Partners With Ethiopia is a U.S.-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Our Federal EIN is 27-3355413. Our team consists of long-term donors who are passionate about the projects we support.
Ingrid Olson – Executive Director
Ingrid lives in Golden Valley, MN with her husband and their three boys. Her passion for fighting poverty began in 1991 as a volunteer for a local organization impacting children in lower income areas of her hometown. A desire to be more effective led her to pursued a B.A. degree in cross-cultural studies from Moody Bible Institute. After graduating and marrying in 1997, she spent 17 years reaching out to children and youth in North Minneapolis. In 2010, the story of an Ethiopian widow inspired her to travel to Ethiopia to look for a local organization to support. After returning, her focus on poverty shifted to Ethiopia. Since January 2011, she has been supporting SHAPEthiopia’s efforts in southern Ethiopia. Ingrid uses her Instagram to bring attention to the needs in Ethiopia.
Benjamin Tramm – Board Member
Ben’s first real experience with poverty was on a service project trip in college. The group visited a very poor community in the border town of Reynosa, Mexico. During that trip he traveled to a nearby dump and saw the people who lived there scavenging from what others had discarded. Visible in the distance was a huge mansion separating the dump by a large wall. After finishing school, he and his wife, Nicole, decided to sponsor several young boys exactly the same age as their own boys. They enjoyed the opportunity to correspond with the children and see the children develop over time~– all the while they knew they were able to play some small part in making their lives better. Ben’s family has expanded their child sponsorship and has now been sponsoring children in Ethiopia for several years. Ben is a patent attorney and a partner in the law firm of Merchant & Gould in Minnesota. In his spare time, and as an avid triathlete, he can often be found swimming, biking, or running. He also enjoys practicing taekwondo with his family, as well as spending time fishing and bow hunting.
Erin Hobson – Board Member and Treasurer
Erin is a longtime donor to Partners With Ethiopia. She lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota with her husband and two young children. Erin had the privilege of traveling to Ethiopia in March 2019 to see firsthand the projects we support. After that trip she joined our board of directors as treasurer. Erin started her career in public accounting and has been working for Abbott (formerly St. Jude Medical) for the past ten years doing international compliance and finance audits. She brings great passion and expertise to Partners With Ethiopia.
Nicole Sheldon – Board Member
Nicole lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota with her husband. Nicole’s support of Partners With Ethiopia started in 2011 as a donor, and she has served as a spiritual advisor to our executive director. She brings a wealth of knowledge gained over two decades of ministry experience. She spent several years working with youth, both in church and parachurch organizations. She served as the Upper Midwest director for Operation Christmas Child for ten years, and currently works on the development team at Minnehaha Academy in Minneapolis.
Dick Augustine – Board Member
Dick lives in Plymouth, Minnesota with his wife Mary Lou, where three children and six grandchildren are the joys of their lives. In his spare time Dick is an avid skier, runner, sailor, and wilderness camper. He brings to our board a wide range of international experience which includes court reporting on international cases, leading his church for ten years as board chair in global outreach, and since 2015, working as ambassador to Ethiopia for Community Bible Study International. Dick’s involvement has included leading multiple teams to Mongolia and Ethiopia to partner and serve local organizations working with street kids, vulnerable women, and impoverished communities. He has firsthand experience with our projects from multiple visits with our NGO partner, SHAPEthiopia, in Hawassa and Boricha.
Getachew Teklu – Ethiopian Advisor
Getachew Teklu has lived in Minnesota since 1986. He was born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Getachew has been a longtime donor and volunteer cultural advisor to Partners With Ethiopia. He has an international business degree from the University of St. Thomas. He owns and operates Admas Travel, and is an international business and risk assessment consultant. His care, concern, and guidance of our involvement in Ethiopia has aided in our growth and development as a non-profit.
Amy Hett – Administration Assistant
Amy lives in Lakeville, MN with her husband and their three children. Amy and her family have been dedicated supporters of Partners With Ethiopia since 2011 and have sponsored the same child since 2012. Amy has volunteered many hours to help with PWE’s administrative needs. In April 2018 Amy stepped into a paid administrative role to help with PWE’s growing efforts. Her enthusiasm, encouragement, and attention to detail has impacted many lives in Ethiopia. She also works part-time as an administrative assistant at her church. In her spare time Amy enjoys working on house projects, spending time with her kids, and bargain hunting.
Jennifer Peters – H.O.P.E. Advocate
Jennifer lives in Prior Lake, MN with her husband and four children. She has spent years as a “cheerleader” for PWE’s efforts in southern Ethiopia. Along with personal giving, her family has encouraged our leadership, strongly advocated on social media, done fundraisers, and has been sponsoring a precious child at the Dale H.O.P.E. Center since 2014. In 2012 Jennifer and her husband adopted their youngest son from China. Their heart for orphaned and vulnerable children runs deep. Along with homeschooling her kids, Jennifer loves nature. She has an avid interest in monarch butterflies which includes fostering a yard in which the monarchs can rest on their journey south each year.
Abby Gordon – Bookkeeper
Abby lives in Northern New York and works as a bookkeeper for an oil company. Abby sponsors a little boy through Partners With Ethiopia, and loves how personal the relationship feels; more so than other sponsorship organizations she has dealt with. She hopes to someday visit him in Ethiopia. Abby enjoys music, crafts, and travel. She is very active in her church and is one of the music leaders.
Is This a Christian Organization?
Partners With Ethiopia and our Ethiopian partner organizations are faith-based initiatives, following the example and directive of Jesus to “care for the least of these,”“love orphans and widows in their distress,” and to see God’s “Kingdom come on earth as it is in Heaven.”
As we focus on serving and building lasting relationships, we use that as a platform to share God’s love and His desire for us to know and be known by Him. However, we realize that faith is a personal choice that each individual must make for themselves.
Regardless of their faith, we serve all children and do not require any child to adhere to the Christian faith in order to receive our services. In the same way, we encourage you to join us (regardless of your faith) in the life-giving journey of loving and helping to care for others.
Join us in the journey of caring for others; donate monthly to our H.O.P.E. Child Fund: hopeinfo.give2pwe.org.