Mary St. John has been the Durham Program Director since the Durham CWS Immigration and Refugee Program office opened in January 2009. She has served in refugee resettlement for more than 10 years. Prior to that, she worked as a consultant to ministries of health and education in Africa and Asia. Mary holds a B.A. in Economics and an M.S. in Computer Science. She taught English in the Peace Corps in Morocco, and has also lived in Thailand and the Caribbean. Mary speaks French and intermediate Persian. She and her husband live in Durham.
Kelly Cohen-Mazurowski has been the Community Resource Coordinator for CWS since June of 2012. Kelly works to recruit and mentor volunteers, to connect congregations and community groups with new arrivals, to create fundraising and awareness events, and to manage our web presence. Kelly graduated with a BA from Wheaton College, IL and a Master of Divinity from Duke Divinity School. She speaks French and a little Polish and has studied and worked abroad in Uganda, Kenya, and South Africa. She lives with her husband in Durham.
Angel Blu has been a Refugee Case Manager for CWS since 2008. She speaks Karen and Burmese. Before coming to the United States as a refugee in 1998, Angel was a medic and a medical secretary at Dr. Cynthia Maung’s Mae Tao Clinic on the Thai-Burma border. Angel was resettled to Las Vegas, NV with her parents and siblings and now lives in Chapel Hill with her husband and three children.
After serving with CWS as an AmeriCorps Member in 2011-2012, Sana Ansari joined our staff as a Refugee Case Manager in August 2012. She is a recent graduate from UNC-Chapel Hill and holds a BA in Public Policy. Sana is passionate about women’s rights and health policy, and she spent a summer working at a microfinance institution in Bangladesh. She enjoys good food, good company, and learning new languages. Sana speaks Arabic, Hindi/Urdu, and Spanish and currently lives in Carrboro.
Rosy Gautam has been part of the CWS Durham team since Feb 2012. With over 5 years of experience working for a non-profit organization based out of Toronto, Rosy enjoys working as a Refugee Case Manager for CWS. She was born in Nepal, spent most of her teenage years in Toronto and she currently lives in Raleigh with her husband. Rosy is fluent in English and Nepali. Her passion for people and her birth place Nepal is the main reason she takes pleasure in assisting clients of CWS.
Gideon Thuam began working as a Refugee Case Manager for CWS in July, 2012. Prior to that, he worked as an office coordinator for Cross Cultural Resources and has also worked as a Burmese and Chin interpreter. Since 2009, he has been leading a Burmese church as a Volunteer Pastor and has voluntarily helped many refugees resettle in Durham. He has a Bachelor of Theology degree from India and is currently enrolled as a part-time student at Durham Tech. Gideon was resettled in Durham and continues to live here along with his mother and sister. He is very proud of working with CWS as a case manger and is delighted to help any refugee.
Lacey Hendrix began working as an Employment Specialist at CWS in January 2013. Her first interaction with refugee populations was when living abroad in Egypt teaching English to displaced Iraqi, Sudanese, Palestinian, and Eritrean refugees. Before joining CWS she served as the Volunteer Coordinator for World Relief and as an Americorps Member for CWS in 2010. Lacey now lives in Wake Forest with her husband and two children.
Nasseer Naji started working as a Refugee Case Manager at CWS in February 2013. Before coming to CWS his first job in the US was as a Cargo Agent at American Airlines. In Iraq he worked for seven years as a Material Control Specialist for Kellogg Brown and Root, a contractor for the US Department of Defense. Nasseer has a BA in Agricultural Science from Baghdad University. He lives in Durham and speaks both Arabic and English.
Elgiva Wood became the first ESL Instructor on staff at the CWS-RDU office in July, 2012. She has a certificate in ESL Teaching from Duke University and is currently working toward a Master’s in English with a concentration in TESOL at ECU. Previously, she taught at Durham Literacy Center and Durham Tech. Born in the UK, she relocated to the States in 1998 and now lives in Raleigh with her husband and three children. She learned French and German in school.
Ellen Andrews is the Employment Services Coordinator with the CWS Durham Office. She has been working in refugee employment services with CWS since September of 2009 and works on both the Matching Grant and RAP employment programs. Ellen holds a BA in Psychology with a minor in Biology from UNC-Chapel Hill. She lives in Carrboro.
Gabriela Rife has been a part-time Employment Specialist since April 2010; before that she worked as a Refugee Case Manager. Before coming to CWS, she worked with Habitat for Humanity for 9 years as a construction manager and continues to lead Global Village trips. She enjoys volunteering and has tutored English both in Laos and in Orange County schools, she’s also washed elephants in Thailand and donkeys in Spain. Gabriela is currently living in Carrboro. She speaks Spanish.
Mandy Maring began working as an Employment Specialist for CWS in March 2012. Prior to that she worked in human resources and staffing in Madison, WI. Mandy holds a BA degree in both Psychology and Human Development with minors in French and Political Science. She has studied and lived in Senegal and New Zealand. She enjoys volunteering and has taught ESL in Cedar Rapids, IA and Orange County, NC. Mandy is currently living in Carrboro.
Rebecca Schaeffer transitioned to CWS Immigration Services Coordinator in March 2012. Prior to that, Rebecca served as an Employment Specialist for the CWS Durham office beginning in June 2010. Before joining CWS, Rebecca worked for the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration in Washington, DC. Rebecca holds a BA in International Relations with a minor in Middle Eastern Studies. She speaks French and Arabic, and has lived and studied abroad in England, France, Jordan, and India. Rebecca lives in Durham with her husband.