June 27, 2016 (Washington, DC): The Educators’ Institute for Human Rights announces the transition of Co-founder and Executive Director, Mark Gudgel, to the Board of Directors. Gudgel served as Executive Director for six years, creating and facilitating genocide education conferences in Rwanda and the United States.
While Gudgel continues his involvement with EIHR as a Board Member, he looks forward to spending more time with his new family, as he and his wife recently celebrated the arrival of their son. Co-founder Drew Beiter currently serves as the Board Chair.
Gudgel and Beiter conceived of EIHR in 2010 while planning a genocide education teacher workshop at the Kigali Memorial Centre in Rwanda. They started with Holocaust education strategies they learned as Museum Teacher Fellows in the Regional Education Corps of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM), who supported the first conference. They shared training and materials with Rwandan teachers to connect the lessons of the Holocaust to the 1994 Genocide Against the Tutsis in Rwanda.
“More than anything, we gave them a chance to dialogue…to share ideas and converse with one another,” Gudgel explained. “It’s a difficult conversation to have, but it’s important.”
Beiter credits his Co-founder’s leadership for the NGO’s early success and stability. “Through his incredible communication and organizational skills, Mark’s work ethic and vision allowed us to grow in ways that we couldn't have imagined," he commented.
EIHR’s Board of Directors confirmed Kate English, EIHR’s Deputy Executive Director, as Gudgel’s successor in the role of Executive Director, effective July 1, 2016.
Gudgel and Beiter invited English, also a USHMM Museum Teacher Fellow in the Regional Education Corps, to join the EIHR staff shortly after its founding. English traveled with Gudgel to Rwanda in 2014, and successfully organized and facilitated the 2015 EIHR Education Summit in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
An educator for over 15 years, English was named the 2007 district-wide Teacher of the Year for Colchester Public Schools in Connecticut. She graduated with a Masters degree in Gifted and Talented Education from the University of Connecticut, and recently completed an Executive Certificate in Nonprofit Management at Georgetown University. English currently teaches for Alexandria City Public Schools in Virginia.