Luther Brewster President Dr. Brewster is an Assistant Professor, Chief of the Division of Policy and Community Development, and Community Director for Green Family Foundation Neighborhood HELP, Department of Humanities, Health, and Society. His background is in community development; he has worked both in the private and public sectors. Since beginning his career in 2003, Dr. Brewster has held academic and research positions at the City University of New York and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan. He served as consultant for the expansion of the 125th Street business improvement district in Harlem, New York and the Arsenal, F.C. Emirates Stadium housing regeneration project in London, England. The focus of Dr. Brewster’s work is on the identification and correction of health risks created by programs and policies that typically are not viewed as having a relationship to health. He has a consistent track record of implementing grassroots strategies to address community concerns. In 2005, Dr. Brewster joined Florida International University (FIU) as faculty in the Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work. In March 2008, he became faculty at FIU Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine to lead the development of the community-based initiatives. As Founding Chief of the Division of Policy and Community Development and the Community Director of Green Family Foundation NeighborhoodHELP™ (Health Education Learning Program), Dr. Brewster oversees the development of a broad network of community partners and the recruitment and retention of households for the Green Family Foundation Medicine and Society community-based educational activities. He is co-founder of the Historic Overtown Public Health Empowerment (HOPE) Collaborative, Overtown, Florida. In July 2010, Dr. Brewster was a recipient of the prestigious Marshall Memorial Fellowship through the German Marshall Fund, which brings together Americans and Europeans to increase understanding and to build transatlantic networks among the political, media, business, and nonprofit communities.
Maria Cristina Barros Vice-President Maria was previously the Director of Marketing and Community Relations for WSCV Telemundo 51 since October of 2008. She joined WSCV in January 1985 as part of the team that put the station on the air in June of that year. Her responsibilities include management of the station’s community, public relations and programming, and director of Creative Services to oversee all aspects of on-air and off-air promotions and advertising. From April 2005 until October 2008 Maria Cristina also managed Community and Public Relations for WTVJ NBC6. In her current role, Maria Cristina’s primary responsibilities include providing the creative and strategic direction for marketing the station, as well as managing the stations’ partnerships, special events, public service campaigns, and media relations. She also oversees the NBC Universal Foundation’s grants in South Florida, which currently funds four programs for at-risk high school students in Miami Dade and Broward Counties and which to date has distributed $550,000 in foundation grants to local organizations. She also produces the station’s annual Liga Contra el Cancer telethon which during the last thirteen years has helped to raise a total of over $40 million dollars for this local organization which provides free cancer screenings and all types of treatments to uninsured victims of the disease. Prior to starting her career in broadcasting in 1985, Maria Cristina’s professional development had been in the public sector, having worked first as a Court Counselor in the Juvenile Court system, and subsequently serving as Director of Latin Affairs for Miami Dade County government for four years before joining WSCV. She is also the recipient of two Suncoast Emmy Awards and has held various leadership positions in community, arts, and business organizations throughout the years. She has a degree in Political Science and Urban Affairs from Jacksonville University and is married with one son.
Anthony "Tony" Brunson Treasurer Anthony “Tony” Brunson is the CEO of Anthony Brunson P.A. Tony began his career in 1978 with the big 4 accounting firm, Ernst & Young. Throughout his career, Tony has gained over three decades of public accounting experience. Prior to joining Sharpton Brunson & Company as a partner in 1985, Brunson was an audit manager of the Big 4 firm of Price Waterhouse, where he was responsible for managing and conducting audits and became a governmental industry expert. A native Miamian, Tony has professional affiliations with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants (FICPA), and Florida Government Finance Officers Association (FGOA). He has served as Proctor for FGOA certification programs and has been a contributing author to governmental accounting publications. Tony has gained extensive experience working with governmental, housing, transportation and the healthcare industries. Throughout his career Tony gained extensive experience performing economic impact studies and providing economic development consulting services to developers, governments, and community development organizations throughout South Florida, but with specific emphasis in the downtown Miami core. Because of his commitment to civic involvement, Tony has received numerous awards and accolades, including the Claude Pepper Award in the Volunteer category presented by United Home Care Services, the Award of Excellence from the Louie Bing Scholarship Fund, Inc., and Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce's "Up and Corners' Business Awards." Tony's community involvement has included the playful role of serving as Santa for underprivileged children, to advocating for serious causes such as domestic violence programs, to enhancing the quality of life for the elderly, as well as contributing to programs that positively impact the lives of youths. His educational background includes a B.S. degree from Jackson State University, Jackson, MS; Fellow at Dartmouth College (Minority Business Enterprise Program) in Hanover, NH. He recently opened his own firm, Anthony Brunson P.A, offering comprehensive CPA services to businesses and organizations throughout South Florida.
