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Our Executive Team 

Our executive team consists of seasoned professionals: A clinical psychologist, a public health expert, a career development professional, and a theologian.  We are the perfect team to provide state of the art tools for assessing and nurturing the four cardinal elements of hope: Attachment, Survival Skills, Mastery Lessons, and Spiritual Development.


Anthony Scioli, Ph.D.

President of The Hope Institute 
Research Co-Director

Dr. Anthony Scioli is a clinical psychologist in the state of Massachusetts (USA) and a Professor of Psychology at Keene State College (University System of New Hampshire). 


Dr. Scioli has been teaching psychology classes in assessment, therapeutic interventions, and positive psychology for thirty years.


Dr. Scioli received his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Rhode Island and completed fellowships in health psychology (Harvard University) and behavioral medicine (Harvard Medical School).  Dr. Scioli is a consulting editor for the Journal of Positive Psychology and APA’s Psychology of Religion and Spirituality. 

Dr. Scioli is the leading expert on the psychology of hope.  He has written two books on this topic, including Hope in the age of anxiety (Oxford, 2009).  As a hope scholar and practitioner, Dr. Scioli has authored numerous chapters for professional books, and research articles for peer-reviewed journals. He has delivered more than 60 research presentations on hope at national and international conferences. 


Dr. Scioli has developed state-of-the-art tools for hope adult and child assessments and interventions.  His research has been supported by private foundations and international nonprofits as well as the National Institutes of Health.  He has provided hope-centered trainings for the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health. 

Dr. Scioli’s international work is extensive, and includes: Haiti, Colombia, Guatemala, Italy, the Netherlands,  Benin, Ethiopia, Rwanda, South Africa, Pakistan, and the Philippines.


Dr. Scioli is currently co-editing The Oxford Compendium of Hope with Dr. Steven van den Heuvel.  


JoAnn Stevelos, M.P.H.

Vice President for School & Health Organization Accounts

JoAnn Stevelos is a Public Health Advisor, Speaker, Researcher, and Children’s Health Advocate.  JoAnn is the Hope Institute contact for inquiries from Public Health agencies and Non-Profits.

JoAnn received a Master’s in Science (Bioethics) from Albany Medical College, a Master’s in Public Health from the State University of New York, and a BA from Columbia University.  JoAnn is dedicated to working with people who lead with love and hope, and who advocate for justice and promote lives of peaceful co-existence. 


JoAnn is a creative, entrepreneurial leader with a compassionate style and a strong history of transforming innovative ideas into effective, well-funded social programs. JoAnn has managed all aspects of complex health programs in the fields of public health, health science research, community development, and youth initiatives. 

JoAnn was the Director of the NYS Center for Best Practices to Prevent Childhood Obesity, as well as Director of Research, Evaluation, and Learning for the Clinton Foundation’s Alliance for a Healthier Generation’s children’s wellness programs, and Lead Evaluator for Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move program. 

JoAnn divides her time between the Hope Institute and her position as Executive Director of the Coalition for Supportive Care for Kidney Patients at George Washington University.

As a consultant, JoAnn has worked with Trust MYRIVR NZ, The Institute for International Health and Education, Stop the Silence, Health Mentor, Healthiest IO, Eat REAL, HealthCorps Inc., and Catskill Sanctuary.  

JoAnn has worked with organizations in every state in the US as well as Canada, Colombia, New Zealand, Australia, Albania, Estonia, Thailand, South Africa, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Iran, Iraq, and Qatar. 


Raza Abbas, M.B.A.

Vice President for Corporate Accounts

Raza Abbas earned dual degrees in Business Administration and Communication from The University of Arizona (USA).  His business experiences are diverse, from directing programs at two universities in Pakistan to more recent work as a consultant for a German global economic development firm as well as the World Bank Group. 

Raza is Pakistan’s first Corporate Facilitator, with experience in the following areas: Human Resource Development, Leadership, Branding & Marketing, Design Thinking, Strategic Communication, Career Development, Coaching, Employee Mentoring, Teacher Training, Youth Engagement, and Entrepreneurship.   

Raza has strengthened diverse institutions from inception to execution. His organizational development sessions have been described as highly interactive and thought provoking. For more than a decade, Raza has advocated and strengthened the human development profession around the globe (North and South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Oceania, and the Middle-East).

Raza is a frequent contributor to LinkedIn livestreams and YouTube. (Follow at 

Raza's many accomplishments include:

Integrity Award from the Arizona Blue Chip Program: University of Arizona;  International Career Practitioner Award from National Career Development Association: USA; Outstanding Career Practitioner Award from Asia Pacific Career Development Association; Contributor: ‘The World Book of Hope’: Lannoo (2018); Delegate for UNESCO Entrepreneurship Education Meeting;  International Delegate: UN General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace. 

Raza can be reached at


Steven van den Heuvel, Ph.D. 

Vice President for Religious and Spirituall Accounts
Research Co-Director

Dr. Steven C. van den Heuvel is a theologian, author, and researcher with a strong interest in hope and spirituality.  Dr. van den Heuvel is the Hope Institute Contact for inquiries from Religious and Spiritual Organizations.


Dr. van den Heuvel is Associate Professor of Systematic Theology at the Evangelische Theologische Faculteit (ETF), Leuven (Belgium); he is also director of the Institute of Leadership and Social Ethics (ILSE), a research institute of the ETF.  Also, he is Extraordinary Researcher of the Faculty of Theology at North-West University, South Africa.

Dr. van den Heuvel is an expert on the integration of Christian theology and ecological ethics (e.g., Bonhoeffer’s Theology and Fundamental Issues in Environmental Ethics, published with Wipf & Stock, 2017). In addition, he writes on leadership as well as social ethics.


Since 2006, Dr. van den Heuvel’s research has focused exclusively on hope. He leads

The Hope Project, an interdisciplinary research program carried out by ILSE in conjunction with

other partners, such as the Erasmus Happiness Economics Research Organisation (Erasmus
University -  the Netherlands).  His work has been supported by the Goldschmeding Foundation. 

More recently, Dr. van den Heuvel has been collaborating Dr. Scioli and The Hope Institute.


Dr. van den Heuvel has edited two books on hope: Driven by Hope: Economics and Theology
in Dialogue (Peeters, 2018),  and Historical and Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Hope
(Springer, 2020).  


He is currently co-editor with Dr. Scioli, of The Oxford Compendium of Hope. 


Dr. van den Heuvel can be reached at

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