Dedrick Asante-Muhammed is Director of the Racial Wealth Divide Project at CFED. As Director, Dedrick’s responsibilities include strengthening CFED’s outreach and partnership with communities of color, as well as strengthening CFED’s racial wealth divide analysis in its work. CFED's Racial Wealth Divide Project will also lead wealth-building projects that will establish best practices and policy recommendations to address racial economic inequality.
April Atkins is the Community Affairs Specialist for North and Central Florida for the FDIC. She is responsible for educating banks, municipal entities and community-based organizations on community reinvestment opportunities as well as facilitating partnerships between banks and community-based organizations to promote community and economic development in communities of low wealth.
Barry Altland is a writer, speaker, thought leader and published author of the book, “Engaging the Head, Heart and Hands of a Volunteer,” a simple guide for feeding the passion of those who serve.
Barry blends world-class leadership principles from the for-profit and non-profit ministry worlds, with his own numerous experiences as a volunteer and leader of volunteers, to offer a fresh perspective on volunteer engagement.
The result of these experiences is content-rich guidance for leaders of volunteers to help them lead with Otherliness. As leaders embrace Barry’s unique perspective, they develop into leaders better prepared to touch the hearts of volunteers by engaging them . . . one person at a time.
Lori Auxier serves as the Director of Outreach Services for the Office of Student Financial Assistance, Florida Department of Education. She manages a team of six Outreach Representatives who travel the state educating in the areas of: financial aid, college access, student loans, and financial literacy to high schools, postsecondary institutions and community based organizations. All services and materials are provided free of charge. Lori Auxier lives in West Palm Beach, FL.
JahKiya S. Bell, Ed.D.
JahKiya S. Bell is the senior director of community investment for the Heart of Florida United Way
and an adjunct instructor for the School of Public Administration at the University of Central
At United Way, JahKiya works to provide leadership and assistance for achieving goals related
to HFUW’s Investing in Results initiative. This includes assisting with the planning and
development of strategic, operational and tactical accountability, overseeing the development of
all grant processes including systems development, training and technical assistance for
applicants, and contract management for awarded grants.
JahKiya celebrated 18 years of service with HFUW and 6 years of service with UCF in August,
JahKiya holds a Doctor of Education with concentration in human services administration from
Nova Southeastern University and a Master of Nonprofit Management from the University of
Dr. Evelyn Bethune
Dr. Evelyn Bethune selected as A Phenomenal Woman 2015, and one of the Most Influential Women in Business for 2012 and 2014 by the Daytona Beach Business Journal. She is the CEO of the Bethune Group, Inc. and Bethune Publishing House, Inc. A published author, sought after lecturer and motivational speaker, her day to day work includes grant writing, management of transitional housing for the homeless and life skills trainer. Dr. Bethune trains the trainer in how to provide positive images to diverse groups. Her workshops include Healing Racism and How to become a Published Author.
Kelvin Boston is an award winning financial journalist, best-selling author, and popular public speaker. He is the host and executive producer of the Moneywise with Kelvin Boston Public Television Series. Moneywise with Kelvin Boston is a multicultural financial wellness series that airs nationally on public television stations. He is the best-selling author of “Smart Money Moves for African Americans” and President of the Moneywise Foundation. www.Moneywise.TV
Rusty Bozman For over twenty-two years, Mr. Bozman held various senior leadership roles in all aspects of Human Resources for large publicly traded and private organizations. For ten years combined, he served as the top human resources executive for multiple organizations, including as Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Corporate Development for The St. Joe Company, Chief People Officer for Utilipath and as the Vice President of Human Resources for One Call Care Management.
Mr. Bozman built his career establishing human resources strategy in the information technology, healthcare, and real estate sectors, with organizations including Computer Associates International, The St. Joe Company, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Maryland, and with a contractor supporting the Department of Defense. During this time, he developed expertise in the areas of strategy development, executive team alignment, organizational and leadership development, performance effectiveness, survey development and total rewards.
Mr. Bozman is in strategic partnerships with the University of North Florida’s Division of Continuing Education, Dr. Elliott Rosenbaum and uThink, Inc., and Assessment Technologies Group, and is a Certified Compensation Professional. He holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Florida, and a M.S. in Industrial / Organizational Psychology from the University of Baltimore, MD. He served on the 2010 Board of Trustees and as a 2009 Board Member for the Jacksonville Regional Chamber of Commerce, and held board seats on various charitable and county organizational boards, including the 2005 Super Bowl Host Committee, 2004-2005 Duval County voting precinct volunteers, and as a volunteer with Habijax 2003-2004 (Habitat for Humanity). He is currently an active member of San Juan Del Rio Catholic Church.
