For over a decade, Jeremy has served families who’ve been terrorized by war in Iraq and Syria. Jeremy and his wife Jessica founded Preemptive Love after moving to Iraq in the middle of the war. A sought-after speaker, Jeremy has appeared on CNN, BBC, NBC, and other news outlets. He’s the author of the books Preemptive Love and Love Anyway. Jeremy lives in Iraq with his wife Jessica and their two children.
Jessica founded Preemptive Love with her husband Jeremy in 2007. As Chief Program Officer, Jessica oversees Preemptive Love’s work to end war around the world. She has helped thousands of families rebuild their lives after war. Jessica lives in Iraq with Jeremy and their two children.
JR serves as Preemptive Love’s Chief Growth Officer, providing operational leadership and strategic plan implementation for the organization. JR comes to Preemptive Love following an 11 year tenure with AT&T in sales and sales leadership for retail and small business channels. JR has been a part of Preemptive Love from the beginning—embarking with Jeremy on the very first trip into Iraq which forever changed the trajectory of his life. He served on the Board of Directors from 2011 until leaving the board to join the team full time in 2015. When JR is not waging peace around the world with Preemptive Love, he can be found spending time with his wife and three kids, making/recording/mixing music, and occasionally playing a round of golf.
Yemisi has over 25 years in Finance and Accounting, with experience overseeing Human Resources. She earned her Bachelor’s in Accounting from the University of Houston and her MBA from Pepperdine University. Yemisi has spent her life volunteering on numerous mission trips, mentoring at-risk kids, and looking out for the underdog. Her desire to align herself with an organization whose purpose mirrored her heart is what led her to Preemptive Love. In her spare time, Yemisi loves to rollerblade, try new recipes or create her own, and she’s been known to compete in Spartan obstacle course races a few times.
Amanda brings over 20 years of marketing experience to Preemptive Love, having spent her career-to-date at companies including Deutsch, Huffington Post, Nissan North America, and Eventbrite. She is thrilled to apply her marketing expertise from the private sector to drive awareness and deliver impact for Preemptive Love’s extraordinary mission. A native Southerner, Amanda grew up in Atlanta and now lives in the Nashville area with her husband and their two daughters. When she isn’t momming or marketing, you can usually find Amanda listening to podcasts or reading a good book on her back patio.
Jorge was born in Mexico City and lived there for 30 years before moving to the United States. His career has included logistics management, sales, and global executive HR experience in more than 25 countries at some of the world’s biggest companies, including Walmart, Pepsi, AeroMexico, ProMujer, and SeaWorld. Jorge is very passionate about helping others and his creative ideas lead him to implement unique initiatives with the goal of creating a better world in which to work and live. He’s very enthusiastic about cooking and spends his free time pursuing it. Jorge and his wife, Karla, have two sons, both college soccer players.
Ben has spent his entire career telling stories that move us. He brought that expertise to Preemptive Love on a short-term assignment and he became so invaluable, we put him in charge of our communications and public relations team. He has created a voice for Preemptive Love that he hopes relentlessly humanizes and celebrates those we serve. In addition to changing the way we tell stories and celebrate the lives of the most vulnerable, he is a dad, an occasional children’s book author, a runner, an amateur brewer, and the best home cook we know.
Fred spent many of his early years in the Middle East, including Syria, and has incredible memories of his time. Fred and his wife, Angie, first joined Preemptive Love as donors. Having lived in eight countries and growing up a citizen of the world, he has spent the majority of his life living abroad or working in an international field. Fred loves to help bridge cultures and see people from diverse backgrounds discover what they have in common. Prior to joining Preemptive Love, Fred led the international development efforts for Indiana University and helped develop and manage international capacity building projects in the Middle East, West Africa, South East Asia, Europe, the Caribbean, and Latin America. He believes strongly in the power of collective philanthropy and the opportunity we all have to make the beautiful world we all know is possible through sharing our time, talents and our treasure for the love of humanity and one another. In his free time, you can find Fred spending time with his wife and two teenage kids or working to reverse the effects of aging by training for his next triathlon.
