Dr. Peter Carlos Okantey, Founder

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Peter holds a Doctorate Degree and a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies in Strategic Leadership from Regent University’s School of  Business and Leadership, Virginia, USA. He holds a Master’s Degree in Management and Organizational Leadership and a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration both from Warner Pacific College.He also holds a teaching certificate from the Presbyterian College of Education in Ghana, West Africa and a Public Administration Diploma from the University of Ghana Business School. In 2009, Peter received the Young Alumni of the Year Award from Warner Pacific College. He is the founder and president of The Okantey Group Companies and the Naa Amerley Palm Education (NAPE) Foundation.  He has several years of professional work experience including, founding and managing a consulting business and non-profit organization, working within the private and non-profit sector in leadership positions in Ghana and the United States. He taught at university level in the United States for several years.  Peter is the founder and president of the Palm Institute of Strategic Leadership.  He serves as a full-time lecturer at the William Ofori-Atta Institute of Integrity at Central University College, Miotso, Ghana.

Lee C. Nusich, Chair, Board of Trustees

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Lee holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University Of Oregon School Of Law and a Bachelor of Science degree in Geological Engineering from the University of North Dakota.  He has practiced law in Portland, Oregon for the past 33 years and is currently affiliated with the law firm of Lane Powell, PC.  His current practice emphasizes commercial litigation and representation of financial institutions.  He has been an active volunteer with several nonprofits over the past 20 years and in that capacity has traveled to Romania, Russia, China, The Philippines, Mongolia and Vietnam.

Matthew S. Essieh, Member, Board of Trustees

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Matt is the President and CEO of EAI Information Systems with offices in both U.S and Ghana.  Since founding EAI in 1989, Matt has worked with some of the leading financial institutions in the United States, applying leadership in strategy and in the areas of technology management.  EAI’s reputation for excellence in its products and services is a direct result of Matt’s personal commitment to the values of honesty, leadership, integrity and responsiveness to customers. Matt’s career in banking and finance spans over 20 years. Prior to EAI he was the Chief Financial Officer of Westmark, a financial services firm catering to national and community banks. Matt is active in leadership roles in a number of industry and public service organizations, and has been a speaker and writer on banking technology.  He is a founding board member of a community bank in Oregon, a former board chair of The World Affairs Council of Oregon, and current board member of Portland Opera. Matt has actively sponsored and founded community projects in education and healthcare in Ghana. Through his charitable work, he has built social and infrastructure services in rural Ghana.  Among the projects he has commissioned and managed are the construction of a dormitory to accommodate over 100 girls at a Senior Secondary School and the construction of a 40 bed hospital ward and a maternity ward to service a district population of about 78,000.  He has also actively sponsored students in higher education in Ghana and the U.S. Born in Ghana, he holds BA and MBA from Southern Oregon University.

Beth Okantey, Secretary, Board of Trustees

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Beth holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work with a minor in Sociology from Pacific Lutheran University (1996) and a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Walla Walla University (2001).  Beth has been working in the area of social work for more than 20 years.  Within the US, she worked with homeless adults assisting in an employment and work readiness program, with chronically mentally ill adults assisting them to live semi-independently, in the area of child welfare and in public health providing counseling for low income pregnant women and helping to implement a grassroots community development project.   She also spent 2.5 years in Malawi, S. Africa and 1 year in Ghana, W. Africa as a US Peace Corps Volunteer and 1.5 years in London, UK working within child welfare.  Currently, she teaches social work courses online for Portland State University, Ashford University and University of Alabama.  She also developed and coordinates a program for social work students to complete their practicum hours in various organizations in Ghana.  She has supervised 47 students participate from 13 universities.

Annie Robertson, Member, Board of Trustees

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Annie practices business law at Lane Powell PC. Annie works with a variety of transactional matters including general business and corporate law, with a particular emphasis on mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance, entity formation, equity offerings and debt financing.  She holds a Juris Doctorate degree from Willamette University College of Law and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Sociology from Central Washington University.   Annie has been involved with several nonprofits over the years, including an organization that finds homes for retired racing greyhounds and an organization that provides solar panels to hospitals and schools in Africa.

Caleb Pilling,  Member, Board of Trustees

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Caleb works for Geffen Mesher & Company P.C. providing audit, tax and consulting services for clients in the manufacturing, software and construction industries. Caleb is a licensed certified public accountant and a member of the Oregon Society of Certified Public Accountants. Before joining Geffen Mesher, Caleb was an equity analyst intern at Chinook Capital Management. While at Chinook Capital Management, he assisted senior equity analysts in managing the Chinook Emerging Growth Fund, including building valuation models, monitoring buy opportunities and writing buy recommendations for equity analysts. He earned a BA degree in Accounting and a BA degree in Business Administration from George Fox University where he graduated magna cum laude in 2007. Outside of work, Caleb is active in youth ministries at Sunset Presbyterian Church and enjoys hiking, fly-fishing and golfing.

Brenda Mc Laughlin,  Member, Board of Trustees

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Brenda, a pediatric nurse by profession, retired from Portland State University Foundation in 2014 where she supported the Chief Financial Officer and the Accounting Team.  At PSU Foundation much of her time was spent managing the scholarship module. This proved to her what a difference a scholarship could make to a student’s life.

Brenda has had the opportunity to live in many countries in the world and her interest in Ghana stems from her daughter’s experiences there. In retirement she continues to volunteer for local non-profit organizations.