The people

Meet the people behind EBU, including information about the elected leadership of EBU, board positions and EBU office staff.



The EBU is led by a board consisting of 5 officers (President, first and second vice presidents, treasurer and secretary general) and up to 8 ordinary members. They are elected by the EBU membership at the General Assembly for the period of four years. Board members are accountable to the General Assembly. All board members are blind or partially sighted.

Detailed information about its composition, voting procedure, powers and functions can be found in the EBU Constitution.


The Board carries into effect the general policies and working objectives of EBU and prepares a strategic plan to that effect. It appoints project groups and committees and any other bodies as it deems necessary to assist in meeting the targets set in its strategic plan.


  • President: Tytti Matsinen, Finland
    Tytti Matsinen

    Tytti Matsinen (born in 1987) is a partially sighted Finn with a MSc in Industrial Engineering and Management and a MA in Theology majoring in Social Ethics. She has extensive experience of a wide range of non-governmental organizations within the disability, human rights and foreign aid. Matsinen is a Quality and Accountability Specialist in Jyväskylä University School of Business and Economics and has prior experience as a Human Rights Adviser and as Advocacy Adviser on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
    She has served on EBU Board since 2019, in the board of the Finnish Federation of the Visually Impaired since 2020 and the board of Abilis Foundation since 2022. She has experience in strategic management, planning, monitoring and evaluation as well as human rights advocacy. Tytti Matsinen is a mother of a young child and enjoys baking, knitting and following and debating current affairs.

  • Vice President: Bárbara Martín Muñoz, Spain
    Bárbara Martín Muñoz

    Bárbara was born in Granada, Spain, in 1974, she is partially sighted.

    She gained a law degree in 1997 at Granada University, and Politics and Administration Degree from the Spanish Open University in 2018.
    She worked in the legal Department of a real estate agent from 2000 to 2007, and in 2007 became the Manager at the ONCE Technical Office of European Affairs, a position which she held until January 2019. From February 2019 she is the
    head of the coordination unit of institutional agreements and external collaborations of ONCE. She has been EBU 2nd Vice-President from October 2015 to February 2024 when she became EBU 1st Vice-President.

    Her mother tongue is Spanish and she speaks English and Italian. She is a very dynamic person who enjoys reading, travelling and playing concert castanets.

  • 2nd Vice President: Kevin Kelly, Ireland
    Kevin Kelly

    Kevin lost his sight in 2001, at the age of fourteen.  He currently holds the position of Head of Policy, Partnerships & External Affairs with Vision Ireland.  Kevin has held a broad range of roles across multiple sectors spanning government, media, politics and the not-for-profit sector. Prior to joining Vision Ireland, he was a Senior Civil Servant in the Department of Health working in the policy area of Mental Health.  Kevin previously also held the position of Advocacy and Communications Manager with The Asthma Society of Ireland.  He also served as interim CEO of The Society during his tenure. Prior to that, Kevin worked as a parliamentary assistant in Leinster House.  He has also worked on local and national media, with Newstalk 106-108. He holds a degree in journalism from DCU and a Master’s in Public Affairs and Political Communications from DIT.

    Kevin has extensive board and committee experience.  He is a former board member of The National Transport Authority of Ireland, The Disability Federation of Ireland and  Vision Sports Ireland. He has also represented Vision Ireland and the Asthma Society in multiple national and international forums. Kevin has represented his country at blind football.

  • Treasurer: Roland Studer, Switzerland
    Roland Studer

    I was born in Switzerland in 1961. Due to a gene defect, I have progressively lost my vision and only have light perception today. I completed vocational training as a chemical lab technician and later studied chemistry and business administration at a institute  of applied sciences.

    In 1993, I founded my own lab supply company, which I led for 31 years. I remain a member of its board of directors. During 8 years I was also a member of the advisory board of a Europe-wide lab supplier. My professional activities have allowed me gain extensive experience on the strategic level.
    Between 2005 and 2017 I was president of a section of the Swiss Federation of the Blind (SFB) and presided over the conference of presidents during 4 years. Since September 2021 I am the president of the SFB. Besides my native language German, I am fluent in English and French.

