Announcing Our 2021-2022 Global Goals Ambassadors
Through our Global Goals Ambassador program, members can leverage their passion for issues within an SDG and engage local and national communities around programming and other activities. During this yearlong program, the Ambassadors receive training from UNA-USA and United Nations Foundation staff to help support their engagement plans, blog posts, workshops, speaking with various audiences, and all other efforts around their SDG. We encourage you to learn more about, and engage with, our new cohort of Ambassadors.
SDG 1 – No Poverty
Arbazz is an award-winning marketer, nonprofit founder, doctoral student and podcast host. Arbazz founded the Sahaba Initiative at the age of 17 to address poverty and has raised over $5 million dollars to holistically address structural and systemic injustices among low-income families in the inner city by integrating wellness, advocacy, and service. He lead the Sahaba Initiative to become the 2018 Nonprofit of the Year recognized the State of California and he’s recruited hundreds of Muslim Millennials and GenZers who have been historically marginalized in getting involved in their local community. He recently launched the podcast The Bazz Show which engages some of the most conscious leaders in the world by exploring their innovation and turning it into action. The guests have diverse backgrounds from technology to education. Each guest echoes the simple idea that we have barriers that prevent the accessibility of resources from marginalized communities. In his day job, Arbazz works at the intersection of organizational leadership and marketing in higher education. He believes in utilizing storytelling and marketing to create change and create opportunities to lead impact. Arbazz has deep expertise in digital fundraising and growth hacking, education marketing, organizational change, cultural shifts and social media branding and thought leadership. Currently, Arbazz is completing a doctoral degree in organizational change and is focused on researching the science of motivation, internal drivers and meaning among young people in leading change.
SDG 2 – Zero Hunger
Alexandria Sedlak is a 3L at the Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University in New York. She is concentrating in Health Law and Bioethics and is the founder and president of the Health Law Society. Alexandria completed her undergraduate degree at Fordham University and her master’s degree in Human Nutrition at Columbia University. Alexandria is mainly interested in the intersection between health law, public health, nutrition, and human rights, and in using that intersection to advocate for policies that ensure equitable access to healthcare, particularly for underserved and underrepresented communities. She is specifically passionate about helping to end hunger and ensuring that every community has the food security and appropriate nutrition it needs to promote better health for all individuals. She is also a current member of the Institute of Human Nutrition Food Cooperative, which aims to help reduce food insecurity in the surrounding New York City neighborhoods. Alexandria’s work experiences have all been for the purpose of growing her skills and knowledge in health promotion, including positions with Duke Hospital, Doctors Without Borders, the United Nations, Community Health Advocates, the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law, the Hofstra ǀ Northwell Medical-Legal Partnership, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
SDG 3 – Good Health and Well-Being
La Vonne Downey
Dr. La Vonne A. Downey is the program director and a professor of Health Sciences at Roosevelt University. She has authored or co-authored 120 articles, with over 1080 citations on a range of topics. Her research focus is on identifying and solving health care issues, public health issues such as vaccines, the underserved, health policy, and global health. She teaches a range of classes including: Public Health, Medical Ethics, Health Economic, Health Policy, and Global Health. She is currently a member of several medical journal editorial boards and a reviewer for various medical and public health journals. She is also an advocate for ONE.org, UNICEF and the United Nations Association.
Trisha Prabhu is the 21-year-old Founder & CEO of ReThink™, a patented app tackling cyberbullying. She is also an undergraduate student at Harvard University. For her work with ReThink, Trisha was named a Google Science Fair Global Finalist, and selected to present ReThink at The White House. She is also the humbled recipient of many awards; among them, the WebMD Health Hero Prodigy Award and the Princess Diana International Anti-Bullying Award. And in the business world, Trisha has made waves — as a contestant on ABC’s Shark Tank, and as the youngest winner of the inaugural 2020 MIT Solve Elevate Prize. In 2021, she was the youngest honoree named to Forbes’s 30 Under 30 Social Impact list. Trisha has delivered 50+ talks in 30 cities about the power of “ReThinking.” Outside of ReThink, Trisha volunteers her time to advancing gender equality at The Female Quotient, and leading SoGal Boston, a chapter of the SoGal movement.
