Soraya Senosier

Soraya Senosier is a Social Specialist in the Environmental Safeguards and Social Unit at the Inter-American Development bank where she works to ensure that large development programs do no harm to communities that surround them through the management of social impact assessments, social audits, and resettlement and rehabilitation plans. 

She holds a BA in Political Science and an Executive MA in Cities, as well as an MA in Peace and International Development.

Soraya has been working in International Development for over 15 years for large NGOs and Inter-governmental organizations. Prior to settling in Washington, D.C., she lived in Mexico, Honduras, Spain, the Dominican Republic, Kosovo and Haiti. It is her firm belief that real development must be sustainable and provide the opportunity for every human being to live with dignity in a society that benefits one and all.

Soraya hails from Montreal and has always been active in the Haitian diaspora community. 

Dr. April Mayes

April J. Mayes focuses her research on the Dominican Republic and teaches courses in Colonial Latin American history, Afro-Latin American history, women’s and gender studies, and Africana studies. A graduate of Pomona College, Mayes was awarded a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship she used to examine Protestant women’s social justice movements in Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala and Ecuador. Afterwards, she attended the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor where she earned a Ph.D. in history (2003), with an emphasis in the Spanish-speaking Caribbean, gender, ethnicity and race in the Americas, comparative post-emancipation studies and anthro/history.

Mayes is the author of the book, The Mulatto Republic: Class, Race, and National Identity in the Dominican Republic (University Press of Florida). 

 As co-chair of the Haiti-Dominican Republic section of the Latin American Studies Association, Mayes, in collaboration with Prof. Kiran Jayaram, increased section membership and the section’s visibility through social media.  Mayes is one of the co-founders of the Transnational Hispaniola collective, an intellectual initiative that serves to promote social scientific research in Haiti and in the Dominican Republic as well as cross-national dialogue and intellectual exchange. 

Deacon Roberta Wall

Roberta Wall is a retired Deacon in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) and a retire educator with over 20 years experience in the classroom and 12 as a school principal.  Here education includes a BA in French (not a fluent speaker) and a CA Teacher Certificate form CSUSB, a Master’s Degree in Learning and Behavior Disorders from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Administrative Credentials for California, and a Master’s Degree in Christian Ministry with an emphasis on Evangelical Justice, from Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley, CA.

After her retirement, Roberta became an active volunteer in justice work, focusing on issues that affect immigrants in this country.  She is the secretary on the HBA Board and co-leader of the ELCA AMMPARO Network for Southern CA.  Roberta is an active member of her congregation in San Clemente, CA. With her husband of 49 years, Roberta enjoys hiking, biking and spending time with her 5 grandchildren and one great grandbaby.  She also enjoys sewing and crocheting, especially for the grandkids, and reading mysteries.