Our Leadership

The leaders whose vision and collaboration is making the Global Solidarity Forum a catalyst for sustainable development

Board Members

Tim Welsh

Chair of the Board of Directors

Tim Welsh is Vice Chair, Consumer and Business Banking (CBB) at U.S. Bank–the fifth-largest bank in the country. In this role, he works with colleagues to achieve their collective purpose, which is to power the potential of consumers and businesses. Collectively the CBB group includes consumer products, branches, small businesses, mortgages, auto, and many elements of digital. CBB accounts for nearly half of U.S. Bank’s loans and deposits.

Previously, Tim was a Senior Partner at McKinsey & Company, based in Minneapolis. In his nearly 27 years at McKinsey, he served clients throughout the financial services and consumer industries. In particular, he served some of the nation’s leading insurers, banks, investment firms, consumer packaged goods, retailers, and health care companies. Within McKinsey, he played several leadership roles. He was one of 30 elected Senior Partners who serve on the McKinsey’s Shareholders Council (i.e., the Firm’s Board of Directors), and led the global Learning and Development area. Tim served for six years on the global Senior Partner Committee that evaluates other Senior Partners. In addition, he served as a co-leader of McKinsey’s global strategy/corporate finance practice, co-leader of the North American Life Insurance and Wealth Management practice, leader of the Midwest Financial Services practice, and Managing Partner of the Minneapolis office.

Tim also cares passionately about helping the Minneapolis-St. Paul community thrive. He is one of the founders of the Itasca Project, which has received detailed coverage in the NY Times, McKinsey Quarterly and Tom Friedman’s book “Thank You for Being Late.” He serves on the Boards of many non-profit organizations in the community and nationally.

Patrick W. McGrory

Patrick W. McGrory

Board Member and President

As a Private Wealth Advisor with Liberty Point Advisors, Patrick McGrory specializes in investment management, retirement planning, estate planning and charitable giving. Having been in the industry for over twenty years, he has been awarded the designation of Certified Financial Planner and Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor.

In addition to his work as an advisor, Patrick has played a significant role for over 25 years in his family’s foundation, the Raskob Foundation for Catholic Activities, where he currently serves as the Chairman. Patrick is a member of various councils for the Diocese of Camden, including the Bishop’s Finance Council where he currently serves as the Vice Chair as well as the Chair of the Catholic Schools Oversite Committee. His charitable work continues in his roles as a Board Member and Treasurer of the Foundation and Donors Interested in Catholic Activities and as a Board Member of The Saint John Vianney Center.

Patrick received his undergraduate degree from Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, where he served as the Hawk mascot, and continues to be deeply involved with the university and its alumni activities. He received his Master of Science in Financial Services and is now a PhD Candidate in Financial and Retirement Planning at The American College in King of Prussia, PA.

Patrick was born and raised in Wilmington, Delaware and now resides in Vineland, New Jersey with his wife, son and daughter.

Kerry Medek

Treasurer and Board Member

Kerry Medek is Managing Director of Global and Local Programs, responsible for strategy and partnerships at GHR Foundation, an independent philanthropy of service to people and their limitless potential for good. She is responsible for partnership investments globally, aimed at building the capacity of the global Catholic Church to serve those most vulnerable, and locally aimed at advancing racial equity in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. Through Kerry’s leadership, GHR answers an urgent call to action from Pope Francis to transform global development from a system of extraction to one of inclusion, paving the way for the most vulnerable to survive, thrive and drive systems change. Kerry has been with GHR Foundation for 14 years She is a member of the executive leadership team and leads the foundation’s engagement with the Vatican.

Joanne Driels

Board Member and Secretary

Joanne Driels is Advisor to the Managing Director, Global Policy & Advocacy for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
She serves on the Europe, Middle East, and East Asia (EMEEA) team for the foundation, based in its London office. The EMEEA team seeks to increase engagement in the foundation’s global health and development priorities with governments and partners. Joanne has been with the foundation for 17 years, during half of which she was responsible for organizing and leading trips for the Co-chairs and CEO, while the more recent half has involved grant management for advocacy partners, external relations, and leading global events.  She also oversees the foundation’s engagement with the Vatican. Joanne received a bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles. 

Susan M. Huber

Susan M. Huber

Board Member

Susan Huber is President, Ascension Global Mission, and Senior Vice President, Ascension, a faith-based healthcare organization dedicated to transformation through innovation across the continuum of care.

Ascension Global Mission engages in international efforts to improve health and living status for poor and vulnerable populations in low resource countries through collaborating with local and global communities, including sponsoring congregations, to foster long-term, sustainable change. Ascension Global Mission seeks to develop new models of partnership with other organizations and collaborate with local communities. In addition to her work with the Global Solidarity Forum, other international efforts include:
• Collaborating with a hospital in Haiti to enable quality healthcare through nursing education; developing a supply chain initiative to create a more reliable and sustainable source of supplies and equipment; and mentoring leadership, beginning with Human Resources, to ensure a qualified staff is recruited and retained.
• Creating systemic change in Guatemala through working with local communities to develop a “Model of Collaborative Governance,” a groundbreaking concept that works alongside community leaders to amplify their voice and empower them to create sustainable change in their communities.
• Leading efforts, consistent with Pope Francis’ Laudato Si’, to collaborate with accredited Medical Surplus Recovery Organizations to provide refurbished equipment and supplies to low resource countries, ensuring that donated equipment is in good working condition and consumable supplies are of good quality and not expired.

