National Coordinator – Haiti
A Haitian-American lawyer who relocated to Croix des Bouquets, Haiti in 2010, Regine Theodat is the local project director for the Vincentian Family’s work in this culturally vibrant nation. With deep roots in Haiti, where her parents were raised, Regine is optimistic and action-oriented.
Following the earthquake, she left a complex criminal and civil legal practice in Boston, Mass., and took a job at the Lamp for Haiti Foundation, where she launched one of the first full-service human rights offices in Cité Soleil. It is one of the most difficult neighborhoods in Port-au-Prince, exactly where she wanted to be, advocating for proper sanitation, adequate housing and voting rights for people who lacked a voice.
In 2011, she joined efforts to coordinate the many Vincentian branches operating in Haiti for the past 30 years, overseeing activities that relate to human, social and business development. A strategic plan she is drafting focuses initiatives on each of these elements necessary to break the cycle of poverty and supporting Haitians as they move along the spectrum to become self-sufficient. Educational and business opportunities are key components of the plan.
“Although the situation appears to be dire, Haiti’s development is quite possible, and lies in tapping into its vast human and natural resources, such as ample ground water,” she said. “Providing Haitians with the skills and equipment necessary, like fish-farm cage techniques helps them develop the ability to exploit water sources available in their own backyards.”
Regine earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and managerial marketing at Simmons College and her law degree at Northeastern University, both in Boston. Even while in law school, she was a teaching fellow for a project designed to decrease barriers for minority-owned small businesses and a separate project for high school students that educated them about their constitutional rights.