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Nereia Cormier, Director of Strategic Planning, Hillsborough County Property Appraiser
Nereia Cormier was born in Miami and lived in various parts of Florida and California until her father was accepted to the University of South Florida’s School of Medicine in 1993. Deciding to plant her own roots in Tampa, Nereia graduated from the University of South Florida in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in Social Science Education. She was then hired by the Social Studies Department at HB Plant High School and taught AP World History, Law Studies, Court Procedures, and American Government Honors, and was the head coach of the varsity cheerleading team. While maintaining her teaching and coaching positions, Nereia accepted the positions as Campaign Manager for the Jason Wilson for Tampa City Council, District 3 campaign, and Field Coordinator for the Bob Henriquez for Hillsborough County Property Appraiser campaign.
As a result of her outreach experience with several campaigns and community projects, as well as her ability to coordinate and conduct employee trainings, Mr. Henriquez asked Nereia to join the Hillsborough County Property Appraiser’s office as Director of Community Relations when he was sworn into office on January 8, 2013. Having taken the lead on the organization’s strategic planning process, Nereia has since been promoted to Director of Strategic Planning and Development. Nereia is also Secretary of the City of Tampa’s Equal Business Opportunity Advisory Council and Chair of the Membership Committee for the Hillsborough County Democratic Executive Committee.
Additionally, she is the founder of the Hillsborough County Local Government Management High School Internship Program, which began its inaugural year this summer. During the course of the six week program, four students from various high schools and backgrounds will attend local government meetings, tour local government agencies, and present their final, high-level projects to the Board of County Commissioners in August. The interns will receive a scholarship for the successful completion of the program. Nereia’s hobbies and interests include triathlons, scuba diving, boating, and participating in local political and community activities.
Sam Gibbons, Deli Associate, Public
I am an FSU alumni with a BS in Economics and Public Policy and disappointed with how the 113th Congress has chosen to react to our ongoing domestic and foreign problems.
Lorena Hardwick, Legislative Aide, City of Tampa
Lorena has lived in Tampa for the last twenty three years. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Master of Arts in Organizational Management. She has worked in both the nonprofit and government sectors for the last thirteen years, and has enjoyed her varied roles in nonprofit management, community relations, lobbying and government affairs. She currently works as the Legislative Aide to Councilman Mike Suarez, District 1 (city wide). She has extensive volunteer experience through her work with Hands on Tampa Bay (now Hands on Suncoast) and has over the years cherished her role as a volunteer for the Humane Society and Big Sister for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay.
As the Hispanic outreach person under Mayor Iorio’s administration she had the opportunity to serve organizations like the West Tampa Chamber of Commerce, Hispanic Professional WomanÕs Association, the Latino Coalition of Tampa Bay (Vice Chair), Hispanic Young Professionals and Entrepreneurs (Board Member) and the Hispanic Alliance of Tampa. She was recently appointed to serve on Hillsborough CountyÕs Diversity Council and last year joined the Courtney Campbell Advisory Committee. Lorena hopes to continue finding ways to give back to the community as well as opportunities for personal and professional enrichment.
Mary Scott Hardwick, Executive Assistant, Pinellas County
Mary Scott Hardwick currently works as the Executive Assistant to Pinellas County Commissioner Janet C. Long. Immediately prior to her current position, she managed Commissioner Long’s successful countywide campaign for the County Commission.
Mary Scott has worked on campaigns in three states on the local, state and federal level with positions ranging from intern to management. In addition to electoral campaigns, she has worked with the Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus and as an organizer with NARAL Pro-Choice North Carolina. Mary Scott has completed electoral training programs with both EMILY’s List and Ruth’s List Florida.
Mary Scott grew up outside of Boston, Massachusetts. She graduated from Wake Forest University with a B.A. in Political Science and a minor in Women and Gender Studies. While attending Wake Forest she was involved in numerous extracurricular activities including leadership roles in Project Pumpkin, Wake ForestÍs largest campus-wide service event; the Panhellenic Breast Cancer Fashion show and her sorority, Phi Mu. She is an active alumna member of Phi Mu. Mary Scott currently resides just outside of Clearwater.
Monica Harris, Of Counsel, Jackson Lewis PC
Monica Williams Harris is Of Counsel in the Tampa, Florida office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Ms. Harris’ practice includes defending and advising management in employment related disputes including, but not limited to, allegations of discrimination, retaliation, harassment, wrongful discharge, negligent hiring and other employment torts. She also frequently defends clients in actions brought under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act and provides advice and counsel to clients regarding structural accessibility issues. She represents clients in federal and state courts and before local, state and federal government agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. She also has represented clients in garnishment actions.
