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Our Team

Human Rights Connected draws upon the drive, expertise and creative energy of our team members and growing circle of independent international collaborators to fulfill our mission to make knowledge about strategic nonviolent action and human rights mechanisms more accessible to activists and human rights defenders. We also strive to foster a learning environment where our team and partners develop important skills while working toward our common vision. Join our team!

Nicola Barrach-Yousefi

Founder and Executive Director

Based in Paris, France

Over a decade of experience working with and supporting movements and human rights defenders around the world designing and implementing field projects and programs including trainings, facilitation, curriculum design and translations. Senior Advisor for civic initiatives at the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict (ICNC). Founded Human Rights Connected (HRC) in 2011. Passionate about civil resistance theory and practice, human rights education and how new and old technology can be leveraged to advance human rights movements.

Matthew Parsons

Research & Operations Associate

Based in Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Directs research strategy and curation of practical resources for HRC’s human rights library. Manages operations and communications for our international team of collaborators. Aspiring human rights lawyer interested in racial justice, LGBTQ+ equity, and government transparency and accountability. Accreditation and Curriculum Coordinator at Civic Works’ Baltimore Center for Green Careers, which works to make Baltimore’s economy more equitable and sustainable. Joined the HRC team in 2013 as a Research & Operations Intern.

Sabrina Sanchez

Education & Communications Associate

Based in Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Leads educational initiatives and supports implementation of communications techniques to inform human rights and civil resistance education to human rights defenders. Conducts research on the gaps of human rights education instruction. Educator, leader, and social justice advocate motivated by the power of youth resilience; Masters in international and multicultural education with human rights emphasis. Substantive experience working with nonprofit organizations. Joined HRC in 2015 as a Research & Operations Intern.

Alannah Bonalos

Community Engagement Associate

Based in Sacramento, California, USA

Engages the HRC community and connects international human rights institutions with grassroots movements. Brand ambassador, increasing awareness of HRC’s mission and vision and encourages our community to utilize the resource library. Studied International Development Studies and Political Science at UCLA. Helps non-profits build capacity with lean programmatic strategy and successful development campaigns. An illustrator and designer with demonstrated interest in improving maternal health in underserved communities/conflict zones and protecting women's reproductive health rights.

Ilias Bartolini

Chief Technical Advisor

Based in Barcelona, Spain

Providing support and guiding the implementation of HRC tech initiatives. Software engineer and technologist passionate about free & open source software, digital rights, coaching, and direct action. Currently serving as lead consultant at ThoughtWorks building digital products and digital transformation initiatives internationally. Always looking at how to put digital social innovation at the service of others.

Luke Chang

Web and Technology

Based in Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Provides web support and development for HRC. Aims to utilize web technologies to spread HRC's mission throughout the digital world, to stimulate discussion and digital interaction, and to optimize user experience.

Rosalie Candau

Program Assistant

Based in Cleveland, Ohio, USA

Passionate about human rights, with a focus on women’s rights and human trafficking, having done research on these topics. Recently completed a Master of Law at Universidad de Alcalá in Madrid, Spain, writing a thesis on how violence against women constitutes a human rights violation. Currently works at her city's Legal Aid Society to improve access to justice for low-income and vulnerable individuals and volunteers with her city’s domestic violence shelter as a hotline advocate.

Nnenna Mazi Intern

Research and Operations

Based in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria

Passionate about pro bono legal assistance for the vulnerable. Interested in human rights and public international law. Degree in Law from Madonna University, Okija and Masters degree in International Law from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. Previous experiences include a year's service at the Legal Aid Council and a legal internship at the National Human Rights Commission, Nigeria. Enjoys travelling, gardening and trying out new cuisine.

Divya Korada

Research and Operations Intern

Based in Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Senior at Johns Hopkins University majoring in International Studies and Political Science and minoring in Islamic Studies. Interested in food justice, migration, and community organizing. Involved in urban agriculture and sex workers’ rights in Baltimore

Kyra Tessmann

Education & Communications Intern

Based in Indiana, USA

I am a junior English Major (Spanish Minor) at Valparaiso University in Indiana, USA. I work as a writing consultant at my university, and I enjoy using my writing skills and knowledge to spread information and help others learn how to communicate more effectively. I studied abroad in Costa Rica from January to May of 2018, and I interned there at a non-profit organization called Fundación Mujer. I found HRC by using the library as a resource for my research at Fundación Mujer, and I am thrilled to now be a part of HRC as an Education and Communications intern.

Matthew Oettinger

Web Development and Technology

Based in Reston, Virginia, USA

Matthew brings over a decade of experience as a developer to the growing tech team at HRC. He has recently become more involved in human rights and hopes to use his talents to help HRC bring its resources to those that need them most, no matter their location in the world. When he is not working, he’s reading to either himself or his two boys.

Laura Schroeder

Social Media Correspondent

Based in Washington, D.C, USA

Live tweets human rights and nonviolent resistance-related events for HRC. Finishing a graduate degree in international policy and development at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey with a focus on human rights and policy advocacy. Passionate about Latin America with work experience in Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, and Peru. Joined HRC in February 2017 as a Community Engagement Intern and continued as a Community Engagement Program Assistant and Podcast Producer.

Pouya Yousefi

Technical Advisor

Based in Paris, France

Provides technical direction, support, and guidance for the HRC team. Currently serving the Analytics Center of Excellence in IQVIA as their Lead Data Science Developer, Pouya's 20+ year tech career has spanned working as a software developer, team lead, and principal consultant to more recently as a machine learning engineer. Passionate about natural language processing algorithms and repurposing them for behavioral pattern recognition.