Our Board of Directors

Brenda Diana

Chair

Brenda is a partner of Ropes & Gray, in the firm’s Private Client Group. She serves as trustee of numerous trusts, represents fiduciaries in the settlement of estates, and prepares estate plans for individuals. Brenda works with multiple generations of families with accumulated wealth, entrepreneurs, private and public company executives and shareholders, and professional public personalities, and other high net worth clients. Her practice involves the administration of client estates and trusts, including post-mortem tax planning and giving advice regarding fiduciary responsibilities. Brenda serves as executor for estates of varying size and complexity, helping clients through diverse personal transitions and providing advice on risk management, fiduciary investments and efficient tax alternatives to avoid potential issues or disputes. In addition, she coordinates the proper disposition of individual and family assets including art, antiques, real estate, and other valuables and works with well-known auction houses and advisors when appropriate. Brenda’s practice also involves estate planning, including advising clients on various charitable and philanthropic endeavors. She works closely with financial planners and philanthropic advisors to develop comprehensive plans to meet the unique needs of her clients. Brenda has a J.D. from New York University School of Law and a B.A. from Cornell University.

Sameer Ahmed

Vice Chair

Sameer Ahmed is a Clinical Instructor in Harvard Law School’s Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program, where he supervises students on strategic litigation and advocacy projects.  He was previously a law professor at Northeastern University School of Law.

Prior to that, Sameer served as a senior staff attorney at the ACLU of Southern California, where he specialized in immigrants’ rights litigation and policy advocacy. His work included challenging federal immigration national security policies that discriminate against Muslim immigrants, ensuring mentally ill immigrants have access to counsel in removal proceedings, protecting the rights of DACA recipients and immigrants in the military, and advocating on behalf of immigrants in Orange County, California. During that time, Sameer served on the board of the Orange County Justice Fund and the City of Santa Ana’s Sanctuary Policy Advisory Group.

Sameer has also served as a senior litigation associate at WilmerHale and as a Skadden Fellow at the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF). He has taught as an adjunct professor in the Immigrant Rights Clinic at the University of California, Irvine School of Law, and at the University of Maine School of Law. He clerked for Judge Kermit V. Lipez of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and for Judge Patti B. Saris of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts.  He received a J.D. from Yale Law School, a Master’s Degree in Legal Research from Oxford University (where he was a Marshall Scholar), and a Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations from Stanford University.

Sameer lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts, with his wife and daughter. He is the son of naturalized U.S. citizens from India, and his wife is a naturalized U.S. citizen from Canada with Iranian and Iraqi heritage.

Tref Borden

Tref Borden is the Executive Director of the Fish Family Foundation, a Boston-based private foundation focusing primarily on human services for low-income individuals and families in the Greater Boston area, with a particular interest in immigration and naturalization programs.  As Executive Director of the Foundation, Ms. Borden works closely with its Investment Committee managing the foundation’s assets in addition to managing the Fish Family Office.

Prior to coming to the Fish Family Foundation, Ms. Borden had served as Executive Director of the Tiger Foundation in New York City. The Tiger Foundation supports educational, vocational, and social services organizations focusing on the lowest-income, highest-risk populations in the city.  Ms. Borden left the Investment Banking field to join Tiger as its founding Executive Director.

Ms. Borden has served 10 years on the Philanthropy Massachusetts Board, formerly as chair.

Ed Boyajian

Ed is president and CEO of EDB, and drives the development and execution of EDB’s strategic vision and growth strategy in the database industry. He joined EDB in 2008 after six years at Red Hat, where he rose to Vice President and General Manager of North America. Ed played a central leadership role in the development of the modern business model for bringing open source to enterprises. Before that, he was Vice President of Red Hat’s global OEM business, responsible for all partnerships, including the early Linux adoption by HP, IBM, and Dell. As a 15-year veteran of the open source software movement, Ed is a seasoned enterprise software executive who emphasizes that EDB must be a technology-first business in order to lead the open source data management ecosystem. He is adamant that great technology above all else drives market leadership. Ed believes strongly in the importance of investing in partnerships across the open source and commercial software and hardware ecosystem. Ed served as a Captain in the U.S. Army and trained as an Airborne Ranger. Within EDB, he coaches and encourages each employee to hone leadership skills. Ed is known for his passion, relentless energy, and strategic leadership. Ed earned his MBA from Harvard Business School and BA from Boston University.

