WAVE Office

Stephanie Futter-Orel

Executive Manager

Stephanie Futter-Orel is passionate about fighting Violence Against Women and has a Master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Vienna as well as a Master’s degree in Development Management from the London School of Economics. Austrian by birth, she has lived in London for the past 9 years and worked for over 7 years in women’s specialist organisations dedicated to fighting Violence Against women (frontline roles as well as Senior Management).

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She was responsible for a wide range of direct support services to women who experienced domestic and/or sexual abuse (DA/SA) including e.g. advice and advocacy, shelters, counselling services, representation of survivors in the criminal justice system, helplines, group programmes, awareness raising about DA/SA in the health care sector, prevention work with young people and specialist support services for women with complex needs, trafficked women and those from minority backgrounds. She has also volunteered for several community projects dedicated to empowering women and young people around the world amongst others in Brazil, India, Bolivia, Portugal, etc. Stephanie joined the WAVE Office in June 2017.

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Anca Ciupa

Team Leader

Anca Ciupa has a Bachelor’s Degree in Law at the Babes-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca, Romania and a Master’s Degree in European and National Business Law also obtained in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, Babes-Bolyai University. Additionally, Anca has obtained a postgraduate diploma in International Relations at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna in June 2014. Before working at WAVE, Anca was a co-author on a research project, “Analysis of the draft law to permit the Rosia Montana mining proposal”, where she was in charge with reviewing environmental legislation, decisions of the European Court of Human Rights and illustrating opinions in the report. Anca is a strong advocate of human rights and passionate about bringing her own contribution in this environment.

Léa Dudouet

Office Administrator & Project Assistant

Léa Dudouet recently completed her MPhil in the Reproductive Sociology Research Group at the University of Cambridge. Her thesis focused on the use and experiences fertility-related apps which can be used to avoid pregnancy through qualitative interviews with women based in the UK, in order to understand the role of technology in contraceptive decision-making. Prior to this Léa completed her BSc in Sociology at the London School of Economics and Political Science in 2018, graduating with First Class Honors. Her studies were geared towards intersecting aspects of sociology, focusing on gender, race and sexuality. She was also the treasurer of the Intersectional Feminist Society for two years and acted as a Consent Champion in her final year where she helped facilitate consent and active by-stander workshops and campaigned to introduce mandatory consent training for all incoming students.

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Aside from academia, Léa has been involved with different feminist groups and non-profit organisations both in London as well as in Berlin. In 2018, she interned on a voluntary basis at Frauenkreise, a Berlin-based government-funded feminist project committed to creating a space for intercultural feminist work from an intersectional and antiracist standpoint. Léa has additionally worked at the Berghof Foundation, an independent, non-profit organisation that supports efforts to prevent political and social violence worldwide, and to achieve sustainable peace through conflict transformation.

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Maria Knaub

Grant Development & Monitoring and Evaluation Coordinator

Maria Knaub has a Bachelor’s Degree in East Asian Studies and is currently finishing her Master’s in Development Studies at the University of Vienna. She is passionate about feminism, gender equality and social justice. Previously, she has worked in a variety of positions and industries, spanning from algorithm research to editorial offices. She started as the interim Grant Development and Advisory Board Coordinator at the WAVE Network and is now the Grant Development & Monitoring and Evaluation Coordinator. During her work at WAVE, she is looking forward to putting her prior experiences into social use for ending gender-based violence.

Beverly Mtui

Digital & Social Media Coordinator (cover)

Beverly Mtui has a Bachelor’s Degree in Transcultural Communication (German, English & French) and is currently pursuing her Master’s in Development Studies at the University of Vienna. In 2018, she interned with one of our Members “Work With Perpetrators European Network – WWP EN” for half a year and in 2019, she was an intern at Austrian WAVE Member AÖF. From 2018-2020, she volunteered for FOOTPRINT, a NGO based in Vienna which provides free social and legal advice as well as language courses to survivors of violence and/or human trafficking. She supported them as the head of the undraising team and as board member (treasurer) in her last year with the NGO. Besides being passionate about intersectional feminism and gender equality, she also believes in social equality.

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In March 2019, she co-founded a local radio programme highlighting Austro-African matters with the aim to empower BIPOC communities in Austria. Until February 2021, she was the Youth Ambassador Coordinator and worked closely with the WAVE Youth Ambassadors in developing as well as implementing actions to highlight the importance of youth inclusion in promoting non-violence and in feminist movements. She is currently the Digital & Social Media Coordinator and aims to actively contribute to ensuring and strengthening the visibility and presence of the network and its projects, particularly in the digital sphere.

