Founders and Board of Directors:
Sarah Hillware, Founder and Board Chair
Sarah is a longtime champion of women's and girls' empowerment, as she believes it is central to poverty eradication, community empowerment and economic growth.
She recognized a growing need for health education in the school system, and began researching the topic in-depth while studying at The George Washington University. Upon receiving a small grant, she piloted health education workshops in Washington, DC, and also performed secondary research in other low-income communities throughout the US, as well as Kenya and India. What she found was a missed opportunity to empower adolescent girls during a critical window of time, and it inspired her to formalize her operations and establish Girls Health Ed. Sarah strongly believes in the power of education and the power of women. Through her global studies of public health, and her personal and professional experiences, she has learned that the empowered girl is unstoppable.
Pavita Singh, M.PH, Acting Executive Director
Pavita Singh is the Acting Executive Director of Girls Health Ed. She is a graduate of Yale University, where she received her Master of Public Health in Social & Behavioral Sciences. Her graduate thesis explored the relationship between digital intimate partner violence and mental health outcomes. She also has a Bachelor of Arts in Gender & Sexuality Studies, Linguistics, and Child & Adolescent Mental Health from New York University, where she completed her thesis on the mental health treatment of South Asian immigrant women in the United States. Prior to taking over as Girls Health Ed's Acting Executive Director, Pavita served for six years as the organization's Director of Programs & Outreach, during which time she created and tailored Girls Health Ed’s curriculum, trained over 100 Teaching Fellows, built partnerships with 50 schools and community centers across all program locations, and taught workshops in the United States and Kenya. Some of her accomplishments as Acting Executive Director have included spearheading fundraising campaigns and programmatic partnerships with other organizations and organizing and moderating a roundtable discussion that Girls Health Ed co-hosted with the United Nations Population Fund on the importance of gender-transformative comprehensive sexuality education during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. Pavita is a long-time advocate for youth empowerment, particularly the empowerment of girls and young women, and for holistic health and wellness and has spoken at the White House about youth leadership development programs combating school bullying.
Dr. Angela Jones, MD, FACOG
Dr. Angela of AskDrAngela.com is equal parts best girlfriend and bold professional, supporting women’s health with innovative approaches to care and heavy doses of humor. Dr. Angela has done more than launch a successful practice, she has defined herself as a voice for a new generation of womanhood, established her Ask Dr. Angela brand committed to authenticity, and built a community rooted in trust, candor, and compassion. She is a wife, a mother, a Midwesterner, and an award-winning OB/GYN.
Jeff S. Puretz, J.D., Secretary and Legal Council
Jeff Puretz is active in supporting several charitable organizations. He joined the Board of Directors for Girls Health Ed in 2019. After previously serving as a legal adviser to the organization, Jeff was moved by GHE’s mission and its people. Jeff also serves as the Chair of the Board of Visitors of Catholic University Law School, and the Chair Elect to the Charles E Smith Life Communities, which includes the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington. Until his retirement at the end of 2018, Jeff practiced law with the global firm of Dechert LLP for 33 years where his practice involved securities representation of mutual funds, mutual fund boards, investment advisers, and insurance companies. Jeff was included in The Best Lawyers in America, was widely quoted in the financial press, and his work has been cited by the SEC and the courts.
Gaby Grebski, LICSW
Gaby Grebski is a licensed social worker who has been working with students as a counselor, health & sexuality educator, and coach since 2003 at both the high school and collegiate levels. She has spent much of her career on the ground counseling, teaching, and mentoring youth and has spent summers working for organizations like the Girls Leadership Institute and LearnServe International. She has worked abroad in Guatemala, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Zambia to help bring awareness to the many issues facing young girls including gender inequality, access to education, and HIV prevention. Gaby is also on the Board of Directors for the Girls Gotta Run Foundation, working with adolescent female runners in Ethiopia. Originally from New York, Gaby earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at Yale University and her Master of Science in Social Work at Columbia University. She is passionate about empowering, advocating for, and tapping into the potential of girls and young women worldwide.
