Surgeon and Missionary Dr. Tom Catena becomes Aurora Initiative Chair

American physician and Catholic missionary Tom Catena has joined the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative as Chair.

The appointment was announced during the Aurora Dialogues in Berlin. 

Tom Catena will be responsible for engaging key humanitarian stakeholders, working with global partners and overseeing Aurora’s educational and outreach projects, including the internationally recognised Aurora Prize.

In May 2017, Dr. Catena was named as the Aurora Prize Laureate for his courageous work in the Nuba Mountains.

“We are delighted to welcome the first Chair of the organisation. Dr. Tom Catena truly embodies the spirit of Aurora and will be a driving force in taking our global vision forward by helping empower individuals to embrace our shared humanity and express gratitude to those making an impact. It is gratifying that the 2017 Aurora Prize Laureate is also the first chair of this organization,” the joint statement from the Co-Founders of the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative reads. 

“It is a true honour to chair the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative – I am grateful for the impact of the Aurora Prize on my life and the financial support provided to the Mother of Mercy Hospital that has helped transform the lives of the Nuba people in Sudan. I believe in the simple yet powerful force of humanity in addressing today’s critical humanitarian challenges and will remain committed to elevating the Gratitude in Action philosophy in my new role by supporting Aurora’s work empowering those in desperate need to create their own futures,” Tom Catena said. 

As part of the leadership team changes at Aurora, the Executive Board has also appointed Hayk Demoyan, former Director of the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute, as the Chief Operating Officer of the Initiative.