Maritza Rivera Centeno

Maritza Rivera has a B.S in Ecology and Natural Resources, and a Master in Economics with emphasis on Projects Investment. She has over 15 years of experience in project design and management related with natural resources and environment, Global Climate Change, food and nutrition security and as well as rural community development, disaster preparedness and follow-up to management plans –involving the identification and management of environmental and social impacts on rural business, watershed and road infrastructure.

Ms. Rivera was the Millennium Challenge Account- Nicaragua Environment and Social Impact Director, (October 2006-August 2011). Prior to this position she served as Mission Environmental Officer for the US Agency for International Development – USAID (1999-sept. 2006).

Ms. Rivera has been Project Director for Protected Areas and Biodiversity, and has held other public service positions in the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (1988-1998). Also she has over 12 years of work experience with international development agencies and organizations in which she held managerial positions and assumed decision-making roles. Additionally, Ms. Rivera has participated in strategic, operational and financial planning process involving national and municipal authorities, community and private partnerships, NGOs and other key stakeholders from territories of influence on which the projects were implemented.

Armando Ugarte

Mr. Armando Ugarte holds a PhD in Technical Sciences. He has over 20 years of experience on risk and vulnerability issues at the national and international levels.

In recent years it has been one of the leading experts in risk management and vulnerability to natural phenomena in Nicaragua.

Mr. Ugarte has extensive experience in the application of "Risk Measurement Index" at the municipal level. He has participated as an evaluator in emergency hurricanes' damages and evaluation of other hydro-meteorological phenomena of recent decades, both in Nicaragua and in the region.

Dr. Ugarte is one of the national leading experts on the formulation and update of the National Response Plan and the Operating Plan for Disaster Actions at SINAPRED. He has participated in the formulation of projects for the identification of vulnerable areas across Nicaragua. Dr. Ugarte has extensive experience in vulnerability and climate change, at the watershed level as an amplifier element of natural disasters. He also has experience in planning for climate change and risk prevention. He has served as an international speaker on issues related to risk and vulnerability and is a permanent lecturer at several universities in Nicaragua.

Dr. Ugarte has published several articles on risk management and vulnerability assessment. He has received awards and medals for his outstanding work on natural disasters both in Nicaragua and El Salvador.

Sandramaría Sanchez

Mrs. Sandramaría Sanchez is an Ecologist and holds a Master Degree in Soil and Watershed Management and Conservation from the University of Tennessee (UTK). Knoxville, Tennessee.

Sandramaría Sanchez is the Executive President of the Firm Sanchez Argüello y Asociados. She has more than 34 years of experience in the environmental field con focus on environmental impact assessment, environmental management plans, sustainable development and environmental studies in the infrastructure and energy sector.

Mrs. Sanchez has been an honorary consultant for the Cleaner Production Center (CPC) in Nicaragua evaluating companies proposed for the Cleaner Production award.

Mrs. Sanchez has among her working areas: pre investments' studies, energy- related infrastructure and studies (generation - renewable and non-renewable energy, transmission and distribution lines, electrical substations). She has experience in housing developments, roads, tourism, environmental management of chains production for agricultural and food products, including post-harvest management, community building, among others.

Gabriel Antonio Alvarez Argüello

Mr. Alvarez holds a PhD inLaws from the University of Barcelona, Spain. He has taught law at the National Autonomous University of Nicaragua since 1988. He has given lectures and seminars at universities in different countries. He is a consultant in legal and business counsel issues.

Doctor Alvarez is the author of several books on topics related to Constitutional and other legal issues and has written extensively in leading newspapers in Nicaragua.

Dr. Alvarez is a member of the American Institute of Constitutional Law, Academician of the Nicaraguan Academy of Law and Political Science and member of the Inter-American Federation of Lawyers.

Founder of the firm "ConsultoresCentroamericanos y Associados" (CCA) and a founding member of the regional law firm "OfficiumLex" with offices in Central America and Dominican Republic.He is a member of the Editorial Board of the newspaper "La Prensa", the largest newspaper in the country, and is on the Board of several civil society organizations involved in Governance.

Marianela Rocha Zuniga

Marianela Rocha is a Lawyer with a Master Degree on Environmental Impact Assessmentfrom Institute of Ecological Investigation – Malaga, Spain.

In 1997 Mrs. Rocha was head of the Environmental Attorney's Office for the Protection of Natural Resources and Environment, where among other responsibilities she coordinated the component "Environmental Laws" of the "Environmental Law and Policies" Project sponsored byCentral American Commission of Environment and Development (ComisiónCentroamericana de Ambiente y Desarrollo CCAD). She was founder of the Environmental Prosecutors Network of Centralamerica and Dominican Republic under the auspices of the Commission on Environment and Development.

Marianela Rocha has served as Executive Assistant to the Attorney General of Nicaragua where, among other roles,she was responsible for the development of projects for strengthening the Public Ministry.

She has worked with various organizations in Nicaragua and in Central America, Panama and the Dominican Republic in matters related to Environmental Law, Administrative Law, and Municipal Law. Mainly in the development of environmental standards, manuals, diagnostics, training and organization and capacity development.

Mrs. Rocha has taught Municipal and Environmental Law in graduate and postgraduate programs at several universities in Nicaragua.

Daniel Malenfánt

Master in Sociology, degree in Social Communication, with 25 years of professional international experience in policies and practices of Rural Development Social Environmental Development, Social Forestry as well as Environmental and Social Impact Assessments. International experience acquired in Central and Latin America (Nicaragua, El Salvador, Panama, Paraguay and other countries), and in Africa (Angola, Benin, Ghana, Niger, Madagascar, Mozambique). Wide experience in management and supervision of projects and coordination of multidisciplinary teams.Orientated towards capacity development and organizational strengthening.Fluent in French, English and Spanish, notions of Portuguese.

Margarita Lorio Castillo

Is a Biologist with a Master Degree in Business Administration and Natural Resources at the InstitutoCentroamericano de Administración de Empresas (INCAE). She has over 20 years of professional experience in both public and private sectors. She has coordinated multidisciplinary team for Project Evaluation.

Margarita Lorio has extensive experience in the design, evaluation and systematization of development projects. She has worked extensively on issues related to Disasters and Food Safety, facing the challenges posed by climate change and the needs for adaptation. Her main areas of work are: Rural Development, Agroecology, Food Security and Nutrition, Local Development, Environment, Risk Management, Gender Equality and Community Organization. She has also worked in writing and editing technical documents and popular editions, systematization of experiences and Logical Framework Approach.