ProWorld Directors and Project Coordinators are experienced, capable, veteran travelers, and dedicated community leaders. Staff teams are composed of local and international development workers and range in size from 3 to 12 staff members per site. Local staff provide invaluable insight into their country and communities, while international staff relate to the cross-cultural challenges that participants face. For every eight program participants there is at least one in-country ProWorld staff member.
ProWorld staff members are part of every aspect of the program experience, encouraging cultural immersion, providing support, and often becoming friends as well as guides for the volunteer’s journey.
Richard Webb - Founder and President
Born in Lima, Richard holds a BA in History from Vassar College and a MBA from Oxford University with a focus on social enterprise.
Following his undergraduate studies Richard enjoyed a brief career as a professional soccer player (Hong Kong) after which he began to pursue his interest in grass roots development work with Visions Service Adventures. Visions’ model utilizes volunteers to meet development needs of poverty-stricken communities. This experience helped to shape the vision and model upon which ProPeru Service Corps was first incorporated in 1998.
ProPeru expanded in 2002 to include ProBelize and again in 2004 with ProMexico - the combination that forms the core of the new umbrella company, ProWorld Service Corps today. ProWorld Service Corps focuses on integrating Fair Trade into its projects, capturing volunteer-added value and utilizing a sustainable revenue model.
Having recently finished his MBA course as a Skoll Scholar sponsored by the Skoll Center for Social Enterprise, he is excited to further develop and perfect ProWorld’s social enterprise model through multi sector collaboration. Specifically, Richard is currently interested in applying Fair Trade standards to general tourism in Peru, Belize and Mexico.
Keenly interested in the potential for effective development work with volunteer participation, Richard has served on the executive committee of the International Volunteer Programs Association (IVPA) and is currently the legal representative of the Municipality of Urubamba, Peru in the United States. As the co-founder of The ProWorld Fund, a non profit organization positioned to work in conjunction with the existing ProWorld alliance, he also seeks to push the bounds of what is possible through the current volunteer funded model of ProWorld.
Still learning every day, Richard enjoys being inspired by the ProWorld team and the individuals of the communities in which it operates. Spending between two and five months a year on the project sites, Richard enjoys the additional perks of his work such as the opportunity to practice photography and getting his hands dirty at the work sites.
Nick Bryngelson - Director of Operations
Nick Bryngelson was born and raised in a family dedicated to public service and helping others achieve their maximum potential. These commitments to excellence and community service form the foundation of Nick's core values and his role as the Director of ProWorld Operations.
Nick holds a Masters Degree in Business and Engineering Management from the University of Colorado as well as a degree in Civil and Architectural Engineering. During his graduate program, Nick was awarded the National Science Foundation fellowship in Community Education and Outreach. Nick has taught engineering, physics, economics and business classes to graduate, undergraduate, and high school students. Individuals in the US and in South America have benefited from Nick's commitment to experiential education.
Seeking to serve our global community Nick and his wife, Precious, sold their possessions and bought one way tickets to Peru in 2000 searching for meaningful volunteer work. Working with multiple international development agencies Nick directed major infrastructure and sustainable development projects in small communities in Ecuador and Peru.
While in Peru, Nick was introduced to Richard Webb and the meaningful community development projects of ProPeru. Recognizing the sustainable positive impact the ProPeru programs have on local citizens and program participants, Nick joined forces with Richard to form the ProWorld Service Corps.
Nick and his family currently reside in Bellingham, Washington splitting their time between the US offices and each of the program locations.
Diane Gale - Administration Manager
Diane Gale, is a Montana native who along with her husband, Mark, manage the administrative offices of ProWorld. Diane’s services to ProWorld include, but are not limited to: answering incoming calls to ProWorld, responding to questions and forwarding messages to the appropriate staff member; processing and responding to incoming and outgoing mail; maintaining records; and providing support to participants, prospective participants, and their families by gathering and dispersing information to encourage the continued growth of ProWorld.
Her formal studies include literature, history, philosophy, psychology, and applied business skills. Her interests and passions center around learning and creating understanding of various cultures, helping others attain a better life, exploring the wonders life has to offer, and, of course, her family.
Adam Saks – Marketing and Placement Advisor
Adam was born and raised in Northwest New Jersey. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Latin American Studies from Brown University. In the summer of 2002 he volunteered with ProPeru in Urubamba in the Sacred Valley and has been looking for a chance to come back ever since. After graduating from Brown, Adam worked as a broadcast journalist in New Jersey. He joined ProWorld in May of 2006. Adam handles ProWorld marketing and alumni relations for the United States and Canada and splits his time between the US and Peru. He enjoys reading, writing, movies, hiking and good food.