Kristopher Budí Joined Catalyst Miami in December 2016. Prior to joining Catalyst, he was the Manager of Lending at Accion East and Online for the Florida Region. He has extensive experience in guiding entrepreneurs as they realize their financial dreams through financial education and by connecting these individuals with the financial resources needed to grow their small business. He graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and is currently pursuing a Master of Business Administration at the University of Florida Hough Graduate School of Business.
Holly Bullard serves as Director of Financial Stability Initiatives at United Way Suncoast, where she oversees the planning and implementation of financial stability programs, strategies, and collaboratives. Prior to joining United Way Suncoast, Holly worked as Legislative Aide to U.S. Congressman Rubén Hinojosa, a senior member on the House Financial Services Committee and Chair of the Financial and Economic Literacy Caucus. She served as his lead advisor on financial services and housing issues, with a focus on financial empowerment for low-income Americans. Previous to her work on Capitol Hill, Holly worked on data quality at the U.S. Department of Education and on financial stability strategies at United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona. Holly has a Masters in Public Policy from Georgetown University and a Bachelors degree in Political Science from Emory University.
Heidi Copeland , a Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Agent in Leon County Florida plans, implements and evaluates educational programs for Families including empowering individuals and families for economic success.
Lee Davenport is Principal at Davenport Consulting. In this role, he works with non-profit organizations, corporations and government agencies to create and deliver financial empowerment strategies. He has designed, implemented, managed, and evaluated financial inclusion projects reaching millions of underserved Americans. He served as a member of the IRS’ Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee (IRS-ETAAC). He was the architect of MyFreeTaxes.com, a premier nationally distributed tax preparation program teaching organizations how individuals could file their own taxes. Prior to that, he managed the nation’s largest free low-income tax preparation network at the Food Bank for New York City. Lee has degrees from the University of Texas at Austin and New School for Public Engagement in New York City.
Lynn Drysdale, Attorney representing consumers, including senior citizens in Florida for 29 years with Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, Inc., an adjunct consumer law professor at the University of Florida Law School and member of the Consumer Advisory Board of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
Sarah Margaret Ellis
Sarah Margaret Ellis AFC, is the Family and Consumer Sciences Agent for Citrus County Florida. She provides a variety of programs promoting financial well-being and economic development to the community at large. Ms. Ellis manages 8 Florida Master Money Mentor volunteers who provide one on one financial management education. Prior to joining UF Sarah worked for Elder Options, the Area Agency on Aging in Mid Florida.
Scott George has been a compassionate visionary in the church and nonprofit world for over thirty years. His ability to communicate leadership principles and insights have motivated and inspired groups of all sizes. He currently serves as Senior Pastor of Pine Castle UMC in Orlando, FL. For the last 15 years, he served as the co-founder of United Against Poverty in downtown Orlando, and currently is helping to launch a new community center, Orlando Hope. Scott is the author of 5 books: “Living Beyond Ordinary, ”“Doing Good, Great, ” “GPS: Guiding Principles for Success,” “Do Good, Be Great,” “Doing Good Works”
Lars Gilberts is the Statewide ALICE Director at United Way of Broward County. Lars uses the United Way ALICE Report to equip businesses, nonprofits, funders and policy makers with common data and language to improve policy and practice for those who are Asset Limited, Income Constrained and Employed. Prior to joining United Way, Lars was the Director of Financial Stability at Branches, where he served more than 10 years. While at Branches, Lars started and grew a variety of programs that promoted financial self-sufficiency through emergency services, VITA free tax preparation, financial education, personal financial coaching, the automotive microloan Ways to Work program and small business services. His commitment to finding sustainable solutions for businesses and families alike has led to a number of regional and national research and speaking opportunities. Lars completed a BBA in Marketing at the University of Texas Pan American as well as an MBA in Management from Barry University.
Kate Griffin is CFED's Vice President for Programs, providing strategic oversight for the organization’s asset building and financial capability programmatic agendas, including savings, homeownership and entrepreneurship. In her tenure at CFED, she has designed and led programs to scale asset-building strategies to reach more low-income children and families, consulting with community-based organizations and government agencies to improve practices and strengthen outcomes. Ms. Griffin holds a B.A. in international studies from Kenyon College and an M.A. from American University’s School of International Service.
