Executive Director Email
David graduated with a degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Alberta in 1982 and completed his MBA from the same institution in 1989. David has taught business at the University of St. Martin and entrepreneurship programs at Conestoga College. He also operated his own business consultancy Future by Design and worked in contract programming for the University of Western Ontario.
David first worked at World Accord as a consultant in 1998 and joined the organization full time in April of 1999, bringing with him a wide scope of skills and abilities. From the beginning of his tenure with World Accord David has gained a solid understanding of the development process and an appreciation for the many lasting accomplishments that international partners are able to achieve through partnership with World Accord. David is a member of the Kitchener-Westmount Rotary club where he is currently the chair of the international committee.
Program Coordinator Email
Isabelle has over twenty years of experience working in international development and emergency relief programs in countries such as Ethiopia, Haiti, Mozambique, Mali, Niger and Cambodia. She has worked with international non-governmental organizations (INGO’s,) United Nations agencies as well as the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. She collaborated in the creation and implementation of community mobilization projects that integrate the gender, agriculture and community health components. Isabelle has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Sciences and Masters in International Development.
Isabelle joined the World Accord Team in the fall of 2015 from her last position as Assistant Director with Herstreet, a Montreal community-based organization that works with homeless women. She brings her experience in program development and implementation, project coordination as well as creation and maintaining of partnerships and her knowledge of international development issues.
Isabelle is a member of the Food Security Policy Group, and the Canadian Coalition on Climate Change and Development (C4D) as well a Director for the Ontario Council for International Cooperation.
She is also eager to bridge local to global issues in order to contribute to attaining the Sustainable Development Goals.
Administrative Assistant Email
Ann came to World Accord in 1999 after many years of working in accounting management in Belleville. Ann lives in Kitchener where she also received her formal education. Ann manages several portfolios of work at World Accord, including the accurate maintenance of all financial records, donor data, payables, payroll, banking and program funding records.Ann has also worked with World Accord’s partners in Central America, training program staff in financial management information systems.
Chad Dailey. President (Campbellville, ON, Canada)
A small business owner, Chad has been involved with World Accord as a supporter since the age of 15 and has fully bought into their development philosophy. Currently Chad is one of the planning team members of the World Accord Gala which runs in the Greater Toronto Area in support of programs in the field. Chad met his wife, Shannon, at a Fastathon (one of the key fundraising events) and he attributes the success of his marriage to their common love of the cause of World Accord.
Farrah Ali-Khan. Vice President (Toronto, ON, Canada)
Farrah has over twenty years of experience working on environmental programs and initiatives, complemented by a deep commitment to environmental sustainability and social justice. Her diverse portfolio has allowed her to work with NGOs, governments and communities within Canada and internationally, including several countries within Latin America. She is well-acquainted with World Accord’s incredible partners, having worked with them over two years. She currently works as a senior policy analyst with the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation of Parks, developing programs and policies concerning climate change and now resource recovery. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and Masters in Environmental Studies. She is based in Toronto and when not working, can be found at a yoga studio, biking across the city or enjoying the cafés of Toronto with her friends and family.
Mary Pearson. Treasurer (Corunna, ON, Canada)
Mary in an entrepreneur running a small business that provides bookkeeping and other business services to her community. This experience serves her well in the role of Treasurer on World Accord’s board of directors. As an individual, Mary is dedicated to personal evolution to become one’s best so she is right at home in an organization that seeks to help individuals and communities develop and evolve into Communities that Thrive.
Mary-Ann Kruse. Secretary (Oakville, ON, Canada)
Mary-Ann Kruse is a retired educator whose passion for social justice led to her involvement with World Accord since 2004. Her commitment to World Accord was strengthen by having the privilege of being hosted by our partner in Guatemala to see first hand the work of that is being done with the guidance and support of World Accord staff. She has been involved in a number of fundraising projects over the years including the Gala.