Autumn DiGaetano-Fedoruk – Program and Placement Advisor
Autumn found her love for Latin America during her year as a Rotary scholar Argentina. She studied Economics, Spanish Linguistics, and Business at the University of Arizona, and spent her Junior year studying in Monterrey, Mexico and Salamanca, Spain and Senior year attending conferences and researching social and economic development in Guatemala. After graduating from the U of A, Autumn joined Teach for America - New York City and taught sixth-grade bilingual education in the Bronx for two years, while receiving her Masters of Science in Teaching. Autumn's passions include Latino culture, Spanish language, travel, cultural immersion, and "teaching" others about the opportunities that are at their fingertips!
Erin McIntee – Program and Placement Advisor
Erin attended Michigan State University where she earned her B.A. in advertising and public relations. Included in her undergraduate studies was a summer journalism program in Australia, during which she fell in love with travel. Since completing her studies in '05, Erin has taught ski school in Mammoth Lakes, CA, served as an Americorps *VISTA in Washington, DC and worked in development at The Salvation Army Metropolitan Divisional HQ in Chicago, IL. When not working, she can be found reading, eating delicious food, dancing or being crafty.
Jessica Mendoza de Echave – Director of Administration and Finance
Jessica Mendoza De Echave was born in Cusco, Peru in 1975. Jessica holds a degree in Tourism from the University of San Antonio Abad in Cusco where she also studied English.
Before joining ProPeru she worked as an English teacher, as a Marketing Specialist in a company in Cusco and later as the personal secretary of the Mayor of Urubamba, where she meet Richard Webb and began working with ProPeru in February 2003.
Kenny Ewan - Peru Country Director
Kenny Ewan, from Glasgow, Scotland, came to Peru as a volunteer English teacher in 2002 and loved the country so much that he decided to stay. Before coming to Peru Kenny graduated from the University of Dundee with a Bsc in Architecture.
After teaching English in the Sacred Valley he traveled all over South America, before returning to the Andes to work with ProPeru. After two years working as the student affairs coordinator in Urubamba, he became director of the Cusco base, and the semester program, in summer 2005. He recently became country director for Peru.
Sarah Schmidt - Urubamba Site Director
Sarah was born in San Diego, California. She received a BA in policy studies and a Masters in Public Administration from Syracuse University. While at S.U. she spent a semester studying abroad in Harare, Zimbabwe. The experience confirmed her desire to see the world and experience different cultures. After graduating, she joined the Peace Corps as a small business volunteer in Sololá, Guatemala. Upon returning to the states, Sarah joined Teach for America in the Rio Grande Valley, Texas. After teaching, she was a volunteer group leader with Operation Crossroads Africa in Ghana. She travelled in Western Africa and Central and South America and then joined ProPeru as a project coordinator in May, 2006. She is happy to be in Latin America again, in a job that combines her interests in development, education, and cross-cultural understanding. In addition to traveling, Sarah enjoys reading, running, biking, and hiking and is certified as a Wilderness First Responder.
Javier Saldivar Durand – Manager of Projects
Javier Saldivar Durand was born in Cusco, Peru in 1967. Javier, Manager of Projects and Professor of the Universidad Peruano de Ciencias Aplicadas (UPC), holds a degree in Biology from the Universidad Nacional San Antonio Abad del Cusco where he also studied English.
Since the 1990s he has dedicated his time traveling to remote communities in Peru to educate the local populations and introduce sustainable development. Collaborating with his father they wrote two books: "Runi Simi de Chumbivilcas" and "Mitos Cuentos y Leyendas de Chumbivilcas". In 2002 Javier began working with ProPeru.
Lily Calderón Olivera - Project Coordinator
Lily was born in Cusco, Peru in 1976. She received a degree in Psychology from the Universidad Particular Andina del Cusco. She has also studied at the post-graduate level Pyschotherapy, Stress Management, Play Therapy and the Neuropsychology of Learning at the Universidad San Agustín de Arequipa in conjunction with the Universidad de la Habana de Cuba. Since finishing her school work Lily spent a year volunteering with children with special needs, worked for six years as an assistant psychologist at an orphanage in Cusco and two more years at the Hospital in Calca—responsible for the areas of Mental Health and Domestic Violence. Lily has also worked with different high schools in and around Cusco and Calca helping students and their parents with a variety of issues. Lily is the Project Coordinator for all of ProPeru’s health projects and runs the Women’s/Childrens Center K’anchay Wasi.
