Conference Chair
Ronald Jackson
Head of the Disaster Risk Reduction & Recovery Team (DRT) for Building Resilience
UNDP - UN Development Programme

Mr. Ronald Jackson heads the Disaster Risk Reduction & Recovery Team (DRT) for Building Resilience in the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Geneva, Switzerland. He is a member of both the Crisis Bureau senior management team and the GPN management team. His appointment on May 1st, 2020 follows 7 years of unwavering and exemplary service as, Executive Director of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA). Under his stewardship, the Agency gained further recognition and prominence throughout the Caribbean and globally as one of the foremost regional disaster risk management institutions and a preferred partner for a safe and more resilient Caribbean. Mr. Jackson has also provided sterling leadership of the regional coordination and responses to Dominica, St. Lucia and St. Vincent after the Christmas Trough in 2013, Tropical Storm Erika in Dominica in 2015, Hurricanes Irma and Maria (impacting 9 of CDEMA Participating States) in 2017, Hurricane Dorian in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas in 2019 and in the COVID-19 Pandemic. Prior to his role in CDEMA, Mr Jackson served as Director General of the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) in Jamaica, having previously served ODPEM as Deputy Director General, Senior Director of the Preparedness and Operations Division, and as Regional Coordinator for the Southern parishes.

Mr. Jackson has been extensively involved in disaster risk management at the national, regional, and international level in various capacities. He was instrumental in the development of the Guidelines for Child-Friendly Disaster Management and Response, Reinstatement of the ODPEM Dedicated Communication Network and Revision of the Emergency Welfare Plan. In 2010 Mr. Jackson received a Certificate of Commendation from the Caribbean Community for his contribution to the rescue and recovery efforts in the aftermath of the January 2010 Haiti Earthquake. Mr. Jackson also served as a member of CDEMA’s Technical Advisory Committee, President of the IDB Caribbean Policy Dialogue Forum, the co-chair for the Inter American Network for Disaster Management and represented the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) Member States on the Hyogo Framework for Action Mid-Term Review Committee and Post-2015 Hyogo Framework for Action Committee.

Keynote Speakers
H.E. Janaina Tewaney Mencomo
Minister of Government
Republic of Panama

Her Excellency Janaina Tewaney Mencomo is currently the Minister of Government of the Republic of Panama. Appointed by President Laurentino Cortizo in March 2020, her time as minister has been marked by the fight against the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic in some of the country's key areas, such as the country's indigenous regions and the penitentiary system, both of which have seen some of the lowest levels of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths in the region. After hurricanes Eta and Iota devastated huge swathes of Western Panama in November 2020, she led an interagency modernization effort for the country's Civil Protection System, which led to the creation of an Integrated Disaster Risk Management Cabinet, a unified top-level decision-making body to streamline and optimize Panama's Risk Management structure.

Minister Tewaney was previously a close Advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, responsible for Panama’s foreign policy strategies relating to security, and the President of the country's Official Missions abroad. She has also served as an independent consultant on International Trade and International Policy and as an International Policy Analyst on terrorism financing, geopolitics, security, and water diplomacy at Strategic Foresight Group (SFG) in India. She has worked as a Research Analyst on topics of International Humanitarian Law, Nuclear Disarmament, International Mediation and Arbitration, Chemical and Conventional Weapons at the University of Hong Kong. In 2009 she served as a negotiating lawyer at the Ministry of Commerce and Industries of Panama, participating on the negotiations of the Free Trade Agreements between Panama and many of its commercial partners. Mrs. Tewaney is a graduate in Law and Political Science from the University of Panama, in addition to holding two master's degrees, in Public International Law from the Free University of Brussels and in Arbitration and Dispute Resolution Law from the University of Hong Kong.
Claudia Herrera
Executive Secretary
CEPREDENAC - Coordination Center for the Prevention of Natural Disasters in Central America

