Alison Palumbo is the founder and president of Banyan Tree Clinics. Alison currently works as a clinical oncology pharmacist and has been on several medical missions to resource-scarce countries. After several of these trips, she began to question the value of such a short-term investment and realized the need for long-term, sustainable solutions to health problems abroad. After volunteering in a children's hospital in Siem Reap, Cambodia, she fell in love with the country and the people there. She witnessed firsthand the health needs of this country which had been ravaged by genocide just decades earlier. It was during her first visit to Cambodia that she developed a mission to give back to Cambodians in a way that did not just last a week, but a lifetime. With this mission in mind, and armed with a background in public health, she assembled a team of passionate and dedicated members who form what is now Banyan Tree Clinics. She is excited to see what this group will accomplish to bring about a healthier Cambodia.
Sara Alturky is the Vice President and Director of Communications for Banyan Tree Clinic. She graduated from Portland State University with a Bachelor in Science and is currently working toward her goal of being a physician. She has worked in multiple clinics across Oregon and is involved in many volunteer organizations. During her undergrad, she was the president of many different clubs such as the Arab-Persian Student Organization and the Pre-Med Club, and was very involved with her student body. She is extremely passionate about serving different communities and working with diverse populations.
Nim Uth is the Secretary-elect and Director of Fundraising for Banyan Tree Clinics. She graduated from Oregon State University and has always had a drive towards medicine and helping her community. During her undergrad, she was the President of the Cambodian Student Association for two years and has demonstrated her leadership by organizing campus and community events and fundraisers to promote Khmer culture while integrating health-related issues. Nim has also served in a non-profit medical clinic and the Multiple Sclerosis Clinic in Corvallis, Oregon to provide direct services to lead healthy, productive lives. She has drawn on these experiences to help serve her well in guiding advocacy efforts in her communities. Now she would like to utilize her skills and knowledge to support the health needs of the people in Cambodia with Banyan Tree Clinics.
Connie Shipley is a native Oregonian, with a strong love of traveling and making a difference. She knows how important health is for people to have successful, fulfilling lives, and looks forward to assisting Banyan Tree Clinics to make a difference in the lives of many people. After a career in selling highway safety products in the five states of the PNW and British Columbia, she recreated herself as a personal historian and active volunteer. In 1979 she was on the founding board of the Columbia Basin Basketry Guild, an organization that has encouraged the appreciation of basket weaving. In 2007, she worked with her husband to create the ROSES field trip program for the Royal Rosarian Foundation and chaired four auctions to raise funds for it and other foundation programs. Over 14,000 students are getting field trips annually through this program. In 2010, she was on the founding board of the Golden Leaf Education Foundation and chaired the initial five auctions that resulted in four schools being built in Cambodia. The organization now has six schools thriving in Cambodia. She is also involved in the East Portland Chamber of Commerce, the East Portland Action Plan, and the Trinity Episcopal Labirynth Guild.
Rosemary Gonzales graduated Purdue University Global with a Bachelors in Health Science. She has over 14 years of healthcare experience in healthcare management, long term care and emergency care services. She has been honored to fill teaching roles within healthcare for emergency medical technicians, paramedics, CNA’s, and medical scribes. Along with program and educational curriculum development, she has worked with regional and state agencies to bring health education to healthcare employees. Her passion lies in working with people and ensuring that whatever circumstance life brings them, they will have a competent and compassionate healthcare or public health worker available to meet their needs. She is currently pursuing my masters degree in public health at Purdue University Global.
Rosemary and her spose spent the last 5 years sharing our home and heart with foster youth ranging from birth to 13 years old. From fostering 26 children in the last few years, her family has grown through 3 beautiful adoptions. Working with biological families alongside social services has been a true gift too. It has been worth the heartache of parting with a child to see them reunited with a family that worked so hard to get them back.
A native of Trinidad & Tobago and now residing in Miami FL with his wife and 2 sons, Reuben Mitchell is a Senior Accountant for a Private Equity Firm with over $3B Assets under Management. Reuben has over 20+ years experience in the customer service, accounting and finance fields having worked in the automotive, hospitality, retail and finance industries. Reuben is a volunteer with the Boy Scouts Association where he holds active leadership roles in both the cub and troop dens. He works alongside his 2 sons with United Way in Miami as well as other NGO's around the area. During his spare time, he loves to be outdoors with his family, riding, going to the beach and enjoying different cuisines around Florida and Georgia. Reuben holds a Bs in Finance from Devry University, MBA from University of London Business & Finance School and a MS in Accounting & Finance.
Molly graduated from Syracuse University with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and a Master of Science in Nutritional Sciences from Iowa State University. Between undergrad and graduate school, she spent two years living in Battambang, Cambodia as a Peace Corps Community Health Education Extension Volunteer. It was during this experience that Cambodia found a permanent place in her heart. After graduate school, she moved back to Cambodia and acted as Project Coordinator for a World Bank maternal, infant, and young child and nutrition project. Her research interests include maternal and child health and nutrition. She is excited to join the Banyan Tree Clinics team and continue working with the amazing people and communities in Cambodia!