2017 Hubert H. Humphrey Fellows

Juan Carlos Banda

Juan Carlos Banda headshot

Juan was born in Rengo, Chile. In 1994 he graduated as a second lieutenant from the Oficial Carabineros School. After three years of working in different positions he began specializing in the investigation of traffic accidents, working for eight years in the metropolitan region and later in the Antofagasta region. In 2002 he started his studies in engineering and business administration, graduating in 2006 with honors. He went on to pursue a master's degree in business administration at the Catholic University of the North. Upon receiving that degree, he worked as a professor at two universities in the areas of human resources and administration. Professionally, he has worked as a lieutenant, captain, major, and lieutenant colonel for the Carabineros, the Chilean national police force. Juan has received recognition for his work in the development of social and institutional projects. He temporarily retired from his career to pursue the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program to study English and human resources. 

Alireza Bayat

Alireza Bayat headshot

Alireza works for the Iranian National Center of Addiction Studies (INCAS) and has worked closely with the Sexual Health Group at the Tehran University of Medical Science to research and coordinate the delivery of sexual health services for vulnerable groups, especially drug users. He has done considerable research in this field, from which he has developed and implemented a community-based skill-building approach to reduce sexual risk behaviors for women with substance abuse disorders (Iranian National Center of Addiction Studies (INCAS), Institution of Risk Behavior Reduction, Tehran University of Medical Sciences). 

Zenaida Martinez Blanco

Zenaida Martinez Blanco headshot

Zenaida was born and raised on a cattle ranch in Huatusco, Veracruz, Mexico. She attended Veracruzana University in Xalapa, Veracruz City and graduated with her degree as a registered nurse. Inspired by her grandmother, who was a midwife in the community, she completed her Birth Doula Certification by DONA International (Association of American Doulas) in Vancouver, Canada. In 2013 she completed a master's degree as a certified childbirth educator by Lamaze International in Anahuac Mexico North University in Mexico City. Since 2014 she has been a nurse childbirth educator, specializing in childbirth education and labor support. She estimates that she has prepared over 6,000 women, couples, and siblings for childbirth and has assisted hundreds of women and couples through childbirth. She co-authored books for parents and professionals on humanized childbirth and obstretic violence. She has also developed teaching materials for birth classes and has produced several videos for educators, doulas, nurses, doctors, psychologists, pediatricians, and gynecologists for prevention and treatment of traumatic childbirth. She is the co-founder of the International Center for Humanized Birth Studies in Oaxaca City and has traveled throughout Mexico and to the Amazonian jungle in Colombia to train gynecologists, nurses, pediatricians, and midwives to decrease the rate of C-sections and traumatic births. She is the founder and director of the Oaxaca Edu Perinatal Center, now Maternas Center, to promote the defense and care of women during the procreative process and the formation of the family. Zenaida is also an instructor for psycho-phylactic birth at La Salle University. At the World Health Day Ceremony on April 7, 2017, Zenaida received a gold medal from the President of the Republic of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto, and an Honorable Mention for the Isabel Cendala y Gomez National Award in Public Health Nursing from the Pan-American Health Organization. 

Irma Burjanadze

Irma Burjanadze headshot

Irma was born in Tchiatura, Georgia and graduated from the Tbilisi State Medical University program of preventitive medicine. In 2000 she started working at the Tchiatura City Hospital as a hospital epidemiologist. Since 2001 she has worked for the National Center for Disease Control and Public Health. She was appointed as a head of the HIV/AIDS epidemiologic unit in 2007, then as a Chief Specialist - Epidemiologist in the Department of HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis, STDs, and Tuberculosis. Since 2012 she has coordinated the national HIV/AIDS program at the National Program Department. At the same time, she has worked as a Geographic Information System (GIS) specialist, participating in several scientific projects funded by the DRTA Cooperative Biological Engagement Program. She studied GIS at the International Institute for Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), Enschede, and the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Her professional interest is using GIS in disease control, and she co-organized a training course titled "Using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in Disease Control Programmes." Irma also created a genetic algorithm for a rule-set production (GARP) modeling system through the CRDF small-grant program at the Spatial Epidemiology & Ecology Research Laboratory (SEER Lab) at the University of Florida in 2014. 

