Meet The Staff

The Learning Institute is made up of a small but efficient staff comprising of both youth and experience. With a blend of both national and international staffers, each individual has their own unique set of expertise and skills that contribute to the working of the organization. 


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Srey marona
Executive director

As one of the founding members of The Learning Institute (then known as CBNRM Learning Institute), Marona has been involved with the organization since 2005.

He received a Bachelor’s degree in Technology of Food Production at the Institute of Cambodia, Phnom Penh in 1994 followed by a Master’s degree in Rural Development and Agriculture in 2006 and also holds a Diploma of Community Forestry Development from Thailand.

His professional and research interests include social community mobilization for collective action on natural resource challenges, indigenous and marginalized people and participatory action research.

Marona’s past experiences involve working with the International Development Research Center of Canada and World Wide Fund for Nature in Cambodia. He has also been involved in the community forestry network in Cambodia since 1997. 


ken riebe
proposal, grants & reporting manager

 Graduating with a Bachelors in International Relations from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1976, Ken began his career in 1981 as an American Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala.

Since then, he has worked in a wide variety of development and relief operations around the world and before joining the Learning Institute in 2017, Ken was stationed in Uganda with the UNHCR as a Refugee Camp Manager. 

Ken speaks Spanish, Khmer, Vietnamese as well as a bit of Arabic but his beloved hobby is gardening: 
“it’s easy to stop and smell the flowers but even better to plant them” – Ken.

Connect with Ken Riebe on LinkedIn


Lalin joined The Learning Institute in 2015 after amassing 14 years of experience working in finance and administration as a manager, coordinator, officer and internal auditor and accountant with NGOs and international companies.

Lalin has worked with organizaions like the European Union, USAID, SIDA, UN, ADB and World Bank Fund and also has has seven years of experience in teaching accounting at Universities, Institute, Colleges, centers and other NGOs





As a news junkie, Twitter is where you will always find Lesly.

Her journey as a multimedia storyteller began while pursuing her Master’s Honors degree from La Trobe University, Melbourne. Having worked for organizations like The Walkley Foundation, The International Federation of Journalists Asia-Pacific as well as a short journalistic stint with Newzulu in Australia, she went on to freelance as a Digital Media Consultant for a year in India, which she calls home, before packing her bags for Cambodia to join The Learning Institute in 2017.

Lesly is a massive sports nerd who yells at her TV every weekend and squanders her free time (and money) charting a course for travel and adventure.

Connect with Lesly on Twitter | LinkedIn | Personal Website


San Samuon

Having graduated with a Bachelors Degree of Agriculture in Animal Sciences and Veterinary Medicine and Association of Agriculture in Animal Health and Production at Prek Leap National School of Agriculture, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Samuon has since had more than 12 years of experiences working with INGO & LNGO in Project Management, Community Development/livelihood, Decentralization and De-concentration, Advocacy, Child Right and Child Protection.

Samuon has worked with CEDAC, FACT, PSOD, ChildFund Cambodia and also he has experiences working in Grant Management, Researching, Designs Curriculum of Training Modules, and Sponsor Relationship Works included Child Enrolments, Child Progress Report (CPR), Reassignment Material (RAM), and Child Correspondences Processing.

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Touch Panha
capacity building officer

With a bachelor’s degree in International Relationship at Pannasastra University of Cambodia (PUC), Panha has more than 5 years of experience working in project management, research/development, gender mainstreaming and community empowerment as well as developing training module and provide training courses. 

Outside of work, Panha's interest lies in science and tech. While he fills his free time watching the news and keeping a track of current affairs, his holidays are spent (mostly swimming) with his family. 

Connect with Touch Panha on LinkedIn

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Hor Otdam
senior research and training assistant

Otdam blends creativity and detail to deliver outcomes of The Learning Institute's research and development programs.

Holding a B.Sc in Agricultural Economics and Rural Development from Royal University of Agriculture, Much of Otdam’s career has been in research and development and he is currently heading a climate change adaptation project.

Prior to joining The Learning Institute, he has a few years of experience in managing research and rural development project in areas such as agriculture, natural resource management and climate change mitigation/adaptation for nonprofit organizations and freelance consulting services. 

Otdam is passionate about developmental work and enjoys playing football and running in his free time.

Connect with Hor Otdam on LinkedIn

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Khim Kosal
Finance & Administration assistant (Volunteer)

Kosal is a student at Vanda Institute, Phnom Penh majoring in Accounting. She is currently the finance and administrations volunteer at The Learning Institute