Board of Directors

Bess Palmisciano
Bess Palmisciano went from West African tourist to partner when she founded RAIN in 2001.  Previously an attorney, Bess has spent the last 15 years  dividing her time between Niger and the Seacoast area of New Hampshire. She is a member of the NH Advisory Board of the National Global Leadership Coalition and was named by New Hampshire Magazine as one of the state's "Remarkable Women of the World" for 2011.
Barbara Freeman, Co-Chair has cultivated her world-view through a life of study and travel. In the beginning of her career as an architect, she lived and worked in Italy.  She has traveled throughout the western world, the Americas, the mid-east, Southeast Asia, Asia and Africa. Africa and its varied countries and cultures pull her back to the continent and she has been travelling there for enrichment, joy and occasionally, for business, for the past 30 years. She traveled to Ghana many times over seven years to help acquire land and design a Community Resource Center for a US based non-profit.  In addition to her work with RAIN for the Sahel and the Sahara, Barbara supports community work in Botswana and Kenya. While she resides in Newbury, NH, she has family in the UK and a home base in Botswana. A little piece of her heart is always in Liguria, Italy.

         Barbara graduated with a BA in Political Science from Barnard College and a Master’s Degree in Architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Barbara’s architectural firm focuses on collaborative design and master planning.

   Louis Salome, Co-Chair:   A Portsmouth, NH resident and New England native, Lou's ancestral roots reach to the Middle East, and his working life stretches from Massachusetts to Miami, throughout the Middle East and Europe, to Central and Southwest Asia and North and East Africa. His 35 years as a newspaper reporter and editor include 10 years as the Editorial Page Editor at The Miami News and nearly 10 years as the Jerusalem-based Middle East correspondent and the London-based European correspondent for The Atlanta Journal and Constitution along with all newspapers under the Cox Newspapers Group. He is the author of Violence, Veils and Bloodlines - Reporting from War Zones, which chronicles how tribe, religion language, culture, land and history come together to both bind and separate people in conflict.

       Michael Murphy, Treasurer is a licensed CPA. He’s a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, with a Masters degree in taxation from Bentley College. His specialty areas include tax preparation and audit review-compilation services for individuals, businesses, non profits, 401(k) plans and profit sharing plans. He is Treasurer and past President of the National Football Foundation, N.H. Chapter, Past Chairman/President of the NH Football Officials Association, Trustee of the City of Dover Trust Funds, Treasurer of the Joan G. Lovering Health Center, and a Director of the NHSPCA, Stratham.


 Lee Lamson with her Department of State officer husband, Lee traveled and lived in five countries, including Niger.  She worked at each consulate or embassy-- Consular Assistant, Acting Housing Officer, Assistant Personnel Officer, Community Liaison Officer.  After John retired to New Hampshire in 2005, Lee served on the RAIN Board for six years and as a Trustee of the Langdon Library in Newington.   Lee received her BA from Emory University, MS in Psychology from Pennsylvania State University and studied Counselor Education at the University of New Hampshire. 

Rebecca Black recently returned to the US after 25 years with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).  Most recently, she was Mission Chief in Cambodia, managing a diverse assistance portfolio with emphasis on governance and health.  Prior to that, she served as Mission Chief during a period of turmoil  following a Coup d'Etat and rebel take-over of the northern two thirds of the country. Ms. Black also co-led a $2.5 billion assistance program in Afghanistan, and managed economic development and urban environment programs in India, South Africa, and Eastern Europe.  System development and building local capability have been her prime focus throughout her career, as well as commitment to partnerships and collaborative work.  Ms. Black has a Masters in City Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and worked for and in the City of Boston promoting community development prior to beginning her successful career in international development. 


Dr. Angela Browne is a specialist in policy research, use of incarceration, and strategic technical assistance. Angela has worked with solitary confinement, protective custody, self-harm, and acute incidents in corrections systems since 1989, and has consulted to maximum-security prisons, juvenile justice agencies, and city, state, and regional entities in the U.S., Russia, and Greece. She founded Vera’s Segregation Reduction Project in January 2010 and has led comprehensive assessments of restrictive housing in 37 prison facilities across U.S. states’ departments of corrections. Assessments include evaluating a state’s segregation policies and practices based on intensive site visits, interviews with administrators, and analyses of administrative data, and providing recommendations for implementing change. Prior to joining Vera, Angela worked for RTI International in Washington DC and led the Washington DC Policy Initiative, serving as research and policy liaison to the Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Institute of Justice, and other federal agencies. She was also Principal Investigator of a study of trends in homicide and severe violence by youth during 1984-2006 for the 100 largest cities in the United States, funded by the National Institute of Justice. Dr. Browne served as Associate Director of the Youth Violence Prevention Center at Harvard University from 1998–2006; consulted to the CDC, NIJ, and BJS on interpersonal violence, effects of experiences with violence, and social policy; and consulted with Florida's Department of Juvenile Justice on system responses to youth with trauma histories.
Gaylen Moore is President of Gaylen Moore Program Evaluation Services in New York City. The company provides evaluation of K-12 public education programs funded by local, state and federal grants, including grants from the U.S. department of Education, the national Science Foundation, NOAA, and NASA. For 30 years she has been evaluating the efficacy and impact of programs on teacher and student populations in science, mathematics, ESL, social studies, literacy, and character eduation for schools and informal education insitutions in Cleveland, Ohio; Jackson, Mississippi; Waltham; Massachusetts; five New England states; and New York City. She was formerly a journalist and freelance writer for Time inc., ABC News, and the New York Times.



Alison *Sunny" Coady is a graduate of Colby College with a BA in Art History and a minor in Mathematics. She pursued a career in IT and retired as HR Director of the IT Department at NYNEX (now Verizon). Born with a scoliosis, she is a volunteer at Easterseals, an organization that helps people with disabilities live, learn, work and play in their communities. She has served terms as Board Chair of Massachusetts Easterseals, where she is now an Honorary Lifetime Board Member, and on the Board of National Easterseals were she chairs its Emeritus Board. Hobbies have been sailing, travel and golden retrievers. Sailing has included bare boating in the Seychelles, Tonga, Greece and the Caribbean. Travels have been to most European countries, Turkey, Thailand, India, China, Brazil, Russia, southern Africa and Morocco. 13 litters of her Golden Retrievers populated the Boston area with wonderful dogs. She now resides in New London, NH.   



The most legendary of Tuareg leaders was Tin Hinan, a Berber princess from Morocco, believed to have ruled in the fourth or fifth century A.D.
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