About Us

Person2Person International is a fiscally sponsored project of Community Shares of Mid Ohio/In(form)ed, a registered Ohio nonprofit corporation and recognized as tax-exempt under IRS Code 501(c)(3). EIN 31-1363943

Katherine Metres Akbar

Founder and Chairperson

Inspired by the desire to share with her fellow Americans her passion for solidarity among peoples, Katherine Metres Akbar founded Person2Person in August 2019. She learned to care for those in crisis from the age of three, when her parents “adopted” a Vietnamese refugee family. Likewise, she and her Iranian-American husband took care of a Salvadoran family seeking asylum in 2018.

Professionally, Katherine is the founder and president of YES Career Coaching & Resume Writing Services. She traveled to Iran and fell in love with it in 2016. During the Al-Quds intifada, from 2003–2005, she lived under occupation in Palestine, where she did human rights and humanitarian work.

Previously, Katherine served as executive director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee/New York, where she spoke out against racial profiling.She also served as a U.S. diplomat in Mauritania and Italy. She is still remembered in  Mauritania for making U.S. visa policies easier to understand, promoting trade, and being friends with so many locals. She has 15 publications to her name on Palestinian, Argentine, Bosnian, and Iraqi human rights issues. 

Katherine holds a BA in political science with high honors from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor and a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University. She is fluent in Spanish, French, Italian, and Arabic, and is slowly learning Farsi.

Tracy Masterson

Member of the Board of Directors

Tracy Masterson is a tenured associate professor of psychology at John Carroll University (JCU), as well as a licensed clinical psychologist specialized in pediatric psychology. Tracy has received specialized training in working with individuals with developmental disabilities and autism. She received her degree in clinical psychology from Kent State University and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in pediatric behavioral health at the Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital. 

Tracy has received several awards for her community service, in addition to receiving the Lucrezia Culicchia Award for Teaching Excellence. She serves on the boards of directors of both Building Behaviors Autism Center and Milestones Autism Resources and has co-chaired the Milestones Conference for the past six years.   As a psychology professor and clinical psychologist, Tracy appreciates the role of cross-cultural connection and understanding. Since 2009, she has facilitated a cross-cultural exchange program in her Adolescent Development course at JCU. 

In this course, she provides her students with opportunities to directly observe similarities and differences in development through a unique   cultural lens. Over the years, Dr. Masterson has facilitated cultural exchanges between her university students in the United States with   students living in Saudi Arabia, Cambodia, Guyana, Italy, and Iraq. 

Leaha Viscounte

Leaha Viscounte is one of P2P’s interns for the summer of 2022. She is a junior at John Carroll University, where she majors in political science (concentration in global studies) and peace, justice, & human rights along with a minor in English (concentration in literature). Leaha’s ultimate passion lies in prison reform, which requires a certain amount of the empathy that is fundamental to P2P’s missions. Classes at John Carroll such as Health Care Access in Latin America and Freedom, Religion, & Law have helped her develop a deeper understanding of the inequity in the world today. Unfortunately, the injustices prisoners face are only part of the larger problem: human rights are being violated worldwide. This is seen as Israeli soldiers murder and displace innocent Palestinians from the land that was once their haven and home. This is also seen in the ignorance and insensitivity of developed countries, which results in climate change in places that do not have the resources or capital to combat it, like El Salvador. Voices at P2P are passionate about fairness, truth, and justice. Leaha hopes to contribute to this organization in order to advance the cause of human rights.