Board of Directors
Sandra Fowler, President, 2019-2020
Sandra M. Fowler entered the intercultural field in the 1970s
researching the Peace Corps PRIST induction program for the National Bureau of
Standards Applied Psychology division, followed by 8 years of U.S. Navy
personnel research during which the simulation game BaFa BaFa was developed.
She directed the Navy’s Overseas Duty Support Program from 1979 to 1989, was
president of SIETAR International in 1988, followed by 20 years as an
independent consultant and trainer. Her publications include the 2-volume Intercultural Sourcebook of Cross-Cultural
Training plus many articles and chapters in a variety of books on
Holly Emert, Ph.D. is the past-president of SIETAR USA. She has been an active SIETAR USA member since 2001. Her service to the organization includes membership on the Board of Directors as Professional Development portfolio chair, co-chairing the 2013 national conference held in Washington, DC, and other forms of service to the organization. Outside of SIETAR USA, Holly works at the Institute of International Education (IIE) as the program director of the Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Program. Holly is also adjunct faculty at both the American University School of International Service and Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey; she teaches intercultural relations at both institutions. She has extensive experience working in the areas of intercultural and diversity training; international education programming; international development; quantitative and qualitative research design and analysis and evaluation. She has worked in several countries, including China and France. She earned a Ph.D. in Comparative and International Development Education, International and Intercultural Education focus, from the University of Minnesota in 2008. She currently lives in Washington, DC.
Justin Sitron, Secretary
Justin A. Sitron, PhD is associate professor of human sexuality studies and associate dean in the School of Human Service Professions at Widener University where he also serves as the director of the Center for Human Sexuality Studies and the Interdisciplinary Sexuality Research Collaborative. Dr. Sitron has been working as a community-based human sexuality educator since 2005 when he left his career as a Spanish teacher to pursue a career more focused on diversity, inclusion, and social justice. As a public school teacher he recognized the incredible need for teachers and other human service professionals to better understand their students, especially their students of color, LGBTQ+ students, and sstudents from other marginalized and oppressed populations. He is trained at the graduate level in human sexuality education, has two certificates in sexuality education and sex therapy from the Fundación Sexpol in Madrid, Spain, and his doctorate in human sexuality studies. Justin’s current professional projects include training health care providers and community-focused educators how to ground their practice in a sexual and reproductive rights perspective that is informed by the principles of racial and economic justice. His work is grounded in an intercultural approach to understanding and connecting, and he continues to develop sexological worldview as a construct and framework to underpin and measure the impact of his work.
Hamilton Cruz, Treasurer
Hamilton J. Cruz grew up Nu Yorican in the Bronx, NY. He has lived in Miami, Florida, San Francisco, California, Yannawa in Bangkok, Thailand, and Koga, Utsunomiya, and Fujisawa Cities in Japan. His business background ranges from Import/Export to Human Resources. He has held staff positions as an ESL English Teacher, Training Manager, Intercultural Consultant, Corporate Consultant, and Senior Corporate Consultant. Hamilton possess Master’s Degrees in Education and Economics. He has worked with corporate training organizations and post-secondary institutions assisting people in improving their intercultural and interpersonal communication skills, along with their critical and analytical capabilities. Hamilton currently lives in Las Cruces, NM with his wife, three kids, and their dog. He teaches and practices the martial art of Aikido, occasionally performs on stage, and runs in his free time.
Vacant, Leadership Development Director, 2018-2020
Brett Parry, Communications & Marketing Director, 2018-2020
Brett Parry currently serves as Communications Director for SIETAR USA. Brett's early professional background was in the mining and engineering field in his native Australia, before moving into the business of retail franchising. In 2000, Brett moved to the USA to pursue international franchise opportunities. Shortly after arriving, Brett also began consulting to Australian companies wishing to expand into the North American market, many times in collaboration with the Australian Trade Commission. It was this shift that brought him to recognize the importance of cross-cultural knowledge and understanding. Brett soon expanded his business to include Asian and European clients, offering further real world learning opportunities in navigating cultural differences. Brett has been certified by a number of cultural learning organizations to deliver their programs in support of global mobility and cultural competency. He currently delivers these programs in support of executives and employees of some of the world’s largest corporations. Brett currently lives in Chicago, IL.
