BE THE PEACE-BE THE HOPE
Executive Director, TFAA
Communication & Outreach, BTPBTH
Karine Parker-Lemoyne is a French-American social entrepreneur, community developer, educator, visual artist/curator, and the creator of Be the Peace – Be the Hope which develops programmatic responses to at-risk youth issues including immigrants and refugees. She lives in Houston, Texas and was until 2007 a chief financial comptroller in Paris, France.
She currently runs the Texan-French Alliance for the Arts as its Executive and Program Director.
In 2011, she developed and organized “Go West 1,” a project that was presented at the headquarters of UNESCO in Paris in the framework of “2010: International Year for the Rapprochement of Cultures,” for which UNESCO was the leading agency. The collaborative programs (Open the Door, From a Space to A Place, Be the Peace – Be the Hope) that she creates and runs with the support of prominent Houston and international organizations, use proprietary curricula based on art, leadership, psycho-social development and education. The programs encourage resilience, self-efficacy and develop the youth’s ability to optimize their capabilities in challenging environments, from impoverished neighborhoods in Houston to refugee camps in West Africa and beyond. Her community and educational work leads the youth to reimagine and improve public spaces, improve their life and leadership skills as well as their social contributions while solidifying the fabric of the communities. Karine has been published in Art Houston magazine. Be the Peace – Be the Hope will be featured soon on the national CBS Chicken Soup for the Soul’s Hidden Heroes program.
Karine made Sister Emmanuelle’s quote her own: "Everywhere and always, seek tirelessly the remedy that soothes, sow hope, and your love can make miracles happen."
Noël Bezette-Flores holds a Ph.D. in Education Psychology and Differences and has nearly 20 years’ experience in research with vulnerable populations including homeless youth and immigrant and refugee children in schools and immigrant and refugee family resettlement.
Bezette-Flores has received regional, state, and national honors for her service. She developed partnerships and supervised students in school districts collaborating with nonprofits that resulted in awards from the Texas State Teachers Association and the National Education Association.
Dr. Flores, in 2012 became the Executive Director for the Center for Public Service and Family Strengths at UHD’s College of Public Service where she oversaw civic engagement and service-learning projects. Those efforts led to the Carnegie Foundation Classification for an Engaged University. Currently she is CEO of Innovate at Work, a consulting firm for community- based development, strategical reorganization and visioning, curriculum development, assessment and leadership development.
Bezette-Flores’ commitment to community service led to her appointment by Mayor Annise D. Parker to the board of directors of Houston Media Source (HMS). She was co-founder and served as co-chair of Houston’s Citizenship Month for seven years. The city- wide initiative (held each year in November) celebrates Houston’ s diversity and opportunity for people of all nationalities, faiths and cultures to come together, while encouraging civic responsibility, and volunteerism. In 2013, Houston Woman Magazine named her one of Houston’s 50 Most Influential Women. Mayor Parker honored her work with a Proclamation declaring February 10, 2015 as Dr. Noël Bezette-Flores Day. Her other service includes: UNA-Houston Board, UNA-USA Education Committee, METRO Academy Community Partner, Mayors Advisory Committee for International Communities, Volunteer Houston Board, Red Cross Board Marketing and Outreach Committee and the National Points of Light Conference Education Track co-chair, Welcoming Houston initiatives-education and economic development task force for immigrants and refugees.
Eisha Khan is the founder of United Nations Association Collegiate Chapter at the University of Houston-Downtown and is a current student pursing a B.S in Political Science. She is an avid advocate for combating crimes against humanity, working towards multi-sector problem-solving, U.S. Leadership on global issues, and the inclusion of women at all levels and in all sectors.
Her youthful idealism to improve the world has matured to become a life goal. She works with the United Nations Association – USA to bring together collegiate chapters to promote the Sustainable Development Goals. Carrying the notion of global goals, Eisha was introduced to the Be the Peace – Be the Hope through Dr. Bezette Flores and Karine Parker. In these coming years, via Be the Peace – Be the Hope she aspires to providing policy solutions, raising public awareness and engaging local communities to help the refugee communities.
Thus far, she has actively undertaken research, sharpen the tools for expressing through creativity and promoting local and international cooperation. She is working towards highlighting the unique needs of the refugee population, and has conducted research on restoring resilience via Art-Therapy through the means of education. Working with children and faculty members in Houston and Burkina Faso has truly been a humbling experience for her as she gained firsthand experience, made new friends, overcame challenges and was exposed to a multitude of perspectives.Working on such initiatives makes her optimistic for she sees the world moving towards opening the door to celebrating diversity through progressive communication and pacification between people. She has a bold vision, coupled with a diverse set of abilities. As a young professional, she hopes to take part in community initiatives and learn from the expertise of the local, national and international leaders.
CEO, Innovate at Work