Executive Director

Since joining Refugee Transitions in 2001, Laura has shown dynamic, visionary leadership through expanding the agency’s scope and power to transform lives. She has grown Refugee Transitions from a two-office, home-tutoring agency serving 100 newcomers in San Francisco to a multi-site agency with nearly 2,000 students in San Francisco, Alameda, and Santa Clara counties.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Community Navigator

Maria joined Refugee Transitions in January 2017. She was born in Guatemala and speaks Mam and Spanish. She works at Oakland Unified School District. Maria provides language translation and interpretation services to RT’s Mam-speaking students and families in Oakland.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Wellness Case Worker

Nahid joined RT in June 2018. She was born in Afghanistan. She speaks Dari, Farsi, and some Pashto. As an RT Wellness Case Worker, she partners with IRC Health and Wellness team to conduct workshops, training, and in-person conversation with our Women’s Initiative program participants. She also encourages the women to be physically and mentally healthy.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Caretaker

Maria joined RT in November of 2018. She was born in Michoacan, Mexico and speaks Spanish and English. At the age of 7, Maria moved to Oakland, CA. She attended Fremont high school. Maria is very active in her community.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Education Programs Associate

Amanda Geldert joined RT in June 2017 as a college intern and is back full time as of June 2018. She was born in San Jose California and speaks Spanish and English. As an intern she spent six months immersed in all things RT across the 3 offices. She later returned to UCSC to complete her B.A in Community Studies & Spanish Studies (linguistics concentration).

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Program and Volunteer Manager

Nicole joined Refugee Transitions in August of 2011 to fill the position of Volunteer and Program Coordinator. She recruits and trains the agency's many volunteer tutors. Nicole was introduced to the international humanitarian sphere while volunteering at an orphanage in Bulgaria, where she taught ESL and coordinated enrichment activities.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Senior Development and Communications Coordinator

Julia joined RT in 2014 as the agency's Development and Impact Coordinator. She coordinates development projects, including the annual fundraising event and end-of-year appeals. She works on grant proposals and funder reports as a content coordinator, writer, and editor. Julia oversees the agency's impact data.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Development and Program Associate

Jyoti immigrated to the U.S. in 2009 from Nepal as a Bhutanese Refugee. She went to Oakland International High School and was a Peer Tutor in RT's after-school tutoring. After graduating from OIHS, she continued to join forces with RT as an Alumni Tutor and Intern. She graduated in May 2016 from San Francisco State University with a B.S. degree in Business Management.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Women’s Initiative Consultant

Tenley Harrison joined Refugee Transitions as a tutor in Fall 2001. She has since served on the Board of Directors, as Board Chair, Interim Executive Director (2x), Program and Data Coordinator, grant writer, and instructor. She currently coordinates the Women's Initiative, an education program for both mothers and their children.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Childcare and Education Intern

Fathiya joined RT in October 2018. She was born in Yemen, and speaks Arabic and English. She came to United States in 2004 with her family. Fathiya went to middle school in Oakland CA, and attended Oakland Technical High School.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Sr. San Francisco Program Coordinator

Grace Lau, an immigrant from Hong Kong, began working with Refugee Transitions as a Program Coordinator in September 2008. She works primarily with the Asian Pacific Islander community in San Francisco and to this end, contributes her intimate knowledge of China, its culture, and the challenges immigrants face resettling in the U.S. Grace supports families enrolled in Refugee Transitions’ home-based tutoring and mentoring programs, and supports our school-based program at San Francisco International High School.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Adult English Language Instructor

Cara joined Refugee Transitions in August of 2019 as an Adult English Language Instructor at Oakland International High School. She is the first in her family to complete college. She holds an undergraduate degree and masters in English and an ESL Certificate from California State East Bay in Hayward, CA. Additionally, Cara earned a Clad Teaching Credential from San Francisco State University and a California administrative Credential in Organizational Leadership from California State East Bay college.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Senior Family Resource Coordinator

Zar Ni Maung began at Refugee Transitions in March 2008 as the agency's Family Advocate. Zar Ni focuses primarily on supporting volunteers and newly arrived refugee families from Burma, linking them to services and providing tutoring for youth. Zar Ni grew up in Rangoon, the former capital of Burma. As a university student, he was active in the student democracy movement.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Early Childcare and Education Intern

Masuma Mohammadi joined RT in May 2018. She is from Bamyan, Afghanistan, and her native language is Dari. After graduating from high school, she joined Baran Institute of Health Science in Kabul, Afghanistan. She studied there for 2 years and received Health Science Lab Technician Certificate. She worked for 5 years as a teacher at Farhang elementary school. For a year she volunteered at Think College Now School’s kindergarten class.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

RT Intern: Teacher Assistant and Alumni Tutor

Shaheen joined Refugee Transitions in February 2016. He was born in Afghanistan and speaks Dari, Pashto and some Arabic. He graduated from Oakland International High School (OIHS). He has an associate’s degree in Mathematics from Laney College, and he is currently attending California State University, East Bay.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Volunteer and Academic Support Coordinator

Ricardo joined RT in October 2018 as the After-School Program Coordinator at San Francisco International High School. He was born in the United States but was raised in a bilingual household by parents who immigrated from Mexico. He speaks both Spanish and English fluently. At San Francisco International High School, he provides daytime classroom support for students and teachers and helps organize special events held in the school.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Wellness Case Worker
Mohammad joined Refugee Transitions on November 2018 as a Wellness Case Worker. He was born in Afghanistan and speaks Dari, Pashto, and Arabic. As an RT wellness Case Worker, he partners with IRC Health and Wellness team to develop and conduct psycho-education workshops and conduct health screenings. In addition, he provides case management and referrals support to RT clients.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Associate Education Manager and Instructor

Kajal joined Refugee Transitions in April 2019 to fill the position of Adult English Language Instructor at Oakland International High School (OIHS). Today, Kajal works as an Associate Education Manager and Instructor. Along with overseeing and monitoring part of the agency’s youth programs and Behavioral Health Prevention & Early Intervention programs, she also teaches Refugee Transitions’ Vocational English and Citizenship classes at Harbor House.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Social Adjustment Counselor

Sandra joined RT in June 2016. She is the first generation in her family to attend college. She received a B.A. in Sociology & Education from UC Santa Cruz. After working with a high population of refugees and asylees at Catholic Charities of the East Bay, she grew fervor to guide and help newly arrived and low-income families. It quickly became apparent that Sandra not only shared a deep passion for helping refugees, but also cared deeply for the community that she served.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand

Adult Literacy Instructor

Kalina Vitela joined RT in August 2019. She was born in the U.S and speaks Spanish and English fluently. She is an Adult Literacy Instructor at RT’s class at Good Samaritan Family Resource Center in San Francisco. Kalina graduated from San Francisco State University and also works with San Francisco Unified School District as a substitute teacher. She is passionate about providing equitable education to all, and through RT, she plans to connect with and aid families new to the U.S.

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AuthorAndrew Bogrand