EARTH Futures

Transforming Rural Areas

EARTH Futures is the global solutions center of EARTH University. We partner with academic institutions, rural communities, and other like-minded partners worldwide to transform rural areas. We structure our efforts around two primary pillars – Education for Leadership and Developing Solutions – focusing on Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean.

Our Team

Javier Artiñano Guzmán

Javier has served as the Director of the Developing Solutions Program at EARTH Futures since July of 2021. Previously, he served as the Coordinator of the Precision Agriculture Center at EARTH University. Before joining EARTH, Javier worked for six years as a Project Manager at the Costa Rican Coffee Institute (ICAFE) and with the National Groundwater, Irrigation, and Drainage Service (SENARA). Javier graduated from EARTH University as an Agricultural Engineer and holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration specializing in Project Management.
Naboth Bwambale
Naboth has served as the Mastercard Foundation – EARTH University Fellowship Program Director for the EARTH Futures’ Education for Leadership Program since January of 2020. He is primarily responsible for managing the Fellowship Program’s activities between partner institutions on the African continent and EARTH University. Previously, Naboth worked as the Regional Agriculture and Nutrition Officer for USAID’s Community Connector Project in Uganda. Naboth holds a Master’s and a Ph.D. degree in Rural Sociology and Sustainable Agriculture (dual degree) from Iowa State University, specializing in adopting integrated soil fertility management practices.
Arturo Condo
Arturo Condo is the President of EARTH University. During his tenure, Dr. Condo led the creation of EARTH Futures and has also guided the launch of EARTH Ventures, an initiative to launch new businesses with purpose that also contribute to the long-term sustainability of the University. He served as President of INCAE Business School between 2007 and 2015 where for two decades he was Dean of the MBA, Dean of Innovation and Development, Director of the Latin American Center for Competitiveness and Sustainable Development (CLACDS) and professor in strategy, competitiveness and sustainable development. He has a Doctorate in business strategy and competitiveness from Harvard Business School and was recognized as a “Distinguished Scholar” in his MBA at INCAE. In 2007, the World Economic Forum recognized him as a Young Global Leader (YGL).
Emily Kaiser
Emily is Strategic Advisor to EARTH’s President and led the launch of EARTH Futures from 2018 to 2021. She is a senior executive of partnerships, philanthropy, and sustainable development with over 20 years experience working with foundations and civil society leaders throughout Latin America and the United States. Before joining EARTH, Emily worked for 12 years in leadership and executive roles at Fundación Avina, one of the largest foundations in Latin America. Emily resides in the United States and has spent 15 years living in Latin America, Europe, and Africa.
Ana L. Arreaga Urizar
Ana works as Technical Coordinator of the REAL Project at EARTH Futures in Guatemala. She holds a degree in Agricultural Engineering from EARTH University and is passionate about organic farming, resilient community development, climate change, and sustainability. Ana joined the EARTH Futures team to generate positive change and propose innovative solutions in rural communities. She has consulted on organic farming and sustainability issues in several countries, facilitating workshops and providing expertise on field practices in climate change adaptation and agroecology for global education-focused organizations such as GIZ (German Cooperation) and Skills for Change.
Esteban Castro Brenes
Esteban is a Project Technician at EARTH Futures. He holds a degree in computer networking from the University of Costa Rica (UCR) and has worked as an administrative assistant in digital marketing, specializing in social media and customer service. Esteban teaches workshops on positive masculinity for the CARE Project, and is passionate about closely supporting farmers as part of the Walmart project. Previously, he worked in EARTH University’s Information Technology department.
Josué Castro Núñez
Josué works as a Project Engineer at EARTH Futures and has a degree in Agricultural Sciences from EARTH University. He is part of the Precision Agriculture Center at EARTH and has experience implementing and utilizing technology in the field to improve decision-making. Josué is working with young people in precision agriculture through a program that provides new skills for future agriculture, motivating them to stay in farming and take on new challenges. He is also involved in a project that supports small and medium-sized farmers by providing them with information, tools, and technologies to work under a more resilient and sustainable production system.
Pablo Chacón Góngora
Pablo serves as Project Coordinator for EARTH Futures in Guatemala. He holds a Master’s degree in Sustainable Agriculture from the Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE) in Costa Rica. Pablo has consulted on social and agricultural projects for small farmers in Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Belize. As a researcher, he has collaborated on soil and nutrient recycling projects in farming systems in Guatemala and Costa Rica. Before joining EARTH, Pablo served as Coordinator of the Sustainable Agriculture Program and Co-Director of the Ecological Station at TREES in Belize.
Celeste Cortéz Ruiz

Celeste works as a Technical Assistant for EARTH Futures Projects. She graduated from the Professional Technical High School of Liberia with a degree in Agroecology. Celeste currently participates in the Walmart Project, providing technical support to farmers from seven Costa Rican organizations in the Northern Region, the Caribbean, and Guanacaste. She also helps train community youth, encouraging new generations to become farmers.

