MCE is a virtual organization with experienced, dynamic, and passionate staff in San Francisco, Washington, D.C., New York, Boston, and North Carolina.
Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer
Senior Research Associate
Before joining MCE as a portfolio manager in 2013, Tala worked in Iraq supporting Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) as a Portfolio Monitoring Manager with the Iraq Middle Market Development Foundation. From 2008 to 2012, Tala also worked with Global Communities’ (formerly CHF International) development finance group, where she provided technical support to microfinance and SME lenders.
Prior to entering the world of microfinance, Tala was the CFO at KIPP Academy of Opportunity, part of the KIPP Foundation network. Tala has been dedicated to the social sector for most of her life; during her undergraduate studies, she worked with several non-profits, including CALPIRG and Upward Bound.
Originally from Marseille, France, Pierre joined MCE in 2010 as Portfolio Manager and was promoted to Director of Portfolio Management in 2013. Prior to MCE, Pierre worked with the Grassroots Business Fund and IFC/World Bank as an Investment Officer based out of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. His responsibilities included deal sourcing, investing in social ventures and technical assistance programming. Pierre also spent time in Africa working with a microfinance bank in Rwanda. Before shifting to a career in international development, Pierre was a lead finance consultant for Hewlett-Packard, working on large IT outsourcing transactions in Europe and the U.S.
San Francisco, California
A native Californian, Kevin joined MCE, with his wife Laurie, in 2007 as a guarantor. Kevin is the co-chair of the Finance and Operations Committee. Kevin stepped in as the interim CFO from May 2013 through February 2014, and continues as Treasurer for MCE and serves as an advisor to the CEO.
Kevin is “mostly” retired after spending thirty years with Accenture, mainly in Europe and global management roles, as a senior managing partner. His work spanned a range of strategy, management consulting and technology. His roles with Accenture included client partner for some of the top financial services clients of Accenture, P&L responsibilities for various groups in Europe, global responsibly for Accenture’s System Integration business, as well as quality assurance and trouble-shooting for significant client contracts.
Currently, Kevin serves as a director for a number of non-profits and for profit firms. These include Sojourners, a faith based social justice group, Youth Compass, and Premiere Alliance, Additionally, Kevin is active as a hands on volunteer in his local community and as an advisor to a local and international non-profits.
Kevin and his wife Laurie are based in Northern California. They have three adult children, Sarah, Anne and Erin.
Originally from Seattle, WA, Gary joined MCE in 2014 after working as a Research Consultant for Habitat for Humanity, where he conducted fieldwork and analysis on housing microfinance programs in Latin America.
Previously, Gary spent several years in Mexico, Colombia, and Brazil helping non-profit organizations to improve and expand programs in underserved communities. While completing his graduate studies, Gary also taught several courses on international development, and in 2013 received the University of California Berkeley’s Outstanding Student Instructor Award for excellence in teaching.
Earlier in his career, Gary worked at Approach Management Services, a Seattle-based risk-management consulting firm, where he guided the development and implementation of accident prevention programs and trainings. Gary continues to write and speak on low-income housing issues, international development, microfinance, and impact investing.
Prior to joining MCE in 2017, Elisabeth oversaw Global Retail Operations for Bridge International Academies, a for profit chain of low cost private schools operating in Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, India and Liberia. In this role, she managed all aspects of the organization’s $1.5 million retail business unit, including product design, financial forecasting and P&L, mobile e-commerce, manufacturing, importing, inventory and warehouse management and last mile delivery.
Previously, Elisabeth was a management consultant with A.T. Kearney’s Dubai office. She has also served as a consultant in finance, operations and strategy for Sustainable Health Enterprises (Rwanda), Developing World Markets (Cambodia), Technoserve (Mozambique) and Infosys (India). Elisabeth began her career in nonprofit management in Washington DC. Elisabeth is a dual citizen of Kenya and the United States.
San Francisco, California
President and Chief Executive Officer
Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer
A French-Italian binational, Fabrizio has lived and worked throughout Asia, America, Africa, Oceania and Europe. After a successful career in the private sector, he has decided to apply his accumulated professional expertise to the field of international development. Restless with a desire to contribute concrete solutions to poverty and driven by a passion for market-based approaches to development, Fabrizio joined MCE in 2014.
Prior to MCE, Fabrizio held key business management positions across a wide range of industries and companies sizes. He started his career in Singapore as a credit analyst for BNP Paribas, before moving to China where he contributed to the Michelin Group’s go-to-market strategy. After working in Paris for an entrepreneurial travel industry venture, he joined the Ariston Thermo Group, for which he first led large marketing teams in the Far East before managing its operations in the Iberian Peninsula. Just before MCE, Fabrizio volunteered in Côte d’Ivoire with Technoserve, a Washington D.C.-based development NGO.
New York, NY
Gary has had a passion for helping people escape poverty ever since he spent a year working in Sub-Saharan Africa when he was 23. Driven by this desire, Gary joined MCE as pro bono General Counsel in 2007 and took over as President and CEO in 2010.
