Our People

CPJ is made up of about 40 experts around the world, with headquarters in New York City.

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Jodie Ginsberg
Jodie Ginsberg is the president of the Committee to Protect Journalists. A journalist by profession, Ginsberg joined CPJ in 2022 from Internews Europe, where she was the chief executive officer. Ginsberg began her career as a graduate trainee with Reuters news agency, working as a commodities reporter before taking up a posting as a foreign correspondent in Johannesburg, South Africa, where she focused on the region’s financial sector. She subsequently worked as Reuters’ chief correspondent in Ireland, based in Dublin, and then bureau chief for the U.K. and Ireland. As bureau chief, Ginsberg managed coverage of the 2008 financial crisis, U.K. riots and 2010 general election, as well as overseeing the merger of the Thomson and Reuters U.K. newsrooms. In 2014, Ginsberg was appointed chief executive of London-based freedom of expression group Index on Censorship, which she led until 2020. An internationally respected campaigner on issues of media freedom and freedom of expression, Ginsberg is a regular speaker on journalist safety and issues involving access to information. From 2020 to 2022, she was chief executive of Internews Europe, a media development non-profit, and has served on the boards of the Global Network Initiative and The Trust for the Bureau of Investigative Journalism and as a Council member of IFEX, the international network for freedom of expression organizations. Ginsberg has a BA in English Literature from the University of Cambridge and a postgraduate diploma in newspaper journalism from City, University of London.

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Robert Mahoney
Robert Mahoney is a journalist, author and fighter for press freedom who has been at the forefront of the struggle for press freedom, journalists’ safety, and the right to report since joining the Committee to Protect Journalists in 2005. From 1978 to 2004, Mahoney worked with Reuters news agency in Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. He headed news bureaus in Jerusalem, West Africa, and Germany, and also served as news editor for Europe, Africa, and the Middle East based in London. After a stint as a freelancer and journalism trainer he joined CPJ, where he helped lead the organization and expanded its reporting and advocacy, particularly around the intersection of technology and press freedom. He helped build an Emergencies Response Team to address the growing safety needs of journalists. He became deputy executive director in 2007 and executive director in 2022. He writes on the press and appears in print and media interviews as an expert on media freedom and threats to journalists globally. In 2022 he co-authored with former CPJ executive director Joel Simon The Infodemic, How Censorship and Lies Made the World Sicker and Less Free

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Arlene Getz
Arlene Getz is in charge of CPJ’s editorial team and oversees its news, data and multimedia operations. A writer and editor specializing in politics and international relations, she joined CPJ in 2021 from CNN. Previously, she was as an editor-in-charge at Reuters, where her roles included running Reuters Commentary, managing the Reuters 2016 “American Voter” election magazine and helping to launch the Reuters America news service. Prior to Reuters, Getz was a managing editor at Newsweek Online and editorial director of Newsweek’s worldwide editions, serving as the top editorial executive for publications in Russia, Turkey, Pakistan, Poland, Mexico, Kuwait, South Korea and Japan. She has reported from countries including Saudi Arabia and her native South Africa, where she wrote for Newsweek and Australia’s Sydney Morning Herald. Getz is an adjunct professor at the USC’s Annenberg journalism school; editor of “Secrets from the Cockpit,” (Jonathan Ball Publishers, 2021); a member of the Council of Foreign Relations, a Fulbright Specialist; a former Wolfson Press Fellow at Cambridge University (UK); a two-time recipient of Gatekeeper Fellowships to the Middle East from the International Reporting Project and the winner of several awards for reporting and commentary. She has degrees in journalism and law. Follow her on Twitter @arlenegetz.

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View More View Less Michele Louhisdon
Director of Human Resources
Michele Louhisdon
Michele Louhisdon
Michele Louhisdon joined CPJ in 2021 as director of human resources. She is responsible for strengthening human resources across CPJ and overseeing the organization’s efforts to recruit, engage, develop, and retain talent, with an explicit focus on supporting CPJ’s core commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Louhisdon earned her master’s in media communications and film production from New York University, where she also studied as an undergraduate. She has more than 15 years of experience working in human resources in support of media organizations such as NBC Universal and ABC as well as for not-for-profits.

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View More View Less John Weis
Director of Development and Outreach
John Weis
John Weis
John Weis joined CPJ in April 2004. He directs all fund-raising activities of the organization, both annual support and campaign contributions. He has a long and successful record as a fund-raiser, having most recently served as the deputy director of development at the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights (now Human Rights First). Weis has held fund-raising positions at WNYC Radio, the New York Public Library, and the University of Pennsylvania. He has a B.S. in Commerce from Rider University.