Toni is a Texas native (she pretty much always mentions Texas first in her introductions), but resides in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband Sam and daughter Dylan. With a degree in business logistics and entrepreneurship, she has used her talents to help ministries, leaders, and non-profits in the areas of student ministry, creative marketing, leadership, innovation, strategic planning, and diversity and inclusion. She’s a host and communicator and has had the opportunity to proudly stand on stages like North Point Community Church, Chick-Fil-A, Orange Conference, and MomCon. With a background in helping to build bridges across racial and gender divides and a heart for a radical wave of peace and love to overcome our world, Toni jumped and took a deep dive into the opportunity to be a part of Preemptive Love and the Gathering communities movement.
Jen has significant years of experience in the humanitarian sector serving in the Middle East, Asia, and Central America. She is passionate about coordination, women’s health, and combatting issues of gender-based violence. Intrigued by the posture Preemptive Love takes toward humanitarian action, she is excited at the endless opportunities to make a more beautiful world. When Jen is not fighting injustice, you can find her in a local coffee shop, at a sporting event or enjoying the outdoors.
Living through four wars and surviving the last war alone as her family fled Iraq to find safe heaven created the pacifist that Sarah is today. She spent the past 17 years of her life on the peacemaking path trying to provide for, protect, and help the persecuted minorities in the Middle East, while trying to build bridges between all the different religious groups and communities. Sarah has focused all her efforts in the past few years on youth and educational development and women empowerment through reaching out and looking for talented young people and push to create a chance for them, providing lecturing and workshop to those who have no access, and creating jobs and business ideas to change the economical and employment scene in Iraq. Sarah tries to lead by example to change the cultural religious perception of women, youth, and general ethics.
She was awarded in 2016 the Peace and Reconciliation Prize at the House of Lords in London and in 2017 the Tanenbaum Peace in Action Prize (the first Iraqi to ever have the price and the youngest to have ever gotten it).
Anna was born in Wroclaw, Poland. She first heard about Preemptive Love when she was working in Cambodia for a small bicycle social enterprise called Soksabike. Anna loves social entrepreneurship, anthropology, and printing business cards. She hopes to one day start up her own crazy venture.
Nisha Singh is a San Francisco based marketing professional and performing artist. The intersection of her experiences in marketing, storytelling, and performance squares deeply in the “why.” Nisha is motivated by social spheres of influence that move from ideas to movements to strategies that center diverse narratives and support peaceful, inclusive environments. Nisha lives in the Bay Area with her husband Joe and their West African leopard tortoise, Earnie Girl.
Erin first came to Iraq in 2011, to work with children who found themselves on the edges of their communities—such as orphans, boys who sold bags in the bazaar, AND amazing young men who received little encouragement. She used photography as a tool for their personal development, and as a tangible way to reflect back to them their creativity and skills. Since 2013, Erin has made her home in Iraq, documenting the work of Preemptive Love, and today coordinates work across Iraq, Syria, and Mexico. She is a perpetual student of life. A vegetarian, feminist, podcast host, and peacemaker.
With 33 years of experience being a nerd and 15 years of experience working with the internet, Taylor uses both art and computer science to spin a web of interfaces and experiences to surprise, delight, and convert. Questioning everything and constantly learning, he strives to help technology become invisible so the stories of Preemptive Love shine strongest and change hearts. If he’s not working, you can find him barefoot in his garden or with friends at a Nashville brewery.
Brooklyn studied International Relations at college and interned at an immigrant rights advocacy organization assisting citizenship and DACA applicants in Nashville. She also fundraised and ran communications for a refugee resettlement agency in her home of Indianapolis. With a passion for igniting activism in people for real change, she loves speaking with donors who believe in Preemptive Love’s work of bringing hope to difficult situations. Her favorite part about Preemptive Love’s mission is its desire to return power that was stripped from displaced peoples due to war and conflict. Brooklyn loves to talk about everything that’s happening in this crazy, beautiful world. On a normal day, you can find her jamming to R&B music or at a concert with friends in Nashville.
