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Watson Institute Team

Watson Institute is led by a team of strong-hearted individuals who aim to shape the future of education while supporting some of the world’s most promising next generation leaders and entrepreneurs.

Programs

Saarika Anand

Executive Director

Saarika leads the team, preceptors, and development of Watson Institute, South Florida. In her role, she oversees all programming, including workshops, Impact Series, and both our Mentor and Employer Networks. She also serves as a liaison to the broader South Florida community for the program and scholars.

Mary Campbell

Programs Manager

Mary manages the Impact Fellowship programs for our partners, next-generation entrepreneurs, and leaders. The Impact Fellowship programs include award-winning training, venture development stipend opportunities, committed mentorship, and a vast network of resources.

Nirva Dhaya

Programs Manager

Nirva manages the Impact Fellowship programs for our partners, next-generation entrepreneurs, and leaders. The Impact Fellowship programs include award-winning training, venture development stipend opportunities, committed mentorship, and a vast network of resources

Evelyn Flaugh

Associate Programs Manager

Evelyn (Evie) leads the design and implementation of a world-class Summit experience that showcases the projects, ventures, and initiatives of highly promising, diverse, next-generation entrepreneurs and leaders.

Gulmina Mahmud

Associate Director of Design

Gulmina supports the design of global programming to meet the needs of all partnerships and deliver high-quality programming to meet the needs of our fellows and scale our global impact.

Lizzy Monroe

Lizzy Monroe

Programs Manager

Lizzy manages the Impact Fellowship programs for our partners, next-generation entrepreneurs, and leaders. The Impact Fellowship programs include award-winning training, venture development stipend opportunities, committed mentorship, and a vast network of resources.

Angelique Newhouse

Angelique Newhouse

Programs Manager

Angelique manages the Impact Fellowship programs for our partners, next-generation entrepreneurs, and leaders. The Impact Fellowship programs include award-winning training, venture development stipend opportunities, committed mentorship, and a vast network of resources.

James Okina

Programs Manager

James is a pioneer graduate of our inaugural cohort at Watson Institute at Lynn University and is the Founder and current Board Member of Street Priests, which is an organization that supports street children in Nigeria. In his role, James manages the implementation of all of the programming elements at Watson Institute at Lynn University.

Uche Ogbonna

Programs Coordinator

Uche is a graduate of Watson Institute at Lynn University. She supports the implementation of all of the programming elements of the Impact Fellowship programs for our partners and next-generation entrepreneurs and leaders.

Teal Vickrey

Programs Manager

Teal manages the Impact Fellowship programs for our partners, next-generation entrepreneurs, and leaders. The Impact Fellowship programs include award-winning training, venture development stipend opportunities, committed mentorship, and a vast network of resources.

Emanuel Wilder

Emanuel Wilder

Programs Manager

Emanuel manages the core elements of the Watson Institute Career Accelerator program and supports ongoing recruitment efforts. The Career Accelerators include committed mentorship, award-winning training, personal and professional skill development, and an impactful network of peers and resources.

Eduardo Balarezo

Preceptor

Eduardo is a passionate leader with 25+ year-experience in finance, management, social innovation, business strategy, product development, human development, partnerships and startups.

Ali Frankel

Preceptor

Ali is a dedicated facilitator and strategist with 15+ years of experience, passionate about empowering teams and communities for positive change. She specializes in systems change, well-being, and empowering young changemakers, artists, and movement-builders. Her work is rooted in our shared humanity and guided by creative and spiritual practice, always with a focus on justice and well-being for all.

Denise Bean

Preceptor

Denise has over 35 years of experience in the behavioral health field. She serves as the Executive Director at The Guidance Center, a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic in rural Northwestern Pennsylvania. Her passion and commitment are to the underserved. Believing that obstacles can be overcome, Denise has spent most of her career developing new programs to fill identified gaps in services. She believes in the importance of strong communities and enjoys opportunities that foster team building and leadership development.

Manuel Costa

Preceptor

Manuel leads financial inclusion and impact investing projects across the US and LatAm. He was born and raised in Buenos Aires, went to University in the UK, and earned his Masters of Business Administration (MBA) at Duke University. His most recent experiences include working for one of the largest CDFIs in the US, leading the US office of a Latin American NGO as interim CEO, and orchestrating the RISE Fund in South Florida.