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Lucy Westcott
Lucy Westcott became director of CPJ’s Emergencies Department in October 2021. She oversees CPJ’s assistance and safety work worldwide. Westcott joined CPJ in 2018 as the James W. Foley Fellow. During her fellowship, she focused on safety issues for women journalists in non-hostile environments and assisted with the creation of safety resources for journalists globally. In 2021, she played a prominent role in CPJ’s response to the Afghan crisis, including helping Afghan journalists and their families evacuated to Qatar. Prior to joining CPJ, Westcott was a staff writer for Newsweek, where she covered gender and immigration. She has reported for outlets including The Intercept, Bustle, The Atlantic, and Women Under Siege, and was a United Nations correspondent for the Inter Press Service. As a fellow with the International Reporting Project in 2016, Westcott wrote about gender and development in South Africa and Lesotho. She has reported from Egypt, Jordan, Cameroon, and the U.S. She has a master’s in multi-platform journalism from the University of Maryland, College Park, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Sussex in the United Kingdom.

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Carlos Martinez de la Serna
Carlos Martinez de la Serna joined CPJ as program director in 2018. Prior to CPJ, he worked as a reporter and digital journalist in the U.S., Spain, and Japan, covering issues including current affairs, biomedical research, and North Korea’s nuclear program. He is a founding member of the mapping startup Carto, co-founder of the nonprofit organization porCausa, and a former director of digital innovation at Univision News. Martinez de la Serna is a research fellow at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University and a former John S. Knight fellow at Stanford University.

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View More View Less Gypsy Guillén Kaiser
ADVOCACY AND COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR
Gypsy Guillén Kaiser
Gypsy Guillén Kaiser
Gypsy Guillén Kaiser joined the Committee to Protect Journalists as advocacy and communications director in 2021. A specialist in advancing structural change to ensure freedom of the press, defend human rights, and secure social and economic justice, Guillén Kaiser has worked nearly two decades with international non-governmental organizations and as a journalist. She has participated in missions to more than a dozen countries, including Argentina, Costa Rica, Egypt, India, Peru, Singapore and South Africa. Most recently, she led strategic outreach to promote progressive family policies and to propel the Women, Peace and Security agenda at UN Women. Previously, she served as director of communications at the International Women’s Health Coalition and at Eisenhower Fellowships, after fighting corruption as the media and public relations manager at Transparency International’s secretariat in Berlin. She served on the boards of the Human Impacts Institute and Friends of Transparency International. Guillén Kaiser returned to CPJ after heading the organization’s advocacy and communications department from 2010 to 2013. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from New York University and a master’s degree in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. A native of the Dominican Republic who grew up in New York City, Guillén Kaiser is fluent in Spanish and German. Follow her on Twitter @GypsyStrategy.

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View More View Less Hilda Romero
DIRECTOR OF FINANCE AND OPERATIONS
Hilda Romero
Hilda Romero
Hilda Romero joined CPJ in 2021 as Director of Finance and Operations. She is responsible for CPJ’s financial and operational management including financial planning and budgeting, auditing, and HR and IT management to ensure CPJ’s growth and stability. A native of Guatemala, Romero has more than 15 years experience driving financial growth and stability at nonprofits in Philadelphia and New York as well as overseeing HR, technology, and legal operations. Before joining CPJ, she was the CFO for STRIVE International, a national job training and career development nonprofit. Romero has also lived in Brazil and is fluent in Portuguese in addition to her native Spanish.

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View More View Less Angela Quintal
AFRICA PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Angela Quintal
Angela Quintal
Before joining CPJ in 2016, Angela Quintal worked as an editor and journalist for more than two decades in South Africa. She was the editor of Mail and Guardian, one of South Africa’s leading investigative newspapers. She also edited The Witness and The Mercury newspapers and held several senior positions in South African newsrooms, including group political editor at the Independent Newspaper Group and parliamentary editor for the then-national news agency, the SA Press Association. Quintal changed direction from a career in human rights and constitutional law to become a journalist in 1992 during South Africa’s transition to democracy. She was presidential correspondent during Nelson Mandela’s term as South Africa’s first democratically elected president and traveled extensively. She has served as the secretary-general and treasurer of the SA National Editors’ Forum and before joining CPJ was media freedom committee chair in South Africa for Wan-Ifra’s program on strengthening media and society. Quintal holds a Bachelor of Journalism and a Bachelor of Laws from Rhodes University. Follow her on Twitter @angelaquintal.

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View More View Less Jonathan Rozen
SENIOR AFRICA RESEARCHER
Jonathan Rozen
Jonathan Rozen
Jonathan Rozen reports, conducts advocacy, and coordinates emergency response across Sub-Saharan Africa. Since joining CPJ in February 2017, he has led research and advocacy trips to Nigeria, Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal, and Liberia. Previously, Rozen worked in South Africa, Mozambique, and Canada with the Institute for Security Studies, assessing Mozambican peacebuilding processes. He also wrote analyses for the think tank adelphi on links between climate action and conflict prevention in Mali, Liberia, and Kenya. Rozen was a U.N. correspondent for IPS News and has written for Al-Jazeera English and the International Peace Institute. His work has also appeared in Quartz, Africa Portal, Global Peace Operations Review, Africa Conflict Monitor, the Wilson Center’s New Security Beat, and the Daily Maverick. Rozen has a bachelor’s degree in history and political science from McGill University and a master’s degree in global affairs from the University of Toronto, where he also served as a social worker. He speaks English and French. Follow him on Twitter @Rozen_J.

