Members of the Board of Directors of the Clara White Mission embody the spirit of giving to an endeavor that is greater than one’s self. Generously giving of their time, talents and expertise, the members of our Board offer the guidance needed to continue serving the most pressing needs of our community. We welcome their service with profound appreciation to continue to provide daily feeding for the homeless, provide housing for the veterans and educational training programs.
Michelle Paul – is a Financial Advisor at the Raymond James in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. She helps advise clients on wealth accumulation, preservation and transfer through the creation of individually customized wealth management strategies utilizing a defined process. A native of Maumee, Ohio, she graduated from The University of Toledo where she studied Pre-Med and received her bachelor’s degree in Biology and Psychology. She lives in Ponte Vedra Beach with her beautiful family. She has been an active volunteer, prior to joining the board. She is a member of Celebration Church and involved with several local nonprofit organizations.
Dee has been an educator for over 20 years. Before she retired, she was the owner/founder of Students First In-Home Tutoring, that focused on Algebra, Geometry and Statistics. She has expertise in developing lesson plans, performance testing and all aspects of business management including hiring qualified tutors and marketing. Her experience includes teaching for the Duval County School Board before she opened her business. She has been a volunteer for the Clara White Mission for over 20 years. She enjoys spending time with her family and her twin goddaughters. Dee has an AA in General Education from Miami-Dade Community College and a BA in Psychology from University of North Florida.
Joe earned a Bachelor of Business Administration, from the University of Cincinnati in the area of Business Management and a Master’s in Finance. He is a retired Public Administrator for the City of Jacksonville. Currently, he is a consultant to the City of Jacksonville working in the area of Economic Development, directing the OED’s small business development efforts. He helps provide incentive packages that help facilitate the expansion and relocation of business to the Jacksonville area. These efforts create new jobs and provide private capital investment for the City of Jacksonville. He enjoys playing golf.
CITY OF JACKSONVILLE
Dinah Coleman-Mason – brings more than 15 years’ experience as the Project Manager/Special Projects Manager for Public Works, City of Jacksonville. She is responsible for establishing organizational objectives, procedures, policies and goals to optimize resources and achieve desired results for the Public Works Department. She conducts organizational reviews to identify strengths, weaknesses and operational effectiveness and the Planner for Local Mitigation Strategies and the Departments’ Emergency Management Coordinator. She completed her Psychology internship at the Clara White Mission and continued to volunteer after her internship. She is an Army veteran. She is the Owner of Dinahsty’s Mediation and Consulting Services. She received her M.A., in Counseling, Webster University; B.A., Psychology, Columbia College, Certified Family Law Mediator and Project Management Certificate, PMP Institute. She enjoys spending time with her family and playing golf.
JP MORGAN CHASE
Stephanie Fields – is a Sales Support Manager for JP Morgan Chase and has over 15 years in the mortgage industry. She has a strong skillset in “big picture” vision; deconstructing current processes and then reconstructing to meet the vision and accomplish the targeted objectives. As a Jacksonville native she is passionate about serving and making a difference in her community. She has a unique perspective to utilizing the power of marketing and Social Media to help build relationships and rally the community together. Stephanie is a member of Celebration Church where she serves on the Intercessory Prayer and Production teams.
Tasha Cathey – is an energetic accomplished professional with hands on experience in organizational strategies, public administration as well as an experienced facilitator in contract management and training. Her strong skillsets are Strategic planning, including customizing planning process, and specific strategies to address each issue, resulting in a written relevant, realistic and flexible Strategic Plan. She has been a volunteer with the Clara White Mission as a corporate sponsor for special events. She recently graduated with her Master’s in Human Resource. She enjoys spending time with her family and making a difference in the community.
VYSTAR CREDIT UNION
Robert Davis – is the Chief Human Resources Officer at Vystar Credit Union. He has worked in the Human Resources field for more than thirty-five years. He has held officer level positions in the insurance industry and the financial industry. He has a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Economics from North Park University and a M.B.A in Business Administration and Marketing from Roosevelt University. He is also a Certified Compensation Professional (CCP), holds certifications in the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM), and served as President of the Executive Committee for the Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA) Human Resources and Organizational Development Council. Hobbies are Traveling, Fishing and Music.
