Task Force Members

Task Force Co-Chairs

  • Michelle Diffenderfer
  • Patrick J. Franklin

Task Force Members

  • Maria Antuña
  • Rick Asnani
  • Alexandria Marie Ayala
  • Ana L. Bacas
  • Jennifer Jean Bell
  • Leontyne Brown
  • Sally Chester
  • Alexcia L. Cox
  • Julie Fisher Cummings
  • Jerry Deng
  • Daniel Eisinger
  • Bryce J. Graham
  • Chauncey Graham
  • William P. Jacobson
  • Faye Johnson
  • Dina Martinez-Rubio
  • Danita D. Nias
  • Juan J. Pagan
  • Gopal Rajegowda
  • George L. Soria
  • Tameca L. West
  • Dr. Alisha R. Winn
  • Bishop Wright

Task Force Co-Chairs

Michelle Diffenderfer

Michelle Diffenderfer

Lewis, Longman & Walker

Michelle Diffenderfer is the President of Lewis, Longman & Walker, an environmental, land use and governmental law firm. Michelle assists landowners, businesses and governments with the environmental and natural resource requirements for land development, infrastructure and restoration projects. Michelle is the Co-Chair of the Mayor’s Task Force for Racial and Ethnic Equality; Chair-Elect for American Bar Association’s Section on Environment, Energy Resources; Region 4 Membership Co-Chair for the American College of Environmental Lawyers; and the Chair of The Episcopal Church of Bethesda by the Sea’s Gratitude Team.

Michelle is a member of Leadership Florida, Leadership Palm Beach County, Executive Women of the Palm
Beaches, Palm Beach County Bar Association, Caribbean Bar Association and United Way, Women’s Leadership Council.  Michelle previously Chaired Girls II Women, Inc.; Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches; and Environmental and Land Use Law Section of the Florida Bar.

Michelle was born and raised in Jamaica, received her B.A., with honors from Brown University and earned her Juris Doctor, cum laude, from the University of Miami, School of Law. Michelle has been a resident of the City of West Palm Beach since 1995, when she moved here to begin her career with LLW.


Patrick Franklin

Patrick J. Franklin

President & CEO
Urban League of Palm Beach County

Patrick Franklin is a recognized visionary and vibrant community leader who successfully transferred and expanded corporate management, operational expertise, interpersonal skills and business acumen to the nonprofit industry. With a passion for uniting people and organizations to help others in need, Patrick is adept at expressing complex ideas clearly and concisely, gaining the trust and cultivating support with constituencies at all levels including: board of directors, funders, community partners, staff and clients.

Patrick is currently the President and CEO of the Urban League of Palm Beach County (ULPBC), a nonprofit affiliate of the National Urban League, serving in this capacity since 2002. He took the helm of what was then a fledgling affiliate, and through vision and leadership revitalized and restructured the organization to deliver on its mission of “Empowering Community and Changing Lives”.

Prior to joining the ULPBC, Patrick spent over 13 years with Motorola in Boynton Beach, FL in numerous management roles in the areas of community relations, program management, operations, production, engineering and quality

Patrick began his career as an Exploration Geophysicist with Shell Oil in New Orleans, LA. Patrick graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Physics from Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA. While working at Motorola he completed a Master’s of Business Administration from Florida International University in Miami, FL. Patrick has lived in Boca Raton, FL for over 32 years with his wife and entrepreneur Rachelle, and is the father of three children, Morgan, 28, Lena, 26 and Miles, 21.

West Palm Beach Mayor Keith A. James introduces the Task Force Co-Chairs.

Task Force Members

Photo of Maria Antuña

Maria Antuña

Executive Vice President, Business Development/Hispanic Affairs
Central Palm Beach Chamber of Commerce/Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Maria S. Antuña is the Executive Vice President of Business Development/Hispanic Affairs for the Central Palm Beach Chamber/Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Palm Beach County. In her role, Maria focuses her efforts, time and energy in helping the community by bringing education, health and business growth awareness along with providing the highest level of value and service to the Chamber members.

