LIRS Senior Leadership Team
Vice President for Human Resources Geri O’Donoghue has committed her career to helping build strong organizations by creating welcoming, diverse, and inclusive environments that foster employee collaboration and growth. She has spent most of her career working in nonprofit organizations, where she has contributed to the mission of building a healthy and strong society that celebrates everyone. Geri has a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley and a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University in Human Resources and Organizational Development. She is the mother to two amazing little girls that remind her to keep an open mind and never stop learning.
F. Andrew Pepito
Mr. Pepito has 20-plus years of executive experience. He returned to LIRS as Chief Financial Officer after working with the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, a government instrumentality recognized as one of the top 10 international think tanks in the world, serving as Chief Financial Officer. Prior to that, Pepito worked in the DMV area as Vice President for Achieving the Dream, the Sr. Director of the Bainum Family Foundation and Vice President for Finance and Operations for the U.S. Grains Council. Before joining the nonprofit world, he held key finance positions with Fortune 500 corporations in Southern California. He has an MBA from Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business. He was a recipient of an international traineeship program at PriceWaterhouse Coopers in the U.K. and has completed continuing education in Investment and Risk Simulation at the Stanford Center for Professional Studies.
He is passionate about civic involvement and has held many volunteer work and leadership positions in local school boards, parish councils, and community-based organizations in the Silver Spring and Washington, DC area. Pepito, his wife, and 10-year old son live in the Silver Spring area of Maryland. The family enjoys traveling and has visited more than 30 countries.
Marc Soloweszyk serves as Chief of Staff at Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service. In his role, he focuses on the implementation of the strategic plan and making the organization function as effectively as possible. As the son of a refugee, he is passionate about the work LIRS does on behalf the most vulnerable. He has over 15 years of experience in both the nonprofit and corporate worlds, including positions at the NAACP and the Foundation Fighting Blindness. He is the proud father of three wonderful children.
Andrew G. Steele
As Vice President for Development and Mobilization, Andrew G. Steele leads a dynamic team responsible for all development, fundraising, church relations, and outreach efforts. Prior to joining LIRS, Andrew was the Assistant Vice President for Advancement & Director of Campaigns at his alma mater, Wittenberg University. Before serving in that capacity, Andrew was the Director for Global Mission Funding at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), overseeing $30+ million of revenue as part of a successful five-year, $250 million comprehensive campaign. An avid traveler, Andrew annually returns to South Africa and Lesotho where he once lived and co-founded BLOOM Africa, a 501(c)(3) organization.
Erin Taylor is proud to serve as Chief Communications Officer at Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, a position that allows her to combine her decades of communications expertise with her commitment to helping refugees and other vulnerable groups. Before joining LIRS, Erin was Acting Vice President of Communications at the international, humanitarian non-profit Save the Children. Erin has also previously served as Director of Communications at Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs. She holds a Master of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and a bachelor’s degree in International Relations from George Washington University.
Krish O’Mara Vignarajah
Krish is the President and CEO of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service. She previously served in the Obama White House as Policy Director for First Lady Michelle Obama and at the State Department as Senior Advisor under Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Secretary of State John Kerry.
Krish has committed her career to public service because she knows how differently life could have turned out. Krish was nine months old when she and her family escaped a country on the brink of civil war and built a life in Maryland. Her parents came to this country with no jobs and $200 in their pockets.
Read her full biography here.
Lee Williams joined LIRS as the Vice President for Programs in August 2020. Before coming to LIRS, Lee was Senior Vice President at the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants. During his tenure at USCRI, Lee was responsible for its refugee, unaccompanied children, and human trafficking victim assistance programs, MIS, and field office operations. Lee also served as Chief Financial Officer for seven years. Before USCRI, Lee was the Executive Director of the International Institute of Akron, Ohio, a nonprofit that serves the refugee and immigrant communities of northeast Ohio. Lee’s earlier career was in financial services in the U.S. and Europe. He holds a Graduate Certificate of Non-Profit Management from Case Western Reserve University, a Master’s degree in International Management from The Thunderbird School of Global Management, and a Bs.L. in Arabic from Georgetown University.
- Controller — Allison Como
- Vice President for Children and Family Services — Lorie Davidson
- Director for Grants Finance — Chris Bizimungu
- Director for IT — Maria Maskell
- Director for Loans Collections — Andrew Rhabb
- Director for Public Policy — Jill Marie Bussey
- Director for Refugee and Migrant Services — Megan Bracy
- Programs Director — Saba Berhane
- Director for Public Relations — Timothy Young
- Director of Major and Planned Giving — Beth Nelson Chase
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LIRS BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The LIRS Board of Directors is composed of members who have knowledge of and commitment to refugees and immigrants. We believe that strength is found in diversity and pride ourselves on prioritizing inclusion of refugees and immigrant leaders.
LIRS President's Council
Established in 2020, the LIRS President’s Council is an advisory committee that includes business and nonprofit leaders, policy experts and advocates, and faith leaders of varied backgrounds and sector experience.
The Council provides LIRS President & CEO Krish O’Mara Vignarajah with strategic advice related to the organization’s key priority areas and its efforts to effectively fulfill its mission and vision.