The WAGGGS Western Hemisphere Regional Committee is elected by Member Organisation delegates at our Regional Conference.
The Regional Conference is the body that governs the Region and is held once every three years. All Member Organisations in the Region are invited to send a delegation to the Regional Conference, which takes place in a different country every triennium.
The Conference elects six members to the Regional Committee for a period of three years. Members may be re-elected for an additional period, thus serving a maximum of six years. At least one of the Committee members must be a young woman under 30 years of age at the time of the election.
Stefanie is a mission-driven leader and a change agent who champions equity. She presently is a full-time doctoral student pursuing a PhD in Education at the University of Rhode Island / Rhode Island College. She also serves as a National Volunteer Partner with Girl Scouts USA. Stefanie recently served in non-profit staff leadership roles as the Chief Mission Officer of YWCA Rhode Island and as the Senior Director of Girl Experience with Girl Scouts of Southeastern New England.
Stefanie has been an active WAGGGS volunteer for more than a decade, inspired after spending a spring season volunteering at Our Chalet in 2012. Following this experience, she became a Lead Facilitator for the Stop the Violence campaign. She joined the Regional Committee in July 2019. Stefanie is ready to provide solid skills related to strategic planning, fund development, educational methodology, communications, diversity and advocacy work, research and evaluation, and partnership collaborations. She is excited to support growth for a vibrant Western Hemisphere and is humbled to be of service to our Member Organisations in the role of Regional Committee Chair.
Stefanie holds a Master of Arts in Adventure Education and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology & Education. She is a Lifetime member of Girl Scouts USA, having joined at age 5, and is a proud Gold Award Girl Scout. For fun, Stefanie enjoys hiking, Zumba instructing, geocaching, and cuddling with her two Pembroke Welsh Corgis.
Maria Emilia Cadario
Emilia is from Córdoba, Argentina and has been a member of the Asociación Guías Argentinas for more than 35 years. Her experience in Guiding in Argentina made her a passionate volunteer of the movement, founding a Guide group and promoting the opening of several Guide groups in her province.
With the Asociación Guías Argentinas, she is a national trainer with international recognition, and has been a member of the National Council, serving as Head of the National Program. In this role, she led the national implementation of WAGGGS' programs, including "Voices Against Violence", "Free Being Me", "Surf Smart" and "Add Your Voice".
Within her Member Organization, Emilia has driven the design and implementation of virtual trainings and trainings for volunteers on multiple topics. Together with the National Program Committee, she collaborated in the creation and launch of a Child Protection Policy for the Asociación Guías Argentinas and organized national teams that promote inclusion.
During the 2019-2022 triennium, Emilia served as Vice President of the Regional Committee, leading the Member Organization Relations portfolio and serving as the liaison with the Capacity Building Team (CAT). She also led the Regional Volunteer teams that delivered the events "Leaders for a Better World" (for girls) and "Celebrating Governance" (for young women), responding to the motions passed at the 2019 Regional Conference in Grenada.
Emi desires that more young women and girls experience Girl Guiding and Girl Scouting in the Region. Therefore, she is committed to supporting strong and vibrant Member Organizations, where young women and girls can practice their leadership and be the change in their communities.
Emilia studied journalism and specialized in institutional communication, working for more than 28 years in a law firm of legal professionals and also in independent projects. A recent project was the production of a documentary series called "The Human Side of War", which was broadcast on local television. The documentary that had a high impact and great recognition by the public and local media.
Emilia enjoys spending time outdoors with her family, traveling and attending the Cura Brochero Guide Community in Córdoba and loves to write children's stories, many of which she uses to complement the activities of the Guides.
Susan Birnie is from Ontario, Canada. After having been a girl member of Girl Guides of Canada, Susan’s adult experiences in Girl Guides of Canada span more than 35 years. Her leadership positions at local, provincial and national levels have given her insight into the value of Girl Guides in her own country, and her encounters with staff, volunteers and girls from other Member Organizations has broadened her understanding of the benefits of belonging to Girl Guides.
Through her work on the Capacity Building Finance and Fundraising teams she has come to understand the needs of other Member Organizations, where finance, membership and leadership are often interconnected. Susan hopes to use her knowledge and skills to benefit our MOs within a broader framework.