Maria was born in Matanzas, Cuba. Maria arrived to the USA in 1962 where her family settled in Clewiston, Florida. Maria is a 43 year veteran of banking where she had a successful banking/sales career. On April of 2014 Maria ended her banking career as Vice President of Small Business Banking for a major banking institution.

In November of 2015 Maria joined the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce as the Executive Director and quickly rose to CEO position. Maria quickly became a huge advocate for education, health and business growth within the community. Maria has been instrumental in the Hispanic Chamber receiving countless awards, proclamations, nominations, and accolades for its dedication to the community.  Maria has also been instrumental in growing the Hispanic Chamber membership rooster. Maria sits on numerous boards, committees and task force groups within the community advocating with a passion for education and health as well as bridging areas of concern for the Hispanic population within Palm Beach County’s Hispanic community. In 2016 Maria received “The Community Leadership Award” from the Hispanic Education Coalition and was nominated for the Women of Distinction Award. Maria has also been recognized by Senator Rick Scott (than Governor) as a Community Leader.

Rick Asnani

Rick Asnani

Founder and President
Cornerstone Solutions

Rick Asnani is the founder and president of Cornerstone Solutions, a national political consulting, community relations and public affairs firm. He has 25 years of campaign, strategic communications and issue management experience. Asnani has guided Fortune 100 companies and other corporate, trade association and campaign clients to organize and implement political, crisis management and grassroots advocacy campaigns. So far, he has worked in 37 states and in two foreign countries.  Asnani also serves as the Executive Director of the Florida Institute for Political Leadership, a non-partisan initiative to recruit and train leaders across the state who want to be appointed or run for elected office.

Asnani worked extensively statewide in Florida on campaigns before being recruited by a major Washington, DC trade group to serve as their Senior Political Field Director. For eight years he traveled to over 30 states running campaign schools where he trained over 1,000 candidates and worked on over 250 local, state and federal campaigns. Asnani’s successes include getting members of congress, governors, mayors, state legislators, judges, county, and city leaders elected.

Asnani is also a frequent guest lecturer at campaign training schools, women’s leadership and judicial workshop programs. He annually serves as a guest lecturer and judges the Advanced Campaigning class at Florida Atlantic University. He has been a regular speaker at the Campaigns and Elections Magazine seminars held annually in Washington, DC. Campaigns and Elections Magazine named Asnani as one of their “Rising Stars in Politics”.

Asnani is a member of the American Association of Political Consultants, a 2019 graduate of Leadership Florida (Class 37), serves as a Palm Beach Chamber Trustee and is a volunteer board member of several non-profit organizations. He lives in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Alexandria Ayala

Alexandria Ayala

Co-chair, Education & Workforce Development

School Board Member
Palm Beach County School District

Alexandria Ayala represents District 2 on the Palm Beach County School Board. District 2 encompasses central Palm Beach County and includes parts of West Palm Beach, Greenacres, Palm Springs, Cloud Lake, Lake Worth, Lake Clarke Shores, and Haverhill. Alexandria is honored to be the first Hispanic woman elected to the Palm Beach County School Board.

Alexandria has a decade of experience in community advocacy, government, and legislative affairs. She currently serves Palm Beach County as a Legislative Aide on our County Commission. In this capacity, Alexandria works to address community concerns, form successful partnerships, and support policy initiatives. She also served as a Legislative Aide in Tallahassee where she worked on constituent issues and supported efforts to craft policy that impacted Palm Beach County’s families, businesses and schools.

On the School Board, Alexandria is focused on ensuring every child has an opportunity to succeed, that policies work to close the student achievement gap, and that decisions are made transparently so parents, teachers and the community all have a voice in the decision-making process.

Alexandria was born in Puerto Rico and moved to Palm Beach County when she was 7 years old. She currently lives in the Village of Palm Springs and is a product of Palm Beach County District 2 public schools. She attended Palm Springs Elementary, Palm Springs Middle and graduated from John I. Leonard High School. She is a proud graduate of The University of Central Florida, where she studied Political Science and Journalism.

