Board of Directors
David Hoffman began serving as the president of the Raising Haiti Foundation in 2016. He is a retired entrepreneur, having sold his interests in his real estate development and marketing companies in 2006. In 2012, David created and led the Education Under Fire human rights initiative to help defend the Baha'i Institute for Higher Education (BIHI) from coordinated and sustained attacks in its country of origin.
David is the founding board member of Partners in Racial Justice whose mission is to engage in creative ways to bring all people together in the pursuit of racial justice, healing, and unity.
Jean Edy Lesperance
Jean Edy Lesperance was born in Haiti and moved to the US as a young adult. He has been a Board Member of the Raising Haiti Foundation since 2021 and is also a member of Our Lady Queen of Peace’s Haiti Committee. He is a visa analyst for the Department of State with fifteen years of experience working in the fields of counterterrorism, cyber and counterintelligence. Previously, Jean worked at the US Patent & Trademark Office as a Patent Examiner reviewing patents for inventions in the field of display technologies and input devices.
Jean is inspired and encouraged by his faith to be a positive force in his community and to anyone he comes in contact with. In his free time, he likes taking long walks, meeting his friends, and playing soccer.
Sue Carlson, M.D.Secretary & Executive Director
Sue Carlson, M.D.
Sue Carlson, M.D., a retired ophthalmologist, has worked with the people of Haiti for the past 25 years. She has been the chair of the Haiti Committee at Our Lady Queen of Peace church in Arlington, Virginia since 2000, helping support the education, school lunch, agro-forestry, clean water, sanitation and solar programs in its twin parish, St. Joseph of Medor.
She has been the volunteer executive director of the Raising Haiti Foundation since 2017, assisting rural Haitian communities to sustainably improve livelihoods and the environment.
Timote Georges is Haitian. He studied natural resources and peace at the United Nations-mandated University for Peace in Costa Rica. While there he co-authored the book “The Fabric of Community” and volunteered with an association of coffee producers and with tree nurseries focused on carbon sequestration. In 2002 he joined “Alfa-Economic”, the Haitian presidential program that initiated a literacy campaign to alleviate socio-economic deprivation in the Gonaives area.
He is co-founder and director of the Smallholder Farmers Alliance, a Haitian community based grass-roots non-profit organization that seeks durable solutions to improved livelihoods of small-scale farmers in Haiti and beyond.
Since 2008, he has been deeply engaged in environmental rehabilitation, natural resource management, and community based developmental capacity building.
Marlene Estime McCray
Marlene Estime McCray has been on the Raising Haiti Foundation Board of Directors since 2021. She was born in Haiti. Marlene attended NYU School of Respiratory Therapy and worked as a Respiratory Therapist. In addition, she graduated from Fordham University with a Master of Science in Human Resource Development. During her travels Marlene was inspired in her journey to connect wellness initiatives and education directives to support the people of Haiti. Marlene began an education funding resource initiative for Western Haiti in L'artibonite and Pestel Grand'Anse for over 100 elementary school children. Marlene continues to cultivate purposeful partnerships to revitalize communities of Haiti for development, for change, for Bon!!
Alexandra Sperling (born Chérestal) was born in Les Cayes, Haiti. She obtained a law degree from the Faculté de Droit et des Sciences Economiques of Haiti. She moved to Silver Spring, Maryland in November 1991 and has been working for the World Bank, in Washington, DC, since May 1992, currently as a Legal Operations Officer for countries throughout Africa.
Alexandra is married to a US citizen and is the mother of two children. She is currently living in McLean, Virginia and loves spending time with family and friends, gardening (though challenged by a snake phobia), cooking, traveling and everything fun.
Bonnie Carlson has edited documents for Raising Haiti Foundation for the last several years. She is an Assistant Professor at Mercer University School of Law, where she teaches family law, law of lawyering, and poverty law, and has created and directs the domestic violence clinic. She came to Mercer from Georgetown University Law Center, where she was a Clinical Teaching Fellow in the Domestic Violence Clinic. In that position, she co-taught the clinic seminar and supervised clinic students in their representation of domestic violence victims in Civil Protection Order litigation. Prior to working at Georgetown, Bonnie was a Training and Technical Assistance Staff Attorney with the American Bar Association Commission on Domestic & Sexual Violence. (ABA CDSV) In that position, she wrote training curricula and publications for attorneys practicing domestic violence law around the country. Prior to this position at the ABA CDSV, she was a family law staff attorney for the Alexandria office of Legal Services of Northern Virginia (LSNV) for four years representing victims of domestic violence.
Upon her graduation from The George Washington University Law School, Bonnie was awarded the National Association of Women Lawyers Outstanding Law Graduate Award for her work with domestic violence victims as well as her academic success. In 2015, she was honored by the Alexandria Bar Association with the Don F. Mela Award for her service to the community. She previously taught Legal Research and Writing to first-year law students at the George Washington University Law School for three years. Bonnie grew up in Arlington, Virginia, and earned a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies and Women’s Studies from the University of Virginia.
Patrick Carlson is a user experience designer with fifteen years of experience in communications, marketing, and visual design. He supports Raising Haiti Foundation’s web and digital fundraising efforts.
Grace Folsom is a visual artist with proficiencies in graphics, writing and editing, and a theatre and improvisation artist, educator and coach. She is inspired by the work and thrilled to be supporting the Raising Haiti Foundation!
Jeff James joined the Peace Corps after graduating from the University of Wisconsin. He has lived in Kenya and Ghana and has sixty (!) years of interest in developing nations and greater equity among the Global North and South. He is inspired by the work of Raising Haiti Foundation
Nick Miller provided legal consultation to Raising Haiti Foundation from its inception in 2014 until he retired from the legal profession in 2023. He continues on the Raising Haiti team as a general consultant.