In Profile! MaryAnn Malvig
World Hope International is staffed and led by an incredible team of passionate professionals around the world. Join us in welcoming MaryAnn Malvig to the World Hope International (WHI) Team! MaryAnn is our newest Director of Strategic Engagement, reaching the West Coast of the U.S. and beyond.
Although she was born in the Philippines, MaryAnn grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, U.S.A. There she lived in a neighborhood that was predominantly Jewish and Catholic. She explained that this helped to shape her understanding of other cultures and religions, expanding her worldview even at a young age.
MaryAnn lived with her parents in Chicago until she went to Oral Robert’s University, a Christian university in Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.A. During her time in undergrad MaryAnn became friends with people from all over the world as her school was then made up of about 70 percent international students. Inspired by the cultures of her international friends and her love for adventure, MaryAnn traveled all over the world after graduating from Oral Robert’s University.
MaryAnn absolutely loves to travel and has been to every continent in the world, the exception being Antarctic, which she hopes to visit as soon as it is safe to travel again! She loves adventure sports and is always down for joining friends who are attempting items on their bucket-lists. She has even swum the two miles to Alcatraz, off the coast of San Francisco, all to help a friend check it off their bucket-list. So, if you are looking for an adventure buddy, look no further, MaryAnn is ready to cheer you on and join in on the adventure!
MaryAnn’s extended family, including her grandparents, live in the Philippines, which she shares is a driving factor in her passion for her work. Seeing first-hand, in her own family, what it can be like to live in a developing region, MaryAnn translates that into a passion for serving those around the world living in similar circumstances. She strives to make a difference in communities around her as well as abroad by serving locally with refugees in her free time and working globally with WHI. This balance is something that MaryAnn feels is very important to maintain, especially when your professional job is internationally focused.
“Being involved in your community and then giving internationally is so, so important.”
MaryAnn has over fifteen years of experience in both global non-profit fundraising and medical sales. This range of experience combined with her passion for community health, woman’s empowerment, serving the vulnerable, and peacemaking is what makes MaryAnn such a valuable asset to the WHI team. MaryAnn shares that the projects WHI are involved in are areas that she is particularly passionate about, such as WHI’s work to end Online Sexual Exploitation of Children (OSEC). This has made her transition into WHI relatively smooth as she finds that the work she is doing matches her passions and who she is as a person. “The work embodies who I am,” she shared, adding that she thinks it’s also the “best industry to be in.”
“Peacemaking is messy, but active peacemaking is listening”
MaryAnn has a particular place in her heart for peacemaking across cultures and peoples. The way forward, in her experience, is to actively listen to those around you because you can’t really know someone until you give them the opportunity to tell you about themselves. However, MaryAnn does not just want people to listen passively, she stresses that you must listen in an active way, where you really take in what the other person is saying without interjecting your own thoughts and experiences. She believes that once we can listen in this way, we will be able to help each other in the ways we each need most, ultimately leading to healing and peace between neighbors and enemies.
An experience that greatly shaped MaryAnn’s understanding of listening was when she went on a peace-building trip to Israel and Palestine. There she was able to sit and listen to women from both sides share their stories and experiences. This changed her perspective as both sides had similar stories of pain, fear, grief, and hope, and yet they are so divided. MaryAnn hopes that people all around the world will be able to pause their own thoughts and actively listen to their neighbors – eventually leading to peace.
MaryAnn’s passion and energy for life is contagious, and if you ever get to talk with her, you will most likely walk away feeling a renewed sense of passion for your work, whatever it may be, as she inspires a feeling that you have the abilities within you to conquer great things. With all that said, we are so excited to have her as a part of our team.
Read MaryAnn’s professional bio and check out other members of World Hope’s team!
You can also learn more about World Hope’s work to end OSEC through the PAVE project and make a gift to The Hope Fund to support life-changing work like it.
To contact MaryAnn, email us today!