Ana Bacas

Ana L. Bacas

Community Language Facilitator
Palm Beach County School District

Born in Cuba, Ana Bacas has lived in Palm Beach County most of her life. She is the owner of Humberto’s Florist & Bridals. She enjoys volunteering in the community and has served as president of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Chairperson of the Hispanic Advisory Board. She currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Better Business Bureau. She is a member of Executives of the Palm Beaches and the Hispanic Human Resources. She also serves as Deacon of La Iglesia de Dios La Fama de Jesus.

Ana earned a degree in Business from Palm Beach State College as well as degree in Theology from Sonshine Bible Institute. She enjoys volunteering in the community and is a proud mother of a college student.

Photo of Leontyne Brown

Leontyne Brown

Co-Chair, Banking, Finance & Industry Sub-committee

Founder/Managing Partner

Leontyne Brown is a two-time Effie Award-winning advertising executive with a proven track record of achievement in integrated marketing and communications for many of the world’s most recognizable brands, including the Truth Anti-Tobacco Campaign, Coca Cola, Toyota USA, Nike and the Jordan Brand. Today, Leontyne is the Founder and Managing Partner of salt513, a boutique agency that combines consumer brand marketing with social justice advocacy. In addition to her successful marketing consultancy, Leontyne uses her voice to speak on issues of race, politics and culture and helps companies to turn dialogue into structured and strategic action.

Locally, Leontyne serves on the Executive Board of the Black Chamber of Commerce, The League of Women Voters, Women’s Chamber of PBC, Women’s Foundation Professional Development Committee and Racial Justice Steering Committee, PBC Organizing Against Racism Committee and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. In 2020, Leontyne was appointed to the PBC Commission on the Status of Women, and American Heart Association Health Equity Council.

Leontyne is a graduate of Florida A&M University, where she received a BS in Consumer Psychology, with a minor in Business Administration, and a BS in Sociology, with a minor in Cultural Anthropology. Leontyne also holds a Professional Certification in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell University, as well as training certificates from the Racial Equity Institute and the Everyday Democracy Institute.

Jennifer Bell

Jennifer Jean Bell

Assistant Director
Buccan Provisions Non-Profit Corporation

As Assistant Director of Buccan Provisions, Jennifer’s focus is on developing strong partnerships that enable the organization to serve those in need faster, better, and more efficiently. Her duties include donor management, product procurement and distribution, logistics, and partner agency outreach.

With more than 20 years in the high-end hospitality industry, including building and operating her own specialty culinary business, The Sugar Monkey, Jennifer brings exceptional problem solving, team building, and client relations skills to the organization. Jennifer has been actively involved in several charitable organizations over the years in the West Palm Beach community including Junior League of the Palm Beaches, Share our Strength, and Feeding South Florida.

Being a part of a non-profit organization that is so committed to providing hunger relief keeps her motivated each day, working towards effective and progressive solutions.

Photo of Sally Chester

Sally D. Chester, MS, RN, BC

Sally Chester is an experienced nursing and health care leader. She has a bachelors in nursing and a masters in health education. She has been a Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award Examiner in the health care sector and is a member of Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing. An expert in change management, Sally has participated on teams which championed several organizational and community change projects.

Sally is past president of Leadership Palm Beach County, and served on the steering committee of Leadership’s Ethics Initiative. She chaired Palm Healthcare Foundation’s nursing scholarship committee, Palm Beach Medical Society’s Heroes in Medicine, Potentials Charter School Board, and was medical operations director for The Palm Beach Marathon. Secretary of The homeless Coalition of Palm Beach County, she served on WPB’s Mayor James’ Transition Team and co-chaired the section addressing homelessness.

In addition to volunteer work, Sally states she is “the richly rewarded patient care manager for a spinal cord injury patient” – her husband, Don. She has helped train thirteen service dogs for children and adults with disabilities.

Photo of Alexcia Cox

Alexcia L. Cox

Co-Chair, Criminal Justice Subcommittee
Deputy Chief Assistant
Office of the State Attorney

A Palm Beach County native, Alexcia Cox returned after graduating from law school and began her career prosecuting domestic violence cases in the Office of the State Attorney for Florida’s Fifteenth Judicial Circuit in Palm Beach County. Today, she serves as Deputy Chief Assistant State Attorney and supervises prosecutors assigned to the County Court (misdemeanor) Division, Domestic Violence Unit, Conviction Review Unit and the North and South County satellite offices. As a passionate domestic violence prosecutor and influential leader, Alexcia uses her voice to educate the community about domestic violence and resources available to victims.

