The NAFSA annual election concluded at midnight on September 15, 2023. I would like to express my deep appreciation for all members who participated in the election by voting, nominating colleagues, or participating in the application and vetting process. I am pleased to announce that the nominees for the national leadership positions have been elected by the membership at large.
I also want to thank the member leaders on the Governance Committee and the Leadership Development Committee tasked with identifying and vetting potential candidates under the bylaws. These committee members work diligently over the course of the year to review the open positions, seek nominations, and interview candidates to ensure diverse perspectives and skills are represented on the slate.
Congratulations to all of the 2024 elected leaders. We thank you for your service over the next several years to advance the strategic plan and the work of the association. I also want to urge all members to begin thinking now about nominating a colleague or applying for a leadership position when the next call for nominations opens in January.
On September 29, 2023, the chair of NAFSA’s Governance Committee, Julie Sinclair, reported the election results to the Board of Directors and the Leadership Development Committee. A truly impressive group of leaders will begin service in January 2024.
NAFSA President and Chair of the Board of Directors
NAFSA Vice President, Scholarship & Institutional Strategy
Vice President, Academic Student Affairs and Global Engagement, Wayne State University
Ahmad Ezzeddine is responsible for Wayne State University’s efforts to support students throughout the student life cycle, from their initial engagement with Wayne State to graduation and beyond. His portfolio includes enrollment management, student success, educational outreach, the Transfer Student Success Center, community college partnerships and satellite campuses, the Office of International Programs, and several student-facing academic services offices, departments and programs within the Office of the Provost. Additionally, he oversees Executive and Professional Development, the office responsible for the university’s training, consulting, and continuing education services.
As Wayne State’s senior international officer, Ezzeddine leads the university’s global engagement, which includes Global Learning for All, an initiative to develop students’ global competencies by providing them with experiences locally, virtually, or abroad. He has developed partnerships with institutions in the Middle East, Latin America, Korea, India, and China, which have led to innovative initiatives and new educational and research opportunities for students and faculty. A member of the Board of Directors of NAFSA since 2019, he was elected NAFSA’s vice president for scholarship and institutional strategy in 2020.
Members-at-Large, NAFSA Board of Directors, 2023–2025
Director of Talent and Culture, CET Academic Programs (Academic Travel Abroad Inc.)
Elena Anderson specializes in global workforce development, and her work as director of talent and culture at CET Academic Programs addresses global human resources; global mobility; diversity, equity, and inclusion; and duty of care, among other issues impacting global business operations. She previously served as a director at the Brookings Institution, a NAFSA staff member and intern, and an international educator at the University of Alabama-Birmingham. Currently serving as board chair for Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE), Anderson also served in several NAFSA leadership roles with different entities, including the Leadership Development Committee (LDC), the Knowledge Community for International Student and Scholar Services (KCISSS), the 2008 Annual Conference Committee, and the Trainer Corps. Anderson brings member-leader experience from other associations, such as the Society of Human Resource Management and the Worldwide Employee Relocation Council, where she received two Distinguished Service Awards. Anderson is a proud alumna of Loyola University New Orleans and George Washington University, and she has a passion for creating welcoming and inclusive spaces.
Vice President, Strategic Impact and Planning, Lumina Foundation
Courtney Brown is the vice president of strategic impact and planning at the Lumina Foundation, the nation’s largest private foundation focused specifically on increasing U.S. citizens’ postsecondary success. As the foundation’s chief data and research officer, Brown oversees its efforts in the areas of strategic planning, research, evaluation, data, learning, and philanthropic practice. She also leads Lumina’s international engagement efforts. Brown has decades of experience and is a frequent speaker and writer on postsecondary systems and strategic planning. She received her BA from James Madison University and MA and PhD from the University of Virginia.
Former U.S. Ambassador; former President of the American University in Cairo
Following graduation from Dartmouth College, Francis Ricciardone studied and taught as a Fulbright scholar in Italy and later taught at an international school in Iran. He later entered the U.S. Foreign Service, culminating with leadership of the U.S. embassies in the Philippines, Egypt, Afghanistan, and Turkey. He headed the Rafik Hariri Center for Middle East Policy at the Atlantic Council before serving as president of The American University in Cairo. He consults on private international business affairs and serves on the governing boards of several not-for-profit international educational and cultural organizations.