  • Secretary General: Maria Thorstensson, Sweden

    Maria Thorstensson


  • David Aldwinckle, United Kingdom
    David Aldwinckle

    I was diagnosed with Stargaardt’s disease at the age of 9 and was certified Severely Sight Impaired/Blind 14 years later. I hold a degree in Law and have more than 22 years working in the sight loss sector in roles covering Information & Advice, Welfare Rights, Independent Living, Housing, Employment,  and peer connection. My current role as Director of Insight & Customer Voice at the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) means I lead all work aimed at understanding the true experience of living with sight loss, turning it into useful insight to drive strategic and operational development.

    My passionate belief is that blind and partially sighted people’s experience is an asset to society that underpins all aspects of my work at RNIB.

    When not working I enjoy cooking, reading and going to the gym, as well as spending time with my family and supporting Tottenham Hotspur Football Club.

  • Dagmar Filgasova, Czech Republic
    Dagmar Filgasova
    The world of blind people came into my life about 30 years ago. In 2010, I got to be closely involved in projects and funding within Czech Blind United (SONS). Since 2016, I am a directly elected member of the SONS’s Council of the Republic, I chair the SONS’s Economic Committee, I was instrumental in the creation of the Active Club SONS - a nation-wide meeting ground of young blind and partially sighted people.
    An important part of my professional life is taken up by management of two national cultural festivals – one showcasing professional blind artists, the other designed for amateur artistic achievements of people with severe visual impairment. Within the Active Club, we conduct nature roamings, residential camps, foreign trips. Within the EBU, I am a member of the Women's Network, the Culture Network and the EDU Network. Within the Women’s Forum, I have so far participated in person in two events. In the field of international culture, I have been a member of the Accessible Museums Commission.
    I have also participated in several EBU online conferences focusing on culture. During my visits to organisations of the blind abroad, I focus specifically on culture, young people and funding.
  • Andreas Havsberg, Norway
    Andreas Havsberg
    Andreas Havsberg lives in Oslo, Norway, and is partially sighted because of albinism. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and an Executive Master of Management degree. Today he works full-time for the Norwegian Central Bank with IT security within financial stability.
    Andreas has extensive organisational experience from the Norwegian Association of the Blind and Partially Sighted (NABP). Previously he headed the youth organisation, contributed to a variety of committees and is currently a board member of NABP’s central board. He is engaged in a diverse range of political and organisational matters, including advocacy, rehabilitation, and international cooperation. He is of the opinion everyone in society shall have equal opportunities for an active and independent life, at school, at work and in their leisure time.
    In his spare time, he enjoys running, walking in the mountains, or going skiing, traveling and spending time with family and friends.
  • Hubert Perfler, Italy
    Hubert Perfler

    My name is Hubert Perfler and I live and work in Trieste, Italy. I was born visually impaired and, since the age of 21, I have been working as an official of the Italian Union of the Blind. Married to Ada, who is blind, we have a beautiful daughter. I am president of a public institution that provides services to people with visual impairments, and for more than 10 years, we have participated in several European projects in this area. I am also vice-president of the Italian Federation of all centers that support people with visual disabilities, where my duties are related to foreign affairs (I represented the federation at the European event on tactile books).

    My expertise is in independent living in all its aspects, including tourism, sports and leisure. I am available to pursue our common goals for the benefit of people with visual impairments.

  • Jakob Rosin, Estonia
    Jakob Rosin

    Jakob Rosin, 29, chairs the Estonian Blind Union and is an accessibility expert. Completely blind, he brings a unique blend of personal insight and professional expertise to his advocacy and lobbying work. Jakob, a Tallinn University journalism graduate, excels in communication and storytelling, skills he applies both in advocacy and as an entrepreneur. He co-founded Sparrow ACcess, a accessibility consultancy with his wife, collaborating with startups, businesses, civil societies and the public sector to foster accessible, inclusive experiences. He also works for the Estonian Public Broadcasting as a technology journalist.

    As a member of the European Blind Union Board, Jakob is determined to use his combined talents in journalism, entrepreneurship, and advocacy to elevate the voices of visually impaired individuals across the EU. He has actively taken part of the work of EBU-s commission for liaising with the EU. CUrrently, he is leading the EBU-s taskforce dedicated towards making payment terminals accessible for blind and partially sighted consumers. When asked about his hobbies, he often is heard saying “food. Just lots of good food.” He can also be spotted hiding in bushes and trees with microphones, capturing the perfect bird song as a field recordist or, sometimes, just lounging, while reading a gripping science fiction book.

