks forward to supporting volunteers on the ground, recruiting new volunteers, learning, and building relationships at her new home in Juticalpa.
Oscar Fuentes, Mission Team & IT Coordinator
Oscar began working for Olancho Aid in 2010 as an IT manager. Soon he took over coordinating mission teams. Oscar strives to customize the mission experience to accommodate the strengths and goals of each individual and team. Oscar has led the mission team program to sustainability by ensuring the operation does not run on a deficit. He has implemented strategies to improve quality while cutting cost in the areas of security, menu planning, event/job planning, and improved staffing procedures. Oscar also develops, maintains, and troubleshoots IT systems throughout the foundation.
Dámalis was hired in 2016 to oversee human resource functions for the Foundation. Trained as an architect, she brings a diverse educational and professional background with experience in training, billing, and working with adolescents. She was an instant fit with our office team and works closely with them and our principals to further establish the community between employees within the workplace while ensuring compliance with Honduran employment law.
Jessica Santavy, Director of U.S. Operations
Jessica, a graduate of Gannon University, was hired in the spring of 2016 to develop fundraising efforts, donor communication, volunteer recruitment, and alumni relations. She served as a volunteer teacher with Olancho Aid during the 2007-2008 school year. Jessica helped transition to the new Olancho Aid website in 2016. She is based in the United States and collaborates with the team in Honduras in order to better connect our networks between countries. She seeks to improve Olancho Aid donation and communication processes while ensuring best practices in fundraising.
Pablo Sarmiento, Water Purification Coordinator
Pablo, who studied civil engineering, was hired in 2014 to develop Olancho Aid’s Water Purification project. He traveled to Tennessee to receive training from Living Waters for the World, Olancho Aid’s partner in bringing clean water to Hondurans in rural villages. Pablo has overseen the process of system implementation in more than 16 villages thus far. He continues to seek out new communities in need of a clean water source while maintaining relationships and educational initiatives with those utilizing a system already.
Wendy Varela, Scholarship Coordinator
Wendy began working with the Olancho Aid Foundation as a teacher in 2005. In 2010, she was asked to take charge of developing the scholarship program. The program has grown to include more than 135 sponsors and over 145 recipients. In addition to home visits and monitoring academic progress, Wendy works to enhance the relationship between student and sponsor through consistent communications.