Superintendent of Schools and Country Director, Cambodia
Ung Savy is CFC’s Superintendent of Schools and Country Director. He has served as Superintendent since 2003, and additionally, as Country Director since 2006. In this role, Savy oversees all student programs across CFC’s twenty-one schools, offering leadership to the school principals and providing opportunities for improvement at each campus to maximize student learning. As the primary liaison to the Cambodian Government, Savy has implemented the joint Memorandum of Understanding and built important relationships with the Ministry of Education. In addition to managing the school principals, Savy directs the Deputy Country Director, the CFC Administrator, the Executive Assistant of Programs, and the Senior Program Manager.
Under Savy’s leadership, drop-out rates have fallen to less than 10% consistently since 2010 (currently one-third the national rate), and CFC has continued to forge connections with the Cambodian government, achieving the significant honor of being named the country’s model schools by the Minister of Education.
Savy’s early years were overshadowed by the Khmer Rouge, and from the age of one, he lived in Cambodia’s war-torn conditions. Separated from his parents and family, he was provided with limited food and was forced to work destroying termite mounds and making fertilizer for rice paddy fields until the age of 10 when the Vietnamese army forced Pol Pot from power. At the age of 13, Savy finally began his formal schooling as a first grader. After graduating from sixth grade at the age of 18, he joined the Vietnamese army where he started learning English – something that was illegal at the time.
In 1993, Savy was able to use his knowledge to provide translation services to the UN armies upon their arrival in Cambodia. He was also able to return to school to continue his formal education. After relocating to Siem Reap in 1994, Savy obtained a position as an English teacher at Spien Chreav School – now the Spien Chreav Amelio School – and worked as a tour guide in his spare time. Savy stayed in these roles until 2003 when he was introduced to Jamie and Bill Amelio, and accepted the role of Superintendent at what was the first of CFC’s now twenty-one schools.
Since joining the CFC team, Savy has supplemented his education with courses on leadership and English, among others, bolstering his natural ability to guide teams and excel in an international environment.
Savy and his wife, Mom, live in Siem Reap with their son who was born in 2011.
Deputy Country Director, Cambodia
Rebecca Large is CFC’s Deputy Country Director. She helps to establish strategic direction and execution of key CFC initiatives, and works with CFC’s program managers to strengthen current systems as well as implement new community programs. Additionally, Rebecca develops human resource policies and procedures, and trains local teams on communication and public relations skills.
Rebecca started working in Cambodia in 2014 after graduating University of Sheffield with a degree in Human Geography. Employed by Futuresense Foundation in Cambodia, she was initially assigned as a volunteer and program coordinator, but progressed to program manager where she developed and implemented sustainable education programs. It was during this time that Rebecca developed a love for Cambodia, and for grassroots development with a focus on education initiatives and policy.
This experience led Rebecca to obtain a master’s degree from the University of Sussex in International Education and Development, where she conducted research in Nepal about head-teachers’ roles in supporting teachers’ professional development.
Lori Soenksen is CFC’s Director of Finance. She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration degree from West Virginia University.
Prior to joining Caring for Cambodia as Director of Finance, Lori was Vice President of Finance for a private equity company focused on the oil and gas industry and located in Princeton, NJ. In this position, Lori was responsible for all financial aspects for the firm, including financial reporting, payroll, and accounting management. She also managed the office and all contact with vendors, building management and IT set-up. Prior to this, Lori held various accounting roles of increasing responsibility with Medical Broadcasting Company and Kraft General Foods. Her public accounting experience came in earlier years as a senior auditor at Price Waterhouse LLC, Philadelphia, PA.
From 2013 through 2015, Lori and her family lived in Singapore where she became acquainted with CFC. She was fortunate to participate in a family service trip during that time and that experience solidified her interest in and commitment to CFC.
Lori and her husband John have three children, and currently live in New Hope, PA.