Currently serving as Executive Secretary of CEPREDENAC, Ms. Claudia Herrera has a degree in Business Administration and 20 years experience in the Integral Risk Management of Disasters, a field in which she became involved after the Hurricane Mitch disaster in 1998. Ms. Herrera was part of the team responsible for the harmonization of the Central American Policy on Comprehensive Risk Management of Disasters within the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, coordinating the participation of CEPREDENAC with the Executive Committee of the Central American Integration System (SICA), government agencies, national systems, international cooperation and strategic actors linked to Disaster Risk Reduction, until its approval at the 2017 SICA Summit of Presidents and Heads of State. Claudia also led the process for the update of the Regional Plan for Disaster Risk Reduction 2019-2023. Previously she has served as Regional Advisor in the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR); as an EU representative coordinating Regional Projects of the General Directorate of Humanitarian Aid (DG-ECHO) and has led national spaces such as the Humanitarian Network in Honduras and the National Forum of Act Alliance. She has also coordinated projects financed by the Ministry of Development of the United Kingdom (DFID), and the UN Development Program (UNDP), among others.
Carlos Uribe
Regional Programme Officer
UNDRR - UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction

Mr. Carlos Uribe is the Risk Knowledge Officer of UNDRR Regional Office for the Americas and the Caribbean. Carlos is a Colombian / French national and his academic background includes a degree in Environmental Engineering and a Master of Science in the field of Master in Geosciences, Environment and Risks. Carlos has over fourteen years of international experience in the field of Disaster Risk Reduction and crisis management - in the Caribbean, Asia, Africa, and Europe. He has been actively involved in initiatives in development contexts; including management positions in the area of disaster risk reduction, climate change and environment in the past years, including four years as technical specialist in Disaster Risk Reduction within UNDP in Haiti and in other crisis context as part of the UNDAC team. He has an important experience in the production and application of risk knowledge tools such as the mapping of vulnerabilities, exposure and disaster impacts that he developed as part of initiatives like the International Charter Space and Mayor Disasters and the EU Copernicus Programme. Carlos has a strong background in natural hazards description, interpretation and analysis, disaster risk reduction strategies and disaster response.

Workshop Hosts
Matthew Johnson
Industry Liaison & Communications Director,Management Bureau (M/OAA)
USAID - U.S. Agency for International Development

Matthew Johnson is the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Industry Liaison and Communications Director for the Office of Acquisition and Assistance. In this role, he helps to connect and engage with organizations around doing business with USAID. He has led a number of initiatives in support of these efforts, including the creation of the Agency’s live-feed Business Forecast, the development of the first-ever Acquisition and Assistance Strategy, and the New Partnerships Initiative. He has been with USAID since 2008. Prior to joining USAID, he served as the Director of Presidential Personal Correspondence and the Deputy Director of Presidential Writers at the White House.

Matthew is hosting the pre-event USAID Funding Workshop.
Rogerio Mobilia
Deputy Head of Regional Office for Latin America & the Caribbean (ROLAC)
OCHA - UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Appointed as Deputy Head of Office of OCHA ROLAC in 2019, after heading the Information Services Unit since 2007. Mr. Silva also led the Regional Office during 2020 until July 2021 during the pandemic of COVID-19. With studies in System Technology Engineering, Mr. Silva counts with more than 25 years of experience on disasters management with the United Nations as an international servant and other years on private sector. Has worked extensively in areas of automatization, communication, information management and coordination responses during complex crisis or emergencies resulting from natural disasters. Most recently, he has led OCHA and other international specialized teams supporting emergency responses in Americas and the Caribbean and has dedicated his humanitarian life working for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs also in Africa, Asia.

Rogerio is hosting the pre-event OCHA Procurement Workshop.
Stefano Riera
Operational Procurement Manager,Global Humanitarian Services & Supply Chain Management - Americas Office
IFRC - International Federation of Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies

Stefano joined IFRC as Procurement Intern in 2005; This experience focused his path on the Humanitarian Sector. Since then, he joined the IFRC team, and has been deployed to Operations in Africa, Asia, HQ in Geneva and in the Americas including Haiti Earthquake Operation. Stefano counts with more than 15 years of experience in Humanitarian Supply Chain and holds a university degree in International Business and Logistics.

Stefano is hosting the pre-event IFRC Logistics Supplier Workshop.
Lt Col (Retd) Anton Gash
Defence, Security & Crisis Consultant/Business Development Manager
Universal Defence & Security Solutions

Lieutenant Colonel (Retd) Anton Gash was the British Defence Attaché for the Caribbean until mid-2020, supporting Defence relations with 19 regional countries and territories, and was heavily involved in the UK and international military responses to Hurricanes Irma/Maria in 2017 and Dorian in 2019. He was previously Defence Attaché to Sri Lanka (2007-2009) and to Ghana, Mali, Cote D’Ivoire and Togo (2010-2013), and has served with the European Union in Brussels (2013-2016). His operational deployments include Iraq and Afghanistan with the British Army, and Cyprus (UNFICYP) and Mali (MINUSMA) with the United Nations. A tank soldier by background, he has also specialised in Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defence. He holds Masters degrees from Oxford, Cranfield and King’s College London, and is currently working towards a Disaster Management MSc with Bournemouth University. He works with an expert team of former military and academics to deliver Command, Leadership and Crisis/Disaster training programmes across the Caribbean.