Ms. Harris has been recognized by Florida Super Lawyers Magazine as a Rising Star for the years 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013. She is a frequent speaker before business and employer associations, as well as several community and civil organizations. Ms. Harris is a member of the Florida Bar and is admitted to practice before the U.S. District Courts for the Northern, Middle and Southern Districts of Florida.
Ms. Harris received her B.S. in Business Administration from the Florida A&M University’s School of Business and Industry and her J.D. from the University of Florida Levin College of Law. Ms. Harris is a former federal judicial law clerk to the Honorable James S. Moody, Jr., United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida.
Timothy Heberlein, Political Director, Florida Consumer Action Network
Tim Heberlein is the Political Director for the Florida Consumer Action Network, and organizes his community to advocate for economic and social justice. His activism has focused on grassroots organizing and field campaigning for progressive issues and candidates. He has been active in the Tampa Bay political community since 2006 and was recently named one of the ñ30 Under 30î from Saintpetersblog.
Heberlein has mobilized thousands of activists and voters around progressive campaigns, and trained many into progressive leadership in the Tampa Bay area. He has trained with the Capital Leadership Academy, Awake the State and LegiCamp, and been a panelist on several conference and televised forums. He will also be a speaker for a national webinar in January focusing on assisting advocacy organizations in preparing for transit referendums.
Heberlein has strong communications experience with elected officials, the media, FCANs members, and has been quoted and featured in several national, state and regional publications and media. He has also trained hundreds in media engagement and message development.
Heberlein is also active in his community, serving as the Vice Chair of the Hillsborough Democratic Party, a Disaster Action Team Leader for the American Red Cross since 2006, and as a member of the Human Relations Committee for Hillsborough County. He is the son of two military service members and attended public schools all over the world. His wife, Caitlin, is a teacher with Hillsborough County Public Schools. They are expecting their first child, Charles, in March.
Angela Horvath, Management Methods Analyst, City of Saint Petersburg
I am a research psychologist with thirteen years experience working in community research, government, social services, and public health. My passions revolve around social justice and advocating for marginalized groups. After receiving an undergraduate degree in Psychology from Saint Mary’s College in Notre Dame Indiana, I served as an AmeriCorps volunteer in Saint Petersburg Florida, teaching at a school for at-risk youth. I went on to receive a Ph.D. in Applied Psychology from Southern Illinois University, graduating summa cum laude.
While working for the Florida Department of Health, I was the evaluator for a federally funded grant aimed at reducing Black infant mortality rates in Saint Petersburg. In this position, I implemented collaborative, client-focused methodologies to provide valid performance measurement. In my current position as a Management Analyst with the City of Saint Petersburg, I work to ensure maximum organizational efficiency and effectiveness.
As a graduate of the 2012 Council of Neighborhood Associations Leadership Course, I became a mentor for the 2013 class. I currently serve as a Board Member of Saint Pete Together, a group dedicated to advocating against racism and promoting education, dialogue, and respect regarding diversity. I am also a mentor at a local high school.
Victoria Kirby, Florida State Director, Organizing for Action (OFA)
Victoria Diane Kirby is the state coordinator for Organizing for Action (OFA) Florida, the non-profit formed to support President Barack Obama’s legislative agenda. She served as the first openly gay elected member of the Board of Trustees of Howard University, where she graduated with a B.A. in Communication & Culture and a MasterÕs in Public Administration. While at Howard she worked as an assistant to the president of the university to oversee transformative change, created HowardÕs social media initiative and started work on a resource center for the university’s LGBT student group.
Ms. Kirby has served as a member of the Human Rights CampaignÕs Diversity & Inclusion Council and as a board member for the Center for Black Equity and currently serves on the National Black Justice Coalition Leadership and Advisory Council, and is a board member for the Next Generational Leadership Foundation. She was one of four recipients of the 2011 Metro Weekly Next Generation awards and was cited as one of FloridaÕs Top 30 under 30 political leaders in Florida by one of the Washington PostÕs top political blogs in the country; SaintPetersblog. She recently served as the West Central Florida Regional Field Director for Organizing for America, President Obama’s 2012 election campaign where she was responsible for leading 29 staff members and over 2,000 volunteers to win the election for the President as well as state and local progressive candidates.
Prior to work in politics, she pioneered research on the needs for LGBT resource centers on HBCU campuses that was published in the inaugural issue of the LGBTQ Policy Journal at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government that addressed youth suicide and homelessness among students of color. She spent four years working in corporate America at the McGraw-Hill Companies in Washington DC while working part time at a couple of non-profits that provided free college preparation workshops to low-income middle and high school students. She has been featured on CNN, MSNBCÕs Today Show, FOX, the Washington Post and a number of other national and international media outlets. A couple of fun facts about Ms. Kirby is that she was invited by First Lady Michelle Obama to be her guest at President ObamaÕs first joint address to Congress and has had lunch with President Obama.
