Ana Luisa Moran Ahern, Executive Director
Originally from Washington, DC, Ana Luisa spent part of her childhood in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. In 2004, she returned to Honduras to co-found the Organization for Youth Empowerment (OYE), which provides education, leadership training, and capacity building to urban youth. In 2015, First Lady Michelle Obama awarded OYE the International Spotlight Award as part of the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards.
She holds a BA from Barnard College and studied socio-economics at the Institute of Social Studies in the Netherlands and the Center for Development Studies in India. She completed a master’s degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California. Her contributions to social and environmental justice include supporting women’s movement building in Latin America, Africa and Asia, training indigenous youth in eco-tourism in Honduras, and conducting research in a genetics lab monitoring fish spawning activity in the Gulf of California.
Douglas Chica, Consulting Program & Policy Manager
Douglas Chica lives in the Xiriualtique Jiquilisco Biosphere Reserve buffer zone in El Salvador. He joined the Mangrove Association at the age of 16 as a volunteer park ranger and participated in their youth training programs. He graduated from the Salvadoran Lutheran University with a bachelor’s degree in social work and sustainable development while continuing his work as a community leader and environmental activist in the Bay of Jiquilisco.
He is a volunteer park ranger, president of his local community development association, an active member of the regional disaster preparedness committee, and volunteers in the community library teaching reading skills to children.
From 2015 to 2018 Douglas held an elected position as a councilmember with the Municipality of Jiquilisco. Currently, he is the secretary of the Bay of Jiquilisco Ramsar Committee, an active member of the Xiriualtique Jiquilisco Biosphere Reserve Committee and national coordinator of the national Mangrove Alliance. He is currently pursuing an advanced degree in environmental law at the Salvadoran Lutheran University, which he hopes to use to further protect the environment and the people of El Salvador.
Mallory McDaniel, Communications & Outreach Consultant
Mallory spent her childhood in rural Alabama before moving to Auburn, AL to study agriculture and the environment. Her work at Auburn University was interdisciplinary, focusing on agronomy, hunger studies, philanthropy, and nonprofit studies. She worked as an Undergraduate Research Assistant on various agricultural research projects, learning to develop and execute viable studies to ensure sustainable use of water, fertilizer, soil, and organic matter. Her interest in using environmentally conscious agriculture to help create stronger, more sustainable communities led her to pursue more policy and philanthropy based answers to food insecurity problems.
Mallory’s community-based work includes direct service to food-insecure families and collaboration with food-sharing projects, including expanding the reach of Auburn University’s Food Bank Garden to neighboring communities. She looks forward to fighting for a world where all people can thrive.