Alexcia is a devoted servant leader who remains actively involved in several professional and civic organizations. She currently serves on the board of directors for the Palm Beach County Chapter of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers and is a member of the Florida Bar Standing Committee on Professionalism, the National Black Prosecutors Association, the National Bar Association, the F. Malcom Cunningham, Sr. Bar Association, the Craig S. Barnard Inn of Court, the Palm Beach County Bar Association’s Professionalism Committee, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, and Leadership Florida Cornerstone Class 39. Additionally, Alexcia served as past board president of the YWCA of Palm Beach County which offers counseling, emergency shelter and transitional housing for victims of domestic violence.

Alexcia is an honors graduate of the University of Central Florida and the Florida State University College of Law. In 2019, she received the prestigious Justice Barbara Pariente Award for her commitment to promoting women in the Palm Beach County legal community and was named “Trailblazer of the Year” by Legacy South Florida Magazine.

Julie Fisher Cummings

Julie Fisher Cummings

Co-chair Education & Workforce Development
Fisher Cummings Holdings
Chair, Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties

Ms. Cummings advocates for responsible policies on health, education, and philanthropy on behalf of underserved and marginalized children and families. She co-founded and chairs the Lovelight Foundation, which focuses on domestic child sex trafficking, underserved women and girls and early childhood education and care. She served as the Executive Producer of I am Jane Doe, an award-winning documentary about domestic child sex trafficking. She has forged effective public-private partnerships and new funding networks in Florida and across the U.S. She is a co-founder of the Florida Women’s Funding Alliance, which has commissioned two research reports to drive policy change and enhance the quality of life for women and girls in the state of Florida: The Status of Women in Florida by County and The Status of Girls in Florida by County. Through the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Foundation (Vice Chair), she was the founding sponsor of the Southeastern Michigan Early Childhood Funders Collaborative.

Bridging academia, public service, and policy reform, she has dedicated over 40 years to civic leadership locally and nationally through her positions at: Corporation for National and Community Service (Presidential appointee), Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University (Board), and Children’s Hospital of Michigan (Board). In both Florida and Michigan she has held board and leadership positions with the United Way and with local Community Foundations (Southeastern Michigan, Palm Beach and Martin Counties), Council of Michigan Foundations, Women Moving Millions, Ms. Foundation, Jewish Teen Funders Network, the Jewish Women’s Foundations in Florida and Michigan, among others.

She is developing a graduate level course in Child Policy for Columbia University, Graduate School of Social Work. Previously, she served as an adjunct visiting professor in the Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami.

She has received honors and awards from numous organizations including the Cranbrook Schools, Palm Beach Atlantic University, Alternatives for Girls, Anti-Defamation League, Women’s Funding Network, Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin County, Ryan Licht Sang Foundation, Families First of Palm Beach County.

Photo of Jerry Deng

Jerry Deng

Bio forthcoming.

Daniel Eisinger

Daniel Eisinger

Co-Chair, Criminal Justice Subcommittee
Office of Public Defender Carey Haughwout
Legislative Aide, Palm Beach County

Daniel Eisinger is currently the Chief Assistant Public Defender in the 15 th Judicial Circuit. He supervises approximately 40 lawyers who handle felony cases. Daniel has been at the Public Defender’s office since December 2003. He has worked in the misdemeanor, felony, and capital divisions, where he tried a number of murder cases.

Daniel graduated from University of Florida with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 2000. He earned his Juris Doctor degree from University of Florida Levin College of Law in 2003. Daniel is a member of the Palm Beach Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and graduate of Leadership Palm Beach County. He is also a member of the Macarthur Safety and Justice Challenge Core Team, which is focused on reducing jail population and racial disparity in Palm Beach County.

Daniel lives in Royal Palm Beach with his wife, Amy, and three sons, Ethan, Micah, and Benjamin.

