Ms. Thinley Choden, Country Director
Thinley established the READ Bhutan office, building it out from a one-person office in 2008 to a fully staffed team. To do so, Thinley visited with a number of rural communities throughout Bhutan to share the READ model and develop new partnerships, and to strategize about designing relevant need-based programs and activities. Under Thinley’s leadership, READ Bhutan has established the first community libraries in the entire country, and expanded programming. Previously, Thinley served as a program officer for the United Nations World Food Program in Bhutan and New York, a consultant for several US based non-profit and for-profit organizations including the Bhutan Foundation, and a research assistant for the American Enterprise Institute. She holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Beloit College in Wisconsin, a post-graduate certificate in Asia Pacific Leadership Program from the East-West Center and a master’s degree in public administration from University of Hawaii at Manoa as an East-West Center degree fellow. Thinley has lived in several different countries and loves traveling. She is very good at inter-cultural communication and can work easily in multi-cultural settings. She speaks four languages.
Ms. Kezang Choden, Program Officer
Kezang joined READ Bhutan in July 2010. She was stationed in Ura for four months to work with the Ura READ Center and its community to strengthen programs and activities. She oversees activities for other upcoming READ Centers across Bhutan. Before READ, Kezang worked for Kuzoo FM, a youth radio station as the program coordinator. She graduated from North Bengal University in India with honors in literature in 2006. She also has a post-graduate diploma in radio journalism from Asian College of Journalism in Chennai, India.
Mr. Ngawang Phuntsho, Development Officer
Prior to joining READ Bhutan as Development Officer in 2012, Ngawang Phuntsho worked at the Head Office of the Bank of Bhutan (in Phuentsholing) as the PR & Media Officer. He blogs regularly on social issues and frequently contributes columns to the local newspapers. He has a Bachelors Degree in English Literature from Sherubste College, Kanglung, via Delhi University.
Mr. Ganesh Chettri, Field Coordinator
Ganesh joined READ Bhutan in January 2011. He is stationed in Gasa and works with the community and grassroots leaders to plan, coordinate and establish the new Gasa READ Center. Before joining READ, Ganesh worked for Civil Society Organization Fund Facility. He also completed internships at Bank of Bhutan, Goeneful Options Consultancy and Ministry of Labor and Human Resources. He graduated in 2009 with a bachelor's in business management from Garden City College in Bangalore, India.
Ms. Rinchen Choden, Field Coordinator
Rinchen joined the READ Bhutan team in August of 2012 as a Field Coordinator with a special focus on Sustaining Enterprises and Livelihood Programs. Rinchen received her BS in Human Ecology with a focus on Social Technology (development studies) from the University of Philippines Los Banos. During her four year stay in the Philippines she worked with several grassroots organizations on community development and livelihood programs. She did on-the-job training with Aboitiz Power Renewables Inc. under their CSR department in the Philippines. She also did a three month internship with the UNDP Environment unit in Bhutan.
Mr. Dorji Wangchuk, Field Coordinator
Dorji joined the READ Bhutan office team in 2014, after a year and a half of serving as a Community Coordinator at the Changjiji Community Library and Resource Center (READ Model Center in Thimphu). He graduated from Royal Thimphu College with a BA in English and Environmental Studies in 2012. Previously, Dorji interned with the Bhutan Broadcasting Service.
Ms. Tashi Pem, Administration and Finance Assistant
Tashi joined READ Bhutan in July 2010. She has a bachelor's degree in commerce from Bangalore University in India. Before joining READ, she interned at Bhutan National Bank.
Ms. Ugen Choden, Program Director, the Bhutan Foundation
Ugen Choden is Program Director of the Bhutan Foundation, based in Thimphu, Bhutan. Prior to joining the Bhutan Foundation she worked as a national consultant for over ten years for various national and international organizations including the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and other UN agencies, as well as the Royal Government of Bhutan, specializing in social issues such as primary education, HIV/AIDS, and gender studies. Her research work in rural communities in remote parts of Bhutan has lead to much insight at micro and macro levels. She attended the University of Delhi, Sherubtse College in Bhutan and briefly the University of Arkansas in Little Rock.
Mr. Passang Dorji, Director of Investments, Druk Holding and Investments (DHI)
Mr. Passang Dorji has over 12 years of experience in the corporate sector in Bhutan and currently serves as the Director for Investments, projects and private sector development at DHI. Prior to DHI, he has worked in Bhutan Power Corporation as the Company secretary. He also serves as a Board Director in Bhutan Telecom. Mr. Dorji received his Bachelor in Civil Engineering from Thailand and MBA from the Asian Institute of Management, Philippines.
Mr. Thinley Palden, CEO, RSAP Pvt. Ltd.
Mr. Palden is the CEO of RSA Pvt. Ltd., a mining and minerals company. Mr. Palden also serves as the Vice President of the Bhutan Chamber for Commerce and Industry. Previously, he worked for Bhutan National Bank for 8 years. Mr. Palden received his bachelor's in business administration from Germany.
Mr. Sangay Penjor Senior Program Coordinator, Royal Government of Bhutan
Mr. Penjor is the Senior Program Coordinator, Development Cooperation Division at the Gross National Happiness Commission of the Royal Government of Bhutan. He is a committee member of the Capacity Development for Environment Mainstreaming in National Plans and Programs. Mr. Penjor received a bachelor's degree in Economics from St. Anthony's College, India, and a master's degree in Political Science from Meiji University, Japan.
Mr. Tshewang Tandin, Director General, Department of Adult and Higher Education
Tshewang Tandin is the Director General of Department of Adult and Higher Education at the Ministry of Education in Thimphu. He previously worked as Director of the Department of School Education at the Ministry of Education. Mr. Tandin received a bachelor's degree in Zoology from St. Anthony's College, India, a master's degree in Zoology at St. John's College, India, and a master's of Education (Administration) from the University of New England, Australia.