Ana Castilla Secretary Ana is the Vice President, Community Development Manager for the South Florida and Treasure Coast branch of TD Bank, America's most convenient bank®. she will manage community relationships and support regional market retail and commercial staff in developing and implementing responsive community development lending, service and investment to revitalize and stabilize low-and-moderate geographies and promote financial empowerment for individuals in South Florida and along the Treasure Coast. Ana joined the Federal Reserve in January 2000 and served as a commissioned bank examiner in addition to her CED responsibilities until 2010 when her department was assigned to the Research Division of the FRB Atlanta. She regularly speaks on community development initiatives and the role of financial institutions in community revitalization at events across the U.S., as well as to international audiences in support of the FRB Atlanta Americas Center. Previous to the Federal Reserve, she enjoyed a 12-year career in banking that included responsibilities in marketing, compliance and most recently community development lending. Ana regularly contributes articles and created publications for the FRB Atlanta and has also collaborated on FRB System research projects on subjects including remittances and concentrated poverty, among others. Born and raised in the Washington DC area, Ana has lived in Miami for the past 24 years and has been active in numerous community development and professional groups in South Florida. Fluent in Spanish, Ana has undertaken extensive outreach and research initiatives within the Hispanic community relative to home ownership, financial education, and micro-finance. Ana is also an adjunct professor for the Center for Financial Training at Miami-Dade College. She graduated from Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, CT with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication and obtained an MBA at Florida International University. Prier to joining TD Bank, Castilla served as the regional Community Development Senior Manager at the Miami branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
Vance A. Aloupis After practicing law in South Florida, Vance Aloupis joined The Children's Movement in June 2010, now serving as the organization's CEO. Having spoken across both the state and country on issues specific to the first five years in children’s lives, Vance has become a new face in the conversation around early childhood investment. A former Student Body President at the University of Miami, student trustee on the UM Board of Trustees, and a graduate of the University of Miami School of Law, Vance was the Judge Peter Palermo Fellow in the University of Miami Center for Ethics and Public Service's Street Law program creating and teaching curricula for and in juvenile detention centers in South Florida. As a proud alum of the University of Miami, Vance now serves a member of the UM Alumni Association Board of Directors. Prior to joining The Children’s Movement, Vance worked as both a civil litigator and with the Legal Services of Greater Miami’s Homeless Project. In 2012, Vance was appointed by Gov. Rick Scott to serve as a commissioner on the Governor's Commission on Community Service - also known as Volunteer Florida – which oversees much of the state’s AmeriCorps programs. A member of the board for the Miami Coalition for the Homeless and founding board member of the Awesome Foundation Miami, Vance is a graduate of Class VI of the Miami Fellows (the community’s most prestigious leadership development program) and Class IV of Connect Florida (a program focused on the next generation of statewide leaders). In late 2014, Vance – along with two colleagues – helped found the James Madison Institute’s Leaders Fellowship, a one-year leadership development program focused on fostering free market principles. A graduate of the Harvard Business School Executive Education program Strategic Perspectives in Non-Profit Management, Vance was selected as one of 90 young professionals from across the country to join in the first cohort of HBS’s 2015 Young American Leaders Program. In 2014, Vance was honored by The Bob Graham Center for Public Service at the University of Florida as the Young Floridian of the Year. And, in 2016, Vance was honored with the Emerging Leader Award from Florida International University’s Center for Leadership, the Ruth Shack Leadership Award from The Miami Foundation, and one of three “next generation” visionaries by The Miami Herald. Vance and his wife, Mariella, live in Aventura, Florida with their two daughters, Isabella and Aria.
