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Our Board of Directors

Renel Noel, President

Renel Noel is a native of La Pointe des Palmistes, Port-de-Paix Haiti. He moved to the US in 1974 and has resided in Miami, Florida since then. He owns and operates Lawn Sprinkler Wizard, Inc. and is a contractor specializing in irrigation and low voltage landscape lighting. He is also the designer of a unique mosquito repellent system. Mr. Noel is an active volunteer member of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary and provides civil assistance during military training exercises with foreign partner governments. In 2012, he participated in training members of the Haitian Coast Guard. He is also a member of the Miami Rotary Club. Since 1994, Mr. Noel has taken numerous humanitarian trips to many impoverished countries, including Haiti. He oversees several trips a year to his hometown of Port-de-Paix where he delivers food and supplies to House of Hope and Beraca Medical Center. In 2004, he installed a domestic water system providing fresh drinking water to the compound and local village. He returned recently during a cholera epidemic to cut off a source of contaminant savings thousands of lives. In 2012, Noel formed Friends of Humanity to create broad based support to help ease suffering in this devastated region. He is grateful for the support he has received and is looking forward to making an even greater impact in the future.

Alice Burch, Secretary

Alice Burch is a civic activist in the Miami Shores area who has been involved with an ongoing effort by the Miami Shores Presbyterian Church to assist Haitians for over two decades. She worked with the Church and other organizations to disseminate solar cooking in Haiti, and from there, came to know the need in Northwest Haiti through Church colleagues. In 2003, Ms. Burch helped procure an ambulance for the region, and made the trip to deliver the vehicle. She has come to know and appreciate the direct contacts that the Church uses that ensure that every dollar and every shipment of supplies lands at the doorstep of the needy of the region. Ms. Burch holds a degree in Nursing from Barry University. She is a founding board member and secretary of Doctors Charter School of Miami Shores, a municipal charter school serving grades 6-12. Her other civic involvements include: Miami Shores Chamber of Commerce Board and the Noise Abatement Advisory Board for Miami International Airport. She has served on numerous educational and civic boards and committees, including: Miami Country Day School, Miami Shores Presbyterian Church School, Brockway Memorial Library Board of Trustees. Ms. Burch’s special interest is infrastructure improvement, and she obtained a Safe Routes to School grant for a sidewalk in a school zone in 2007.

Lauren Benton, Treasurer

Bio not available

Kathleen Monahan, Board Member

Kathleen Monahan is President of 12th Ward Productions, an entertainment company specializing in the development of non-fiction and reality television programming. A writer and producer, she also holds a law degree and is a member of the Florida Bar. She has served on various boards including the Viscaya Foundation, Florida Shakespeare Theater, the Utopia Association and is active with the South Florida SPCA Horse Rescue Group. Ms. Monahan has been a longtime supporter of the House of Hope. In the summer of 2012 she accompanied Friends of Humanity President, Port-de-Paix native Renel Noel, on a visit to the children’s home and the Beraca Medical Clinic. “I was floored by the poverty, overwhelmed by the need, and humbled by the loving spirit of the Haitian people.  As we delivered food, clothing and nurturing hugs, I experienced first hand the life-saving role Friends of Humanity plays in this impoverished region.”

Mary Newman, Board Member

Bio not available

Bill Tenney, Board Member

Bio not available

Hyon O’Brien, Board Member

Bio not available

Jean Rene Noel, Board Member

Jean left his home in La Pointe des Palmistes to live in Miami when he was 15 years old. He attended Florida International University, where his passion for helping young people inspired him to earn a degree in secondary math education. Since 2003, he has been a math teacher who has volunteered many hours of his free time to tutor students who have needed extra help. He is in his sixth year of serving as the treasurer of his church and has worked diligently to balance the church budget by identifying and eliminating unnecessary or inefficient spending. He has earned the respect of the church leadership and congregation for his integrity, honesty, and diligence in achieving financial solidity for the church. Jean has worked on projects in northwest Haiti, assisting Beraca Medical Center and the efforts of House of Hope. His desire to make a difference in the lives of others, particularly needy children, led him to join Friends of Humanity in bringing change and hope to the region and its most vulnerable children.

Helene Apollon Noel, Board Member

Helene Apollon Noel has been a teacher at Silver Ridge Elementary in Davie, Florida since 2000. She earned a bachelor degree in Exceptional Student Education at Barry University and obtained a Masters Degree from University of Miami in Reading and Exceptional Student Education. Ms. Noel developed a passion for working with children with disabilities while working at Goodwill Industries as an administrative secretary. She currently serves as secretary for the Missions Committee at Miami Shores Presbyterian Church. Ms. Noel joined Friends of Humanity because it was an opportunity to work with like-minded individuals towards improving the lives of others. Helene made several missionary trips to the area and saw firsthand how donations are put to use for the betterment of the children at the House of Hope who have endured many hardships, yet continue to exude hope, joy, and love.

Julie Ross Myers, Board Member

Julie Ross Myers spent more than two decades in the advertising industry as a writer. She manages our website and posts to social media. Ms. Myers joined Friends of Humanity because she knows firsthand that the organization is making a substantial difference in Haiti, which is one of the most neglected areas in the world.