Executive Director & Co-Founder
In 1999, Dana Bates and his wife Brandi started the first adventure education camp in Romania: VIAȚA. In 2000, together with their Romanian team, they started New Horizons Foundation, launching an experiential education model that would eventually become the IMPACT program.
Currently, Dana is the Executive Director of New Horizons Foundation. He is also an adjunct professor at Northwestern College (Iowa, USA) and academic director of the Romania Semester. He graduated in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts. After earning his bachelor’s degree he went on to earn a Master of Divinity degree at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and a doctorate from Middlesex University in London with his thesis entitled, “The Glory of God is Humanity Fully Alive: Eastern Orthodoxy in Conversation with the Capabilities Approach”.
Brandi Bates studied English Language & Literature at Gordon College (Massachusetts, USA), and was awarded the college’s most prestigious scholarship. In addition to her other work, Brandi, together with Dana, introduced Romania to the concept of adventure education through the VIAȚA program and the establishment of New Horizons Foundation.
Before the birth of their two children, Brandi was the administrative director of New Horizons Foundation and the director of the VIAȚA program. Now, she continues to serve NHF through fundraising and communications while working from home. She divides her time between homemaking, advocating for breastfeeding, and recently, a nation-wide reading campaign called Reading Together Romania (Citim Împreună România).
In 2007, Anca began working on educational curriculum for the IMPACT program, and in 2013 she joined the New Horizons team as a fundraiser and project manager for the Debit Direct campaign. She took on the role of operational director in 2015. She likes challenges and believes in the power of non-formal education, complementary to formal education, to change people and communities.
Anca worked for 20 years in the NGO sector as a program developer and organizational and entrepreneurial consultant, focused predominantly on rural areas. She is thankful for her rich experiences and for the wonderful people she works with every day. She is glad to be able to contribute to a program that is changing conceptions of education in Romania.