Board of Directors

Chair of the Board
Prof. Afksendiyos Kalangos
Tel: +41 22 372 76 25

Prof. Afksendiyos Kalangos is head of Department of Cardiovascular Surgery at University Hospital of Geneva.

As one of the first supporters of the GHN initiative, Professor Kalangos acts as an advisor to all levels of the project. His extensive experience in humanitarian medicine through « Hearts for All » has also given Professor Kalangos in depth incite into the issues in humanitarian medicine and have been key to the structure of the Platform.

Dr Afksendiyos Kalangos of Greek origin, was born in Istanbul in 1960. He graduated from a French college in 1978 and from medical school in 1984. After a long period of training in cardiovascular surgery in London, USA and Paris, he was nominated professor of cardiovascular surgery at the University of Istanbul in 1995 and then became staff surgeon at the University Hospital of Geneva in 1998. Finally, he was appointed chairman of the department of cardiovascular surgery in 2001 and director of the cardiovascular centre in 2011.

Thanks to ‘Hearts for All’, over 10,000 poor children suffering from congenital or acquired heart diseases have been treated over the last 6 years, especially in their own countries. The approach to humanitarian medicine is changing. Dr Kalangos moves away from the old concept of bringing and treating these children in developed countries, towards a new concept of providing specific medical care to these children in their own countries.

Consequently, many heart institutes have been created or restored in Eritrea, Georgia, Lebanon, Mauritius, Mozambique, Morocco, Algeria, and soon these facilities will be extended to new demanding countries such as Cameroun and Vietnam. Young doctors and nurses are also trained in these local centers during cardio logical or surgical missions carried out by teams affiliated to his association.

Dr Kalangos says that this policy will continue until these reference centers are fully autonomous and able to coordinate the same medical activities in their neighboring countries. Moreover, a telemedicine program is underway between the Department of Dr Kalongs in Geneva and these institutes for the benefit of the same geographic areas in order to reinforce the self-perpetuating process of training people locally.

Dr Kalangos strongly believes that the future of humanitarian medicine resides within native countries where a new generation of enthusiastic and motivated practitioners awaits the challenge of treating their children themselves.

Co-Founder, Executive Director
Annabel Lavielle, MNA
Tel: + 1 (415) 832 0653

Annabel’s work career has spanned both the private sector and non-profit. Her most notable for profit experience was with a service company she founded in Paris called Corporate Relocations that provides services to Human Resources departments for their expatriates. After the company’s rapid growth, it was sold to Prudential in 2001. Shortly after, Annabel gained a Masters in Humanitarian Action at the Paris XII. This interest led her to work with NGOs in France including a nonprofit advocating child’s rights; and then a disaster relief NGO, “Premiere Urgence”.

In 2010 Annabel graduated with a Masters in nonprofit administration from the University of San Francisco. Leading from her studies she established the Global Heart Network in an effort to assist other individuals and families also affected by Heart Disease, in countries with less access to quality care. Annabel is passionate about building partnerships in cross-sector collaboration. She is also the mother of a CHD survivor and has worked with several nonprofits working in this field.

Vice President
Dr Hakim Yadi, PhD
Tel: +44 7765 408363

Hakim is the CEO of the newly formed Northern Health Science Alliance (NHSA) the NHSA was established to develop and integrate the biomedical research capabilities of leading NHS Trusts and UK Universities across the North of England.

Hakim has a background in both academia and management consultancy. Hakim previously held the position of Principal at PA Consulting and has worked in the life sciences, healthcare and technology sectors for eight years. Hakim has worked with universities, health care providers and industry to establish translational medicine collaborations and partnerships that sought to maximise the value and utility of biomedical research.

 Hakim is also advises the UK Government through the UKTI Life Science Investment Organisation.

Academically, Hakim holds a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from the University of Cambridge, which he conducted at the BBSRC Babraham Research Institute.

Marco BuhlmannTreasurer and Product Director
Marco Buhlman, MBA
Tel: +49 170 2123231

Marco is an entrepreneur and business developer specialized in high growth, technology driven companies.

He advises the development of Global Heart Network’s online platform strategy and the prioritization of its technology. Marco’s passion for entrepreneurship led him to co-found multiple technology startup companies in the United States and Europe. While working hard to revolutionize the real-time web with a one-of-a-kind context search engine as the CEO of, Marco successfully launched 3cubed — a San Francisco & Berlin based business development company with the mission to invest in technology-driven products and help entrepreneurs build differentiated technology startups that dramatically change markets. Marco enjoys working at the intersection of philanthropy and technology, where innovation happens at a very fast pace. Global Heart Network is the right place to do that.