Leah Christensen. Director (New Westminster, BC, Canada)
Leah was introduced to the idea of international development by Terry Fielder, the founder of World Accord, when she was 10 years old. Since then, she has been a supporter of the organization and its ideals of social & economic justice. After years of studying and living abroad, she has committed herself to public education as a force for social change. As a teacher and administrator, Leah’s professional focus has been the creation of authentic, just and compassionate school communities at both the elementary and secondary levels. Currently a principal and teacher educator in the Surrey, BC school district, she holds Masters degrees in Canadian cultural policy and outdoor education.
A passionate camper, walker and baker, Leah also values yoga and music to keep her body and spirit going.
Marjorie Hechavarria. Director (Vaughn, ON, Canada)
Marjorie has over twenty-five years of experience with a proven track record for developing high performing teams, delivering technology initiatives and managing risk in the financial services industry. She is passionate about women’s empowerment and the protection of human rights. Marjorie is bilingual and has international work experience in Cuba, Ireland, the USA and India. She holds a Science Degree in Hydraulic Engineering from Havana University in Cuba and a Computer Programmer Diploma from George Brown College, Toronto. She immigrated to Canada in 1995 and brings to World Accord the personal experience of growing up in Latin America.
James Bennett. Director (Kitchener, ON, Canada)
James has experience across a number of industries, having worked in various capacities within the restaurant, retail, manufacturing, financial and technology sectors as both an employee and a consultant. Most recently he has been focusing on leadership development and has been associated with the John Maxwell organization.
James was drawn to World Accord in part because of their operating philosophy that empowers locals to be a part of the change that they are seeking vs the recipient of a grant and also because he truly believes in the potential of people to make a difference when the right circumstances are presented.
James has been involved with World Accord since 2014 participating in several Construction Expeditions as well as supporting events like the Black and White Gala since its inauguration.
Scott Murphy. Director (Indendence MO, USA)
Scott Murphy has served as a member of the First Presidency of Community of Christ since April 2013. The First Presidency provides primary leadership to the international body of Community of Christ. In his role in the First Presidency, Scott functions as the chief operating officer for the operations and mission of the church in the 59 difference nations where the church is present. Community of Christ International Headquarters is located in Independence, Missouri.
Scott’s past assignments with Community of Christ include director of human resource ministries at International Headquarters, president of Lamoni-Heartland USA Mission Center; Des Moines Stake president; Lamoni Stake acting president; and Advanced Leadership Studies.
Scott also served 19 years as a school principal, counselor, and music educator.
A native of Washington, Scott received a bachelor of arts in music education and a master of education in counseling from Eastern Washington University. He pursued advanced education in school administration at the University of Washington in 1991-1992. He further received a master of arts in religion from Community of Christ Seminary at Graceland University, Independence, Missouri in 2003.
World Accord Advisory Committee
Dr. Prateep Nayak, Professor (University of Waterloo, ON, Canada)
Prateep Nayak is an Associate Professor in the School of Environment, Enterprise and Development, Faculty of Environment at the University of Waterloo. He has an academic background in political science, environmental studies and international development, and holds a PhD in Natural Resources and Environmental Management from University of Manitoba. He engages in interdisciplinary scholarship with an active interest in combining social and ecological perspectives. Prateep’s research focuses on the understanding of complex human-environment connections (or disconnections) in coastal-marine systems with particular attention to social-ecological change, its drivers, their influence and possible ways to deal with them. His main research interests include coastal commons, environmental change and governance, social-ecological system resilience and regime shifts, environmental justice and political ecology. Prateep is currently implementing collaborative research projects that focus on small-scale fishery systems in South and South-East Asia. He is also actively involved in a number of global research networks such as Too Big To Ignore (TBTI), Community Conservation Research Network (CCRN), Dried Fish Matters (DFM). Prateep is a member of the Human Dimensions Working Group of the Integrated Marine Biosphere Research (IMBeR) and a Lead Author for the IPBES Global Assessment on Sustainable Use of Wild Species. In the past, Prateep worked as a development professional in South Asia on issues around community-based governance of land, water and forests, focusing specifically at the interface of research, implementation and public policy. He is a past SSHRC Banting Fellow, Trudeau Scholar, a Harvard Giorgio Ruffolo Fellow in Sustainability Science and a recipient of Canada’s Governor General Academic Gold Medal.
