Our Team

Partners

Timothy NourseTimothy seeks to accelerate economic development and empower local communities through his work at Making Cents. He has over 25 years of experience in coalition building, program management, local capacity development, and technical service delivery. Tim is an expert in financial inclusion, having managed both nation-wide financial sector development projects as well as programs focused on strengthening financial institutions. Most recently, he has worked on developing digital financial services across the Middle East. At Making Cents, Tim serves as President, building partnerships, managing overall operations, advancing the company-wide strategic plan, and supporting the company’s financial services portfolio. In his free time, Tim promotes the local food movement through support to his family’s 300 year-old farm.
Tijana DabicTijana has 18 years of international development experience focused on capturing and pursuing new business. She has managed business development and proposal teams that have generated more than $1.7 billion in new funding from US Government agencies, foundations, corporations, and multilateral and bilateral donors. At Making Cents, she designs and executes the company’s business development strategy and cultivates relationships with clients and partners. When she is not working, Tijana enjoys watching unhealthy amounts of Serbian TV, frets over human extinction at the hands of AI-powered robots, and dreams that one day (before the said extinction) she will be able to afford a Tesla.
Susan MasseSusan brings more than 20 years of experience managing international development projects, with expertise in project implementation, financial management, and contract compliance. She has managed projects funded by USAID, other bilateral donors, and foundations and served as key personnel on projects valued at greater than $350 million cumulatively. Prior to joining Making Cents, Susan worked on USAID human capital development initiatives at the Public Health Institute and the Centre for Development and Population Activities. At Making Cents, Susan leads the Project Delivery Unit, responsible for the sound, effective, and client-focused implementation of the company’s portfolio of projects. In her not-so-free time, Susan enjoys hiking with her energetic family, cooking off script, and always cheering for the Red Sox, especially when they play the Yankees.
Dr. Christy OlenikChristy is a youth programming and monitoring and evaluation expert with more than 25 years of experience working on youth projects in the US and internationally. Over the course of her career, she has collaborated with international organizations, local NGOs, and bilateral and multilateral donors to build the field of positive youth development. At Making Cents, she oversees the company’s technical services across all practice areas: economic opportunities; women’s empowerment; youth development; and monitoring, evaluation, research, and learning. After working on her own meditation practice for more than 20 years, Christy recently became a certified meditation instructor.
Dr. Hillary ProctorHillary brings more than 15 years of experience developing rural livelihoods and building the capacity of local partner organizations. She has worked on value chain development, youth savings and lending, and eco-tourism projects throughout West Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, including many conflict and post-conflict environments. During her near-decade overseas, she served as a US Peace Corps Volunteer in Armenia. At Making Cents, Hillary leads the economic opportunity practice, supporting market systems development, inclusive livelihoods, and rural development projects through assessments, program design, curriculum development, and capacity building. Hillary lives on a cattle ranch in Wyoming where she ‘practices what she preaches’ by living and working agri-business and rural livelihoods development.

Partners

Timothy Nourse 

President and CEO

Timothy seeks to accelerate economic development and empower local communities through his work at Making Cents. He has over 25 years of experience in coalition building, program management, local capacity development, and technical service delivery. Tim is an expert in financial inclusion, having managed both nation-wide financial sector development projects as well as programs focused on strengthening financial institutions. Most recently, he has worked on developing digital financial services across the Middle East. At Making Cents, Tim serves as President, building partnerships, managing overall operations, advancing the company-wide strategic plan, and supporting the company’s financial services portfolio. In his free time, Tim promotes the local food movement through support to his family’s 300 year-old farm.

Tijana Dabic 

Senior Vice President, Business Development and Strategic Partnerships

Tijana has 18 years of international development experience focused on capturing and pursuing new business. She has managed business development and proposal teams that have generated more than $1.7 billion in new funding from US Government agencies, foundations, corporations, and multilateral and bilateral donors. At Making Cents, she designs and executes the company’s business development strategy and cultivates relationships with clients and partners. When she is not working, Tijana enjoys watching unhealthy amounts of Serbian TV, frets over human extinction at the hands of AI-powered robots, and dreams that one day (before the said extinction) she will be able to afford a Tesla.