Human Resources Director
Deeann Gallo is CFC’s Human Resources Director. She has served in this role since 2013, ten years after she first joined CFC as a volunteer. In this role, Dee is responsible for hiring the Management Team in the US, Singapore and Cambodia, overseeing the recruitment of the support team in Siem Reap, and defining CFC’s succession plan. She also monitors the salary structure, salary increases and bonus plan, drawing on market research in Cambodia, the US and Singapore. Dee is instrumental in helping to develop key CFC initiatives, as well as policies and procedures for the Siem Reap team.
Dee first became involved in CFC in 2003 when she attended one of the first ‘backpack parties’ where groups gathered to fill backpacks with school supplies and uniforms for CFC students. Her love for the organization grew as she took on the job of coordinating and running CFC’s first ‘Make a Difference’ service trip to Siem Reap, as well as advising CFC in the human resources area. After leaving Singapore in 2007, Dee and her family moved to Buenos Aires where she focused her energies on local charity work. In 2012, Dee and her husband Juan moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida to be closer to their two sons.
Dee’s previous experience includes jobs as a Benefits Administrator for a law firm in Denver, CO; an HR Generalist for TRW, a large multi-national auto and aviation supply company in Boston; and Office Manager for Wilevco, a small manufacturing company also located in Boston. While living in Buenos Aires, Dee taught Business English to senior leaders and CEO’s of Argentine and US subsidiaries in the Latin America region. In addition to her extensive work-related training, Dee studied Business Administration at colleges in Denver and Boston.
Colleen O’Farrell is the CFC’s Director of Development and is responsible for revenue growth, event planning and management, fundraising, donor cultivation and stewardship, and diversifying revenue streams. Highly adaptable and results-driven, she has over fifteen years of experience in the nonprofit sector raising money and bringing awareness to causes that she deeply believes in.
Prior to joining CFC, Colleen served as the National Development Manager for both The ALS Association and the LIVESTRONG Foundation and was responsible for a $10M annual budget on average. Prior to that, she worked in the oil industry for ten years.
Colleen earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. She has lived in Austin, Texas since 2000 and loves the Austin creative vibe.
Heaven Edwards is CFC’s Fundraising Manager. In this role, she coordinates fundraising campaigns, oversees grants and foundational giving, and explores new and exciting ways to spread awareness about CFC’s mission.
Heaven began her fundraising career in 2011 going door-to-door for environmental campaigns. Since then, she has worked in membership engagement and developed fundraising strategies for international development nonprofits in locations spanning from Washington, DC to Uganda, Africa.
Heaven graduated from University of California, San Diego with a major in political science and a business minor. International development was a large part of her experience studying abroad to both Ghana and Thailand. During one school break, she traveled to Cambodia to marvel at the beauty of Angkor Wat juxtaposed with the lacking infrastructure of a country with a heavy past. Joining CFC allows her to remain committed to her passion for international development.
Laura Andrews is CFC’s Communications Director. In this role, she is responsible for delivering and coordinating all external communications to CFC’s global supporter base, including newsletters, chapter outreach and social media. She is also responsible for the ongoing maintenance of CFC database.
Laura first became involved with CFC in 2008 while living in Singapore, volunteering with various committees, participating in several family service trips, and ultimately assuming the lead role on the Communications team in 2012. When her family relocated to Switzerland, Laura was the first CFC volunteer to pioneer a leadership role from outside Singapore or the US.
Laura holds a BSFS from Georgetown University and an MBA from the University of Michigan. She worked for more than twelve years in the banking and technology sectors before her husband’s career led them on expatriate assignments in Singapore and Switzerland. She and her husband now live in Orinda, California with their two children.
Singapore Operations Manager
Renee France is CFC’s Singapore Operations Manager. In this role, Renee works closely with committee chairs to coordinate several hundred volunteers throughout the region. She oversees fundraising and special events in Singapore, and serves as the regional liaison with CFC’s global management team.
Renee is a social care professional with experience in the charity, voluntary and government sectors. Originally from the United Kingdom, Renee has been living in Singapore with her family since November 2014. She has extensive experience recruiting, managing and training front line social care staff and volunteer workers, and she brings knowledge of fundraising and event planning for charitable organizations.
Prior to arriving in Singapore, Renee was Project Manager for four high-profile homelessness services in a diverse London borough.