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Elena Floriani

Communications & Research Officer

Elena Floriani holds a Bachelor’s degree in Cultural mediation and a Master’s degree in Comparative international relations. After study and work experiences in Italy, France, Germany, Tanzania and Austria, she joined the WAVE Office as Communication and Research Officer in May 2019. In the last years, Elena made of her interest in feminism and women’s rights her area of research and work. Following an experience in the field of development cooperation in Tanzania, she decided to focus her Master’s thesis on the legal protection of women’s rights in Africa, conducting a research on the recent developments of the African Union’s human rights system.

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After her graduation, Elena interned at WAVE for three months, a great opportunity to get familiar with the fight against VAW from a European perspective. Later on, she started working for one of WAVE’s members, the Domestic violence intervention center of Vienna, in the public affairs office. Elena is now collaborating with the WAVE team on data collection, publication of country reports and communication strategies for WAVE’s projects.

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Renate Tomenendal


After her traineeship in the retail trade and several years in this area as a manager, Renate Tomenendal completed a part time training course to become a proofed and graduated balance accountant and personnel accountant. After completing this training, she switched to work as an accountant. After the birth of her son and her maternity leave, Renate resumed her employment in 2014 at WAVE, where she has now been working in the non-profit sector for 7 years. Currently, she is working for the non-profit women’s rights associations AÖF and WAVE. In her very demanding job, she is responsible for accounting, personnel administration, balance sheets, budgeting and reporting. As such, her working day is not only very varied but also entertaining and fulfilling. An important balance to this is her much loved sideline as a highly and fully qualified dance instructor in Vienna and Lower Austria.

Antoniya Kisheva

Event Coordinator

Antoniya Kisheva comes from Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria, and has her educational background in International Communication and Social Anthropology. She has specialised in marketing and communication in the NGO sector, as well as in event management. In the past 15 years, she has worked and studied in the USA, the Netherlands, Austria, Germany and Sweden, where she has been involved in the organisation of several festivals and volunteered at many more. Since 2012 she has been living in Vienna, Austria, where she gathered frontline experience supporting women affected by human trafficking. In June 2021, she joined WAVE as an Event Coordinator.

India Stotesbury


India Stotesbury recently completed her MA in International Relations at Leiden University, following the track ‘Global Conflict in the Modern Era.’ Her thesis focused on conflict-related sexual violence and the securitisation thereof, using the Yazidi genocide in Iraq as a case study. This led her to discover that she is passionate about learning more about and fighting against this type of violence, which brought her to WAVE in September 2021.

Alongside this, India volunteered at a women’s centre in The Hague, teaching Dutch to a class of women as part of an empowerment programme. After her internship, she hopes to pursue a career in similar feminist fashion.

Polina Lynova


Polina Lynova recently received her BA from the LCC International University based in Lithuania. Her field of studies was International Relations and Development, and her diploma had a focus on Gender Mainstreaming development projects in India and Bangladesh. She also participated in an exchange program to the United States. Polina is particularly passionate about intersectional feminism, human rights, women-centered policymaking, political activism, ethical consumerism, postcolonialism, minority-rights advocacy, and peacebuilding.

In 2020, she gave a speech about political activism that was presented on a global TEDx platform. In 2021, she had a chance to work with a Palestine-based peacebuilding NGO called Wi’am, which helped to put her theoretical knowledge into practice. Polina has also started her media project called “Hear Her Out” with the focus of discussing the issues of sexism in post-soviet societies and beyond through retranslating the real stories of women who are recalling events related to gender-based discrimination.

Lina Piskernik

Digital & Social Media Coordinator (educational leave)

Lina Piskernik is currently on educational leave. She is the Digital & Social Media Coordinator, ensuring that WAVE’s many projects and achievements are as visible as possible across several social media networks. She is also Communications Coordinator for the Erasmus project DIS.CO & UN Women project CSSP, and assists the WAVE Step Up! campaign. She has a Bachelor degree in International Affairs & German from Florida State University as well as a Master of Science in International Relations & Environmental Technology from

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the Diplomatic Academy and Vienna University of Technology. Lina previously has worked at the International Centre for Migration Policy Development and the Austrian Energy Agency. She enjoys working in the communications field and is looking forward to contributing to making the Europe-wide campaign a success in every way possible.

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