Direct Relief Welcomes Three New Directors to Board

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Direct Relief has elected to its board three new directors, each bringing considerable business, nonprofit, and government expertise and acumen to bear for the organization’s ongoing humanitarian efforts.

Mary M. Dwyer, PhD, Lieutenant General Stayce D. Harris, and Tim Wertner began their respective three-year terms on June 24, 2021.

“Direct Relief is privileged to welcome these impressively accomplished individuals to our board and looks forward to leveraging the unique perspectives and passions that they bring to expand on the organization’s mission to mobilize essential medical resources across the U.S. and around the world,” said Pamela Gann, Direct Relief’s Board Chair.

Mary M. Dwyer, PhD, served from 1996-2020 as President & CEO of IES Abroad, one of the nation’s oldest, largest and most academically reputable not-for-profit study abroad program providers in the world. She is now President & CEO Emerita.

Dwyer is preeminent in the field of international higher education, particularly the study abroad field, both with respect to U.S. university students studying outside the United States, and foreign students from East Asia studying in universities in the United States. She is the first female CEO of a study abroad provider, and she has made considerable efforts to support women in the study abroad field. Prior to IES Abroad, Dwyer was a faculty member in the College of Medicine at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) for 18 years and the campus Executive Associate Vice Chancellor for Research.

Dwyer has consulted extensively during her career and been called upon by an array of U.S. and international organizations across 20 developed and emerging countries, including the World Health Organization (WHO), Global Ministries of health and education, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. She was a founding member, Board Vice Chair, and Board Chair of the Forum on Education Abroad. She was also one of two study abroad professionals appointed by the U.S. Congress to serve on the Abraham Lincoln Commission on Study Abroad, a bi-partisan, Presidential and Congressional Commission formed in 2003 to explore ways to increase the number of American students abroad. She is also featured on the Crain’s Chicago Business Notable Women Executives Over 50 list, recipient of the PIEoneer Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Industry and the Lifetime Advocate for Inclusivity Award from Women in International Education.

Lieutenant General Stayce D. Harris is a retired three-star general whose distinguished career of service spanned over 37 years before retiring in March 2019 from the U.S. Air Force. From 2017-2019, General Harris’ C-suite executive experience included leading as the Inspector General of the Air Force and prior as the Air Force Assistant Vice Chief of Staff and Director, Air Staff at Headquarters U.S. Air Force in the Pentagon.

As the 22nd Air Force Commander at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, GA for the U.S. Air Force Reserve Command from 2014-2016, her responsibilities included leading tactical airlift operations, civil engineering rapid response, distinguished visitor airlift and pilot training. She served at multiple levels in her career as a senior executive with over 18 years’ experience running large technology organizations involved in aerospace transportation, engineering, logistics, human capital management, crisis management, international relations, ethics and compliance. General Harris has received many awards and decorations including the Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal, and the Legion of Merit. She was the first African American woman to command an Air Force operational flying squadron, wing and numbered Air Force. She also served as the first woman Inspector General of the Air Force.

She was inducted into the Women in Aviation International Pioneer Hall of Fame and Palm Springs Air Museum Aviation Hall of Fame, awarded the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers Captains of Industry Award, USC Viterbi School of Engineering Mark A. Stevens Distinguished Alumni Award and Ellis Island Medal of Honor amongst others.

She is also a retired United Airlines pilot and serves as a Director of the Four Freedoms Park Conservancy, a Board of Councilor for the USC Viterbi School of Engineering, and Trustee for the U.S. Air Force Academy Falcon Foundation.

Tim Wertner is Senior Vice President of U.S. Operations, Western Division, for FedEx Express. Wertner has worked for FedEx since 1986 in multiple roles, including Vice President of the Memphis World Hub, Senior Vice President for Air Ground Freight Services, and Senior Vice President of U.S. Domestic Express Operations.

In his current role at FedEx, Wertner develops operational strategies for more than 50,000 employees, 3 million daily packages, 375 daily flights, and with an annual operating budget of $4.2B. Wertner has managed operational and capital budgets, cold chain facility implementation, as well as logistics planning for domestic and international flight deliveries. A Fortune 100 Leader with a strong background as a proven leader in service, people management and generating superior financial returns, Wertner has a demonstrated record of exceeding profitability goals.
In addition to Direct Relief’s Board of Directors, Wertner also serves on the board of Intelvative. He is a passionate advocate for Women in Aviation. He is also a managing officer with the On Deck Program, a FedEx Global mentorship program that trains and mentors employees for leadership.

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