Photo of Bryce Graham

Prophet Bryce J. Graham

Youth Director
Florida Regional Director for the Central Florida Chapter National Action Network

Prophet Bryce Joseph Aaron Graham has been ministering & working faithfully in the American church since he was toddler at which time he received his first ministerial robe. In 2006, he was declared a Prophet of God and sent forth to fulfill the work and grow therein under the guidance of his pastor & the Holy Spirit.

Prophet Graham is the son of the Late Benjamin Newton & Michelle D. Graham. He is the youngest of three and has a pedigree of educators and ministers on both sides of his family. Despite his youth, Prophet Graham moves strongly in the realm of the prophetic ministry and ministers to the young and mature delivering a REAL and RELEVANT yet flawless message of hope, direction, and excellence.

As a recent High School graduate, Bryce Graham understands the importance of having a solid education and will be returning to Florida Memorial University to specialize in theology. It will be a perfect fit for the Honorary Doctorate in Divinity that he presently holds. Bryce has further aspirations that include political involvement within the Civil Rights movement. He currently holds the position of Florida Second Vice President for the National Action Network, Central Florida Chapter. Additionally, he is dedicated to eradicating gun violence within the Palm Beach county and surrounding areas.

When he is not teaching, and preaching Prophet Bryce can be found on the golf course, traveling or enjoying a good book. Prophet Bryce Graham has appeared on television shows and has graced pulpits and podiums alike from his home in Florida to California. Other appearances include Club 36, The Word Network and Trinity Broadcasting Network.

Chauncey Graham

Chauncey Graham

Senior Director of Outreach/Community Engagement
Florida Sugar Cane League

A Florida native, Chauncey Graham was born in Saint Lucie County and raised in Palm Beach County. He is a graduate of the Alexander W. Dreyfoos, Jr. School of the Arts and Florida Atlantic University.

He currently serves as an outreach director for our local agricultural community, connecting Palm Beach County’s diverse population to its agricultural history and importance. He began his professional life in state government as a staffer in the Florida House of Representatives working on a wide range of legislative research and policy initiatives. Most recently he served as Chief Legislative Aide to former Senator Jeff Clemens, rounding out more than a decade in the Florida Legislature, employed in various capacities in both the House and Senate.

Chauncey serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Palm Beach County Human Rights Council (PBCHRC), is the Board’s representative to the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office LGBT Liaison Unit, and also a member of the PBCHRC Charitable Foundation.  Chauncey also volunteers for Take Stock in Children as a program mentor and chairs the Civic Engagement and Advocacy Committee of the Urban League of Palm Beach County’s Young Professionals Network.

Chauncey is currently a member of Leadership Florida’s Connect Class 11 for the 2020-2021 session. He is a 2018 Fellow of New Leaders Council Palm Beach and a graduate of Leadership Central Palm Beach in 2019.

William P. Jacobson

William P. Jacobson

Co-Chair, Finance, Banking & Industry Sub-Committee
William P. Jacobson, P.A.

Bill Jacobson, a member in good standing with The Florida Bar, has lived and practiced law in Palm Beach County since 1973. He is a resident of the City of West Palm Beach and maintains his law office in downtown West Palm Beach. Mr. Jacobson, who started his legal career as an Assistant County Attorney for Palm Beach County, has concentrated his practice in the areas of real estate, zoning and land development, and governmental coordination. During his tenure at the County, Mr. Jacobson participated in shaping the future development of the area by working on land use matters, utility expansion projects and the preparation of ordinances and Special Acts for the governance of the County. His real estate practice, launched in 1976, encompasses counseling on large scale commercial and residential developments and simple single family home matters. He has also been a principal in the development and construction of office buildings, townhome and single-family projects in Florida and Colorado, urban in-fill projects, rental apartments, and low and moderate income housing projects through the use of conventional financing, taxable bond financing and tax-exempt bond financing. He is well versed in lending and banking and has represented several lending institutions. He is the Owner of Home Title America, Inc., a full-service title insurance and escrow company.