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View More View Less Katherine Jacobsen
U.S. AND CANADA PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Katherine Jacobsen
Katherine Jacobsen
Katherine Jacobsen has been CPJ’s U.S. and Canada program coordinator since 2021. She joined CPJ in 2017 as the news editor. Previously, Jacobsen wrote for The Associated Press in Moscow where she reported on nuclear waste dumping, climbing HIV rates among drug users, and Russia’s air campaign in Syria. She has also worked in Ukraine where she covered the Maidan protests, Crimea’s annexation, the separatist takeover of Donetsk, and reform efforts in Kiev for outlets including BusinessweekU.S. News and World ReportForeign Policy, and Al Jazeera English. Jacobsen has a bachelor’s degree in Slavic languages and literature from Northwestern University and a master’s of science in journalism from Columbia University. She speaks Russian and is proficient in French.

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View More View Less Natalie Southwick
LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Natalie Southwick
Natalie Southwick
Natalie Southwick was named CPJ’s Latin America and the Caribbean program coordinator in 2018. She joined CPJ as its Americas research associate in 2017. Prior to joining CPJ, she was based in Bogotá, Colombia, where she was a member of Witness for Peace’s international accompaniment team, a reporting specialist with ACDI/VOCA’s Afro-Colombian and Indigenous program, and the editor of a website focused on Latin American news. Her work has appeared in the Boston Globe, the Chicago ReporterInSight CrimeRioOnWatch, and elsewhere. She has a master’s degree in international human rights from the University of Denver’s Korbel School of International Studies and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. She has lived in Colombia, Argentina, and Brazil, and speaks fluent Spanish and intermediate Portuguese.

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View More View Less Steven Butler
ASIA PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Steven Butler
Steven Butler
Steven Butler has worked as a journalist throughout Asia, writing for the Financial Times and The Christian Science Monitor from South Korea in the mid-1980s, before joining the staff of the Financial Times and reporting in Southeast Asia, London and Tokyo, including regular reporting visits to China. He lived in Tokyo for a decade, later joining U.S. News & World Report, and returning to Washington, where he served as foreign editor at Knight Ridder’s Washington bureau during the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Prior to joining CPJ in 2016, Butler served as executive director at the Institute of Current World Affairs, where he worked with institute fellows throughout the world, including in South and East Asia, and as senior editor and writer at the online magazine OZY.com. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University and has lived and worked in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and China.

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Sonali Dhawan
Sonali Dhawan joined CPJ as an Asia researcher in 2021. Previously, she served as a program officer with the American Bar Association Center for Human Rights and worked with Save the Children, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International USA. She was a recipient of the Harvard University-coordinated Center for Arabic Study Abroad (CASA) fellowship in Amman, Jordan. Dhawan holds a bachelor’s degree in government and Arabic and Islamic studies from Georgetown University. She speaks Hindi, Urdu, and Arabic. Follow her on Twitter @SonaliDhawan

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Waliullah Rahmani
Waliullah Rahmani joined CPJ as an Asia researcher in 2021. From 2016 to the fall of Kabul to the Taliban in August 2021, he was founder and director of Khabarnama Media, one of the first digital media organizations in Afghanistan. Before that, Rahmani has served as senior adviser to the chief executive office of the national unity government of Afghanistan. He also served as the founding director of Kabul Center for Strategic Studies from 2007 to 2014. In his research, Rahmani has focused on terrorism, insurgency, radical Islamic movements, Afghanistan, and the broader South Asian region for over a decade.

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View More View Less Gulnoza Said
EUROPE AND CENTRAL ASIA PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Gulnoza Said
Gulnoza Said
Gulnoza Said is a journalist and communications professional with over 15 years of experience in New York, Prague, Bratislava, and Tashkent. She has covered issues including politics, media, religion, and human rights with a focus on Central Asia, Russia, and Turkey. Follow her on Twitter @gulnozas.

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View More View Less Anna Brakha
EUROPE AND CENTRAL ASIA RESEARCHER
Anna Brakha
Anna Brakha
Anna Brakha joined CPJ as a Europe and Central Asia researcher in 2022. Prior to CPJ, she worked in different structures at the crossroads of media and international relations. She holds a master’s degree in international relations and post-Soviet studies from INALCO University and a Master of Science of Management and Media and Digital industries from ESSEC Business School. She speaks French and Russian.

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View More View Less Sherif Mansour
MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Sherif Mansour
Sherif Mansour
Sherif Mansour is an Egyptian-American democracy and human rights activist. Before joining CPJ, he worked with Freedom House, in Washington, D.C., where he managed advocacy training for activists from the Middle East and North Africa. In 2010, Mansour co-founded the Egyptian Association for Change, a Washington-based nonprofit group that mobilizes Egyptians in the U.S. to support democracy and human rights in Egypt. He has monitored the Egyptian elections for the Ibn Khaldun Center for Development Studies and has worked as a freelance journalist. In 2004, he was honored by the Al-Kalema Center for Human Rights for his work in defending freedom of expression in Egypt. Mansour has authored several articles and conducted research studies on civil society and the role of the new media and civil society in achieving democracy. He was named one of the top 99 young foreign policy professionals in 2013 by the Diplomatic Courier. He received his master’s in international relations from the Fletcher School at Tufts University and his bachelor’s in education from Al-Azhar University in Cairo. He speaks Arabic fluently. Follow him on Twitter @sherifmnsour.

