Fathi Zabaar (President)
Elly 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.
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.
Christen holds a Master of International Affairs degree with a concentration in Human Rights from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs. Over the past decade, she has worked to advance human rights and gender justice in partnership with a diverse range of civil society organizations and human rights defenders across the Americas, Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Europe. Most recently, Christen spent nearly seven years leading the International Human Rights Funders Group’s Research and Policy program, where she managed a global research initiative to map and analyze the landscape of human rights funding and supported donor efforts to address closing space for civil society. She has also worked with Prospera - International Network of Women’s Funds, EarthRights International, Safe Horizon’s Anti-Trafficking Program, and Global Youth Connect, among others. She is currently an independent consultant focused on human rights and gender. Christen is also a volunteer with Advocates Abroad, helping to connect asylum seekers in Europe and the Middle East with free legal and non-legal assistance.
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.
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 in various countries 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.
Marianne works currently at Amnesty International where she is the campaigner for HRDs in the Americas. She’s based in Mexico City. Between 2008 and 2015 she worked with PBI Mexico’s project. From volunteer into the field to advocacy coordinator in Europe, she went through several positions within the organization. She holds an LLM degree from Essex University.