Clean Futures- Woman hugging founder Lucas Hixson

OUR VISON

We envision a world where the workers and families of people who live in affected areas are provided adequate education, healthcare and safe work environments.

OUR MISSION

The Clean Futures Fund (CFF) raises awareness and provides international support for communities affected by industrial accidents and long-term remedial activities.  

We identify and finance humanitarian aid projects and the exchange of information and experiences from affected communities in order to support long-term remedial activities around the world. We are dedicated to strengthening international relations and advancing the United States as a cornerstone of humanitarian aid and a contributing member of the global community.

OUR VALUES

Transparency and Integrity – We act transparently and with integrity in all relationships and operations.

Leadership – We are constantly working to advocate for men, women and children who have been affected.

Cooperation – Together with our partners we are able to impact the lives of so many who need it the most.

Clean Futures Women Sewing in Rehab Center

CFF activities will always be guided by our mission and vision

CFF’s values of transparency and integrity, leadership, and cooperation are never compromised

CFF personnel are held to the highest standards of fiscal responsibility

CFF humanitarian projects must have stakeholder support

CFF projects must support the local economy and workforce

CFF projects will compliment and cooperate with locally available services

CFF will not compete with other non-profit organizations to provide duplicative assistance

CFF project objectives will be SMART, Specific, Measurable, Assignable, Realistic, and Time-bound

OUR CURRENT GEOGRAPHICAL FOCUS

Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant and Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, Ukraine

Chernobyl worker town of Slavutych, Ukraine

CFF Co-Founders Erik Kambarian and Lucas Hixson at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant

OUR HISTORY

CFF was founded in 2016 by Erik Kambarian and Lucas Hixson. Erik first traveled to Ukraine in 2013 as an official visitor of Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant with a group of professionals with backgrounds in nuclear energy and emergency response. He met Lucas on a subsequent trip in 2015. During their time in “the Zone”, Erik and Lucas developed strong relationships and friendships with Chernobyl workers that still have decades of remediation work ahead of them. Each subsequent visit opened their eyes to the myriad challenges faced on a daily basis, the working conditions in and around the area, and the support services necessary to take care of a generational workforce and their families.

In 2016, they established CFF and in 2017 human and animal healthcare programs were started that remain immensely successful. Lucas left the organization in late 2021 while Erik continues as co-founder and president of the board and says, “We remain committed to the community and population affected by the Chernobyl catastrophe. Our mission is even more important in light of the unjust aggression against Ukraine by the Russian Federation. We will be here for the long term.”

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LEADERSHIP

  • Erik Kambarian


    Erik Kambarian

    Co-Founder and Board President

  • Dr. Jennifer Betz

    Dr. Jennifer Betz, DVM

    Board Member

  • Tom Clawson

    Tom Clawson

    Board Member

  • Sarah Jacobs

    Sarah Jacobs

    Board Member

Erik Kambarian


Erik Kambarian

Co-Founder and Board President

Erik Kambarian is an occupational health and safety professional for the State of Illinois. In 2019, Erik retired from the fire service where he served as a volunteer firefighter, career firefighter, and fire chief. Erik has also served as a director of safety and security in the private sector. Mr. Kambarian has undergraduate degrees in fire science and political science, graduate degrees in public administration and management, and is a current PhD student. Erik has been visiting Chernobyl since 2013 and teaches radiological preparedness to first responders for the U.S. Department of Energy. He lives in the St. Louis, Missouri area with his wife, four children, and four dogs. Dogs Pravik and Dvaa were born at Chernobyl NPP.

Dr. Jennifer Betz

Dr. Jennifer Betz, DVM

Board Member

Dr. Jennifer Betz was born and raised in Florida where she earned her undergraduate degree in Biology at the University of South Florida in 1993. She graduated from Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine with her DVM degree in 1997. Dr. Betz owned and operated a private small animal practice in Sandy, Oregon for 20 years. Her professional interests are in orthopedic and soft tissue surgery as well as veterinary forensics.

During her career as a private practitioner she worked concurrently as a Federal Employee for the Department of Health and Human Services, NDMS, on the National Veterinary Response Team (NVRT), where she was instrumental in the relief efforts during Hurricane Sandy’s Aftermath. Dr. Betz also works as a professional responder for the ASPCA National Field Response Team (NFR), Formerly (FIR), working on large scale anti-cruelty cases such as dog fighting, cock fighting, hoarding and puppy mills. Dr. Betz has provided veterinary care to displaced animals during hurricane disasters, Katrina, Sandy, Irma and Maria. In her spare time, she often volunteers her skills providing veterinary medicine and surgery in underdeveloped countries with different organizations such as Veterinary Ventures, CANDI, Animal Balance, SPCAI and AVMF. She is currently the Veterinary Medical Director for Dogs of Chernobyl with the Clean Futures Fund. She is founder and board member president of Visiting Veterinarians International and also sits on the board of Veterinary Ventures. Dr. Betz obtained her Masters degree in Veterinary Forensics from the University of Florida in August of 2019. Dr. Betz is also an instructor for the National Animal Cruelty Investigation School through the University of Missouri, Law Enforcement Training Institute. She is an active member of the Oregon Veterinary Emergency Response Team(OVERT), the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), the Oregon Veterinary Medical Association (OVMA), and the Portland Veterinary Medical Association (PVMA). In her personal life she enjoys hiking, restoring old cars, skeletal articulations and competing in Dock Dogs and Extreme Air Dogs competitions with her Yellow Lab, Sidney and her Golden Retriever, Roxy.

Tom Clawson

Tom Clawson

Board Member

Tom Clawson has over 35 years of experience in Radiation Health Physics and Radiological Training. Tom and his wife, Celeste, own TRG, Inc., an Idaho Falls-based company that provides counter terrorism and radiological training and exercise support services to federal government customers in the U.S. and abroad. TRG has been in business for over 20 years. Tom has trained thousands of emergency responders in radiological and nuclear response and has presented at conferences throughout the U.S. and abroad. Prior to founding TRG, Tom worked in Health Physics/Radiation Safety at various U.S. commercial nuclear power plants. Tom became interested in Chernobyl after working at the Three Mile Island Nuclear Power Plant and he has been coming to Chernobyl since 2016. After his first visit to Ukraine, he recognized the unique opportunities inside the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone to educate others about the environmental consequences of widespread radioactive fallout. He formed TRG Tours and began organizing trips to Chernobyl for professionals with radiological/emergency response backgrounds to gain first-hand experience with measuring radiation and contamination levels in an area with widespread environmental contamination. Tom has a passion for Ukraine and the amazing people who live there and is honored to serve on the board of CFF.

Sarah Jacobs

Sarah Jacobs

Board Member

TEAM MEMBERS

Stanislav Shekstelo

Liaison Officer (Ukraine)

Dr. Victoria Beznoshchenko, MD

Medical Director (Ukraine)

Ludmila Yuraskho

Dogs of Chernobyl Liaison (Ukraine)

Jake Hecla

Scientific Advisor (USA)

Cate Redfern

Development

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