BOARD OF DIRECTORS AND ADVISORS
Our Board of Directors
Arlene Samen, President
Arlene Samen has been empowering mothers and children to lead healthy lives for over 35 years. After many years as a nurse practitioner specializing in maternal and fetal care, Arlene left her clinical practice at the University of Utah in 2004 to dedicate her life to serving vulnerable pregnant women in the most remote regions of the world. She founded One H.E.A.R.T, a maternal health project in Tibet, and worked with local governments to bring safe motherhood to poor, uneducated women in remote, mountainous regions where one in ten newborns were dying of preventable causes. Based on what she learned in Tibet, Arlene developed the “Network of Safety” model, which brings life-saving care to expectant mothers and infants in rural, indigenous populations. In 2009, Arlene founded One Heart World-Wide and extended the model to remote villages in Nepal and the Copper Canyon of Mexico. Over the course of her work, Arlene has endured political uprisings, earthquakes, and the SARS epidemic in order to provide women safe, clean deliveries, touching the lives of over 40,000 women to date. Arlene has received many awards for her efforts: she was named one of 50 Unsung Heroes for Acts of Compassion in 2001, received the Soroptomist Women Making a Difference Award in 2001, and was CNN “Hero of the Week” in 2008. In 2009 she became a Rainer Arnhold Fellow with the Mulago Foundation, in 2011 she appeared as a TEDxSF guest speaker, and in 2012 she won the Gold Stevie Award for Women Helping Women.
Jay Blumenkopf, Chair
Lawyer Jay Blumenkopf is a partner in Gonzalez Saggio & Harlan, LLP (GSH), the largest minority-owned law firm in the nation and a fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America, an invitation-only trial lawyer honorary society, limited to fewer than one-half of one percent of American lawyers. He is a frequent lecturer, has served on the Advisory Board of the Bureau of National Affairs, Inc., Civil Trial Manual and has been a faculty member of New York Law School, the National Institute for Trial Advocacy, and the Hofstra Law School Trial Techniques Program. He has authored numerous articles in legal publications. In 2014 Jay was awarded the Litigation Counsel Civic Achievement Award for his work with One Heart World-Wide. Jay earned his J.D. cum laude from Vermont Law School, an LL.M. at New York University, and his B.A. from the University of Vermont.
Deanna Byck, Vice Chair
Deanna L. Byck, Sc.D, MPH is committed to enhancing dialogue around social issues using her experience in health and communications and her extensive academic and professional background in media, film and television production. She holds a Doctorate from Harvard University in Health and Social Behavior, Policy and Communications and a Masters of Public Health in Maternal and Child Health from UCLA. Deanna was the Director of Public Health Policy at the American Council for Science and Health and a Senior Communications Specialist at the U.S. Agency for International Development's Center for International Health Information. While living in Utah, she helped develop and implement Easton Health and its subsidiaries Rigfit, EMS (Emergency Management Solutions), and Fit to Respond; as well as Local HealthCare Today a healthcare magazine written by physicians that reached 300,000 homes in Utah where she served as Editor in Chief. In addition, Deanna was the Festival Director of Utah's High Adventure Mountain Film Festival as well as Co-Executive Producer of the soon to be released PBS Documentary, “Two Who Defied the Nazis”.She developed, researched, and wrote health–related stories for television series such as ABC's Good Morning America and PBS's Frontline and served as senior researcher and managing series editor for the award-winning national television series The Health Quarterly. Deanna Byck is an active member of her community and currently sits as a Director on several Boards including One Heart World-Wide, The Harvard Association of Utah, and The Utah Film Center.
Ayelet Baron, Secretary
Ayelet Baron is a futurist and a global executive, helping organizations thrive in the 21st century. She is passionate about promoting good in the world by supporting strong businesses and strong leaders. Ayelet was the Innovator in Residence at Roche/Genentech, where she served on the Innovation Management leadership team, transforming drug development. Prior to her residency, Ayelet spent over a decade at tech-giant Cisco Systems, rising to Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer at Cisco Canada and holding many global executive positions. Ayelet is currently authoring her first book while blogging for the Huffington Post and Itbusiness.ca. She invests her time and passion in nurturing a new generation of leaders, sharing her expertise with people around the world as Co-Founder of and speaker for CreatingIs. She served as president of IABC Toronto, which trains people in communication, and was a member of their international board in the late 90s. As a Cisco Leadership Fellow in 2009, she helped to launch the Global mHealth Alliance, and volunteered at NetHope, supporting 32 global NGOs and driving their Information and Communications Technology healthcare strategy.
Meihong Xu, Treasurer
After a harrowing story of escape from persecution in China, Mei arrived in the United States in 1990, earned her MBA and enjoyed a career in tech and as a venture capitalist. Mei is an early investor and former board member of Tianji, the largest social network for professionals in China. Mei was also a founding member of Softbank Asia Infrastructure Fund (SAIF) where she has worked as a venture capitalist, investing in technology providers in the U.S. and Asia as well as GIV Venture Partners, where she managed GIV's Silicon Valley and Asia-related investments. Prior to joining GIV, Mei worked at other technology companies in Silicon Valley including Apple Computer and Sun Microsystems. Mei is a trustee at the California Institute of Integral Studies, an accredited institution of higher education that strives to embody spirit, intellect, and wisdom in service to individuals, communities and the Earth. Mei’s memoir, Daughter of China, was published in seven languages and became an international bestseller. She has been interviewed on BBC, VOA, NPR, NBC, and other TV and radio programs and has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, London Times, Far Eastern Economic Review, and the South China Morning Post.
