Meet the team.

SGP is led by a dedicated team of volunteers elected by members.
To learn more about each team member, click on their pictures.


Kristy Kelly Co-President
Christina Gordon Co-President
Ritu Gupta Co-President
Hayat Askar_240x240
Hayat Askar Gender Cafe Lead
Kenneth Boÿenah Dubé-Boute Nimley
Kenneth Boyenah Nimley Technology Lead
Nicole Figot Parliamentarian
Brenna Kutch Treasurer
Kelly Grace
Kelly Grace Circles Lead
Inma Macias-Alonso Secretary
Daniel Sandoval Secretariat-at-Large
Chutong Zhu Global Policy Intern
Saira Zuberi
Saira Zuberi Communications Lead

Standing Committee Chairs

Alvin Cloyd Dakis
Alvin Cloyd Dakis Solidarity Program and Partnerships
Emilia Eyo Okon
Emilia Eyo Okon Events and Professional Development
Eddah Kanini #2
Eddah Kanini Diversity and Inclusion
Zara Korutz_Co-chair of the Diversity & Inclusion Committee.
Zara Korutz Diversity and Inclusion
Christina Lacey
Christina Lacey Events and Professional Development
Elizabeth Wright Ventimillia Solidarity Program and Partnerships

Advisory Council

Karine Lepillez
Karine Lepillez
Screen Shot 2021-02-20 at 12.36.35 PM
Lina AbiRafeh
Myra Marx Ferree
Myra Marx Ferree

Kristy Kelly (She/Her)


Kristy Kelly is a sociologist specializing in gender and development, policy and politics, transnational feminisms, gender mainstreaming, and social change in Southeast Asia. She is currently assistant clinical professor of global and international education at Drexel University and Associate Research Scholar at the Weatherhead East Asian Institute at Columbia University. Dr. Kelly teaches courses on gender mainstreaming, education diplomacy, gender and development in Southeast Asia and qualitative research methods. She has published on gender and education leadership, gender mainstreaming policy, gender and corruption, and post-socialist transition in Vietnam. She also consults and advises on gender and development issues for multilateral and humanitarian aid organizations such as UNESCO, The Asia Foundation, and Transparency International in Asia and Africa. Dr. Kelly serves as an Expert Advisor on Gender Mainstreaming to the United Nations, and is a Fulbright Core Specialist on Gender Equality. She received her BA from Pennsylvania State University, and MA and PhD from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.

Christina Gordon (She/Her)


Christina Gordon is a Program Associate for the Women’s Learning Partnership, where she manages the organization’s reporting and evaluation efforts.  Christina previously worked as a Gender Equality Fellow at Save the Children US, where she supported the development and implementation of the organization’s Gender Equality Strategy. She also previously managed education abroad programs in the Middle East and North Africa, specializing in intercultural learning, cross-cultural communication, and issues of identity, diversity and harassment. She has experience researching the gendered effects of education policy in Jordan and Morocco and teaching English as a second language as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant in Amman, Jordan.  Christina holds a master’s degree in international affairs with a concentration in global gender policy from George Washington University and a bachelor’s degree in political science and modern languages from Kenyon College.


Ritu Gupta (She/Her)


Ritu is based in Kolkata, India and is currently working as a Programme Manager with Gender at Work, an international feminist knowledge network. She has researched and written extensively on gender-related issues including, gender identities, child marriage, and domestic workers’ rights, amongst others. Ritu holds a Masters in Gender and Development from IDS, Sussex. She is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and Six Sigma Green Belt (on process improvement) practitioner.

Hayat Askar (She/Her)

Gender Cafe Lead

Hayat Askar is a Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Expert with more than 12 years of experience in the fields of M&E, project management, data visualization, and gender. She has worked with various stakeholders from governments, to the private sector, and with international organizations. Hayat is a board member of the Jordan Development Evaluation Association (EvalJordan). She also previously served as the SGP Secretary.