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View More View Less Justin Shilad
SENIOR MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA RESEARCHER
Justin Shilad
Justin Shilad
Justin Shilad joined CPJ as its Middle East and North Africa research associate in 2017. He previously worked as an editor and freelance reporter, including at the Egypt Independent in Cairo, and assisted in the resettlement of refugees in Egypt and Kenya. Shilad has a bachelor’s degree in international studies and literature from American University in Washington, and a master’s degree in law and diplomacy from Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. Follow him on Twitter @jshilad.

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Yeganeh Rezaian
Yeganeh Rezaian is an Iranian journalist living in Washington, D.C. She previously worked as the communications director at the World Affairs Council-Washington, D.C. and has written pieces for The Washington Post and The Lily. While living in Iran, Rezaian covered Iranian political, social, and economic news for Bloomberg News and The National until she and her husband, the former Washington Post Tehran bureau chief Jason Rezaian, were detained by Iranian authorities in 2014. Rezaian was jailed for 72 days, and then fought for her husband’s freedom, which was not granted until January 2016.

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View More View Less Alicia Ceccanese
GLOBAL TECHNOLOGY RESEARCHER
Alicia Ceccanese
Alicia Ceccanese
Alicia Ceccanese joined CPJ as the global technology researcher in 2021, where she focuses on the intersection of tech, press freedom, and digital rights. She was previously a staff attorney with the Center for Human Rights at the American Bar Association and has also held positions at the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law and the Southern African Litigation Centre. Alicia received a law degree from Georgetown University Law Center and a master’s in public policy and international law from the American University of Paris.

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View More View Less Ahmed Zidan
DEPUTY DIRECTOR, DIGITAL AND SOCIAL MEDIA
Ahmed Zidan
Ahmed Zidan
Ahmed Zidan has been CPJ’s deputy director, digital and social media, since 2021; he joined CPJ in 2017 as its digital manager. He oversees CPJ’s social media, email communications, multimedia, and video output. Prior to joining CPJ, he was the social media editor of Radio Netherlands Worldwide, where he worked between Hilversum and New York. He was also a reporter and contributor to the Arabic desk at RNW (Huna Sotak) on tech, social media, and social and political issues in the U.S. and the Middle East, and was the editor of ArabNet, where he wrote about entrepreneurship and startups. Zidan was the editor of Mideast Youth (MEY), a digital platform that advocates for freedom of speech and expression and defends minorities in the MENA region, which won the 2011 Best of Blogs (BOBs) Award from Deutsche Welle. Zidan has a bachelor’s degree in medicine and surgery from Cairo University. He is fluent in Arabic and English. Follow him on Twitter. His public PGP encryption key can be found here.

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View More View Less Jennifer Dunham
DEPUTY EDITORIAL DIRECTOR
Jennifer Dunham
Jennifer Dunham
Jennifer Dunham joined CPJ as deputy editorial director in May 2018. Prior to CPJ, she worked for six years at Freedom House–including more than two years as the research director for the organization’s flagship Freedom in the World and Freedom of the Press publications–and was a lead researcher and spokesperson for the press freedom project. Previously, she was the managing editor of Facts On File World News Digest, a weekly chronicle of world events, where she also wrote news stories on a range of topics. Dunham holds a bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and a master’s degree in international relations from New York University. Follow her on Twitter @jendunham22.

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Naomi Zeveloff
Naomi Zeveloff joined CPJ as features editor in July 2020. From 2014 to 2020 she reported from Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, producing stories on Israeli settler youth, Trump’s Middle East policy, and solar panel use in Gaza for outlets such as NPR, PRI’s The World, The Atlantic, and others. She previously worked at The Forward as Middle East correspondent and deputy culture editor. Originally from Ogden, Utah, she began her career in journalism in the American West, reporting for newsweeklies in Salt Lake City, Colorado Springs, Denver, and Dallas. She holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from The Colorado College and a Master of Arts in political journalism from Columbia Journalism School. Follow her on Twitter @NaomiZeveloff

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Erik Crouch
Erik Crouch joined CPJ in January 2019. Previously, he worked as an editor at the Council on Foreign Relations. Before that, he worked as an editor and reporter in China, where he covered daily news with a focus on the region’s technology sector. He has a bachelor’s degree from New York University, and speaks Spanish and Mandarin.

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Sarah Spicer
Sarah Spicer joined CPJ as the news editor in October 2021. Previously, she reported on climate change in the Great Plains through the Report For America program with The Wichita Eagle, Kansas’ largest newspaper. An award-winning investigative journalist, she has a master’s degree in investigative journalism from Columbia University, and a bachelor’s in Spanish and English literature from Emporia State University. Follow her on Twitter at @sarahespicer.