Anton is co-hosting the post-event Disaster Simulation Exercise & Workshop with ADR2022 Chair, Ronald Jackson of UNDP.

Jorge Ortiz (Panel Chair)
Director of Sales Latin America & the Caribbean
Western Shelter Systems

Involved in Disaster Management for over 15 years, Jorge started with the Department of Health in Puerto Rico as a Disaster Management Coordinator. He transitioned to Western Shelter Systems in 2012 where he has progressed from Regional Sales Manager to his current position. Jorge has deployed to over 12 different countries across Latin America in support of Shelter deployment for Disaster Management. Recently, he has been training disaster emergency management teams on the deployment of a Field Hospital in support of COVID-19 across the Caribbean.
Andres Cruz
Disaster Risk Reduction & Response Manager LAC
Habitat for Humanity International

Andres Cruz is a Colombian architect, he is a specialist in natural resource management, environment, and disaster response with a master's degree in environmental management and assessment. With more than 18 years of professional experience in DR3 projects, within large international cooperation projects for different donors in South America, Central America, the Caribbean, and Africa. Andres is currently the Caribbean Risk Reduction Program Manager for Habitat for Humanity International and has extensive experience working in disaster response with agencies such as PAHO, USAID, IOM, PADF, among others. He is recognized for the successful management to execute a comprehensive response to emergencies due to hurricanes between 2016 and 2021 in the Caribbean and South America, as well as in the armed conflict and floods in South Sudan and Colombia between 2010 and 2015.
Eduardo Gutiérrez
Sub Regional Manager for CAM
USAID's Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA)

Eduardo Gutiérrez Gaslin joined USAID's Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) in 2009 and currently serves as Sub regional Manager for Central America, México and the Dominican Republic. He holds a Masters degree in Education Science with emphasis in Educational Research and Administration. Prior to joining OFDA, Eduardo amassed 29 years of teaching experience, serving 23 years as a volunteer firefighter.
Liza Hernandez-Betancourth (virtual)
Regional Lead for Americas and the Caribbean
GNDR - Global Network of Civil Society Organisations for Disaster Reduction

Mrs. Hernandez-Betancourth is a Guatemalan, BA in Community Nutrition from the University of San Carlos de Guatemala; 2 Postgraduate Programs in Project Development and Political Advocacy and Community Development and a Master's Degree in Gender, Sexuality and Public Policy. She has worked for more than 20 years in the field of health, public nutrition, and epidemiology with a solid background in applied research in health sciences from the Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging-HNRCA at Tufts University. Previously, Mrs. Hernandez-Betancourth served as Regional Director of Grant Acquisition and Management for Central America and Mexico at World Vision working with international cooperation and has extensive experience with bilateral and multilateral funds, as well as private foundations for Latin America; currently she is the Regional Leader for the Global Network of Organizations of civil society for disaster reduction-GNDR.
Marcus Cadet
Director - National Health Emergency Management Unit (UNGUS)
Haiti Ministry of Public Health & Population (MSPP)

Marcus Cadet is a planner and statistical analyst. Holder of a master's degree in Development Economics and International Project Management, he currently works at the Ministry of Public Health and Population in Haiti as Director of the National Unit for the Management of Health Emergencies, regardless of their origin natural or anthropogenic. Very interested in planning, organizational diagnosis, public policies, statistics, monitoring and evaluation, risks and disasters related to health, Marcus has been in the recent past alternately, Head of Section and Head of Planning Department, Coordinator of the External Cooperation Unit within the Ministry. He recently published a book on the issue of planning in Haiti.
Roger Alonso Morgui
Head of Disaster, Climate & Crisis: Prevention, Response & Recovery
IFRC - International Federation of Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies

Roger leads the IFRC Disaster, Climate and Crisis team in the America Regional Office. He became a Red Cross volunteer lifeguard in his home town back in the 90s. For a short period after completing his studies, he worked for the private sector in International Banking and Internet Project Management. Since then, he has been volunteering and working with the Red Cross in Search and Rescue, Volunteer Management, Training, Operations Management, Migration, Disaster Risk Reduction and Livelihoods in response to crisis and disasters in several countries like Indonesia, Philippines, Mauritania, DRC, Mozambique or Honduras. He holds a Degree in Economics Science and Post graduate degree in Project Cycle Management in International Cooperation.
Shelley Cheatham (Panel Chair)
Head of Regional Office for Latin America & the Caribbean (ROLAC)
OCHA - UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Ms. Shelley Cheatham was appointed as Head of Office of OCHA ROLAC in August 2021, with nearly 20 years of experience working in humanitarian assistance and emergency management. Prior to joining ROLAC, Ms. Cheatham was the OCHA Deputy Head of Office in Myanmar from 2019 to 2021, leading coordinated response to conflict, protracted displacement, and recurrent natural hazards, as well as the COVID-19 pandemic and the February 2021 military coup. Ms. Cheatham has also worked at OCHA headquarters managing the Rapid Response and Underfunded Emergencies Windows of the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF). In 2015-16, Ms. Cheatham worked in ROLAC coordinating natural disaster response efforts in the region. Before joining OCHA in 2008, Ms. Cheatham worked for the American Red Cross, USAID, and the World Bank. She has an undergraduate degree from the Universidad de Guadalajara in Mexico and a graduate degree from the George Washington University in the United States.
Arlen Martinez Ortiz (virtual)
Disaster Risk Reduction Coordinator,Central America Mission
Action Against Hunger

Arlen holds a Degree in International Relations & Foreign Trade, and a Master’s in Risk Assessment & Disaster Reduction, specializing in Project Formulation and Evaluation, Poverty, Food Security & Climate Change. She possesses more than 18 years working experience in the areas of climate change, development planning and external cooperation in the field of project management for disaster risk reduction. Arlen currently serves as Coordinator for Disaster Risk Reduction at Action Against Hunger Mission Central America.
Drew Strobel
Global Surge Delegate
American Red Cross

Drew has worked with the American Red Cross (ARC) International Services for over 19 years and has significant domestic and international experience in Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), Europe and Africa. Before joining ARC, he directed relief and recovery programs focused on refugees and displaced populations in Africa and the Balkans. Previously a volunteer for the ARC, his first deployment was to Guatemala as Head of Programs to respond to Hurricane Mitch in 1999. He continued with the ARC in Latin America for another six years, covering multiple South American operations (Colombia, Ecuador). In 2005 he served as the Senior Field Representative for the ARC based in Thailand, covering Myanmar/Burma and Bangladesh, managing relief and recovery efforts for the 2004 Southeast Asia tsunami recovery operations, followed by an assignment as Operations Coordinator with the Disaster Management Unit in the Asia Pacific Zone office of IFRC in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. In 2015 Drew served as the Innovation Coordinator for the IFRC, managing the Community Engagement and Accountability to Beneficiaries (CEA) approach throughout the Asia Pacific region. From 2016 to 2017 Drew served as the Senior Program Manager/Deputy Chief of Party for the Regional Disaster Preparedness Program (RDAP) in LAC with USAID/OFDA based in Costa Rica. He has also worked domestically as a volunteer and later as an international consultant with Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) in LAC, assisting their 2017 hurricane response in the eastern Caribbean. Since 2018 Drew has been working as a Global Surge Delegate for ARC, and served as Operations Manager in Lombok, Indonesia (2018) and Field Coordinator for Grand Bahama Island for the Hurricane Dorian Operation for the IFRC (2019). He is currently based in Panama and serving as the Response Lead for the LAC region for American Red Cross.
Keisha Linton
Disaster Management & Humanitarian Assistance Coordinator
Regional Security System (RSS)

A multi-skilled young professional with a diverse background in international relations and disaster risk management, who holds a BSc in International Relations from the UWI Mona and an MSc in Risk Crisis and Disaster Management from the University of Leicester in the UK. With almost ten years in the disaster management arena, Keisha has worked with organizations geared to improving disaster risk management in the region including PAHO, CDEMA, UNDP and currently, the RSS HQ. Given the area in which she works, she is also skilled in emergency preparedness and response, as well as stakeholder engagement, most notably Civil-Military relations. One of Keisha's favourite past-times is engaging in gastronomical experiences, so you can always find her enjoying a meal at a local restaurant.
COL Steven Gventer (Panel Chair)
Joint Task Force-Bravo