Janet de Guehery
Janet de Guehery As Communications and Marketing Manager, Janet de Guehery develops and implements branding and marketing strategies and programs for Florida Community Loan Fund, a statewide CDFI. She is responsible for communications with investors, supporters, borrowers, and policy makers, ensuring consistent messaging across all channels and platforms, including materials for print and web. She works closely with all departments, actively promoting the success and positive impact of FCLF borrowers in Florida communities. Janet has experience with for-profit and nonprofit, across the fields of marketing, administration, and accounting; enabling her to see the complete picture in FCLF’s lending transactions from beginning to end.
Shelia D. Jackson
Shelia D. Jackson, is the Program Coordinator for the Campaign for Working Families an Initiative of the United Way
of Volusia-Flagler Counties, in Daytona Beach, Florida. Sheila is a native of Montgomery, Alabama, but
has been a resident of Volusia County for 32 years. She earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physical
Education and Recreation, from Alabama State University with a focus on Secondary Education. After a
career in higher education as a Financial Aid Counselor for 22 years, she joined the United Way of
Volusia-Flagler as an AmeriCorps VISTA Financial Literacy Outreach Liaison, where she developed a
working knowledge of financial education materials and served as a liaison between the university and
colleges as well as of United Way Partners and Campaign Donors. As Program Coordinator Shelia is
responsible for organizing, coordinating and the recruitment of volunteers for the IRS VITA (Volunteer
Income Tax Assistance) Program, managing the operation of 13 tax sites throughout Volusia and Flagler
Counties and she engages United Way partner agencies and other community organizations
opportunities to offer Financial Literacy classes to the low and moderate income individuals and families
in both counties. This experience allows Shelia to offer to the Volusia-Flagler communities the tools and
resources needed to become financially secure.
In her spare time she continues her service to her community by working on projects with her sorority,
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Jack and Jill of America, Incorporated, Associates Group and
her church, Stewart Memorial United Methodist. She is the proud mother of two adult children a
daughter, Dedra and a son Christopher. She loves to shop and enjoys going to movies.
Heather Janey is a 4-H/Family and Consumer Science Extension Agent with UF/IFAS. She provides programming in her community in the areas of nutrition, health, and financial wellness for both youth and adults.
Lisa Junkerman Both a strategist and practitioner, Lisa Junkerman delivers 25 years of applied, integrated marketing expertise on local, national, and global levels. She has worked for Fortune 250 companies, including Motorola, Inc. and Progress Energy (now Duke Energy), and in the higher education industry where she was Assistant VP and CMO for Strategic Marketing for Rollins College. Lisa has had an opportunity to provide marketing consulting services for clients including Florida Community Loan Fund, Special Olympics Florida, Digitic Interactive, ITEC Entertainment Corporation, Sno Spot/Snow Magic, Ascend IT Solutions, and Wittenburg University. Lisa has an MBA degree from the Crummer Graduate School of Business at Rollins College and a BA in Business Administration with a marketing major from the University of South Florida. She has also been an adjunct marketing instructor at Crummer Graduate School.
Penny King is a seasoned Community Affairs Specialist for the Division Consumer Protection
(DCP) located in the Atlanta Regional Office. She began her career at the FDIC in Dallas, Texas
on February 25, 1991, in the Division of Liquidations, liquidating assets and assisting with failed
In 1997, she joined the Community Affairs Program, to promote the Community Reinvestment
Act (“CRA”), economic and community development and motivates partnerships between
financial institutions and community based organizations to revitalize communities. Ms. King
ensures equal access to credit, work with lenders and the public to revitalize communities and
serve as an intermediary to further fair lending objectives.
Darren Liddell serves as the Community Financial Director of Catalyst Miami's Prosperity Campaign, working directly with clients and directing the organization's wealth-building programs. He previously managed Miami-Dade County's VITA Tax program and worked as a Managing Financial Coach at the United Way Center for Financial Stability serving over 250 clients each year. He has over 6 years of financial education, tax preparation, partnership, and program management experience. Darren graduated from The University of Georgia (Go Dawgs!) with a degree in Family Financial Planning and a certificate in New Media. His favorite financial topics include credit building; tax planning, budgeting, long-term savings, financial apps and technology.
Rob Lindsey is a banking professional of 11 years and has focused on financial education in the community for the past 4 years. Rob has a passion for educating groups and individuals on key financial concepts that were not taught in school with the goal of changing lives one at a time. Education: Bachelors of Science, Franklin University Masters of Business Administration, University of Tampa
Lesley Mace is a Senior Economic and Financial Education Specialist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta’s Jacksonville Branch. Prior to joining the Fed, she was an Instructor of Economics and Director of the Center for Economic Education at Auburn University Montgomery and a high school economics teacher.