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View More View Less Kerry Paterson
DEPUTY EMERGENCIES DIRECTOR
Kerry Paterson
Kerry Paterson
Kerry Paterson is deputy director of emergencies at the Committee to Protect Journalists. She helps guide CPJ’s emergency assistance and journalist safety work worldwide, and to shape CPJ’s response to crises. An advocacy and communications specialist, she joined CPJ in 2014 and before joining the emergencies department, served as deputy director of advocacy and communications. Prior to joining CPJ, Paterson worked with the Initiative for Conflict-Related Trauma, Médecins Sans Frontières, the Women’s Media Center’s Women Under Siege Project, and with Massachusetts General Hospital’s Division of Global Health and Human Rights. She has engaged in human rights-related work and research in East and Central Africa and the Balkans. She holds a master’s in global affairs from the University of Toronto, and a bachelor’s degree in peace and conflict studies. She is fluent in French. Follow her on Twitter @kerrykpaterson.

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View More View Less Sophia Sadinsky
DEPUTY ADVOCACY DIRECTOR
Sophia Sadinsky
Sophia Sadinsky
Sophia Sadinsky joined the Committee to Protect Journalists as deputy advocacy director in 2022. Prior to joining CPJ, she served as senior global policy manager at the Guttmacher Institute, where she led policy and communications efforts to advance sexual and reproductive rights worldwide. She previously lived for a number of years in Argentina, conducting regional human rights monitoring and advocacy with Human Rights Watch, and worked with local human rights defenders in Colombia. Sadinsky holds a bachelor’s degree in the science in society program and French studies from Wesleyan University and a master’s degree in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She speaks French and Spanish.

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Michael De Dora
Michael De Dora is U.S. advocacy manager at the Committee to Protect Journalists. He leads efforts to advance press freedom around the world with the U.S. government and other policymakers in Washington, D.C. Prior to joining CPJ, he served as director of government affairs and as the main representative to the United Nations at the Center for Inquiry, where he managed a range of domestic and international advocacy initiatives to advance freedom of conscience and religious liberty. Michael was twice elected president of the United Nations NGO Committee on Freedom of Religion or Belief in New York and is a member of the international board of directors for the Raif Badawi Foundation for Freedom. He has a master’s degree in political science from Brooklyn College and a bachelor’s degree in rhetoric and communication from the University at Albany. He started his career as an editor at Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @mdedora.

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Esha Sarai
Esha Sarai joined CPJ in 2021 as a video producer. Previously, she was a reporter for Voice of America, where she served as the acting West Africa correspondent from Dakar in 2019. Stateside, she covered Black Lives Matter protests from Charlotte to Minneapolis, and the 2020 presidential election from Philadelphia. Esha holds a master’s in political science from UNC Chapel Hill and BAs in Music and French.

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Philip Eubanks
Philip W. Eubanks joined CPJ in 2019. Prior to joining the development team, Philip worked in fundraising for CNEWA, a papal agency that provides humanitarian support to hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and refugee camps in areas facing conflict. While there he served on the UN NGO Committee on Migration and reviewed CNEWA’s work across rural Lebanon and near the Syrian border. Before working with CNEWA, Philip served two years in Morocco with the United States Peace Corps during the height of the Arab Spring. He graduated with a master’s degree in theology from Vanderbilt University and has studied at both Wabash College and the University of Aberdeen.

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Madinah Diallo
Madinah Diallo joined CPJ in 2020. Prior to joining CPJ, she worked for Grizzlies Prep, a school supported by the NBA team Memphis Grizzlies. She has also worked for the Hong Kong Committee for UNICEF, and Attajdid Journal, Morocco’s national newspaper. Diallo has a bachelor’s degree in international relations & journalism, media, and communications from Mount Holyoke College. She speaks Arabic, Hindi-Urdu, and French.

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View More View Less Margaret Abam-DePass
DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF FINANCE
Margaret Abam-DePass
Margaret Abam-DePass
Margaret Abam-DePass, CPJ’s deputy director of finance, has worked in not-for-profit organizations for 15 years. Prior to joining CPJ in 2010 as the Business and Accounting Manager, she worked as a staff accountant at both the PEN American Center in New York and at Friends of Firefighters, a Brooklyn-based organization. She also spent eight years as the office manager for the New York-based Association for Business Communication. A native of Cameroon, Abam-DePass received her bachelor’s in accounting from Kean University in New Jersey.

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View More View Less Andrés Fernández Carrasco
PROGRAM ADMINISTRATION MANAGER
Andrés Fernández Carrasco
Andrés Fernández Carrasco
Andrés joined CPJ in the summer of 2019. Previously, he conducted research and educational outreach for nonprofit and academic projects including the Association for the Recuperation of Historical Memory, Democracy Works, the Latino Family Engagement and Language Development Lab at New York University, and the Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives. He has performed transcription and translation work for cultural institutions throughout New York City, such as the Museum of the City of New York, the Museum of Jewish Heritage, the Spanish Benevolent Society, and Mil Mundos Books, and has served as a research assistant for a professor of history at NYU. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University, where he double-majored in Letters and Hispanic Literatures and Cultures, and has studied at the University of Salamanca and the University of Buenos Aires.