Colonel Steven E. Gventer is a native of Grapevine, Texas and a graduate of Baylor University with a BS in Education. In 1998, he joined the Army and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in Armor from Officer Candidate School. He has served as a logistics officer and an Operations officer several times and has commanded at every level up to the Brigade with Joint Task Force Bravo. His career has been highlighted by time commanding in Southeast Asia, across most of Europe, throughout the Middle East and now throughout Central America. He is the Commander of Joint Task Force Bravo, forward deployed in Honduras and reports directly to the US SOUTHCOM Commander. During his time at JTF Bravo, COL Gventer has overseen the deployment and aid to Haiti following the August 2021 earthquake, overseen and participated in several HA/DR Table Top Exercises in the Central American region and established exercises building trust and relationships with governmental agencies, host nation militaries and other aid organizations. Colonel Gventer is a Distinguished Graduate of the U.S. Army War College Class of ’19 and member of the Advanced Strategic Art Program. His awards include the Bronze Star with V - “Valor” Device, the Bronze Star with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, the Purple Heart with one Oak Leaf Cluster and others.
Barry Koperberg (Panel Chair)
General Manager
Wings For Aid

Barry Koperberg is Founder and General Manager of Wings For Aid, living out his passion to bridge gaps between available knowledge and needs in the field. He is also a seasoned and skilled business consultant, with a specialisation in public/private partnerships and cooperations. He developed successful concepts and social ventures in technology and education. Wings For Aid is at the brink of introducing the MiniFreighter cargo drone to the market, a technology platform that is tailored to the needs of the humanitarian sector and makes us re-think the concept of airdrops. Motto: reaching people anywhere.
Nadia Ortega
Disaster Risk Management Senior Officer
IFRC - International Federation of Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies

Nadia Ortega is currently the Disaster Risk Management, Senior Officer a.i. Regional Programme Coordinator Climate and Resilience at IFRC. In January 2020, Nadia joined America’s Regional Office of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, coordinating at regional level programme initiatives regarding Disaster Risk Reduction, Resilience and Climate Change, as well as supporting emergency response operations. She has a degree in Financial Engineering from Latina University of Panama, and an Erasmus Mundus Joint Master in Sustainable Territorial Development (STEDE) from the Universities of Padova, KU Leuven and Paris I Pantheon-Sorbonne. Before joining the IFRC, Nadia had the opportunity to collaborate with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, World Food Programme (WFP), ECPAT International and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).
Rossella Bottone
Head of Regional Assessment & Monitoring Team
WFP - World Food Programme

Rossella Bottone is a Vulnerability Analysis Advisor for the UN World Food Programme. Currently based in the Panama Regional office, she has more than 15 years of experience in the Humanitarian sector and she is an expert in emergency food security assessments, vulnerability surveys, and data analysis in support of early warning and emergency preparedness. She has worked in Nepal, Guatemala, Haiti, Senegal, DRC, Italy, and has conducted needs assessments for WFP in more than 20 countries in Latin America and Africa. Rossella holds a Master Degree in International Cooperation from the University of Pavia (Italy) and is currently pursuing a Master in Humanitarian Action from SOAS (University of London). Originally from Napoili (Italy), Rossella is married and has four children, she is passionate about her job, travelling and cooking. She thinks that food, as love, brings people together and she strives for a world where the right to food is guaranteed even in times of crises.
Yasmin Delgado
Director - Emergency Operations Center (COE)
SINAPROC Panama - National Civil Protection System

With nearly 17 years of experience in Disasters and Emergencies, Yasmin is currently the Director of the National Emergency Operations Center at SINARPOC. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Humanities from the University of Panama. She also teaches on Incident Command System, Damage Assessment and Needs Analysis, Development of Simulations and Drills, among others. Yasmin belongs to the Panama USAR Team in her as Operational Planner. She has represented the country in international exercises such as FAHUM and SIMEX. She has also coordinated emergencies such as Hurricane OTTO in 2017 and more recently in 2020 during Hurricane ETA and IOTA. Yasmin participated in several international Earthquakes missions, in particularly to help fellow countries of Ecuador and Mexico. She also coordinates in sending humanitarian assistance to several countries such as Haiti, Guatemala, Puerto Rico, Cuba and Trinidad and Tobago.
Jorge E. Zequeira (Panel Chair)
Regional Civil Military & Security Coordinator
IFRC - International Federation of Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies

Mr. Jorge Zequeira has an academic background in Justice, Criminal Justice, Spanish and Business Administration. He has been working for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) for 11 years. His current roles at IFRC are Regional Security Coordinator, Regional Civil Military Relations (CMR) Coordinator, Acting-Head of Office of Program Coordination and Cooperation in Colombia and Regional Business Continuity Plans Team Coordinator. In the past he had the opportunity to perform roles within the Regional Office as IFRC Americas Acting Deputy Director, Liaison for the Northern Cluster Countries (USA, Canada, and Mexico), Head of the Pan American Disaster Response Unit (PADRU), among others. In the humanitarian field, he has also been Operational Consultant of the Regional Centre for Humanitarian Assistance (CLRAH) for the Panamanian Government. Mr. Zequeira retired honorably from the U.S. Army as Lieutenant Colonel in 2010 having served in high-level missions in Germany, Panama, Venezuela, Guatemala, United States, in areas such as logistics, Deputy Military attaché in the Venezuelan Embassy of the USA, Policy and Strategy, among others. Mr. Zequeira has also been distinguished in Learning aspects by being teacher at Universities such as University Louisville in Panama, Universidad de Alta Direccion, Quality Leadership University, United States Military Academy at West Point, among others.
COL J. Frank Melgarejo
Chief Stabilization and Humanitarian Assistance Division
SOUTHCOM - U.S. Southern Command

J. Frank Melgarejo Jr. is currently the Chief of the Theater Civil Affairs Planning Team South at United States Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM) Headquarters in Doral, Florida. His duties include but are not limited to advising the Command on the conduct of Civil Affairs (CA) Operations and DoD Humanitarian Assistance in Latin America & the Caribbean. He is also the lead for the Command’s Foreign Liaison Officers Program. Colonel Jose F. Melgarejo Jr. is a native of Hialeah, Florida. He was commissioned through the ROTC program in 1993 from the University of Miami, Coral Gables, Florida where he holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a Master of Arts degree in International Studies (2004). COL Melgarejo is a graduate of the U.S. Army War College where he earned a master’s degree in Strategic Studies in 2016. His recent military assignments include Civil Affairs Deputy Branch Chief, United States Southern Command, Doral, Florida; Battalion Commander, United States Army Recruiting Battalion – Miami; Director of Operations (J3) for Joint Task Force- Bravo in Comayagua, Republic of Honduras; United States Army South Liaison Officer to USSOUTHCOM; and Chief of the Office of Security Cooperation in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. COL Melgarejo’s awards and decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Bronze Star Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal (2OLC), Meritorious Service Medal (4OLC), Joint Service Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal (3OLC), Joint Service Achievement Medal, Army Achievement Medal (2OLC), Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Korean Defense Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, US Army Parachutist Badge and US Army Recruiting Badge.
Jeannette Fernandez
DRR & Recovery Advisor for LAC
UNDP - UN Development Programme

Jeannette is currently the LAC regional advisor for DRR and Recovery, based at the UNDP Regional Hub in Panama. Jeannette holds a degree in Civil Engineering, with specialized training on Seismology and Earthquake Engineering in Japan. In 2002 she was awarded a Masters Degree in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Between 2014 and 2019, Jeannette worked as Recovery Specialist for the UNDP’s Bureau for Programme and Policy Support, and its Climate and Disaster Team, based in New York. Her main task was the implementation of the Post Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) roll-out project, funded by the EU and UNDP, including through coordination with the UN Agencies and the WB/GFDRR. This engagement has allowed her to be part of the PDNA global expert team and get engaged in the formulation of Post Disaster Recovery Frameworks to support recovery planning and implementation. Jeannette has led the formulation of actual PDNAs in Africa (Angola, Mozambique, Djibouti), and Latin America and the Caribbean (Ecuador, Guatemala, Dominica, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Haiti), most recently in Ecuador and the Dominican Republic on the COVID-19 needs assessment and in El Salvador with the dual impact of COVID19 and Tropical Storm Amanda and Cristobal.
Mariel Fonteyn (virtual)
Associate Director - Climate & Disaster Resilience

Maria Jimena Pantoja
Head of International Cooperation
UNGRD - National Unit for Disaster Risk Management; Colombia

