About Us
Staff








 














 














 









Elisa Sabatini
Executive Director

Currently responsible for providing strategic direction, supervising staff (12 full-time and 40 field outreach workers), creating new programs, and securing all resources for domestic and internationally programming. Program areas include leadership education, family health, nutrition, micro-finance, sustainable agriculture and community organizing. The social enterprise of the organization is VolunTours™ offering transformative experiences in Mexico, the US/Mexico Border region, New Mexico, Guatemala, Bolivia, Sri Lanka and India.









  
Rigo Reyes
Director of Community Development

As Community Development Director, Rigo Reyes develops and coordinates community engagement and leadership trainings for residents in marginal areas of San Diego and Tijuana and manages our Border Immersion program for students visiting San Diego. He is a long-time social justice advocate whose work is rooted in early childhood experiences growing up on the U.S.-Mexico border, attending United Farm Workers of America rallies and listening to Cesar Chavez while playing marbles. When he was 12-years-old he rode his bike 17 miles each way from his San Ysidro neighborhood to San Diego’s Logan Heights to witness the land take-over of Chicano Park, and has been a strong community empowerment advocate ever since. Reyes has been a member of the Chicano Park Steering Committee for nearly four decades, has been lowriding since the mid-1970s, and is a founding member of the Amigos Car Club.





Gabriel Reed
Director of Education and Voluntourism

Gabriel serves as the Director of Education and Voluntourism working to expand Via International’s university partnerships by fostering increased education and community engagement through our Volunteer Travel Programs. Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, he is currently pursuing a PhD in Philosophy, Aesthetics, and Art Theory from the Institute for Doctoral Studies in the Visual Arts. Gabriel’s experience includes working as an international educator with a background in non-profit management, community activism, and a continuing creative practice as a professional artist.

@GabrielReed







Joanna SalazarHarris
Director of Resource Development 

Joanna joined the Via family in May, 2013 as our Resource Development Director. Joanna holds a Master’s Degree in International Relations from UCSD and has worked in cross-border collaboration and infrastructure planning for 20 years. Joanna is passionate about empowering individuals to be their own best advocate, and believes that civic engagement is key to a thriving community. She is an avid gardener, urban bee-keeper and mom of two young boys. Joanna is the main contact for foundations, corporations and individual donors and leads our Bee-hive Build program in the San Diego area.

@JoannaSalazarHarris







Keila Del Valle
International Director

Keila serves as Via's International Director of Volunteer Travel in Guatemala. Born in Guatemala City, she recently completed her Master’s Degree and has over 8 years of experience in carrying out logistics for all necessary travel services, project implementation, and community building in Tecpan and San Martin, Chimaltenango. Keila is a passionate educator working with indigenous communities and visitors to effectively address the ongoing challenges of extreme poverty.







 
Taylor Kilpatrick
Social Media Manager

Taylor manages the social media marketing for Via International, and connects with the Via community on a daily basis. She recently graduated from the University of San Diego with degrees in International Relations and Environmental Studies. She hopes to attend a Sustainable International Development graduate program next year. She also works in product innovation at the Foundation for Global Scholars. Taylor's passion for learning and travel pushes her to explore the world, both near and far. She's also a music junkie and a self-proclaimed "starry-eyed idealist."










Lisa Faiella
Regional Outreach Director
 
Lisa serves as a Regional Outreach Director operating in the Mountain West. Lisa is a former anthropology and sociology professor and also served as Vice President of a Denver-based mining company. She worked for the United Nations with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and holds a Bachelor's Degree in Anthropology from Simon Fraser University including master's level fieldwork with Promotoras from Los Ninos de Baja, in Tijuana Mexico. Lisa has 10+ years experience as a grant and contract writer, research assistant, instructor, and an NGO funding program coordinator. As an educator and businesswoman, Lisa brings a unique skill set to help advance Via International's vision, performance, and prospects.