Staff (U.S. and Niger)


U.S. Staff
Katherine Kolios
Executive Director

As a global health and development professional, Katherine has over 5 years of interdisciplinary experience with international education, sexual and reproductive health, nutrition, and malaria prevention. She joined RAIN with valuable experience living, working, and studying in Francophone communities throughout Africa, South America, and Europe. Katherine is a graduate of Brandeis University. She seeks to help others maximize their quality-of-life through education, empowerment to make healthy choices, and expansion of infrastructure. Katherine is the chief donor contact for Rain for the Sahel and Sahara and can be reached at

Freya Hoffman-Terry
Office Manager

Freya has extensive experience in the non-profit world. She has managed youth development programs for the YMCA of Southern Maine, A's & Aces (a tennis, literacy and lifeskills organization in New Orleans) and Boston Scores (a soccer, poetry and service learning nonprofit). Prior to her youth development work, Freya served in the U.S. Peace Corps, in the Philippines, where she conducted environmental education lessons and organized a literacy program. Freya received a BA in Sociology, from William Smith College. She lives with her husband, Jake, in Kennebunk, Maine.

Niamey Staff
Brian Nowak
Niger Program Director

Brian obtained a B.A in Anthropology from and an M.A in Education. Brian's strong passion for Niger was first kindled as a BU exchange student. He is a certified elementary school teacher with five years of teaching experience in NYC public schools. Brian lives in an adobe, solar-powered house on the outskirts of Niamey. He taught at the American International School in Niamey and Study Abroad Program in Niger, and has consulted for Red Cross and Red Crescent, IRD, Plan Niger, and OXFAM. He has conducted research on urban street children, folk music, spirit possession, and pastoral communities.

Salifu Kountche
Naimey Office Manager / Bookkeeper

Gaston Kaba
RAIN Translator

Gaston has served as the Director of the Health Program with the Peace Corps, for which he has also been commissioned as a Language Instructor and Training Director. From 2001 to 2008 he implemented more than 60 development and humanitarian projects in the Sub Sahara region. He has served as the Special Assistant to the Director of USAID/Niger in Policy and Programming; he has also served as Secretary General for the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Technology in Niamey, Niger. He speaks English, French and Hausa. He's married with three children.

Akhoud Mawala,

Abdousalam Dourkari

With over 15 years of experience at the intersection of agriculture, relief, and community development, Abdoul-Salam Dourkari Kaneye, RAIN’s Agriculture Specialist, brings a level of expertise in not only agricultural programs, but their implementation across Niger. Abdoul-Salam received his M.S. in Agronomics at Abdou Moumouni University in Niamey and is fluent in Djerma, Hausa, and French. His areas of expertise include soil science, plant production, animal husbandry, rural engineering, rural economies, & participatory approaches to community programming. Prior to working with RAIN, Abdoul-Salam oversaw monitoring and evaluation for an ADROC pastoralism project in Tera. He has also done Food Security work with international organizations including Coopération Technique Belge and AMURT International.

Agadez Staff
Alhassane Aboubacar
Agadez Learning Center Director

Alhassene's broad experience in the nonprofit sector spans from working with people who have been handicapped in mining accidents to combating plastic waste. His passion and focus are working with youth. He comes to RAIN having worked with youth at numerous other NGOs, including UNFPA and Mercy Corps, on topics including vocational training, life skills training, reproductive health, self-confidence and entrepreneurship.

Djibrilla Mahamane
Field Agent

Azara Touma Touma Ibrahim
Women and Children Specialist

Azara has been working with NGOs, including OXFAM and SNV's "Youth, Advocacy, Women, Work and Alliances" project, since 2003. Her focus has been on literacy, reproductive health and leadership training. She is also an entrepreneur and has a passion for women's cooperative work. She plays a crucial role in training program participants and on-the-ground monitoring of program implementation.

Fewer than 15% of West Africa's Niger nomads are literate.
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