Fiona Markovich has been in banking for over 30 years, starting in England and then continuing in the US. After 20 years working in retail branches to help clients achieve their individual financial goals, Fiona transitioned to providing Advice, Guidance, and Education to community groups including companies, churches, and non-profit organizations. Fiona believes that everyone deserves access to the information they need to make sound financial decisions; regardless of their current financial situation. Education: Degree in Banking through the Chartered Institute of Bankers.
Lisa Mifflin is the Community Affairs Officers for the OCC. She is responsible for providing Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) training, technical assistance and community development resources to banks, OCC examiners and other stakeholders. She also leads and participates in CRA examinations for community and large banks in the Southern region.
Chris Moreno, Prosperity Financial Manager at Catalyst Miami earned his bachelor's degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and his Master’s of Education degree from the University of South Florida. He worked in higher education before joining Catalyst Miami as a Public Ally in the Public Allies Miami program. Chris went on to work as a Financial Coach at the United Way Center for Financial Stability, where he helped working-class families and individuals achieve financial independence in the areas of personal finance, budgeting, asset management, and credit repair. Chris has been trained and certified to serve as a Financial Coach through the NeighborWorks America Program, as well as to prepare taxes through the IRS VITA Program. He excels at working with clients to set and achieve their financial goals.
Carree Musgrove is the County Extension Director and Family & Consumer Sciences Extension Agent in Columbia County. She is responsible for programming that empowers individuals and families to build healthy lives and achieve social and economic success.
Joyce OdongoThe senior community development officer for central Florida. She represents the company in community and economic development activities. In her role, she establishes and maintains relationships with community organizations, such as activist groups, community agencies, nonprofits and minority organizations.
She has over 10 years’ experience both in the corporate and not for profit industries. She has been instrumental in developing key relationships within the community, managing philanthropic efforts, addressing the needs of the low- and moderate- income families, and providing financial education seminars.
Prior to her career at Wells Fargo, she spent several years at Fifth Third Bank as vice president for Community Affairs. She also worked in the not for profit industry as a community advocate for affordable housing, seniors, small business, and neighborhood revitalization efforts. She has a bachelor’s degree in corporate finance from Wayne State University, and a master’s degree in public and international affairs from the University of Pittsburgh.
She currently serves on the following boards: Bethune Cookman University Board of Trustees, the City of Orlando Affordable Housing Advisory Commission, the African American Chamber of Commerce, UNCF Local Advisory Board, BBIF, Community Development Committee Chair and the Florida Prosperity Partnership Board of Directors.
Her passion is working with not for profit organizations and providing financial education to empower others to obtain financial stability.
John E. Olsen
John Olsenis currently a Community Affairs Specialist with the FDIC in Montgomery,
Alabama. He began his FDIC career in Jackson, Mississippi during August 1985
and achieved commissioned bank examiner status in January 1989. John began
a supervisory compliance examiner career with the FDIC in Montgomery,
Alabama during July 1993 and served in this capacity until October 2002. He
joined the FDIC Community Affairs staff during 2002, and has been significantly
involved with promoting the FDIC’s Money Smart Program, economic inclusion,
and community development. Mr. Olsen has been responsible for organizing and
instructing over 85 FDIC Money Smart train-the- trainer workshops in Alabama
and Florida. John has various responsibilities with the FDIC and his job-related
activities have included serving as a technical advisor to: the Alabama Asset
Building Coalition, the Alabama Micro-Enterprise Network (AMEN), Bank On
Alabama, and the Alabama JumpStart Coalition (the JumpStart Coalition
promotes personal financial education for students in kindergarten through
college). He is also a member of the Florida Prosperity Partnership (an asset
building coalition). Mr. Olsen currently resides in Montgomery, Alabama, and
may be reached via e-mail at: email@example.com
Dr. David W. Rasmussen
Dr. David W. Rasmussen is the James H. Gapinski Professor of Economics at Florida State University. He joined the FSU faculty in 1968 as an assistant professor and was promoted to professor in 1979. He served as director of the Policy Sciences Program from 1991 to 1998 and directed the DeVoe L. Moore Center for the Study of Critical Issues of Government and Policy from 1998 to 2003. Dr. Rasmussen served as dean of the College of Social Science and Public Policy from 2003 to 2016. He received his Ph.D. from Washington University, St. Louis in 1969 and his B.A. from Earlham College in 1964.He is an award-winning teacher and has served as a consultant to domestic and international government agencies and nonprofit organizations. Dr. Rasmussen’s scholarly research and policy evaluation studies have addressed important public policy questions, including economics of inequality, urban and regional economic development, crime and substance abuse policy, and housing. He has written (or co-authored) five books and published more than 75 articles in leading professional journals. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the LeRoy Collins Institute, the Florida State University Panama Foundation, and the FSU International Programs Association.