Santra Denis

Preceptor

Santra currently serves as the Interim Executive Director for the Miami Workers Center, a strategy and action center whose purpose is to build the power and self-determination of South Florida’s most oppressed communities, and help to build a progressive voice and platform that can nurture the growth of movements for social change in Florida and in the United States.

Stephanie Delgado

Preceptor

Stephanie is an applied economist and Founder of DataCents Analytics, LLC specializing in data strategy, value, and impact estimation and applications of public sector data. She is an Advisory Board member of AtliQ, a Thought Leadership Partner with Public Sector Network, and a Contributor to Forbes Ignite.

Mentor Dida

Mentor Dida

Preceptor

Mentor brings over a decade of experience in leading impactful projects within social entrepreneurship. Mentor has a wealth of experience in launching businesses and crafting effective Go-To-Market strategies, and he is enthusiastic about embarking on this journey alongside you, leveraging his expertise to drive success and create meaningful impact. At his core, Mentor is a conscious leader who enjoys connecting with people and working together for a greater impact. He is a dedicated meditator on a mission to spread compassion and joy to all.

Erik Gavin

Erick Gavin

Preceptor

Erick Gavin is the Executive Director of Venture Miami, an economic development office of the City of Miami tasked with facilitating the growth of the technology and innovation ecosystem. Prioritizing STEM education, he fosters social and economic impact through collaboration, shaping Miami as a tech hub.

Cole Hoover

Preceptor

Cole Hoover, a seasoned transformative facilitator with 15 years of social impact experience, enhances social and environmental impact through business principles. As an entrepreneur and co-founder of Washington state’s first accredited social enterprise certificate program at the University of Washington, he actively teaches related courses. Serving on the board of the Whidbey Institute and an alum of the World Economic Forum’s “Global Shaper” program, Cole’s global influence extends through inspiring professionals in social enterprise, equity, and microfinance.

Rob Kellogg

Preceptor

Rob has more than twenty years of experience working with businesses, governmental agencies and nonprofits in various leadership and entrepreneurial roles across diverse sectors.

Pranoo Kumar

Preceptor

Pranati “Pranoo” Kumar (Skomra) has taught, led, worked with and founded a number of elementary school systems and programs on the East and West Coast – from the South Bronx to Harlem and Seattle – committed to identity driven and empowering learning experiences. She is currently the owner and education leader of Rohi’s Readery, a social justice driven children’s bookstore and learning center committed to critical literacy that promotes inclusivity and diversity.

Brian Knowles

Preceptor

Brian Knowles is a dynamic speaker, writer, researcher, and educator with the distinction of being twice named by Legacy Magazine as one of South Florida’s Top Black Educators (2018 and 2022). Brian is the founder of Power Builders Curriculum and Pedagogies, an educational consulting company that supports schools, community organizations, and education-focused nonprofits in creating culturally affirming spaces. This includes: policy, curriculum design, and professional development for educators.

Andrew Lee

Preceptor

Andrew is an entrepreneur who is a strong advocate for AI and big data to improve quality of life. He is the founder of SurfBigData, dedicated to intelligent algorithms to remove long-standing choke points in enterprise management. Andrew has chief experience in healthcare, smart city, and intelligent transportation. He is an advisory member of multiple advanced technology developments. Andrew’s mission and passion is to “try and make a dent in the Universe.”

Eduardo Owens

Preceptor

Eduardo founded //Movement, a socially-responsible fitness initiative that recycles the energies of it’s fans and patrons into socially conscious projects in the community and around the world.

Alexina Prather

Preceptor

Alexina Prather is a social impact professional and entrepreneur, with a background in Sustainable Business and Human Resources. Alexina is a consultant at a social-impact firm based out of Kingston, JA providing ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) services. In 2019, Alexina founded a sustainable fashion brand that promotes the secondhand clothing industry and upcycling. Recently, Alexina directed an initiative that supported minority and women-owned businesses in accessing funds and resources in Miami-Dade County.

Julie Penner

Julie Penner

Preceptor

Julie is a leadership and strategy coach, facilitator, and investor in startups. In addition to her work with Watson, she serves as an Entrepreneur in Residence at Techstars Anywhere, Telluride Venture Network and as a Venture Partner at the Frazier Group, an early-stage venture fund. She is also the founder of Soul of Startups. She holds a JD/MBA from University of Colorado with an emphasis in entrepreneurship and a BA from Brown University.