María Jimena, is currently the Coordinator of the International Cooperation Group of the National Unit for Disaster Risk Management (UNGRD), with a Bachelor Degree in International Relations from Universidad del Rosario in Bogotá, with a major in Theology and Religion. She also has a Postgraduate Studies in Environmental Management and Disaster Risk Management from Universidad Sergio Arboleda. Maria Jimena has more than 5 years of experience in post conflict management, environmental management and sustainable development. She has worked as an expert in international cooperation in disaster risk management at the UNGRD from 2019.
Virginie Bohl (virtual)

Ms. Virginie Bohl is a senior international expert in devising and implementing strategies to optimize the cross-border movement of humanitarian relief aid. She worked for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) for 20 years and has experience in coordination, preparedness, response, information management and capacity building support. Currently, she is the Coordinator of the inter-agency IMPACCT Working Group that she created in 2017. This group represents a network of strategic partners, such as the World Customs Organization, UNCTAD, ITU, IFRC, MSF, Save the Children, IHC in Dubai, World Bank, Help Logistics and OCHA. The mission of IMPACCT aims for countries and humanitarian organizations to be comprehensively prepared to effectively manage customs clearance and importation processes for disaster and crisis relief goods and equipment. To achieve its mission, partners come together to develop collective and coordinated approaches and tools to support national coordination mechanisms related to customs and importation processes for disaster relief goods and equipment.
Gery Warner, Owner & CEO and Suzanne Warner, Sales Goddess


Guillermo Coronado (Panel Chair)
Senior Sales Director - Mexico & Central America
SES Americom, Inc

Guillermo has a huge experience on satellite communications business achievement high-level projects in the Americas, specialized on Video and Network solutions. Proven ability to manage a wide range of technically complex projects in different industry applications. International business practices and the ability to lead negotiations in diverse cultures.
David Meltzer (virtual)
Secretary General

David Meltzer has 30 years of experience in the satellite and humanitarian industries. Mr. Meltzer currently leads GVF which is the largest global trade association for the commercial satellite industry. As GVF’s Secretary General, he leads advocacy efforts on behalf of the industry with national and international regulators while providing members with benefits in areas such as online and classroom training, organizing industry conferences, and leading industry working group. Prior to GVF, Mr. Meltzer served for thirteen years at the American Red Cross leading its international disaster relief and development activities and served as the American Red Cross’ General Counsel for over five years. Mr. Meltzer also served as Intelsat’s General Counsel and Executive Vice President for Regulatory Affairs during a sixteen-year career at Intelsat.
Cdr. Granvile Adderley (virtual)
Commanding Officer - Crisis Risk Management Unit / Health & Safety Officer / Fire & Safety Unit
Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF)

Commander Granville Adderley has given exceptional and exemplary service to the Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF) since his enlistment in January 1985. He served onboard HMBS Inagua and Eleuthera initially, before accepting an appointment as Senior Upper Yardmen making the transition from Marine to Naval Officer in November 1999. He completed his Naval Officer training at the Britannia Royal Naval College, Dartmouth, England receiving his commission in 2002. More than 36 years of professional military career demonstrating strong dynamic leadership excelling in planning and forecasting, setting objectives and determining courses of action to meet organizational goals and overall objectives. Developing and implementing highly successful strategic plans (short and long term). As part of the Senior Management team, he assisted in developing a Hurricane Disaster and Response Plan for the Defence Force. Operationally, he served as Commanding Officer of HMBS Rolly Gray, HMBS Inagua, and HMBS P-48 and Navigation Officer of HMBS Fort Montague. He is the currently the Commanding Officer of the Crisis Risk Management Unit, Health and Safety Officer (OSHA) and is the newly appointed CO of the Fire and Safety Unit.
Julián Alberto García Roman
Sub COE Director
COE - Emergency Operations Center; Dominican Republic