Susan’s hopes and vision for the region in the next triennium are first to advance the mission and vision of WAGGGS. She believes that growing membership is vital to the health of each Member Organization, as well as to our desire to bring the value that Girl Guides/Girl Scouts can provide to as many girls and women as possible. Her vision includes attracting young women who have a lot to offer to be involved in the leadership of the Member Organization. It includes having those women be role models for the girls, to encourage and enable every girl to feel confident to lead, in line with our girl-led philosophy. Our materials and programs must provide girls a voice as well as the confidence to change their world through their own development and improving the lives of others.
Susan’s education includes graduate degrees in Urban and Regional Planning and a Masters of Business Administration majoring in Finance.. Most recently she was the Executive Director of Health Sciences Education at a major university.
Outside of Girl Guides, Susan is the President of the McMaster University Retirees Association. She enjoys travelling and photography.
Abigail Christmas is an enthusiast and feminist from the Nature Isle of the Caribbean, the Commonwealth of Dominica. She is currently an undergraduate student pursuing degrees in Law and Political Science at University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus.
Abigail is a very active member in her national association, the Girl Guides Association of Dominica, and has been very influential in the planning and implementation of activities in that association. She has served as the Public Relations Officer and Chairperson of the Advocacy Committee, Public Relations Officer on the national council, and has sat as a member of several other committees within the Girl Guides Association of Dominica, including the Planning and Program Committee, the Fundraising Committee, and the Project Committee. Although Abigail has been a leader within the Girl Guides Association for under 5 years, she has left her marked by spearheading initiatives within the association for charity, world issues, creativity and unity among girls, advocacy training of girls and leaders and the implementation of many of WAGGGS’s programs in her country.
Abigail has had the privilege to represent her Member Organisation at several WAGGGS virtual trainings and activities. This includes but is not limited to her participation in the Free Being Me Young Women’s Advocacy Forum 2020 cohort and the Caribbean Champions for Change Workshop 2022. She also served as a WAGGGS Giving Day Ambassador in 2021 and 2022, and she had the privilege to speak as a panelist at the Olave Baden Powell Society webinar, "Helping Create an Equal World Where All Girls Can Thrive" in 2021. Furthermore, Abigail was able to work alongside a dedicated team of sister Guides from across all Regions to rewrite the Free Being Me curriculum in 2021. Moreover, Abigail’s most recent achievement within the Guiding movement, before being elected as a Western Hemisphere Committee member, included being inducted as a WAGGGS Core Mission Volunteer with the Girl Led Advocacy Volunteer Team. She played an impactful role as an organiser of a march for child abuse prevention in Dominica where over 200 girls and women were able to parade the streets of her capital city, Roseau, demanding policy change for the protection of children.
Additionally, following Abigail’s participation in the Free Being Me Young Women’s Advocacy Forum in 2020, she was able to create an advocacy platform of her own called Perfect In My Own Skin. Since then, she has been actively striving to raise awareness for self acceptance and body positivity, taking action on body confidence through her social media platforms, her podcast, and by speaking at various forums including schools and radio talk shows.
Abigail believes that her purpose is to be a voice for those who cannot speak up for themselves and it is for this reason she is driven by representing minorities, especially women. Female empowerment is her main goal; therefore, she is confident and eager to play her part in empowering the young women and girls in the Western Hemisphere Region as she serves as a Committee Member from 2022-2025.
Patricia has been a member of Guías de México since the age of 7. She is part of Guías de México's National Training Team, serving as a National Coach, and have various international facilitation experiences, as well. Patricia was also part of the 2015-2019 National Steering Committee, serving as International Commissioner. Currently she is the Coordinator of the UPS Project, "Diversity and Inclusion".
As a member of the Western Hemisphere Region Committee since July 2019, she fervently desire to collaborate for the unity of all our Member Organisations. Patricia hopes to contribute her positive energy and happiness to foster friendship and work collaboratively. She wishes to leverage the resources of all Member Organisations for others and contributing to achieve a vibrant region.
She is an electrical mechanical engineer, professional adult trainer, and specialist in Management and Improvement of Organisational Processes. For 15 years Patricia has operated her own consulting and training company dedicated to the development and implementation of Quality Management Systems based on International Organisation for Standardization (ISO) standards.
Patricia is visionary, passionate, cheerful, fun, dedicated and always willing to support.
