U.S.-based Team

Amy G. Lehman, MD, MBA, Founder and CEO
Melissa Cassan, Chief Operating Officer
Jessica Boi, External Relations and Programs Manager
Lilian Haymann, Special Advisor to the CEO
Joel Frushone, DRC Consultant
Kevin Starace, Senior Advisor
Kate McLean MD, MPH, FACOG, Women’s Health Consultant


 

Dr. Amy Lehman

Amy G. Lehman, MD, MBA
Founder & CEO

Dr. Amy G. Lehman is the founder of the Lake Tanganyika Floating Health Clinic (LTFHC)/WAVE. The LTFHC is an international organization whose mission is to address the problem of health care access for millions of people who live in the isolated, but strategically critical Lake Tanganyika Basin/Great Lakes region of Central Africa.

The Lake Tanganyika Basin is not only Africa’s largest source of available fresh water (and the world’s second largest), but is home to enormous mineral resources vital to next generation technologies, newly discovered fossil fuels, and hundreds of endangered species and unique biodiversity. Dr. Lehman and WAVE have thus become recognized and sought after as key experts, advisers and partners to actors as diverse as regional governments and local tribes, through to donor governments, philanthropists, non-profit organizations and multi-national corporations increasingly coming to understand the magnitude of importance of the Lake Tanganyika Basin across health, energy, environment and economic development disciplines.

Dr. Lehman graduated from Choate Rosemary Hall and was chosen as their 2014 Alumni Award recipient. She received both an MD and MBA from the University of Chicago, and additionally trained in General Surgery at the University of Chicago Medical Center and was a Senior Fellow with the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics. Dr. Lehman received the 2014 Distinguished Young Alumni Award from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. She has been honored by Newsweek as one of the “150 Women Who Shake the World,” and by a number of other publications for her work in the Lake Tanganyika Basin. She presents regularly at leadership conferences such as GE Leading and Learning, TED, and is most proud to be the mother of Max, her favorite person of all time.


Melissa CassanMelissa Cassan
Chief Operating Officer

Working closely with Founder & CEO, Dr. Amy Lehman for the past 4 years, Melissa currently oversees all internal operations, including financial management, legal and compliance issues and human resource functions.  Educated at Wake Forest University, Melissa started her career at BBDO/OMD in New York City developing media strategies for General Electric’s consumer and trade businesses.  After 2+ years, she left this position and transitioned to marketing on the client side at Williams-Sonoma, Inc. at their corporate headquarters in San Francisco.  At WSI, Melissa led the planning and execution of direct-to-consumer marketing campaigns and managed demand sales forecasting for their emerging brands, Pottery Barn Teen and west elm.


Jessica Boi
External Relations and Programs Manager

Jessica Boi works as External Relations and Programs Manager out of the Chicago office. Previously, Jessica served as Project Manager at Link Community Development USA. Jessica studied International Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a focus on economic development in Africa, and graduated with Highest Distinction for her field research on the efficacy of microfinance in Senegal. She also received the International Undergraduate Achievement Award for her active involvement with post-conflict reconstruction in Uganda through the Illinois chapter of Invisible Conflicts, a student organization dedicated to exposing conflicts neglected by most western media and governments. Jessica has spent extensive time in northern Uganda working with a community reconstruction organization called Peace Together Uganda (PTU) and helped acquire a USAID grant for the construction of a pig farm to improve PTU’s sustainability. She has also lived and worked in northern Peru.


Lilian Haymann
Special Advisor to the CEO

Lili Haymann joined the LTFHC/WAVE as Special Advisor to the CEO in April 2016. A Swiss national, she recently completed her MSc in Ecological Economics at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland where she specialized in marine-related issues, integrated resource management, and climate change and corporate strategy. In 2015, Lili worked as Deputy Chief of Staff for the Tanzanian presidential campaign of board member Mwele Malecela.

Previously, Lili worked as the LTFHC/WAVE’s first intern (2013-2014), where she assisted with social media/marketing, programmatic support and the completion of our first white paper on oil and gas exploration in the African Great Lakes. She earned her BSc in Politics and Social Policy at the University of Bristol, UK and is also a Lee Strasberg alumna.


Joel FrushoneJoel Frushone
DRC Consultant

Joel Frushone is the founder and CEO of Crescent Consultants, an international strategic relations firm that specializes in global communications strategies and government relations in developing nations.

Joel has 20+ years in U.S. and global communications and message and policy development experience and works closely with foreign governments at all levels, public and private enterprises, foundations, development agencies, United Nations agencies, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) and journalists and media outlets throughout the world.

Educated at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Joel began his professional career in 1990 as a Legislative Assistant for Congressman Tom Ridge, and worked as his personal assistant when Mr. Ridge was first elected Governor of Pennsylvania in 1994.

Joel went on to serve as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Lesotho, where he taught small-scale agriculture production to women and children from 1995 to 1997.

As the Communications and Advocacy Director for World Vision International in Rwanda and Burundi from 1999 to 2000, Joel promoted World Vision’s work with genocide survivors.

As an Africa Policy Analyst with the U.S. Committee for Refugees, Joel documented the plight of and advocated for uprooted populations in Africa’s most volatile countries from 2001 to 2004.