Katherine Tan, M.B.A., Vice Chair
Katherine is a Program Officer in the Development Policy and Finance group at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, where she manages a portfolio of grants related to development finance policy and is building an internal advisory practice to help program teams mobilize external co-financing to scale strategic priorities. Prior to the Gates Foundation, she was a Senior Program Officer in the Finance Investment and Trade group at the Millennium Challenge Corporation. At MCC, she led the development of a $12.5 million program to fund climate-resilient agricultural investments as part of MCC's $437 million compact with the Government of Niger, the largest bi-lateral donor investment in Niger. She also helped secure and manage partnerships with the World Bank, African Development Bank, US African Development Foundation, and Coca-Cola Africa Foundation.
She began her career in the leadership development program at Bridgewater Associates, the world's largest hedge fund with $160B AUM, where she served as chief-of-staff to Bridgewater’s President and Co-CEO, managing stakeholder relations and implementing priorities across his portfolio. Following Bridgewater, she was selected as one of fifteen Bankers without Borders Fellows from 650 applicants at Grameen Foundation, an international NGO. Katherine has worked in various international contexts, including Niger, Benin, Zambia, the Philippines, India, China, and Argentina.
Katherine has an MBA with honors from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where she graduated in the top 20% of her MBA for Executives Class. She graduated cum laude with honors from Harvard College with a B.A. in Economics. She consulted for BizCorps, a start-up founded by Robert Mosbacher Jr., former CEO of the US Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and served on a taskforce to redesign impact measurement at StartingBloc, a social enterprise. She served as a Young Professionals in Foreign Policy Fellow in Sustainable Development, with publications appearing in the Huffington Post, Devex, and other outlets. She is an honorable mention finalist for the Society for International Development’s Andrew E. Rice Award for Outstanding Young Professional in International Development, a Shafik Gabr Fellow for dialogue with Egypt, a StartingBloc Fellow, a member of the Nexus Global Youth network, a SandBox member, and a Coca-Cola Scholar. She has served as Board Secretary on the Executive Board of Harvard Global Women’s Empowerment, an alumni organization. She is passionate about women and girls’ issues and is a longtime volunteer on issues related to sexual and relationship violence and girls’ education.
Allana currently serves as the Digital Strategy Coordinator at USAID, supporting the Agency's digital transformation. She brings more than a decade of experience in government, non profit, and private sectors specializing in the areas of international development, technology, communications, and training. Her past experience includes serving as the Director for the Principles for Digital Development at the United Nations Foundation and working on technology-based solutions to the Ebola response and recovery efforts in West Africa at USAID. Allana holds a Master of Business Administration and a Master of Public Policy, with specializations in management and international development from the University of Maryland. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from California State University, Fresno.
Kathryn Kelly, M.D.
Dr. Kathryn Kelly is a Board Certified Internal Medicine Physician Silver Spring, MD. Dr. Kelly is the President/Owner of Kelly Collaborative Medicine focusing on Primary Care. Dr. Kelly has a passion for the underserved and community service through healthcare and works to provide Comprehensive, Compassionate Care to her patients. Dr. Kelly received a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology in 2001 from Howard University and worked towards her Masters in Education at City College of New York and Brooklyn College while teaching High School science in the Bronx, New York from 2001-2003. Dr. Kelly received her Medical Degree from Howard University in 2007 and completed her Residency and Chief Residency in Internal Medicine at the Washington Hospital Center in Washington, DC. Dr. Kelly is a board Member for Tau Beta Sigma National Honorary Band Sorority, Incorporated where she previously served as the Organization’s National President from 2015-2017. Dr. Kelly also serves on the Board of Trustees for the Howard University Medical Alumni Association. Dr. Kelly is married to Jackie Kelly, Jr., a lobbyist for the American Trucking Association. She also has two daughters, Ajzha and Reagan,and a son, Jackson. The Kelly Family resides in Silver Spring, Maryland.
Natasha Yousaf McKay, M.D.
