OUR TEAM

Cassandra Lee , Co-Founder & Executive Director

Cassandra Lee, Co-Founder & Executive Director

Edison Lee , Co-Founder & Managing Director

Edison Lee, Co-Founder & Managing Director

Mboto Mathe , DRC Country Director

Mboto Mathe, DRC Country Director

Rachel Vuseghesa , Office Manager (DRC), WASH Program Manager

Rachel Vuseghesa, Office Manager (DRC), WASH Program Manager

 
Jen Chai , Office Manager (US)

Jen Chai, Office Manager (US)

Djimmy Mathe , Trauma Care Program Manager

Djimmy Mathe, Trauma Care Program Manager

Nicole Peters , Strategic Partnerships Manager

Nicole Peters, Strategic Partnerships Manager

Aline Mungumua , Gender Rights Program Manager

Aline Mungumua, Gender Rights Program Manager

 
Elizabeth Lampen , Leadership Development Program Manager

Elizabeth Lampen, Leadership Development Program Manager

Jemima Ooi , Leadership Development Program Manager, East Asia Regional Representative

Jemima Ooi, Leadership Development Program Manager, East Asia Regional Representative

Oladapo Owo , Programs Director

Oladapo Owo, Programs Director

 
Ee-Reh Owo , Schools Director

Ee-Reh Owo, Schools Director

 
Esther , Finance Administrative Assistant

Esther, Finance Administrative Assistant

 
 

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BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Cassandra Lee  Cassandra Lee is the Co-Founder and President of Justice Rising. She has over ten years of international experience living and working in conflict areas around the world, including Southern Sudan during the Darfur crisis, Northern Uganda, the Middle East where she worked with Syrian refugees, and in North Korea. For the past seven years, she has worked primarily in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a country defined by war and conflict for over twenty years. Cassandra currently resides in Los Angeles, CA with her husband Edison Lee.

Cassandra Lee
Cassandra Lee is the Co-Founder and President of Justice Rising. She has over ten years of international experience living and working in conflict areas around the world, including Southern Sudan during the Darfur crisis, Northern Uganda, the Middle East where she worked with Syrian refugees, and in North Korea. For the past seven years, she has worked primarily in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a country defined by war and conflict for over twenty years. Cassandra currently resides in Los Angeles, CA with her husband Edison Lee.

Edison Lee  Edison Lee is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of Justice Rising. He previously worked at FBR & Co., a leading middle-market investment bank, advising clients on strategic alternatives and equity / debt capital raises. After graduating from the School of Architecture at the University of Southern California in 2009, Edison moved to Zimbabwe as a missionary and development aid worker. He later moved to Rwanda and worked as a Business Analyst with Karisimbi Business Partners, a strategy consulting firm focused on developing management capacity for high impact businesses in East Africa. He currently resides in Los Angeles, CA with his wife, Cassandra Lee.

Edison Lee
Edison Lee is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of Justice Rising. He previously worked at FBR & Co., a leading middle-market investment bank, advising clients on strategic alternatives and equity / debt capital raises. After graduating from the School of Architecture at the University of Southern California in 2009, Edison moved to Zimbabwe as a missionary and development aid worker. He later moved to Rwanda and worked as a Business Analyst with Karisimbi Business Partners, a strategy consulting firm focused on developing management capacity for high impact businesses in East Africa. He currently resides in Los Angeles, CA with his wife, Cassandra Lee.

Dr. Sarah Whittaker-Howe  Dr Sarah is an expert in the psychological impact and recovery from war, conflict, and related human rights abuses. She has considerable experience providing psychological interventions for those suffering with complex trauma reactions including war veterans and survivors of terrorism, torture and sexual violence. She is currently working internationally providing assessment, clinical intervention and expert witness for human right abuses and war crimes investigations. Sarah has a strong commitment to non-profit organizations working within conflict zones. She partners with organizations in the Middle East and Africa providing consultation and developing programs and training opportunities that address the mental health needs of war affected communities and refugee populations.

Dr. Sarah Whittaker-Howe
Dr Sarah is an expert in the psychological impact and recovery from war, conflict, and related human rights abuses. She has considerable experience providing psychological interventions for those suffering with complex trauma reactions including war veterans and survivors of terrorism, torture and sexual violence. She is currently working internationally providing assessment, clinical intervention and expert witness for human right abuses and war crimes investigations. Sarah has a strong commitment to non-profit organizations working within conflict zones. She partners with organizations in the Middle East and Africa providing consultation and developing programs and training opportunities that address the mental health needs of war affected communities and refugee populations.