Susan Masse 

Chief Operating Officer

Susan brings more than 20 years of experience managing international development projects, with expertise in project implementation, financial management, and contract compliance. She has managed projects funded by USAID, other bilateral donors, and foundations and served as key personnel on projects valued at greater than $350 million cumulatively. Prior to joining Making Cents, Susan worked on USAID human capital development initiatives at the Public Health Institute and the Centre for Development and Population Activities. At Making Cents, Susan leads project delivery, communications, and operations functional areas, and oversees the company’s economic opportunities, gender equity and social inclusion, and democracy, human rights, and governance practice areas. In her not-so-free time, Susan enjoys hiking with her energetic family, cooking off script, and always cheering for the Red Sox, especially when they play the Yankees.

Dr. Christy Olenik 

Project Director, IDAMS

Christy is a youth programming and monitoring and evaluation expert with more than 25 years of experience working on youth projects in the US and internationally. Over the course of her career, she has collaborated with international organizations, local NGOs, and bilateral and multilateral donors to build the field of positive youth development. At Making Cents, she oversees the company’s youth development and monitoring, evaluation, research, and learning practice areas. After working on her own meditation practice for more than 20 years, Christy recently became a certified meditation instructor.

Hillary Proctor 

Senior Director, Economic Opportunities

Hillary brings more than 15 years of experience developing rural livelihoods and building the capacity of local partner organizations. She has worked on value chain development, youth savings and lending, and eco-tourism projects throughout West Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, including many conflict and post-conflict environments. During her near-decade overseas, she served as a US Peace Corps Volunteer in Armenia. At Making Cents, Hillary leads the economic opportunity practice, supporting market systems development, inclusive livelihoods, and rural development projects through assessments, program design, curriculum development, and capacity building. Hillary lives on a cattle ranch in Wyoming where she ‘practices what she preaches’ by living and working agri-business and rural livelihoods development.

US Office Staff

A photo of Fizzah Abbasi

Fizzah Abbasi 

Senior Associate, Project Delivery

Fizzah is an international development professional with a technical focus in project management. She previously worked in grants management, serving as a Program Officer on over 45+ NIH-funded research grants. At Making Cents, Fizzah serves as the Senior Associate on the YP2LE portfolio, working on the online YouthPower and YouthLead platforms and collaborating with sponsors on the project. In her free time, she works to promote education for girls in Pakistan, and her hobbies include reading, traveling, and shopping.

A photo of Vicky Aridi

Vicky Aridi

Manager, YEO 2030 Initiative

Vicky, a lawyer by training, is an experienced program manager in the youth economic opportunities space. Having worked across 80 countries, she has led a diverse range of programs and research on youth economic opportunities, green jobs, financial inclusion, food security and sustainable development for organizations, such as the Agency for Disability and Development in Africa, Fairtrade Africa, Microsoft, UN Environmental Programme, UN Joint SDG Fund, and UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network. She also served on UNICEF’s Generation Unlimited global sounding board as an expert in the youth economic opportunities space. At Making Cents International, she will be responsible for managing the YEO 2030 initiative, a global movement on youth economic opportunities focusing on elevating youth leadership, knowledge exchange between youth and multi stakeholders, and acceleration of the achievement of SDG 8. In her free time, Vicky enjoys travelling the globe and acting.

A Photo Reed Atkinson

Reed Atkinson

Associate, Project Delivery

Reed is a recent graduate of the University of Virginia, where he found a passion for international development issues and wrote his senior thesis on the ethics of NGOs in Haiti. Prior to Making Cents, Reed interned with education non-profit Enseña Peru, and assisted on an academic research project on global leaders’ responses to COVID-19. On the Project Delivery team, Reed supports staff on activities in the LACLEARN portfolio. Outside of work, Reed enjoys hiking, canoeing, exploring new music, and playing Ultimate Frisbee.

