Staff & Leadership

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Rusty Reynolds

Executive Director
Rusty, a Charlotte native, has been with International House since February 2009 and she brings experience and expertise in project management, marketing, team building, process development and training. Her professional experience includes management positions with Bank of America, Belk Stores Services and Cadmus Communications. During her time at International House, she has managed financials, operations, volunteers and human resources. She has a bachelor's degree in business administration/accounting, and a Master of Project Management, both from Western Carolina University.
Email Rusty at rreynolds@ihclt.org
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Jelena Giric-Held

Immigration Clinic Director
Jelena first came to International House as a volunteer in 2004. In 2006 she joined the staff as operations manager and immigration paralegal. In 2014,she became our Immigration Clinic Director. She holds BIA (Board of Immigration Appeals) accreditation which means she can represent clients in much the same way an attorney can. 
Email Jelena at jheld@ihclt.org
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Johnelle M. Causwell

Citizen Diplomacy Program Director
Johnelle has been working with International House since 2012. Hailing from Kingston, Jamaica, she graduated from Warren Wilson College with a major in Economics and a minor in Political Science. After almost a decade in advertising, Johnelle transitioned her career as an agency Creative Director to her other passion, International Relations. She currently works on the local level to administer the Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program along with other international professional and youth exchange programs. Johnelle has been instrumental in the founding of the Young Professionals @ International House and she currently acts as Staff Liaison. She has been selected as one of Charlotte's Top 40 Under 40 Professionals by the Charlotte Business Journal for 2016 and was the 2013 recipient of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce’s Young Professional Newcomer of the Year Award. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Charlotte Chamber Young Professionals and the Johnson C. Smith University Multicultural Diversity Board.
Email Johnelle at jcauswell@ihclt.org
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Stephanie Galeotti, EdD

Director of Education
Dr. Stephanie Galeotti, also known as “Dr. G” by her students, is an energetic educator, highly motivated servant leader, avid traveler, and distance runner. A native of Charlotte, she spent a decade living across the United States and most recently in Astana, Kazakhstan. She brings professional experience in teaching, leadership, and nonprofit work. More specifically, Stephanie has expertise in ESL/ELL, literacy, curriculum development, instructional design, mentoring, professional development, program evaluation, strategic planning, fundraising, and organizational development. Her passion for volunteerism is evident by her continued work with Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools (NorthStar Reading Program tutor) and Girls on the Run Union County (board member). She holds several degrees: Doctorate of Education from Seattle University, Master’s in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University, Bachelor’s in Communications from UNC Charlotte, and Teaching English as a Second Language (TESOL certification). Stephanie loves working with Charlotte’s immigrant and refugee community, supporting both students and families in their quest to improve English literacy skills and gain U.S. citizenship.
Email Stephanie at sgaleotti@ihclt.org
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Anne Crotty

Immigration Attorney
Anne Crotty joined International House in 2005 as an attorney with the Ginter Immigration Law Clinic after prior work as a legal services attorney in Pennsylvania and in private practice in North Carolina and served as Clinic Director for over eight years. Her career has focused upon serving low-income people, and she is especially grateful for the privilege of serving our clients. Anne also was on the faculty of Independence High School in the International Studies and International Baccalaureate programs and has worked as a freelance writer. She is a member of the North Carolina Bar and holds a bachelor's and a law degree from the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) and also a master's degree in teaching from Wesleyan University (Connecticut). 
Email Anne at acrotty@ihclt.org
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Liz Zipperer

Immigration Attorney
Liz studied International Studies and Spanish at Virginia Tech. She attended law school in North Carolina, and graduated with Pro-Bono Honors distinctions. Liz was recognized for the highest distinction of having completed over 300 hours of pro-bono service in the Charlotte area. Liz is a member of the North Carolina Bar Association, Mecklenburg County Bar, and American Immigration Lawyers Association. As a daughter of a first generation Mexican immigrant she has a personal as well as an academic understanding of the political and economic struggles in the countries from which many immigrants flee. Her understanding has inspired her desire to devote her legal career to the immigrant community.
Email Liz at lzipperer@ihclt.org

Alma Hernandez

Client Services Director
Prior to arriving in Charlotte, Alma worked for a decade in Education, teaching Bilingual/ESL elementary K-5; often leading after-school programs for students and parents. Since her arrival in Charlotte, she has been a volunteer with Action NC, Women Voting our Values, and she is VP of the National Organization of Women of Charlotte. Working at the International House in this way allows her to work with and serve the community. Born of parents who immigrated here from Mexico, Alma understands the struggle of being in a new country. Thanks to local community support, ESL and citizenship classes were available to her family. Alma believes in giving back. 
Email Alma at ahernandez@ihclt.org
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Carole Ward

Development Director
Carole began as a volunteer at International House in 2012 before she was hired as Citizen Diplomacy Program Associate. These days, she's writing grants and supporting development efforts. In addition to her Bachelor's degree, she obtained a Masters in Social Work from Tulane University and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from Winthrop University. As a life-long resident of the Charlotte area, Carole is happy to see the city’s growth in diversity. Whenever possible, she enjoys traveling.
Email Carole at cward@ihclt.org
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Nina Saralidze

Program Coordinator
Nina is the Program Associate with the Citizen Diplomacy Program at International House. Originally from the Republic of Georgia, she has called Charlotte home for 12 years. She has a degree in International Relations and Political Science from University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Nine has worked at the International House previously as an intern and during that time was chosen as the Global Ties’ Emerging Leader in 2015. She is genuinely happy about being a part of this team and contributing to this great cause that unites us all.
Email Nina at nsaralidze@ihclt.org
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Samantha Williams

Volunteer Coordinator
Originally coming to International House as an AmeriCorps member, Samantha serves as the International House’s Volunteer Coordinator. She is a native of Charlotte but has spent the last 8 years living in Greensboro where she earned a BA in International and Global studies at UNC-Greensboro. She recently returned to Charlotte to work on a Master’s degree in Communications at Queen’s University.
Email Samantha at swilliams@ihclt.org

BOARD OF DIRECTORS


Satoshi Watanabe

President
Wells Fargo & Company

Cynthia Aziz

Vice President
Aziz Law Firm

Jose Merino

Treasurer
Duke Energy

Arlene Cash

Secretary
Carolinas HealthCare System

Vince Altamura

Wells Fargo & Company

Dr. Maha Gingrich

Central Piedmont Community College

Dana Hicks

PURPLAN

Charles Lansden

Winstead PC, Counsel

Benjamin M. Li

Private Attorney

T. Minh Tran

Piedmont Natural Gas, Retired

Lori Vaccaro

 G2H Consulting

Sam Wazan

Community Leader and Author