Mr. Jacobson has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches. He was recently re-appointed to theWest Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority, where served as its chairman for two (2) years. Mr. Jacobson previously served as chairman of the Palm Beach County Code Enforcement Board and as a member of various planning and zoning code review committees including the West Palm Beach Planning Board. Mr. Jacobson served as Chairperson of the Affordable Housing Task Force for the City of West Palm Beach under Mayor, and current US Representative, Lois Frankel and authored its downtown element. He assisted in the creation of The Housing Partnership, a non- profit entity dedicated to the creation of affordable housing within Palm Beach County.

Faye Johnson

Faye W. Johnson, MPA

City Administrator
City of West Palm Beach

Faye W. Johnson is the City Administrator for the City of West Palm Beach. In that capacity, she works hand-and-hand with the Mayor and oversees the City’s day-to-day operations as well as serving as the liaison to the City Commission. She was appointed to the position by Mayor James in January of 2020 after serving briefly as the Interim City Administrator. She joined the City in August of 2019 as an Assistant City Administrator. 

Before joining the City, Ms. Johnson worked as an Assistant County Administrator for Palm Beach County. She has also served as an Assistant County Administrator and County Administrator for St. Lucie County. Ms. Johnson’s background also includes serving as the Deputy Director of Economic Development for the City of Ft. Lauderdale and Director of Housing & Community Development for the City of West Palm Beach.

Faye has a Master of Public Administration degree from Howard University and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science degree from Bethune-Cookman University with Summa Cum Laude honors. She is an International City-County Manager Association (ICMA) Credentialed Manager and is on the Board of Directors for Leadership Palm Beach County. She is a native of West Palm Beach

Photo of Dina Rubio

Dina Martinez-Rubio

Don Ramon Restaurante Cubano

Dina Rubio migrated with her family from Nicaragua to West Palm Beach in 1981. In 1998, Dina and her husband acquired Don Ramon Restaurant on Dixie Highway. Working and living in the City of West Palm Beach, Dina learned the importance of getting involved in the community. She joined various nonprofit organizations, such as ASPIRA, HACER, American Cancer Society and Grandma’s Place. She has also participated in the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Palm Beach County as an Executive Board Member, and now serves as president of the Puerto Rican Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Southside Business Association.

Dina has participated in many City of West Palm Beach community studies, charrettes and discussions, including The Urban Land Institute Study, meetings regarding the City of West Palm Beach Golf Course meetings, and meetings of the Mayor’s First One Hundred Days Committee, among others.

Last year she co-founded the Latin Quarter West Palm Beach to serve the city’s growing Hispanic Community, and just recently co-founded The Latino Coalition of Palm Beach County.

Danita Nias

Danita D. Nias

Co-Chair, Housing & Real Estate Subcommittee
President & CEO
Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties

Danita D. Nias joined the Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties as president and CEO in March of 2021. The Community Foundation serves as a civic leader and grantmaker using local knowledge and expertise to improve the lives of all residents. Founded in 1972, the Foundation has assets over $200 million and has awarded more than $150 million in grants and academic scholarships. Before joining the Foundation, Nias served as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement and Chief Executive Officer of the FAU Foundation, Inc., at Florida Atlantic University (FAU). During her tenure, she helped catapult the university into a new era of excellence with record-breaking fundraising and spearheaded its second-ever comprehensive campaign (the first in 20 years).

Before joining FAU, Nias rose through the University of Florida (UF) ranks, the state’s flagship institution. Over five years, she was promoted from alumni relations to external affairs, and finally to Senior Associate Vice President for External Affairs. She was responsible for a portfolio of major donors and prospects. She directed the national volunteer strategy to support UF’s $3 billion campaign. 

From 1995 to 2011, Nias held numerous senior-level positions at the University of Maryland, including Assistant Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations during the university’s $1 billion campaign. She was Director of Athletics before pivoting her talents to fundraising. In addition to her higher education experience, Nias worked in the private industry for 14 years at global giants Xerox Corporation and Learning International.

