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Board Members



Managing Directory 
Relief International 

Dr. Sameh, a Water expert with a Ph.D. in Water Management from TU Bergakademie Freiberg, specializes in Water Management, Conflict Resolution, Politics, and Climate Change. As the Managing Director of Relief International and CEO of Sanad Organization for Economic Development, he has spearheaded international projects across Europe and the Middle East. Driven by the belief that water can be a source of cooperation and peace rather than conflict, he emphasizes the interconnection between a strong sustainable economy and a sustainable environment. With expertise in water-related fields, Dr. Sameh advocates for holistic approaches that balance economic prosperity with environmental sustainability.

Qussay Emad

Strategic Planning Specialist


Qussay is a Strategic Planning specialist in the Plans and Programs Unit at the General Administration of Residency and Foreigners Affairs - Dubai, he boasts over 15 years of expertise in strategic planning, future foresight, and institutional innovation. With a bachelor's degree in computer science, he is a certified strategic planning professional from the Global Innovation Academy (GIA) and holds a Higher Diploma in Future Foresight from the University of Houston, USA. A TOT certified professional, he has actively contributed to crafting strategic plans at local and federal levels for various ministries and agencies in the United Arab Emirates, showcasing a profound commitment to organizational excellence


Head of SME Services at the UAE Federal Tax Authority

Khamis is a political economy consultant with extensive experience in the diplomatic filed, international trade, SMEs, and business development. His diverse expertise, marked by experience and integrity, enables him to serve in our board and to contribute in shaping the future of our organization.

Kosar Jalal Kareem



Kosar is an accomplished professional with a strong focus on legal and financial responsibilities. Specializing in ensuring meticulous compliance with local regulations and court practices for loan documentation, Kosar excels in managing a diverse portfolio of collection cases. With expertise in overseeing court proceedings and adept negotiation skills, Kosar is proficient in post-judgment collection enforcement. Collaborating effectively with management within a matrix management system, Kosar provides valuable counsel on business legal requirements. As a dedicated lawyer at Relief International since 2014, Kosar contributes significantly to contract drafting, training, and actively participates in various court cases. Committed to continuous improvement, Kosar has attended training courses on ethics, women's rights, and energy development.


Program Manager


Hasan Azeez is a dedicated professional  with a Master's in Engineering from the University of Baghdad and a Diploma in Public Policies from the American University of Sharjah. As the Founder of the educational Initiative since 2017, he has made significant strides in education, establishing and managing six educational centers, providing free education to over 800 students in war-affected and poor areas in Iraq every year. Hasan's expertise extends to program management, where he served as a Technical Advisor for UPP Organization & Sanabel Algarbia Organization, overseeing the Access to Education project funded by the European Union. In addition, he held the role of Programs Manager at the Sanad Organization for Economic Development since 2020



Ameer has a vast experience in different fields, an in-depth working expertise inside Iraq with IOCs in the Oilfields, Public & Governmental Relations, Crisis Management, Planning and Projects Management, Marketing and Business Development, High knowledge in Residency Law , Labor Law and social security law in Iraq.



Relief International 

Rana Khalil, based in Sulymaniya, Iraq, is an accomplished professional in Human Resources. Currently serving as Senior Human Resource Manager at Relief International, Rana leads and coordinates with the Iraq MF SMT in planning, acquisition, development, motivation, compensation, training, and staffing. With extensive experience as a Human Resource Manager at Relief International, Rana provided vital support for staffing needs, including strategy, recruitment, training, and legal provisions. An ambitious and well-organized individual, Rana possesses excellent management and communication skills. With a Higher National Diploma (HND) and various training certifications, including Strategy Human Resources and Managing HR Communication, Rana is adept at strategic HR practices and effective job design.



Relief International

Shahan Anwer, a Kurdish national based in Sulaimaniyah, Iraq, is a dynamic finance professional with diverse expertise. As the Finance Manager at Relief International since September 2017, Shahan serves as the Acting Head, overseeing financial management for microfinance programs. Committed to teamwork and honesty, Shahan excels in organizational leadership, financial planning, reporting, and compliance. With a Bachelor's in Commerce (Accounting) from the University of Sulaimani and additional qualifications in human development, accounting, and auditing, Shahan is a continuous learner. Passionate about giving back, Shahan has volunteered with organizations like Kurdistan Save the Children and GIZ Summer Activities Consortium. With proficiency in Arabic and English, Shahan brings strong teamwork, problem-solving, and leadership skills to every endeavor.



Ameer has a vast experience in different fields, an in-depth working expertise inside Iraq with IOCs in the Oilfields, Public & Governmental Relations, Crisis Management, Planning and Projects Management, Marketing and Business Development, High knowledge in Residency Law , Labor Law and social security law in Iraq.

Executive Team


Decision Science and Data Analytics Consultant

Sinan is is an experts in data analytics and decision science, supporting key decision makers across all verticals to make data driven decisions, he also has a vast experience in digital transformation and governance.


Finance Associate

Relief International 

Shan Othman, based in Sulaymaniyah, Iraq, is a dedicated finance professional with meticulous attention to detail. Since 2012, Shan has been a committed contributor to Relief International, progressing from Data Entry in 2012 to his current role as Finance Associate. Fluent in Kurdish, Arabic, and English, Shan holds a Diploma Degree in Bank Administration & Accounting from Dukan Technical Institute (2010-2012). His expertise spans bank account management, treasury operations, and accounting. A continuous learner, Shan has undergone training in banking administration, treasury, English language, and financial & accounts. With strengths in negotiation, critical thinking, and leadership, Shan excels in financial roles with a focus on ethical conduct and child protection.


Business Consultant

Ruaa Thaer Hasaballa, based in SULY/Farmanbaran, Iraq, is a skilled professional with a Management and Economics background, specializing in Accounting. A graduate of the Graduate Institute Technical Sulaimanyia, Ruaa has undergone various training courses, including HR, customer service, and English skills. Currently serving as the Regional Branch Manager at Relief International since 2013, Ruaa focuses on overseeing operational aspects, sales, and administration, emphasizing strong management practices. With a robust skill set in financial services and branch management, Ruaa consistently excels in roles ranging from Administrative Officer to HR. Fluent in Arabic, English, and Kurdish, Ruaa is a valuable asset with a focus on effective management.

Advisory Team

Prof. Dr. Yass Alkafaji 

Emeritus Professor of Business Administration 

School of Business Administration - AUS

Dr. Yass Alkafaji, a distinguished academic and seasoned practitioner in accounting and business, boasts a rich background. With extensive experience serving small to medium-sized companies, he founded Alkafaji & Associates in Chicago and holds a partnership at Ledgers Accounting and Auditing in Dubai. A respected Emeritus Professor at the American University of Sharjah, Dr. Alkafaji served for 15 years and contributed significantly to accounting, auditing, and tax issues. A notable author of three books, he's testified in US courts on valuation, fraud, and divorce cases. His comprehensive academic credentials, including an MBA and DBA, coupled with practical expertise, make him a highly sought-after professional

Ann Koontz 

Senior advisor 

Relief International 

Ann Koontz is a Senior Advisor with Relief International based in Washington DC and in her 14 years with Relief International she has served as a CEO and a Senior Vice President of the Global Technical Assistance Department. Ms. Koontz has vast field experience across forty countries, including Iraq, fostering partnerships with local communities, governments, NGOs, and the private sector, to solve sustainable development challenges which have generated millions of dollars in incomes gains for local communities while conserving the environment and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Ms. Koontz holds a bachelors from Stanford University in International Development and an MBA from the George Washington University

Prof. Dr. Broder Merkel 

Water Expert 

Technical University of Freiberg - Germany 

Professor Broder Merkel is an emeritus Professor of Hydrogeology and Hydrochemistry of the Technische Universität Bergakademie Freiberg (TUBAF), Germany. His work in TUBAF from 1993 to 2017 focused on the education of Bachelor, Master and PhD students from several study programs. He was one of the first professors at TUBAF to develop e-learning tools as teaching options. He served as Dean of the Faculty of Geoscience, Geo-engineering and Mining and as Vice Rector of the university. Since 2017, he works as an independent consultant. His research topics are development of sampling tools and field sensors, utilization of natural isotopes, and modelling including reactive transport simulation by combining numerical transport codes for saturated and unsaturated media of both fractured and porous with geochemical codes like PHREEQC. Mining environments and cleanup of contaminated sites, deep geothermal reservoirs and hydrogeology of arid and semiarid areas are topics of special interest to him. 

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