FLORIDA STATE COLLEGE: JACKSONVILLE
Sabrina Edwards – Dr. Edwards is the Director for Program Development at Florida State College at Jacksonville. She is responsible for the Talent Search Federal TRIO Programs and Training Opportunity Grant Online & Workforce Education. She ensures program compliance with the US Department of Education to receive continuous funds and providing pre-college information to first-generation and low-income students at 4 target secondary schools within Duval County Public Schools. She develops policies and procedures for management of instructional initiatives. She has over 22 years’ experience in education and has volunteered for the Clara White Mission for 18 years. She has a Doctorate of Education, Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL Organizational Management/Higher Education, Post Graduate Studies Harvard Graduate School of Education Accepted Fall 2019, Cambridge, Massachusetts, Women in Education Leadership. She is the President, NCNW and a member of Delta Sigma Theta. She is a football mom to her son Larry.
Philip Elson II
Philip Elson II – is self-employed. He has over 30 years of experience providing environmental risk management, contamination assessment and remediation, and environmental consulting services. He specializes in developing and implementing environmental management programs associated with large-scale land acquisition and Brownfields redevelopment projects.
He has served as chairman of the City of Jacksonville Enterprise and Empowerment Zone Board and the Jacksonville Brownfields Coalition. Previously, he managed a FDEP petroleum cleanup contract for the Bureau of Waste Cleanup and served as an Environmental Specialist working with hazardous, industrial and solid waste enforcement issues for the FDEP’s Southeast Florida District. He received his BS, Biology, from Illinois State University. He is a member of the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP).
THE HOME DEPOT
Jeff Ivan, – has been employed with Home Depot/Home Depot Pro for over 13 years, as the Director of National Accounts-Specialty Trades. He has over 30 years in national sales, distribution, direct marketing and management strategies experience. In his career he has had an opportunity to work in the music industry with Faith based online communications for animated movies and videos, and the Regional Director of EMI Music, where he promoted and developed marketing in 14 Southern states with selling and marketing to general retailers generating $56M in billing. He and his staff have been a partner with the Clara White Mission for several years. They were one of the sponsors for the Beaver Street Veterans Villas. Jeff has a Bachelor of Arts in Telecommunications, Minor in Marketing – Texas Tech University
PASTOR: GATEWAY TO HEAVEN CHURCH
Carlton Jones – is the Pastor of Gateway to Heaven Christian Center. He has been actively involved, since moving to Jacksonville in the late 1980’s. He has served on several community boards including the Chamber of Commerce, built and invested in economic development locally and nationally. He has an extensive background in Construction. He is a General Contractor, experienced in Affordable Housing and Community Development. He has a bachelor’s degree in city and regional planning and architectural engineering from the University of the District of Columbia. He has a master’s degree in theology and an honorary doctorate degree in divinity from ZOE University. He is married to Barbara Jones and they have four children. He enjoys attending church, playing golf and traveling.
Cindy Laquidara – is a partner with Akerman. Her practice serves municipal authorities, private corporation, general commercial litigation, energy related matters in dispute resolutions pertaining to bid disputes, land use, transportation, contracts, First Amendment, government and utility contracting, environmental and government affairs. She is the former General Counsel for the City of Jacksonville and is Board Certified by the Florida Bar, Massachusetts and New York. She has received many awards for her pro-bono work and advocacy in our community. She has a J.D., Boston College of Law and a B.A., from the University of Massachusetts.
VP CITI GROUP
Kris Mattson – is a Vice President with Citi Group. Kris is an avid biker and also holds a black belt certification. Kris brings her knowledge of banking, tracking and reporting of credit cards and mortgages. She has been a more than visible part of Clara White Mission for over 20 years. She organizes and oversees 50 or more volunteers which allows our events to be successful.
Jason Mitchell – Senior Vice President and Co-Lead, Consumer Learning and Development at Citi. Jason has over 15 years of experience in corporate training. He is responsible for management, direction, and strategy for training, development, and performance management across Citi’s consumer lines of business – branded credit cards, private label cards, retail banking, commercial bank, and mortgage. He provides direct learning advisory support / services to Chief Operating Officers, senior and executive leaders in the organization. Jason is a member of Bartram Trail Rotary Club. He received his BS and MBA from Rollins College in Winter Park, FL in Business, Marketing, and International Studies. His hobbies include reading, time with the family, a good movie, pinball and 80s arcade games.
