Welcome to Switchboard!

Switchboard is a one-stop resource hub for refugee service providers in the United States. 

Funded by the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR),  Switchboard offers a library of learning resources, an online evidence database, a range of self-paced e-learning courses, regular live learning opportunities, and on-demand technical assistance for ORR-funded organizations. Switchboard is implemented by the International Rescue Committee (IRC).

Meet the Team

Meg Gibbon is an experienced program manager whose career has focused on instructional design, training and technical assistance, grant management, and monitoring and evaluation. Before joining Switchboard, she worked at the IRC managing the Monitoring and Evaluation Technical Assistance (META) Project and serving as a Program Manager for Resource Acquisition. Meg is passionate about learning and strives to ensure Switchboard is a trusted, high-quality resource for refugee service providers. She holds an MA in French from Middlebury College, specializing in francophone societies, and a BA in Religion from Barnard College, specializing in Islam.  

Jason Crislip is an experienced educator, trainer, and program manager who has worked in the field of refugee resettlement since 2003. He comes to Switchboard from the Cultural Orientation Resource Exchange (CORE), where he directed a global CO technical assistance program for over three years. Prior to CORE, Jason worked abroad for 15 years at the Resettlement Support Center for East Asia, the Overseas Processing Entity in West Africa, and as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ghana. He holds a degree in Education from the University of Akron, Ohio.

Tigest Coleman is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over 15 years of experience working with refugees, immigrants, and other forcibly displaced populations in direct service, supervisory, and management positions. Prior to joining Switchboard, Tigest worked at Lutheran Community Services (Seattle, WA) in ORR’s Unaccompanied Refugee Minor Program, where she provided countless client-centered consultations, guidance, and recommended resources for clients, staff, and various community agencies. Her many years of on-the-job experience as a direct line worker have afforded her a well-rounded skillset including managing adverse situations, comprehensive service planning, strengths-based and trauma-informed case management, and collaborating with interdisciplinary care teams to deliver culturally and linguistically appropriate services. Tigest holds a Master of Social Work from University of Washington.

Leyla Dursunova began working with refugees in 2000 in Uzbekistan, where she coordinated a health training program for Afghan women under Mercy Corps’ operations. Her engagement in U.S. refugee resettlement started in 2004 in various capacities: providing direct services as a Reception and Placement and Matching Grant Case Manager, coordinating ethnic community building projects, supporting fundraising and development at a local resettlement agency, and providing training and technical assistance through project Strengthening Organizations Assisting Refugees (SOAR) at the IRC. Leyla was deeply involved in local resettlement efforts of her own ethnic community of Meskhetian/Ahiska Turks in 2004-2006, and later of Afghan evacuees in 2021-2022 at Nationalities Service Center, Philadelphia. Leyla holds an MSW in Social Administration and International Social Welfare from Columbia University through a fellowship from the Open Society Institute. She holds a BA in English and Italian Linguistics and Teaching and is a native Russian speaker. Leyla is an alumna of International House NY and is a licensed MSW in NY State.

Kimberly Mays is a digital technology enthusiast that has over 15 years of experience in marketing, training, design, and web development. Prior to joining Switchboard, she worked for data-driven marketing technology corporations as a business analyst, project manager, and developer. She is passionate about using technology as a means to help people improve their lives, help service providers reach those who need them, and to work towards bridging the digital divide for a more equitable future for all. Kimberly holds an MBA from the Zicklin School of Business (CUNY Baruch) and a BS in Computer Information Systems from Fordham University.

Liz Tompkins brings diverse knowledge and skillsets to Switchboard, combining public administration leadership and program development experience with clinical social work abilities. Most recently, Liz served as the National Capacity Director for Refugee and Immigrant Programs with Bethany Christian Services. Her work concentrated on strategic program development and nationwide implementation of referral and placement systems for Unaccompanied Children in ORR custody, Unaccompanied Refugee Minor programs, and Home Study and Post Release Services. Liz is an experienced facilitator and public speaker, having presented at numerous conferences on topics ranging from humanitarian concerns at the southern border to ethics in administration. Liz is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of Michigan and received both an MSW and MPA from Grand Valley State University. Liz is also a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV), having served in Peru from 2012 until 2016.

Farah El Hassan began her career in the nonprofit sector working on an economic development program in the Middle East region. In her role, Farah oversaw the implementation of skills-building activities to increase employment opportunities among low-income populations. Prior to joining Switchboard, Farah developed and expanded programs that served immigrant and refugee youth and women at a nonprofit in Houston, TX. These programs focused on overcoming language barriers, establishing social connections, and increasing food security. Farah holds an MA in International Affairs from the Lebanese American University and an MSc in Social Policy (Research) from the London School of Economics and Political Science. She speaks Arabic and English.