Alison Austin Alison has had an extensive international career in ecotourism, community and youth development, with the Organization of American States (OAS). And most recently as CEO of Miami’s Belafonte TACOLCY Center, Austin listened to the needs of the community and implemented programs & services that positively impact youth and families. Her current passion is designing mindfulness programming for young adults. These programs are created for youth that are "aging out" of dependency or are homeless. The latest curriculum design; Finding Your Power, Purpose and Presence, is a personal development and well-being course that guides students on a journey towards self-awareness and workplace etiquette and learn to be comfortable in their truth. Austin studied broadcasting at Miami Dade College and was inducted into its Hall of Fame in 2007. She earned a B.A. in Communications from University of South Florida, a M.S. in Hospitality Management from Florida International University, a Certificate in Non-profit Leadership from the Harvard Business School and a MS Ed in Community & Social Change from the University of Miami. Austin currently serves as a consultant and Organizational Coach for non- profit organizations.
Tim Coffey Tim Coffey has 25 years of experience in the fields of public health, public policy, and social sciences administration, research, and evaluation. Having worked in a variety of health care, academic, and government settings, he has experience in basic and applied research activities in the area of behavioral health, as well as treatment and social services delivery. As Project Coordinator for the 11th Judicial Circuit Criminal Mental Health Project, Tim is responsible for the development, implementation, and evaluation of a variety of court-based projects and programs designed around the needs of people with serious mental illnesses and co-occurring substance use disorders involved in the criminal justice system. In addition, he works on the development of local, state, and national policy and legislative priorities. Before joining the 11th Judicial Circuit, Tim was employed in public and private health care and community mental health settings, as well as academic research settings. Tim is a graduate of Auburn University with a Master of Science degree in Clinical Psychology, with a concentration in Behavioral Pharmacology and Substance Abuse.
Lovely Examar Lovely grew up in Miami and was in the foster care system from the age of three until she aged out at eighteen years old. During that time she lived in more than 20 private homes and one group home. She is a Haitian-American, has five sisters, two brothers, sixteen nieces and nephews and enjoys spending time with all of them. Ms. Examar has attended Miami-Dade College and hopes to continue her studies. She dreams of becoming a Foster Parent in a group home for troubled youth. Lovely has spent some of her adult life in shelters and living on the streets of Miami when she couldn't afford a place to stay. Lovely has been working as a manager at Dunkin' Donuts for three years. She is a member of Zeta Beta Chi. Loves to help people, especially those who cannot speak for themselves. Fun fact, Lovely's a beginner surfer!
Hilda Fernandez Since April, 2017, Hilda M. Fernandez has served as the CEO of Camillus House, Inc., one of the largest non-profit providers of housing and services for homeless individuals in Miami-Dade County. As chief executive officer, Hilda Fernandez leads a complex system of care serving more than 12,500 men, women and children each year through over 40 programs and services. A passionate advocate for the homeless, Ms. Fernandez was the former executive director of the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust where she oversaw an annual budget of more than $49 million, allocated to over 80 providers of housing and services to the homeless throughout the county. More recently, Ms. Fernandez served as vice president for advancement, marketing and communications for St. Thomas University. She has also served as an assistant city manager in Miami Beach, executive director of the Citizens’ Independent Transportation Trust, and as director of the Miami-Dade County Communications Department. A graduate of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Miami Class of 2000, Ms. Fernandez served on the Miami Beach Employees Retirement Pension Board and has been a member of the Emergency Food and Shelter Program Board. She has also served as treasurer of the Florida Coalition for the Homeless and is a member of Miami Homes for All (formerly known as the Miami Coalition for the Homeless). Ms. Fernandez received a bachelor of arts in telecommunications from the University of Miami with minors in English and Sociology. She is a Certified Pension Trustee.
Ines Hernandez Ines Hernandez is driven by her passion and commitment to building inclusive and thriving communities. As the South Florida Market Manager for Citi Community Development, she is in the privileged position to develop and catalyze innovative initiatives that address the prosperity gap in South Florida. During her 15-year career in community development, Ines honed cross-sector relationships and skills in applied research, program development, collaborative facilitation, public policy formulation, and public affairs. In her prior role as Principal of Civica Consulting Group Inc., Ines advised municipalities, nonprofits, and philanthropies on how to use data to advance community and economic development initiatives. For instance, as lead consultant for The Social Compact (Washington, D.C), Ines used research data to show the untapped market potential of low-income neighborhoods. Working in concert with Emerging Markets, Inc. (Los Angeles, CA), she used this data to attract major financial institutions and supermarkets to these underserved areas. Finally, during her tenure as Communication Director of the American Red Cross of South Florida, she utilized story-telling techniques to inform and influence the public dialogue. She applies this skill in community development by crafting communication strategies that help to build the good will required to sustain and grow innovative programs.
