Board of Directors
Carey was born and raised in a small coastal community in Northern California. She received her BA in Education from Emory
Ben Thrower M.D. is a neurologist and has served as the Medical Director of the Andrew C. Carlos MS Institute at Shepherd since 2001. Prior to that, he served as Medical Director of the Holy Family MS Center in Spokane, Washington. Dr. Thrower is the Senior Medical Advisor to the MS Foundation and has served on the boards of the Consortium of MS Centers and the Georgia Chapter of the National MS Society. He is the recipient of the Norm Cohn Hope Chest Award from the National MS Society and was the first physician inductee into the Georgia Chapter Volunteer Hall of Fame. He co-authored Navigating Life with MS and is the principal investigator on many clinical MS studies.
Leslie was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. After graduating from Syracuse University Leslie moved to Los Angeles where he worked in commercial real estate before joining the US Peace Corps. Leslie served as a Peace Corps Volunteer for 3 years while living in the department capital of Rivas in Nicaragua. He taught entrepreneurship to high school students and implemented various initiatives to support personal & professional development, financial planning, and leadership amongst locals.. Currently residing in San Juan del Sur, Leslie is an active real estate investor and consultant.
Born and Raised in Jupiter, Florida, Karen attended college at Florida State University where she received her B.S. in biology. After receiving medical training from the University of Florida College of Medicine, she completed her pediatric residency in San Antonio at Wilford Hall USAF Medical Center. A tour of duty with the Air Force led her to reach the rank of major until her obligation was completed in 1995. After a trip to Nicaragua in 2014, Karen and her husband, Ben, immediately felt a connection with the people. This has led to a commitment of supporting the people of Los Robles, to introducing their experiences to their friends, colleagues, and family, many of whom have joined them on medical mission trips. She looks forward to continuing the goals of improving the quality of health and life for the wonderful people of Los Robles. Karen now practices general pediatrics and works part-time for a private practice in Marietta, GA
Mathew Mendonca spends his summers fighting forest fires in his home state of Oregon as a smokejumper. During the winters he has had the opportunity to travel in Latin America, and in 2010 he found himself in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua, and began to
MICHELLE MARINO DRILL
Michelle earned an English degree from Rollins College in
Austin received a B.A. from Rollins College in
Brandon Pittman is a Senior Developer, Trainer, and Director of Business Development for Teksouth Corporation’s Huntsville Office, and currently resides in Madison, Alabama. With a technology degree in Computer Information Systems from Athens State University in 2003, Brandon has held many positions across multiple organizations in the defense industry. He got involved with Comunidad Connect after a visit to Finca el Peten and San Juan del Sur during a vacation in 2010 and has been an active board member since 2011. Brandon currently serves as the Vice Chair for Comunidad Connect. He is also a licensed Foster and Adoptive Parent in Madison County Alabama and enjoys spending time with his family, riding his motorcycle, and youth ministry in the ELCA Southeastern Synod
Dan is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, The George Washington University Law School, and Emory University’s Goizueta Business School where he studied Entrepreneurship and Finance. An experienced negotiator, strategist, and adviser, he is a valuable new addition to our Board of Directors. Dan’s experience includes managing complex transactions, compliance projects and corporate governance in the United States and international markets. In his spare time, he enjoys fishing, flying (he holds a private pilot’s license), and hiking in the North Georgia mountains
For more than ten years, Kristine has worked in the development field as a fundraiser, writer, field photographer, graphic designer and knowledge management specialist on major international projects. Before starting her own media consultation company, she created a multi-media communications campaign for UNICEF’s emergency program in the Philippines, incorporating content from 12 INGO partners. Kristine’s passion is giving a voice to growing organizations who make an impact on global suffering, regardless of their size or access to resources. She officially joined the board in March 2018.
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Telephone: +1(404) 444-9147