Julián Alberto García Román was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic on April 17, 1972. He joined the Civil Defense of the Dominican Republic at just 17 years of age, occupying several important positions from Director of the Municipality Santo Domingo West, to being the National Head of Operations. In 2006, by Presidential decree, he was promoted to Deputy Director and in charge of the Communications Division of the Emergency Operations Center (COE) of the Dominican Republic, which he currently holds today. Mr. Garcia Roman has a Diploma in Risk Management, in Mega Security events, and is an instructor in training for CPI and IDI instructors, and in evaluation of damages, hazardous materials, telecommunications in emergencies, and Safe airports. Mr. García Roman has also participated in several humanitarian allied force exercises with the Southern Command of the United States. He is also a member of the Disaster Assessment and Coordination team (UNDAC) of the United Nations.
Rogerio Mobilia
Deputy Head of Regional Office for Latin America & the Caribbean (ROLAC)
OCHA - UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Appointed as Deputy Head of Office of OCHA ROLAC in 2019, after heading the Information Services Unit since 2007. Mr. Silva also led the Regional Office during 2020 until July 2021 during the pandemic of COVID-19. With studies in System Technology Engineering, Mr. Silva counts with more than 25 years of experience on disasters management with the United Nations as an international servant and other years on private sector. Has worked extensively in areas of automatization, communication, information management and coordination responses during complex crisis or emergencies resulting from natural disasters. Most recently, he has led OCHA and other international specialized teams supporting emergency responses in Americas and the Caribbean and has dedicated his humanitarian life working for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs also in Africa, Asia.
Alberto Sierra
Executive Director
CLRAH - Regional Logistics Center for Humanitarian Assistance; Panama

Mr. Sierra has a bachelor´s degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Banking and Finances from the Latina University of Panamá. He also has a Masters´ degree in Maritime Business Management in Logistics and Transportation. He has occupied management positions in renowned national as well as international companies. At present, Mr. Sierra is the Executive Director at the Regional Logistics Center for Humanitarian Assistance, where he coordinates actions to strengthen humanitarian logistics operations of the National Civic Protection System of Panama (SINAPROC), the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), and the United Nations Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD), all located within the Center.
Ayack Montalván (virtual)
Regional Supply Chain Manager for Latin America & Caribbean
Save the Children

Ayack's professional career began with his studies in Business Administration, with an emphasis on finance and management in Nicaragua. He completed his master's degree in business administration and public policy at the University of Tsukuba, Japan, a university to which he had the opportunity to gain a scholarship. Ayack lived in Japan for 5 years (2006-2011) completing his master's degree and working in an American University, before returning to Nicaragua in 2011. Regarding his expertise in Logistics, Ayack has extensive experience in this area. From 2011 to 2012 he worked at Casa Pellas S.A, Toyota's spare parts company and in 2012 he started working at the renowned NGO, Action Against Hunger until the beginning of 2019, with experience in different emergencies such as Lebanon, Iraq, Guatemala among others. Since May 2019, Ayack has held the position of Regional Supply Manager LAC at Save the Children.
Francisco Quesada
UNHRD Manager
UNHRD - UN Humanitarian Response Depot / WFP

Mr. Francisco Quesada has a degree in Law and Mater in International Cooperation for Development. Since December 2015, he has served as Manager of the UNHRD Panama, most recently completing a 5 month mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo supporting WHO during the ebola outbreak (Dec 2018 - May 2019). Previously, Mr. Quesada has worked as Advisor of the Cabinet of the Secretary General of International Development in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Spain; Advisor on International Development of the Popular Party Group at the Spanish Parliament; Director of the NGO Kivuvu; Project Manager and expatriate in Humanismo y Democracia Foundation; Project and Logistics Manager in the NGO Action Against Hunger, Volunteer in NGO Manos Unidas; Independent Consultant in the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro; Editor Assistant in the newsletter Eurosur in Brussels; Assistant at the Information and Communication Department in IBF in Brussels; and Internship at Directorate General X - Multimedia Library at the European Commission in Brussels.
Joscha Kremers (virtual)
Chief - Aviation Transportation & Logistics Section (ATLS)
UNPD - UN Procurement Division

Joscha Kremers is Chief of the Aviation Transportation & Logistics Section at the United Nations Procurement Division in New York (UNHQ), overseeing the UN Secretariat’s acquisition of air, sea and land transportation requirements, including the procurement of Vehicles. After working in various administrative functions, particularly logistics in the private sector in Germany, he joined the United Nations in 2006. Mr. Kremers has worked in several areas of Procurement, including Engineering, Field Supply items, Logistics and Aviation, providing the worldwide peacekeeping operations, with essential infrastructure. His Section has been driving the reform in the area of long-term air charter, attracting more air operators to UN business opportunities. A posting at the Regional Procurement Office in Uganda complement his UN experience.