Promoting a global culture of solidarity with the poor - in Haiti, Africa, and beyond. - for a more just and sustainable world . . .
Vera Swiergol, Board Treasurer, visited Haiti in 1992 as a participant in the first Rich in Mercy “reverse mission pilgrimage” with Rich and Daneen Gosser. She has visited there periodically since that first trip, most recently in December 2014 after joining the board of the Rich in Mercy Institute. She is a professional bookkeeper and member of St. Margaret Mary RC Church (Lower Burrell, PA). In 1994 she began a fund to support education in Haiti that has provided more than $100,000 in scholarships to children and youth based on merit and need.
Daneen Gosser, Board Vice President / Secretary, is a retired RN with more than 30 years of experience as a certified psychiatric nurse providing patient care and therapy in both institutional and home health settings. She and her husband Rich first visited Haiti in 1987 after being inspired by a book in which the author encouraged readers to encounter Jesus not in the Holy Land where he walked more than 2000 years ago, but in the slums of Port au Prince where – he promised – Jesus could be found among people living in extreme material poverty.
She and her husband Rich are Lay Spiritan Associates – lay members of the Congregation of the Holy Spirit and “co-workers” with Presentation Ministries, a lay association of the faithful based in Cincinnati, OH. They have been leading “reverse mission pilgrimages” to Haiti since 1992. Daneen is a mother of two children. She and Rich are grandparents of four boys and one girl.
They are members of Holy Trinity RC Church (Ligonier, PA) where they sing in the memorial choir, and hospice choir and are RCIA catechists.
Dr. Richard A. Gosser, Executive Director and Board President, has nearly 30 years of experience working in Haiti. Rich holds an earned doctorate in mathematics from Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh, PA) and honorary doctorates from St. Vincent College (Latrobe, PA) and Marywood University (Scranton, PA). He is professor emeritus at St. Vincent College where he taught mathematics and engineering from 1975 until 2005. Currently he teaches a “service learning” course titled “Haiti: Window on Our Worlds” as an adjunct professor of history at St. Vincent. He is fluent in Haitian Kreyol and has been an accredited election observer in seven Haitian national elections between 1990 and 2000.
Rich established and spent 13 years as executive director of Partners in Progress (PIP), a nonprofit dedicated to promoting and supporting sustainable community development in rural Haiti