vision & mission | history | staff | board of directors
MRI executive director, Steven Botkin, with Men's and Women's Action Groups in Nimba, Liberia
Men’s Resources International (MRI) helps men around the globe practice and promote a healthy, compassionate, and responsible model of masculinity. Our approach is to identify and support men’s networks in all stages of development, and provide training, coaching, materials, and technical assistance to help these networks grow in size and effectiveness and to connect with other like-minded men's and women's organizations.
All of our programs welcome male and female participants, and promote community-based leadership with men and women as partners. We use participatory, experiential education to promote personal growth, leadership development and organizational sustainability.
In 2004, twenty two years after founding the Men’s Resource Center for Change, executive director Dr. Steven Botkin envisioned a new organization that would connect, strengthen and support like-minded men’s programs around the world. Men’s Resources International (MRI) was incorporated as a nonprofit later that year.
Soon after, MRI was contacted for by Stephen Mbati, a Zambian man seeking guidance on the development of a Zambian Men’s Network. MRI organized and sponsored a U.S. study tour for Mr. Mbati, culminating in a joint presentation with Steven Botkin at the United Nations’ “Working with Men and Boys for Gender Equality” training institute for delegates to the “Beijing+10” Commission on the Status of Women conference.
This presentation sparked dialogue and connections with a number of African activists and marked the beginning of MRI’s continuing work with African organizations.
In 2005, James Arana, a social worker, MRI consultant, and co-visionary, accepted the position of Associate Director, becoming MRI’s second staff member. In April of 2006, MRI hired marketing and communications director, Daniel Coyne and moved to its present offices on Main Street in Springfield, Massachusetts.
In response to a growing stream of inquiries and requests, MRI has conducted workshops and provided consultations and technical assistance locally, nationally and internationally working with U.S. groups in Massachusetts, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Vermont, and international groups from Bolivia, Brussels, Canada, and Pakistan. Beginning in 2006, James and Steven have made multiple trips each year to various African countries including Zambia, Nigeria, Liberia, and Rwanda to conduct onsite trainings and consultations.
Additionally, MRI has partnered with major international aid organizations, and participates in inter-organizational roundtables dealing with global issues of health, gender, and violence.
Steven D. Botkin, Ed.D.
Executive Director Emeritus, Men’s Resource Center for Change
In 2004 Steven left this position and founded Men’s Resources International to support the development of men’s programs in diverse communities and build a global network. Dr. Botkin lectures, leads workshops and provides consultations for colleges, organizations and individuals throughout the United States and the world, including the United Nations, Japan, Zambia, Nigeria, Liberia and Rwanda.
Steven is a 2006 recipient of the William Pynchon Medal: an honor bestowed to “individuals from the region who have demonstrated exceptional community service with compassion, humility and grace.”
James Arana, a native of Belize and former resident of the Bronx, is a social worker and community organizer with over 25 years of experience. Before joining MRI, Mr. Arana spent 4 years providing direct services and strategic consulting in Western Massachusetts as a prevention specialist for the Western Mass. Prevention Center, Cooley Dickenson Hospital, and the Men’s Resource Center for Change.
Prior to his work in Massachusetts, James Arana spent over two decades working in community development in New York City’s South Bronx through Unitas Therapeutic Community. Under the tutelage of Dr. Edward Eismann, Ph.D., James trained promising young adults to become mentors for at-risk children and teens in their own neighborhoods. The program garnered international attention for its positive impact on school attendance and community involvement while reducing gang participation, street and domestic violence, and unwanted teenage pregnancy.
James spends his free time teaching Martial Arts and writing poetry.
Marketing & Communications Consultant
Daniel Coyne polished his marketing skills at the Direct Marketing Association, where he held four titles, including director of membership and research marketing. Following his years at the DMA, Daniel served as marketing director for a major healthcare company, overseeing both business and consumer marketing. After 10 years in New York City, Daniel returned to his native Massachusetts to launch a multichannel marketing consultancy, providing strategic and creative direction to a range of regional, national and international clients.
Daniel received his B.A. from Middlebury College in Vermont, and his M.F.A. from the University of Florida. He has taught Direct Marketing and Copywriting at New York University, and is a member of the Direct Marketing Association, the DMA Agency Council, and the Type Directors Club.
A Burundian colleague of Men's Resources International, Pascal Akimana has been has been working with men and boys to end gender-based violence all of his adult life. He has worked with EngenderHealth and Sonke Gender Justice Network in South Africa, as well as with MRI and the International Rescue Committee in Cote D'Ivoire. He is smart, skilled, articulate (in four languages!), and committed.
David M Thompson (Board Chair)
Retired school counselor
Springfield Department of Health and Human Services