For almost 40 years Gary has been a practicing attorney in Washington, D.C. He is currently a Principal at Groom Law Group, which he joined in 1981 after serving as ERISA Counsel to the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources. In 1987 Gary took a two-year leave of absence to serve as General Counsel to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation. Gary is a leading expert on issues relating to the treatment of employee benefit plans in bankruptcies, and he has represented both debtors and creditors in bankruptcy cases involving substantial benefit liabilities and assets. In addition, he represents a number of the nation’s largest plan sponsors, service providers, multiemployer plans, and fiduciaries in a variety of areas, including litigation, planning, and advice.
Prior to joining MCE in 2013, Natasha served as Finance Director at Hot Bread Kitchen, a social enterprise and commercial bakery providing on-the-job training to immigrant women in New York City. In 2010, Natasha founded LIFT Investments, a social enterprise focused on business development and skills training in Nairobi, Kenya. From 2010 to 2012, Natasha also worked for boutique management consulting firm ESV Strategies, where she advised nonprofits and social enterprises on their financial growth. Earlier in her career, Natasha worked at UBS Investment Bank as a financial analyst, where she focused on multi-million and billion dollar cross-border mergers, acquisitions, and equity transactions.
Natasha is a regular public speaker on launching social ventures, impact investing and social enterprise. Venues have included Columbia University, New York University, Women Advancing Microfinance and various corporate and industry conferences.
Tracie Hudgins joined MCE as the Operations Manager in 2008 and is also currently the Director of Registrations with Opportunity Collaboration. Prior to joining MCE, Tracie was the Executive Assistant for B&J Smith Associates. Tracie is also the former Executive Assistant for iNation and the former Executive Assistant for VistaCare. Before joining VistaCare, she was an Executive Assistant for the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl from 1998 to 2003.
Prior to MCE, Harrison was a student at the University of Pennsylvania, where he graduated summa cum laude with a degree in English and a minor in Hispanic Studies. He first discovered his professional interest in international development through the Penn Global Impact Collaborative, through which he led a pro-bono consulting partnership with an NGO in South Sudan focused on literacy and educational development among women and children.
He is passionate about finding innovative solutions to both economic and environmental issues, and believes that social entrepreneurship is crucial to sustainable development. Outside of his interest in international development, Harrison has been an actor, singer, skier, and soccer player for most of his life. He has family across the U.S., France, and Singapore, and always enjoys traveling to new places. In addition to his position at MCE, Harrison is currently a Partnerships Intern at Agora Partnerships.
B.A., English with minor in Hispanic Studies, University of Pennsylvania, Summa Cum Laude
Acting, Soccer, Singing, Skiing, Reading, Travel
Philadelphia, PAConnect on LinkedIn
Managing Director and General Counsel
Loan and Accounts Manager
Originally from the island of Menorca, Spain, Elena has lived and worked in Switzerland, Germany, and Russia. Prior to joining MCE in 2013, Elena was an Associate Director at Sonen Capital, where she focused on business development, industry research, and supporting the firm’s investment process.
Prior to Sonen Capital, Elena worked as a Research Consultant for the Springcreek Foundation and as a guest teacher at the University of Maryland, Robert H. Smith School of Business, where she taught classes on microcredit and social enterprises and conducted fieldwork in Bolivia. Previously, Elena served as a Collateral Asset Manager at the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco, conducting collateral review of the member banks and credit unions. Earlier in her career, she worked as the VP of Operations and Senior Loan Underwriter for a boutique real estate broker.
San Francisco, CA
Ben began his career in 2004 as a corporate defense attorney at Orrick, Herrington, & Sutcliffe LLP in NYC, where for four years he helped manage multi-million dollar representations of international banks, energy companies, and individuals. In 2008, Ben started Indego Africa, an award-winning social enterprise and lifestyle brand providing more than 600 female artisan entrepreneurs in Rwanda with access to global markets and business education. After serving as Indego Africa’s General Counsel, COO, and CEO, Ben joined American Express in 2012 where, as Director of Start Up and Small Business Development, he built programs to help entrepreneurs in the U.S. scale their ventures. Ben joined MCE in 2014.
Ben regularly speaks on leadership, social entrepreneurship, international development, marketing, ethics, and law. Venues have included Harvard Business School, U.S. State Department, UN, Columbia Law School, NYU Law, NYU Stern, NYU Wagner, BU School of International Affairs, Clinton School for Public Service, Goldman Sachs, American Express, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the Fashion Institute of Technology.
Jackie has over 12 years of experience in non-profit finance, both in the Accounting and Human Resource departments of organizations. Jackie joined MCE in 2014 as Staff Accountant. Prior to joining MCE in 2014, Jackie held the position of Senior Bookkeeper at Hot Bread Kitchen, a social enterprise and commercial bakery providing on-the-job training to immigrant women in New York City. Prior to her work at Hot Bread Kitchen, Jackie worked at several non-profit organizations including The Art Students League of NY, The East Harlem Tutorial Program, and Casita Maria Senior Center in the positions of Senior Bookkeeper, Senior Accountant and Human Resource Manager.
New York City
A distinguished board of directors with extensive business and public service experience governs MCE. All Board members are MCE Guarantors.