The Refugee Hub is able to have the impact it does because of the time, commitment, expertise, and energy of the people who connect with our work. Volunteers are at the heart of what we do, and we must first and foremost acknowledge the contributions of our volunteer students, lawyers, academics and community members, who are all part of the Refugee Hub team!
PROFESSOR / MANAGING DIRECTOR
Jennifer Bond founded the University of Ottawa’s Refugee Hub in 2012, after joining the uOttawa Law Faculty in 2010. She holds degrees in law, literature, and business. She completed her graduate work at the Yale Law School as a John Peters Humphrey Fellow in International Human Rights Law. Recognized for her expertise in the field, Jennifer served as Special Advisor to Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship on Canada’s Syrian Refugee Initiative in 2015-2016. She has also provided strategic advice to Canada’s Ambassador to the United Nations and the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR); managed a grass-roots non-profit organization; worked as a strategic analyst at a leading consulting agency; practiced law at a major Canadian firm; served with the UNHCR in Damascus, Syria; and sat on the founding national executive of the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers (CARL). Most recently, as the Chair of the Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative (GRSI), Jennifer has pioneered exporting Canada’s private refugee sponsorship program to countries interested in implementing their own community-based sponsorship schemes. Jennifer loves working with alongside her talented and ambitious team to further justice and rights for refugees locally and globally.
Amy Bartlett co-leads the Refugee Hub with Professor Jennifer Bond, serving as Director to provide strong strategic, programmatic and operational leadership for the activities of the Hub. A lawyer by trade and a Maritimer by birth, Amy brings to the team almost 15 years of expertise in the international development sector, with a passion for social justice, organization building, accountability and governance, civil society strengthening, mobilization and multi-stakeholder partnerships. Previous roles include Executive Director of RESULTS Canada; Global Coordinator of the Open Forum for CSO Development Effectiveness in Brussels, Belgium; Manager of the Civil Society Index programme at CIVICUS in Johannesburg, South Africa; and Community Facilitator with CUSO in Huancavelica, Peru. Amy is thrilled to be collaborating with such a dedicated team at the Refugee Hub, and to be working closely with this vibrant community of lawyers, academics, students, CSO partners, front-line workers, community leaders and other stakeholders—all of whom are passionately committed to making the world a better place for refugees.
SENIOR LEGAL OFFICER
Ania Kwadrans is a Senior Legal Officer at the Refugee Hub. She joined the Hub to help establish and run the national Refugee Sponsorship Support Program (SSP). While continuing to provide strategic and technical support to the SSP, Ania’s work has expanded to sharing Canada’s refugee sponsorship model internationally through the Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative and conducting legal and policy research related to a variety of Hub initiatives. Before joining the Hub, Ania worked with Amnesty International, engaging in strategic litigation on human rights cases before courts of all levels, including the Supreme Court of Canada, and advocacy before Canadian Parliamentary Committees as well as the United Nations. Ania holds a J.D. degree from Osgoode Hall Law School and is called to the Ontario bar. She is delighted work with an organization that connects high-level, timely research to cutting-edge programming with real impact on expanding refugee protection around the world.
SENIOR LEGAL ADVISOR
Jessica Walsh is a Senior Legal Officer with the Global Refugee Sponsorship Initiative. Her work involves supporting other countries to establish community sponsorship of refugees programs. Jessica joined the Hub following a placement as a visiting lawyer with the Refugee and Migrant Rights Programme of Lawyers for Human Rights in Johannesburg, South Africa. She articled with the Office of the Children’s Lawyer in Toronto, where she represented children in family court matters and worked on a variety of legal issues concerning children. She has also worked as a researcher and analyst in public health, social policy and international human rights law. Jessica holds BCL and LLB degrees from McGill University and is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada. She additionally received an MA in Public Policy and Ageing from King’s College London (UK) and an Honours BSocSc in International Studies and Modern Languages from the University of Ottawa.
Emilie Coyle is the Director of the Refugee Sponsorship Support Program with the Refugee Hub. She has over 15 years of leadership and management experience in the non-profit sector, primarily in immigrant and refugee-serving organizations. She worked as a Research Coordinator, Community Developer and Project Manager before becoming a lawyer. Her experience in the settlement sector has taken her from Canada’s west (Edmonton) to the east (Halifax) and most recently to Ottawa, where she worked as the Senior Director of Newcomer Services at the YMCA-YWCA. After her call to the bar, Emilie practiced family law, criminal law and immigration and refugee law at a boutique law firm in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. She holds a J.D. from Dalhousie, an M.Ed. in Adult Education from Mount Saint Vincent University, and a bilingual undergraduate honours degree in International Studies. She has been a private refugee sponsor since 2009, with three different sponsoring groups, was co-founder and chair of the CARL student chapter at Dalhousie, and has worked as volunteer counsel for refugee claimants. The Hub allows Emilie to utilize her legal background in the service of the world’s most vulnerable people.
Kailee Brennan works on the Hub Operations team as the Outreach Officer. Her portfolio includes both Communications and Fundraising. Joining the Refugee Hub after frontline work in refugee shelter management, she brings a unique, hands-on perspective to the team. Kailee holds a Master’s degree in Refugee Protection and Forced Migration from the University of London. She has a passion for working on refugee and newcomer issues in her community through volunteer work and networking. She enjoys being part of the vibrant Hub team and working alongside the program streams to best amplify and promote their exciting work.