A photo of Sharika Bhattacharya

Dr. Sharika Bhattacharya

Advisor, Research, Evaluation, and Learning 

Sharika has over a decade of experience engaging in research and evaluation activities for U.S.-based and international projects for a variety of federal and other clients. Her experience and interests span multiple sectors, including youth development, education and economic mobility, workforce development, financial empowerment, and building evaluation capacity. At Making Cents, Sharika serves as Research, Evaluation, and Learning Technical Advisor, overseeing the Monitoring, Evaluation, Research, and Learning practice area and providing leadership on the design and implementation of these activities. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family, seeking out warm weather, and finding new ways to organize her mental and physical space.

A photo of Anne Bitga

Anne Bitga

Director, Project Delivery and Operations

Anne brings more than a decade of experience in international development, serving in a variety of roles focused on program design, research and assessments, curriculum development and training, capacity building, and project management. She has designed customized project strategies and technical assistance approaches for youth livelihoods, financial inclusion, agriculture, and workforce development projects, working in collaboration with local partners in Africa, the Middle East, and Central Asia. At Making Cents, Anne guides effective and compliant project execution, provides standards for quality assurance for all project-level deliverables, and oversees implementation and further refinement of our project management systems. When she’s not working, Anne enjoys spending time with her infant son, going on hikes with her dog, and road-tripping to see family and friends.

Sarahna Brostuen

Senior Associate, Project Delivery

Sarahna is an international development practitioner with over three years of experience supporting implementation of projects. She previously worked as the Middle East and North Africa Program Associate at Internews, supporting civil society organizations and independent media outlets to strengthen transparency and accountability. She has also worked for the United Nations General Assembly, Mercy Corps, and the House Democracy Partnership. At Making Cents, Sarahna supports the Project Delivery Team with project management and procurement on multiple projects in our portfolio. In her free time, Sarahna enjoys visiting art museums, trying new restaurants, and hiking with her husband.

A photo of Eva Cantrell

Eva Cantrell

Senior Director, Communications

Eva is an accomplished communications professional with over 15 years of experience developing and implementing print, online, and in-person communications strategies and materials for U.S. and international audiences. She was responsible for brand management and digital media for multi-million-dollar global development organizations, such as Pathfinder International, Digital Green, Plan International USA, and the Centre for Development and Population Activities (CEDPA). As Director of Communications at Making Cents, Eva drives and executes the company’s internal and external communications priorities and strategies.

Ray Crawford

Senior Manager, HR and Operations

Ray is an accomplished Human Resources (HR) professional with over eight years of business management, talent development, and employee engagement experience. He brings knowledge from a variety of industries including youth education, IT, non-profit, real estate, and health and wellness. At Making Cents, Ray supports employee relations and upholds the organization’s standards by managing policies, enhancing company culture, and maintaining compliance in the HR and Operations departments. In his spare time, he enjoys family game nights, social events, and traveling to new destinations.

A Photo of Jennifer Davis

Jennifer Davis

Advisor, Gender-Based Violence

Jennifer is a public health practitioner specializing in gender equality and violence against women and girls. Her recent work has focused on design, implementation, and capacity strengthening of gender-based violence (GBV) prevention and response programming in complex emergency settings, including South Sudan, Syria, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan. At Making Cents, Jennifer supports USAID’s CARE-GBV activity and works across the Business Development, Project Delivery, and Technical Service units to strengthen Making Cents’ women’s empowerment and GBV portfolios. Jennifer is based in the Pacific Northwest, where she enjoys spending time in nature and exploring ways to slow down.

A photo of Shelby Eckhardt

Shelby Eckhardt

Senior Associate, Project Delivery

Shelby is a trained advocate for survivors of sexual assault and is passionate about ending all forms of violence against women and girls. Previously, she worked as a coder for the WomanStats Project and co-founded the Women, Peace, and Security Club. At Making Cents, Shelby supports the Project Delivery Team with project management and procurement on multiple projects in our portfolio, including our USAID-funded projects in Jamaica and Tajikistan, as well as on CARE-GBV. In her free time, Shelby enjoys being in nature and volunteering at a local wildlife rehabilitation center.

A photo of Stephanie Edmonds

Stephanie Edmonds

Associate, Operations

Stephanie leveraged her passion for working with people into a career in operations. Previously, Stephanie garnered over six years of experience as an operations contractor at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. In her role at Making Cents, she is responsible for supporting company operations, including IT, facilities management, reconciliations, and document management. In Stephanie’s free time she enjoys baking, Tiktoking, and analyzing social media trends and data.

