Jean-Michel Tijerina is Founder and CEO of Child Education International, Inc. The organization was started in 2004 in response to a need for advanced secondary education and improved health care in rural Cambodia. While on a visit to Cambodia, he learned how the education and health systems suffered under the Khmer Rouge; the academic infrastructure and professional culture were destroyed; an entire generation of educators was lost during the genocide.
Jean-Michel Tijerina is Managing Director of The Tijerina Group LLC, an executive placement and consulting firm. He studied East Asian Studies and Economics at Columbia University where he was President of his class and was a Fellow with the Ministry of Education in Taipei, Taiwan. At Columbia University, he organized the Tsunami Relief Fundraiser in 2005 which inspired him to assist further in development aid to Southeast Asia. He is twice recipient of the Columbia University Leadership and Service Award; and in 2010, he received the Global Citizenship Award for Leadership in Helping Humanity.
Beginning in 2009, the organization expanded its efforts to reach out to children across Sri Lanka and Haiti. In response to the November 2010 Phnom Penh stampede, the Cambodian Education Excellence Foundation invited Jean-Michel to assist and join the Koh Pich Victims Fund as a Special Advisor. In 2011, Jean-Michel is excited to spearhead impact tourism as ChildEd’s most recent initiative to ensure the organization’s financial viability and independence. In 2012, Jean-Michel joins the Board of Directors of Emerging Leaders in Technology and Engineering (ELiTE), started at Columbia University’s class Engineering for Developing Communities where ChildEd was a case study, and working collaboratively in education facets across Jamaica, Ghana, and Tanzania.