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Rainbow Railroad Announces New Head of Impact and Head of Operations Appointments


Rainbow Railroad is pleased to announce that it has hired two senior sector leaders to support its continued growth and the advancement of our global mission to help LGBTQI+ individuals escape persecution and violence.

Joining the organization as the Head of Impact is Kathryn Hampton (She/Her), and joining the organization as Head of Operations is Becky McFarlane (They/She). 

“In my time as Executive Director, Rainbow Railroad has gone through exponential growth that has impacted thousands of lives. We are now at a stage where we need additional leadership to prepare us to help more people and manage a huge spike in requests for assistance. Both Becky and Kathryn bring a depth of experience, expertise, and leadership to Rainbow Railroad. These two new senior sector leaders will help myself and the rest of the management team as we prepare for a new strategic plan that will take our work even further,” said Executive Director, Kimahli Powell. 

About Kathryn Hampton (She/Her) – Head of Impact:

Kathryn has extensive experience in the world of Human Rights advocacy, working in senior leadership roles with organizations such as Physicians for Human Rights – New York; OSCE Special Monitoring mission to Ukraine – Ukraine; International Rescue Committee – Turkey; World Vision – Iraq; International Commission for Missing Persons – Iraq; Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe – Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Kathryn brings expertise from a Master’s in International Human Rights Law from the University of Oxford, a Masters in Refugee Protection and Forced Migration from the University of London, and a Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University. Kathryn has several academic and op-ed publications centered around Human Rights and Forced Migration.

“It is a dream come true to join Rainbow Railroad as Head of Impact, and to have the opportunity to work for such a visionary and innovative organization at a time of terrifying attacks on LGBTQIA+ refugees. Rainbow Railroad’s explosive growth in impact and reach in response to these human rights violations exemplifies empowerment, solidarity, resistance and resilience. I am excited to bring my prior experience in case management, policy advocacy and research in refugee and forced displacement issues in Bosnia, Ukraine, Iraq, Turkey and the U.S-Mexico border, to evolve together to meet the challenges ahead,” said Kathryn. 

The HOI will be a member of the senior leadership team with responsibility for continued organizational development across strategy, programs, and policy, and will function as a key strategic and thought partner to Rainbow Railroad’s Executive Director. 

 

About Becky McFarlane (They/She) – Head of Operations:

Becky has spent her career in the non-profit sector and has been the Director of Programs and Community Services at the 519 for the past 10 years. In this role they were instrumental

in growing the department from having two supervisors, to a thriving department with three directors, and 60 unionized staff who oversee work in operations; advocacy and education; settlement; legal advising; community engagement and more.

Among their responsibilities was settlement work, including developing programs and services to support over 1,500 queer, trans, and non-binary refugees each year. Becky brings considerable training and education in a range of disciplines, some of which include transformative justice, advancing anti-racism and equity, crisis prevention and intervention, health and safety committee training, and a Bachelor of Arts in Women’s studies from York University.

“I’m extraordinarily excited to be joining the team at Rainbow Railroad, who despite every obstacle created within the social and economic context of a global pandemic, have continued to maneuver strategically and nimbly as they respond to the very real and imminent dangers faced by LGBTQI+ people around the world.  Having spent decades working in community organizing and movement building roles in Canada and the US, taking on a position that will support efforts to enhance individual and collective safety for queer and trans people while contributing to global solidarity and international human rights movements will no doubt be an incredible opportunity for me both personally and professionally.” said Becky.

The Head of Operations will be a member of the senior leadership team with responsibility for continued organizational development across operations, finance, planning and administration, and human resources.

 

For further information, please reach out to media@rainbowrailroad.org