Susan Eaton

Dr. Susan Eaton is Professor of Practice in Social Policy and Director of the Sillerman Center for the Advancement of Philanthropy at Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy. At the Sillerman Center, Susan and her colleagues engage funders and their advisors, socially concerned scholars and non-profit practitioners to increase and enhance grantmaking to social justice causes.

Susan is an author, most recently, of the book, Integration Nation: Immigrants, Refugees and America at Its Best (The New Press, 2016), about myriad efforts that welcome and incorporate immigrants into their new communities across the United States. She also is the author of the critically acclaimed, The Children In Room E4: American Education on Trial (Algonquin, 2007), which chronicles a landmark civil rights case and life in a classroom and neighborhood in Hartford, Connecticut and The Other Boston Busing Story: What’s Won and Lost Across the Boundary Line (Yale, 2001), a qualitative interview study of the adult lives of African Americans who had participated in a voluntary school desegregation effort in suburban Boston. She is co-author, with Gary Orfield, of Dismantling Desegregation: The Quiet Reversal of Brown v. Board of Education. (New Press, 1996).

Prior to her appointment at Heller in 2015, Susan was research director at the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard Law School and an adjunct lecturer at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education. While at Harvard, Susan founded and co-directed the storytelling project One Nation Indivisible, which amplifies the voices and work of people creating and sustaining racially, culturally and linguistically integrated schools and other social institutions.

Natalia Ivanytsky

Natalia is the Director of Global Accounting at Converse Inc., a subsidiary of Nike Inc. At Converse, Natalia oversees a team of accountants and is primarily responsible for external financial reporting, technical accounting, tax and treasury operations. She is a CPA and a graduate of Boston College with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and a minor in International Studies. Natalia was born in Lviv, Ukraine and emigrated to the United States with her parents in 1993. She studied abroad in Madrid, Spain and did a secondment to Melbourne, Australia with her previous employer, PwC, for three years. Natalia lives in Charlestown with her fiancé, Ryan, and their adopted dog Kali, who was rescued from a shelter in Little Rock, Arkansas. Natalia previously volunteered with the immigration department at the International Rescue Committee office in Boston, MA and has volunteered her time on various small consulting-type projects while at PwC with different not for profit organizations.

Bianca Jordan

Bianca Jordan is the founder and owner of Brazen Legal, an immigration law firm on a mission to help every eligible immigrant obtain legal status in the United States.

Prior to becoming an immigration lawyer, she served as a consultant to global companies and non-governmental organizations helping them develop socioeconomic strategies, social media marketing, and everything in between. As an attorney, she has used these skills and experience to assist women entrepreneurs in Haiti and Massachusetts with creating their small businesses on a solid foundation by drafting their contracts, registering their trademarks, and filing their corporate documents.

When she’s not busy fighting for her clients, she enjoys boxing, cooking, and educating people about their legal rights and options through social media

Andy Liebman

Andy Liebman is award-winning filmmaker, software entrepreneur, and political activist. Having graduated from Tufts University with a bachelor’s degree in philosophy, he began his career in the early 1980’s as a producer, director, writer and editor of documentary and docudrama films for PBS and the Discovery Channel – including many episodes of Frontline, NOVA, Scientific American Frontiers, Race to Save the Planet (environment), and The Secret of Life (genetics).  He won the duPont Columbia award for excellence in journalism as well as multiple national Emmy awards for his ground-breaking work covering science, history, nature and politics. While producing a Discovery Channel series that was following a simulated human mission to Mars and that was being shot and edited by a team of people in below freezing weather in the Canadian Arctic, he conceived of technology that would enable a group of directors, video editors and assistants to work collaboratively (a problem he faced in this particular production), leading to the founding of EditShare.