Bárbara Muñoz Madariaga
Bárbara has been a leader for the Asociación de Guías y Scouts de Chile for more than 10 years. Professionally, she is a Chemical Engineer and is currently studying for a Master's degree in Chemical Engineering in order to be able to dedicate herself to research. From the area of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), she seeks to promote a creative and critical thinking mindset in accordance with the WAGGGS Leadership Model.
In her Member Organisation, she worked as a guide and leader of girls between 11 -15 years old, and young people between 15 - 17 years old. In addition to programming at group, district, zone, and national levels, she has continued to grow in her training, being able to contribute as a trainer of courses, and supported the area of volunteering with tools and ideas. Moreover, she participated in the international commission, coordination of the Agenda 2030 for the SDGs, and in the drafting of the Youth Participation Policy. Together with other volunteers from her MO, they created and developed a game called Re-Acciona! that links to the WAGGGS Leadership Model and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Bárbara has contributed both regionally and globally to the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts. Within the Western Hemisphere Region, being a volunteer has allowed her to participate in webinars, activities, events, and in other various instances of growth. She has been able to contribute as a translator and as a consecutive interpreter, as well as in the creation and development of a leadership event for young women. Worldwide, she was a volunteer in the Core Mission Team for more than a year, where she contributed specifically to the Leadership Practice team. Some of the projects she has been involved with are: Leadership Model sessions for volunteers from the global community, supporting Member Organizations, and creating a Leadership Model activity pack for girls and young women. In addition, she participated in the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) 2021 as a WAGGGS volunteer, in the podcast recording for the Leadership Model, the Surf Smart program, and the International Day of the Girl, and in the development of Europe Region's Finding Our Path toolkit.
Finally, Barbara is passionate about teamwork. She loves time with her friends, tea, cats, dancing, and having a good time!
Bibiana (Bibi) has been a Girl Guide since she was 6 years old. She is Mexican and lives in Mexico City. Bibi started working for WAGGGS in December 2020. She is passionate about solving problems, always has a positive attitude, and loves international studies, process development, strategic planning, and meeting new people. She is a nature lover and an empowerment enthusiast.
Past Regional Committee Members
2019 - 2022
Cindy-Ann Alexander (Grenada), Chair
Maria Emilia Cadario (Argentina), Vice-Chair
Stefanie Argus (USA)
Saudia Edghill (Guyana) - young woman under age 30
Patricia Marroquín (Mexico)
Andrea Nieto (Colombia) - young woman under age 30
2016 - 2019
Joey Rosenberg (USA), Chair
Franca Mazzotti (Peru), Vice-Chair
Cindy-Ann Alexander (Grenada)
Sandra Cuéllar (Costa Rica)
Adrienne Edmunds (Canada)
Teru Pierret Correa (Chile)
2013 - 2016
Grace-Anne Crichlow (Barbados), Chair
Rochelle Ford (St. Vincent & the Grenadines), Vice-Chair
Adrienne Edmunds (Canada)
Schemel Patrick (Guyana)
Meredith Petrona-Martina (Curaçao)
Joey Rosenberg (USA)
2010 - 2013
Perla Casco Perez (Honduras), Chair
Kika Ramsay (Canada), Vice-Chair
Sylvia Acevedo (USA)
Diana Correa (Mexico)
Grace-Anne Crichlow (Barbados)
Miryam Justo (Peru)
2007 - 2010
Maria Elena Murillo (Costa Rica), Chair
Perla Casco Perez (Honduras), Vice-Chair
Laura Salvador (Ecuador)
Tanya Dawkins (USA)
Rechanne Browne (St. Vincent & the Grenadines)
Kika Ramsay (Canada)
2004 - 2007
Angela Dawson (Canada), Chair
Gabriela Derosa (Argentina), Vice-Chair
Rechanne Browne (St. Vincent & the Grenadines)
Tanya Dawkins (USA)
Candida Morales (Brazil)
Maria Elena Murillo (Costa Rica)
2001 - 2004
Toni Martinez Burgogne (USA), Chair
Gisela Lammerts van Bueren (Panama), Vice-Chair
Angela Dawson (Canada)
Gabriela Derosa (Argentina)
Jillian Hills (Trinidad & Tobago)
Maria Monzarz (Peru)