A photo of Idrees Haider

Idrees Haider

Manager, Grants

Idrees is an international development professional with over a decade of experience specializing in economic growth, access to finance, and humanitarian assistance interventions. Prior to joining Making Cents, he worked with USAID as a Project Management Specialist, where he designed, procured, and administered awards in the areas of promoting international trade, mobilizing private capital, firm-level competitiveness, and workforce development. At Making Cents, Idrees serves as the Grants Manager, overseeing the grants portfolio focused on democracy, human rights, and governance in Latin America and gender-based violence globally. In his free time, Idrees enjoys playing cricket and spending time with his family.

Rosa Hassan De Ferrari

Manager, Project Delivery

Rosa is an international development researcher and practitioner dedicated to women’s health, gender equality, and human rights, with eight years of global experience in Latin America, Asia, and the United States. Her career has focused on creating and advocating for gender-informed policies through data-driven research and analysis, from working with traditional birth attendants to deliver intimate partner violence prevention information to collaborating with refugees to improve menstrual health within their communities. At Making Cents, Rosa works on multiple projects in the Project Delivery Unit, including LACLEARN and the Serbia SME Impact Evaluation. Outside of work, Rosa can usually be found traveling, dabbling in special effects makeup, and advocating for migrant rights. 

A Photo of Cherece Lindsay

Cherece Lindsay

Associate, Finance 

Cherece brings more than a decade of on-the-job experience in finance and development from Johns Hopkins University. While there, she played a key role in multiple successful financial campaigns that funded critical research and educational expansion. At Making Cents, she contributes to finance and operations activities through accounts payable and receivable, daily cashflow, and payroll processing. In her free time, Cherece enjoys Marvel movies and attending comic conventions.

A photo of Lauren Littles

Lauren Littles

Specialist, Economic Opportunities

Lauren is an international development professional with over three years of experience designing and leading capacity building, entrepreneurship, and community health projects. Before joining Making Cents, she worked as Development Coordinator through AmeriCorps in Seattle and as a Health Outreach Specialist through the Peace Corps in Mozambique. As a Specialist with the Economic Opportunities team, Lauren contributes technical assistance to projects within Making Cents’ Economic Opportunities practice area. In addition to International Development, she is passionate about scuba diving, traveling, live music, and exploring D.C.

A photo of Ashley Nelson

Ashley Nelson

Director, Project Delivery

Ashley has over a decade of experience in international democracy, governance, human rights, education, and advocacy programming in Africa and Asia. Throughout her career, based both in the United States and abroad, Ashley focused on building the capacity of youth, women, and civil society. Her experience spans quantitative and qualitative research related to global women’s rights and host country perceptions and attitudes towards refugees to supporting a group of female Senegalese law enforcement officers to plan and execute the first women in law enforcement conference in the Sahel. At Making Cents, Ashley utilizes her project management experience to lead democracy, governance, and human rights projects under the Project Delivery portfolio. When not working, Ashley enjoys traveling, reading, listening to podcasts, practicing yoga, spending time with friends and family, and challenging the patriarchy.

A Photo of Chelsea Pallatino

Dr. Chelsea Pallatino

Senior Specialist, Research, Evaluation, and Learning

Chelsea brings more than a decade of research and project management experience in the U.S. and abroad related to gender and development. Her primary areas of expertise include gender equity, women’s empowerment, reproductive health, and gender-based violence. Prior to joining Making Cents, Chelsea worked with the United Nations Development Programme on their Gender Equality in Public Administration (GEPA) initiative and served as a Commissioner on the City of Pittsburgh’s Gender Equity Commission under the Office of the Mayor. At Making Cents, she is responsible for guiding qualitative and quantitative research activities and program design, implementation, analysis, evaluation, and dissemination that integrates strengths-based approaches. In her free time, Chelsea enjoys running and hiking.

