Our Staff

Federico Borello | Executive Director

Federico Borello is the Executive Director at Center for Civilians in Conflict as of July 2014. He brings to the team more than fifteen years of experience working on human rights and international justice issues. Federico previously served as Director of Investments at Humanity United where he managed the International Justice and the Democratic Republic of Congo portfolios. Prior to this, he worked with the United Nations, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and the International Center for Transitional Justice (ICTJ). Federico holds a law degree from the University of Milan, where he graduated magna cum laude. He also earned a master's degree in international affairs from Columbia University in New York. Read Federico's full bio here.

MARLA BERTAGNOLLI-KEENAN | managing Director

Marla Keenan is managing director at Center for Civilians in Conflict and is a subject matter expert on civilian harm mitigation, civilian casualty tracking mechanisms and consequence management of civilian casualties. She is a Truman Security Fellow at the Truman National Security Project. Marla has trained military officers at several advanced schools and staff colleges. In addition to her work with the military, Marla helps shape the Center’s programs in conflict zones and oversees operational aspects of the organization. Since joining the organization in October 2005, she has managed programs and research in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria, Lebanon, Mali, Israel, Jordan, Nepal, Georgia and the Central African Republic. Prior to joining the Center, Marla was an Edward Rawson Fellow at Citizens for Global Solutions, working in US global engagement on issues as varied as the conflict in Darfur to Avian Influenza. A former management consultant, Marla has held senior communications and marketing positions with a range of private sector organizations. She holds a Masters of Science in Public Policy and Management with a concentration in policy analysis and international policy from the H. John Heinz III School of Public Policy & Management at Carnegie Mellon University and earned her Bachelors degree in Business Administration from the University of Arizona.

To view Marla's Media Bio click here.

Sahr MuhammedAlly | senior Program Manager

Sahr Muhammedally is a Senior Program Manager at the Center for Civilians in Conflict. She manages the organization’s work on civilian protection and harm mitigation in the Middle East and Asia as well as US counterterrorism policies. Sahr has worked for over a decade in the fields of armed conflict, human rights, and counterterrorism and has conducted fact-finding research in Afghanistan, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, and Syria. Prior to joining the Center, Sahr was a consultant with Human Rights Watch working on Southwest Asia and Southeast Asia and was the 2004-2005 Alan R. Finberg Fellow. From 2007-2009 Sahr was a Senior Associate at Human Rights First and undertook research and advocacy on US counterterrorism practices and policies.

Sahr practiced law in New York with Gibbons PC and has been a consultant with the American Civil Liberties Union, Human Rights in China, and the International Rescue Committee. Sahr is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College and Brooklyn Law School (cum laude).

KYLE DIETRICH | SENIOR PROGRAM MANAGER

Kyle is one of the Center’s senior program managers. He brings over ten years of experience as a manager and technical adviser supporting complex post-conflict and humanitarian crises (Haiti, Burundi), international development (Turkmenistan, Niger), and interagency coordination (USAID, DOD, DOS) to the position. For the past two years, Kyle has worked as a Conflict Specialist supporting USAID and DOD efforts in North and West Africa. Kyle also advises Peace in Focus, a boutique peacebuilding organization he co-founded in 2007. 

A graduate of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and Harvard Divinity School, Kyle has also worked with Mercy Corps, UN Peacekeeping, USAID, the Peace Corps, the Organization of American States, and the Carter Center. An anthropologist by training, Kyle is proficient in French, Portuguese, Turkmen, and Spanish and specializes in creative program design, conflict analysis, foreign assistance, countering violent extremism, youth engagement, facilitation, strategy development, and high impact management.

VALERIE Richards KIRKPATRICK | DEVELOPMENT OFFICER

Valerie is the Center's development officer.  She spent the previous four years with Human Rights Watch, where she conducted advocacy with the U.S. government on a range of human rights issues and worked on research and reports focused on refugees and displaced persons.  Prior to this, Valerie worked for two years on women’s empowerment and community development projects while serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Bukhara, Uzbekistan.  She is proficient in Uzbek and speaks basic Russian, Tajik, and Spanish. Valerie holds a BA from Asbury College and did her masters studies at American University’s School of International Service, where she focused on ethics, peace, and global affairs.

EMILY ERFANI | operations manager

Emily brings years of experience in non-profit administration. She supported CARE USA's Policy and Advocacy efforts, including a temporary assignment in Afghanistan to write a series of policy briefs focused on the health and legal rights of women and girls. Emily speaks French and holds a BA in Political Science from the University of the Pacific.

Nicolette Boehland | Harvard Law Fellow

Nicolette, a Harvard Law Fellow, will be at the Center from 2013 - 2014. Before attending Harvard Law, Nicolette was a political intern at the US Embassy in Belgium; a senior associate in the legal and policy division of Human Rights Watch; a Fulbright Fellow in Jordan, where she worked with CARE International on coordinating resources for Iraqi refugees; and a program manager for Save the Children in the West Bank and Gaza. While at Harvard Law, Nicolette documented the torture and mistreatment of conflict-related detainees in Afghanistan with the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission and researched civilian perspectives on involvement and distinction in Libya as a legal intern at the Center. As a member of Harvard’s International Human Rights Clinic, she researched and co-authored reports on the ban against cluster munitions and on civilian harm from Qaddafi's abandoned weapons. She received her B.A. in international affairs and English literature from Lewis & Clark College and her law degree, cum laude, from Harvard Law School. 

Hadi Marifat |  Afghanistan Analyst

Hadi was born in Afghanistan and studied Politics and International Relations in the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in the UK. He did his Masters degree in Peace and Conflict Studies with the International Institute of Social Studies of the Erasmus University of Rotterdam, in The Netherlands. Hadi has worked as a director of the Afghanistan Human Rights and Democracy Organization, researcher with Human Rights Watch, Human Rights Associate with the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), Regional Election Coordinator with the Afghanistan Joint Electoral Management Body (JEMB) and advisor with the Save Children Alliance in Afghanistan.