Staff and Leadership


John Oldfield – CEO, WASH Advocates

John Oldfield’s previous experience with safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene comes from founding two implementing nonprofits in the sector, and his tenure as Executive Vice President with Water Advocates, dedicated to increasing financial and political support for worldwide access to safe, affordable and sustainable supplies of drinking water and adequate sanitation.

Prior to Water Advocates, John was a Vice President at a New York private equity firm specializing in leveraged buyouts and corporate divestitures. John has also been with The Conference Board, a New York-based economic research firm which produces the well-known Leading Economic Indicators and Consumer Confidence Index. While there he launched and managed two innovative online services, including a corporate training business.

Prior to The Conference Board, John was with the National Academy of Sciences, where he researched science, technology, and economic policy issues. He also has extensive international management experience with USAID and U.S. Department of State contracts, including training programs for election officials, civil society, and foreign media, as well as civil/military communication projects in post-conflict countries.

John Oldfield leads the efforts of WASH Advocates to increase awareness of the global WASH challenge and solutions, and to increase the amount and effectiveness of resources devoted to those solutions throughout the developing world. He believes strongly that the global safe drinking water, sanitation, and hygiene crisis is more solvable than it is difficult. Contact:

Rebecca Fishman – Operations and Special Projects Director

Rebecca primarily focuses on WASH Advocates’ women and gender portfolio. Prior to joining WASH Advocates, Rebecca worked at the United Nations Foundation, where she managed a variety of health-related initiatives and played a key role in implementing innovative public-private partnerships. With her focus on improving access and services for individuals in resource-poor settings over the past ten years, Rebecca has become a leader in the nonprofit sector. She honed her project management and operations skills in the fast-paced world of academic medicine (Mount Sinai and NYU Medical Centers) and field placements with nongovernmental organizations in developing countries. In India, she provided operational and strategic consulting to a group serving marginalized communities of girls, domestic workers, and single women in Chennai’s slums through education, organization, and advocacy. She also volunteered with a leading social aid organization in Argentina teaching English and caring for underprivileged children. Rebecca received Masters and Bachelors degrees from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.  Contact:

Ben Mann – Global Partnerships Director

Ben has been a leader in the nonprofit community for more than ten years, with the last 5 years in assignments at the American Lung Association and Arthritis Foundation.  A well-recognized expert in volunteer management, Ben has a talent for connecting people with their passions and turning that connection into new opportunities for leadership. His interest is to build diverse and dynamic funding and resource opportunities within the water, sanitation, and hygiene sector, including work with corporate, governmental, or other partners, not excluding various faith communities and private foundations.  Ben is a former chair of the diaconate at Calvary Baptist Church in Washington, DC.  He was appointed to the Governor’s Arthritis Advisory Council by Governor Martin O’Malley of Maryland in 2010.  Ben received his Master of Public Administration from the University of Missouri – Kansas City and his Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from Baylor University. Contact:

Cecilia Snyder – Communications Director

Cecilia Snyder has worked for twenty years in the field of international health focusing on education and outreach through new technologies. She was executive editor of several global health news services for journalists, and has used online tools as well as traditional print media to disseminate information while working at Bread for the World Institute, the Panos Institute, CEDPA, the Population Council, and the Communications Consortium Media Center. Within the U.S. government sector, Cecilia has provided information management and strategic communications solutions to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). Cecilia has also designed several print publications and scientific posters for hard copy and electronic distribution. She received a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies from Georgetown University (focusing on image ethics of nonprofit advocacy organizations) and a Bachelor of Science in Sociology from Virginia Tech. Contact:

Jordan Teague – Program Associate

Jordan provides support for the sustainability and integration portfolios at WASH Advocates. This includes support for development of MERL in the sector, increasing the amount and effectiveness of funding and programs in the WASH sector, strengthening sustainability of WASH, and advocating for effective integration of WASH into other development sectors, including nutrition, gender, HIV/AIDS, education, and conservation. Prior to this position, Jordan was the WASH & Nutrition Fellow at WASH Advocates. Jordan was also a Community Water Solutions Fellow in Ghana, where she helped women establish water treatment businesses for their communities. Jordan will receive her Master of Public Health from George Washington University and received her Bachelor of Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Contact:

Elynn Walter – Sustainability Director

Elynn Walter focuses on advocacy, accountability, and sustainability for water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH). In that capacity, Elynn works with government, nonprofit, academic, and private sector partners to increase the amount and effectiveness of global WASH. She has facilitated advocacy workshops and coordinated multi-day forums to address sustainability and integration for WASH. Elynn previously worked as the WASH Sustainability Director for the WASH Advocacy Initiative as well as the Program Director of Global Water, Health and Schools at Water Advocates. In addition, she has worked in private industry and for the U.S. Department of State. She was a George Washington University Global Health Service Fellow in Almaty, Kazakhstan and served as a Community Health Educator for the Peace Corps in Turkmenistan. Elynn received her Master of Public Health from George Washington University and her Bachelor of Arts from James Madison University. Contact:

Steering Committee

  • Ned Breslin – CEO, Water For People
  • Monica Ellis – CEO, Global Water Challenge
  • Peter Lochery – Senior Advisor for Water, Sanitation, and Environmental Health, CARE
  • Steve Werner – Consultant, and former Executive Director, Water For People
  • Gary White, Chairman – Executive Director,
WASH Advocates | 1506 21st Street NW, Suite 200 Washington DC 20036 | 202-293-4002 |