Jaime Domingo Olave Quiñonez - Project Coordinator
Jaime was born and raised in Urubamba where he still lives with his wife, three daughters and a son. Jaime’s been working with ProPeru since 2002 where he began as a maintenance man and night watchman. Over time Jaime’s responsibilities have evolved so that he is now the Agrotourism Project Coordinator and in charge of running ProPeru’s miniprojects. Prior to work at ProPeru, Jaime worked in tourism at a famous local hotel as a waiter, with horses and other odd jobs.
J. Julio Figueroa - Volunteer Affairs Coordinator
Julio was born in Puno, Peru. He studied Veterinary Medicine at the Universidad Nacional del Altiplano de Puno, where also studied English for two years. After finishing school Julio began to work for the government with farmers in the department of Puno. He has also worked in the department of Cusco at cattle fairs and in a veterinary clinic for smaller animals. Julio joined ProPeru in February of 2006 as the Volunteer Affairs Coordinator.
Nicomedes Jara was born in the district of Quispicanchi in the Department of Cusco where he studied accounting at the University of San Antonio Abad del Cusco . He is currently president of the local drivers association of the Urubamba - Ollantaytambo route and has worked as a driver for ProPeru since 2000.
Due to his knowledge of Quechua, Spanish; and deep familiarity with the rural communities surrounding the Sacred Valley , Nico was recently hired as a project coordinator. Nico is an avid hiker, soccer player and Wyno dancer. His wife and their two daughters are dear members of the ProPeru community.
Gloria & Mariano - Peru Transport Team
Gloria and Mariano have been with ProPeru since our beginning. For a $50 fee they will meet you at the airport in Lima. If for any reason there needs to be a schedule change for pickup, this will be communicated to you before you leave for Peru by the ProPeru country staff.
Please be wary of people saying they've come to pick you up. You may also be approached by drivers offering you a fare.
If for some unforseen reason or circumstance they are not at the airport please call them at the number provided to you in your congratulations packet.
There are public phones inside the airport, they accept one Sole coins or telephone cards, ranging from ten soles on up or international phone cards with a Peru access. These can be purchased at the Telefonica booth on the first floor or from small snacks kiosk next to the stairs.
Jonny Roman – Country Director
Jonny grew up in southern Connecticut and later attended Temple University in Philadelphia. Nurturing a desire to travel, Jonny taught English for a year in Andalucia, Spain. Upon returning to the States he attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst where he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Social Thought and Political Economy (STPEC). His love of the Spanish language and his desire to explore more of the world led him to a ProPeru internship in September and October of 2004.
He fell in love with the highlands of Peru and became interested in development work. When a staff intern position with ProPeru opened the next summer he jumped at the chance. He then progressed to the full-time position of Student Affairs & Project Coordinator for the Cusco semester and NGO internship programs. In December of 2006 he moved to the same position with ProBelize and in April of 2007 he became ProBelize Country Director.
Kacki Kammann- Mexico Country Director
Kacki was raised in East Tennessee in the Smoky Mountains. She went to Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina and received a degree in Intercultural Studies for Business with Spanish. Upon graduating, she completed a summer internship in Puntarenas, Costa Rica working at an all-inclusive resort. Afterwards, she worked in Atlanta, Georgia for two years in the banking and health insurance business. She missed being abroad, so became TEFL-certified and went to teach business English in Santiago, Chile to executives. She lived in Chile for a year and half. During this time she was able to experience many different Latin American countries- Brazil, Venezuela, Cuba, Argentina, Bolivia, and Peru. Kacki has recently received her Masters in International Education from the School of International Training in Brattleboro, Vermont. She is fluent in Spanish and is attempting to learn Arabic. Kacki is happy that while working with ProMexico, she is able to combine her interests of intercultural immersion and development work.
Agustin Escobar – Project Coordinator
Agustin was born and raised in Oaxaca, Mexico. He spent five years traveling and working throughout the United States where he learned to speak English fluently. On his return home to Oaxaca, he worked with Manos de Ayuda for seven years, which is an organization that brings medical groups to Oaxaca to volunteer their services in small villages throughout the state of Oaxaca. Agustin started working with ProMexico in March 2006 as the Project Coordinator. He has many contacts in local NGO’s to provide a wealth of projects options for volunteers. He enjoys spending time with his son and driving his black VW bug.
Seasonal Staff – All Sites
Former ProWorld participants, local professionals, and other dedicated development workers join the ProWorld team during busy seasons. The staff team is an integral part of accomplishing the ProWorld mission and providing rewarding experiences for participants.
Program courses are taught by local and foreign professors approved and accredited by Jacksonville University in Peru, University of Belize in Belize, and Western Washington University in Mexico. Small class sizes enable professors to share in both the student’s course work and their daily projects. Serving as advisors and mentors, professors challenge students to explore new perspectives and achieve their academic potential.