Denise Cumbee Long
Executive Director

Denise began serving as Executive Director of International House in November of 2010. She was formerly the Executive Director of NC LEAF, a statewide loan repayment assistance program for public interest attorneys, and SAFE SPACE, a four-county domestic violence program. She has also worked with Latino immigrants and farm workers in her prior role as Program Associate with the NC Council of Churches. Denise is a United Church of Christ minister and has been an interim pastor at congregations in Chapel Hill and Elon, NC and Lorain, Ohio. She holds a BA from Wake Forest University, a Master of Divinity from Southeastern Theological Seminary and a JD from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill.
Email Denise at
dlong@ihclt.org

 

 

Anne Crotty
Immigration Attorney

Anne has led International House's Immigration Law Clinic since 2005, and each year helps over 250 low-income immigrants with their family reunification and naturalization needs. Anne is a member of the North Carolina Bar and has experience in legal services in Pennsylvania and private practice in North Carolina. Before International House, Anne was on the faculty of Independence High School and has worked as a freelance writer. Anne holds a bachelor's and a law degree from the University of North Carolina. She also has a master's degree in teaching.
Email Anne at acrotty@ihclt.org

 

Kathy Brennan
Immigration Attorney

Kathy joined International House in 2011 as an attorney with The Immigration Law Clinic. She is a member of the North Carolina Bar. Prior to International House, Kathy was a volunteer Guardian Ad Litem and worked in Insurance Defense Litigation. She has a BA from Mary Washington College in Virginia and a JD from DePaul University College of Law in Chicago. Email Kathy at kbrennan@ihclt.org

 

 

 

Jelena Giric-Held
Immigration Clinic Director

Jelena first came to International House as a volunteer in 2004. In 2006 she joined the staff as operations manager and immigration paralegal. In 2014,she became our Immigration Clinic Director. She holds BIA (Board of Immigration Appeals) accreditation which means she can represent clients in much the same way an attorney can. Email Jelena at jheld@ihclt.org

 

 

 

 

Jackie Berry
Immigration Paralegal

Jackie first came to the International House as a volunteer to help with the Immigrant Advocacy Project, now known as The Ginter Immigration Law Clinic, when the program started in 2002 under the direction of David Stewart. She volunteered for this project from 2002 to 2004. During the summer of 2005, Jackie came back to work for this program as a co-op student to meet a requirement to graduate as a Paralegal from CPCC. She just joined the International House as a full -time Immigration Paralegal. Jackie holds a JD in Colombia, South America and a Paralegal degree in the United States. She holds BIA (Board of Immigration Appeals) accreditation which means she can represent clients in much the same way an attorney can. She also has over 8 years of experience as an interpreter and translator. Email Jackie at jberry@ihclt.org

 

Rusty Reynolds
Associate Director

Rusty has been with International House since February 2009 and she brings experience and expertise in project management, marketing, team building, process development and training. Her professional experience includes management positions with Bank of America, Belk Stores Services and Cadmus Communications. She has a bachelor's degree in business administration/accounting, from Western Carolina University, and is currently pursuing a Master of Project Management, also from WCU. Email Rusty at rreynolds@ihclt.org

 

 

Megan Mavity
Director of Education 

Megan Mavity is a native of Atlanta, Georgia, but is happy to call Charlotte, North Carolina her new home. She is a 2014 graduate of Davidson College with a Bachelors degree in Hispanic Studies, and a minor in Educational Studies. A product of a Colombian mother and an Irish father, Megan’s own background has given her a deep appreciation of the cultural and linguistic diversity that International House supports and promotes. Megan began her International House journey in the summer of 2013, first as a tutor for International House’s Youth English Tutoring Program, and later as a Fall and Winter Education Intern, and Project Manager for YETP 2014. These experiences of more hands-on ESL experience combined with her experience researching K-3 literacy rates for The Belk Foundation ignited Megan’s passion for ESL education and literacy development. Megan is fluent in Spanish, and making steady progress in learning French, with the hope that she can continue to broaden her linguistic repertoire to better serve at International House. She has fallen in love with International House’s mission and community, and is so happy to support the area’s immigrant community in her role as Director of Education. Email Megan at mmavity@ihclt.org

 