Andy served as CEO of EditShare for 15 years, and his vision for how technology could fuel collaboration and bring efficiency to production had a major impact on the way television programs and films were made around the world.

As Andy stepped back from EditShare, he got involved in politics and worked diligently during the 2020 election cycle to get out and protect the vote.  Using his organization, technology, and communication skills, he helped recruit and manage a small army of phone bankers and letter writers. Moving forward, Andy plans to stay involved with political and social activism.  He is also currently establishing a new nonprofit that’s focused on getting fiction and non-fiction media to become a more constructive force in the world.

Milton Manousaridis

Treasurer

Milton is V.P. Relationship Manager of Commercial and Business Banking at Wellesley Bank. He acquires, develops, and maintains a successful portfolio of relationships, while offering unparalleled banking service at all levels. He prides himself in providing banking service along with value to businesses, private clients as well as non-profit verticals.

Milton received his B.A. in Industrial Psychology/Organizational Behavior from the University of Massachusetts, Boston. Even though he calls Boston and the Metrowest his home, he does not forget his Hellenic roots and what it means to be an immigrant. This is one of the driving reasons he has joined Project Citizenship.

In addition to multiple networking groups, he is member of USA500 Boston Seaport and serves on the Wellesley Bank Charitable Foundation Board of Directors, where he has the opportunity to give back to the communities which he serves.

Teresa Maynard

Teresa is the owner and operator of Sweet Teez Bakery in Dorchester, MA that specialize in custom cakes, cupcakes, pies, brownies with classic flavors and creative designs since February 2016. Prior to her current position, Teresa worked at Harvard University as the Assistant Director of Fundraiser and User Support where she acquired experience in supporting senior management, data management, and organizing fundraisers. During this time, she also worked closely with the research department to develop prospect lists for peer reviews. Teresa received her B.A. and Masters in Communications from The College of New Rochelle

Denise Porche

Denise Porche has held leadership roles in philanthropy, social service provision, and community activism for more than two decades. Presently, Denise is Executive Director of the Island Foundation, which she has led since 2009. Under her leadership, the Island Foundation has increased its funding for equity and inclusion, basic needs, and educational and work opportunities for underserved populations. She also founded the Southeastern Massachusetts Food Security Network and the Women CEO’s Group.

Prior to joining the Island Foundation, Denise was a fellow at the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice at Harvard Law School. While at Harvard, she worked on inclusion projects and immigration issues, and she was a member of the Harvard Diversity Working Group. And before that, Denise spent many years at Catholic Social Services directing the Office for Child Protection and the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.

Denise holds an MSW from Boston University and a BA in English Literature from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Scott Posnick

Scott Posnick is a Director & Consulting CFO in AAFCPAs’ Managed Accounting Solutions (MAS) practice. He provides high-level, outsourced CFO oversight and strategic planning, including financial forecasts & analysis and advising on growth strategies, business transactions, tax optimization, and strengthening internal controls. He has 35+ years of diverse, hands-on industry experience, including high tech, biotech, manufacturing, distribution & wholesale, professional services, as well as many traditional New England-based industries. Scott is well-versed in the issues and complexities facing commercial company entrepreneurs, and he makes himself an invaluable source of financial guidance as an extended member of client management teams. He provides hands-on advice and counsel on areas critical to the success of AAFCPAs’ clients. Areas include budgeting, forecasting and cash management; strategies to raise, invest, optimize, and preserve capital; leveraging opportunities and controlling risks associated with mergers, acquisitions, and exits/divestitures; and establishing, maintaining, and evaluating business resources such as attorneys, bankers, auditors, insurance agents.
Scott is passionate about providing trust, guidance, responsiveness, and clear communication to companies and their owners/shareholders at various stages of growth. He is a proven team player, thoughtful and professional. He has an M.B.A. from Suffolk University Sawyer School of Business and a B.S. from Babson College. He is also a Certified Management Accountant (CMA).

