Our team's expertise includes non-profit management, corporate philanthropy, strategy development, government relations, communications, event planning, advocacy and a wide range of issues experience. Most importantly, each team member cares deeply about the issues on which we work and is dedicated to guiding our clients to create lasting, positive impact.
Trevor Neilson, President
Trevor has advised many of the world's leading philanthropists including Bill Gates, Bono, President Bill Clinton and Sir Richard Branson, and has been involved in the creation and implementation of multiple world-renowned philanthropic initiatives.
Learn more about Trevor.
Maggie Neilson, CEO
Maggie has developed and implemented strategies for domestic and international social issues ranging from microfinance to childhood obesity for clients including the United Nations, The Eva Longoria Foundation, John Legend's Show Me Campaign and the M.A.C. Global AIDS Fund. Maggie holds an MBA from Columbia University.
Learn more about Maggie.
Gina Coburn, Senior Advisor
Gina was most recently Managing Director at a consulting firm where she led strategic planning and managed philanthropic projects for individual and corporate foundation clients. Prior to that she was Vice President of Equity Capital Markets for Deutsche Bank where she originated and executed public equity transactions for corporations in the media, technology, telecommunication and consumer industries. She advised corporate clients on financing alternatives and marketing strategies targeting institutional investors. As Director of Corporate Development at Dreamlife, Inc., an Internet start-up company focused on the self-improvement market, Gina led the corporate strategy and content acquisition teams. In the Strategic Planning Group at The Walt Disney Company, Gina worked with senior executives to evaluate and develop strategic initiatives for the Broadcasting and Studio divisions. Her work also focused on new business initiatives including developing business plans for new cable channels including a soap opera channel and Disney Channel Latin America. She was also involved in the preparation of strategic plans for the ABC Network, ABC Owned TV Stations, Disney/ABC Cable and ESPN. She serves on the Governing Board at Beauvoir, the National Cathedral Elementary School, where she is Secretary and a member of the Executive and Finance Committees. She also advises the Wendt Center for Loss and Healing on its fundraising efforts. Gina received a Bachelor's degree in Politics and Economics from Princeton University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Kate Cochran, Senior Advisor
Kate brings a career as a nonprofit executive, management consultant and active Board member to GPG. For the past ten years, she has held leadership positions in international development organizations providing financial services and access to higher education to millions of the world's poorest citizens. She is currently a founding Board member of Upaya Social Ventures, an organization that invests and builds businesses employing the ultra-poor of India. Previous roles have included creating a running a $10 million arts education grantmaking program in Silicon Valley and providing human resources counsel to Fortune 100 clients. Her private nonprofit consulting clients have ranged from management support organizations to nonprofit theatres to asset building initiatives for the working poor. Kate holds a BA from Stanford University and an MBA from UCLA Anderson.
Sarah Ezzy, Senior Advisor
As a Senior Advisor at Global Philanthropy Group, Sarah has advised a range of high-profile individuals and corporate clients on their philanthropic strategies. She has worked on a variety of issues including global poverty alleviation, girls' education, domestic homelessness, childhood obesity, and sustainable agriculture. Sarah was previously with Booz Allen Hamilton's Strategy and Organization Practice where she worked with both public and private sector institutions on a range of development issues. Her work included advising international organizations about how to scale up human resources and strengthen supply chains to ensure that critical medications reach HIV/AIDS patients; developing programming to address gender-related obstacles in areas including health care and financial services; and exploring ways to encourage economic growth in the least developed countries through public/private partnerships. Her clients included the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, National Institutes of Health, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, United Nations, World Bank, and World Health Organization. Sarah has specific expertise in developing political institutions and civil society organizations in the Middle East and North Africa. She has also served as an election official in several international elections. She holds a BA in French Studies and Geography from Dartmouth College and a Master of Public Policy from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. She speaks fluent French and is co-founder of SADIQ, a non-profit organization created to support Iraqi refugees in the Middle East.
Dr. Neeraj Mistry, Senior Advisor
Neeraj is an international public health physician and health economist who works across public health, medicine, and international development to forge partnerships between NGOs, governmental leadership, and private sector leaders. Most recently, he led the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases, an advocacy and resource mobilization initiative. Previously, Dr. Mistry was a founding member and Vice President of the Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GBC), where he led the technical strategy of business engagement in global health, developing the Business AIDS Methodology and Best Practice AIDS Standard and led GBC's work on co-investment and public-private partnerships with the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the Global Fund, where he served to support the technical review panel. Dr. Mistry served on the Board of African Services Committee and the International Advisory Board of the END Fund, the world’s first private philanthropic initiative to combat the seven most common NTDs. Following the completion of his medical training at the University of the Witwatersrand Medical School in Johannesburg, South Africa, Dr. Mistry focused on HIV/AIDS, occupational health, family practice, and sexual and reproductive health. Dr. Mistry also worked at the National Health Service (NHS) in London and with Merck & Co. Inc. dealing with public affairs for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. He holds a Masters degree in health policy and economics from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Andrea Riggs, Senior Advisor
Andrea Riggs has diverse communications experience including consumer and industry PR, corporate reputation, issues/crises management, financial and employee communications. She advises to enterprise software, online travel, financial services, online games and mobile technology organizations. Previously, Andrea spent seven years with IAC/InterActiveCorp and led communications strategy for 20+ acquisitions, two divestitures, six new brand start-ups and three company restructurings. At IAC she served as Director of Public Relations with Expedia, Inc., built and managed the U.S. consumer PR program for Ask.com, and led multi-platform communications strategies for sponsorships with Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Autism Speaks, Web Wise Kids and NASCAR. Prior to IAC Andrea was Vice President of Edelman Public Relations, a technology practice in Chicago. There she oversaw the global Expedia account team and business-to-business technology accounts including Motorolaâ€™s Land Mobile Products Sector. Andrea began her career as Director of Public Relations for the City of Wichita, Kansas, where she reported directly to Mayor Bob Knight. In 2005 Andrea co-founded Yoga to the People (Manhattan, Brooklyn, San Francisco, Berkeley and Seattle), a donations-based yoga studio dedicated to making yoga available to everyone. Andrea holds a BA in Communications, English and Spanish from Wichita State University in Kansas.