LEGAL AND RESEARCH
Nathan Benson is the Legal and Research Director of the Refugee Hub, providing leadership to the Hub’s research, policy and clinical initiatives. Along with Professor Jennifer Bond, he leads the Refugee Law Research Team, the Refugee & Criminal Law Clinic at the uOttawa Faculty of Law, and the Hub’s domestic and international policy work. He joined the Refugee Hub as Director of the Refugee Sponsorship Support Program (SSP) in 2016, having previously clerked at the Federal Court of Canada, practiced law at the federal Department of Justice, and held senior communications and strategic advisor roles prior to attending law school. Nathan holds a law degree from the University of Ottawa and a Masters in Political Science (Carleton), and is a member of the bar in Ontario. He is excited to be pioneering many new and timely research initiatives on behalf of the Hub team and in partnership with many key players in the field of refugee law.
OTTAWA SPONSORSHIP SUPPORT PROGRAM COORDINATOR
Chiedza Pasipanodya works in two different roles as the Ottawa Coordinator for the Refugee Sponsorship Support Program (SSP) and the Operations Coordinator for the Hub. She has had experience supporting privately sponsored refugees as well as Government Assisted Refugees in Ottawa and is passionate about refugee resettlement. Chiedza holds a BA (High Hons) in International Development Studies from the University of Saskatchewan and a Masters in Global Development Studies from Queen's University. Chiedza is thrilled to be working with a passionate and dedicated team.
Harriet Nijboer joined the Refugee Hub in June 2018 as Executive Coordinator to Prof. Jennifer Bond. She comes to the role with over a decade of experience in the legal and administrative fields. After completing her legal training in The Netherlands, Harriet moved to Canada to complete an LL.M. at the University of Toronto, focussing on human rights and immigration policy. She has spent the last several years honing her organizational and coordination skills at corporate law firms across Toronto. Complementing this legal and professional expertise, Harriet is also a committed social justice volunteer—in particular, her work with homeless outreach and a women’s legal clinic shaped Harriet’s conviction that strong supportive communities, both locally and globally, are essential to creating a world that is safe and provides opportunities for everyone.
DIRECTOR OF FINANCE AND OPERATIONS
Anna Campos has recently joined the Hub as Director of Finance and Operations, following her work with the Canadian Council for International Co-operation, where she made her name in the Development sector spearheading transformative initiatives as head of administration. Anna brings an international perspective to her management responsibilities, having previously worked for the American Consulate General in Jerusalem and Canadian Embassy in Tel Aviv, and is excited about supporting the Hub's domestic and international work through operational renewal. With academic credentials in Economics, French Literature and Public Administration, as well as an unbounded interest in all things cultural and linguistic, she is looking forward to working with the great team and supporting the important work of the Hub.
Rebecca Dickey is the Research Coordinator working in partnership with the Legal and Research Director, Nathan Benson. Her role involves both substantive and coordinative work, as she supports the Refugee Law Research Team and various aspects of the Hub’s research and clinic portfolio. Rebecca holds a Honours Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Criminology from the University of Toronto. She is currently in her second year of the English Common Law Program at the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law and is specializing in International Law. Prior to attending law school, she worked in Washington, DC for the Public Defenders Service, where she engaged with issues of domestic human rights law and criminal defence. She enjoys working with an amazing team and providing support during a key time of policy developments in refugee law.
DIRECTOR OF INNOVATION AND DEVELOPMENT
Tara is the Director of the Refugee Hub’s Innovation Lab (HIL), providing strategy and support to the HIL’s emergent and responsive programming. She brings a well-rounded and global perspective of the non-profit, social enterprise and social innovation sectors to her work at the Refugee Hub. She has held various leadership roles in the international development, international policy and programming, community health and development, and social enterprise sectors in Latin America, Asia, USA and Canada. Previous roles include Sr. Director of Planning and Growth at United Nations Association in Canada, Executive Director, EcoEquitable, Program Manager at Carlington Community Heath Centre, and Peace Corps Volunteer, in Danli Honduras. Tara holds a Master’s degree, International Development and Globalization from the University of Ottawa, and a B.S., Communication and a B.A., German Studies. Tara is thrilled to join the Hub team and dedicate herself to the social justice and human rights movement for refugees.
Athavarn is the communications associate at the Refugee Hub for the 2018/19 academic year. He is currently pursuing his Honours Bachelors of Social Science with a specialization in Sociology and a minor in Law at the University of Ottawa as a McCall MacBain Loran Scholar 16’. He has several years’ experience working in community building and human rights activism. Before joining the Hub, Athavarn worked as the alumni relations coordinator for a local youth program called Youth Futures and as a summer assistant at a Montreal-based educational technology company. In addition, he is the project manager for P.E.A.R.L (People for Equality and Relief in Lanka), a human rights advocacy organization based in Toronto and Washington, DC. Athavarn also sits on the Board of Directors for Amnesty International Canada (English Speaking).