Chelsea came to Preemptive Love after several years spent working with refugees and in global humanitarian support. She earned her Bachelor’s in Anthropology from the University of Kansas and, after winning a Fulbright to Indonesia with the U.S. State Department, she completed her Master’s in International Migration and Public Policy at the London School of Economics and Political Science. After seeing firsthand the gaps that large-scale humanitarian aid and development can often leave, she is thrilled to help Preemptive Love try to challenge the way that aid is traditionally done by listening carefully and zeroing- n on the needs of overlooked communities. When she’s not waging peace, Chelsea can often be found playing tennis, learning new languages, experimenting in the kitchen, and shamelessly reading political graphic novels.
Lindsay comes to Preemptive Love from a medical practice where she worked to provide the best daily experiences for both doctors and patients. She loves her work at Preemptive Love because she gets to share with customers how their purchases are helping change the lives of those who need it the most. She also enjoys seeing the beautiful items the women in Iraq and Syria consistently produce for the store; they are incredibly talented! When she is not working she prefers to be outdoors playing with her family, which she can do year-round in the sunny state of Florida.
Nathan comes to Preemptive Love after almost four years at Chip and Joanna Gaines’s company, Magnolia, where he worked in the warehouse, customer service, and ecommerce. After following Preemptive Love’s work for years on social media, he found a place where his passions for people and product could merge as the Shop’s Ecommerce Merchandise Coordinator. His favorite items in our store are the Kinsman Lemongrass and Sisterhood Fig & Date Soaps. Outside of work, Nathan loves cooking new recipes, reading a good book, pop culture, and all things Star Wars.
As an Iraqi boy growing up under Saddam’s regime, Ihsan only had access to a couple of TV channels, most of which just aired regime propaganda. But some evenings, one channel aired movies like Star Wars and Star Trek—little Ihsan was transfixed. Being moved by some of these movies, he knew what he wanted to do with his life. After the regime fell, Ihsan immediately bought a computer and began learning anything he could about multimedia. Today, Ihsan works as our Program Documentarian, working in the field with our program team to document our programs through interviews, photographs, video and anything that will help communicate the stories of the people we serve and the work we’re accomplishing. He also enjoys spending time with his wife and daughter, playing video games, watching movies, and and he’s pretty sure he’d survive the zombie apocalypse longer than you.
Wendy joined Preemptive Love with 17 years of experience in housing and community development. With her passion for storytelling, she enjoys writing about the lives of people in the conflict zones we serve, and helping the rest of the world see not only their urgent needs, but also their amazing beauty and significance to our global family.
After following Preemptive Love from the beginning, Jon’s heart grew to love the mission to the point that he wanted to do more to help. Prior to Preemptive Love, Jon worked at Evernote as Sales and Support Analyst, providing insight into customer interactions, as well as being a Zendesk administrator. When not working, he loves spending time with his wife, daughter, and son playing in their yard. He loves technology and using it to help improve the world around him.
Inas spent years serving her community as a volunteer before coming to work for Preemptive Love. In her hometown of Baghdad she helped women impacted by violence, and later helped families displaced by the war with ISIS. Along the way, she earned a degree in IT and Business Administration. As part of our Programs team, Inas brings the heart to care about people first and foremost, the brains to make programs function like clockwork, and the life experience–growing up amidst the bombs of Baghdad–to understand what the people we serve are experiencing. When she isn’t coaching new business owners, finagling access permissions, or translating the heart-rending stories of those we serve, you might find Inas dancing in her living room with her mother and niece.
Michel Tannous had a nice job. He wore a tie and made good money. But a few years ago, Michel just had enough. He put on his tie, inched through traffic, arrived at the bank, and he quit. He got out of the rat race and retreated to his ranch for a little peace. This is when we met him. Today, Michel is our Syria Country Representative, traveling and working throughout Syria to make sure families get what they need to hold on and hold out, surviving and thriving against all odds. When he isn’t overseeing your lifesaving impact across Syria and Lebanon, Michel enjoys his new baby, hiking, gardening, skiing, and taking care of his animals.
