Meet the people behind Swissnex in Boston and New York

Our Team

Boston and
New York

We are a group of entrepreneurial, creative, and relentless connectors and knowledge brokers dedicated to bringing people and ideas together across borders and disciplines. Our team includes Harvard graduates, a budding novelist, an entrepreneur, and more.

CEO, Consul

Benjamin Bollmann

Benjamin is the CEO of Swissnex in Boston and New York. He was previously Deputy CEO at Swissnex in San Francisco, where he launched interdisciplinary programs spanning from science communication to humanitarian action and human rights in the digital age. Before joining Swissnex in 2015, he worked as a journalist and communication specialist at the intersection of science, data, and design in Switzerland. Benjamin is a graduate of ETH Zurich and has conducted neuroscience and AI research at MIT.
Head of Swissnex in New York

Oliver Haugen

A Geneva native, Oliver has managed our New York office since 2014, designing programs in innovation, startup acceleration, and emerging media. Before Swissnex, he worked with think tanks, governments, the World Economic Forum – and even on Wall Street. Trained in political science (AB, Harvard University; MSc, London School of Economics), Oliver remains fascinated by the historical and social forces shaping innovation in such areas as science, media, or the built environment.
Head of Academic Engagement

Brendan Karch, PhD

As Head of Academic Engagement, Brendan connects the Swiss higher education ecosystem to academic partners on the East Coast, driving forward programs at the intersection of science, technology, society, and university innovation. Before joining Swissnex in 2021, he worked as a tenured professor of modern European history and earned his PhD in history from Harvard University. In his free time, Brendan enjoys hiking snowy New England and sampling every cuisine Boston has to offer.
Communications Manager

Alexandra Alteio

One half of the communications team, Alex is involved across all activities in Boston and New York supporting new and ongoing initiatives across various platforms and creating engaging content. She received her BS in Communication Management and Design with a concentration in communications design from Ithaca College. She volunteers as the social media manager of Boston’s chapter of Creative Mornings, a breakfast lecture series founded by Swiss designer Tina Roth-Eisenberg.
Innovation Lead

Joséphine Erni

As our New York-based Innovation Lead, Josephine develops and executes various startup and entrepreneurship programs. Before joining Swissnex, Josephine worked at the Swiss Business Hub USA, helping Swiss startups enter the US market. Josephine holds a BA in Business and Economics from the University of Basel and an MSc in International Economics from Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. In her free time, Josephine enjoys exploring New York and picking up new hobbies such as sailing and painting.
Digital Production
and Content Manager

Anour Esa

The other half of the communications team, Anour thrives at the intersection of digital content and storytelling, working on content strategy and directing photography, videography, written content, podcasts, and more at Swissnex. Anour has worked and lived in Germany, Jordan, and Palestine, co-founded a coffee start-up, and produced a podcast. He has consulted with various other start-ups on design, marketing, and branding, ranging from a solar power company to a tea company. He holds a BA in International Relations from The George Washington University.
Operations Lead

Johanna Lemon

As part of the Operations team at Swissnex, Johanna is an instrumental part of day-to-day operations, facility management, event planning, hospitality, and more. Prior to joining Swissnex, Johanna served in the Peace Corps in Morocco, managing a youth center there. She also served as an AmeriCorps member in Illinois. In her spare time, Johanna is a budding novelist, with several self-published books. She is a graduate of Hollins University in Roanoke Virginia.
Academic Engagement Associate

Leslie Reinhard

As the Academic Engagement Associate, Leslie supports the Swissnex team in connecting the Swiss higher education ecosystem to academic partners on the East Coast. Prior to joining Swissnex, Leslie pursued her passion for traveling by working as a flight attendant for a Zurich-based airline with destinations around the world. In her spare time, she likes to explore what the Boston area has to offer in terms of cuisine, bars, outdoor sports, and more. Leslie has a B.A. in International Affairs from the University of St. Gallen.
Academic Engagement Associate

Sebâ Topuz

As an Academic Engagement Associate, Sebâ supports the Swissnex team in connecting the Swiss higher education ecosystem to academic partners on the East Coast. Prior to joining Swissnex, Sebâ worked as a project assistant at the University of Bern and is an M.A. Candidate in Public Management and Policy at the KPM Center for Public Management. Before that, she majored in Political Science at the University of Zurich and focused her research and work on the strategic management of higher education and public organizations.

Science Office in Washington D.C.

As part of the Swissnex network, the Science Office at the Embassy of Switzerland in Washington D.C. is a policy-oriented bureau that aims to strengthen cooperation and bilateral relations in education, research, innovation between Switzerland and the USA.



Join the Team!

Discover job openings in Boston, New York, and in our global network.


Alumni Stories

The alumni stories project celebrates what makes the swissnex network special – our people! To highlight our diverse network we selected five unique alums to share their very personal tales and invited Swiss graphic designer and illustrator Christina Baeriswyl to visualize their journeys.

Meet our alumni