Keith Cooper, Executive Director
Keith enjoys working at the intersection of food, business, community renewal, and storytelling. He worked in refugee education before helping start the granola company that became Beautiful Day. Since 2012 he's been guiding our growth into an ESE (Employment Social Enterprise) that connects refugees and their host communities.

Rebecca Garland, Associate Director
Rebecca taught literacy and ESOL to adults before starting work at Beautiful Day in 2018. She is responsible for developing partnerships with donors and foundations as well as with individuals and community groups. She gives talks to groups interested in learning more about refugees. Please contact her if you’d like a speaker for your group, either in person or virtually.

Roberto Romero, Director of Operations
Coming from a culinary background, Roberto has honed the ability to multitask, optimize workflows, and deliver results efficiently. As Operations Director for Beautiful Day, he is focused on streamlining our processes and expanding the capacity of our training program so we can continue to serve our mission of connecting refugees and the public to better serve this community.

Laura Sadovnikoff, Administrative Manager
Laura came to Beautiful Day in 2021 after 20 years at Brown University's Watson Institute, where she managed international visiting scholar programs. Before her time at Brown, Laura was dean of students at a school in Vermont, lived and worked in São Paulo, Brazil, and spent several years in the field of US-Soviet cultural exchange, leading over 20 trips to Russia and bordering countries. Laura feels at home at Beautiful Day, enjoying an administrative job that is all about people.


Saad Awad, Production and Training Manager
Saad, originally from Syria, has worked in the food industry for his entire adult life. From 2006 to 2018, he owned and operated his own restaurant and catering business in southern Rhode Island and sold Mediterranean products in local markets. Saad enjoys working with various cuisines and is excited to be a part of Beautiful Day's operations.

Iman Diriye, Production Assistant
Iman, originally from Somalia, went through our kitchen training program in 2016. Iman has become an experienced granola chef, and helps organize every shift, tutoring each new trainee to master a new set of skills.

Evon Nano, Granola Chef
Evon, born in Baghdad, Iraq, has been with Beautiful Day from the very beginning when we were perfecting our recipes and slapping home-printed labels on tin-tie bags. She has coached nearly every trainee in our kitchen. If you think our granola is perfect--well you can bet it's because of her.


Mason Billings, Farmers’ Markets and Accounts Manager

Leonard Dougbe, Marketing Associate
Leonard, originally from Liberia, West Africa, immigrated to Rhode Island in 2003 to be with his family. He earned his BA in arts with a concentration in graphic design from Rhode Island College in 2021. Since then has worked freelance with several small businesses and non-profit organizations. He brings his talent to Beautiful Day with the hopes of helping them reach a wider audience. You will find him and his two kids exploring his love for photography and music in his free time.

Margaret Garcia, Accounts and Customer Service Associate

Selemani Mayundo, Operations Associate
Born in DRCongo, Selemani lost both his parents when he was young. He became a refugee in Burundi where he got married and had children. He arrived in the US in 2017 as a widower and single parent of four children, including two with challenging health issues. He beams when talking about them and their future.  Selemani came to Beautiful Day through a training program in 2021. In January of 2023, he was hired as an Operations Associate taking responsibility for packing and shipping. He enjoys laughing and joking, always working with a bright smile.

Joan McLaughlin, Director of Growth
After traveling nationally and internationally during her sales career, Joan is dedicated to spreading the word about Beautiful Day's flavors of the world, locally, regionally, and nationally. You will find her engaging buyers, sharing our story, listening to our customers, sampling products, and contributing to helping new Rhode Islanders thrive.

Nomanullah Niazy, Farmers Market Manager

Rose Ntirampeba, Operations Associate
Rose, born in Burundi, came to Rhode Island in 2015. A mother of five, Rose manages one of our farmers’ markets, drives our van to make deliveries, assists with inventory, measures for production, and is central to our growing services for corporate clients. 

Zaid Wadia, Shipping Manager
Zaid, born in Baghdad, Iraq, started in the kitchen, then took over our first farmers’ market, and now oversees all of our shipping and fulfillment. Zaid keeps busy with another full time job along with four kids, including a pair of rambunctious twins.


Maliss Men Coletta, Director of Training
Born in Cambodia during the war, Maliss spent her childhood in various refugee camps before settling in Providence in 1987. With her experience in community work and teaching, Maliss piloted our youth program in 2019 and is now the program director. When she is not working with the youth or sharing healthy produce with the staff, she is busy raising her adventurous and nature-loving twins.

Beatrice Ake, Case Manager


Karen Hlynsky, English Program Developer

Raised in Ohio, Karen quickly developed a strong case of wanderlust that led her to Sierra Leone as a Peace Corps Volunteer. There she helped train uncertified teachers in the primary schools. Decades later, she returned to Sierra Leone to update the curriculum and train instructors in the teacher colleges. In the US, she has taught ESL to refugees and immigrants for over 15 years and developed curriculum for a range of education programs. They included a program for high schools sponsored by the Ford Motor Company; it promoted the development of life skills in the workplace. Karen joined Beautiful Day in August of 2022 as a curriculum developer and English teacher. She is an Airbnb host and an ESL Instructor at Dorcas International.

Liz Lindgren,  Entrepreneurship Program Director

Fred Wambolt, Youth Program Coordinator

Fred joined Beautiful Day in September of 2022 after retiring from his career as a public school educator. Fred taught English and ESL for fifteen years at Brooklyn International High School, a public school for recent immigrants and refugees in NYC. He relocated from Brooklyn to Providence in 2018 and taught English at 360 High School. Fred is passionate about working with refugee youth and is excited to coordinate the youth training program. In his free time, Fred plays tennis, swims, hikes, reads, and writes.


Eleanore Koo, Development Assistant
Born and raised in Toronto, Elle immigrated to Providence in 2009. She was a Grant Writer at a nonprofit helping low-income women start their own small businesses in Oakland, CA before joining Beautiful Day in March, 2023. Elle is responsible for researching, writing and reporting on grants and maintaining relationships with corporate and individual donors. Elle is grateful for this opportunity to get to know the refugees enrolled in our programs and living in her RI community. In her free time, Elle loves to read, play the piano and travel.


Rebecca Katz, Volunteer Coordinator