A Photo of Kea Profitt

Kea Profitt

Director, Finance

Kea is an experienced finance manager with a long record overseeing financial and accounting operations for small businesses working with the U.S. Government. She is skilled in all aspects of financial management, ensuring accurate tracking, monitoring, and reporting of all financial data. Her experience includes reviewing systems, policies, and tools to maintain best practices in financial management and accounting and to make recommendations on needed improvements. In her role at Making Cents, Kea ensures the efficient operations of organizational systems, procedures, and policies and manages accounting practices and procedures. Kea loves spending time with her family, listening to music, and traveling.

A photo of Lauren Ray

Lauren Ray

Manager, Project Delivery

Lauren is a justice-driven problem solver and project management professional with experience leading international development projects, managing large-scale events, identifying and implementing process improvement, and designing equity and inclusion solutions. Most recently, she worked to unlock economic mobility and gainful employment for reskilled workers entering the tech industry. Prior to this, Lauren spearheaded and mobilized the JVA Social Justice Task Force to create and distribute racial justice curricula, recommend organizational policies to volleyball clubs nationwide, and support Black and Brown junior athletes across the country. In her free time, Lauren is an avid potter and can be found playing and coaching volleyball and cheering on the Milwaukee Bucks.

Nick Reed-Krase

Senior Manager, Project Delivery

Nick has over a decade of experience in international development, where he has provided programmatic, operational, and strategic support for the design, implementation, and assessment of agriculture, natural resource management, and public health projects and programs in Madagascar, South Africa, and Malawi. He is passionate about holistic and sustainable interventions that are locally driven, and he enjoys opportunities to develop cross-sector partnerships, share learning, and promote youth leadership and engagement. As Senior Manager, Project Delivery supporting the YouthPower2: Learning and Evaluation activity, Nick provides backstopping on a variety of project-related tasks. In his free time, he likes to go running, scour YouTube in search of the next great musical sensation, and have spirited debates with the television while watching sports.

Nhelly Saleh-Ramirez

Director, Democracy, Rights, and Governance

Nhelly brings 20 years of experience in designing and managing DRG programs, contract and grant compliance, crisis management, and policy analysis.  Nhelly has worked on both sides of the aisle, more recently with a wide range of NGOs and for-profit organizations implementing USAID-funded programs focused on local governance, civil society strengthening, inclusive social accountability, and election administration. She also held several positions with USAID both in the field and headquarters, where she was responsible for designing stabilization and transition activities and led planning and coordination processes with State Department offices to ensure all activities directly supported US foreign policy objectives. As the Director for Democracy, Rights, and Governance, she provides strategic direction for, and oversight of, Making Cents’ development and implementation of DRG approaches and programming.  In her free time, Nhelly enjoys spending time in the outdoors with her family and mini-aussie.

A photo of Stephanie Schmidt

Stephanie Schmidt

Advisor, Learning and Innovation

Stephanie has more than a decade of experience serving as a technical and management expert for USAID, the Department of State, and other clients. She has implemented organizational learning, monitoring, evaluation, facilitation, knowledge management, and capacity development support across sectors, as well as provided internal quality assurance for service delivery and management. At Making Cents, Stephanie serves as the Learning and Innovation Advisor with the Monitoring, Evaluation, Research, and Learning Team, helping clients and project teams to learn from and act to improve their programming based on evidence. In her free time, Stephanie enjoys walking her dog and reading fiction.

Gloria Schultz

Manager, Digital Communications

Gloria is an award-winning filmmaker and experienced communication professional who has served as a content producer for international, governmental, and non-government agencies. She has an extensive portfolio ranging from videos and graphic design, to social media and website content management. In 2018, she collaborated with Israeli and Palestinian farmers to develop solutions towards environmental peacebuilding in the West Bank. At Making Cents, Gloria oversees corporate and project-related digital communication, including social media, website content, and online campaigns. Outside of work, Gloria is a RYT200 certified yoga instructor who enjoys spending time in nature and living a low-waste lifestyle.