Bruce Holliday
Marketing & Communications Director

Bruce first came to International House as a volunteer in 2011 before assuming his current role as Marketing and Communications Director in March of 2014. Previously, he owned and operated his own design company in Winston-Salem for 23 years. Prior to that, he worked at Wake Forest University as Director of Admissions for the MBA program. Bruce is a graduate of Davidson College and went on to earn an MBA at Wake Forest. Bruce enjoys photography, videography, writing, and the never ending pursuit of utilizing social media to communicate the passion that our staff, volunteers and clients have for this amazing organization. In his words, “I love being witness every day to the many lives that are enriched and transformed by the work we do in legal services, education, international diplomacy, and cultural interchange.”  Email Bruce at bholliday@ihclt.org

 

Johnelle M. Causwell
Citizen Diplomacy Program Director

Johnelle has been working with International House since 2012. Hailing from Kingston, Jamaica, she graduated from Warren Wilson College with a major in Economics and a minor in Political Science. After almost a decade in advertising Johnelle transitioned her career as an agency Creative Director to her other passion, International Relations. She currently works on the local level to administer the Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program along with other international professional and youth exchange programs. She is the 2013 recipient of the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce’s Young Professional Newcomer of the Year Award will serve on the 2014/2015 National Committee for Global Ties (formerly the National Council for International Visitors).
Email Johnelle at jcauswell@ihclt.org

 

 

 

Alma Hernandez
Client Services & Volunteer Coordinator

Prior to arriving in Charlotte, Alma worked for a decade in Education, teaching Bilingual/ESL elementary K-5; often leading after-school programs for students and parents. Since her arrival in Charlotte, she has been a volunteer with Action NC, Women Voting our Values, and she is VP of the National Organization of Women of Charlotte. Working at the International House in this way allows her to work with and serve the community. Born of parents who immigrated here from Mexico, Alma understands the struggle of being in a new country. Thanks to local community support, ESL and citizenship classes were available to her family. Alma believes in giving back. Email Alma at ahernandez@ihclt.org

 

    

  Carole Ward
Citizen Diplomacy Program Associate

Carole began as a volunteer at International House last year before she was hired as Citizen Diplomacy Program Associate. In addition to her Bachelor's degree, she obtained a Masters in Social Work from Tulane University. She is currently working towards a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) at Winthrop University. Carole is passionate about traveling. She has lived in Japan, Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, Turkey, India, Ireland, England, Germany, Czech Republic and the Bahamas.

Email Carole at cward@ihclt.org

   

 

 

 Phil Volponi, Director of Development

Phil Volponi also joins the team as Director of Development. Phil is managing director of vNimble, a consulting practice helping organizations improve their bottom line results. He was formerly President and CEO of Junior Achievement of the Carolinas where he managed a $2.4 M budget and provided oversight culminating in significant organizational growth and increases in operating revenue and student impact during his 15 year tenure.

Email Phil at pvolponi@ihclt.org

 

 Tanja Ribar Pauler, AmeriCorps ACCESS Volunteer Coordinator

Tanja was introduced to the International House through English Conversation hour in 2009, where she worked on her English in a fun and relaxed atmosphere and made her first friends in Charlotte upon moving here from Belgrade, Serbia. This first experience with International House made a lasting impression and left her with desire to come back. Since the beginning of 2014 Tanja has been volunteering with International House in the Citizenship Tutoring Program and enjoys helping new Charlotteans make Charlotte their home. Tanja has a master’s degree in History from University of Belgrade and is working towards the post-bac Nonprofit Management Certificate degree at University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG). She is also starting an internship position as a Development Associate with Latin American Coalition. 

Email Tanja at tpauler@ihclt.org

 

 Amanda Tesh, AmeriCorps ACCESS ESL Education Coordinator

• Educational Background: BA from UNC-Asheville in Spanish and Interdisciplinary Studies; minor in Africana Studies.
• Languages Spoken: English and Spanish—also learning Portuguese
• Countries Visited: France, Mexico, Honduras, Ghana
• Why I teach with International House: . I am an AmeriCorps volunteer for International House because I believe that education is an important part of the successful integration of immigrants and refugees into their new communities. I also have a passion for languages—I am fluent in Spanish, and am now working on learning some Portuguese as well! I hope that my experience with the International House as an ESL Education Coordinator will provide me with many opportunities to grow in my personal and professional relationships. I also hope to continue working with immigrant/refugee populations throughout my career.

Email Amanda at atesh@ihclt.org