Kirsten L Muth- New JLI CEO

Kirsten Laursen Muth

Chief Executive Officer

Kirsten is JLI’s Chief Executive Officer. Kirsten’s previous positions include Special Advisor for Leadership Development and Senior Director for International Programs at Episcopal Relief & Development; Deputy Director of Programs at Church World Service; and Deputy Director of Training and Communication Education at Helen Keller International. She has collaborated with multiple UN agencies and has worked with government, non-profit, education, and faith organizations in more than 40 countries. Kirsten holds a Bachelor of Science, Foreign Service from Georgetown University, a Master’s Degree in Social Anthropology and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. She has also studied textile design at Parson’s School of Design and the School of Visual Arts, and design fabrics. She and her spouse, Mike, live in upstate New York in an antique house with three pets and numerous wild visitors.



Olivia Wilkinson

Director of Research

Olivia Wilkinson is a qualitative researcher with expertise in religion, secularism, and international humanitarian action and development. She completed her PhD from Trinity College Dublin on secular humanitarian organizations’ interactions with local religion following Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. She has been published in academic journals and written NGO reports and policy briefs. Her research has covered gender mainstreaming, education in emergencies, humanitarian principles, ethical research standards, refugee response, and most recently localization of humanitarian action.

She has been a Visiting Scholar at Columbia and the University of the Philippines Diliman, and received her undergraduate and Master’s degrees from the University of Cambridge and Universite catholique de Louvain respectively.

Stacy Nam

Stacy Nam

Senior Programs and Knowledge Manager

Stacy joined the Joint Learning Initiative on Faith & Local Communities in 2016 supporting learning hubs and adding capacity to implement the JLI’s evidence strategy. Currently, she manages programs, grants and communications. She is interested in how local communities develop through a holistic systems perspective. She has her Masters in Public Health from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health focused on social and behavior change and policy. Her prior experience was in community health education and chronic disease prevention.

Rima Alshawkani

Rima Alshawkani

Project and Finance Assistant

Rima assisted in establishing and managing the Acacia Foundation in Yemen for development, a non-profit organization focused on preservation, education, and promotion of arts. She also founded and supervised a recreational program named Pay it Forward to serve the youth, poor and disabled in Yemen. In recent years in the United States, she collaborated with different organizations to promote fundraising efforts and campaigns to help the people of Yemen. Rima’s educational background is in Finance. She formerly worked as a budget analyst and financial assistant. Rima is excited to join JLI and continue her work in the dynamic non-profit sector.

Jean Duff

Jean Duff

Strategic Advisor

Ms Duff is currently JLI’s Strategic Advisor. Jean served as President of the JLI between 2012-2020. JLI’s goal is to equip policymakers and practitioners with the information they need to scale up faith engagement for the common good. In 2008, she co-founded the Center for Interfaith Action on Global Poverty at Washington National Cathedral. Previously, she led the Cathedral’s global poverty program as Managing Director of the Center for Global Justice and Reconciliation. In 2008, she co-convened the Women, Faith and Development Alliance. Ms Duff holds graduate degrees in Clinical Psychology (University College Dublin) and in Epidemiology (Columbia University) She is a Visiting Research Fellow at Trinity College, Dublin and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.