Led by Passionate People
The Institute for Global Education is volunteer-driven and led by the following Board of Directors:
Gerard Akkerhuis, Chairperson, Executive Committee, Social Media
Gerard Akkerhuis received a Master of Social Work from Grand Valley State University in 1990 and has been a volunteer in public service since then, serving on several boards. Currently he is active with the Grand Rapids Industrial Workers of the World, the Kent County Green Party and the Grand Rapids Friends Meeting (Quakers). In 2020, Gerard retired from his job at the Kent County Courthouse as a Clerk Typist after 22 years of service.
Ajla Alisic, Secretary, Executive Committee
Ajla Alisic started her college career at Grand Rapids Community College with an Associate degree in Philosophy in 2010. She received a dual Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Studies with a minor in Economics from Aquinas College in 2012. Ajla is currently pursuing her MBA. She immigrated to the United States as a child and is involved in the Bosnian community in Grand Rapids. As a refugee, she understands very well how devastating conflict, war, and genocide can be and how important peaceful resolutions are. Ajla volunteers her time with several non-profit organizations in town to help bring awareness and justice to a variety of social issues.
Dan Hesse, Treasurer, Executive Committee, Technical Support
Dan has been a progressive activist since 2018. He served as Secretary of the Grand Rapids DSA from 2019-2020.
Kim McKeon, Executive Committee
“IGE came to my attention 30 years ago thru my high school social studies teacher. I reconnected 5 years ago due to its values of building peaceful and just communities. IGE is involved in anti-war activities. It is a place to have voices heard, encouragement of diversity and equality. I was a volunteer especially with the Peace Festival and organized the Mandela Day Celebration.”
Chuck Neller, Graphic Design