About our Board

Donald F. "Pat" Patierno

Board President

Mr. Patierno has a diverse and expansive background that spans 38 years of military and civilian service with the U.S. Federal government. He spent over 21 years at the State Department where, among other positions, he served as the Director, Office of Contingency Planning; the Executive Director of the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs; the Director of the Office of Humanitarian Demining (PM/HDP); and the Executive Director of the Bureau of Public Affairs. As Director of PM/HDP, the forerunner of the State Department organization that manages the U.S. government’s humanitarian mine action projects, Mr. Patierno oversaw a $60 million program that supported humanitarian mine action assistance to over 40 countries. Subsequent to his retirement, in addition to his service on MAG America’s Board of Directors, Mr. Patierno served as the U.S. advocate for the Slovenian-based International Trust Fund for Demining and Mine Victims Assistance. Mr. Patierno joined MAG America's Board in 2006 and became President of the Board in February 2011.

Cito Vanegas

Board Treasurer 
Chief Financial Officer, National Older Worker Career Center

Mr. Vanegas is the Chief Financial Officer of the National Older Worker Career Center, a national nonprofit organization that advances experienced worker opportunities throughout the United States. He has over 21 years of experience working in the nonprofit sector, specializing in nonprofit finance, management, and accounting. Mr. Vanegas is an emerging leader fellow at the Nonprofit Roundtable of Greater Washington. He received a BS in Business Administration from the University of Mary Washington and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. He is also a licensed Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA.) Mr. Vanegas joined the MAG America Board in 2012.

Gail G. Uilkema

Chair, Governance Committee
Founder and CEO, Lantern Projects, Inc.

For over 35 years, Dr. Uilkema worked in the education field: first as a teacher and principal, and then as the Superintendent of two nationally recognized school districts. In 2002, she received the National Superintendent of the Year award from the American Association of School Administrators. In 2003, Dr. Uilkema retired from the Superintendency, but she continues her work in education as an international consultant. Upon retirement, she founded Lantern Projects, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life of individuals and communities around the world through projects in health, education, and the environment. Dr. Uilkema is an active Rotarian and serves as a docent at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco. She and her husband, John, have been involved in humanitarian mine action campaigns since 2006 when they traveled to Southeast Asia to view firsthand the devastation anti-personnel landmines can cause to a community. Dr. Uilkema joined the MAG America Board in 2011.

Laurence D. Alpert

Senior Financial Advisor, Dana Associates, LLC

Mr. Alpert has over 30 years of senior financial and business experience within the Satellite, Telecom and Government Services industries. Mr. Alpert grew up in New York and earned his MBA in finance from NYU’s Stern School of Business. While attending graduate school, he began working in telecommunications and finance at ITT Corp. in New York City. Career advancement opportunities drew him to the Washington, D.C. area where he continued working in finance and telecommunications at AT&T and Verizon predecessor companies. In his work at Intelsat (the largest fixed satellite communications providers in the world with its fleet of more than 50 geo-stationery satellites covering over 99% of the world’s populated regions), Mr. Alpert headed financial planning and analysis and treasury activities and worked on communications projects for Intelsat customers in most regions of the world. He also served in senior financial positions with Intelsat’s government services group located in Bethesda, Maryland. Currently Mr. Alpert works as a consultant to several satellite and telecommunications firms. Mr. Alpert joined the MAG America Board in 2012.

Ambassador Frederic C. Hof

Senior Fellow, Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East

Ambassador Hof is a senior fellow with the Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East at the Atlantic Council. In 2012, President Obama conferred on him the rank of ambassador in connection with his new duties as Special Advisor for Transition in Syria. Ambassador Hof was previously the Special Coordinator for Regional Affairs in the US Department of State’s Office of the Special Envoy for Middle East Peace. He joined the Department of State in April 2009 after serving as president and CEO of AALC, limited company, an international business consulting and project finance firm. A 1969 graduate of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, Ambassador Hof began his professional career as an Army officer. He is a Vietnam veteran and served as a US Army Middle East Foreign Area Officer. Ambassador Hof received a Master’s degree from the Naval Postgraduate School. He served as US Army Attaché in Beirut, Lebanon and later in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as Director for Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, and Palestinian Affairs. His awards include the Purple Heart, the Department of State Superior Honor Award, the Secretary of Defense Meritorious Civilian Service Medal, and the Defense Superior Service Medal. Ambassador Hof joined the MAG America Board in 2013.

