Board Members 2020-2021

Convener: Andrew Walsh

NGO Outreach Coordinator: Kelly Linton

Social Media Coordinator: 

Student Representative:

2017 Conference Coordinator: 

Former Board Members:

Rebecca Mantel, Convener 2016-2017

Rebecca Mantel conducted her doctoral research in Port-au-Prince, Haiti and Caracas, Venezuela on the development of emergency infrastructure in the post-crisis context.  Under the support of a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program, she focusing on emerging micro-NGOs and the Bolivarian-influenced Cuban medical brigade, examining the competitive tensions and connections of a humanitarian system that is scattered, ill-defined, and self-perpetuating. She completed her Ph.D. at Rice University in December 2015 and has since been working in international development in Washington, D.C. Contact her at

Amanda J. Reinke‘s research examines the ways in which nonprofits and NGOs become vehicles for state power in marginalized communities. Amanda’s dissertation research investigated the gray juridical space where informal and formal conflict resolution meet and conflict over the meaning of “justice” in rapidly transforming spaces of the San Francisco Bay Area. Previous research analyzed NGO and nonprofit responses to economic forms of violence (e.g. land conflict) as gendered violence in post-conflict northern Uganda. Trained in anthropology and the interdisciplinary Disasters, Displacement, and Human Rights Program, Amanda is receiving her Ph.D. in May 2016 from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Contact her at

Sara Thiam’s work focuses on global children’s rights promotion, NGOs and transnational aid, the intersection between rights-based and relief-based interventions, cross-cultural conceptions of childhood, and children’s rights in West Africa. Her 2015 dissertation, Forced Begging, Aid and Children’s Rights in Senegal:  Stories of Suffering and Politics of Compassion in the Promotion of Rights for the “Taalibe” Qur’anic School Students of Senegal and Mali, examines how religion, politics, and NGO aid-seeking interact in campaigns targeting child trafficking in the region. Sara holds a PhD in Anthropology from McGill University, an MA in Medical Anthropology from McGill, and she is currently finishing up an MPH degree at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is lecturing in the Social Sciences Department of Michigan Technological University, and is board chair of Right Start UP, a small non-profit in northern Michigan, where she is directing an intergenerational digital history project.

Marnie Thomson‘s research focuses on refugee experiences of violence and dislocation and the politics of humanitarian intervention in both Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Funded by the Social Science Research Council and the Wenner-Gren Foundation, she conducted fieldwork in Tanzania, the DRC, and UN Refugee Agency hubs in Nairobi, Kenya, and Geneva, Switzerland. She earned her PhD from the University of Colorado in December 2016, and she is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Washington and Lee University. Contact her at

Ally Krupar is currently an ABD Ph.D. Candidate in Adult Education and Comparative and International Education at Pennsylvania State University where she works as a Research Assistant at the Goodling Institute for Research in Family Literacy and the Institute for the Study of Adult Literacy. She is also Adjunct Faculty at American University in the IR Online Masters program at the School of International Service and the Graduate Certificate in Project Monitoring and Evaluation in the School of Professional and Extended Studies. She serves as a Visiting Researcher for RET, an NGO working in education in Dadaab, Kenya, the site of her dissertation research investigating women’s empowerment in adult education programs for refugees from learners’ and field workers’ perspectives.

Laura S. Jung is an activist-scholar and Ph.D. candidate in anthropology at American University. Her dissertation asks what the effects of short-term medical missions are on health outcomes in rural Honduran communities and what the broader social effects of these projects are. Her interests come from her years of experience as a volunteer translator and brigade leader for a short-term medical mission organization that works in Honduras. Her interests are diverse and include: examinations of humanitarian logics, political ecology, topics in critical medical anthropology, and of course, race, class and gender, to name but a few.

Aviva Sinervo, Convener 2015-2016

Aviva Sinervo’s research and teaching focus on childhood, poverty, international aid and NGOs, volunteer tourism, urban economies, and affect, with a regional interest in Peru, the Andes, and Latin America. She has published in The Journal of Latin American and Caribbean AnthropologyChildhoods TodayChildhoodTourist Studies, and is a contributing author for Oxford Bibliographies in Childhood Studies. She is currently a Visiting Lecturer in the Department of Anthropology at San Francisco State University. Contact her at

Omri Grinberg, Webmaster 2016

Omri Grinberg is a Vanier doctoral candidate in the Department of Anthropology and the Centre for Jewish Studies at the University of Toronto. He finished his Master’s degree (summa cum laude) in the Cultural Studies program at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, where he wrote his thesis about Israeli representations of Palestinian child labour. His current ethnographic research is titled “Archives of Hope and Failure: The Politics of Palestinians’ Testimonies in Israeli Human Rights NGOs”. He previously worked for a prominent Israeli NGO, and was a freelance journalist.