  • Sabine Stroem, Germany
    Sabine Stroem
    Sabine Stroem was born in 1962 and lives in Germany, Berlin with her guide dog Eddie. She is visually impaired and losing vision due to a genetic disease. She holds a bachelor degree in business administration and has 25 years professional experience in project management and consulting on an international level. Since five years she is an active member of the the blind community in Berlin and supports her local organisation. Sabine also has a network in the guide dog owner community internationally. She is a member of the German DIN/CEN forum, which defines standards for assistance dogs in Europe.
  • Sinan Tafaj, Albania
    Sinan Tafaj
    Sinan Tafaj was born on 17.02.1956, he lost his sight in 1963 in a bomb accident and was re-educated as a blind man. He holds a University Degree from the University of Tirana, Albania (1978-1982), in Law and has a vast experience in judicial proceedings, civil and criminal procedures, communication strategies and has been part of international human rights networks. He holds a Doctor of Science Degree in international rights and is certified as a human rights expert. He established the Albanian Blind Association in 1991 and led it until 2018. He played and still plays a prominent role in protecting and furthering the human rights and freedoms of blind and partially sighted people in Albania, the Balkan region and in Europe at large.
    Mr. Tafaj has been a member of the EBU's Executive Board since 2007 and is an international expert on the rights enshrined in UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and participated in a number of debates as part of several activities in the Balkans and Europe at large. His solid expertise in the area of human rights has been beneficial not only to audiences, but also to many civil society actors.
    He is also able to establish good relations in a multicultural and national setting, with all team members, regardless of seniority. Dr. Av. Tafaj is currently president of the Albanian Disability Union and Chief Expert of the Institute of Expertise on PWD.
    He currently heads his own private law studio, which is one of the most prominent studios in the capital of Albania, Tirana.
  • Anja Uršič, Slovenia
    Anja Uršič

    Anja Uršič, born on April 8, 1992, holds a master's degree in Nonprofit Organization Management, Knowledge, and Human Resources from the University of Ljubljana. Currently pursuing a doctoral degree at the Faculty of Social Sciences, she focuses on researching the employment of the blind and partially sighted. Committed to advancing awareness on this issue, Anja publishes scientific articles, delivers lectures at the Faculty of Social Sciences, and recently she served as a national researcher for social economy in Slovenia.

    Her dedication extends to the Union of the Blind and Partially Sighted of Slovenia, where she serves as a representative in the working group for employment and plays a key role in promoting employment opportunities for the visually impaired. She is also a member of several decision-making bodies at regional and national level in Slovenia and throughout her engagement she has always strived for the recognition of the rights of persons with disabilities.

EBU representatives to WBU Executive Committee

  • Tytti Matsinen, Finland
  • Roland Studer, Switzerland
  • Rodrigo Santos, Portugal
  • Maria Thorstensson, Sweden

EBU Office

The EBU Office is based in Paris, France. It supports the Board, commissions and steering groups in its work and is a central contact point for information to the EBU membership, partners, external parties and the general public.

The Executive Director of the EBU Central office is Lars Bosselmann - ebudirector at

The other members of staff are : 

  • Gary May - Information Officer: ebuinfocom at
    Gary takes care of internal communication at EBU, including web site updates, newsletters, and diffusion of documents.
  • Valérie Bertrand-Vivancos - Membership Officer. membership at
    Valérie provides coordination with and between member associations. She also assists the EBU Leadership in implementing the network's policies and activities.
  • Antoine Fobe - Head of Advocacy and Campaigning: ebucampaigning at
    Antoine coordinates and gives impulse to EBU campaigning at EU and national level, acts as advocacy officer at EU level and liaises with EU institutions and other NGOs for that purpose.
  • Nacho Lopez - External Communication Officer: nacho.lopez at
    Nacho coordinates EBU's communication aimed at decision makers, journalists and other organisations and manages our social media accounts.
  • Amandine Guillemois - European Project Officer: amandine.guillemois at
    Amandine organises the implementation of many EBU activities, and also takes care of grant applications, management and reporting.
  • Fillaricéa Gill - Office Assistant: fillaricea.gill at
    Fillaricéa deals with general queries, office matters and EBU logistics.