Dr. Laxmi Pant, Professor (University of Guelph, ON, Canada)
Laxmi Prasad Pant, PhD, is a Senior Lecturer in Human Geography and Food Systems at the Natural Resources Institute of the University of Greenwich and remains associated with the University of Guelph through projects he is currently working on. His research focuses specifically on capacity development for agricultural and rural innovation, sustainability transitions, public engagement in emerging technologies, and teaching controversial issues. He has worked at multiple universities, including Queen’s University and the University of Waterloo, in Canada and internationally.
Laxmi has taught at the University of Guelph and the University of Waterloo for undergraduate and graduate courses on international development, rural extension, communication, capacity development, community development, and research methods. Before coming to academia, he worked as an extension facilitator engaging smallholder farmers in participatory research and development, such as farmers’ field schools, agroecosystem analysis, and on-farm trials.
Dr. Alicia Sliwinski, Professor (Wilfred Laurier University, ON, Canada)
Dr. Sliwinski received her PhD (2005) and M.Sc. (1996) in Anthropology and a B.A. in Art History (1991) from the Université de Montréal. She also received a post-graduate diploma in management from the École des Hautes Études Commerciales in 1998. Prior to her doctoral studies, De. Sliwinski worked as a consultant in international development project and program evaluation. She grew up in Montreal and speaks French, English, and Spanish. Her research has focused on the moral economies of humanitarian action and the dynamics of post-disaster reconstruction, namely in Central America. Dr. Sliwinski is interested in topics relating to the politics of community participation, social inequality, theories of gift and exchange, and questions about hope, value and utopianism as they manifest in development and salvational practices.
Narinder Sharma, (Guelph, ON, Canada)
Narinder Sharma is a dedicated Humanitarian and Development professional, with over 30 years of experience providing leadership and developmental assistance within developing countries including Uganda, Sudan (Darfur), Syria, Iran, Somalia, Angola, Yemen, Kenya, India. Notably, he has spent over 25 years with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) holding the positions of Chief of Field Offices, Program coordinator, and Water and Environmental Sanitation Expert.
He has led and managed teams up to 180 staff members, as well as managed programs with yearly budgets of more than $25m. These programs included development and humanitarian assistance related to refugee and internally displaced persons, coordinated large-scale relief operations in natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, disease outbreaks, and drought. In all these situations, he was involved in program management, including recovery and reconstruction, infrastructure development, provision of drinking water and sanitation, primary education, primary healthcare (women and child health) and nutrition, child rights, and community/youth development, along with particular interventions such as FGM, HIV/AIDS, Gender Violence, Gender Equality and Child Soldiers
Narinder has diplomatically handled challenging assignments and negotiated with national governments, rebel, and armed militia groups. The countries he served in have a history of challenging political environments and armed conflicts that have caused the major humanitarian crisis. His assignments also included UN Area Coordination in northern Uganda and coordinating security of UN/NGO staff as the UN Security Coordinator in East Africa and the Middle East.
Narinder has frequently lectured at the University of Guelph and Centennial College in the areas of international development, refugee assistance and humanitarian response. Recently, he was part of the Dalhousie University team to initiate a World Bank project to support the Ministry of Education of Uganda, in transforming the Bukalasa Agricultural College “a centre of excellence.” He is also currently serving as the Vice President of Canadian Association of Former International Civil Servants (CAFICS) with headquarters in Montreal. Narinder holds a Master’s degree in Geology and is a seasoned expert in water and sanitation projects.
Alliances and Memberships
South Asia Partnership – Canada (SAP-C) – this consortium of Canadian NGOs is currently dormant and will reactivate when opportunity arises.