Our team of 10 is made up of professionals, former teachers, and college students. We all have different backgrounds and experience, but share a strong sense of social justice, a passion for the communities we serve, and a desire to see ourBRIDGE kids succeed.
Safety is our main concern, for that reason every volunteer and staff person is carefully screened before joining us.
We believe that actions speak louder than words, so to teach respect we must also show it to everyone.
Our goal is to create and maintain a nurturing environment for refugee and immigrant students to thrive.
Before joining ourBRIDGE, we ask that each leadership staff member is CPR certified
Sil Ganzó is the founder and Executive Director of ourBRIDGE. Originally from Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sil has been working with refugee, immigrant and 1st generation American children for the past six years. A strong advocate for diversity and respect among cultures, Sil created ourBRIDGE to continue her work supporting the education and the English acquisition of English Language Learner children, while encouraging them to feel pride of their culture, embrace their own heritage and others’.Learn More
Born and raised in Scotland, Linda is a British-trained educator, with 25 years of global experience in special education, remedial therapy, elementary classroom teaching, learning support, and tutoring.Learn More
ourBRIDGE for Kids is a 501(c)(3) governed by an eight-member interim board of directors.
Bank of America Merrill LynchRead Bio
Global Impact (Formerly)Read Bio
Croixstone ConsultingRead Bio
Meg Campbell Haynes, Esq.
Center for the Support of FamiliesRead Bio
Social Venture PartnersRead Bio
Bank of America (Retired)Read Bio
Charlotte Country Day SchoolRead Bio
Sil Ganzó is the founder and Executive Director of ourBRIDGE. Originally from Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sil has been working with refugee, immigrant and 1st generation American children for the past six years. A strong advocate for diversity and respect among cultures, Sil created ourBRIDGE to continue her work supporting the education and the English acquisition of English Language Learner children, while encouraging them to feel pride of their culture, embrace their own heritage and others’.
Sil’s work with ourBRIDGE has been recognized nationally in articles published in The Atlantic and NBC News. A recipient of the 2014 Charlottean of the Year award, Sil has recently presented her innovative strategies to teach English to newly arrived children for the National Afterschool Association's webinar series, and with Youth Today and the HUB.
Sil lives with her husband and two children in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Born and raised in Scotland, Linda is a British-trained educator, with 25 years of global experience in special education, remedial therapy, elementary classroom teaching, learning support, and tutoring.
Linda has mentored tutoring staff and volunteers, with responsibility for lesson planning and individual scholastic assessments for literacy and numeracy.
Linda has passionately dedicated her career to educating children of diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds.
Linda studied Elementary Education at Dundee University in the United Kingdom, earning a degree in Remedial Education (cum laude) from the University of Johannesburg, South Africa.
After receiving her teaching diploma in the UK, Linda traveled overseas to hold international appointments at schools in Abu Dhabi and South Africa, including 14 years as a Senior Teacher and Learning Therapist at Crossroads School, a distinguished remedial ‘clinic-school’ in Johannesburg.
In 2011, Linda met our founder Ms. Ganzó and began serving Charlotte-area immigrant and refugee children. Linda has mentored tutoring staff and volunteers, with responsibility for lesson planning and individual scholastic assessments for literacy and numeracy.
Originally from Connecticut, Andrew went on to study Classics at UMASS, Amherst. After a brief stint as a 5 star barista, he ventured to Bangkok where he taught ESL to kids of all ages (K-12).
After a few years in Thailand, Andrew moved to South America for a spell where he bounced around countries until he found a spot in Buenos Aires to help teach a TEFL course and take some Spanish language classes
Andrew then joined the Peace Corps and was sent to Takeo, Cambodia for two years to teach ESL to high school students and mentor budding English teachers.
To the chagrin of the international community and the relief of his parents, Andrew returned to the U.S., visited Charlotte and stayed. He worked at CPCC teaching ESL to adults before he began volunteering with ourBRIDGE in 2013.
This is where he belongs, and loves every minute of it.
Allen Shifflet manages a Credit Asset Financing team within the Global Credit and Special Situations Group at Merrill Lynch, focusing on financing portfolios of high-yield loans, bonds and similar securities. His background includes a variety of marketing, product development, structuring and execution of interest rate and credit derivatives, loans and securitization.
He began his career with a Bank of America predecessor bank after receiving a MBA from Harvard Business School. Allen earned a B.A. from Haverford College. He serves as a partner with Social Venture Partners Charlotte.
Erika Lopez brings her passion for immigrant issues and expertise in strategic planning, revenue generation and partnership development to OurBridge. Most recently, Erika led national fundraising efforts with the corporate sector for Global Impact, a non-profit alliance of over 100 international agencies that include Doctors without Borders, CARE, Stop Hunger Now and the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. Erika and her team of regional directors partnered with companies in the areas of CSR, employee engagement, workplace giving, and volunteerism to provide shared value to member agencies and to the companies and their employees.
