Advisory Board Members

Our senior board members are respected community leaders who advise the center as needed. They don’t officially vote or are required to attend meetings, but they are available to render advice to the center.

Gordon halm

Founder and Executive Director

Gordon is the Founder and Executive Director of the African Community Center of Lowell. He holds a Master’s degree in Peace and Conflict Studies from UMass Lowell and now serves as a board member for the UMass Lowell Greeley Scholar for Peace and Conflict Studies. He previously worked at the International Institute of New England Lowell branch helping with refugee resettlement as a youth case specialist and community cultural orientation instructor.  Gordon also has experience working with children with developmental disabilities. He volunteers his time as a fence viewer for the town of Dracut helping to resolve disputes around boundaries and occasionally mediates at Lowell District Court. He is on the Board of Trustees for Innovation Academy Charter School and is also the founder of the African Festival in Lowell, a free annual festival that attracts thousands of community members and partners to showcase diversity and inclusion. He recently was chosen as the recipient for the Cultural Heritage Excellence award by the Lowell National Historical Park, and has also been elected as the Co-Chair of UMass Lowell Greeley Scholar Committee. In May 2019, he was among the IINE 100 honorees which he received an award. Gordon would like to thank his mentor Afua AddaeAdoo from the UMASS Lowell Career Center, Jim Wilde of the Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership, Steve Joncas of Joncas Associates, and Darcie Coleman, LICSW. He would also like to give a special thanks to his wife Beatrice Stevens and his three sons Isaac, Raysam and Tyler. This would not have been possible without their support.

Awards received by Gordon Halm


Community Teamwork Inc, Local Heroes Award, Oct 26, 2006

For distinguished service to the Greater Lowell Community. 

The Lowell Sun’s 25 Most Fascinating People of 2008

African Cultural Association, for outstanding efforts in creating the African Festival and bringing awareness to the rich African culture and promoting cultural understanding among all people of Lowell.

UMass Lowell, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Distinguished Service Award, Jan 30, 2018

National Park Services Excellence in Cultural Heritage, May 3, 2018

paula rayman

Advisory Board Member

At this moment of history we need more than ever to celebrate diversity in our communities . As we launch this new Center we are saying "Yes We Can" in creating movement towards equality and respect and dignity for all.

phala chea

Advisory Board Member

I am honored to serve as a senior advisory board member of the African Community Center of Lowell.

As a former refugee, I understand the many difficulties and challenges of starting a new life in a new country, where language, customs, culture, rules, laws and expectations are so different. I am proud of Gordon Halm's leadership and appreciative of his work with the community to establish this very important Center. New immigrants and refugees will need the Center to connect and orient themselves to Lowell. In my capacity as a senior advisor, I will support and champion the Center's mission and services to promote the quality of life and citizenship of immigrants and refugees. I look forward to celebrating the Center's many accomplishments.

Rose agbede

Advisory Board Member

The African Community Center of Lowell is our Village in Lowell. Remember the saying? " It takes a Village to a raise a Child." Our village is Lowell.

George Joseph

Advisory Board Member

George Joseph is an Associate Professor of Accounting at the Manning School of Business, University of Massachusetts Lowell. He has a PhD in Accounting from Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and is a Chartered Accountant from India.

Cecilia Idika-Kalu

Advisory Board Member

Cecilia has been a guest speaker at the ACCL events, including our Anniversary Gala and Kofi Annan memorial. She is also a volunteer teacher on leadership for the Center’s Summer School Programs. She is a mom of three, a PhD Candidate and Adjunct Professor in the Political Science Department of the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Her research is at the intersection of Security, Human Rights, and Gender. She is a Boston Civic Action Project Policy Fellow and has years of experience in International development and Management consulting. Cecilia is a Society for Human Resource Management Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) and a TEDx speaker who loves to read and travel.

PO box 8708

Lowell, MA 01853

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