Leigh has been with Preemptive Love from its earliest days, first as a volunteer, and later on staff with our finance team. When she started, Preemptive Love was a small group who loved well, and invested all of themselves to make sure that Iraqi children born with heart defects–much like her own son–got lifesaving surgeries. Leigh was part of the pivot to respond to the wave of violence unleashed by ISIS in Iraq and Syria, and has continued on through our work responding to the effects of violence throughout Latin America. Her compassion, consistency, and attention to detail makes the whole organization better.
A native of Sulaimaniya, Iraq, Rawand and his family became refugees in 1990, after Saddam’s attacks on Kuwait and Kurdistan. Rawand’s family benefited greatly from the NGOs that began to provide food and rebuild schools and hospitals. These NGOs inspired Rawand and instilled in him a desire to help others in similar situations. Rawand graduated with a degree in Civil Engineering. After ISIS came in 2014, Rawand saw an influx of refugees and internally displaced people arrive in his city and immediately desired to serve them. He spent 2 years working inside refugee camps, providing water and promoting hygiene. Rawand came to Preemptive Love in 2017 to help with finance and managing projects. He was drawn to Preemptive Love’s work on the frontlines and loved how they empowered people to become owners of their own businesses. In his free time, Rawand also enjoys watching football, documentary films, and, most importantly, spending time with family.
Abigail was initially drawn to Preemptive Love because of their commitment to peacemaking as a central tenant of relief work. She has always desired to work alongside marginalized and overlooked people groups and developed a passion for the refugee community while pursuing her undergraduate degree in human rights. Abigail loves utilizing her experience in marketing and communications to connect with Preemptive Love’s compassionate and inspiring donors on a daily basis. Abigail lives in Nashville. You can find her most often at the cinema or deeply invested in a podcast.
Kim brought her years of copyediting expertise to our team to ensure our stories are told in the most honoring and grammatically correct way, and to help organize years’ worth of photos and videos from our work in areas most impacted by violence. Now she helps organize and edit across all of Preemptive Love. She is a mother of three active kids, an avid runner and reader, and has never met a snack she doesn’t like. She loves to take roadtrips around the Midwest to visit family and friends and enjoys a nighttime bonfire with those she loves.
After graduating as an Environmental Engineer, Saadia worked for the government to ensure compliance of landfills and power generation facilities. She took a pause to raise her family and volunteer for several non-profits, ultimately discovering herself by being an active, responsible citizen in her hometown of Oviedo, Florida. Saadia believes meaningful friendships can be found in unexpected places. Her work to show neighbors how similar we are regardless of ethnic or religious differences led her to Preemptive Love. As a Gathering Coordinator, Saadia hopes to spread this message to communities nationwide. If she’s not participating at an event around town, you may find Saadia picking up after her two girls, reminding her husband where he left his wallet, or saving the last three bananas for her famous banana bread.
Rachel came to Preemptive Love after 6+ years working in various administrative positions in the non-profit sector. She enjoys the tasks that others find tedious and finds great satisfaction in helping Jeremy and the Preemptive Love executive team function as efficiently as possible. In her free time, she can be found running, swimming, mowing her lawn, and shamelessly treating her dog and cat like they are her children.
Fighting against injustice, standing up for the overlooked and marginalized, and daring to go where others will not makes Alissa’s heart beat faster. From the moment she first heard Jeremy Courtney tell the story of Preemptive Love, she knew she had to be involved with their mission. A year later, Alissa found herself living in Iraq, having joined the team in making the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible. When she isn’t loving people, you can probably find Alissa climbing a mountain, writing honestly about life, wishing she had an oat milk latte, or pretending she can dance.
Charlene believes in the power of images to change lives. An observer by nature, she’s been wandering slowly around the world with a camera by her side for numerous years, observing the many ways in which we are all connected. Photography has played an enormous role in the transformation of her own life, including leading her to Preemptive Love, where she hopes her images will make a difference to those she serves.