Todd Romer is the founder of Young Money Media, Young Money University and author of the new book “YOUNG MONEY - A Powerful 5 Step Plan to Financial Success Now". From 2000 – 2009 nearly 7 million copies of Young Money magazine were distributed on 250+ college campuses across the U.S. Since 2010, Todd has spoken to thousands of millennials on 300+ campuses in 35 states as part of the Young Money LIVE! Financial Success Speaking Tour. As a result of saving, managing and investing money since high school and college Todd has created a simple yet highly effective 5 step money management and wealth creation plan for millennials of all economic and cultural backgrounds to begin living a life that fits their dreams. Todd graduated from the University of Dayton and lives in Cincinnati with his wife Jackie and their four children Jack, Luke, Alec and Mia.
Karina Ron career spans over a decade in non-profit management experience. Prior to joining Branches, Mrs. Ron honed her skills of empowering people to build assets as a senior financial coach at the New York City Mayor’s Office of Financial Empowerment and The Financial Clinic, two of the nation’s first financial development organizations of their kind. She also worked at Orphan’s Heart as director of international operations, where she cultivated US and international partnerships, promoting new collaborations and engaging a diverse volunteer base. Mrs. Ron holds a bachelor’s degree from Wellesley College, and a master’s in public policy and administration from Columbia University
Peter Rubenstein Vice President, Business Development, Solutions for Progress (SfP). As VP of Business Development, Peter is responsible for all of SfP’s financial health and wellness research and product development along with all of SfP’s sales, account management, training and marketing. Prior to joining SfP, Peter worked in a very diverse range of fields and positions from city government operations to manufacturing to non-profit management at an organization focused on asset building. Peter has a B.A. in Political Science and Public Policy from Syracuse University and a Master of Public Administration from New York University’s Wagner School of Public Service.
Mary "Jeannette" Schultz
Mary "Jeannette" Schultz is Project Manager for the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) in Denver, Colorado. She showcases her work through Financial Workshop Kits. You can visit this website at www.financialworskhopkits.org. Her hobbies include writing travel pieces from the Philippines, reading books written by Asian-American authors and cooking Filipino cuisine. She resides in Aurora, Colorado, with her husband and three children.
Donna Sines is regarded as an expert in organizational management and developing outcome-focused collaborations. She has over 25 years of extensive experience in the non-profit sector and is best known nationally for the creation and impact of Community Vision (established in 1995). She shares her knowledge related to civic engagement with numerous communities nationally as a consultant and conference speaker.
Taylor Spangler coordinates several family resource management programs through the University of Florida/IFAS Extension. She is the State Coordinator of the Florida Master Money Mentor program and the Campaign Coordinator for the Florida Saves Campaign. Taylor has led projects to bring Affordable Care Act outreach, VITA, and youth financial literacy to Floridians. Taylor earned her bachelors and masters degrees in the Family, Youth, and Community Sciences department at the University of Florida. Go Gators!
Jan Smith serves as the Manager of Outreach Services for the Office of Student Financial Assistance, Florida Department of Education. Her role on the Outreach Team facilitates the coordination of collateral materials, monthly publications, statistical reporting, and maintenance of the team’s financial literacy website (www.NavigatingYourFinancialFuture.org). Jan Smith resides in Tallahassee, FL.
Daniel Spikes, Ph.D.
Daniel Spikes is an Assistant Professor of Educational Leadership, Organizations and Policy at Iowa State University (ISU). His research interests focus on racial disparities in educational outcomes and the policies and practices of school districts, schools, and school leaders that serve to perpetuate and/or ameliorate these disparities. He also focuses on the professional development of adult learners on cultural proficiency and/or anti-racism and how this development contributes to the improvement of racial outcomes. He has delivered professional development sessions and talks throughout the country to various groups and organizations, including educational, religious, professional, and civic and service organizations. Prior to working at ISU, he served as a middle school English/Language Arts teacher and high school administrator in Lufkin, TX. In addition, he worked as an adjunct faculty member at Angelina Community College, as the Assistant Director for Pre-College Academic Readiness Programs, and as the District Site Coordinator for the federally funded Principalship Program at UT-Austin. He is the proud husband of Garisa Spikes and the proud father of three beautiful daughters: Madeline, Hannah, and Gabriella.