Robert "Turk" Maggi

Mr. Maggi is a senior leader with over 40 years of military, civilian and business experience. With expertise in foreign assistance, humanitarian demining and international business development, Mr. Maggi has conducted business in 35 countries. Mr. Maggi has held many senior positions in the U.S. Government, military and private sectors, including: Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs, Managing Director of Defense Trade Control, U.S. Coordinator for Counter Piracy, Foreign Policy Advisor to the Chief of Naval Operations, Commanding General of Combined Joint Task Force in Afghanistan and Vice President of Northrop Grumman International. He was a Navy pilot for 20 years. His awards include the Senior Executive Service Presidential Rank Award, the Secretary of Defense Distinguished Superior Service Medal, Air Medal, seven State Department Superior Honor Awards and the Polish Civilian Service Medal. Mr. Maggi studied Government at Fairfield University, International Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School and International Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. Mr. Maggi joined the MAG America Board in 2014.

Loddy E. Tolzmann

Immigration Attorney, Tolzmann and Nordell LLP

Ms. Tolzmann has extensive and well-rounded experience in employment-based immigration, family-based immigration, consular-based processing, and deportation defense. She has represented clients before U.S. Immigration and Citizenship Services, the local immigration courts, and U.S. embassies/consulates worldwide. She received her Juris Doctor degree from the University of St. Thomas School of Law and Bachelor’s degree in Business/Marketing from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. Prior to becoming a partner at Tolzmann and Nordell, Ms. Tolzmann was an associate attorney at Davis and Goldfarb PLLC and also served as the U.S. Branch Manager of a leading international-based immigration and visa consult firm in London. At the University of St. Thomas School of Law, she has served as a Board Director for the Alumni Board and mentor for the law school's mentor program. She is a 2009 recipient of the University of St. Thomas School of Law Alumni Living the Mission Award and has attained St. Thomas' Society of the Arches Socius Approbtus status for her contributions of time and talent to the University community. Ms. Tolzmann is a co-founder of Twin Cities Boxing, a nonprofit amateur boxing program for at-risk youth. Ms. Tolzmann joined the MAG America Board in 2011.

Eric Newsom

Eric D. Newsom was the Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs from November 1998 – January 2001. Mr. Newsom spent nearly thirty years working on foreign affairs and national security in the federal government. Prior to rejoining the Department of State, Mr. Newsom was staff director of the Foreign Operations Subcommittee of the Senate Appropriation Committee from January 1989 to March 1994. From 1987 to 1989, he was Legislative Director and Foreign Policy Adviser to Senator Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont. From 1985 to 1987, Mr. Newsom was minority staff director of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and from 1982 to 1984, he was a professional staff member of that committee. He was an officer in the Foreign Service 1967-79. He became Vice President for International Business at Collins & Company after 32 years in U.S. Government service.

Indika Samarawickreme 

Indika Samarawickreme is the Founder and Managing Director of Genesis International Consulting, a management consulting firm focused on nonprofits and social enterprises. She has led complex strategic transformations, fundraising/revenue generation and program development for global corporations and nonprofits for over 20 years. Previously, she was the head of strategic planning, performance management and organizational design for KPMG Consulting. She has been the chief architect in delivering award winning strategic planning systems, led major turnarounds and has held several leadership positions with nonprofits, both in the US and internationally. Indika holds double Masters and Honors in Accountancy and Economics from the UK. She is a Chartered Accountant, (UK equivalent of US CPA) and holds an MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Ms. Sam joined the MAG America Board in 2015.