Lana saw Preemptive Love’s work first-hand when she, along with her family members, volunteered to bring food to children that Preemptive Love was providing heart surgeries for in Iraqi Kurdistan. She has volunteered with various NGOs since middle school, developing a passion to serve others in need of help no matter where they are. Right after graduating from Lipscomb University in Nashville, she immediately began working alongside Preemptive Love to connect with our kind-hearted and inspirational donors. Lana loves to utilize her international business skills to also help our volunteers get creative with their fundraisers and become leaders in their community. Because of her love for people and culture, Lana’s always trying to learn a new language that will help her connect with people from across the globe, and she absolutely loves to listen to music in different languages (especially Korean-pop).
Ashley knew she would say yes when Jeremy and Jess unexpectedly asked if she’d be willing to move to Iraq. She left her graduate program in London and stepped into the unknown. As a WorkWell Tech Hub Manager, Ashley recruited and led a great team that became her second family. A year and a half later she is still in Iraq, now reporting on the impact of small business grants for our refugee friends and working on her Masters in Sustainable Development on the side. When Ashley is unable to travel home to Texas to spend time with her family, she is likely to be found in one of her favorite coffee shops in London.
Joe grew up in South Texas by the border. He’s always been fascinated by making things with tech, especially with photography and code. Joe was drawn to Preemptive Love’s openness to all people and their mission to build a global community that honors people more than positions. In his free time, he enjoys playing video games and continuously growing in his skills as a maker.
Tammy has been a fan and supporter of Preemptive Love since meeting the Courtneys in 2014. She felt an immediate affinity with the organization’s commitment to engage in relief, job creation, and peacemaking from a place of local partnership. Having previously worked in a similar role supporting global advocacy in the Middle East, Tammy is thrilled to be a part of the Preemptive Love team. She lives in the Chicago area with her husband and two sons. She loves to cheer on her sports-loving boys, and believes life is best lived with strong coffee, good books, and in the company of close friends.
Sabah is from Iraq and studied Psychology at Baghdad University. Sabah and her husband have three kids and one adorable grandson. Six years ago, Sabah and her family came to the US from Iraq as refugees and settled in Clarkston.
Hataw is from Kurdistan and loves to cook. One day she hopes to open her own Kurdish restaurant, but for now she loves to bring in feasts for her coworkers! Hataw and her family came to the US seven years ago. She and her husband have three kids.
Hawar was born in Kurdistan, Iraq. He fled with his family to Iran when he was 4 years old. From a young age, Hawar wanted to do humanitarian work. After graduating university, Hawar began working with internally displaced people in Kurdistan. He organized the distribution of resources, food, and cash, as well as registration of all refugees and displaced people, including Kurds, Christians, Shabak, and Yazidis. Over the years, Hawar has been recognized by various organizations for his humanitarian work. Hawar joined the Preemptive Love family in 2018 and continues to use his passion for humanitarian services to bring hope and help to all he meets.
Zachariah grew up in Kansas, eventually completing both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Theology. Having seen poverty, oppression, and injustice in places like the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, and his own backyard, he was overwhelmed by the global need. His first encounter of Syrian culture was in Athens, Greece in 2018, where he worked and lived in a refugee community. Presently his role takes him across Syria. This is what he loves most: to go where few will, to love those either long ago forgotten or long ago consigned to the fate they’ve made for themselves, and to do it all in the unwavering belief that all things can, and will, indeed be redeemed.
Chad came to Preemptive Love while he was working on the Love Anyway film. He has spent 14+ years making moving pictures for NGOs and will try anything new when it comes to visual media. Chad works to tell the stories that Preemptive Love comes across daily. When he isn’t in the office you can find him snowboarding on the slopes of Colorado or rock climbing anything that looks like a good time 500 feet of the ground.