A photo of Jelena Simmons

Jelena B. Simmons

Writer/Editor

Jelena has more than 20 years of experience as a linguist working in the context of international development. Her areas of expertise include democracy, human rights, and governance; gender equality and social inclusion; education; youth engagement; agriculture and food security; and public health. She speaks six languages and has lived in 10 countries (so far). At Making Cents, Jelena serves as writer and editor, helping produce high-quality and engaging written materials. When she is not writing and editing, she enjoys cooking, baking, listening to music, and exploring and collecting unusual art and artefacts.

A Photo of Bhavana Suvarna

Bhavana Suvarna

Associate, Business Development

Bhavana recently interned for the Québec Delegation in Chicago, where she used her fluency in French to liaise with partner organizations and developed articles on the office’s cultural, environmental, and business priorities. Bhavana studied in Dakar, Senegal, and interned with the Health Development Initiative in Kigali, Rwanda. She additionally spent a year in France as an English language assistant. Bhavana supports the implementation of Making Cents’ business development strategy, including business intelligence gathering, capture efforts, and proposal development. In her free time, Bhavana teaches French classes and runs an online book club.

A photo of Nancy Taggart

Nancy Taggart

Vice President

Nancy has twenty years of experience designing and managing international education, youth workforce, and gender programs around the world. She has served as a thought leader on youth, women’s education and training, and workforce development throughout her career. Prior to Making Cents, Nancy was a Senior Youth and Workforce Advisor in the Education Office at USAID, where she provided technical guidance on youth and employment to USAID missions. In addition to working at USAID, she served in a variety of technical and management roles for several NGOs primarily working in Africa and the Middle East.  At Making Cents she provides technical direction to Making Cents’ youth programming and YEO 2030.  Nancy lives in Nyack, New York and in her free time she loves exploring NYC and the Hudson Valley, cooking with her teenage daughter, and learning to play tennis. 

A Photo of Katelynn Warmbold

Katelynn Warmbold

Senior Associate, Project Delivery

Katelynn, a recent graduate of American University, is passionate about Indigenous Peoples’ rights and utilizing agriculture as a method of empowerment. On the Project Delivery team, Katelynn supports staff on youth-focused projects. In her free time, she sews, coaches a local speech team, and tends to her plants. 

A Photo of Emily Whitfield Stupak

Emily Whitfield Stupak

Senior Manager, Business Development

Emily is a business development professional with seven years of experience in international development. Prior to Making Cents, Emily has worked in various roles in the industry, serving as strategic communications specialist, project start-up specialist, and business development manager for both for-profit and non-profit international development organizations. At Making Cents, Emily coordinates proposal development efforts for funding opportunities with USAID and other donors. In her spare time, Emily enjoys mountain biking and hiking.

A Photo of Lindsey Woolf

Lindsey Woolf

Project Director, YouthPower2: Learning and Evaluation

Lindsey is an international development project management professional and youth organizing specialist with over eleven years of experience leading and managing youth-focused projects and initiatives. Prior to Making Cents, Lindsey led and facilitated multiple youth-led organizations, movements, and campaigns and developed youth leadership programming and trainings. At Making Cents, Lindsey serves as Project Director for the YouthPower2: Learning and Evaluation project, overseeing operational activities under core tasks and all buy-in activities.

A Photo of Natasha Zena

Natasha Zena

Senior Manager, Communications 

Natasha is an emerging leader in digital media, recognized by The Poynter Institute and the National Association of Black Journalists for her contributions in this space. She is the founding partner of Lioness, the first online news company for female entrepreneurs, which was acquired by Innovation Women in 2020. At Making Cents, Natasha leads external communications, digital content creation, and hosts The PYD Lab, a USAID-powered podcast delivered through the YouthPower2: Learning and Evaluation project. When she is not talking about startups and advocating for female founders, Natasha enjoys writing short fiction.

Atlas Corps Fellows

A photo of Zunaria Ali

Zunaira Ali

Youth Engagement Fellow

Zunaira is a professional digital media marketing and content expert with five years of experience working in the development and public sector in Pakistan on campaigns ranging from education to women’s empowerment to youth development. Additionally, she trained women around Pakistan in social media for business, marketing, and content creation. At Making Cents, she serves as a Youth Engagement Fellow through the Atlas Corps. When she is not working, she enjoys travelling and seeking opportunities to experience new adventures.