Alvin Chung  Alvin Chun is the President of Counterpointe Solutions, Inc., an Information Technology company he founded in 2005. He is also the Senior Leader and Founder of NewSong Church, a church plant started in 2005. Alvin studied at Brandeis University and, after graduation, worked as a financial analyst at Cambridge Associates. A few years later, he attended Chesapeake Theological Seminary to pursue his Masters of Divinity and moved jobs to Capital Management Strategies. In 1999, he was ordained at New Covenant Fellowship Church and he left the financial industry to serve full time as an associate pastor. Alvin and his wife, Christine, with their six children, currently reside in the Washington, DC area.

Alvin Chung
Alvin Chun is the President of Counterpointe Solutions, Inc., an Information Technology company he founded in 2005. He is also the Senior Leader and Founder of NewSong Church, a church plant started in 2005. Alvin studied at Brandeis University and, after graduation, worked as a financial analyst at Cambridge Associates. A few years later, he attended Chesapeake Theological Seminary to pursue his Masters of Divinity and moved jobs to Capital Management Strategies. In 1999, he was ordained at New Covenant Fellowship Church and he left the financial industry to serve full time as an associate pastor. Alvin and his wife, Christine, with their six children, currently reside in the Washington, DC area.

 
Jason Wendle   Jason is a Director at the Global Develpoment Incubator (GDI), working in the AgEnterprise portfolio and also spearheading GDI’s emerging anti-human trafficking efforts. At GDI, he most recently directed the launch of the Mastercard Foundation  Rural and Agricultural Finance Learning Lab . As a senior advisor to the Lab, he supports a research agenda to advance the knowledge frontier in smallholder finance, and advises the directors of $175M worth of programs on how to measure impact and capture actionable learnings.  Jason helped design the Learning Lab for the Mastercard Foundation as an Associate Partner in the Nairobi office of Dalberg, where he spent 7 years providing strategy advice to clients across a broad range sectors . His clients have included the world’s largest private foundations, bilateral and multilateral donors, African governments, and Fortune 100 firms. He also provided leadership to Dalberg’s evaluation work on the continent. Jason holds an MPA/ID from Harvard’s Kennedy School, and has published and presented work on smallholder finance, SME banking, and impact measurement. Jason lives with his wife Krista and their three kids in the DC area.

Jason Wendle

Jason is a Director at the Global Develpoment Incubator (GDI), working in the AgEnterprise portfolio and also spearheading GDI’s emerging anti-human trafficking efforts. At GDI, he most recently directed the launch of the Mastercard Foundation Rural and Agricultural Finance Learning Lab. As a senior advisor to the Lab, he supports a research agenda to advance the knowledge frontier in smallholder finance, and advises the directors of $175M worth of programs on how to measure impact and capture actionable learnings.

Jason helped design the Learning Lab for the Mastercard Foundation as an Associate Partner in the Nairobi office of Dalberg, where he spent 7 years providing strategy advice to clients across a broad range sectors . His clients have included the world’s largest private foundations, bilateral and multilateral donors, African governments, and Fortune 100 firms. He also provided leadership to Dalberg’s evaluation work on the continent. Jason holds an MPA/ID from Harvard’s Kennedy School, and has published and presented work on smallholder finance, SME banking, and impact measurement. Jason lives with his wife Krista and their three kids in the DC area.

Jennifer Toledo  Jennifer Toledo is Founder and Director of The Justice Group, a platform to know, speak and do justice. As a speaker, author, and social justice activist with over a decade of international field experience, she brings a compelling and fresh voice to the global justice movement. Jennifer is also the Senior Associate Pastor at Expression 58 church in Glendale, CA. She and her husband, Jona Toldeo, have 3 kids and reside in Southern California.

Jennifer Toledo
Jennifer Toledo is Founder and Director of The Justice Group, a platform to know, speak and do justice. As a speaker, author, and social justice activist with over a decade of international field experience, she brings a compelling and fresh voice to the global justice movement. Jennifer is also the Senior Associate Pastor at Expression 58 church in Glendale, CA. She and her husband, Jona Toldeo, have 3 kids and reside in Southern California.