Elijah Davis is a business administrative professional with experience providing administrative support in the nonprofit and health care sectors. Over the years, he has developed strong skills in logistical planning, procurement, contracting vendors, compliance, and reporting. Elijah is passionate about using his skills at Switchboard to leverage resources for refugee service providers across the United States. Prior to joining Switchboard, Elijah served as an administrative assistant within the Johns Hopkins Medical System. He previously worked as an office manager at a nonprofit domestic violence and sexual assault center in Central Maryland. Elijah is currently studying Business Administration at the University of Maryland Global Campus.   

Megan Rafferty has worked in mental health settings providing culturally responsive, strengths-based, trauma-informed services to refugee and immigrant populations for over a decade. She has provided case management, individual therapy, and psychosocial group interventions to individuals experiencing a wide range of mental health concerns including depression, anxiety, trauma, substance use, and adjustment difficulties. She has also led program development, evaluation, and clinical supervision. Megan currently holds dual licensure in Colorado as a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Addiction Counselor (LAC). She received her master’s degree in International Disaster Psychology: Trauma and Global Mental Health from the University of Denver.

 

Raluca Albu is a former refugee (sponsored by the IRC in 1989) who was born in Romania and raised in the Bronx. She most recently worked as the interim deputy editor for Doctors Without Borders and has held editorial positions at Guernicamagazine, BOMB, and Columbia University. Prior to her work in communications, she was a history teacher in the New York City public school system and taught academic writing at NYU. Her own writing has been published in The Guardian, The Village Voice, Three Percent, and elsewhere. She lives in the Hudson Valley with her two sled-pulling Samoyeds and her wood-working partner. Raluca holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University, an MA in Teaching from Columbia University, and a BA in History from Bard College.

Sally Beiruti brings experience working on forced displacement and migration issues, as well as monitoring and evaluation. As a graduate research and teaching assistant in the Program on Forced Migration and Health at Columbia University, Sally worked on research projects related to health systems and displacement in various host countries. Before starting graduate school, she worked on the monitoring and evaluation of a robotics program for girls in public schools in Amman, Jordan. As an undergraduate student with the D-Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), she helped develop and conduct workshops for refugee women and unaccompanied refugee minors in Athens, Greece. Sally holds an MPH from the Population and Family Health Department at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health with a certificate in Public Health and Humanitarian Action, as well as a BS from the Mechanical Engineering Department at MIT. She is fluent in Arabic and English and is learning French. 

Selina Máté is a digital content manager with experience in refugee resettlement. Prior to joining Switchboard, she developed and managed a refugee youth mentorship program with World Relief in Durham, NC. In addition to her nonprofit background, she has experience in journalism, social media management, and WordPress development. Selina holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Huntington University.

 

Sonali Jagdhane White comes to Switchboard from U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI), where she served as a Program Officer. In that role, Sonali provided monitoring and evaluation, outreach, and partnership support to providers in the Trafficking Victim Assistance Program (TVAP) network that worked with foreign national survivors of trafficking. Sonali brings a varied background in anti-trafficking work: she has raised awareness at churches, volunteered on her college campus, volunteered at a survivor shelter, and worked at Polaris and the TVAP Program connecting clients to services. Sonali holds an MA in Human Rights from the University of Arizona and a BA in Russian Language and Culture from Arizona State University.

Sarah Diner comes to Switchboard from the direct service side of refugee resettlement. She has worked for the Iowa Bureau of Refugee Services and a local USCRI affiliate managing and providing services for the Matching Grant, Reception and Placement, and Afghan Humanitarian Parole programs. Her experience in the non-profit world started when she served in the Peace Corps as a Community Services Specialist in Morocco. She is passionate about helping others access resources and knowledge that can aid them in providing the best services possible to their newest neighbors. Sarah holds an MA in Public Anthropology from American University in Washington, D.C. and will be completing an MPH in Community and Behavioral Health from the University of Iowa.

Madina Masumi is a licensed K–12 school counselor with over a decade of experience serving students from marginalized populations in Fairfax County Public Schools in Northern Virginia. She previously worked as a case manager for public assistance programs. As the daughter of Afghan refugees, Madina has experienced firsthand the challenges of refugee integration. She holds a Master of Education in School Counseling from George Mason University. Madina speaks fluent Dari and is proficient in Spanish.

Maliha Mirza is a social worker who brings more than a decade of experience engaging with diverse populations in community health and mental health settings. Prior to joining Switchboard, she was a social worker at a hospital in Washington state, where she focused on refugee populations. Before that, she worked for 10 years as a therapist, clinical supervisor, and practicum instructor at Lutheran Community Services. Maliha speaks Dari, Farsi, Hindi, and Urdu, and she understands Pashto. She holds a Master of Social Work from the University of Washington.