Sister Jane Wakahiu

Sister Jane Wakahiu

Board Member

Sister Jane Wakahiu, LSOSF, Ph.D., is a member of the institute of the Little Sisters of Saint Francis, Kenya. Wakahiu oversees, the planning, development, implementation and evaluation of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation’s Catholic Sisters Initiative and its Catholic Education Programs. Her responsibilities are to advance the vitality of congregations of women religious globally, enabling sisters to contribute more profoundly to sustainable human development, as well as to enhance the effectiveness of Catholic schools. She also contributes to the Foundation’s strategic planning.

Prior to joining Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, she was the Executive Director of the African Sisters Education Collaborative (ASEC) where she implemented the Collaborative’s many programs by working closely with conferences of major superiors, religious congregations and institutes, twenty-three partner colleges and universities in the United States and Africa, and major foundations. Wakahiu has extensively taught at the undergraduate and graduate level at Marywood University and has a breadth of teaching and administrative experience from leading a high school in Kenya and as a leader of women organizations. An accomplished author and editor, Wakahiu’s peer reviewed articles are published in national and international journals and a contributing writer for the Global Sisters Report.

Wakahiu earned a Bachelor of Education Degree from Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Kenya, a Master of Arts Degree from Saint Bonaventure University, Olean, New York, and Ph.D. in Human Development/Higher Education Administration from Marywood University, Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Mike Hoffman

Mike Hoffman

Emeritus Chair

Mike Hoffman is the Chairman of Changing Our World, which he co-founded over two decades ago. Changing Our World was the first philanthropic services firm to provide fundraising, management and corporate social engagement strategy to nonprofits and corporations alike, and the first fundraising consultancy to become part of Omnicom Group (NYSE: OMC). He is also the co-founder of Impact 360, a social impact technology company, and chairs its nonprofit division, SoulfulImpact.org. In addition, Mike is president and CEO of The Hoffman Brothers Foundation and is a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Mike and his wife Maggie have 3 children, Siobhan, Michael and Shannon.

Executive Director


Melanie Guard

Melanie Guard

Communications Manager

Melanie Guard serves as GSF’s Communications Manager, based in the United States. For the past 35 years, she has worked with numerous health care systems and hospitals leading broad-scale internal and external communications initiatives. Her expertise also includes event and conference planning; media relations and project management. Much of her career has supported Catholic organizations.

Paola Iappelli

Paola Iappelli

Events and Operations Manager

Paola Iappelli serves as GSF’s Event and Office Manager. For 10 years she served in the office of the President and CEO of Booz Allen Hamilton, Italy, sustaining both the activities of the CEO and his institutional roles as Member of the Boards of Directors and Foundations. She also worked as Office Manager at the Rome Headquarters of Booz Allen. In Italy she has collaborated with Anthony R. Tersigni, former President and CEO of ASCENSION. She played an active role in the organization of the XXXII International Conference on Health Disparities (CISAC), which was held in the Vatican in November 2017. She has supported the activities of the Hon. Frederick Vreeland, former US Ambassador in Morocco and Under-Secretary of State, as well as Dennis Redmont, at the Council for the US and Italy. Paola also collaborated with Geneva-based Eurovision, backing up the Rome Bureau and its Vatican activities for papal trips and major events.

Jini Sebakunzi

Program and Grant Manager

Jini Sebakunzi is the Program and Grant Manager for the Global Solidarity Fund. He is responsible for overseeing and managing all GSF programs and grants.

Jini has more than 15 years of experience in business development and project management in both the public and private sectors. He has worked in various leadership roles supporting social enterprises in Africa in partnerships with foundations, impact investors and private corporations.

Previously he worked as a Program Manager at Regions of Climate Action (R20), where his team won a two-year grant and launched a solar enterprise for rural women in Burundi, that produced an inclusive economic impact.

Anna Springer

Team Coordinator

Anna Springer serves as GSF’s Team Coordinator, based in Rome. Prior to joining GSF in 2020, she worked with Eurovision Italy, leading a remote-based team in providing administrative services to Eurovision Services in Geneva. She is experienced in archive management, travel logistics, invoice handling, and customer database management.

Alessandra Tarquini

Media and Communication
Senior Advisor

Alessandra Tarquini serves as GSF Media and Communication Senior Advisor, based in Rome. For over 20 years she has worked in the field of communication mostly for non-profit organizations with focus on international cooperation for development. Over the years she has gained experience collaborating in the design and development of communication strategies, communication and media activities for international organizations and global campaigns in the fight against poverty and for human rights.




Donation service temporarily unavailable.
Please try again later.