Ryan Juenger   Ryan Juenger is a California licensed CPA specializing in corporate financial reporting, technical accounting, business finance, and strategy. After graduating cum laude from the University of Southern California, Ryan worked for seven years in the assurance practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP and three years in corporate accounting at Western Digital Corporation. He is currently the International Finance Director at Behr Process Corporation. Ryan has a heart for justice, upholding the cause of the oppressed, and seeing lives transformed. He resides in Costa Mesa, CA

Ryan Juenger

Ryan Juenger is a California licensed CPA specializing in corporate financial reporting, technical accounting, business finance, and strategy. After graduating cum laude from the University of Southern California, Ryan worked for seven years in the assurance practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP and three years in corporate accounting at Western Digital Corporation. He is currently the International Finance Director at Behr Process Corporation. Ryan has a heart for justice, upholding the cause of the oppressed, and seeing lives transformed. He resides in Costa Mesa, CA

April Tam Smith   April Tam Smith is a devoted philanthropist, finance professional, and socially-conscious entrepreneur living in New York City. She is currently a Managing Director in a top tier investment bank’s equity derivatives team, covering hedgefunds. At age 30, April founded P.S. Kitchen, a social enterprise vegan restaurant in Times Square that donates 100% of its net profits to philanthropic endeavors, while providing gainful employment to those who need a second chance in the local community, including the formerly incarcerated, victims of domestic violence, and those struggling with homelessness. April was the recipient of the 2018 Columbia Tamer Center Social Enterprise Award, the 2018 50 Outstanding Asian Americans in Business Award, and the 2015 John Mack Leadership Award. She received her Bachelor's of Science in Engineering from MIT in 2005 and her MBA from Columbia Business School in 2009.

April Tam Smith

April Tam Smith is a devoted philanthropist, finance professional, and socially-conscious entrepreneur living in New York City. She is currently a Managing Director in a top tier investment bank’s equity derivatives team, covering hedgefunds. At age 30, April founded P.S. Kitchen, a social enterprise vegan restaurant in Times Square that donates 100% of its net profits to philanthropic endeavors, while providing gainful employment to those who need a second chance in the local community, including the formerly incarcerated, victims of domestic violence, and those struggling with homelessness. April was the recipient of the 2018 Columbia Tamer Center Social Enterprise Award, the 2018 50 Outstanding Asian Americans in Business Award, and the 2015 John Mack Leadership Award. She received her Bachelor's of Science in Engineering from MIT in 2005 and her MBA from Columbia Business School in 2009.

 
Warren Allan   Warren Allan is the President of Optivest Properties, founded in 2007, which currently operates 90 self-storage facilities as RightSpace Storage (  www.rightspacestorage.com  ) throughout the United States. Prior to Optivest Properties, Warren began his self-storage career as the Operations Director of another large regional storage operator. He is also one of the founding partners of the largest publicly traded self-storage REIT –  National Storage Affiliates  ( NYSE: NSA ) formed in April 2015. Warren and his wife, Kristy, have been married for 38 years and enjoy splitting their time between Dana Point (CA) and Park City (UT). They have three grown children along with one grandson. Warren and Kristy are both Directors in the Optivest Foundation that was formed in 2007 together with Warren’s business partner, Mark Van Mourick. Their objective has been to contribute 10% of the gross revenue generated by the business enterprise to primarily benefit, faith-based humanitarian initiatives. To date, they have made more than $1.4 million in grants towards projects in the US and other countries around the world.

Warren Allan

Warren Allan is the President of Optivest Properties, founded in 2007, which currently operates 90 self-storage facilities as RightSpace Storage (www.rightspacestorage.com) throughout the United States. Prior to Optivest Properties, Warren began his self-storage career as the Operations Director of another large regional storage operator. He is also one of the founding partners of the largest publicly traded self-storage REIT – National Storage Affiliates (NYSE: NSA) formed in April 2015. Warren and his wife, Kristy, have been married for 38 years and enjoy splitting their time between Dana Point (CA) and Park City (UT). They have three grown children along with one grandson. Warren and Kristy are both Directors in the Optivest Foundation that was formed in 2007 together with Warren’s business partner, Mark Van Mourick. Their objective has been to contribute 10% of the gross revenue generated by the business enterprise to primarily benefit, faith-based humanitarian initiatives. To date, they have made more than $1.4 million in grants towards projects in the US and other countries around the world.

 

 

ADVISORY BOARD

Shawn and Cherie Bolz
iCreate Productions & Bolz Ministries

Thaddaeus Nichols
Director of Church Engagement and Marketing,
International Justice Mission

Brit Gilmore
President, The Giving Keys

Bill White
Associate, McKinsey & Co

 

Sarita Hartz
Founder & Director, Zion Project

Ryan Bethea
Founder, Silas Ventures