Madison Slate

Preceptor

Madison works as the Director of Special Projects for the Office of the President at Lynn University. Madison manages a wide variety of projects including a 10,000 sq ft coworking space, a 112,320 sq ft student housing project opening in fall 2022, Lynn’s online program partnership with Kaplan, and Lynn’s student housing master plan. Her past experiences cross multiple paths from creating a non-profit organization in the Democratic Republic of Congo to project management in the entertainment, telecommunications, CRM, and direct marketing industries.

Danielle St. Luce

Preceptor

Danielle St. Luce is a non-traditional fundraising consultant focused on access to capital for first-time and novice entrepreneurs. She is experienced in supporting social ventures needing first-time capital and operational consulting. Her work focuses primarily on supporting government agencies and nonprofits in building capital programs for entrepreneurs in their communities.

Marte Siebenhar

Preceptor

Marte is a classically trained professional musician and strategic planner, founded Cultured Innovations to help clients translate vision into value and facilitate success on purpose. Her work as a coach and consultant, allows her to support artists, nonprofit leaders and boards in creating more value, visibility, and financial security.

Julia Wilkinson

Julia Wilkinson

Preceptor

Julia Wilkinson is founder and CEO of imvest, committed to building a sustainable future through social entrepreneurship and impact investing. She is an expert in impact and finance due diligence, structuring deals and funds, building impact investment strategies, and leading the integration of sustainable finance strategies to generate value.

Vanessa Zamy

Preceptor

Vanessa Zamy, The Business Defibrillator®, is empowering women nationwide to lead prosperous community enterprises. Her background includes a Management Science and Engineering Degree from Stanford University, and strategic leadership roles at Fortune 500 companies. A Consultant, a Professor, a Speaker, and Bestselling Author, in her spare time, Vanessa enjoys sleeping, and living by her mantra: “have fun, grow money, and share”.

Search & Admissions

Lallas Chen

Programs Manager, China

Lallas is responsible for leading Watson Institute programming in China, as well as searching China and the globe for entrepreneurs, innovators, and changemakers to join our programs.

Javier De Soto

Associate Search Manager

Javier supports our global search for promising next-generation social impact leaders and entrepreneurs for the Impact Fellowship programs and Watson Institute at Lynn University.

Casey Field

Search Manager

Casey leads our global search for promising next-generation leaders and social entrepreneurs for the Watson Institute Impact Fellowship programs.

Milena Kirillova

Search Manager

Milena is a graduate of Watson Institute at Lynn University. She leads our global search for promising next-generation entrepreneurs and leaders for the Watson Institute Impact Fellowship programs.

Javi Lopez-Mochon

Javier López-Mochón

Senior Director of Admissions

Javier leads our global search team to find and select the most promising young innovators by improving, expanding, and diversifying Watson Institute’s nominator network and key partnerships for all of our programs.

Sandra Mancia

Associate Search Manager

Sandra supports our global search for promising next-generation leaders and entrepreneurs for our Impact Fellowship programs, in addition to other programmatic offerings.

Monica Solares

Associate Search Operations Manager

Monica supports our global search for promising next-generation leaders and entrepreneurs for our Impact Fellowship programs, in addition to providing world class technical and operational support to the team’s recruitment, admissions, and marketing functions.

Operations

Alberto Gómez

Senior Director of Operations

Alberto organizes and leads the daily operations at Watson Institute, including but not limited to: hiring, people operations, financial management, and program operations. Prior to his role at Watson Institute Alberto served as a Wildland Firefighter and is a Veteran of the United States Marine Corps.

Rachel Hemler

Operations Coordinator

The Operations Coordinator, Boulder manages the Watson Institute headquarters in Boulder, Colorado, and supports the daily operations at Watson Institute, including but not limited to: leading program operations, managing/tracking program budgets, and other org-wide projects that are developed by Watson Institute’s Senior Director of Operations (SDOO).

Daniela Lippi

Operations Coordinator

The Operations Coordinator supports the daily operations at Watson Institute, including but not limited to: supporting org-wide operations, leading hiring operations and talent outreach, and other org-wide projects that are developed by Watson Institute’s Senior Director of Operations (SDOO).

Development

Ariana Agombar

Senior Director of Development

Ariana leads our global development function with the goal to build relationships and meet fundraising goals required to expand our impact. This includes compelling writing of grant proposals and strong funder communication, project management of fundraising related projects, prospecting and research into new partners and marketing.

Dora Iyigun

Development Coordinator

Dora supports the global development function by prospecting, strengthening, and building corporate and foundation partnerships to expand Watson Institute’s impact on highly promising, diverse, next-generation entrepreneurs and leaders.

