Meet The Team That Makes Things Happen

Ariel Rojas, MS, MA

Chief Executive Officer / Founder

Ariel founded Transdiaspora Network in 2007. As an interdisciplinary cultural entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience in the fields of mental health, HIV/AIDS, counseling and youth development, Ariel has in-depth knowledge of the Caribbean and Latino communities in the New York metropolitan area and their cultural nuances. He emigrated from Havana, Cuba, to the United States in 2000 as the first young Cuban researcher to be unanimously awarded Vassar College's Latin American Culture Fellowship, in the Hispanic Studies Department. Ariel holds a Masters degree in Sociocultural Anthropology from Columbia University, and a BA in Psychology and a Masters in Social Psychology from the University of Havana. He has earned Master-level credits at Columbia University with a concentration in Social Enterprise Management, where he presented an independent research entitled "Cross-cultural Study of HIV/AIDS and Preventive Strategies." For his leadership, his innovative and entrepreneurial effort, and his social commitment to raise HIV/AIDS awareness, Ariel is the recipient of the New York State Department of Health Commissioner's Distinguished Service Award provided by the AIDS Institute. Publication: Article "Enabling Culture for Effective Responses to HIV/AIDS" (Real Life Times Newspaper, January Issue, 2014).

Alicia Rando Ibañez

Cross-cultural Youth Exchange Fellow

Alicia finished her Bachelor of Music at the Conservatory of Music of Aragon in Zaragoza, Spain, in 2015, and she obtained the Master in Solo Performance (MIS) at the Katarina Gurska's Centre in Madrid. She has recently acquired a Professional Studies Certificate (Doctorate level) at Manhattan School of Music of New York. In 2019 she has represented Spain at the “International Students Concert and Gala” of Manhattan School of Music in Miller Hall in New York. She has participated in several radio programs of Aragon Radio and television reports for the Chanel 2 of Spanish Television, Aragon Television and the "Young Soloists" program of Spanish Television. She won the award for Best Artist of stringed instrument and the second prize in the 7th National Contest of Interpretation "Intercentros Melómano", having won the first prize in the regional phase of Aragon. In 2009 she was awarded with the third prize at the XI International Violin Competition "Villa de Llanes" in the category up to 16 years. In 2010 she won the first prize in the Third National Violin Competition in memory of Marcos Pedro Moreno held in Cabra (Córdoba) and the first prize in the VIII International Violin Competition "Violins for Peace" held in Torres (Jaen). In 2018, she has been Finalist in the "Musical Youths of Spain" Competition. An important part of her academic training was the Master in Solo Performance that culminated in the presentation of her Final Research Project based on the results of the academic intervention proposal on the influence and survival of children's stories in Prokofiev's work and,specifically, in his Concerto for violin and orchestra no 1, op 19. The project focused on the analysis of the individual vision of various groups of children of the CPMT based on the fact known in Prokofiev's biography of their interest and liking for children's stories. Thanks to this project, she obtained the highest grade and finished her Master's Degree with honors.

Dr. Anil Kabrawala, MD

Senior Consultant Physician

Anil earned a degree in Neuroscience at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY, with a focus in health sciences. There, he was able to build community through various fundraisers and events. After college, he decided to pursue his dream of becoming a physician. He enrolled at St. George’s University in Grenada, West Indies. In Grenada, he continued to reach out into the community by arranging several health fairs in order to provide basic preventative medicine and medical screening to the local citizens. He also provided care and assistance to the abused and neglected children of two orphanages in Grenada. After medical school, he enrolled into a residency training program in Internal Medicine at Stony Brook University Hospital in Long Island, NY. He has traveled widely throughout Europe and Asia, and one day plans to open up free health care clinics around the world. He is now a GI Fellow at SUNY Downstate, Brooklyn, one of the nation's leading urban medical centers. From the moment he joined our team, Dr. Kabrawala has participated in community health fairs, has co-authored several articles and has refined TDN health promotion model.

Jonathan Zacks

IT & Digital Strategist

Jonathan received his BA in Computer Sciences from Vassar College in 2002 and has over a decade of experience in the IT field as a tech, programmer, web designer and A/V consultant. He oversees the organization’s IT and digital procedures, and puts out all technology fires to increase the visibility of our work. He divides his time between helping Transdiaspora Network and running Mac Help NYC, where he brought together a network of like-minded consultants to form his IT solutions team. Together, they provide full service technology consulting to the greater New York City area. During his time with the organization, Jonathan has been invited to career events at local high schools, where he empowers students to be more proactive in the use of technology as a tool to positively impact their life and their own communities.