Natasha is a physician who is passionate about health education and preventive care. She is board-certified in internal medicine, and specializes in acute inpatient care. Upon graduating from the University of Florida with a BA in Food Science and Human Nutrition, then from Ross University School of Medicine with high honors, she completed her residency at the Georgetown University/Washington Hospital Center program in Washington, DC. Dr. Yousaf McKay has participated in health fairs and patient awareness seminars and has worked internationally. Her most recent endeavor was in Kenya, where she worked with girls recovering from female genital mutation. From mentoring students to contributing to our curriculum development, she has an overall vision for utilizing her talents to educate and empower youth.
Sandy Salinas is part of the local and regional leadership team for Global Wealth Management. Sandy is a Texas native and started her career as a Financial Advisor at Salomon Smith Barney and Merrill Lynch in Dallas. After a decade as an advisor, her journey to management took her across the country and now has brought her to Virginia. Through these experiences, Sandy has seen the challenges that girls and young women face across the nation and believes education in health and finances will enhance their quality of life with the ability to make informed decisions. She believes health and financial literacy will in-turn provide a positive impact within their families and community. She is a member at St. Matthew the Apostle in Washington D.C. and currently sits on her company’s local diversity council. Over the years, her stewardship includes: Board Member of the Greater Dallas Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, University of North Texas FIREL Advisory Board, UNT Alumni Selection Committee, ALPFA, Collin County Committee on Aging, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, Make a Wish Foundation and the Dallas Symphony.
Geoffrey Chorbajian is currently the co-owner of Blue in Green, a clothing boutique in NYC. Originally from upstate NY, Geoffrey attended Northeastern University where he graduated with a degree in finance. After college, his career took an unexpected turn and he found himself at CARE International. There he spent over 10 years honing his skills in development, specifically individual major gifts. While at CARE, Geoffrey had the great privilege to travel the world and visit programs in several countries. It was during these trips that he developed a strong understanding of international development and the importance of targeting women and girls. After a life-changing career at CARE, Geoffrey went on to work for a few smaller non-profits where his responsibility was to design and implement major giving strategies as well as board management. Most of the organizations with which Geoffrey has worked have a focus on empowering women and girls. As the father of two daughters, he understands the value and importance of such work. More recently, Geoffrey moved to New Orleans where he continues to manage his store while raising his two daughters and doing some consulting work. His wife, Shaily Rahman, PhD, works at the University of Southern Mississippi, where she does research in the field of marine science.
Staff and Volunteers:
Roxana Muzzammel, Director of Fundraising and Donor Development
Roxana Muzzammel is the Director of Fundraising and Donor Development for Girls Health Ed since December 2014. She has effectively led two fundraising campaigns annually for the organization since her involvement with Girls Health Ed. Roxana comes from a background in event planning and fundraising for several other charities and holds a B.S. in Management Information Systems from Northeastern University. Roxana's philanthropic involvement also includes being on the Leadership Team for the National Capital Area (NCA) Chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) since 2013 and is currently on the board for Green Deshis. Roxana currently works for CACI International Inc. as a Business Process Analyst on a Cybersecurity project. She is also the founder for Grassroots-Fund, an automated fundraising platform. Roxana understands how to fundraise effectively via successful and proven grassroots fundraising outreach methods from her experience surpassing monetary goals for organizations. Coupled with her tech knowledge from over 10+ years in the technology sector, Roxana is skilled in leading the Girls Health Ed in effective fundraising methods.
Genevieve Cowan, Director of Finance
Genevieve is a graduate of Miami University where she double majored in Political Science and International Studies, with a concentration in conflict, peace, and diplomacy. After graduation, she moved back to her hometown of Washington, DC. She currently works for the Joint Committee on Taxation where she analyzes a diverse portfolio of tax law and financial policy issues. What really sparked Genevieve’s interest in girl’s health was her time studying abroad in Egypt. While in Egypt, she studied the dynamics of social change immediately preceding the Arab Spring and focused on the societal role of women and girls in rural versus urban areas. It was through this experience that she learned firsthand how empowered women and girls could be a catalyst for positive change. In her free time, Genevieve is an avid yogi, cyclist, and runner, who enjoys trying new work outs with friends all over the DC metropolitan area. She also loves to visit local farmers markets and create healthy meals.