Fathi Zabaar (President) 

Fathi Zabaar is a Tunisian jurist and human rights advocate. He is a Program Director with the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience. Fathi has been running programs at global and regional levels notably in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and West Africa in the fields of human rights and transitional justice. He works with community based organizations providing training and technical assistance on advocacy, strategy and conflict resolution. Fathi holds a law degree and a Master’s Degree in Conflict Transformation. Fathi currently lives and works in New York City.

Erika Zarate (Vice-President)

Erika holds a Masters of Science in Capacity Development & Adult Education and has over 15 years of experience working on human rights and environmental projects across Latin America, as well as Canada and Spain. She currently works as a consultant in the areas of community engagement, transformative education, decision making and capacity building for NGOs and educational institutions. Erika is member and co-founder of the Mas Franch Centre for Social and Ecological Change in northern Spain, and is member of the European Evaluation Society and the International Development Evaluation Association.

Ellen Kaas (Treasurer)

Elly is a chartered accountant and has been providing accounting, consulting and auditing services to the charitable sector since 1994. As well as her wealth of financial expertise, Elly brings a passion for social justice, nonviolence and international development to PBI. Her international experience includes studying and volunteering in Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Zambia.  In addition to her work in private practice, she is currently on the Board of the Catherine Donnelly Foundation, a Canadian NGO supporting projects promoting positive social change and supporting the marginalised. 

Shane Guthrie (Secretary)

Shane has 20 years of practice in the Australian peace movement and is currently studying for a Master of Development Studies. He has field experience with PBI in Indonesia, and he volunteered on the Indonesia Project Committee and in the Australian Country Group. He then worked with human rights organisations in Jakarta on capacity building and communication strategies. He has also worked as a policy advisor to senators in Australia. His skills include nonviolent campaigning, training for empowerment and facilitation of consensus decision making.

Denise Cauchi

Denise has a Master’s Degree in International Development. She has over 20 years’ experience in human rights and international development in both volunteering and professional capacities, including two years as a field volunteer with PBI's Colombia project. She is currently the Director (and founder) of Diaspora Action Australia. Denise has been a member of several Boards and is currently on the Executive Committee of the Australian Council for International Development and is a Trustee of Live and Learn Environmental Education. She is a social justice activist at heart.

Sonia Di Mezza

Sonia is a human rights lawyer, with a Master’s degree in International Law. She has over 17 years of professional work experience in the field of human rights in Australia, Pakistan, Lebanon, Sudan and India, and is fluent in French, Spanish, Arabic and Italian as well as her native English. She currently works as the Deputy CEO for an NGO in Canberra, Australia, advocating for the human rights of people with disabilities, older people and people with mental health issues.  As well as being on the PBI board Sonia is also a member of the PBI Legal Committee.

Marianne Bertrand

Marianne works currently as a Campaign and Mobilisation Manager with the International Service for Human Rights in Geneva. Previously, she worked for four years as a campaigner on human rights defenders with Amnesty International in the Americas and then with the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders. Between 2008 and 2015 she worked with PBI Mexico’s project as a field volunteer, Team Coordinator and Advocacy Coordinator. She holds an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the University of Essex and a Masters in International Affairs from Sciences Po.

Marc Bontemps

Marc is a commercial engineer who worked as auditor for PwC Belgium and was lecturer of Cost Accounting at Brussels University. He fulfilled different management functions in development NGO’s such as Oxfam Belgium, Ecolife and Forum Ethibel/Vigeo. In 2010, he co-founded NewB, the new sustainable, ethical cooperative bank in Belgium. In addition to being on PBI’s International Council, Marc is also a member of the Finance and Audit Committee. 



Photos except Marc © 2019 Shane Guthrie