Impact Hub DC
419 7th St NW,
Washington, DC 20004
Ben became convinced of the power of small business to transform poor communities in Mexico, where he co-founded CityGolf Puebla, a miniature golf course and family recreation center. After working as a Presidential Management Fellow at the Office of Management and Budget, he left to attend business school and launch Agora Partnerships. Since graduating in 2005, Ben has been named a Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation Entrepreneur, a BMW Foundation Young Leader, and an Ashoka Fellow. He was a Social Venture Network Innovation Award honoree in 2009 and named one of 2010’s top 40 under 40 development leaders in Washington, DC. He earned an MBA from Columbia University, where he was awarded the inaugural alumni social innovation award, and an MSFS with distinction from Georgetown University. Ben has a BA with high honors from Haverford College, where he co-founded Tres Nacos Quesadillas Delivery and the Lighted Fools improv troupe. A native of Cambridge, Mass., Ben lives in Washington, DC with his wife and three children.
Jesse is currently Director of New Initiatives at Agora Partnerships, where he leads partnership building, fundraising efforts, and is a member of the entrepreneur recruitment team. Before joining Agora, Jesse worked on a range of international development projects in East Africa, was a political reporter for a newspaper in South Carolina, and was the co-founder of a start-up focused on using social media to market emerging musicians in North Carolina. He also worked in a small-business development project called Africa B2B that distributed low-interest loans to companies in Uganda.
Anastasiya’s expertise is in providing catalytic capital and advice on financial strategy to businesses ranging from early stage start-ups to multinational corporations. Anastasiya has successfully completed the Agora Fellowship, advising 5 social enterprises in South America in business strategy and preparing for investment. Prior to joining Agora, Anastasiya managed due-diligence, underwriting and structuring of loans to social enterprises at RSF Social Finance and served as the Finance Content Adviser for the GSBI Accelerator. Anastasiya began her career in Corporate & Investment Banking with Wells Fargo. Anastasiya holds a Master’s in International Finance and Economic Development from the Barcelona Graduate School of Economics, and a B.S. in Finance from Santa Clara University. Anastasiya is originally from Ukraine, and enjoys visiting friends around the world, dancing, yoga and rock-climbing.
Originally from Ecuador, Diego has vast experience in implementing and improving business operations systems in small- to medium-sized nonprofit organizations. In roles such as Associate Director at Ana G. Mendez University Maryland campus, Operations Manager at several nonprofits, and over three years of non-profit accounting experience, Diego has a wide range of unique skills. Diego obtained his MBA from University of Maryland University College and is currently completing an MS in Management with a specialization in Project Management. He joins Agora to further strengthen its business, operational, and financial strategy. Diego enjoys mountain biking, as well as walking with his son, Lucas, and his golden retriever, Bruno.
Maria was born and raised in Nicaragua in a family of entrepreneurs where she witnessed first hand the endless potential of a well-run business. While pursuing her MBA at Hult International Business School in San Francisco she had the opportunity to work in strategic projects with high tech startups and venture capitalist partners, experiencing both the passion and pragmatism that every new business must strive to balance if it is to be successful. Prior to her MBA, she worked as a financial auditor at PwC Nicaragua and PwC Panama. She has a BS in Accounting and Marketing. In her free time she likes to dance, do yoga, learn new languages, and experience new cultures.
Brian is an engineer by training, accelerator manager by profession, and traveler by passion. He loves collaborating with entrepreneurs driven to achieve the world as it should be in areas of urban innovation, education, and agriculture. In 2016, Brian was an Agora Consultant supporting growth strategy with 4 tech startups in South America and the Caribbean. Prior to Agora he has co-created Minnesota’s first impact incubator and angel impact investing ventures (catalyzing $1 million+ in investments), managed water infrastructure projects in Kenya and Uganda, and led socio-economic research programs in rural Nepal and India. Brian is a Global Shaper with the World Economic Forum and holds degrees in civil engineering and sustainable development from the University of Minnesota and Utrecht University.
Kira has been working for several years as a Consultant designing inclusive financial products for underserved populations in Latin America. She has provided market research services for microfinance institutions in Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Dominican Republic as a Professional Service Provider certified by Microsave Africa Organization. Kira served for several years as an Executive Director for a microfinance institution in Nicaragua associated with Vision Fund International. She was also was a Manager of a loan portfolio and the risk capital operations for Agros International Organization in Central America and Chiapas-Mexico. Kira received her MBA in Business from the INCAE Business School, which Harvard Business School founded and technically supervises. She enjoys learning from entrepreneurs and dancing with her daughter.
Cecile has experience in programs supporting women-led start-ups and social businesses both in France and internationally, notably through international organizations, NGOs and a corporate philanthropy in the luxury sector. She is passionate about promoting people who are making a difference in the world. Cecile graduated with a MA in Peacebuilding from the Institute of Political Studies of Lille, France. Outside of work, Cecile enjoys exploring the world backpacking and meeting new people..
Elysa brings a wide range of experience in marketing and communications. Prior to joining Agora, Elysa worked in communications at a political and corporate consulting firm and served as media director for a fair wage start-up committed to empowering Guatemalan communities. Elysa holds a BA in International Area Studies with a focus in Sustainable Development from Washington University in St. Louis. In her free time, she enjoys travel, hiking, and painting..
Roger graduated with honors from Thomas More University in Managua, Nicaragua with a degree in Political Science and International Relations. He also holds a diploma in Youth Leadership. Roger worked at the Nicaraguan Export and Investment Center where he witnessed the importance of helping small and medium enterprises to grow. He is now happy to be working with Agora to support social entrepreneurs and accelerate positive impact in society.
