Amanda has more than 16 years of experience in nonprofit leadership with a broad background in education and the arts, economic development, community building, systems change, environmental action, anti-racism and discrimination, financial literacy, and social services. Prior to her transition into organizational leadership, Amanda spent over a decade working with children and local communities as a music educator and performer. Her background as a violinist took her around the globe working in youth education, international diplomacy, and outreach throughout Central and Latin America, South America, Asia, the South Pacific, and North America. The granddaughter of war refugees, Amanda maintains a global vision for humanitarianism.
Amanda received her master's degree from Columbia University in Fundraising Management (née Nonprofit Management) where she focused on cross-sector collaboration, nonprofit leadership, and 21st Century business development. She holds a BA in Music from Stony Brook University and spent time abroad at The Chinese University of Hong Kong studying international relations, public health and policy. Amanda brings to Hands a passion for creating lasting change in the world by providing access to education and critical resources, building vital partnerships, and delivering evidence-based and community-centered programs.
In addition to her nonprofit work, Amanda is the co-founder of Personal Habitat - a zero-waste, ethical athletic apparel company created to address pedestrian fatalities through the marriage of safety, comfort, and style. She was granted a patent in 2021 for her sustainable knitwear technique innovation. When she is not working, Amanda enjoys being outdoors with her five-year-old son. Her favorite children's book is Jane and the Dragon, which was introduced by her literacy-loving mother.
Board of Directors
Leah Garratt – Chairperson
Asst. Superintendent, Mono, California, County Office of Education (retired)
Returned U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer; Investor and Philanthropy Advisor
MBA Student; Returned U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer
Yah-Hanna Jenkins Leys – Secretary
Senior Program Manager at the MillerKnoll Foundation; Co-founder, Women of Color Give
Anne Joseph, Ph.D.
Director of Strategy & Program Management, Ring Therapeutics
Benjamin Resch, C.P.A. – Treasurer
Partner, Deloitte & Touche LLP (retired)
Viviane Scott, JD
Associate at Gunderson Dettmer, LLP
Executive Director, Hands Across the Sea
Director of Product, Humana
Shermaine Bardouille Learning Support Advisor, Ministry of Education, Dominica
Harriet Linskey Co-founder and Past Executive Director, Hands Across the Sea
Kathy Oberle Founder, Boaters for Books
Tom “T.L.” Linskey
Tom Linskey put his 30 years of writing, editing, and photography experience to power designing and creating foundational print, video, and web materials during his time as Hands Across the Sea's Communications Director. T.L.'s background as a creator and explorer includes a grand expedition in 1986 when he built his own sailboat and sailed it, with Harriet, from California to Mexico, the South Pacific, New Zealand, Australia, and Japan. - a trip that would eventually lead to the founding of Hands Across the Sea. T.L. is noted for his background in the sailing and sailboat racing world; he was a three-time world champion crewman in the Olympic 470 class and a member of the 1984 U.S. Olympic Yachting team.
Harriet utilizes her 13 years growing Hands Across the Sea to support the Executive Director in expanding the reach and effectiveness of the Hands mission. Under Harriet's leadership, Hands Across the Sea grew to serve more than 125,000 children and put half-a-million new books into more than 400 schools and community libraries. Harriet is a trained secondary education teacher with five years of experience teaching English, Journalism, and Art History in New Zealand and Japan. At a rural secondary school in New Zealand, Harriet led the refurbishment of a dismal library and saw firsthand how the addition of new and relevant books can inspire all levels of readers. Her passion and commitment to children and literacy have been felt around the world and is carried on through the work of Hands Across the Sea.