You always find Rafael at the heart of a story unfolding. It might be deep in conversation with an Ecuadorian migrant in Mexico, listening to what brought them to the US border. It might be navigating the borderlands between Colombia and Venezuela. Or it might be documenting stories with his camera. Rafael has navigated life across borders himself, having lived in both the US and Mexico. His love of people shines through when he spends time at church and with his family, who often find themselves the subjects of his photos.
Chase is a graphic designer and photographer who is passionate about using his creative eye to tell stories that matter. His design career began in his days as a touring musician creating art for friends and it has grown into much more. He currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia with his wife, Gracie. You can find him most Saturdays cheering for West Ham United or trying to book his next trip to document more of the beauty this world has to offer.
After following Preemptive Love’s work for years on social media, Michelle jumped at the opportunity to join the team as the Senior Accountant and combine her heart for people with her love of numbers. She has a Bachelor’s in Psychology and a Master’s in Accounting from Indiana University. Outside of work, you can find Michelle spending time with her family and friends, reading a book, or planning her next trip to see more of this complex and beautiful world.
Katelynn first met Preemptive Love when she stepped into the frontlines of Houston after Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Watching hope and love transform hearts around her, she knew this was where she needed to be. She continued dedicating herself to completing her bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Communication and pursuing the refugee community in Fayetteville, Arkansas. After her internship with Preemptive Love in 2019, her heart began to deliberately pursue the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible, eventually working alongside fellow college-age peacemakers to pursue change and transformation in our communities.
Graduating first in her class, Duaa never took no for an answer and always worked hard to succeed. Her multi-cultural background as an Iraqi-Syrian positioned her perfectly to deal with refugees and displaced communities in Iraq. And her interior design background always put her first when it came to beauty and creating it. As the Sisterhood Artisan MakerSpace Location Manager, Duaa empowers makers to create top-notch art and products.
Kalindi studied Journalism with a focus in Advertising & Public Relations at the University of Arkansas. She has a passion for fighting against social injustices in the world and has worked alongside some of the most vulnerable and marginalized populations. She devoted her years in college to raising funds for non-profits, and strengthening her leadership skills and passion for helping people. Kalindi first learned about Preemptive Love after hearing Jeremy Courtney speak at a conference to fight against human trafficking. She immediately resonated with the messages of pressing into pain and loving anyway. Kalindi lives in Dallas with her two dogs. You can find Kalindi on her mountain bike, reading, writing poetry, chugging insane amounts of coffee, watching telenovelas, and serving as an encouraging friend to all.
With more than a decade of experience in advancing the mission, vision, and goals of non-profit and socially responsible for-profit companies, Sarah Beth has helped to lead the financial growth and expansion of a wide range of successful organizations including The Jane Goodall Institute, United Nations Women’s Humanitarian Action Program, African Leadership Academy, and the Mandela Scholars Program. Closer to home, Sarah Beth has worked with Pride at Work, City University of New York, and many others. Her articles on impact investing and trends in global philanthropy have been published by The DO School, ZEIT Stiftung Ebelin und Gerd Bucerius, and others. She is a Mentor with MIT’s LaunchX program and routinely consults with social entrepreneurs and those seeking to support innovative projects in civil society.
Maritza has spent the last twenty years working with non-profit causes that align with her vision of a world that honors and supports every member of our human family and our natural environment. She has dedicated her career and board service to immigrant rights and advocacy, social justice, global poverty, reproductive rights, youth mobilization and leadership development, and international peacemaking work. She is currently based out of Houston, Texas but spends a considerable amount of her time traveling this big, beautiful world. Outside of work, you can find her practicing Baptiste Yoga, exploring hidden culinary gems, and leading social justice and antiracism workshops.
Drew joined the Preemptive Love team in 2019 as an intern. He is now a full-time Donor Care Coordinator, engaging with our generous community of supporters through our website chat, emails, social media, phone calls, and more! Drew’s eyes were opened to the global refugee crisis early in his college experience, and he’s had a heart for walking alongside refugees ever since. He is passionate about bringing health, hope, and healing to displaced and marginalized communities around the world. Drew recently earned a Master’s in Exercise and Nutrition Science at Lipscomb University. When not working, Drew can be found exercising, reading, exploring, gardening, serving with church friends, celebrating holidays, or geeking out over the enneagram or Marvel movies.
