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OUR TEAM

Diplomatic Experience. Business and Social Integrity. Solutions-Directed Commitment.

Michael Ranneberger

Managing Partner

Ambassador Michael Ranneberger is a managing partner and co-founder of Gainful Solutions. 

 

Since his retirement from the U.S. Department of State in 2016 as a Career Minister, he has applied his decades of experience in the field of international diplomacy as a private sector consultant, helping others achieve their global business aspirations.

 

During his distinguished diplomatic career, Michael’s call of duty took him Latin America, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. 

 

He achieved his field’s highest level of responsibility by representing the Unite States as its ambassador to three countries - Mali, Kenya, and Somalia. 

 

Other milestones in his government career include his time as the Special Representative of the Secretary of State, where Michael helped lead negotiations which resulted in the Sudan Peace Agreement of 2005. 

 

When crisis erupted in Kenya following the disputed presidential election at the end of 2007, Ambassador Ranneberger, working closely with African Union mediator Kofi Annan, was instrumental in ending the bloodshed and bringing about fundamental reforms through adoption of a new constitution in 2010.  

 

For those efforts, he was dubbed “Ambassador of Peace” by the Kenyan people.  

 

Additionally, he was part of the team which negotiated the independence of Namibia and the withdrawal of Cuban forces from Angola.

 

During 2011-16, he served as the State Department’s senior foreign policy adviser to three commanders of the U.S. Central Command, including former U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

 

He is the recipient of the State Department’s Distinguished Honor Award, its highest, Presidential Meritorious Service Awards, the Department’s Anti-Slavery Award for his efforts to combat human trafficking, and numerous other recognitions.  

 

In addition to his leadership role with Gainful Solutions, Michael also serves as chairman of the board of Afridokta, a Florida-based company working to expand access to health care in Africa through its telemedicine platform. He also serves as an adjunct professor at the University of South Florida.

 

Following his graduation from Towson University with a double major in history and social science, Michael obtained a Masters Degree in history at the University of Virginia. Michael is honored to be the recipient of an honorary doctorate from Africa Nazarene University.

Soheil Nazari-Kangarlou

Managing Partner

Soheil Nazari-Kangarlou is a managing partner and co-founder of Gainful Solutions, where he provides advisory services to clients considering startup or expansion operations in complex global marketplaces. 

 

Soheil brings more than 30 years’ experience to this position having led the introduction of multiple entrepreneurial ventures around the world and served as an advisor to large enterprises representing technology, health care, retail, manufacturing and distribution services. During his expansive career, he has opened new markets for clients in the United States, Europe, Australia, and the Middle East.

 

In 2003, after holding leadership positions in business development with Verizon, Soheil launched Eye On Your Technologies, Inc. (EOYTECH), a company specializing in customized, standalone surveillance hardware systems with cloud-based intelligence monitoring and data storage security solutions. Client engagements included Target Corporation, Yahoo, Zurich Insurance, State Farm Insurance, and Opus West.  

 

While leading the company, he cultivated a domestic and international partner network with distributors in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, and continues to enjoy strong working relationships with industry influencers, government representatives, and other commercial enterprise professionals across the full spectrum of business.

 

Following the sale of EOYTECH, Soheil assembled an international team of engineers to develop a prototype security application and was retained as an advisor for several startup technology companies in the behavioral biometric security industry.  

 

He later served as the Chief Sales and Marketing Officer for Drumbi Corporation with oversight of system architecture, integration services, and global partnership development.

 

Soheil holds multiple certifications in IT applications and continues to be an early adapter of emerging technologies.  
He is a frequent presenter before business groups and internet audiences on a range of business topics, including market analysis, product identification and development, strategic partnerships, venture capital, international contract negotiation, market penetration, sales, and business operations in evolving economic cycles. 

Constance Berry Newman

Senior Executive Consultant

Constance Newman is a senior executive consultant for Gainful Solutions, bringing over 50 years of experience in the private and public sectors, including multiple high-level positions within the U.S. government.

 

Beginning with her presidential appointment as the Director of the Volunteers in Service to America (domestic equivalent of the Peace Corps), Constance went on to serve other key federal postings such as Commissioner of the Consumer Product Safety Commission and Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, focused on Indian and elderly affairs.