She and her longtime partner live in Brandon with their 4 year old beagle.
Stephen Liverpool, Attorney, Hill Ward Henderson
Stephen is an attorney in the land use and real estate practice groups of the law firm of Hill Ward Henderson. His practice primarily involves representing clients in all phases of commercial real estate development, including leasing, investment, financing, purchase and sale transactions, and a wide variety of land use matters.
During law school at the University of Florida, Stephen was selected to work in the University of Florida’s Conservation Clinic where he gained significant experience in Florida state rulemaking, rule waivers and variances, judicial review of agency actions, and regulatory and legislative matters. In 2007, he was awarded a National Thurgood Marshall Fellowship from the Federal Council on Legal Education Opportunity. Stephen also had the opportunity during law school to serve as the President and Treasurer of Florida Blue Key.
Stephen has always had a passion for service and dedication to volunteering in his community. Outside of the office, he is involved with the Fishing Lawyers Association, which aims to use the abilities of law students, attorneys, and judges to make a difference in the local fishing community. Recently, he was appointed by the Tampa City Council to serve as a member of its Budget Advisory Committee. In addition, Stephen was recently recognized as an “”Up & Comer”" by the Tampa Bay Business Journal.
Outside of the office, Stephen enjoys spending his time enjoying the arts with his wife Misha, fishing the coastal waters of Florida, playing billiards, and supporting the University of Florida.
Caitlyn Miller, Grassroots Outreach Manager, Planned Parenthood of Southwest & Central Florida
Caitlyn Miller is the Grassroots Outreach Manager for Planned Parenthood of Southwest & Central Florida, which provides reproductive and general health services in 15 counties in the greater Tampa Bay and Southwest Florida areas. Caitlyn oversees the building of Planned Parenthood advocates, Planned Parenthood college chapters, and local Planned Parenthood digital media properties, such as the Feronia Project, a sexual health blog that has received more than 250,000 visits since its launch in late 2011.
Caitlyn also served on the 2012 Florida campaign team for the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates working against Amendment 6, which was handily defeated in the 2012 election and recognized by the Planned Parenthood Federation of America for its excellence. She has been asked to spoken at national Planned Parenthood conferences on analytics and social media as well as at local events about the prospects of online marketing and development.
Prior to joining Planned Parenthood, Caitlyn worked for New College of Florida in Sarasota, FL and Oxford University Press in Oxford, England, where she worked on the digital editions of the Oxford English Dictionary, the United KingdomÍs recognized Dictionary of National Biography, and helped in the launch of Oxford Biblical Studies Online.
Caitlyn serves on the boards and committees of several community non-profits, including the Sarasota Pops Orchestra, the Community Alliance of Sarasota County, and Healthy Start of Sarasota County. She is also a member of the Sarasota Young Professionals Group and the Association of Fundraising Professionals Southwest Florida chapter.
Caitlyn is a graduate of New College of Florida, Florida’s public honors college, and received her masterÍs degree from Oxford Brookes University in England. She and her husband Kevin live in sunny Sarasota, Florida, which is also her hometown.
Sarah Ogdie, Program Specialist, Community Tampa Bay
Sarah is a feminist, activist and pacifist working to end all forms of discrimination. She fuels her passion for social justice as a facilitator, organizer, and youth development professional with strong diversity education experience. She received both her Bachelor and Master of Social Work from Florida State University.
Sarah joined Community Tampa Bay’s programming department in 2010, having been a program participant and committed volunteer since 2002. Sarah works to empower young people to promote dialogue and cross-cultural interactions, both locally and internationally through diversity workshops, experiential learning initiatives, and residential programming for diverse audiences. She trained ex-child soldiers in Ghana on issues of gender equality. She has also selected and trained a team of volunteers in partnering with a Rwandan university to create a service learning program. Since 2004, she has served as a counselor and co-director during Community Tampa BayÕs nationally recognized ANYTOWN program, an intensive experience for high school youth designed to challenge and eliminate stereotypes and prejudice. Her role with ANYTOWN involves planning and facilitating over 65 hours of content and skill-building training and managing a diverse session staff of 20-25 youth and adults, and recruiting and engaging delegate classes of over 50 young people each week.