Jennifer Staley is a communications and operations specialist in the community and economic development department at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Prior to her current role, Staley developed financial education content and conducted outreach for the University of Colorado. Previously, she worked as director of the Regional Economic Information Network (REIN) and senior economic and financial education specialist in the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
Leigh Tivol has spent her entire career in the asset-building field, and has more than twenty years of policy and program experience in financial capability, affordable housing an d community development. She has worked in a range of settings, including direct service delivery, statewide policy advocacy, association services and technical assistance to community organizations, state government and, since 2006, at CFED.Currently, Leigh is CFED's Vice President for Strategy & Engagement, providing design, oversight, and functional direction for CFED’s progress against its strategic plan and its engagement with key partners and the field at large to accomplish its mission-related goals. She also oversees CFED’s efforts in network building and development, communications, and major events. Previously, Leigh served as CFED's Director of Savings & Financial Security, managing CFED's work in financial capability and matched savings for adults and children. Prior to joining CFED, Ms. Tivol was an advocate for community development and affordable housing policy in Indiana. She worked in the public and nonprofit sectors, focusing primarily on Individual Development Accounts (IDAs), homeownership education and counseling, housing trust funds and predatory mortgage lending. Ms. Tivol holds Bachelor's degrees in Sociology and French from Brown University, and a Master's in Public Affairs from Indiana University.
Nat Ware is a highly acclaimed entrepreneur, Oxford economist, and international development specialist. He is the Founder and CEO of 180 Degrees Consulting, the world's largest consultancy for non-profits and social enterprises, with offices in 33 countries and over 5000 consultants worldwide. Each year 180 Degrees works with over 800 hundreds of socially-conscious organizations to help them to operate more effectively and have a greater social impact (www.180dc.org). Nat is a Rhodes Scholar, Visiting Fellow at Princeton in Entrepreneurship and Economics, Goldman Sachs Global Leader, St Gallen Leader of Tomorrow, and World Economic Forum Global Shaper. He was the Top MBA Student at Oxford, received the Convocation Medal for Best All-Rounder at Sydney University (1/50,000 students), received the University Medal for Best Academic at Sydney University, and at the age of just 21 lectured the postgraduate course 'Innovation, Strategy and Global Business'. He thrives on adventure, having swum the English Channel and completed full Ironman Triathlons. He was also awarded Best Speech at the World Debating Championships (1/7200 speeches), and is an internationally renowned keynote speaker, and has given three groundbreaking TED talks related to happiness, hypocrisy, social impact, and entrepreneurship.
Jennifer West is a long-time advocate and previously served as owner of the California-based J. West Group, an independent marketing, public relations and political campaign consulting firm. She advocated on behalf of numerous organizations including educational institutions, civic groups, non-profit entities and business clients. Ms. West served as a spokesperson before numerous local planning commissions, City Councils, School Boards, County Board of Supervisors, the media and the public. She led award-winning campaigns that led to improved schools, roads and infrastructure. She is also a past chairwoman of the Board of Directors of her local chamber of commerce. Ms. West is currently on the Board of Directors for the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud. The recipient of numerous awards, Ms. West was appointed to her local Government Review Council, where she helped analyze legislation and its effects on businesses and the community. In addition to her business pursuits, Jennifer served on the board of directors of several local organizations including the Merced County Arts Council, the Merced County Economic Development Corporation, and the University Friends Circle (as founding president). In Tallahassee Ms. West is a volunteer Guardian ad Litem, advocating on behalf of abused, neglected or abandoned children in the court system. She also sits on the Board of Directors for Child Advocates II which supports the Second Judicial Circuit Guardian ad Litem Program.
Arlene J. Williams
Arlene J. Williams started her career in non-profit work in 2012 with the Corporation for National and Community Service as an AmeriCorps VISTA serving in Hawaii working with the Department of Education to build capacity for local high schools with regards to college and career readiness by mentoring and providing financial counseling to students. In 2014 Mrs. Williams joined the Branches team as an Associate Financial Coach and now serves as the VITA Coordinator. Mrs. Williams hold’s a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Florida International University.