Director, Columbia Global Centers | Santiago

Karen Poniachik has been Director of Columbia Global Centers | Santiago since September 2011. She is also a member of the corporate boards of directors of Metro S.A. and Nuevo Pudahuel as well as an advisor Maersk Container Industries San Antonio.

She serves in the advisory councils of the Chilean-American Chamber of Commerce, AmCham Chile, and of Universidad Católica’s Center for Corporate Governance. She also teaches the “Corporate Compliance” segment of the Corporate Governance Certification Course offered by Universidad Católica.

Ms. Poniachik was Chile’s Minister of Mining in 2006-2008, time during which she chaired the boards of directors of state-owned companies Codelco, Enap and Enami.  From March 2006 to March 2007 she also served as Minister of Energy. She was Chile’s Special Envoy to the OECD in charge of the country’s accession process to the Organization, which was successfully completed in January of 2010. Previously, she was Executive Vice-President of the Foreign Investment Committee (2000-2006); and Director of Business and Financial Programs at the Council of the Americas in New York (1995-2000).

Karen Poniachik graduated as a journalist from the Universidad Católica de Chile (1987) and holds a Master’s degree in International Affairs from Columbia University in New York (1990).

She has served in the corporate boards of E.CL, British American Tobacco Chile, and Terpel Chile. In addition, she was visiting fellow at the University of Miami’s Center for Hemispheric Policy (for 2010-2011 academic year) and adviser to the World Economic Forum’s Mining & Metals Industry Group (March 2008 - May 2010).

Program Manager

Gisele Feldman is Program Manager at Columbia Global Centers | Santiago.

She has specialized in commercial strategy and marketing working for multinational corporations as LAN Airlines (2008-2010) and Dow Jones (2012-2013). She has also built experience in the consulting industry as a partner at Openpreneur Consulting.

Ms. Feldman volunteered in gender issues working for a former presidential candidate (2013) and is currently volunteering leading the events team at TuComunidad at Circulo Israelita de Santiago (CIS). The “Empodérate” Movement at Circulo Israelita Santiago is her main project, a series of gatherings to highlight Jewish women’s contribution to the national society. Previously was research assistant for work and family balance studies conducted by Universidad Católica de Chile Business School and the NGO ComunidadMujer (2007-2008).

She studied business and economics at Universidad Católica de Chile and holds an MBA from HULT Boston (2012).


Communications Officer
Catalina Navarro is Program and Communications Officer at Columbia Global Center │Santiago.
She has specialized in research and production for television, focused on medium or long-term reports linked to social policy. She worked as Communications Officer at the National Institute of Human Rights in projects and campaigns related on gender issues, labor relations, culture, migration, and human rights in general.  Ms. Navarro last job was to head the Press Department of the Government of Santiago.
She is journalist and holds a Diploma in Public Policy, a Diploma on “Introduction on International Law of Human Rights” and Master Degree in “Political Action, Institutional Strengthening and Citizen Participation in the rule of law” in Madrid.


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