Previously, Erika worked on the investment management team at U.S. Trust Company in Washington, D.C., providing relationship management and financial planning advice to high net worth individuals and families.
In the D.C. metro area, Erika served on the inaugural board of the Center for Social Leadership, which focused on capacity building in the nonprofit sector, and taught ESL as a volunteer with Hogar Immigrant Services.
Erika holds degrees in Economics and Psychology from the University of Virginia, and a Certificate in Non-Profit Business Management from Wake Forest. She currently lives in Charlotte with her husband and two young children.
Mark Weber serves as Chair of the Board of ourBRIDGE He is the founder and managing partner of Croixstone Consulting, a boutique management consulting firm.
Mark also was co-founder and managing partner of DARTON GROUP Consulting, an Inc. 5000 provider of finance and accounting consulting services. Additionally, Mark served 13 years in senior management roles with 2 of the world’s largest workforce solutions firms and was named one of Charlotte’s “Top 50” entrepreneurs by Business Leader Charlotte magazine in 2010.
Mark is a partner with Social Venture Partners, a non-profit venture philanthropy organization. He also serves as Media Relations Chair with the Charlotte Affiliate of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network who honored him with its national “Media Relations Chair of the Year” award in 2016. Mark earned a B.S. degree in Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point and has completed Harvard Business School Club’s Management Development Program .
Meg Haynes serves as Secretary of ourBRIDGE. She is a lawyer with the Center for the Support of Families. Her focus is on policy and procedures development, legislative analysis, and training on child support.
Meg has also served as Chair of the U.S. Commission on Interstate Child Support. Additionally, she was a member of the U.S. delegation to the Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Maintenance. She also served as an official observer to the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA) Drafting Committee of the Uniform Law Commissioners. Meg has been extensively honored for her work including: the OCSE Commissioner’s Distinguished Service Award for her work on behalf of children; ERICSA’s Felix Infausto Award for outstanding contributions in the area of interstate child support; and NCSEA’s Child Support Community Service Award. Meg is a former Trustee of Davidson College and a partner with Social Venture Partners. She earned a B.A. degree cum laude from Davidson College and a J.D. degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is admitted to practice in the District of Columbia, Massachusetts, and North Carolina.
Reid Leggett is a philanthropist and community volunteer who currently serves as Board Chair of Social Venture Partners and as a board member with Freedom School Partners. Reid’s professional experience includes 10 years working in the investment banking industry in New York City. Reid moved to Charlotte in 1988 to become a partner, and later President, of Bowles Hollowell Conner & Co. He later worked at Carousel Capital and Edgeview Partners. Additionally, Reid has served as a social studies instructor with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools at Myers Park High School. Reid earned a bachelors degree in economics from Duke University and a MBA from Columbia University.
Richard Lee serves as Vice Chair of the Board of ourBRIDGE. He is a professional consultant who helps corporate clients solve complex, global business problems. Most recently, Richard served for 13 years in a variety of senior leadership positions as Senior Vice President with Bank of America in roles including Corporate Compliance, Global Human Resources, and M&A Integration. He built new organizations around the globe and has been a strong advocate for building highly integrated work environments. Additionally, Richard served 8 years with Accenture, the global consulting firm, where he provided business, process and technology consulting to large financial services firms in Europe and the USA. Richard is a partner with Social Venture Partners, a non-profit venture philanthropy organization. Richard earned a MEng degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Leeds.
Rusty Rainey serves as Treasurer of ourBRIDGE. He is an independent consultant who specializes in enterprise-wide transformation programs, the majority of which center on post-merger integration initiatives for financial institutions. Rusty was employed by Bank of America and its predecessors for most of his career where he served in a number of senior executive roles. He led the bank’s transition teams for multiple acquisitions as the organization expanded throughout the Southeast, Texas and the Midwest. Additionally, Rusty worked for several years at JPMorganChase as the Corporate Integration Director for the merger of JPMorganChase and BankOne. Rusty supports social entrepreneurs as a partner with Social Venture Partners. Rusty earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Scott Waybright is a life-long educator and community volunteer. Scott found his passion for the Charlotte immigrant and refugee community after traveling to Africa and experiencing the isolation of being different for the first time.
Scott is the Assistant Head of School at Charlotte Country Day School. Previous to serving on the OurBridge board of directors, Scott served on the board of Carolina Refugee Resettlement Agency for six years.
A native of West Virginia, Scott has degrees from Marietta College (BA in Sports Medicine) and Winthrop University (MA in Middle Level Education).