Zhenquan Jiao

Zhenquan Jiao headshot

Zhenquan is from Beijing, China. Dr. Jiao works for the Bureau of Disease Control and Prevention at the Chinese National Health and Family Planning Commission. He graduated from the public health school at Harbin Medical University and received his Ph.D. in nutrition and food hygiene at the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine. He has worked at Indiana University and the World Health Organization. Now, he is responsible for China's national HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases, and Hepatitis C control and prevention efforts. With the support of the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program, Dr. Jiao wishes to strengthen his academic capacity and to communicate and cooperate with local health departments, universities, and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention of HIV/AIDS. He hopes to learn from this experience and share what he has learned with China, the US, and other countries around the world. 

Bernardo Perez

Bernardo Perez headshot

Bernardo was born in Masaya, Nicaragua. As a child he discovered his passion for architecture, creating sketches of anything that came to his imagination. That passion led him to study architecture at the Universidad Centroamericana in Managua, Nicaragua, where he obtained his bachelor's degree in architecture in 2010. He begain working in private architectural studios, where he obtained experience that lead him to work as a consultant at governmental and non-governmental organizations as a project supervisor and architectural design planner. His most recent project was the planning and supervision of an important archaeological site in his city, which integrated environmental and urban issues. The project was funded by a U.S. government donation, which introduced him to the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program. As a Humphrey Fellow he will attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to explore Urban Planning Studies. 

Natalia Ariza Ramírez

Natalia Ariza Ramírez headshot

Natalia is from Colombia. She is an economist at the National University of Colombia (NUC). She holds a master's degree in economic science from NUC with an emphasis on theory and economic policy. She is an expert in the design, execution, monitoring, and evaluation of public policies, especially in the education, training, and employment sectors. She has led the construction of the regulatory and public policy framework of the work and education sectors for the last 12 years. She was the Deputy Minister of Higher Education between 2014 and 2016 and also held management positions in public institutions at the National Apprenticeship Service, Ministry of Labor, Ministry of Social Protection, and National Planning Department. Currently, she is an independent consultant. Natalia believes that access to quality education for children and young people is the only way to achieve social cohesion. 

Luis Alberto Hierro Sanchez

Luis Hierro Sanchez headshot

Luis is from Cuba. He received his law degree from the University of Havana in 2014. Since then he has been working as a professor at the University of Havana, and in 2016 was appointed as a judge at the Provincial Court of Havana. Since his time as a student he has collaborated as a community organizer for partial elections in the province of Havana, has been appointed by the National Electoral Commission, and has worked as a community speaker about the Cuban electoral system. In addition, he has worked as an Assistant to the Commission on Reform of the Cuban Law of Civil, Administrative, Labor, and Economic Procedure. His field of study is public administration and public policies analysis, and he hopes that the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program will contribute to his knowledge and help him to achieve his professional and personal goals. 

Fatma Ho?gör Teke?in

Fatma Hoşgör Tekeşin headshot

Fatma was born in Bursa, a beautiful city in Turkey. She always wanted to become a lawyer, and by the age of 24, she earned her law degree from Marmara University and became a lawyer. After marrying and having a son she decided to return to school to earn her master's degree. Upon completing her degree she opened her own practice and began teaching family law at Instanbul Bilgi University. She will study English and continue her legal studies through the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program.

Mireille L. Tchakounte Tchatat

Mireille Tchatat headshot

Mireille is from Cameroon. She has a higher national diploma in executive secretary studies and works for the National School of Administration and Magistracy, which goes by ENAM, a state institution which trains future civil servants. After spending ten years as an executive secretary, she went back to school and obtained a professional degree in Human Resource Management. After receiving her higher degree, she was appointed as the head of the Human Resource office, then as the head of service as the ENAM research and documentation center, then as a cooperation department assistant. Mireille took part in a seminar at the National School of Administration of Paris; one year later, she went to the Republic of Congo for the organization of the common entrance examination to ENAM for foreign candidates. She obtained two Cameroon Nationals of Honor, which are awards given by the government in recognition of services rendered to the nation. These medals of honor are awarded in the name of the President of the Republic of Cameroon under certain criteria, which include: 10 years, at minimum, of experience; effectiveness in work; efficiency in work; and good behavior in work.