Juan Pagan

Juan J. Pagan

Puerto Rican Hispanic Chamber of Commerce /
Florida Hispanic American Chamber of Commerce

Juan J. Pagan is an Executive Search consultant with Global Recruiters of West Palm Beach with over 30 years of experience in the pharmaceutical and medical devices industry with Eli Lilly and Company. He is also the President of the Puerto Rican Hispanic Chamber of Commerce in Palm Beach County and of the Florida Hispanic American Chamber of Commerce.

While working at Eli Lilly, Juan worked and lived in Puerto Rico, Philippines and the US. His cross-functional experiences within the USA and Latin America/International markets, which ranged from sales management and sales training to managed care leadership roles, marketing management and human resources.

Through his experience with Eli Lilly, Juan acquired expertise in the fields of neuroscience, diabetes, cardiology, men & women’s health and oncology. In his most recent position with Lilly as a manager in the Public Health Division with responsibility for the State of Florida and Puerto Rico, Juan partnered with Florida to ensure some degree of system-wide consistency in clinical decision making and funding for health care services. Most recently, Juan was involved in the Home Health Care industry promoting and coordinating their services for Medicare recipients in Palm Beach County to physicians of all specialties, nurses, nursing homes, assisted living facilities and hospitals.

Juan attended the University of Puerto Rico where he obtained a Bachelor degree in Business Administration and Psychology. He took courses toward an MBA before his promotion and transfer to the headquarters of Eli Lilly & Co.

Gopal Rajegowda

Gopal Rajegowda

Co-Chair, Health Subcommittee
Related Companies

Gopal Rajegowda is a partner at Related Southeast, the West Palm Beach-based division of Related Companies.

With more than 15 years of experience managing all aspects of mixed-use real estate acquisition and development, including financial analysis, deal structuring, partner negotiations, financing, and project and asset management, Mr. Rajegowda has been directly responsible for developing multiple mixed-use hospitality projects, including the W South Beach in Miami Beach and the Cosmopolitan Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.

In 2016, he led the development of the Hilton West Palm Beach, a public-private partnership with Palm Beach County. Currently, he is heading the re-imagination of Rosemary Square, formerly known as CityPlace, an experiential destination featuring shopping, dining, entertainment, and live-work-experience density with programmable public green spaces. He is also leading the development of 360 Rosemary, a Class-A office building, 575 Rosemary, a mixed-use tower that includes luxury residences and commercial space, both located in the Rosemary Square neighborhood, and One Flagler, a Class-A office building designed by world renowned architect David Childs located along the Downtown West Palm Beach waterfront.

Throughout his career, Mr. Rajegowda has earned a reputation for delivering results and has been passionate about developing successful destinations that bring forth the vitality of urban locales by combining world-class architecture, urban planning, hospitality, arts & culture, experiential retail, food and beverage and community.

Mr. Rajegowda holds an M.A. in Real Estate Development from Columbia University and a B.A. in Mathematics from Cornell University. He currently resides in West Palm Beach with his wife and is a board member of the Economic Council of Palm Beach County, Chamber of Commerce of The Palm Beaches, Cultural Council of Palm Beach County and the International Downtown Association.

George Soria

George L. Soria

Co-Chair, Health Subcommittee
Mr. Health Benefits
47 Million Reasons Healthcare Movement, South FL Permaculture Resource Center, Wellness & Optimum Care Center

George is the founder and President of Mr. Health Benefits Inc., a full service health benefits consultant company, and chairman of 47Million Reasons Healthcare Movement a 501C3 nonprofit organization. As a healthcare facilitator, George creates valuable health benefits solutions for community, businesses and organizations.

He is an advocate of good health and wellness, partnering with community and businesses leaders to advance the care and education in how to achieve good health. In order to achieve this he opened the South Florida Permaculture Resource Center, a agro-forestry farm for teaching children and young adults about nature using permaculture principals. In November, 2019 he open a preventive care facility called Wellness & Optimum Care Center, a project in Lauderdale Lakes, FL. The Center is the first of its kind in using both western and eastern philosophy teachings to answer the question, “how healthy are you?”

As a healthcare marketer for the past 45 years, George enjoys putting his clients in touch with the community and direct relevant changes needed to help solve health crisis in America. His dedication to creating quality and affordable health care centers and re-connecting every child to nature and good eating is the driving force behind 47MR model.