As a consultant for The Stevens & Schriefer Group, which was part of the George W. Bush for President media team, Joel has helped elect U.S. Members of Congress, Senators, Governors, and foreign leaders.  Joel was the Senior Media and Communications Advisor to the winning presidential campaign of Joseph Kabila in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and to Dr. Sali Berisha’s winning campaign for Prime Minister in Albania.

Since establishing Crescent Consultants in 2007, Joel has helped clients solve communication challenges and helped others navigate the complexities of bureaucracy, policy, culture and risk throughout the developing world. His work includes:

  • Designing and implementing national and international communications strategy for Personal Representative to fight sexual violence and child recruitment into armed groups in the DRC.
  • Designing and implementing global communications strategy for the Gertler Family Foundation.
  • Designing and implementing DRC public image campaign for President Joseph Kabila.  Featured in BBC Focus on Africa Magazine.
  • Assessing media environments in post-conflict Africa countries the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID), political candidates and parties, domestic and international NGO, public and private businesses.
  • Helping lead the establishment of the Lake Tanganyika Floating Health Clinic, www.floatingclinic.org, in Africa’s Great Lakes region.
  • Consultant to Africa Center for Strategic Studies.
  • Analyzing media landscape and developing communications strategy framework for STAR-Ghana.
  • Designing and implementing media and communications training program for women’s civil society groups for the International Republican Institute in Sri Lanka.
  • Designing and implementing communications and public outreach campaign for the Darfur-Darfur Dialogue andConsultation (DDDC) in Sudan.

Joel is fluent in English, French, and Sesotho, and has written, directed, and produced television and radio commercials in numerous languages. He lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife and son.

www.crescentconsultantsllc.com


kevin

Kevin Starace
Senior Advisor

Kevin Starace brings 22 years of professional experience from across multiple sectors – public, private, non-profit and social enterprise, with the last 15 years at the intersection of international development and business.
Starace graduated from State University of New York at Albany magna cum laude in politics and communications as a recognized student leader. His career began in politics at age 20 writing speeches and advertisements in the 1992 US Presidential elections then in London as an aide in the House of Commons of the English Parliament.

Commercially, as an award-winning creative in the new business department of Young & Rubicam/New York, Kevin was part of a stealth, integrated business unit that won over $300 million in new billings. And as an entrepreneur/executive in the new digital economy he helped lead two start-ups: a communications firm with 80 optioned employees, and a new media channel, both sold to major media companies.

Over the next 15 years, much of it as an Executive Director at the United Nations Foundation in Washington D.C., Starace headed a variety of initiatives across international development (energy, agriculture, complex emergencies, poverty eradication, global health, innovative finance) with a particular emphasis on: cross-sector partnerships, financing, policy, governance, reform, change management, fundraising and lobbying. Kevin served as Vice Chair of the Roll Back Malaria Partnership Board, founding Chair of RBM’s Performance Committee, and on the board of the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. He produced documentaries, concerts in Africa and long-running cause marketing campaigns as a leading global health advocate from 2004-2012. And, since 2008, pioneered innovations in the development finance market – founding the Pledge Guarantee for Health and co-founding Financing for Development Corp., a US 501c3, accounting for over $80 million/year in available global health resources from 2012-2015.


Kate McLean MD, MPH, FACOG
Women’s Health Consultant

Dr. Kate McLeanDr. Kate McLean currently oversees and manages LTFHC’s contraceptive outreach project, “Bringing Long-Lasting Contraception to Lake Tanganyika” funded by Hivos International.  She received her undergraduate degree and MD from the University of Chicago, then went on complete residency training in Obstetrics and Gynecology as well as a Masters in Public Health at the University of Washington in Seattle.  She is board certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology and is a fellow in the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG).  Dr. McLean has worked on behalf of ACOG advocating for improved women’s health care on both the state and federal levels and has been elected Secretary of the Washington State ACOG Executive Board.  She is also a published researcher, having completed projects focusing on cervical cancer screening in developing nations.


Past Interns

Mohamed Shabani Kariburyo
Data Intern, 2015

Mohamed Shabani Kariburyo is helping the LTFHC standardize incoming data from our Innovation in Malaria Control scoping exercise. A native of Burundi, Shabani grew up on the shores of Lake Tanganyika in Bujumbura. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Economics from Saint Cloud State University and a Master’s Degree in Applied Economics from Western Michigan University. Shabani is currently pursuing a PhD in Economics at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts, and hopes to produce a paper or a thesis related to the issues facing Lake Tanganyika and/or the region. Shabani is fluent in Swahili, Kirundi, French, and English, and has an intermediate level of Spanish.

HannahHannah Muirhead

Policy Intern, 2014-2015

After leaving the University of Aberdeen with a first class honours degree in Politics and International Relations, Hannah relocated to the Netherlands where she studied at the United Nations University institution UNU/MERIT in Maastricht and completed a double MSc in Public Policy and Human Development, specializing in Regional Integration and Multilevel Governance. There, she developed a strong interest in the use of regional cooperation as an instrument for addressing various development issues, particularly in cross-border micro-regions. She spent a year at policy think tank Reform Scotland in Edinburgh post-graduation, until deciding it was time to pursue her specific development interests further.