A Opção

PROMOTING FINANCIAL DEVELOPMENT IN BRAZIL'S FAVELA COMMUNITIES

Our People


  Chaim Philip Theil, Esq.
   Founder
   (U.S.)


Drawing on his business and corporate legal experience, Chaim has traveled extensively to Brazil in an effort to promote A
Opção's mission, and, along with other A Opção volunteers, has been advising small business owners and vendors in various of Rio's Favelas on the creation and maintenance of successful businesses.  After receiving a bachelors of science degree in Finance from Yeshiva University, Chaim continued as owner of an entertainment start-up company which he had started as a sophomore in college.  He attended New York University School of Law (NYU), from where he received his J.D., with a focus on law and business.  Chaim speaks English, Hebrew, and Brazilian Portuguese. He is currently a corporate attorney at the law firm of Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP in New York City, USA.

 
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 Eli Portnoy
 (U.S.

As an advisory member of A Opção, Mr. Portnoy draws on his experience building sustainable organizations that empower local communities.  His company, Emerging Demographics, has helped over 30,000 low-wage and Hispanic workers by providing a bi-lingual telephone platform for finding employment opportunities. His professional experience includes work at Deloitte Consulting as a strategy and operations business analyst.  Mr. Portnoy graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in International Relations and Political Science and is a graduate of Harvard Business School. He is fluent in English and Spanish.

 

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 Monica Wajnsztajn
 (Brazil)

A Resident of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monica has an extensive background in technology, finance, and mining.  She received her Bachelors in Business Administration from Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, and her post-graduate degree in Project Management from Instituto Brasileiro de Mercado de Capitais (IBMEC).  Monica has previously advised the communities of various Favelas including those of the Pavao-Pavaozinho Favela on various business and educational matters. Monica speaks English, Spanish, and Brazilian Portuguese.  She received her M.B.A. from IBMEC and currently works as a commercial manager/ECLP at General Electric, Brazil.


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 Moyses Lachter
 (Brazil)

Mr. Lachter, an advisory member of A Opção, brings his 30 years of experience at IBM having held positions as a Systems Engineer, Marketing Associate and Industry Project manager, becoming, in 1985, the Large Account Manager for the state owned oil company, Petrobras. After retiring from IBM in 1995, he worked as the Brazilian Country Manager for Landmark and Core Laboratories.  Currently Mr. Lachter is a private consultant and the ATI Country Manager for Brazil, headquartered in Rio de Janeiro.

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  Vinicius (Vini) Josè Ferreira Campos
  (Brazil)

Vinicius' experience in non-profit volunteer work stems from his involvement in the Children's International Summer Village, an NGO committed to cross-culture understanding in youth around the world.  Vinicius received his MBA from LATEC - Federal University Fluminense in Brazil with a focus on Economic and Financial Engineering.  He has served as Senior Analyst of Investor Relations at Suzano Pulp and Paper, one of the largest pulp and paper companies in the world and is now a consultant for the Klabin Company.  Vinicius speaks English, Spanish, and Brazilian Portuguese.

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    Professor Paul Sneed
    (U.S./Brazil)

Professor Paul Sneed, Ph.D., a member of A Opção's advisory board, is an Assistant Professor of Brazilian Literary and Cultural Studies at the University of Kansas and is a Co-Founder of the Two Brothers Foundation/Instituto Dois Irmãos (http://www.2bros.org/), which provides educational opportunities in Favelas in Brazil, through local and international community service and cultural exchange.  At the University of Kansas, Professor Sneed teaches Brazilian Literary and Cultural Studies at the graduate and undergraduate level, as well as a variety of Portuguese language classes.  He is currently working on a book manuscript on spaces of everyday power in Favelas and their relationships to the climate of violence and social exclusion around them. He has published articles in the Latin American Research Review, Hispania, the Latin American Music Review, and World Literature Today.  Professor Sneed received his BA in Political and Social Thought from the University of Virginia and his MA and PhD in Portuguese from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. 

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   Andrew Lebwohl, Esq.
   (U.S.)

A graduate of Columbia University and Columbia Law School, Andrew was an associate in the Business Solutions and Governance group at the law firm of Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP.  At Dewey, Andy provided pro bono small business consulting on a variety of issues, including technology licensing, business restructuring and commercial leasing.  In his legal practice, Andrew focused on restructuring and providing planning services to distressed companies.  Andy currently attends the Yale School of Management.

 

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    Emanuel Zareh
    (U.S.)

 As an advisory member of A Opção, Manny offers his expertise in capital management as a coach and mentor on a pro bono basis.  Manny's experience ranges from being an international policy assistant for the National Economic Council at the White House to stints at Morgan Stanley and the National Football League as a financial analyst.  He has also been instrumental in creating fundraising efforts for A Opção.  Manny is a graduate of Colgate University where he majored in International Relations and received his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.   

 

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    Rafael Teruszkin
    (Brazil)

A graduate of COPPE/UFRJ with a masters degree in Telecommunication Engineering, Rafael is the IT Coordinator at Sicpa Product Security, a Switzerland-based software development company.  Rafael brings his strong background in project management to A Opção and has graduated from the Compass Business School as part of its Project Management Professional Preparation Program.   Rafael is fluent in 5 languages including Portuguese, French and Spanish and has worked in Switzerland, Venezuela and Turkey.  He currently resides in Rio de Janeiro.