VETERANS HEALTH SYSTEMS: N FL | S GA
Ephraim Riggins- is a Clinical Pharmacy Specialist with the Veterans Health Systems North Florida/South Georgia. He is a Life Member of Florida A & M University National Alumni Association. He has a BS Degree in Pharmacy, Doctor of Pharmacy Degree. He has held many community leadership positions on boards; he is the Past President of the 1st Coast Pharmacy, Board Member of the National Rattler Club and Vice President of Kappa Psi Fraternity, and he is married to Dr. Victoria Riggins and has 3 children.
AQUA GULF EXPRESS
Kenny Santos – is the Vice President of LCL/LTL at Aqua Gulf Xpress. Kenny has over 15 years of experience in Logistics, Sales, Operations and Supply Chain. His key areas of expertise include Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Performance Improvement training and reduction of waste and variations. He is a Graduate from University of Puerto Rico Business Administration. Kenny beat the odds of a brain aneurism and fought his way to a full recovery. He is generous with his time and spirit in both business and charitable contributions. He is a member of the Puerto Rico Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Kenny is a recipient of the Maritime Person of the Year 2018 Southeast Florida Region “Maria Relief” Propeller Club.
Bracy Taylor- Bracy Taylor is employed with North Florida Sales Wholesaler of Anheuser-Busch, Key Account Manager for North Florida Sales. He has been in sales and marketing with Budweiser for over 30 years. His responsibilities include sales for monitoring groceries stores, CVS Pharmacy and several other retailers in the North Florida area. In addition to ensuring that Anheuser-Busch is engaged in the urban market by partnering to support diversity in the community. He has been the recipient of numerous awards over the years, which includes several Sales and Marketing Certificates in St. Louis, Missouri, and the first African American Supervisor of the Year for Anheuser Busch. Bracy is an active member of the St. Joseph Baptist Church of Jacksonville, where he is a minister. He is actively involved with several community organizations. He received an Associate Science Degree in Drafting and Technology Design from Florida State College at Jacksonville. He enjoys spending time with his grandkids, golf, billiards, football, and landscaping. He is the father of two daughters, Jamica Latoya, Lauren NiCole.
SELF-EMPLOYED: SUMMIT - CENTER FOR RESOURCES & ORGANIZATIONAL DEVELOPMENT, LLC.
Thomas Waters – After retiring from a 30-year career in local government, he developed SUMMIT- Center for Resources and Organizational Development, LLC. A resource provider to help empower and advance community economic development initiatives. Throughout the years, he has always supported the Mission financially and volunteered his personal commitment to advocating for and supporting proven local providers of affordable housing, services for the homeless and efforts to assist disadvantaged and underserved citizens in Jacksonville. Clara White Mission allows him the opportunity to serve and continue the legacy of Dr. Eartha M. M. White, an organization that does a lot of good and is visible. Bachelor of Arts – Architectural and Construction Engineering Technology– FAMU – (One year major in Civil Engineering); HUD Community Builders Fellowship, Harvard University.
JAMES E. WESLEY
FL DEPT. OF AGRI & CONSUMER SERVICES
James E. Wesley – has been employed by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Bureau of Inspection and Incident Response for over 13 years. He has extensive experience in agriculture data collection and as a wildlife biologist. He is a graduate of Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Alabama, with a B.S Biology; M.S. Environmental Science. Proficient in multiple computer software applications (i.e. MS word, excel, power point, etc.). His Community Service includes: Volunteer youth basketball coach, and President of the 501(c)(3) Northeast Florida Warriors youth basketball program (2007-present), Certified Volunteer for P.A.L. (Police Athletic League) of Florida, an Academic tutor and mentor in the community. He is married to Cortney Wesley.
KIDS HOPE ALLIANCE
Travis Williams – Travis Williams is a proud native of Jacksonville, FL, where he resides with his wife and their children. With a track record of success for delivering results; Travis professionally brings with him years of experience in the art of relationship building, articulating value, closing deals and the skill of execution. From building a financial services practice from the ground up, to consulting with a global nonprofit on building their local brand; Travis has seen his desire to serve first, turn into the ability to lead individuals, and organizations, towards their goals. He currently serves as Senior Director of Communications at the Kids Hope Alliance.
Travis serves the community of Jacksonville through local board work and volunteering, primarily in areas around youth mentorship, services benefiting the less privileged and religious education. His service also extends nationally, as he’s been called upon to help lead initiatives around Diversity and Inclusion in the workplace.
Travis can often be found enjoying time with his extensive extended family/friends in Jacksonville, rooting on the Jacksonville Jaguars at a home game or faithfully serving at/with his local church.