Wayne A. Jones Major Wayne Anthony Jones has served with the Miami Beach Police Department since 1996 and is currently assigned to the Support Services Division. Major Jones discovered his passion for advocacy while supervising the department’s Community Affairs Office. During that time, he worked closely with the City’s homeless outreach team to develop a new process to address the needs of homeless residents on Miami Beach. The initiative included training community oriented officers in homeless outreach and partnering them with the City’s homeless outreach workers. The goal of the program was to reduce homeless arrests while simultaneously increasing the number of people accepting shelter and services. The initiative resulted in a meaningful reduction in the City’s homeless population. A licensed pilot, Major Jones holds an Associate of Science Degree in Aviation from Miami Dade College; dual Bachelor of Arts Degrees in Public Administration and Political Science from Florida Memorial University and a Master of Arts Degree in Public Administration from Florida International University.
Barbara Junge Barbara Junge is a civil trial attorney in Miami who has worked on homelessness prevention issues for decades. As a young legal services attorney Ms. Junge provided direct services to clients temporarily residing in shelters and those facing homelessness. She also advocated throughout Florida for more collaborative approaches to homelessness prevention efforts – and this continues to be her primary area of interest, with a specific focus on preventing homelessness among youth. Prior to establishing her own law firm, Ms. Junge litigated employment discrimination and disability rights cases as a partner in a small firm, and also represented a court-appointed receiver in cases seeking to recover millions of dollars lost due to professional negligence. While serving as an Assistant United States Attorney, Ms. Junge represented Everglades National Park and other federal agencies in real estate disputes, employment discrimination claims and other civil matters. She also clerked for the Honorable William M. Hoeveler, Senior United States District Judge, and has held several appointments to committees of The Florida Bar. Ms. Junge is a graduate of New College of Florida, New York University School of Law and the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. Ms. Junge has served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Togo, West Africa, and she currently serves as a liaison to the U. S. Department of State.
Benji Power Benji is the Operations Manager at McKenzie Construction, working on urban planning and real estate development. He has worked on a series of real estate development related projects in Miami, including working with the Goldman Properties Company on a historic preservation redevelopment toolkit for the Miami Downtown Development Authority and serving as a project manager with a retail developer. He has experience in real estate development, urban planning, and community development, with extensive knowledge of South Florida’s communities and their history. Benji was born in Santiago, Chile and has been a resident of Miami for 30 years. His undergraduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania explored the intersection of urban design and community organizing issues and he is a dual degree alum from MIT’s Masters in City Planning and Master of Science in Real Estate Development programs. Outside of work he is a member of the Miami Fellows program's Class 6 cohort, is one of the founders of the Miami chapter of the New Leaders Council, and is an active member in the ULI Southeast Florida District's Young Leaders group.
Kevin Probst Kevin, a staff attorney with Legal Services of Greater Miami, Inc., has served as co-director of the firm’s Homeless Legal Assistance Project since 2012 and currently directs the Children’s Advocacy Project as well. He joined Legal Services in 2009 as an Equal Justice Works Fellow and, for the first two years, spearheaded a medical-legal partnership for children. As a member of the Health and Income Maintenance Unit, Kevin represents clients in such areas as special education, disability, and Medicaid law. Prior to moving to Miami in 2003 to attend the University of Miami School Of Law, Kevin lived in Washington, D.C. where he pursued a graduate degree in special education and taught middle school students with disabilities. At Miami Law, Kevin furthered his commitment to public service through internships with the Children & Youth Law Clinic and Miami-Dade Public Defender’s Office, and a post-graduate fellowship with the school’s HOPE Public Interest Resource Center. During the years between completing his undergraduate studies at Goucher College in 1996 and pursuing his law degree, Kevin served as an AmeriCorps member with DC Public Allies and as a Peace Corps volunteer in Namibia.