Rob Callus is a lifelong educator with over seven years of experience working in instructional design, global health, and refugee resettlement. Prior to joining Switchboard, he was a program manager for World Relief in Durham, NC, where he supported school and community integration for refugee and immigrant families. Rob previously worked for Curamericas Global, where he designed and implemented maternal and neonatal child health training for community health workers in rural Kenya. He also taught English writing and served as a guidance counselor for two years at a high school in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, after graduating from the University of Notre Dame. Rob speaks Swahili and Spanish, and he is ESL-certified for both adults and youth. He is based in Durham, NC.

Emily Smith is an experienced copy editor with an interest in helping refugees, immigrants, and English language learners. Prior to joining Switchboard, she worked as a legal editor for the American Association for Justice and later as an academic copy editor for non-native English speakers. In addition to editing, Emily has volunteered extensively with nonprofit organizations that support refugees and immigrants. She brings four years of valuable experience volunteering for the Blacksburg Refugee Partnership, where she was the healthcare coordinator for a newly resettled Syrian family. She also has six years of experience teaching English to immigrants and refugees, first serving as an ESOL tutor in Virginia and then as an assistant ESOL instructor with JVS Boston. Emily is deeply committed to helping refugees thrive in their new communities. She holds a B.A. in anthropology from Brandeis University and a J.D. from Cornell Law School.

David Pax K. Buatshia brings over a decade of experience in instructional design, web and software development, training, and project management. Prior to joining Switchboard, he worked as an instructional designer and web developer in higher education in the United States. He also served as a Microsoft Student Ambassador in Africa, providing technology training in university and corporate settings. In addition, David Pax is a Global Shaper at the World Economic Forum, where he discusses development issues with heads of state. He is a recipient of the Open Society Foundations (OSF) highly competitive Civil Society Leadership Awards (CSLA), which he received for designing an economic development plan for Congolese entrepreneurs and building a family planning app. David Pax holds a Master in Instructional Design, Development and Evaluation from Syracuse University and a BSc in Mathematics and Computer Science from Université Pédagogique Nationale (DR Congo). He is fluent in French, English, and Lingala.

Julie Markovitz comes to Switchboard with 15 years of experience providing direct service to refugees and other newcomers at the IRC resettlement office in Dallas, TX. She started as the Office Coordinator, where she provided operations and finance support. She later became the Program Coordinator for the Refugee Cash Assistance (RCA) program, an ORR-funded early employment program that helps people meet their most basic needs. Julie also worked with individuals in the Dallas area to complete Affidavits of Relationship (AORs) and Iranian Lautenberg (HIAS) family reunification applications to allow overseas relatives to reunite with their family in the U.S. Julie holds an MA in International Relations from Salve Regina University and a BFA in Art History with a minor in Business Law from the University of North Texas. 

Rosalie Arndt is an educator with 14 years of experience working with migrant and multilingual learners. Prior to joining Switchboard, she served for five years as the IRC Resettlement, Asylum, and Integration (RAI) Youth Education Coordinator in New York City. There she led programming for NYC’s refugee and asylee K–12 youth and assumed capacity-building roles across the RAI network, including Youth Education Community of Practice Leader. Rosalie began her career in Denver, CO, where she taught 1st grade for seven years and later served as an Instructional Coach and Assistant Principal, winning the Best Agent for Change Award and the Best School Leadership Award. Her experience also includes advising on culturally responsive education with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and publishing with Education Week magazine. Rosalie holds an MA in Education Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Colorado, Denver, and a BA in Sociology from the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Jodie Boisvert is a social scientist with a decade of experience conducting research projects focusing on poverty, employment, youth development, hunger, and disaster preparedness and relief. Prior to joining Switchboard, she held numerous roles conducting research and evaluations for local and international nonprofit and government organizations, including United Way and American Red Cross. Jodie is currently pursuing a doctoral degree at Florida Atlantic University in Comparative Studies, an interdisciplinary program focusing on anthropology, sociology, and political science. She is investigating migrant employment outcomes and how to use employment as a strategy for integration. Jodie holds a master’s in Public Administration from Florida Gulf Coast University and a BA in Applied Anthropology from the University of South Florida. 

Kinda Hibrawi is an acclaimed artist and creative director with over a decade of experience in digital design, nonprofit development, and refugee advocacy. While working at Karam Foundation, she co-founded and led seven education and creative therapy programs that served over 4,000 Syrian refugee children and youth on the Syrian-Turkish border from 2013 to 2015. After returning to the U.S., Kinda launched Suppers with Love, a volunteer-led program that connected American families to recently arrived Syrian refugees in Southern California. She later co-founded Mint + Laurel, a social impact business that advocates for internally displaced artisans in Syria and sells their handmade products online in the U.S. Kinda has also exhibited her own paintings in galleries across the U.S. and internationally for the last 20 years. In 2016, she was invited to the Eid Dinner at the White House by President Obama in recognition of her creative work as a Muslim-American artist. Based in Southern California, Kinda was born in Saudi Arabia and grew up between Bahrain, Lebanon, and Syria. She received her BFA from California State University of Fullerton, and she speaks fluent Arabic and English.  

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