SDG 4 – Quality Education
Chanel Williams holds a master in degree in Public Administration from Florida International University and currently is a graduate student at the University of Florida pursing a Specialist Degree in Special Education. Chanel is a career educator of 11 years who is both a community servant and human rights advocate. Chanel has championed multiple historical pilot initiatives to address the needs of at-risk African American males and community cultural heritage programs. Chanel is a member of the UNA Broward County Chapter and has held various leadership roles. She oversaw community programs and was instrumental in developing partnerships with local high schools. Chanel managed advocacy initiatives that focused on human rights, quality education, and alleviating poverty. In 2020, Chanel served as an UN Political Forum Delegate where she provided program analysis and recommendations on the World Economic Forum’s Strategic Alliance Tool and building educational community partnerships. Currently as the Educational Model UN Chair, Chanel championed an inaugural Model UN pilot program in collaboration with the World Economic Forum. The pilot program trained students from local and international communities on using data to understand world problems in support of the Global Sustainable Development Goals. Aside from her accomplishments in education and within the community, she is a published writer. Chanel’s scholarly contributions have addressed local and national topics covering civil rights and racial and economic equity.
Alexander Alvarado is a servant leader. He progresses systems of civic empowerment to improve access, and opportunity for underserved communities. At this time, Alexander is an Assessment Associate at Success Academy Charter Schools, one of the largest and highest-performing charter school networks in New York City. In this role, he supports Success Academy’s mission of promoting quality education by ensuring the accuracy and integrity of scholars’ data at one of their middle school locations. Prior to his current position, Alexander advocated for a wide variety of issues across the globe. He interned with the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, the International Rescue Committee, Little Stars Schools in Varanasi, India, and BLUE Missions Group in Dominican Republic. Most recently, Alexander worked for BLUE Missions as their Research and Development Fellow, supporting their fundraising programs, and their global citizenship curriculum. Alexander earned a Bachelor of Science in International Affairs from Florida State University during the summer of 2020. Throughout his time as an undergraduate he was deeply involved with culturally-based organizations and became a decorated student leader. He was awarded the Jon Dalton Servant Leader award, the Pursuit of Excellence Impact award, the Global Citizen Award, and was inducted into the FSU CARE Hall of Fame.
SDG 5 – Gender Equality
Uma Menon is an 18-year-old student, author, and human rights advocate from Winter Park, Florida. She is a sophomore at Princeton University studying in the Princeton School of Public and International Affairs with intended certificates in South Asian Studies, Gender & Sexuality Studies, and Creative Writing. Uma’s writing has been nominated thrice for the Pushcart Prize and appeared in over three dozen different publications, including The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, and The Progressive. Her debut book, Hands for Language (Mawenzi House, 2020), is a feminist poetry collection that explores coming-of-age as a woman of color in America. Her debut children’s books, which center female protagonists and celebrate cultural diversity, are forthcoming from Candlewick Press. Uma is an advocate for intersectional social justice, using writing and civic engagement to empower women and gender minorities. She has served as the first Youth Fellow for the International Human Rights Art Festival in 2019-2020 and as an Encore Public Voices Fellow of The OpEd Project in 2020-2021. She was also a Congressional Guest to the 2019 State of the Union and a delegate at the 2020 US Senate Youth Program.
SDG 6 – Clean Water and Sanitation
Alesia serves as the Advocacy Chair of the UNA Greater Detroit Chapter. She has served in that position since 2018. Before becoming affiliated with UNA-USA, Ms. Morris worked in Washington D.C. for former U.S. Senator Robert Kerry of Nebraska. She holds a Masters in International Business from the University of Texas – Dallas and a Bachelor of Science from the University of Nebraska – Omaha. Alesia has long been engaged with the not-for-profit community. In addition to UNA-USA, she has served on the Board of OWIT- Organization of Women in International Trade (Dallas-Fort Worth) and with Friendship West Baptist Church in Dallas, where she mentored young African-American women in what it takes to be successful in school, in business, and in life. In 2018, Alesia participated with UNA USA Greater Detroit chapter in the Universal Periodic Review Consultation on water rights in partnership with Ohio State University. They gathered information and recommendations to be included in the UNA USA Shadow report in preparation for the US to appear before the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva. In 2019, the chapter honored Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, the pediatrician that exposed the water crisis. UN Day 2020, UNA USA Greater Detroit acknowledged Doing Watershed Coalition for their work regarding the water crisis. In the midst of the pandemic, Ms. Morris was able to bring together organizations and individuals that represent all seventeen Sustainable Development Goals throughout the state of Michigan for United Nations Day 2020 (UNA USA Greater Detroit and UNA USA Greater Lansing chapter) an event that featured former United Nations Ambassador Andrew Young.
Lumbie Mlambo is a mother, wife, and graduate from Indiana University South Bend and Texas Woman’s University. An UNA Women’s member, Global Goodwill Ambassador, and a United Nations Global Water Partner, she’s an advocate for clean water and empowering women and girls to lead healthy and fulfilling lives. Inspired by her orphaned father who never went to school but served as a revered humanitarian in his local community, Lumbie took the leap to continue his legacy. As a result of her dedicated actions in serving the Igusi, Zimbabwe, community, she started the 501(c)(3) nonprofit, https://jbdondolo.org, after her father’s namesake with a mission to remove barriers of access to clean water, sanitation, and hygiene in underserved and impoverished communities to help reduce poverty and promote gender equity. She is passionate about improving people’s lives and restoring dignity, which starts when women and girls have a seat at the table. In 2019, the UNA Dallas Chapter awarded Lumbie with the UN Global Leadership Award for her work with JB Dondolo on Clean Water and Sanitation (SDG 6). In 2021, she received the Mavericks Community Shining Star Award by University of Texas at Arlington (UTA). Lumbie is a member of ForbesWomen and Global Citizen Forums, and serves as advisor for The Futurist Initiative which accelerates youth action through the power of expression
SDG 7 – Affordable and Clean Energy
Ámbar Reyes Pérez
Ámbar Z. Reyes Pérez is currently a law student at the University of Illinois-Chicago (UIC) school of law where she hopes to concentrate in sustainability. Earlier this year she graduated from the University of Central Florida (UCF) with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish, and a Diplomacy Certificate. Originally from Puerto Rico, Ámbar moved to Florida in 2014 to finish high school. In September 2017, when she was starting her freshman year at UCF, a category-five hurricane attacked Puerto Rico and revealed the stark realities of the island’s electrical infrastructure. Even before the hurricane, the power would go out with some regularity; after the hurricane, even a strong gust of wind can cause island-wide power outages. Since then, she vowed to do what she could to help her island transition to renewable energy. In her senior year at UCF, she interned with Florida PIRG, a student-run advocacy organization focused on tackling the most important issues of this generation. During the Spring 2021 semester, Ámbar became the 100% Renewable Campus Campaign Coordinator and successfully led her team to meet all but one of the deliverables, which was less than 20% from being met. This hands-on, completely virtual experience solidified her interest and passion in working with renewable and sustainable energy. She believes that the transition towards greener and cleaner energy sources will, quite literally, make the world a better place. In her free time, Ámbar loves to read, cook, and, when her schedule permits it, travel to Puerto Rico, see her family, and remind herself of how important this work is.
Shayna Vayser is a Community Manager at Energy Web, a non-profit providing digital solutions to rapidly decarbonize the energy sector. Shayna leads stakeholder engagement and solution development for the Crypto Climate Accord, a set of objectives inspired by the Paris Climate Agreement to build, test, and implement digital toolkits that enable the crypto and blockchain sector to be 100% renewably-powered. Shayna is the former Managing Director of Advocacy and Policy Strategy at the United Nations Association of the National Capital Area, where she now serves as Sustainable Development Policy Advisor. In this role, she leads the development of an innovative new initiative to map the Sustainable Development Goals across DC, Maryland, and Virginia. Shayna is excited to utilize the framework of the SDGs as a blueprint for inclusive progress and to highlight how SDG 7: Affordable and Clean Energy will underpin our shared efforts to reduce poverty, environmental racism, hostile infrastructure, and inequity.
SDG 10 – Reduced Inequalities
Isha Kakar is a young professional and an alumnus of the 2020 Fall UNA-USA Emerging Leaders Fellowship. Her upbringing in New Delhi, India inspired her to explore issues of international affairs and development. She graduated from UCLA with a degree in Global Studies in 2019, where she wrote her senior thesis on global influences on religious law in India, including gender-issues, policy, and social impact. While at UCLA, she worked with a variety of economic development, international affairs, and advocacy organizations, interacting with policy leaders and changemakers. Since graduation, Isha has been working as a Research Operations Analyst at Acumen LLC, a policy firm that focuses on providing data-driven research to the US government which helps inform social and health policy throughout the country. Isha is committed to creating greater community participation to help reduce inequalities on a local and global level, and has written extensively on issues of global poverty, emerging markets, and global governance.
Ose Arheghan is a Harry S. Truman Scholar studying Chinese and political science with an international relations specialization at The Ohio State University. On campus, they are active in student government and served as the inaugural chair and co-founder of Ohio State’s Undergraduate Black Caucus. For their advocacy, the Student Life Multicultural Center awarded them the university’s Buckeye Pride award. Their advocacy has also been acknowledged by LGBTQ+ nonprofit GLAAD as evident by their inclusion on GLAAD’s list of 20 Under 20 Rising Stars for the year 2020. Prior to attending Ohio State, they served as the National Student Advocate of the Year for LGBTQ+ nonprofit GLSEN, advocating for youth voice and inclusive practices in K-12 schools. Ose plans to pair interests in human rights and foreign affairs by pursuing a career in diplomacy. Ose has an interest in linguistics and history, and has studied Mandarin Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, and American Sign Language.
SDG 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities
Donna LaSala is a passionate advocate of education for civic participation, social justice, and Triple Bottom Line sustainability. Her most recent work is in partnership with the Florida Climate Reality Project, Volusia County, and University of Florida. She is a lifetime UNA member, Professor Emeritus at Presidio Graduate School, and an Instructor at The Triple Bottom Line Institute, having previously served as a Faculty Director at Presidio Graduate School, COO/CIO at Goodwill Industries, and CIO at City of Berkeley, California. An alumna of Cornell University, University of San Francisco, London School of Economics, and Harvard University’s Senior Executives in Local Government program, Donna has helped design hundreds of corporate seminars, community workshops, high school programs, workforce development certifications, and graduate courses focused on empowering sustainable organizations and communities. As an independent consultant, she has helped NGOs, government agencies, and international companies implement information technology, business intelligence, sustainability education, and DEI programs. She has been recognized with a number of awards, including California State Assembly’s Woman of The Year, Municipal Information Systems Association of California’s Excellence Award, CIO Magazine’s Innovation Award, Presidio Graduate School’s Outstanding Faculty Award, and the Berkeley Commission on the Status of Women’s Outstanding Woman Award. When she is not at work, you can usually find her at the beach.
Ema Phelps is passionate about supporting racial justice, gender equity, and youth engagement to build resilient communities. She brings 20 years of consulting experience working with start-ups, government entities, social enterprises, nonprofit organizations, and Fortune 500 companies. She is a trained Climate Reality leader and is currently a Sustainability Instructor at The Triple Bottom Line Institute, a nonprofit that provides educational programs that encourage economic, environmental, and social sustainability. Ema earned her MBA and MPA in Sustainable Management at Presidio Graduate School where she also served as a member of staff and faculty, teaching to further the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. She hosted the 2019 Global Goals Jam in San Francisco following a 17-week webinar program highlighting champions within each of the 17 SDGs. Ema has been an active Director on the board of the UNA East Bay chapter including co-facilitation of the 2021 International Women’s Day celebration, helping to plan the pre-COP26 Western Region Climate Forum, and an avid advocate representing the UNA. She has recently relocated to St. Louis, MO where she is renovating her home implementing sustainable design best practices.
SDG 12 – Responsible Consumption and Production
Jackson Schiefelbein is a passionate learner and catalyst for impact and social entrepreneurship. He is a senior studying Sustainability (International Development) at Arizona State University. He brings a background in social impact, advocacy and engagement, sustainability, supply chain justice, communications, and brand awareness from his work with Fair Trade USA/Fair Trade Campaigns, Chegg, Tony’s Chocolonely, and a number of international community development projects. He is actively working on new social entrepreneurship ventures related to youth/student-led sustainability and impact consulting, phone cases made of recycled plastics, and an app to help consumers better understand sustainability labeling on products. Outside of this, he loves to talk about the research he is starting on gender equality in supply chains in partnership with USAID and his honors thesis on this topic. Otherwise you can find him running, eating desserts, traveling, making TikToks, or stressing about grad school applications.
SDG 13 – Climate Action
Keyon Rostamnezhad is an international climate policy advocate and recent graduate of Northeastern University. During his time at Northeastern, Keyon spearheaded a University delegation to the United Nations’ COP23, COP24, and COP25 conferences, where he engaged with diplomats, private sector leaders, and other advocates on critical climate solutions. On behalf of UNA-USA at COP25, Keyon conducted a climate policy interview with current Wisconsin Senate candidate Mandela Barnes, hosted by Facebook. After having founding UNA-USA’s Northeastern University chapter, Keyon organized an inaugural Earth Day event, which aligned sustainability organizations on campus together in a central mission. Locally, Keyon served as the Director of Policy & Communications on Alan Khazei’s 2020 U.S Congressional Campaign in the Massachusetts Fourth Congressional District, where he designed and elucidated the candidate’s climate, economic, healthcare, and other major policies, and brought public and private stakeholders together to produce local action plans for legislation to implement the candidate’s priorities. Independent climate groups rated Alan Khazei’s climate action plan as the most impactful and progressive of the race. Through this experience, Keyon brings an understanding of domestic and international policy solutions to every climate action conversation. Keyon graduated from Northeastern University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and a minor in International Affairs and Political Science. He intends to explore themes of international law, economic development, and sustainability. He is based in Boston, Massachusetts.
Paul Presendieu is the current Young Professionals Chairman for the United Nations Association of Westchester County, where he was also selected to participate in the United Nations inaugural Youth Climate Summit program of 2019. As an accomplished young professional within the environmental field, Paul prides himself on his ability to effectively use a multicultural lens for engagement as the son of Colombian and Haitian immigrants, with a stepmother from the Philippines. Paul currently works for Sustainable Westchester as the outreach coordinator, supporting public engagement with government leaders and environmental/energy advisory boards to streamline programs for the protection of our natural resources and reduction of carbon footprints. Paul co-founded an environmental justice forum for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s Association of Conservation Commissions. Paul also serves as the Co-Chairman for Climate and Clean Air for GreenLatinos, a national nonprofit that convenes a broad coalition of Latino leaders committed to addressing national, regional and local environmental, natural resources, and conservation issues that significantly affect the health and welfare of the U.S. Latino community. This year Paul was selected to represent the United States of America a the United Nations’ General Assembly Youth Plenary and 9th session of the ECOSOC Youth Forum.
SDG 15 – Life on Land
Roger Worme is a SDG Consultant since the introduction of the Sustainable Development Goals in September 2015. As an Action Team Leader of Global Zero, the international movement for the total elimination of nuclear weapons by 2030, Mr. Worme has lobbied public/private support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and Nuclear Ban Treaty. As a UNA-USA member, Mr. Worme has supported multiple international organizations, included yet not limited to, the United Nations SDG Action Campaign, World Merit, Global Goals World Cup, Teach SDGs, the African Network of Young Leaders for Peace and Sustainable Development, and New York Census. Currently, Mr. Worme is working on several SDG initiatives, such as 10TOGO, an AI for SDG acceleration program sponsored by Volkswagen and Microsoft. Mr. Worme is a City University of New York and Americorps Alumni, and volunteer at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden.
SDG 16 – Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
Tatiana Scantlebury (she/her) is a native New Yorker of Barbadian descent. She is passionate about international criminal and human rights law. Tatiana is a dedicated member of her community and is committed to justice work in the domestic and international arena. She obtained her Bachelor’s Degree from an HBCU, Delaware State University in Criminal Justice, and a Master’s Degree from John Jay College of Criminal Justice in Human Rights. Throughout her academic matriculation, Tatiana has participated in the Historically Black College/University Foreign Policy Conference in Washington D.C. with the U.S. Department of State and participated with Delaware Lawmakers within their Criminal Justice Reform Reentry Simulation Training program. Tatiana has had the opportunity to study abroad in London, UK, where she studied comparative criminal justice. While pursuing her Master’s Degree, she simultaneously served as an AmeriCorps member and Legal Hand Volunteer. Tatiana currently serves as the President of the UNA-USA Bronx Chapter and has participated as a youth delegate to the Friendship Ambassadors and the ECOSOC HLPF Youth Forum. She has worked within the non-governmental and non-profit sectors, exploring international women’s rights and ending hunger domestically and internationally. In this role, she hopes to create sustainable and inclusive spaces for marginalized and intersectional communities while shifting narratives within the global justice arena.
Conner Huey is a student at Harvard University studying government and a graduate of Olympic College. An active advocate for youth leadership, Conner championed legislation to support youth justice as a member of the Washington State Legislative Youth Advisory Council and served as the Campaign Manager for a legislator during the 2020 U.S. election. An Eagle Scout, Conner is also an active member of the Boy Scouts of America, where he recently concluded his term as a national youth officer, leading Venturers throughout the Pacific Northwest as the Western Region Area 1 Venturing Officers’ Association President. Conner works with the Boy Scouts of America’s International Committee and as a volunteer for the World Scout Centre’s Communications Team, helping to plan the centre’s centennial celebration in 2023. Within his hometown, Conner helped found Survivors Support Through Outreach Prevention, a community organization dedicated to ending sexual violence. Currently, Conner is helping write a book in coordination with the U.S. Department of State that highlights the careers of American diplomats. Attending events such as the 75th United Nations ECOSOC Youth Forum, Conner is passionate about achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 and is excited to serve as a Global Goals Ambassador to empower Americans with the tools necessary to foster a more peaceful and just world.
SDG 17 – Partnerships for the Goals
Samrah Khan is a public policy student from Dallas, Texas. As a proud first-generation Pakistani-American, she is passionate about utilizing the power of partnerships and cross-cultural connections between government, businesses, and non-profit organizations in ways that will help eradicate poverty, end social injustices, and empower the incoming generation of youth leaders to achieve the SDGs by 2030. She is dedicated to making the world a better place through advocacy, coalition-building, and the application of public policy and hopes to promote sustainable development as a policymaker in the future while championing inclusion for all.
Sofia Rinvil’s commitment to justice and human rights was inspired by her experiences growing up, which sparked a passion for business, law, and policy. Sofia is a natural problem solver. She wants to spend her career helping those in need to formulate a broad strategy to protect legal rights or bring about social change. Her current interests lie in the particular practice experience needed to navigate the evolving fields of entrepreneurship and community development. Sofia has held various Board positions and volunteer leadership positions with several organizations, including the American Cancer Society, American Constitution Society, and Columbia University. Sofia also volunteers her time to young scholars as a Mentor to college and graduate students. She has used her legal education to volunteer as a Court Appointed Advocate to help foster children in the court system. She holds degrees in Political Science, Global Affairs and Human Security, Negotiation and Conflict Resolution, and Law from separate top-tier programs. In her free time, she enjoys reading, cooking, traveling, binge-watching shows, and boxing.