Kenneth Boyenah Nimley (He/Him)

Technology Lead

Kenneth Nimley is a doctoral student in the College of Computing and Informatics at Drexel University, who works on increasing community collaboration around education and empowering underrepresented youth. His research focuses on promoting diversity and inclusion in education through technological innovation, combining computer science, information science, user experience design and psychology. Mr. Nimley received his BS in Computer Science from Rhode Island College and his MS in Computer Science from Boston University. He also served as a founding administrator of a K-12 charter school in Providence, RI for 15 years. His experiences on the front lines of addressing the needs of underserved youth inspired his doctoral work.

Nicole Figot (She/Her)


Nicole Figot is a gender consultant focused on financial inclusion and economic empowerment. She has worked in public policy and social development for organizations including the Global Center for Gender Equality at Stanford University, UNDP, Fundación IDEA, The Hunger Project, Dalia Empower and USAID. She has a Master’s in Public Administration from Columbia University focused on gender policy and a Bachelor’s in International Relations from Universidad Iberoamericana. Based in Mexico City, she has also  created strategies for organizations looking to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace. 


Brenna Kutch (She/They)


Brenna has spent their career in human resources, organizational equity and inclusion, and administration. This experience includes time with higher education, Mercy Corps, USAID, and volunteering for various organizations advocating for LGBTQ, Gender, and social justice. They also hold a Masters in Public Administration in HR Management from Portland State University.

Kelly Grace

Circles Lead

Kelly is a research consultant focusing on gender in comparative and international education (CIE). She holds a PhD in CIE from Lehigh University and is the owner of Grace Research Consulting. Her primary research interest examines barriers related to gender in early childhood education and primary school programs, though she also works broadly in the area of gender in education programs in K-12 and university settings. Kelly also supports the development of monitoring and evaluation (M&E) systems for education programs, specializes in project data management and analysis, and develops and implements trainings in both gender and M&E in educational settings. Her contextual area of expertise is in the Cambodian education system, though she also works with large international organizations on cross-context projects.

Macias-Alonso photo 2020

Inmaculada Macias Alonso (She/Her)


Based in Madrid, Spain, Inma has been serving in the Secretary role on an interim basis since June 2020. Inma is a postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School with the Women and Public Policy Program. Her work focuses on how involving men in care, both at home and in HEED professions (healthcare, early education, and domestic work) can further gender equality.


Daniel Sandoval (He/Him)


Daniel graduated with a BSc in Philosophy Politics and Economics from King’s College London, and is active in local movements promoting gender equality in the Philippines. Daniel currently serves as the program assistant for Transman Equality and Awareness Movement (TEAM) in Cebu City.

Chutong Zhu_ 2020

Chutong Zhu

Global Policy intern

Chutong is a recent graduate from Columbia University, School of International and Public Affairs, where her study focused on economic and political development in the Global South. She is passionate about gender equality and economic empowerment. Her most recent project studied non-tariff trade barriers for small-scale female traders between Uganda and Kenya.

Saira Zuberi (She/Her)

Communications Lead

Saira is a Gender and Diversity Consultant based in Canada. Previously, she worked to launch and develop AWID’s Challenging Religious Fundamentalisms and Women Human Rights Defenders programs. More recently, she worked with grassroots WHRDs in Asia and Africa with the International Civil Society Action Network and with UN Women/UN Trust Fund to End VAW. She will be leading efforts to expand SGPs international solidarity efforts online.


Alvin Cloyd Dakis

Solidarity Program And Partnerships

Alvin Cloyd Dakis is a Gender Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Consultant of various government agencies in the Philippines, the World Health Organization Philippines (WHO), Jhpiego, among others. He is a member of the National Gender and Development Resource Pool of the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW), and is the Lead Faculty on Gender and Development at the FAME Leaders’ Academy. He holds a master’s degree in Health Social Science, a registered nurse focusing on sexual health, and a certified Six Sigma Professional. At the age of 24, he co-authored the Implementing Rules and Regulations of the landmark Responsible Parenthood & Reproductive Health Act of 2012. He also served as the Chairperson on Health and Gender Committees of the Youth & Students Sectoral Council of the National Anti-Poverty Commission under the Office of the President.
As a gender practitioner, his focus of interests are on mainstreaming gender in the public sector and ensuring gender analysis & gender planning are efficiently implemented; the inclusion and protection of diverse people especially LGBTQIA and People with Disabilities; and the engagement of men in gender equality initiatives. 

Emilia Eyo Okon

Events And Professional Development

Emilia is an experienced development practitioner with a focus on gender mainstreaming, sexual and reproductive health adn rights, youth participation, and entrepreneurship development. She has more than 10 years of experience in program design and implementation, policy strategy development, international and national volunteer mobilization, training, and management. She has a degree in Computer Science, an Associate degree in Community and Public Health, and certifications in entrepreneurship development and project management for development. She is a Fellow of the African Women Entrepreneurship Cooperative (AWEC), New York on social enterprise development and Coady International Institute, Canada on facilitation approaches for social change. 


Eddah Kanini

Diversity and Inclusion

Eddah is a monitoring & evaluation and gender consultant based in Kenya. Eddah is the group leader of the Gender and Equity Focused Evaluation (GEFE) technical group of International Development Evaluation Association (IDEAS). Eddah has worked as a technical advisor for USAID-funded organizations, facilitating trainings, mentorship, and coaching for health systems strengthening. As a consultant, she has spearheaded evaluations for local organizations, international NGOs, and civil societies and human rights organizations. Eddah has contributed to strengthening the demand and use of evidence for policymaking through collaborating with Parliamentary Caucus on Evidence-Informed Oversight and Decision-Making (PC-EIDM) in a project funded by EvalPartners.

Zara Korutz_Co-chair of the Diversity & Inclusion Committee.

Zara Korutz (She/Her)

Co-chair of Diversity & Inclusion Committee

Zara is a 2021 PhD candidate of Sociology and Cultural Studies at Brunel University London researching culture and beauty norms. She graduated with a MA in Fashion Critical Studies at Central Saint Martins in London, with a focus on gendered bias and power. Zara has written and been a contributing editor for many publications, and prior to an academic career was a beauty artist and stylist for 15+ years as well as in the advertising industry for 10+ years.

Christina Lacey

Events and Professional Development

Christina works with social enterprises, NGOs, and feminist organizations around the world to advance gender equality and women’s rights. Drawing upon her academic background, Christina has designed interactive programs for young women and displaced youth in the United States and Latin America. In her current role, Christina connects social entrepreneurs and women-led organizations to the tools they need to grow. Christina’s passion is to bring people together to create, share, and make meaningful connections. She is excited to bring her enthusiasm and experience to the Society of Gender Professionals as an Events and Professional Development Co-Chair. 


Elizabeth “Ely” Wright Ventimillia (She/Her)

Co-chair of Solidarity Initiative and Partnerships Committee

Ely is a young feminist activist and gender professional from Ecuador and is currently working as Community Coordinator of openDemocracy’s Tracking the Backlash project. She holds a BA from Hampshire College (USA) and a Master’s degree on Gender, Violence & Conflict from the University of Sussex (UK). She’s the creator of Picture Her Story and Me Voy de Casa. At SGP she designed and launched the first co-mentorship program.

Karine Lepillez

Karine Lepillez

Founder and Advisory Council

Karine Lepillez is the Principal of Inclusive Societies, a social enterprise that provides research, training, and coaching to public and private institutions seeking to increase gender equality and inclusion in their programs and organizations. Karine works with clients such as the World Bank Group, USAID, Save the Children, and Catholic Relief Services to address social inequities in health, nutrition, agriculture, education, livelihoods, and climate change, as well as issues of gender based violence (GBV) such as child marriage, adolescent pregnancy, and intimate partner violence. Karine previously worked as USAID’s Gender Advisor in Pakistan, where she provided guidance to the U.S. Mission on the integration of gender equality and GBV prevention and response across its programming. Karine holds a B.A. in International Affairs from the George Washington University and an M.A. in International Human Rights from the University of Denver.

Dr. Lina AbiRafeh (She/Her)

Dr. Lina AbiRafeh is the Executive Director of the Arab Institute for Women at the Lebanese American University. The Institute was established in 1973 as the first women’s institute in the Arab region – and one of the first globally. 

Lina spent over 20 years in development and humanitarian contexts in countries such as Afghanistan, Haiti, Democratic Republic of Congo, Nepal, and others. Her specific expertise is in gender-based violence prevention and response, summarized by her TEDx talk, Women Deliver PowerTalkkeynote address for Swedish International Development Agency annual meeting, amongst others. Lina completed her doctoral work from the London School of Economics and published “Gender and International Aid in Afghanistan: The Politics and Effects of Intervention” based on her research. She speaks and publishes frequently on a range of gender issues, most recently on the need for a feminist response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on Arab women and girls. She believes women’s leadership is the strongest vehicle for peace and sustainable development. Lina is among the Gender Equality Top 100 worldwide in 2018 and 2019.

Dr. Myra Marx Ferree (She/Her)

Dr. Myra Marx Ferree, Alice H. Cook Professor of Sociology (emerita) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. is the author of Varieties of Feminism: German Gender Politics In Global Perspective (Stanford University Press, March 2012) and co-author with Lisa Wade of Gender: Ideas, interactions, Institutions (W.W. Norton, 2014).  Other recent books include: Gender, Violence and Human Security: Feminist Perspectives (co-edited with Aili Tripp and Christina Ewig, NYU Press 2013), Global Feminisms: Transnational Women’s Organizing, Activism, and Human Rights (co-edited with Aili Mari Tripp, NYU Press, 2006) and Shaping Abortion Discourse: Democracy and the Public Sphere in Germany and the US (with William A. Gamson, Jürgen Gerhards and Dieter Rucht, Cambridge University Press, 2002).

Aruna Rao (She/Her)

Aruna Rao, Co-Founder and former Executive Director of Gender At Work. Aruna Rao is a gender and development expert with over 35 years’ experience in pioneering new approaches to gender and institutional change. Beginning with her work with BRAC in Bangladesh, she has gone on to lead the boards of directors of the Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID) and CIVICUS, as well as serving on the board of the UN Democracy Fund. She has consulted widely with UN organizations, academic institutions, and development NGOs on gender, development and organizational change issues. In 2002, she co-created the widely used Gender at Work Analytical Framework which illustrates the interlinkages between various domains of change and highlights discriminatory social norms and deep structures that are held in place by power dynamics in organizations and communities. She co-developed with Joanne Sandler a popular training program on feminist leadership under the auspices of UN Women and taught gender and institutional change short courses for Masters’ students at the University of Sussex, UK.  She has also written extensively on gender and institutional change, including Gender at Work: Theory and Practice for 21st Century Organizations (2016), co-authored with Joanne Sandler, David Kelleher and Carol Miller and Gender at Work: Organizational Change for Equality co-authored with David Kelleher and Rieky Stuart (1999). Aruna is also the Co-host of the Gender at Work Podcast, which seeks to unite activist voices around the world to discuss emerging feminist thinking and practice and ignite collective re-imagining of feminist transformational strategies and connections.

Dr. Elisabeth Prügl (She/Her)

Dr. Elisabeth Prügl, Professor of International Relations/Political Science and Director of the Gender Centre at the Graduate Institute Geneva. In the course of her academic career in the US and Switzerland her research and teaching have focused on gender politics in international governance. She has published extensively on issues including atypical forms of women’s labour and their international regulation, the neoliberalization of feminism, and on gender expertise in international governance. She currently directs two research consortia on gender and land grabs, and gender and peacebuilding, with partners from Nigeria, Ghana, Cambodia, and Indonesia, funded by the Swiss Programme for Research on Global Issues for Development (r4d). 

Professor Prügl serves on the editorial boards of International Studies Quarterly, Review of International Political Economy, International Feminist Journal of Politics, and the European Journal of Politics and Gender. In 2019, she received the “Eminent Scholar” award of the Feminist Theory and Gender Studies Section of the International Studies Association (ISA). 

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