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View More View Less Marlene Arias
FINANCE AND OPERATIONS MANAGER
Marlene Arias
Marlene Arias
Marlene Arias joined CPJ in 2020. She has worked in operations and finance at several schools around New York City and has worked for Planned Parenthood for its research and development department. She obtained her bachelor’s and master’s from St. John’s University and is fluent in Spanish.

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Ludi Nsimba
Ludi Nsimba joined CPJ in March 2019 as the program assistant, providing programmatic, operational, and research support to all CPJ programs. From 2013-2015, she served in the U.S Peace Corps in Cameroon as health community educator, working to strengthen community support and access to health information. She worked previously as a case manager and in special events and public relations in public health, sustainable development, media relations, project management, and fieldwork in Africa and Central America. She has a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Saint Peter’s University.

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International Program Network

View More View Less Tom Gibson
EUROPEAN UNION REPRESENTATIVE AND ADVOCACY MANAGER
Tom Gibson
Tom Gibson
Tom Gibson joined the Committee to Protect Journalists in January 2017 and is CPJ’s lead advocate in Brussels covering the institutions of the European Union. Between 2014 and 2016, Gibson managed Protection International’s Burundi and Congo desks, advocating for stronger state accountability for the protection of human rights defenders and journalists as well as developing emergency responses and protection measures. Previously, he worked in Amnesty International’s Africa program from 2005 to 2014, based in London and Nairobi. He worked as a campaigner on the Great Lakes and Horn of Africa regions, and then as a researcher on the Great Lakes. In both roles, he was responsible for leading the international response when journalists were harassed, intimidated, detained, or killed, engaging with state authorities in the region as well as with governments and multilateral organizations in Brussels, Geneva, London, Paris, and Washington. He is the author of numerous Amnesty International reports and publications on human rights abuses including crimes under international law and violations relating to freedom of expression, association, and assembly. He is fluent in French and is a graduate from the University of Sussex.

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View More View Less Attila Mong
EUROPE REPRESENTATIVE
Attila Mong
Attila Mong
Attila Mong is CPJ’s Berlin-based Europe representative. A freelance journalist and a consultant for German media development organization DW Akademie, he is also a supervisory board member of atlatszo.hu, a crowdfunded investigative journalism platform in his native Hungary. Mong has worked as an investigative journalist, radio broadcaster, and columnist for 20 years. In 2013, he completed a John S. Knight Journalism Fellowship at Stanford University, a program focused on leadership and innovation in journalism. In 2011, he was a visiting research fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. Mong is the author of several investigative books in Hungary and was awarded the Pulitzer Memorial Prize for Best Investigative Journalism in 2004 and the Soma Investigative Journalism Prize in 2003.

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View More View Less Colin Pereira
JOURNALIST SAFETY SPECIALIST
Colin Pereira
Colin Pereira
Pereira serves as CPJ’s chief strategist on journalist safety. For more than 15 years, he has worked to shape the risk management model for journalists operating under threat. He is a Director at HP Risk Management, a consultancy assisting companies and media organisations operating in fragile environments. Previously he was head of security for ITN and Deputy Head of BBC High Risk Team. Pereira has advised teams of journalists covering wars, natural disasters, terrorism and riots globally, and has worked on high risk investigations. Colin Pereira was also a journalist for BBC Newsnight and BBC Current Affairs.

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View More View Less Iris Hsu
CHINA CORRESPONDENT
Iris Hsu
Iris Hsu
Iris Hsu joined CPJ as its China correspondent in 2017. Prior to joining CPJ, she interned at Human Rights Watch, Center for Arms Control and Nonproliferation, and the Atlantic Council. Hsu obtained her master’s degree in international affairs from American University. She speaks Mandarin and French and lives in Taipei.

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View More View Less Madeline Earp
CONSULTANT TECHNOLOGY EDITOR
Madeline Earp
Madeline Earp
Madeline Earp has been working with CPJ to document the impact of technology on press freedom since March 2019. She previously managed content for Security First, a tech startup solving security challenges for people at risk; and coauthored five editions of Freedom on the Net, an annual index of internet access, censorship and user rights in 65 countries published by Freedom House’s research office in New York. She was a researcher on CPJ’s Asia desk from 2007 to 2013. Earp has a master’s degree in East Asian studies from Harvard University and a bachelor’s in English literature from Cambridge University. She is based in Bristol, U.K.

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Özgür Ögret
Özgür Ögret is a Turkish freelance journalist and CPJ’s Turkey representative. He was lead researcher for the 2012 CPJ special report, Turkey’s Press Freedom Crisis.