Afnan was born in Saudi Arabia after her parents fled the civil war in Somalia. When she was 7, they moved to Syria and spent an incredible decade in Damascus. In 2008, Afnan and her family relocated to Indianapolis, Indiana as refugees. She has always been passionate about working for and with refugees and displaced people and volunteered with the same organization that took care of her family. Afnan attended Indiana University and received her bachelor’s in International Studies with a concentration in Human Rights and International Law. In the summer of 2019, Afnan interned with Preemptive Love as an English instructor. While at Indiana University, Afnan taught Arabic for three years and served as co-host for IU’s Preemptive Love chapter. Afnan wants to help change the ideas that lead to war globally.
Gida studied Pure and Applied Mathematics and worked in web development before joining the Preemptive Love team. She enjoys using different skillsets in her work and appreciates making connections. Gida has lived in different cities around the globe. She loves to travel, speaks several languages, and is a certified yoga instructor.
Raised in the US, but born and currently living in Mexico, Haniel brings years of personal experience to Preemptive Love’s work with migrant and refugee populations. While working as a professor in several universities in Ciudad Juarez, he also frequently volunteered with migrants in the various shelters in the city, bringing them English classes and connecting them with other local resources. In early 2020, Haniel found a home in Preemptive Love, and he now puts to use his passion for helping refugees as a Program Officer on the US-Mexico border. Outside of work, he enjoys couch-surfing while traveling the country, playing guitar and singing in his church’s worship band, and attempting to keep his fishing hobby alive while living in the desert.
Ronal isn’t afraid of the hard stories he hears while working with Venezuelans devastated by the country’s economic collapse. He is a journalist by trade, and covered hard news stories for seventeen years, through audiovisual media, print and digital newspapers. Now with our Preemptive Love team, he leverages his experience to facilitate programming with deep understanding of underlying issues behind poverty, and documents the stories of those we serve with a strong mix of experience and compassion. For Ronal, faith and family are cornerstones of his life. He’s a teacher and drummer in his local church. He also loves to enjoy a sunrise on the beach with his wife.
Karina has developed social media tactics for nonprofits for over 10 years, leveraging their online presence to elevate their mission, impact, and programming. She has lived in various parts of the US and aspires to move to Portugal one day. Karina likes to pretend that she knows how to read palms and can do so in English, Portuguese, and Spanish. She is passionate about justice, art, and cats.
Born in Haiti, Déborah has over 18 years’ experience in international development and nonprofits in the US, Latin America, and the Caribbean. She is fluent in English, French, Spanish and Haitian Creole, and conversational learning Italian. Déborah has learned that the best way to help people and communities is to first understand their hopes and dreams; hence intercultural communications are her most developed skillset. Recently, she launched a podcast to share her experiences expatriating at different times throughout her life. Currently, Déborah lives in Quito, Ecuador with her family, where the proximity to the equator keeps them all balanced.
Cayce Pack joined Preemptive Love after a decade of development work in the humanitarian space, with a focus on displaced and disaster-affected communities. Originally from Tennessee, Cayce’s family was very active in refugee resettlement, which influenced her passion for undoing violence and remaking home. Prior to joining Preemptive Love, Cayce held roles across both the non-profit and private sector, including managing disaster response impact programs at Amazon Web Services, building the Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility, and leading corporate emergency partnerships for UNICEF USA. She has lived and worked across Egypt, Palestine, Jordan, and Lebanon. In her free time, she enjoys trying to find the best falafel in New York and practicing Arabic.
Joyce has been a technical guru for over 20 years, and loves the challenge of tech. She originally hails from Chicago, Illinois, and currently makes her home in Kalamazoo, Michigan (yes, there really is a Kalamazoo!). Since 2016, she’s been a certified Salesforce Administrator. Recently, she worked as a Consultant for the past 8 years, and previously was an IT Manager at Planned Parenthood of South Central Michigan. Joyce is a warrior for social justice and anti-racism.
