Tokyo Yamathon Board Members

The Tokyo Yamathon Board Members are a part of the IVG (International Volunteer Group), a group of volunteers who work together to support charities throughout Japan. We aim to increase awareness within Japan on a scope of issues both local and international by coming up with unique ways to raise funds and give support. We are an entirely volunteer-founded group of people from across the globe with a desire to make a real difference!
Joe Pournovin – Founder and CEO

I work with the team to create, shape and bring to life unique ideas like Tokyo Yamathon and Sea to Summit, with the purpose of raising as much as money as possible for great causes. It’s an unbelievable feeling to be able to do what we do – empowering our participants by giving them, and indeed ourselves a platform to shine and raise a lot of money in the process. Our team, our participants, our sponsors and supporters; it’s an absolute pleasure working with these real-life superheroes. Together we encourage and push each other to think of new ways of changing the world, one fundraising event at a time. We always welcome new members so, if you are looking for something to get your teeth into with the opportunity to meet some amazing people both personally and professionally, come and join us!

Joe Pournovin
Koji Oishi – COO (Chief of Operations)

By day I work as an engineer but, outside of work I am a classical pianist. Working for IVG gives me a lot of opportunities to meet nice people and help each other to achieve many kinds of goals which, to me, is similar to the way of playing music to interact with many people and share something beautiful. I believe working with IVG allows me to inspire my creativity and enthusiasm to help harmonise lives all over the world.

Koji Oishi
Mitsuhiro Honda – Chief Strategy Officer

Since I participated as a corporate sponsor in 2014, I engaged Yamathon as a participant and volunteer until now, and have joined as an organizer as the Yamathon, which I realized so meaningful to help. Tokyo Yamathon is a very unique event that the people can contribute the society through joining a fun running/walking activity. And each of IVG staff is so passionate, with full diversity and fun to work with. I’m working to make the participants can have fun, walk safely and giving a benefit to the sponsors as well through my experiences as a corporate staff, participant and operating volunteer. I’m excited to have more people to join the Tokyo Yamathon and other IVG activities.

Mitsuhiro Honda
Heena Sinha – Program Manager

After working for over five years in Investment Banking in India, I realised I am passionate about bringing about positive change in the world, working with a talented group of people who are equally passionate. IVG is exactly the group I was looking for. I was amazed by their infective energy and joined them the very moment I met them. Among other ways of contributing to the group, I principally help with sponsorship and fund-raising wing of events. It is truly a life-changing experience to witness how the money we have raised through charity events has had such positive effects in people’s life. I urge anyone who feels the same way to join us as participants or volunteers and walk along in this beautiful journey.

Heena Sinha
Sandip Chamling Rai – IT Director

I joined IVG in 2016 as a website manager and content editor. Shortly after i joined the team, i realized that i was a part of a group who were dedicating their already valuable time and skills to help people all over the world. This inspired me more to help the team in the way i could.I manage websites related to IVG and its events such as Tokyo Yamathon. I also help in creating sponsors banner as well as certificates for Yamathon participants and Volunteers.

Sandip Chamling Rai
Michelle Simmer – Educational Services Coordinator

As a school teacher for 28 years, I work with motivated students to help change the world. Students want to give back and help others, I organize and get them there. A new member of Yamathon, I bring my experience and my passion working with volunteer youth groups in the USA and here in Japan.

Michelle Simmer
Ebony Luper – Youth Volunteer Coordinator

Teaching for 12 years has taught me how to enjoy working alongside students, modeling selflessness before selfishness. Our young volunteers strive to develop leadership skills by following the examples set forth by our International Volunteer Group members. As a youth volunteer facilitator, I enjoy planning, organizing, and contributing to both the vision and mission of the Tokyo Yamathon. Working with our youth on international service projects through Rustic Pathways and being an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated have both permeated my desire to serve others. Our Yamathon group works in a manner that is selfless, humble, and mindful of community needs. I am thankful to be among such an amazing group of individuals!

Ebony Luper
Zain Abba – Media

I started working with IVG to record footage for the 2017 Yamathon. During that event I witnessed, firsthand, the magic of the event. It was an amazing experience and it was an honour to be a part of event with so many wonderful participants and volunteers. Since then I have had the pleasure of continuing to work with IVG to produce content to increase awareness of what IVG is about and the impact of events, such as Yamathon, have on people. I look forward to seeing you at the next event!

Zain Abba
Masaki Hashimoto – Media

I enjoy taking photos in portraiture, landscape, nature, events, food, still life, motorsport and railway photos both for my job and in private. I took part in Yamathon in 2016 as a videographer. Thousands of people have joined this challenging charity event over the years and each of them has their own story before and after joining Yamathon. As a camera person, I take this opportunity to capture everyone’s vivid life in my photos and footage and make it part of the Yamathon history! Show me your best smiles when you see me at Yamathon!

Masaki Hashimoto
Lan Tran – Diversity & Inclusion Manager

The Yamathon 2018 earnings were donated to a school in my home country of Vietnam, which made me join the management team. Thanks to Yamathon, I have realized that I can enjoy volunteering. I think the more fun the more fun, the bigger the donation will be and I'll do my best for the participating, volunteer and management teams to enjoy the Yamathon experience. Other than Yamathon, I am a sales person for AI software at an IT company.

Lan Tran
Kaz Yamada – Design Coordinator

I am doing architectural design. Since joining Yamathon five years ago,I have been on occasion with Joe as one of his good friends. Seeing him working hard as if possessed by something, I always wondered if he could help. I retired in the middle of my work, and now I can finally make my own time. This time, I received a request for Yamathon's business card design, so I thought I could do it even if I was not good at English. Although I am new at IVG, I hope that in the future I will be able to get used to English and be able to do more than just design as a member of IVG.

Kaz Yamada