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View More View Less Shawn W. Crispin
SENIOR SOUTHEAST ASIA REPRESENTATIVE
Shawn W. Crispin
Shawn W. Crispin
Shawn W. Crispin has worked as a journalist and editor for over 15 years based in Thailand. He was bureau chief for the Hong Kong-based Far Eastern Economic Review in Bangkok from 1999 to 2004, where he wrote on a wide range of political, business, and social issues. From 2001, Crispin also served as bureau chief for the Review‘s sister publication, The Asian Wall Street Journal. His coverage of Asia’s AIDS epidemic was part of a package recognized in 2004 for the “Excellence in Magazines” award of the Society of Publishers in Asia. From 2006 to 2015, Crispin served as Southeast Asia editor at Asia Times Online, where he wrote a regular political column and edited a team of over 20 regular contributors to the news site. Crispin is currently Southeast Asia columnist at The Diplomat. His journalism has also appeared in the International Herald Tribune, Institutional Investor and Yale Global Online, among others. In 2005, Crispin served as an investigative consultant with Human Rights Watch (Asia), where he researched press freedom issues in Thailand. for the past decade, he has served CPJ as advocate, researcher and spokesperson on Southeast Asia. He has conducted research missions and published special reports on Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. Crispin has a master’s degree in Southeast Asian Studies and International Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, where he received a prestigious Freeman fellowship. He speaks fluent Thai.

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Jan-Albert Hootsen
Jan-Albert Hootsen joined CPJ in 2016. He has worked as a freelance journalist in Mexico City since 2009 for publications in the Netherlands, Belgium, the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom, writing on subjects such as press freedom, politics, organized crime, human rights, and environmental issues. He also regularly contributes to Dutch public radio and Dutch television broadcaster RTL Nieuws. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the Fontys University of Applied Sciences in Tilburg and a bachelor’s degree in language and culture studies from Utrecht University. He speaks Dutch, English, Spanish, Portuguese, and German.

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View More View Less Muthoki Mumo
SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA REPRESENTATIVE
Muthoki Mumo
Muthoki Mumo
Muthoki Mumo joined the Committee to Protect Journalists as East Africa Correspondent in June 2017. She was named CPJ’s sub-Saharan Africa representative on August 1, 2018. She previously worked for six years as a journalist with the Nation Media Group, covering a variety of beats from East African Community integration and regional trade to technology and telecommunications for the Business Daily and Daily Nation. In 2017 she served as an alternate digital editor for the Business Daily. Mumo has a bachelor’s degree from the United States International University in Nairobi and a master’s degree jointly awarded by Aarhus University and the University of Hamburg.

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Kunal Majumder
Majumder joined CPJ in 2018. One of the founding editors-in-chief of InUth.com and Catch News, Kunal has worked for outlets including the Indian Express, Rajasthan PatrikaTehelka and Vice. He is a winner of the Statesman Award for Rural Reporting and UNDP-Laadli Award for Gender Sensitivity. He is a visiting faculty at Mass Communication Research Center, Jamia Millia Islamia University, New Delhi, and is on the steering committee of the Impulse NGO Network Press Lab, which supports reporters who cover human trafficking. A graduate in English literature and journalism from Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, Kunal was born in Dhanbad, Jharkhand, India and did his journalism exchange semesters at Sciences Po, Paris, and FCP, Helsinki. He is based in New Delhi. You can reach him on Twitter @cpj_km.

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View More View Less Evelyn Okakwu
WEST AFRICA CORRESPONDENT
Evelyn Okakwu
Evelyn Okakwu
Evelyn Okakwu joined the Committee to Protect Journalists as a Nigeria consultant in August 2019. She was appointed CPJ’s West Africa correspondent in January 2021. Okakwu previously worked for four years as a judiciary correspondent for the Premium Times online newspaper and for two years as a general assignment reporter with the Peoples Daily newspaper in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital. Okakwu has a Higher National Diploma from the Federal Polytechnic Mubi, Adama State, Nigeria. Follow her on Twitter @EveOkakwu.

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View More View Less Geralda Embaló
LUSOPHONE AFRICA CORRESPONDENT
Geralda Embaló
Geralda Embaló
Embaló joined CPJ in 2021. She is the director of newspapers Valor Económico and Nova Gazeta and is on the board of Radio Essencial, where her weekly column airs. She was a co-founder of the first economics-focused newspaper in Angola and previously hosted an economics program on Channel 2 of public television. An Angolan, Embaló counts 12 years of journalism in the country. She holds a master’s degree in institutional communication from Rome Business School and a degree in media and political economy from University of East London in the U.K. She splits her time between Lisbon, Portugal and Luanda, Angola. Find her on Twitter @EmbaloGeralda.

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View More View Less Joan Chirwa
SOUTHERN AFRICA CORRESPONDENT
Joan Chirwa
Joan Chirwa
Joan Chirwa joined CPJ in April, 2021, bringing 17 years of journalism experience. She is the founder of the Free Press Initiative Zambia, a non-profit media organization. Previously, Joan worked as managing editor of Zambian independent newspaper The Post, which the government shut down in June 2016 and liquidated in November the same year. At The Post’s successor, The Mast, she served as editor-in-chief and CEO until November 2018, when she left to concentrate on building the FPI Zambia. Chirwa holds a master’s degree in mass communication from Leicester University in the U.K., a diploma in journalism from Evelyn Hone College in Lusaka, and is completing law studies at the University of Zambia. Follow her on Twitter @ChirwaJoan.

