Linda Slade, Founder/CEO
Linda Slade has organized and led teams on numerous service projects around the world. She has worked with organizations such as the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR); Habitat for Humanity and International Mother Earth Foundation. She has participated in service projects in Gambia, Israel, India, S. Africa, S. America, the Philippines and Peru as well as working as a volunteer in Mississippi to rebuild homes after Hurricane Katrina. She works as a counselor and has participated in volunteer programs in some of the US State Prisons with another nonprofit group called ‘Freedom to Choose’ and volunteers regularly with ‘The Wildlife Waystation’ spending her free days nurturing the tigers on enrichment programs. Linda holds a Bachelors in Education from Cambridge University; a Masters in Voice and Communication from The Central School of Speech and Drama/London University and a Masters Degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica with an emphasize in Conscious Health and Healing.
Marjan Tavakkolian, VP Marketing and Public Relations
Marjan studied finance and worked at T. Rowe Price before she decided to stay at home and raise her kids. During this time, she was involved with many charities, fundraisers and volunteer projects in Orange County. Marjan speaks four languages, teaches Kundalini Yoga in Laguna Beach, loves to travel the world and connect with people from all cultures and is passionate about giving back, serving her community and spreading joy and hope. She holds a Masters in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica.
Paul Hartel, Treasurer
Paul has worked as development executive for nonprofits, helping them to achieve their financial needs and goals. A graduate of St. John’s College, Annapolis, he helped The Walnut Street Theatre, Philadelphia, become one of the most financially sound regional theatres in the United States, and continued this work with the nonprofit Philadelphia Youth Orchestra. In Los Angeles, Paul participates in the work of North Valley Caring Services and other nonprofit care-giving organizations. Paul is also a licensed practitioner of Religious Science and a meditation teacher who has taught the practice of mindfulness for almost twenty years. He leads a weekly meditation group in Los Angeles and serves clients by offering spiritual counseling and prayer.
Mandy Muenzer, Director of Fundraising
Mandy is an actor, dancer and certified fitness instructor from Los Angeles. She graduated from UCLA with a B.A. in World Arts and Cultures and is currently completing an M.A. in Spiritual Psychology at the University of Santa Monica. She has been involved with numerous international humanitarian trips to Morocco, Malawi, South Africa, Cuba, Mexico, among others, and most recently, to Peru with IMEF. On these trips, she enjoys the friendships she creates with the local people and the journey of immersing herself in new cultural traditions. “Every culture has impacted me and changed me in a beautiful way,” says Mandy. She particularly loves IMEF because of its open-minded spiritual perspective and its grassroots, community-centered approach to service. She says, “I can’t wait to go on my next trip!”
Kevin McLaughlin, Media Director
Kevin is a Los Angeles based Director of Photography / Camera Operator and Editor with a passion for creative storytelling. He’s worked in TV / film production for 15 years; helped launch Emmy Award-winning Current TV, and directed and shot short format documentaries for the network. Kevin’s adventurous spirit has led him to remote villages in Vietnam; and snowboarding in the Colorado backcountry to capture a compelling story that had always inspired him. He is currently shooting content for NFL Network, AXS TV, ESPN, Red Bull and always ready for his next challenging project and adventure.
Merry Parrish, Grant and Sponsorship
Merry is a Business System Consultant specializing in the development, implementation, remediation and management of quality and compliance systems in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. She has spent over 20 years assisting small and large companies—domestic and international—to meet and exceed regulatory requirements and industry standards. Merry has an excellent track record of helping companies increase their quality and compliance performance to meet customer and client needs. A Transformational Life Coach, Merry loves being of service by helping and inspiring people and businesses to manifest their goals. She enjoys traveling the world learning about and engaging with other cultures.
Merry holds a B.S. in Biochemistry and an M.A. in Spiritual Psychology with an emphasis in Conscious Health and Healing.
Aly Amaut Ponce de Leon, Peruvian Tour Leader
A native of Cusco, Aly has worked for 8 years in the travel and tourism industry. As an official tour guide he has worked throughout Peru. He is extremely enthusiastic and knowledgeable about his Inca heritage and is a skilled guide and storyteller. In 2010, Aly won the Leap local competition for outstanding local guide, despite stiff competition from other guides from around the globe. To Aly, the Andean religion, worldview and ancestral beliefs are not just part of his heritage, but an important part of his daily life. He is passionate about sharing Andean culture with visitors. For further information about Aly’s tours of Peru, visit: www.motherearthtours.com
Deborah McFarlane, Accountant
Deborah provides bookkeeping services for the full accounting cycle, including A/P, A/R Payroll, account reconciliation and all government remittances and is well-versed in QuickBooks and Simply Accounting. She is a Certified Pro Adviser for QuickBooks Online. She provides bookkeeping services to a variety of clients in different industries and has worked in public accounting for many years. When she is not juggling various bookkeeping requests, she loves to spend time with her two grandchildren. And, she loves to fly fish!
Emily Cervini (Secretary), Heather Lee (Legal Advisor), Fandra Chang (Media)