en Español

Erin Parish

Project Coordinator and Designer

erin bio4
Erin Parish is an anthropologist and historian of war and the environment.  Her work focuses on the physicality of memory and the psychology of place, specifically in post-conflict reconstruction and the return of internally displaced people to their homes in Colombia. She has a PhD in Cultural Anthropology and an MA in History from Duke University, an MPhil in Conflict Resolution and Reconciliation Studies from Trinity College Dublin, and a BA in International Relations from the University of Georgia.

Her professional and personal life centers around connecting people and resources to build stronger, healthier, and more engaged communities. She has fifteen years of experience working with community organizing and development, reproductive health education, and peace building initiatives in the United States, Nicaragua, Gabon, Northern Ireland, and Colombia.  In her spare time, she enjoys discovering new music, talking to strangers, cooking, and creating personalized cocktails that fit the personalities of her friends. She’s happy to make you one too.

Catalina Montoya

Project Co-Designer

Cascada San Carlos Cata

Catalina Montoya got her degree in Anthropology from the University of Antioquia in Medellín, Colombia. She is a nature lover who is passionate about working with rural and urban communities. She has worked on participatory projects in health; economics; vulnerabilities assessments; and gender, knowledge, and traditional practices.

Catalina has used many different Participatory Action Research methodologies in her work and studies, especially social cartography. At the Institute of Regional Studies—INER—at the University of Antioquia—she used social cartography in projects with Afro-Colombians living in situations of internal displacement in Medellín.   Social cartography was the basis for developing the social stoplighting tool for participatory planning used in San Carlos, Colombia. She has also used mapping and social spotlighting in malaria and dengue prevention projects in Urabá, Colombia. Currently, she is applying this methodology in participatory health processes as tools to evaluate health projects in municipalities in Urabá.

Maribel Ramirez Gutierrez

Project Co-Designer


Maribel Ramirez Gutierrez studied animal husbandry at the Catholic University of the North (UCN) in Antioquia, Colombia. She considers herself to be a respectful and responsible person who bases her work on sound methodological processes. She has created and managed projects for displaced families returning to San Carlos and advised communities in the establishment of productive agricultural and livestock systems, improving the quality of life in the community of San Carlos.

Adriana Maria Murillo Buitrago

Project Co-Designer


Adriana Maria Murillo Buitrago is an agro-ecological technician who specializes in setting up rural gardens and agro-ecological plots for cultivating vegetables. She loves the countryside and everything that knits together each rural community and is committed to the reconstruction of the social fabric of her community. She works hard to develop projects with different institutions that seek to provide every member of village councils (JAC) with a better quality of life and long-term income generation options that help farmers see their farms as sustainable businesses that provide them with the means to raise their children. In order to get better results, however, they need support to become more entrepreneurial. She is happy to work for the municipality of San Carlos. Her job has allowed her to get to know every part of her community and share with fellow community members the enjoyment of the landscape, breathing pure air, and the pleasure of a delicious sancocho.

Saira Butt

Data Visualization and GIS Coordinator

saira in mde

Saira Butt graduated from Duke in 2014 with a degree in Psychology, Global Health, and Environmental Science and Policy. She is particularly interested in environmental health and the way mapping technologies can facilitate innovation in aid delivery. Through the Duke Study Abroad program, she studied cultural anthropology in Accra, Ghana, and spent the following summer conducting a global health research project in western rural Kenya. After taking courses in GIS and studying humanitarian mapping at the Franklin Humanities Institute, she traveled to Colombia to contribute to this project. She now works in international development with the Millennium Challenge Corporation.

Ishan Thakore

Data Visualization and GIS Co-Designer

Ishan Thakore a graduate student in the Sanford School of Public Policy poses around the Terry Sanford Building for a Duke Annual Fund project

Ishan Thakore is a senior at Duke University studying Public Policy. He is interested in journalism as well as the intersection between technology and healthcare to provide solutions for low-resource settings. These interests have taken him around the world. He spent the summer of 2012 in India researching e-learning solutions for the Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) in Ahmedabad. Last summer he was in Muhuru Bay, Kenya and researched technology access of community leaders. In the fall of 2013, he traveled to Morocco for a journalism study-abroad program. During the summer of 2014, he completed a short stint in Eldoret, Kenya for research for his senior thesis on the potential role of mobile phones to provide mental health services in rural areas. He spent the second half of the summer in DC, interning for the United States Agency for International Development. Ishan grew up in East Brunswick, NJ, and loves to run, write, read, watch movies and play tennis.

Kaysi Holman

Web Designer

Kaysi Holman, bricks

Kaysi Holman is the Program Coordinator for the PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge in the John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute and HASTAC at Duke University. In 2014, she produced the “History and Future of (Mostly) Higher Education” MOOC taught by former PhD Lab Co-Director, Cathy N. Davidson. Producing the MOOC included do-it-yourself filming and editing, building the course platform, quizzes and forums on Coursera, managing intellectual property permissions, creating wikis, and more. As this experience indicates, Kaysi enjoys learning new things–technologies, theoretical approaches, tools and methodologies. She holds a J.D. from Arizona State University School of Law and a B.S. in Cognitive Studies from Vanderbilt University.

Diana Gómez

Translator, Editor, and Advisor

diana bio 2

Diana Marcela Gómez Correal earned her PhD in Anthropology at University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. She completed both a BA in anthropology and an MA in History at the National University in Bogotá. Her MA thesis was a reconstruction of the second-wave feminist movement in Colombia (1970s and 1980s). A book based on her MA thesis was published in Bogotá (Spring 2011). Diana’s doctoral research focuses on the politicization of family, organizational and communal ties of caring and belonging in Colombia in contexts of pervasive violence. She is particularly interested in the role of emotions in collective action and issues of subjectivity, identity, memory, gender, and power in the social mobilization of victims of state and right wing violence. Since 2002, she has been part of different expressions of the women’s movement and the human rights, victims and peace movements in Colombia.