Julia Gaspar-Bates, Local Groups Director, 2017-2019
Julia Gaspar-Bates joined the SIETAR USA Board of Directors as Local Groups Director in 2017. She has been a member of SIETAR USA since 2002 and has been involved with the organization in various capacities over the years such as heading up the SIETAR Washington DC chapter from 2007-2010, co-chairing the SIETAR USA conference in 2013 and teaching yoga at many of the annual conferences. Julia is co-founder and president of Intercultural Alliances, LLC, a global intercultural training and consulting firm. Since 2000, she has provided cross-cultural training and consulting services on four continents and in multiple foreign languages to executives, educators and students, military service members and governmental and non-governmental personnel. A dual citizen of the U.S. and the U.K., Julia lived in France for over seven years, has lived for shorter periods in Mexico, Italy and Switzerland and has traveled to over 45 countries. She speaks French, Spanish and Italian fluently and is currently studying Brazilian Portuguese. She has been an adjunct professor at George Washington University since 2007 and writes a bi-monthly column "Cultural Connections" for the Hyattsville Life & Times newspaper. Julia holds a Master’s degree in Intercultural Relations from Lesley University. A resident of Washington DC for the past 13 years, Julia is currently living in Cuenca, Ecuador with her husband and daughter where they are doing a cultural sabbatical.
Melinda Bullen, Professional Development Director
Melinda C. Bullen is new to the SIETAR USA Board of Directors. Both as a student of, and contributor to, the intercultural field, she is dedicated to developing opportunities for professional learning and growth for SIETAR members. Melinda is currently serving as the Training and Development Officer for the City of Portland’s Water Bureau. With an emphasis on diversity, inclusion, and equity, she designs and implements training, develops programming, and co-creates organizational culture that engages employees at all levels of the organization. Prior to her work with the city, she spent most of her career in higher education working to create college access and inclusion for historically marginalized students. She has lived on both coasts of the United States and has spent time abroad, teaching, training, and writing in Santiago, Chile. She currently resides in Portland, Oregon, and spends her free time socializing, exploring, antiquing, creating, Netflix-ing, and searching for the perfect buttermilk biscuit to satiate her Southern roots.
Sherri Tapp, Outreach & Diversity Director
Vacant, Sponsorship Development (S.E.A) Director
Vacant, Conference Oversight Director, 2017-2019
Ray S. Leki 2018-2020
Ray S. Leki is a career member of the Senior Executive Service of the United States government at the Department of State, Foreign Service Institute. He is also an adjunct professor of intercultural management with the rank of Senior Interculturist in Residence at American University, and an author. At the Foreign Service Institute, he is the director of the Transition Center, where he oversees preparation and support for employees and family members entering, transitioning within, and leaving the U.S. foreign affairs community. He has developed, designed, and overseen the implementation of international security awareness training for the U.S. foreign affairs community for over 30 years. His work in government began as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Nepal in 1979, and continued with a series of Peace Corps staff assignments in Washington, Nepal, Pakistan, and Poland, before joining the Department of State in 1991. At the U.S. Department of State, he has been a leader in dealing with far-flung diplomatic communities experiencing crisis and trauma. Recent interventions included work in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Algeria, and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. He has focused his organizational efforts on creating smarter, more resilient, and more effective expatriates. In 2016, he opened the Center of Excellence in Foreign Affairs Resilience as a new division within the Transition Center. Ray has taught a range of graduate courses and seminars through American University’s School of International Service, Intercultural Management Institute. He published Travel Wise: How to Be Safe, Savvy and Secure Abroad through Intercultural Press/Nicholas Brealey Publishing in 2008.
Kelli McLoud-Schingen 2018-2020
Kelli McLoud-Schingen is President of KMS Intercultural Consulting and has specialized in Global Diversity and Inclusion since 1989. As a long-time member of SIETAR USA she has served on the board in some capacity since 2003. She served as Conference Chair in 2009 and as conference Co-Chair in 2016. Before coming into leadership at SIETAR USA, Kelli also served on the Board of Directors for the now non-operational SIETAR Houston from 2001-2007. She has also been active with Young SIETAR. As you can see, Kelli is committed to the SIETAR global network and looks for every opportunity to engage in the global community.
Rob Pusch 2018-2020
Rob Pusch has been an active member of SIETAR USA since 2002. Rob has served as the communications director and has been part of the conference planning team since 2010. Rob is associate director of Syracuse University Project Advance and oversees SUPA’s instructional services unit. He also teaches in the Instructional Design, Development and Evaluation program at SU. As a consultant, Rob does workshops on LGBT issues. He is one of the coauthor’s of the Cultural Detective: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender.