Our Board Members

Suzanne Smith is the President of the RPCVs of Colorado, taking on this role in May 2015. Suzanne served in the role of Advocacy Chair from 2012 through 2015 and will continue to head up many of the advocacy efforts for the RPCVs of Colorado while in the role of President. Suzanne served as a Health Extension Volunteer in Mongolia from 2005 to 2007, where she enjoyed the cold winters but was always grateful for the warm summers. Suzanne now works for a Denver-based nonprofit that supports Community Health Centers. 

 

 

 

Corey Higel is the Vice President of the RPCVs of Colorado and took on the role in 2015. Corey served in Cambodia from 2011-2013 as a Health Extension Volunteer. During Corey’s service he worked on community outreach with the local health center and helped develop a small nutritious porridge shop to help serve children in the surrounding areas. His favorite time was “Angkouy Langing” (ask him about it) at dusk and eating more rice and mangos than you can shake a stick at. Corey currently works for Xcel Energy doing gas engineering and operations.

 

 

 

Nancy Cole is the Secretary of the RPCVs of Colorado. Following a career in clinical and educational social work, she served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Vanuatu in the South Pacific from 2006-2008 with her husband, Charlie Hunt. As a Health Extensionist, she worked with the ten villages on her island to facilitate health education and planning, renovate a health clinic, and construct a maternity clinic. As a fundamentally urban person, she now finds joy in living in the civic and cultural heart of Denver.

 

 

Natalie Rooks became Treasurer in 2017. She served in Moldova from 2010-2012 as a Community and Organizational Development Volunteer. Looking back, her favorite memories are working with high school youth on a sanitation project and anti-trafficking efforts. She also loved learning to make wine with locals and running through the sunflower fields. Natalie currently works as a Grants Management Specialist supporting health equity projects and resident-driven community development at The Colorado Trust.

 

 

 

Callen Blackburn is the Advocacy Chair and took over the position in 2018. She served in Senegal from 2013-2015 where she worked on preventative health education and learned to dance like the locals. Callen's favorite project during her time in Senegal was running an after-school reproductive health program for middle school students. Proud to be a Colorado Native, Callen is looking to work in public health here in Denver and runs her own photography business.

 

 

 

Lauren Dorosz is the new Outreach Coordinator board member. The position was created to engage and support RPCV's who do not live in the front range/Denver area. Lauren is both an Army/Operation Iraqi Freedom veteran as well as an RPCV (Ecuador, Youth Development 2008-2010). After Peace Corps, Lauren was one of the Colorado based recruiters until the five year rule pushed her out. Lauren is now volunteering for a job that Peace Corps used to pay her to do! Lauren used her PC staff NCE eligibility and landed a great job with the Forest Service in Golden,Colorado.

 

 

 

 Samantha Ginsburg is the Service Project Chair, joining the team as of June 2016. Samantha served as a Youth Development volunteer in Zagora, Morocco from 2012 to 2014. During her time in the desert, she worked with youth of all ages, and especially enjoyed the carnivals put together in collaboration with the youth leaders. After COS, she joined the HealthCorps team with a community health center in the Aurora area, and now works there as a clinical care coordinator.

 

 

 

Valerie Hopkins is the Webmaster and also handles grants from the Don Curtis Giving Fund. She has served on the Board since 2009. Valerie served as an Education Volunteer in Samoa from 1999-2001 and got to experience the last sunset of the millennium on a beach. She taught computer studies to high school students and now currently works in IT here in Denver.

 

 

 

 

 

Sheila Mahony is the Welcome Wagon Action Team Chair, and joined the board in 2018. She is a Colorado native and studied at CU Boulder, and later earned a Master’s in International Development from American University in Washington, DC. Sheila was a Youth Development volunteer in Ecuador from 2001-2004. Her favorite activities there were the early–evening groups for teens that she facilitated in her community in the Loja barrios. She now works at Florence Crittenton Services, a non-profit organization that serves teen families in the Denver metro area.

 

 

 

 

Randy Monson has been the Membership Chair since 2008 and liaises with the Fort Collins RPCV community. He served as a TEFL teacher in Cote d’Ivoire from 1978-1980 where his lesson plans included improvised conversations between Bob Marley and Mohammed Ali. He still cultivates an extensive African music collection, though no longer dances to disco. Currently, Randy is CFO of Envirofit International, a social enterprise leading the development and distribution of clean cookstoves.

 

 

 

 

Niza Volar joined the board in 2018 as the Social Events Chair. Niza served in Ukraine from 2010-2012 as an Education Volunteer, where the days were filled with energetic little humans, an array of farm animals, wise babushkas with beautiful smiles, and just a few bowls of borscht. Nowadays, Niza spends time in the park with two tuxedo-colored cat companions and works in software development in downtown Denver.