Michael Draper M.D.
Michael Draper, M.D. is an Associate Clinical Professor for the University of Utah Health Sciences Center’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in Maternal-Fetal Medicine. He also maintains part-time positions at Ogden Regional Medical Center, Salt Lake Regional Medical Center, the University of Utah Medical Center, and at the LDS Hospital. Prior to his work at the University of Utah, Michael held professional positions at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in Maternal-Fetal medicine and Wake Forest University’s Baptist Medical Center’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in Winston-Salem, NC. In addition to his many roles as an educator and medical professional, Michael has served extensively in administrative capacities, including Director of Perinatal Services at Salt Lake Regional Medical Center, Residency Program Director for the University of Utah, Education Committee Chair at the University of Utah, and Co-Director of the Maternal Fetal Diagnostic Center at the University of Utah Hospital. He has given many oral presentations and grand rounds presentations locally and nationally and been published in numerous professional journals. Michael has received many honors and awards for his work in Maternal-Fetal medicine including the World Class U Physician Appreciation Team Award consecutively from 2006-2008 and faculty and resident teaching awards at both Wake Forest University and the University of Utah.
Alan Greene, M.D. is a pediatrician in private practice, and maintains a popular website, Dr.Greene.com. He also serves as the Chief Medical Officer for Scanadu, a cutting-edge health and technology company dedicated to empowering consumers with medical tools and real-time education. has been a founding member of several organizations, including the Society for Participatory Medicine, Transitioning Immediate Cord Clamping To Optimal Cord Clamping (TICC TOCC), and the Collaborative on Health and the Environment. Dr. Greene is frequently featured in the media, such as the TODAY Show, Good Morning America, Fox and Friends, The Dr. Oz Show, CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, NPR, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and Time Magazine. He is also the author of several books. Alan loves to think about challenging ideas, he enjoys being where nothing manmade can be seen, and he wears green socks. He is a graduate of Princeton University and the University of California at San Francisco.
Greg Jacobson is an Austin, Texas based real estate investor and hedge fund manager. Prior he ran various financial services businesses including Manhattan Capital Markets, Countrywide Capital Markets Asia and KB Home Mortgage Corp. His experience ranges from running divisions of Fortune 500 companies to turn-arounds and start-ups primarily in the real estate financial services area. He has served in a variety of board capacities for public corporations, small businesses and non-profits. Currently in addition to OneHeart, he serves on the board of Vetted a veteran’s retraining and mentoring organization and ARA a grass roots safety organization.
Evan Kaplan is the former President and CEO of iPass Inc., which focuses on delivering always-on, frictionless Wifi connectivity around the world. With almost two decades of executive leadership and entrepreneurial experience, Evan is committed to driving forward new ideas and innovative solutions in a variety of sectors. Evan served as president and CEO of Aventail Corporation, a company he launched in 1996, which was partially acquired by Megapath in 2005 and later aquired by Sonicwall, Inc. in 2007. Evan was voted one of Network World’s 50 Most Powerful People in the Networking Industry in 2003 and was recognized as Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year in the Pacific Northwest in 2001. He has served as a board member for the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the University of Washington, the Washington Software Association (now WTIA), and the Networld + Interop industry trade show.
An avid explorer and traveler, Jill Smith is President and CEO of Jeep Jamboree USA (JJUSA), providing off-road weekends trips. Inspired by her father’s history-making expeditions and her own youthful trips on the legendary Rubicon Trail, Jill has always had a spirit of adventure. Jill has visited six of the seven continents and regularly travels to the planet’s most remote regions, often performing volunteer and service work for humanitarian and animal conservation organizations. As President & CEO of JJUSA, Jill ensures that each Jamboree trip embodies the same sense of adventure and camaraderie she finds in her explorations of exotic lands and cultures. Jill has served on the Board of Feathered Pipe Ranch in Helena, Montana, Chrysler’s Environmental Board, the Founder’s Circle of Women for Women International, and she has been an International Trip Ambassador for Women for Women International.
Our Advisory Board
Dr. Sarah Averbach, Obstetrics & Gynecology
Our Medical Advisory Board
Chair: Dr. Tim D. Dye, Anthropology & Epidemiology
Dr. Sarah Averbach, Obstetrics & Gynecology
Dr. Sienna Craig, Anthroplogy
Dr. Patti Fernandez, Health Psychology
Dr. Beena Kamath, Pediatrics & Neonatal Health
Dr. Sibylle Kristensen, Global Maternal Health & Perinatal Epidemiology
Dr. Jeanette Lager, Obstetrics & Gynecology
Dr. Suellen Miller, Midwifery & Global Maternal Health
Dr. Susan Niermeyer, Pediatrics & Neonatal Health
Susan Stalls, Certified Nurse Midwife
Our Nepal Advisory Board
Dr. Shankar Sharma (Former Nepali Ambassador to the US)
Dr. Swaraj Rajbhandari
Mr. Ashoke Shrestha
Dr. Shibesh Regmi