 

Katherine Rivet

Katherine Rivet works for Boston Consulting Group as their Global Director of Career Development, a role she has held since 2019.   She is passionate about talent development and support for diversity, with professional experience working in Mexico, Brazil, and the US.

In addition, Katherine has actively worked to support internal efforts to promote work-life sustainability (hosting a successful internal podcast focused on personal balance and sustainability) as well as diversity and inclusion (as a member of the Global Services Inclusion Accelerator team).  She is an active Dartmouth alum, serving on Tuck Business School’s Latin American Board from 2011-2013.

She received a BA in International Relations with a minor in Latin American Studies from Tufts University and an MBA from The Amos Tuck Business School at Dartmouth College.  She lives near Boston with her husband Cesar, their children Santiago and Sofia, and their beloved dog Francisco Lopez (aka Pancho).  She is fluent in Spanish and is conversant in Brazilian Portuguese.

Nancy Rousseau

Nancy Rachel Rousseau, a Haitian-American, has lived in Massachusetts for twenty-five years. Focused on rebuilding community, Ms. Rousseau has committed her life to helping others advance their own lives and serving as a bridge to resources. She believes community will improve as each person – young and old – is empowered to do more.    Nancy is Founder of Cultivate Womanhood, Inc. – home to the Boston’s Next Top Model Summer Program, a confidence-building program for girls, which is currently under reorganization. She is a proud member of the Psi Iota Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, for which she serves as the 1st Vice President and Chairperson of the Connection and Social Action Committee.

Ms. Rousseau is a two-time graduate of Northeastern University. She holds a Master of Science in both Nonprofit Management and Leadership and a Bachelor’s degree in Finance and Management.

Alicia Rubio-Spring

Clerk

Alicia is an associate in Goodwin Procter’s Business Litigation Group. She represents clients in a variety of complex litigation matters in both federal and state court, including general commercial litigation, post-closing disputes, and consumer financial services litigation. Alicia also dedicates a significant portion of her practice to pro bono immigration services, devoting particular attention to unaccompanied minors and asylum-seekers. Ms. Rubio received her B.A. from Georgetown University and her J.D. from Boston College Law School. She was thrilled to join the Project Citizenship board in 2016.

Jean Russell

Jean serves as Vice President of Gallagher Student Health & Special Risk at Arthur J. Gallagher & Co., 3rd largest and a global leader providing a full range of insurance and risk management products and services, including P&C, employee benefits, and student health. Jean is responsible for executing a strategic sales, marketing and consulting to achieve continued growth in higher education markets across the country. Jean ensures that all aspects of client’s programs are managed proactively and efficiently. She also maintains strong relationships with insurance underwriters, claims administrators, and other vendors within the practice to advocate objectively on behalf Gallagher Student Health Plans clients.

Before joining Gallagher, Jean worked for over 30 years in the employee benefits industry holding various positions. Jean’s experience includes founding BenefitsMart, an insurance brokerage and consulting firm advising in Employee Benefits and all aspects of group insurance administration, compliance, cost containment strategies, and technology. BenefitsMart was acquired by HUB International, world’s 4th largest insurance brokerage and largest in New England. Jean served as Senior Vice President, Employee Benefits of HUB International. Outside of her leadership role with Gallagher, Jean is an active member and former President of the Massachusetts Association of Health Underwriters – a member of the National Association of Health Underwriters.

She currently serves as a Board of Trustee for Tufts Medical Center Physicians Organization and a member of the Governor’s Board for Tufts Medical Center, Executive Board of Commonwealth Compact, and has served on other boards. Previously, Jean served as council member of MA Health Care Quality and Cost Council, dedicated to the development of health care cost controls while improving the quality of care as part of MA Health Care Reform. She is also a graduate of LEAD Boston. Jean is a recipient of the YWCA of Boston’s Academy of Women Achievers, an award recognizing Boston’s most influential women.