Stann has over four years of experience in non-profit organization and advocacy. Originally from Jamaica, Stann joins Agora through the Atlas Corp Fellow program. Stann has worked as a research assistant for Princeton University while living in Spain, an afterschool program coordinator in France, and interned at the PeaceJam Foundation in Michigan. Stann received a Master’s Degree in Political Science Research from Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Spain and a BA in International Relations, French, and History from Kalamazoo College. He is passionate about global/public policy, international travel, diplomacy, political analysis, and law.
Laura brings 8 years of experience in business and consulting. She is an Acumen Global Fellow and prior to Agora she joined Amal Academy in Pakistan to support their scaling efforts. She also worked at Avianca, optimizing and redefining the revenue strategy for the region; as well as Planes Consultores consulting organizations and researching case-studies that lead to the publication of the first national Global-Inclusive-Markets report for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). Laura holds a Bachelor’s in Industrial Engineering from Universidad Nacional (Colombia); and a Master’s in Strategic Project Management from Heriot-Watt University, Politecnico di Milano and Umeå Universitet.
Cezarina has experience in financial services in Romania and Netherlands. Throughout her career and studies she has also lived and worked in Portugal, Spain and Brazil. Her previous role was to integrate sustainability within banking services, blending her business background with corporate social responsibility engagement. While doing an MBA at IE Business School in Madrid, she organized a social entrepreneurship boot camp and later on developed her passion for the field through her social impact consultant role in Rio de Janeiro. She likes working with people from around the world and co-creating out of the box solutions for community empowerment.
Alexandria joins Agora with extensive business development and supply chain experience working at startups, for-profits and non-profits in the US and Latin America. As Senior Manager at Fair Trade USA, she built environmentally friendly and ethical supply chains for Fortune 500 retailers that returned an additional $18 million in community development funds to farmers. She also acted as a Latin America Fixed Income Analyst at JPMorgan and Director of Strategic Partnerships at a $30 million nutrition startup in Silicon Valley. Alexandria is passionate about helping mission-driven companies grow impact and believes in the power of market-based approaches to poverty alleviation.
Ricardo is an award winning social entrepreneur with experience in key administrative positions in national and international companies. He is an economist and holds a Master’s in Business Design and Entrepreneurship from Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden. Additionally, he has participated in high-level entrepreneurship programs such as Stanford University Entrepreneurship Bootcamp, Stanford University Program for Entrepreneurship in Latin America and Dell Social Innovation Lab. He is a board member of several NGOs in Nicaragua. Ricardo has experience coaching and leading multicultural teams, developing start-ups and as teaching as a university entrepreneurship professor.
Jen brings more than ten years of experience in philanthropy, non-profits, and education. Most recently, at Carnegie Corporation of New York, she worked to increase access to personalized learning models across the United States. Previously she was a Teach for America corps member in New York City and a Fulbright fellow in Argentina. Jen holds an MA in Quantitative Methods in the Social Sciences from Columbia University, an MS in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from Fordham University, and a BA in Latin American Studies from Wesleyan University. Outside of work, she loves to cook and travel.
Mariella has worked in finance with companies such as Deloitte, Citigroup, and PwC in Washington DC, Miami and NYC for about 6 years. Prior to joining the Agora team, Mariella worked at Villgro Innovations Foundation overseeing Villgro’s replication efforts outside and inside of India. Mariella has a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Finance from the University of Maryland College Park, and she holds a certificate on Social Enterprise Management & Impact Investing from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.
Andres has a diverse background – lawyer and commercial manager with a technical background in project management, procurement, operations and infrastructure. He has more than eight years of experience working in the resources sector in Australia, where he led teams in multimillion-dollar contract negotiations. More recently, Andres has worked as a strategy consultant with the Mexican social enterprise Echale a Tu Casa and with Impact Investment Partners in London. Andres holds an MBA from Oxford University. He enjoys rock climbing, running, rock music and avocadoes.
Eric Sillman General Partner, Aperture Venture Partners
Ezra Friedman Asst. Professor, Northwestern University School of Law
Melissa Cheong Principal, Imprint Capital Advisors
Holly Huffman Executive Director, JPMorgan
Elizabeth Bibb Binder Senior Manager, The Bridgespan Group
Ricardo Terán Terán Co-Founder at Agora Partnerships
Tabitha Jordan Executive Director, Adam J Weissman Foundation
Scott Leonard Co-Founder and CEO, Indigenous Designs
Stephen Sammut Venture Partner, Burill & Company
Adriana Sanchez Guzman Founder at Sikuali Founder and Partner at PAD Asesores
Enrique Kaufmann CEO at Green Squids
Karla Garcia-Teruel Partner at Spectron and Interim CEO at Catapulta
Luz Maria De la Mora Executive Director at WEConnect International
Marcus Dantus Founder and CEO at Startup Mexico
Victor Hugo Lopez Aranda Executive Director at FONDESO
Felix Maradiaga Managing Director at Pioneer Capital Partners
Kevin Marinacci President and Managing Director at Fabretto
Frank Matus Aguirre Country Director at Habitat for Humanity Nicaragua
Ricardo Terán Founder and CEO of Inventtus International Corporation; President Grupo Roberto Terán
Ricardo Terán Terán Co-Founder at Agora Partnerships; Founder and CEO of Nuve Technologies
Impact Hub DC
419 7th St NW,
Washington, DC 20004
Residencial Altamira D'Este,
del Banpro 1 cuadra abajo, No. 82
US VoIP: 202-558-6962
Av. Insurgentes Sur 318
06700 Cd de México, CDMX