Mark Williams, J.D. – Board Chairman

Mark is the Corporate Counsel, EcoFasten Solar.Mark’s practice has previously been concentrated in intellectual property (IP) law. His skill set includes a unique blend of IP counseling, IP rights enforcement and defense, as well as aggressive negotiation of IP-related transactions and acquisitions. His practice includes preparing, prosecuting, and enforcing patent, trademark, and copyright applications. Mark’s practice includes enforcing clients’ trademark rights in Federal Court and on the Internet. His experience includes acquiring “John Doe” seizure orders in advance of public sporting events, protecting brands before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB), protecting client brands under ICANN’s Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy (UDRP), protecting client technology from infringement and defending against claims of infringement in state and federal court. Mark graduated from Arizona State University (B.S., Mechanical Engineering, 2002) and Syracuse University College of Law (J.D., cum laude, 2008).

Board member since: 2010


Martin Johnson, M.D., M.P.H. – Board Vice Chair

Dr. Johnson is a Plastic Surgeon, Mayo Clinic. Dr. Johnson joined the faculty at the Mayo Clinic Arizona in 2015. He also recently completed his Master’s Degree in Public Health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He received his B.A from Arizona State University in 1972 and then received his MD from Baylor College of Medicine in 1975. He did his residency training in Richmond, VA and at UCLA and completed his plastic surgery training in Richmond. Dr. Johnson’s interests include Global Health and Physician Leadership. Over the past 35 years, he has served on numerous community boards, boy scouts, and is an active spectator for his children’s sporting adventures.

Board member since: 2013



Jeremy Smith C.P.A. – Board Treasurer

Jermy is a Partner, Henry & Horne and specializes in the area of taxation and cost segregation. He provides consulting, tax planning and compliance work to both individuals and closely held business entities. He also works with clients on tax credits and incentives. Jeremy’s areas of expertise include advising businesses in the areas of real estate, manufacturing, franchisor/franchisee, retail, distribution, and professional services. In real estate, he works with buyers, sellers, landlords, tenants and investors in a wide variety of transactions involving retail, commercial, residential, and mixed-use projects. He graduated from Bowling Green State University with a B.S. in Business Administration and an emphasis in accounting.

Board member since: 2012



Mark Jones – Board Secretary 

Mark is a Technical Program Manager for  Verizon where he uses his ITIL expert skills to help his global clients achieve their strategic business objectives and specialized in Lean Siz Sigma techniques to identify process improvement opportunities to make the business more profitable. Mark is an IT possess expert and technical program Manager. He manages the technical operations for the Verizon global program management office supporting top clients in the financial vertical. Mark is also a Phoenix Real Estate Agent who takes pride in helping his clients achieve their real estate goals, and is a passionate family man who enjoys giving back to the community. Mark holds a BS in Communication Studies from Arizona State University

Board member since: 2013





Members at Large


Leila Barraza, J.D., M.P.H. – Assistant Professor, Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, University of Arizona. Leila Barraza is an Assistant Professor at Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, University of Arizona. She also serves as a Consultant with the Network for Public Health Law – Western Region Office. Her Research interests include studying the impact of laws and regulations on population health. Previously, Barraza serves as Deputy Director of the Network for Public Health Law – Western Region Office, and a Fellow and Adjunct Professor in the Public Health Law and Policy program at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Arizona State University. Leila received her Master’s in Public Health from the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health at the University of Arizona in 2004. In 2008, she received her J.D. with a certificate in Law Science and Technology from Sandra Day O’Connor College of law.

Board member since: 2016




Charlie Clark, D.M.D.  Pediatric Dentist / Practice Owner, Pediatric Dental Specialists, P.C. Dr. Clark is a partner with pediatric Dental Specialists in Gilbert, AZ. Clark holds a B.A in Spanish and Literature from the University of Washington. He completed his dental education at the Arizona School of Dentistry and the Arizona Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. He currently serves on the board for several local and international nonprofit organizations including the Arizona Dental Foundation, The Arizona Community Dental Clinic, Central Arizona Dental Society and Canadian based, Dentistry For All.

Board member since: 2015




Robert Clarke, J.D. – Associate, Snell & Wilmer. Robert is a first year associate attorney in the intellectual property group at Snell & Wilmer. He attended Willamette University and earned a B.A in Chemistry and Economics in 2010. He received his Juris Doctor from Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law in 2015. Prior to pursuing his law degree, Robert was a claims adjuster for Progressive Insurance and also served as a volunteer youth leader at St. Francis Parish in Sherwood, Oregon.

Board member since: 2016



Michael Cook, M.A. – Chief Operations Officer, Shrader Martinez Construction Inc. Michael is currently the Chief Operations Officer of Shrader & Martinez Construction, Inc. He began his career after graduation from California Polytechnic University in Pomona California with a B.S in Physical Education and a Master’s in Education. He started coaching and teaching at a local high school and quickly worked his way up to Vice Principle, then Principle. After working in Education for 17 years, Michael moved into the private sector in Sedona, Arizona. He has been with the same firm for the last 28 years. Michael is deeply involved with his church as an elder, youth group leader, and a men’s ministry leader. As a world traveler, he has seen the tremendous need for food, water, housing and resources needed to combat poverty. He is excited to be part of work that Esperança provides to those in need.