Leadership

Isabel DeJesus

VP of Admissions & Programs

Isabel leads our global admissions team with the goal to strengthen our search strategy and impact worldwide. In addition, she oversees our Career Accelerator program. In this capacity, she advises program design, identifies and assesses technical and operational requirements, and ultimately translate those requirements into an implementation strategy that meets the needs of both our partners and Watson Institute.

Dwayne Griffith

Associate VP of Programs

Dwayne leads the program implementation team for Watson Institute’s Impact Fellowship programs and ensures the highest level of programmatic quality and impact. The Impact Fellowship programs include award-winning training, venture development stipend opportunities, committed mentorship, and a vast network of resources. He is a pioneer graduate of our inaugural cohort at Watson Institute at Lynn University.

Tyler Guiliano

VP of Impact Ecosystem

Tyler leads the recruitment of a vibrant and engaged community of Preceptors, Mentors, and Entrepreneurs in Residence to coach and support our Fellows. Her goal is to add ‘moonshot’ level individuals to our network so that we have the best network in the world to support our Fellows and grow our impact. Tyler also oversees and serves as a coach to the team at Watson Institute at Lynn University.

Eric Glustrom

CEO & Founder

Recognized as an Ashoka fellow, Echoing Green fellow, and one of Forbes 30 under 30 social entrepreneurs, Eric’s work is driven by a simple belief: to solve the toughest challenges facing humanity, the place to start is within the hearts and minds of the next generation.

Andrew Lippi

COO & Co-Founder

Andrew serves as the internal lead of the organization and manages our organization-wide functions: Program Implementation, HR/Operations, Design, Admissions and Development. He builds and instills culture in our top-notch teams and supports each team in achieving their goals. He is known as a GyShiDo Master and aims to set the foundation for Watson Institute to become a hundred year old institution.

Board of Directors

Eric Glustrom

Founder & Chief Executive Officer

Recognized as an Ashoka fellow, Echoing Green fellow, and one of Forbes 30 social entrepreneurs under 30, Eric’s work is driven by a simple belief: to solve the toughest challenges facing humanity, the place to start is within the hearts and minds of the next generation.

Jason W. Griffith

Associate, Benesch

Partner in the Private Equity and Independent Sponsor practices at McGuireWoods, Jason has extensive corporate, pro-bono, and non-profit expertise. From the board, he supports Watson Institute with legal and strategy questions, among others.

Jane Miller

CEO, Lily's Sweets

A recognized leader in the natural and organic food industry, Jane is former CEO of Lily’s Sweets (sold to Hershey’s), co-founder of Haevn (with several Watson Institute alums!) and has 30 years of executive experience in PepsiCo, Heinz, and Rudi’s Bakery. Jane publishes the popular blog JaneKnows.com on the tips, tools, and truths to lead a meaningful career.

Mike Miles

Retired Microsoft executive

Mike is a retired Microsoft executive where he led high profile, global products and most recently the Community Development program that supports 50+ global communities. Mike is an early-stage investor, advisor and board member of numerous non-profit and for-profit start-ups.

Advisory Board

Erin Boyd

Co-Founder, AshokaU

As co-founder and former Community Director of AshokaU, Erin has been a key player in supporting colleges and universities everywhere to become hubs of social innovation.

David Burstein

Founder, Run for America

David is a writer, filmmaker, and passionate believer in the millennial generation. He is the author of the book Fast Future: How the Millennial Generation is Shaping our World.

Robin Luff

Founder, Raising our Voices

Robin believes that the education system needs a boost. With that, she has committed her time to systemic change with charter school oversight, preschool readiness for Spanish speakers, and executive functioning skills for marginalized communities.

Roshan Paul

Founder, Amani Institute

Roshan is the Founder of Ashoka’s Globalizer and the Amani Institute. He is a guest lecturer at over a dozen universities – from Harvard to Paris’ HEC Business School. His course is entitled: “Scaling Social Enterprises Globally.” Roshan is also a Preceptor at Watson Institute at Lynn University.

Kevin Ross

President, Lynn University

Under Kevin’s leadership, the university has implemented a redesigned core curriculum, the nationally recognized Dialogues; a first-year student experience titled The Citizenship Project; and a three-year undergraduate degree program.

Scott Sherman

Executive Director, TAI

Scott Sherman is the Executive Director of Transformative Action Institute and has worked on nonviolence and social justice projects from the war-torn island of Sri Lanka to the inner city ghettoes of America.