Jim Wiatt, Senior Advisor
Alexis Nichols, Director of Operations
Alexis has recruiting, marketing, operations, and project management expertise. Prior to joining Global Philanthropy Group, she worked at a consulting firm for nonprofits where she aided in the overall brand redesign and created a marketing campaign focusing on community outreach and social media. While working for a property development company specializing in affordable housing for families and seniors, Alexis developed innovative solutions for building projects and streamlining business practices. She is a member of Americans for the Arts, a nonprofit organization advancing the arts and arts education. Alexis holds a BA in Communication and Art History from UC Santa Barbara where she graduated with honors and an MBA with an emphasis in Marketing from California Lutheran University. As a part of her graduate studies, Alexis completed the International Business Seminars program in Europe.
Stephanie Green, Director
Stephanie brings experience in campaign development and strategic partnership management. Before joining Global Philanthropy Group, Stephanie worked on the Health Communication & Media Partnerships team at the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation where she implemented national campaigns on HIV/AIDS and other health issues. Stephanie holds a BA in Human Biology from Stanford University, with an area of concentration on health in under-served communities. She also holds a MA in Sociology from Stanford University with a specialization in social movements, comparative politics and social change.
Kelly Chrystal, Senior Analyst
Kelly brings a background in both nonprofit work and social impact consulting. Before joining Global Philanthropy Group, Kelly worked at Sparkplug, a boutique consultancy in Washington, D.C. supporting international development projects for diverse public and private sector clients. She also supported micro-entrepreneurship projects at the Inter-American Development Bank and consulted on Viacom’s integration strategy on USAID’s Global Innovation Exchange platform. Prior to that Kelly lived in Lima, Peru for more than three years while working for a travel industry startup. Kelly’s issue expertise in microfinance also includes a fellowship with Kiva.org and business development work with FINCA International. Kelly holds an MS in Global Business and Finance from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and a BA from New York University.
Kristen Plumberg, Senior Analyst
Kristen brings experience in philanthropy, fundraising, special events, entertainment and communications. While at Human Rights Watch, Kristen served as the event planner for their annual Santa Barbara and Los Angeles Voices for Justice dinners, bringing record-breaking numbers to the cause. Prior to that, as the entertainment relations coordinator for the United Nations Foundation, Kristen cultivated new partnerships in the entertainment community through the Creative Community Outreach Initiative in an effort to bring greater awareness to some of the world's most pressing issues. She is an avid supporter of Didi Hirsch and the ASPCA. Kristen holds a BA in Mass Communication with a minor in Sociology and has completed fundraising coursework at Rice University and entertainment coursework at UCLA.
Pi James, Senior Analyst, Digital
Pi James is a communication, advocacy and digital media specialist, with more than 10 years’ experience working with the United Nations and other international organizations. Most recently Pi worked with UNICEF in New York on an education for peacebuilding program in 14 countries, designing and implementing the global communication and advocacy strategy, managing digital platforms, and translating complex issues into engaging content, including a short film series. A multi-media storyteller and human rights and social justice advocate, Pi has led campaigns on topics including violence against women, education and press freedom, and has been based in Pakistan, China and her home country of Australia. She holds a Bachelors degree in Journalism, a Post-Graduate Diploma in Global Media and Communications, and a Masters degree in International and Community Development.
Szena Dayo, Senior Analyst
Szena comes to Global Philanthropy Group with a background in international health and development. Most recently, Szena was a consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton (BAH) where she assisted hospital systems in developing strategic plans for improved provision of services, and conducted performance assessments of global health programs and policy. As a volunteer consultant for DC Social Innovation Project, she leveraged her expertise in business process redesign to help area non-profits restructure their organizational framework and operations model. Prior to BAH, Szena worked abroad as a research fellow for Ghana Health Service, analyzing health system barriers to contraceptive use among adolescents. She holds a BS in International Health from Georgetown University and is a native French speaker.
Abby Pick, Account Manager
Abby has extensive experience in teaching, counseling, marketing and community outreach. Prior to working with Global Philanthropy Group, Abby was a Professional Relations Consultant in the health care field where she worked to create and maintain a strong referral network of doctors while overseeing marketing for a private practice. Abby has taught in inner-city schools, lead a team in fundraising for individuals affected by cancer, and headed a counseling group for children whose parents were divorcing. Abby holds a BA in Communications and Business from the University of Arizona.
Taylor Dunstan, Analyst
Taylor brings experience in strategy design, fundraising, community outreach and health research. Prior to joining Global Philanthropy Group, Taylor lived in Spain where she worked to design and implement strategies for women’s empowerment and sustainable agriculture programs in Eastern Africa. In addition to her international work, Taylor has developed community partnerships and fundraising initiatives for homeless and underprivileged children in the New York metropolitan area. Taylor holds a BA in Molecular Biology with a concentration in Global Health & Health Policy from Princeton University, where she completed her senior thesis research on human social genomics and high-risk children and their families.
Ryan Kearney, Operations Coordinator
Ryan brings experience from the White House internship program, congressional and presidential campaigns, the film and television industry, and a national news organization. He holds a BA in Communications, with Minors in Political Science and Film & Media Studies from Northwestern University.