 

Some years later, after co-founding a government regulatory procedures consulting firm, succeeded by her time as President of the Institute of American Business, she began what would be a long-term focus in the sphere of foreign affairs, with a particular emphasis on African issues. 

 

Constance’s reputation as an expert in global policy started in earnest while operating as a private consultant on a World Bank project living in Lesotho from 1987-88, where she worked on the establishment of a broad housing plan for the populous. A period of time thereafter, during which she served as Under Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution and on the board of the congressionally-established body that oversaw the District of Columbia’s finances, she was selected to serve in another presidential administration, this time as the Assistant Administrator for Africa at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Constance followed that assignment with her tenure as Assistant Secretary for African Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. In both roles she traveled extensively throughout the continent. 

 

Having won numerous awards throughout her career, including the honor of being selected to the Government Hall of Fame in its 2019 inaugural class, Constance also serves on the Board of Directors of the International Republican Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization committed to advancing freedom and democracy worldwide.
 

Dr. Djibril Diallo

Senior Executive Consultant

As a senior executive consultant on the Gainful Solutions team, Dr. Djibril Diallo brings over 35 years of experience interconnecting the private sector with foreign governments and the global system of non-profit organizations, principally while working within the United Nations (UN) system. 

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In his expanded capacity, Djibril also serves as the President and CEO of the African Renaissance and Diaspora Network (ARDN), a coordinating body working under the auspice of the UN to foster unity between African nations and all peoples of African descent. He leads ARDN’s ‘Pathway to Solutions’ initiative which aims to popularize the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals in collaboration with UN entities and other partners from business, academia, government, civil society and the world of sport and culture. 

 

While at the United Nations, Djibril led and coordinated responses and projects in various capacities all while liaising with heads of state and government, civil society, the media and other stakeholders to advance the vision of the UN Charter and the public awareness of the entities he served. 

 

Recruited by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, Djibril held several high-level UN positions with distinction, including as Regional Director for West and Central Africa of the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS; Director of Communications for the United Nations Development Program; and as Spokesperson for the President of the United Nations General Assembly.

 

A Native of Senegal, where he received a Bachelors Degree in Modern Languages and Education, Djibril followed this achievement by spending time in England where he earned a Post-Graduate Certificate in Education and also in Race Relations and Multi-Cultural Studies from Nottingham University. Soon thereafter, he attended the University of London where he obtained a Doctorate (PhD) in Linguistics and Communications. 

 

Djibril is fluent in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese. He also speaks several African languages and has a knowledge of Arabic. 
 

David Snider

Director, Communications and Outreach

David Snider serves as Gainful Solutions' principal advisor for all the firm's outreach needs.

 

Utilizing his broad background in public and private sector communications, Snider leads his Washington, DC-based consulting practice, where he has partnered with businesses in fields such as public affairs, lobbying, global development, business advocacy and government contracting, helping organizations achieve their comprehensive goals. 

 

Previously, Snider worked at the U.S. Department of State, initially as Deputy Director in the Office of Strategic Communications & Planning, followed by his time as lead spokesperson and Director of Press at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). While there, he oversaw media relations, message creation and the execution of crisis communications on behalf of the global development and humanitarian assistance agency.

 

Earlier, he spent the bulk of his career as an account director in advertising agencies in New York, Los Angeles and Washington, DC helping to enhance brands such as United Parcel Service, Stanley Tools, Union 76, National Geographic and Entergy Services. 

Alex Casanova

Senior Director, Operations

Alex Casanova is Gainful Solutions Director of Operations, overseeing market research, opportunity development, client onboarding, project management, and partner relations.

 

Alex began his professional career as an Engineering Project Manager with the Boeing Company, where he coordinated and led all certification activities between Boeing's Main Cabin Group and the domestic (FAA) and foreign (JAA, CAA) regulatory agencies for new 767 and 747 derivative programs, including negotiations and issue resolution. He was also responsible for the report, investigation, and closure of in-flight safety incidents with  the FAA, and developed several division wide processes for Safety Incident Reporting and Certification Basis Determination.

  

After his time at Boeing, Alex continued work in leadership positions within  a vast array of industries, with a focus on business development  advertising, sales, and marketing operations. Some of these companies were truly pioneers in their spaces. At Zynga, the first social gaming company, Alex served as the company's original revenue director, growing revenue from zero to $900k/day, while also managing all marketing and advertising operations.