Detlev Suderow

Detlev Suderow is the retired Senior Vice President of Human Resource and Organization Effectiveness for FLIR Systems, Inc.  FLIR is an infrared technology company with global operations listed twice among Business Week’s 100 fastest growing companies.  Prior to joining FLIR Systems, Detlev served as Vice President of Human Resources for Inframetrics, a fast growth start up technology company.  His career includes his role as the Human Resource Manager for CLARiiON, the entrepreneurial business division of Data General Corporation, and a thirteen year career at Digital Equipment Corporation as H.R. Manager, Organizational Development Manager, and Training and Development Manager.

Detlev considers himself fortunate enough to have capped his decades-long business career with a pivot to academia: as Professor of the Practice and Senior Lecturer at the International Business School, Brandeis University.  Here he served as the career advisor for the undergraduate business program and counseled graduate students at the International Business School. He co continues to serve on numerous Brandeis University committees and boards.

For Detlev, an immigrant himself (Germany), US Citizenship is a gift that keeps on giving, and one that brings him enthusiastically into the Project Citizenship fold. He holds degrees from Brandeis University (BA), Tufts University (MA) and The University of Zurich. Together with his immigrant wife (Canada) he is the parent of two first generation sons.

Eleonora Villegas-Reimers

Eleonora Villegas-Reimers is a Clinical Professor and Chair of the Department of Teaching and Learning at the Boston University Wheelock College of Education and Human Development. At the historic Wheelock College (before it merged with Boston University), she served as the Dean of the School of Education and Child Life, Acting Dean of the Child and Family Studies Division, Chair of the Department of Elementary and Special Education, and Coordinator of various programs. Her prior work includes experience as a high-school teacher, an assistant principal, and as acting director of the Office of International Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Dr. Villegas-Reimers has served as consultant to a number of international and national organizations such as UNESCO, the Inter-American Development Bank, the World Bank, the Board on International Comparative Studies of the National Research Council, the Academy for Educational Development, the Singapore National Institute of Education, and WGBH (a Public Television Station in Boston) on matters related to education and teacher preparation and development.   Dr. Villegas-Reimers served as a member of the Massachusetts State Department of Early Education and Care (DEEC) Board between 2010 and 2021. She is also a founding member of the Massachusetts Consortium for Socio-Emotional Learning in Teacher Education (SEL-TEd), where she serves in the Executive Committee, and is an advisor to SEL4US. She currently serves as a member of the Board at TERC, an organization focused on Math and Science education research and practice.

 

Dr. Villegas-Reimers holds a Master of Education and Doctor of Education degree from Harvard University Graduate School of Education, and a bachelor’s degree in Pedagogical Sciences from the Universidad Católica Andrés Bello in Venezuela.

 

 

Kim West

Kim West has been a prosecutor at the local, state, federal and international level for more than two decades. This extensive government experience allows her to expertly assist clients in a wide range of areas including, government investigations, corporate compliance and health care matters. She is also focused on international clients and their interactions with U.S. entities. Prior to joining the firm, Ms. West was the Chief of the Criminal Bureau in the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office. In that capacity, she supervised a team of over 120 professionals responsible for investigating and prosecuting a wide range of financial, fraud, public corruption, narcotics, gaming, human trafficking, and other offenses; defending convictions on appeal; and assisting victims and witnesses. Ms. West joined the AGO in 2015 from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Massachusetts, where she served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Health Care Fraud Unit. She previously served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Anti-Terrorism and National Security Unit, joining the Unit after 9/11.

Ms. West also served for five years as a trial attorney at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague, where she prosecuted Radovan Karadžić, who was found guilty of directing the genocide of more than 7,000 Bosnian Muslims in the worst massacre on European soil since the Holocaust. Ms. West started her career as an Assistant District Attorney in Plymouth County.  Ms. West resides outside of Boston with her husband and two young sons.

 

Stay Connected