In addition, Sarah personally mentors and supervises ANYTOWN graduates and volunteers year-round to create individual and systemic change. For the past 2-3 years, Sarah has coordinated the Pinellas County Schools District-Wide Youth Leadership Diversity Conference for middle and high school students. The purpose of this annual event is to inspire and educate delegations of young people from each school countywide to promote safety in their schools. During college, Sarah organized and facilitated weekly dialogue groups and activist projects with a feminist club. Using similar skills, she also participates in and helps coordinate Community Tampa BayÕs Facilitating the Leadership of Youth (FLY) group, an ongoing continuation of ANYTOWN for high school students. The youth meet weekly to plan local summits, for teens by teens, with upwards of 100 attendees covering topics including cliques, identity development, bullying, gender, racism, and stereotyping.
In 2011, Sarah became a certified facilitator of the 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens curriculum. She also attended the 2011 National Organization for Women (NOW) Conference in Tampa, and participated in events with Tim
Wise and Jessica Valenti at Eckerd College. She has lived in Florida her whole life, currently in St. Petersburg, and loves being an aunt.
Kevin Sanderson, president, Merritt & Sanderson, P.A.
Kevin Sanderson began a solo law practice in 2004 focusing largely on representing clients discriminated against in the workplace. He is a member of the National Employment Lawyers Association. In 2011, he formed Merritt & Sanderson, P.A. practicing business, estate and securities litigation.
Kevin graduated with a B.A. in psychology from Boston University and a J.D. and LL.M. in international taxation and offshore finance form St. Thomas University, Miami, Fl. Kevin was born and raised in New Jersey, graduating from the Peddie School in Hightstown.
Kevin joined the Sarasota Manatee Young Democrats in 2004 and eventually served as its president. He remains a member of the steering committee of the Democratic Party of Sarasota County.
He serves on the board of directors of several non-profits. Sarasota Pops Orchestra, a blended amateur and professional community orchestra; Suncoast Center for Independent Living, providing services to people with severe disabilities; and Kids and Elders Through Arts (KAETA), promoting dialogue between older and younger generations through shared experiences in the arts.
Kevin is a 2012 graduate of the Gulf Coast Community Foundation’s Leadership Institute and is a member of Leadership Sarasota’s class of 2014.
Daniel James Scott, Founder, Alorum, USFSP
Daniel James Scott is co-founder of investor-backed startup Alorum, seed-stage fund Gazelle Lab, and the 2013 USASBE Outstanding Emerging Entrepreneurship Program at USF St. Petersburg. He also serves on the boards of the Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship, a 40 year old academic-focused non-profit, and Lions Eye Institute for Transplant & Research, the only combined eye bank and ocular research center in the world. For his work, Daniel has been honored as the 2013 ASBE Entrepreneurship Educator of the Year, Tampa Bay Technology Forum Technology Leader of the Year, Small Business Influencer Awards Community Choice Winner and Top 100 Champion, and the US Small Business Administration’s State of Florida Business Advocate of the Year.
Hannah Strom, Founder and Chief Career Consultant, Self Employed: JD Career Coach LLC
Hannah Wanebo Strom is the Principle and Chief Career Strategist of JD Career Coach, a career consulting company for modern lawyers in a digital world.
In addition to traditional career consulting services, Hannah helps her clients build their online reputations, enhance their personal brands, and market themselves as savvy professionals in an increasingly digital marketplace. She also works with clients to create non-traditional careers, work-life balance, and remote working opportunities.
As a mother of two young children and a life-long activist for progressive causes, Hannah has personal experience with the conflicting messages women in the workplace receive: Lean in, but don’t sacrifice your family (or your looks, heaven forbid!); Demand equal pay, but donÕt rock the corporate boat. She has always been passionate about gender, racial, and LGBT equality in the workplace, and has served on multiple committees and non-profit organizations dedicated to creating inclusiveness in the legal profession.
Hannah earned her BA in Chemistry from Colorado College and her JD from the University of Colorado. As a student, she was actively involved in the Colorado Democratic Party and in numerous issue campaigns. Always charting her own path, Hannah also built adventure into her traditional studies. Before graduating from college, she spent six months on the rugged west coast of Ireland, living with progressive Catholic monks and helping to rebuild an ancient monastery. She later took a semester off of law school to mountaineer across the southern ice fields and kayak across the Straights of Magellan in Patagonia, Chile.
After graduating from law school, Hannah served as a law clerk to Justice Nathan B. Coats on the Colorado Supreme Court before practicing as a corporate lawyer at a large Denver firm. Despite her success as an attorney, she found her true passion mentoring young lawyers as they built their careers. She spent three years as a career consultant at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law, where she worked with hundreds of students and oversaw all of the programs focused on inclusiveness and diversity in the workplace.
She recently moved with her family to Tampa, where her husband is a resident physician at the Moffitt Cancer Center. Finally settled in their new home, Hannah launched her company: www.jdcareercoach.com.