Luis De Paz
Luis serves as Business Advisor for EARTH Futures’ REAL Project in Guatemala. He focuses on strengthening the business performance of participating farmer organizations and promoting an entrepreneurial mindset to foster more solid, versatile, resilient, and sustainable business models. Luis is a native of the Guatemalan Altiplano and has a degree in Agricultural Engineering from EARTH University. He has worked in the private sector in areas of added value, market linkage, and commercial representation in international markets, and in business events in destinations including Asia, North America, and Europe. He also worked in marketing and public relations and developed independent ventures in marketing, agribusiness, and environmental conservation. In addition, he has consulted in agribusiness for companies in Guatemala and Costa Rica and with international cooperation projects.
Javier Fallas Díaz
As Project Manager, Javier leads New Skills for the Agriculture of the Future. He is an Agricultural Engineer with a degree from EARTH University and has a Master’s in Planning and Territorial Management of Water and Environmental Risks from the University of San Carlos in Guatemala, focusing on gender and multiculturalism. Javier has 13 years experience in business, social, and environmental project development, with the ability to work with multiple actors in territorial development and integrated water management processes. He also has spent over nine years training and advising microenterprises in Costa Rica in methodological development for challenges faced by today’s society. Javier has participated in various research projects and serves as advisor on undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate theses.
Benjamin Georges James
Benjamin is a Data Analyst in the Monitoring and Evaluation department at EARTH Futures. Starting as an intern, Benjamin is now helping to develop a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system. He also leads gender workshops with the Nourishing the Future IV project. Benjamin graduated in 2022 from Guilford College in North Carolina with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Analytics. In addition, he has worked on several projects with local governments and organizations focused on community empowerment.
Vilma Julajuj Chipín
Vilma coordinates the markets component at EARTH Futures in Guatemala. She has a degree in environmental engineering and is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Agribusiness Management and Sustainable Markets at the Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE) in Costa Rica. Vilma is Mayan Cakchiquel and started her own Guatemalan food restaurant.
Julius Mbuga
Julius is Partnership Coordinator for the Mastercard Foundation – EARTH University Fellowship Program. He focuses on establishing strategic partnerships with organizations, companies, and institutions in Africa that could potentially host Fellows as they begin and develop their careers in farming and food systems. Previously, Julius served as the EARTH University Admissions Officer for Africa, facilitating the selection and transition of over 200 African high school students to join EARTH, mainly on Mastercard Foundation Scholarships. Originally from Uganda, Julius is a 2005 EARTH graduate. In 2019, he earned a Master’s degree in Environment and Development with an emphasis in Sustainable Food Systems from the UN University for Peace in Costa Rica.
Pamela Metadjer Senesi
Pamela is the Technical Coordinator of the Resilient Agrifood Systems project in the Lake Atitlan region of Guatemala. She has been part of the EARTH Futures team in Guatemala since its inception in 2021. Originally from Panajachel by Lake Atitlan, Pamela graduated from EARTH University as an Agricultural Engineer. Pamela specializes in strategies for more resilient agriculture, focusing on soil health and ecosystem regeneration, and has experience designing methodologies and forging strategic alliances to strengthen projects. She has worked in several regional organizations and participates in various local community groups. During the pandemic, Pamela co-founded Ya’ku Probiotics, a natural beverage business based in Guatemala and Ecuador.
Deivis Ocampo
Deivis is EARTH Futures Operations Manager and has worked with EARTH for over 10 years in administrative and operational management. He has a Bachelor degree in Public Accounting, specializing in taxes.
Alondra Peraza Mesén

Alondra works as an Administrative Assistant at EARTH Futures. She earned an Executive Secretarial degree at the Professional Technical High School of Guácimo, Costa Rica and is pursuing a university degree in administrative sciences, economics, and accounting.

Otto Portillo
Otto is a Field Technician in the Resilient Agrifood Systems project with EARTH Futures in Guatemala, where he supports small farmers in adopting agricultural technologies. Otto is an Agroecology Technician and is studying Environmental Engineering. An ecologist at heart, he has been activing in helping with land and water cleanups. He also has participated in projects for food security, agricultural technologies, and environmental control.
Caleb Prendas
Caleb is a Project Engineer at EARTH Futures with the Walmart Foundation in Costa Rica. He is responsible for leading efforts to strengthen the participating organizations and provide them with market access. He also conducts training sessions for farmers and creates innovative tools and methodologies to enhance their administrative and commercial operations. Previously, Caleb worked on developing strategic and market plans for cooperatives and associations in the Huetar Caribbean region of Costa Rica. He graduated from the University of Costa Rica with a degree in Agricultural and Agribusiness Economics.

Iván Sicajau

Iván is an Agronomist who graduated from the Sololá Agricultural Training School. He is originally from Sololá, Guatemala and speaks the Kaqchikel language, which he considers to be one of his best abilities to connect with farmers in the western region of Guatemala. He is passionate about knowledge transfer to small producers. He designs and provides training focused on strengthening the empirical knowledge of producers through technical knowledge.
Dorian Tacán
Dorian is the RTEP Project Coordinator at EARTH Futures in Guatemala. He holds a degree in Agroforestry Engineering from the University del Valle – Altiplano Campus (UVG) in Guatemala, a Master’s degree in Sustainable Soil and Water Management from the University of San Carlos (USAC) in Guatemala, and a Master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from the European University of the Atlantic (UNEATLANTICO) in Spain. Before joining EARTH Futures, Dorian worked in livestock management for the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food, and other Guatemala institutions.
Paula Tzep
Paula works as an Administrative Assistant and assists as a Field Technician with various EARTH Futures projects in Guatemala. She helps with administrative and operational processes and also with training farmers. Paula is an agronomist and is currently studying agriculture at the Rafael Landívar University in Guatemala.
José Zelada

José is from Guatemala. He has a background in marketing and is passionate about combining marketing tools with the potential of rural organizations dedicated to agricultural and artisanal production. For more than 7 years, he has worked alongside rural communities, especially at Lake Atitlán. During this work he has promoted responsible, sustainable and competitive socioeconomic practices, both from supply and demand. He is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Agribusiness Management at the University of Costa Rica, where he applies innovative and sustainable strategies to promote the growth and resilience of communities from a business perspective.

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