Chair-elect, Education Abroad Knowledge Community
Director, Critical Language Scholarship Program, American Councils for International Education
Becca AbuRakia-Einhorn is the director of the Critical Language Scholarship Program at American Councils for International Education. Prior to this role, she served as the manager of education abroad and international fellowships at Gallaudet University. She holds a BA from Pomona College, an MA in international affairs from American University’s School of International Service, and an MPA from American University’s School of Public Affairs. AbuRakia-Einhorn is a NAFSA Academy for International Education graduate. She is currently completing her EdD in higher education administration at the George Washington University. In 2019, she was named the Diversity Abroad Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion in International Education (EDIIE) Rising Star and the NAFSA Rising Star Young Leader.
Chair-elect, International Education Leadership Knowledge Community
Associate Vice President, International Education and Global Engagement, Shoreline Community College
Samira Pardanani leads a comprehensive international education department at Shoreline Community College, located just north of Seattle, Washington. In this role, she oversees international recruitment, admissions, academic and university transfer advising, study and teach abroad, international partnerships, and global engagement. Pardanani serves on the president's executive leadership team and has previously been tapped to oversee the entire student services division at the college. Prior to Shoreline, Pardanani worked at the University of Michigan and Brown University. As a result, she has a unique perspective on the role of the senior international officer at diverse institutions. Pardanani grew up in India and has also lived in Germany and Austria.
Chair-elect, International Enrollment Management Knowledge Community
Manager, EducationUSA Global Services, Institute for International Education (IIE)
Adina Archer works on the EducationUSA Global Services team at IIE, where she oversees the Regional Education Advising Coordinators (REACs) for the EducationUSA network. Archer has over 20 years of experience in international higher education, primarily in graduate enrollment management related to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). She previously served as the director of graduate enrollment at George Washington University’s School of Engineering and Applied Science and later as the university’s assistant provost for international enrollment. Archer holds degrees in organizational communication, organizational management, and human and organizational learning. She lives in Washington, D.C., with her family and their two cats.
Chair-elect, International Student and Scholar Services Knowledge Community
Immigration Specialist, North Carolina State University and University of Washington-Bothell
Machelle Allman has devoted her entire professional career of over 25 years to international education. After 5 years in international admissions, she switched focus to international student advising and has served students in private colleges, community colleges, and large and small public research institutions. She has served in leadership positions at the state and regional levels and served at the national level in the chair stream for NAFSA’s Region I. She is a past coach for the NAFSA Academy for International Education and a trainer for its Management Development Program (MDP). She presents and trains frequently on regulatory and other advising topics, including F-1 regulations, employment issues, best practices in international student advising, and leadership.
Chair-elect, Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship Knowledge Community
Executive Director, Go Global NC
As the executive director for Go Global NC, Meredith Henderson provides leadership, oversight, and strategic direction to the organization; builds and leads local and global collaborative efforts to optimize global engagement; and oversees programs for educators and policy, community and business leaders. She is a member of the N.C. Coalition for Global Competitiveness, the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, the Society for Intercultural Education Training and Research USA (SIETAR-USA), and NAFSA. She served on NAFSA’s Professional Competencies Commission (2021–22), as the Intercultural Communication and Training (ICT) Network leader (2018-2021), and is a member of Trainer Corps. Henderson holds an EdD an and MA from North Carolina State University and a BA from Mount Holyoke College.
Chair-elect, Leadership Development Committee
Program Manager, International Student Services, The Ohio State University
Amanda Yusko started her journey in international education by chance as a work-study student in the Office of International Programs at Otterbein University and immediately knew that this would be her life path. Throughout her career, Amanda has been actively involved in NAFSA, from serving on the Region VI team as membership coordinator and Secretary, Ohio state representative, and chair stream, to sitting on the Leadership Development Committee and, most recently, serving as a coach and chair for the NAFSA Academy for International Education.
Chair-elect, Member Engagement Committee
Associate Director, International Student Services, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech)
Vivian Yamoah has been in the field of international higher education for almost 20 years. She is the associate director for international student services at Virginia Tech. She is currently member-at-large on the Member Engagement Committee. As a member of NAFSA’s Trainer Corps, Yamoah has presented workshops at the local, regional, and national levels. She has her BA in Asian studies and foreign affairs from the University of Virginia and her MA in cross-cultural communication and international management from Newcastle University in the United Kingdom. She is currently working on her PhD in higher education at Morgan State University.