Ascary Arias is the president and founder of Vidas de Esperanza. He is originally from Ixmiquilpan, Hidalgo, Mexico, where he lived until the age of 17. Ascary came to the United States in 1991 and at the age of 25, enrolled in Guilford Technical Community College in Greensboro, N.C. After getting his GED, Ascary enrolled in community college, then transferred after a semester to Greensboro College, where he received double majors in sociology and Spanish, as well as double minors in art and international studies. In his junior year of college, Ascary decided to help the people in his hometown and thus decided to create Vidas de Esperanza in 2004. He graduated from Greensboro college in 2005. Ascary is the heart and soul of Vidas. His inspirational leadership is one of non-profit’s greatest assets. He leads by example and his heart is bigger than life.
John s. kizer
Dr. John S. Kizer is Vice President and Medical Director for Vidas. He is a professor of medicine, pharmacology and geriatrics at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. Dr. Kizer graduated from Princeton University and Duke University School of Medicine. Subsequently he completed his internship and residency at Johns Hopkins Hospital followed by three years of research at the National Institutes of Health. In 1975, he joined the Medical faculty of the University of North Carolina where he continues to serve as a researcher, teacher and medical practitioner. His interests in caring for the underserved have culminated in multiple clinical efforts directed toward helping these individuals, among which is the establishment of a Geriatric Clinic for elders that speak only Spanish. He joined Vidas de Esperanza at its inception and has led multiple medical missions to the indigenous tribes of the State of Hidalgo, Mexico.
Carolina Torres has a Masters Degree in Architecture in her home country of Honduras Where she worked for 10 years. Mixing architecture and her passion for arts, she worked for museums and cultural centers. She also volunteered for 5 years with missionary groups servings foster kids. She moved to Pittsboro NC in 2014 and has volunteered for Vidas de Esperanza for the past 2 years, learning the ins and outs of running the medical and dental clinics. She has been instrumental in the recent growth of our patients numbers and continues to find volunteers to match the growing demand for medical and dental help to Chatham and neighboring communities. This year Carolina has been promoted to Assistant Director of our Medical and Dental clinics. Carolina has an 8 year old daughter Maya.