He also serves as board member of Tyrone Dye Foundation giving scholarship for inner city students who attend Iowa State University.

Photo of Tameka L. West

Tameca L. West

Assistant Chief
West Palm Beach Police Department

Tameca West began her law enforcement career with the West Palm Beach Police Department in 1995 as an Emergency Communications Operator in the Critical Services Bureau and became a sworn member four years later in February 1999.

As an officer she worked in road patrol, as well as the narcotics unit and served as a Field Training Officer. In 2006 She was promoted to the rank of sergeant where she served in the Patrol Division and Internal Affairs. In 2009 she was promoted to Lieutenant and served in the Patrol Division and Community Services. In 2014 she was promoted to the rank of Captain where she served in the Critical Services Bureau as well as the Patrol Division. In 2017 she was promoted to the rank of Assistant Chief where she currently supervised the Criminal Investigations Division, Special Investigations Division, Crime Scene and Evidence. Tameca has received the Departments Life Saving Medal and Certificates of Merit.

Tameca earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Palm Beach Atlantic University, a Master’s degree from Lynn University and is a Southern Police Institute Graduate. She also attended the Police Executive Research Forum.

Tameca is also a proud retired Army veteran.

Photo of Dr. Alisha Winn

Dr. Alisha R. Winn

Applied Cultural Anthropologist
Founder & Owner, Consider the Culture

Dr. Alisha R. Winn is an applied cultural anthropologist. She earned her PhD from the University of South Florida in Applied Anthropology. She is the owner and founder of Consider the Culture, a firm that incorporates anthropological knowledge to governmental, community, educational, and religious institutions on the social construction of race, cultural belief systems and practices, language, ethnographic research, and community engagement; helping individuals within and outside of the classroom gain an appreciation for anthropology’s usefulness and relevance today. Dr. Winn provides professional development in cultural anthropology for teachers, students, administrators, and institution leaders in Palm Beach County schools and cultural programs.  

She is an adjunct professor at Palm Beach Atlantic University’s School of Ministry, infusing community- engaged research and applied anthropology. Dr. Winn  has consulted and worked on several community-engaged projects as lead facilitator for Habitat for Humanity’s Historical Plaque Project, installation of the Historic Northwest Pioneer Banners, and educator for the Palm Beach County School System’s African and African American Summer Institute. She currently serves as consultant in the preservation and community building efforts for the City of West Palm Beach’s Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) in the Historic Northwest Rising Project and Project Director for the Palm Beach County African American Oral History Virtual Pilot Project.  

Photo of Bishop AJ Wright

Bishop Antoinne Wright

Co-Chair, Housing & Real Estate Subcommittee
Pastor & CEO
Manifest Church

Reared by Deacon and Sister Oliver Gilbert Sr. and empowered by the Reverend James and Doris Wright in South Florida, Pastor Wright continues to embrace God’s perfect will for both his life and ministry.

Pastor Wright’s began preaching the gospel in March 1990. Pastor of Music & Arts at the New Birth Baptist Church Cathedral of Faith International in North Miami, Florida, led by Bishop Victor T. Curry. He worked with Bishop Paul S. Morton Sr. and the people of Greater Saint Stephen Full Gospel Baptist Church of New Orleans, Louisiana as Pastor of Music Ministries. He served as an Adjunct Professor for the Dr. E.V. Hill Bible Institute at New Birth Baptist Church.

He’s a background vocalist and keyboard player for gospel artist Yolanda Adams on her Grammy award winning CD compilation titled, “The Experience.” Pastor Wright’s solo project with “A Tribe Called Judah”, titled “He Won’t Fail Ya”, was a gospel musical success. Pastor Wright produced and compiled original music for the ‘Gifts of Praise’ CD recorded by the New Birth Family Choir. He is also Founder, President and CEO of AJazz Productions Inc., a music/artist management, promotions and production entity. AJazz Productions also owns AJazz Music, its independent record label.

Pastor Wright became Founder/ Senior Pastor of the Shiloh Family Worship Center of West Palm Beach, Florida.

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