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View More View Less Dánae Vílchez
CENTRAL AMERICA CORRESPONDENT
Dánae Vílchez
Dánae Vílchez
Dánae Vílchez is a Nicaraguan multimedia journalist with interest in human rights, feminism, migration, and politics. She has a Mundus Journalism Master’s Degree with a specialization in politics from the University of Amsterdam. She was a fellow for the International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) at AJ+ and an International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) fellow in Guatemala. Her work has in appeared, among others, The Washington Post, Newsweek, Pikara Magazine, eldiario.es, Distintas Latitudes, Confidencial, and AJ+.

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Doja Daoud
Doja Daoud is CPJ’s MENA correspondent. Before joining CPJ in March 2022, Daoud worked for the pan-Arab newspaper Al-Araby al-Jadeed as a writer and news editor, focusing on press freedom and media monitoring. She also contributed to Lebanese news outlets, and co-founded the Alternative Press Syndicate, a local union group for journalists. (Photo credit: Hussein Baydoun)

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View More View Less Assane Diagne
FRANCOPHONE AFRICA CORRESPONDENT
Assane Diagne
Assane Diagne
Assane Diagne joined the Committee to Protect Journalists as Francophone Africa correspondent in March 2022. He was previously Africa Check’s first Francophone editor-in-chief, a position he held for four years, from 2015-19. He also opened and ran the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) West Africa office from 2019 to 2021. Prior to that, he served for 12 years at the Agence de Presse Sénégalaise (APS), where he was the editor-in-chief from 2009 to 2015. Diagne holds a degree in journalism from the Centre d’études des sciences et techniques de l’information (CESTI) at Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar and a master’s degree in journalism from Cardiff University. 

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View More View Less Valentine Gavard
JOURNALIST ASSISTANCE CONSULTANT
Valentine Gavard
Valentine Gavard
Valentine Gavard is a Journalist Assistance Consultant within CPJ’s Emergencies team. Before joining CPJ, she was the Assistance Manager at the London-based Rory Peck Trust, in charge of the organization’s operations in support of freelance journalists in distress globally. She also has professional experience in migration policy and refugee law with the French Refugee Protection Agency and the European Union Asylum Support Office. Gavard is completing her Ph.D. in Geopolitics at Royal Holloway, University of London. She holds a master’s degree in Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law from the University of Panthéon-Assas in Paris. She has published several articles on migration and freedom of expression, including in The Conversation and academic journals.

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View More View Less Elisabeth Witchel
SENIOR ADVISER, IMPUNITY
Elisabeth Witchel
Elisabeth Witchel
Elisabeth Witchel has two decades of experience in human rights and international journalism. She began working at the Committee to Protect Journalists in 2001 as the Journalist Assistance Program Coordinator, and in 2007, she launched CPJ’s Global Campaign against Impunity. Witchel has authored several reports for CPJ, including Road to Justice:Breaking the Cycle of Impunity in the Killing of Journalists several editions of Getting Away with Murder: Global Impunity Index and CPJ’s Survey of Journalists in Exile; 2004’s The Fixers; and 2005’s Zimbabwe’s Exiled Press. Witchel, who is based in the United Kingdom, has presented at international forums, including UNESCO, and served on panels in London, Geneva, Belgrade, Paris, Manila, and New York. Prior to joining CPJ, she worked at Grassroots Enterprise in San Francisco and reported from Seoul, Korea, for The Korea Times and US News & World Report. Witchel has a bachelor’s in history from Stanford University and a master’s in International Studies and Diplomacy from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies. Follow her on Twitter @goodwitch917.

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View More View Less Frank Smyth
SENIOR ADVISER FOR JOURNALIST SECURITY
Frank Smyth
Frank Smyth
Frank Smyth serves as CPJ’s senior adviser for journalist security. He is a journalist who has specialized in armed conflicts, organized crime, and human rights, reporting from nations including El Salvador, Guatemala, Colombia, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Sudan, Jordan, and Iraq where, in 1991, he was imprisoned for 18 days. Through the 1990s Smyth investigated arms trafficking for Human Rights Watch. He has reported for CBS News, and written for The NationThe Village VoiceThe New RepublicThe Washington Post,The New York TimesThe Wall Street JournalThe International Herald TribuneWorld Policy Journal, and Foreign Affairs. Smyth has testified on press freedom matters before the Organization of American States, the International Commission of Jurists, and the U.S. Congress. Smyth blogs on journalist security issues for CPJ. He is also the founder and executive director of Global Journalist Security, a firm that provides consulting and training services to journalists and others. Follow him on Twitter @JournoSecurity. Read Frank Smyth’s blog.

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