Nigel is a West Virginian native, who picked up and moved to Atlanta, GA almost 4 years ago. He studied Business Management & Marketing at Marshall University, as well as Public Administration. Nigel is an artist and educator by trade, who uses the avenues of creativity and communication to bridge gaps between people groups and help grow an overall understanding of our individual experiences. If there’s food to be eaten or coffee available for consumption, he will be first in line. International travel, insightful cultural experiences, and challenging conversations are atop the list of ways Nigel likes to spend his free time.
This native of Orange City, Florida has brought his heart, story, and studies to our Love Anyway team. Driven by the deep desire to heal all that is tearing us apart, Nick considers this passion to be the leading force behind his adventures. Armed with a heart to serve others and a desire to be a lifelong learner, Nick earned a degree in English Education from Bethune-Cookman University, taught high school English, and now holds a master’s degree in Conflict Analysis & Dispute Resolution with a focus in restorative justice from Salisbury University. Nick’s most cherished parts of his journey are the relationships he’s formed along the way. He allows his love for things like music, coffee, basketball, nature, food, movies, reading, and writing to connect him with a wide variety of stories, experiences, and relationships.
Kristina has more than six years of experience in program development, research, and advocacy focused on human rights, development, and humanitarian programming in the Middle East. She has spent the last three years living and working in Iraq. In addition to Iraq, her work has taken her to Greece, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates, where she worked with refugee and migrant worker communities. Her writing on human rights and humanitarian issues in the Middle East has been published in The New York TImes, Quartz, Middle East Eye, and other global media outlets. Kristina is a human rights activist deeply committed to fighting injustice and ending war. In her spare time, you can find her spoiling her Persian cat from Baghdad and perfecting her Syrian-Armenian, great-grandmother’s homemade baklava recipe.
Kayla is passionate about the intersection of nurturing the land, uniting communities, and mobilizing dreams. It is this passion that led her to Preemptive Love. The past seven years have equipped her with US based and international non-profit work in urban and rural regenerative agriculture, education, marketing, and leadership. When not on the farm, she can be found foraging in the forest, exploring the beauty of diverse cultures that fill this world, or creating new worlds with her nephews and niece.
Danelia was born and raised in Honduras and was taught at an early age the importance of helping others. She brings over 9 years of experience in a variety of HR areas. Daniela loves meeting new people and creating long-standing relationships with them. She lives in Florida with her husband and their two children. In her free time, she loves to listen to audiobooks, garden, and travel with her family.
A Georgia native and self-proclaimed foodie, Latristia has her master’s in Social Work. She has used her talents in both the non-profit and corporate world, providing a wide range of services to underserved and vulnerable populations. With her servant’s heart, Latristia is passionate about community outreach and being the light to those around her and is thrilled to be a part of the Preemptive Love team! In her free time, Latristia enjoys creating new memories with her husband, vlogging, being a foodie (of course), and spending time with friends and family.
Julia first learned about the work of Preemptive Love in 2014 as the Syrian Civil War was displacing thousands of families from their homes. Passionate about learning from the world around her, she is finishing her degree in International Affairs and continues to stay curious about why systems that work for some people, don’t benefit all people. Julia has experience working with community organizing and enjoys getting to know her neighbors better. You can find her supporting local shops wherever she travels and always on the hunt for her next read.
After almost a decade of focusing and dedicating her time on getting her masters degree and preparing for her PhD, Zheen wanted to spend her time on global peacemaking. In 2018 Zheen joined Preemptive Love as a teacher at one of our tech hubs where she coached the younger generation in the community to start their tech-related careers. Zheen loves working with a diverse team and enjoys the opportunity to get to know those who are different and learn from them. Outside of work, Zheen likes to collect coffee mugs, exercise, read novels and philosophical books, spend time in nature and mountains, and is active in protecting the environment.
Not (yet) pictured: the incredible instructors and team at our tech hubs creating jobs for those affected by violence.
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