A baby cries expecting help.
When abuse, abandonment, neglect or bereavement cause that child’s cries to go unanswered, the damage can be lasting. Early childhood trauma can powerfully shape brain development, with lingering effects that ripple into adulthood. When trust is broken with the initial caregiver, a child might struggle to build secure relationships for the rest of her life.
At any given moment, there are more than 400,000 children in the U.S. foster care system alone. For these children and for the thousands of families who adopt each year, the need for resources and training is imminent.
Utilizing models like Trust-Based Relational Intervention®, OrphanWise seeks to connect the best tools and training to those who work with children from hard places – both within the United States and beyond our borders.
Our mission is to get the right tools to the caregivers who need it most. We work in partnership with individuals and organisations in the United States and in Latin America to equip adoptive parents, foster parents, children’s homes, teachers, professionals, and churches to work with at-risk and traumatized children in a way that promotes healing and wholeness.
At OrphanWise . . .
We believe trauma is the cause of many difficult behaviors displayed by children separated from their families.We believe in the importance of secure attachments and relationships.We believe in the local community’s ability and responsibility to care for its children.We believe that equipping parents, teachers, and all those who work with the child on a daily basis is the best way to impact the child.We believe there is always hope and healing is possible.
Katie Rinaudo, Executive Director
From an early age, Katie knew she wanted to work with orphans and vulnerable children. A member of the Christian Alliance for Orphans (CAFO) she spent three years as a missionary at a children’s home in Paraguay. There, she became aware of the desperate need for training for caregivers of children from hard places, especially in the developing world.
Katie holds a practitioner license in evidence-based trauma competency (TBRI®) through the Karyn Purvis Institute for Child Development and a master’s degree in Holistic Child Development from Lee University.
Karen Kacir, Marketing & Communications Director
After receiving a bachelor’s degree in public relations and a minor in sociology from the University of Florida, Karen served as a English education volunteer in Peace Corps Colombia. Most recently, she worked as a communications specialist at Curley & Pynn Public Relations Management, one of Orlando’s leading communications firms.
A passion for education and an interest in attachment theory have underscored Karen’s career so far. Karen has remained actively engaged in local education initiatives, serving most recently as a volunteer English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher in her hometown.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Doug Pileri, Board President
Having held senior management positions at companies such as IBM, Thomson, and Kodak, Doug brings more than 30 years of leadership experience to the OrphanWise team. Most recently, Doug served as chief of market transformation at SIVOTEC Analytics, where he played an integral role in all aspects of business and brand development, helping to drive growth through the innovative use of integrated data and advanced analytics.
In the nonprofit sector, Doug serves as vice chairman of the board of directors of Music For All, one of the nation’s largest and most influential music education organizations. Additionally, Doug previously served as the executive vice president of Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce, where he led his team to achieve strategic goals aligned with the organization’s culture, framework, and vision.
Related: 5 Questions with Doug Pileri
Jon W. Newcomer, CPA, Board Treasurer
Principal, Jon Newcomer CPA PA
Jon W. Newcomer brings more than 30 years experience in diverse tax, financial and business consulting experience to his role as a Certified Public Accountant. In 1994, Jon established a full-service accounting firm in Cumming, Georgia. For over 20 years, Jon has been dedicated to helping clients achieve business success by helping them establish practical and sound tax and financial processes.
Jon also brings extensive experience as a nonprofit board member. He has served as chairman, treasurer and board member of organizations ranging from his local church, Horizon Christian Academy (a local private school), a faith-based charity assisting women in overcoming substance abuse, as well as other faith-based organizations.
Brenda Walker, Board Secretary
Brenda Walker holds a master’s degree in clinical psychology from American International College and has more than 20 years of experience in working with children and families. Over the course of her career, Brenda has worked directly with vulnerable children, serving as a campus counselor at a residential facility for at-risk teenagers, as well as a counselor for children and families in crisis.