Board Member since: 2017


James Foltz, M.D. – Obstetrics & Gynecological Surgeon, Focus on Women. Dr. Foltz’s private practice in Scottsdale is called Focus on Women. Since 1983, his clinic has been providing wellness and OB/GYN services to women in the Valley, and has contributed to improved birth and maternal health outcomes for thousands of moms and babies. He is also a member of the Phoenix OB/GYN Society. Dr. Foltz is an ASU alumni, graduated with hi MD from the University of Arizona in 1979 and completed his OB/GYN residency at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Phoenix.

Board member since: 2015




Dale Gray – Director – Engineering – Water / Solar, S.O.S., Inc. Dale Gray is an Arizona Registered Geologist with experience in designing, drilling and completing water wells and water purification systems in Haiti, India, El Salvador, Honduras and Mexico. He is also certified as an instrument technician supporting medical brigade efforts as the Lead Technician for Instrument Sterilization. Dale has participated in over 16 foreign engineering and medical brigades in Central America, Africa and Asia over the last 11 years.

Board member since: 2015




Mistie Hague Weishaar – Marketing Manager, Greenberg Traurig. Mistie is the Marketing Manager at Greenberg Trauig. Previously, Mistie was responsible for the budgeting of marketing, client development and charitable events, social media campaigns and online initiatives (SEO retargeting) at fennemore Craig, P.C. She also managed the law firm/ attorney ranking submissions (Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers, Chambers USA, U.S. News Best Law Firm, Martindale – Hubbell) and other industry award submissions and assisted in the development and implementation of the firm’s marketing events, advertising and public relations programs and firm/ attorney listing in legal directories and industry specific award opportunities. She graduated from Florissant Valley with her A.A in Fine Arts and went on to obtain her BIS in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on Business and Fine Arts.

Board member since: 2014




Mary Jacobs – Managing Director, Kennedy Wilson. As Managing Director, Mary’s major responsibility is overseeing the day to day operations of all types of commercial properties. Her smaller roles include negotiating service contracts, reviewing budgets, reviewing management and financial reports, overseeing maintenance, analyzing competitive bids for security, maintaining open and good communication with tenants, hiring, training and supervising the on- site staff, marketing, and negotiating and preparing leases. Mary graduated with a BS degree from the University of Wisconsin and went to obtain her certification as a Property manager from the Institute of Real Estate Management.

Board member since 2014




Julie Kurtz, M.S., R.D., C.D.E. – Chief of Nutrition, Hospitality and Food Services, Veterans Affairs Health Care System. As Chief of Nutrition, Hospitality and Food service, Julie manages a staff of 100 employees in the areas of clinical nutrition, food production, food service, and hospitality within an acute care, and sub- specialty facility. Previously, Julie was clinical dietitian thought he Pittsburg, VA healthcare system. Julie holds a MS degree in Nutrition form the University of Pittsburgh.

Board member since: 2015





Jared Leslie – Director of Media Services, The Foundation for Blind Children. Jared serves as Director of Media Services at The Foundation for Blind Children. He holds a degree from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University. Jared has provided oversight for the agency’s developmental and fundraising needs as Development Director of Esperança from 2012 until 2015. Previous experience includes the Greater Southwest Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Phoenix, Inc. and as Director of Development at Esperança.

Board member since: 2016




Justin Niedzialek, J.D. – Member, The Cavanagh Law Firm, P.A. Justin has been practicing law for eight years and currently, his primary focus is on labor and employment law. He also has experience with commercial litigation, bankruptcy, trustee’s sales, judicial foreclosures, creditor’s rights and land use/ eminent domain. He graduated from the University of San Diego with a BA in psychology and minors in Business Administration and communication studies. Justin holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Arizona.

Board member since: 2016




Jason Paltzer, Ph.D., M.P.H. – Director, Kingdom Workers. Jason has 13 years of experience in global health and community development. He is the global health director for Kingdom Workers, a nonprofit organization, providing oversight of community health initiatives in Africa, South East Asia, the Caribbean, and the US. He is also an assistant scientist with the University of Wisconsin where he received his Ph.D. in Population Health Sciences in 2014. Jason received his M.P.H from the University of Minnesota in 2003. He is an adjunct faculty member at Grand Canyon University and Arizona State University.

Board member since 2016




Rex Ragsdale, M.D., MBA, FACHE  Physician at Iora Health. Dr. Ragsdale was previously Vice President and Chief Medical Officer with the Cerner Corporation. He also practices family and geriatric medicine and has participated in medical mission trips to Brazil, Haiti, and Jamaica. He is a graduate of the St. Louis University School of Medicine. Rex is a board member with several other nonprofit organizations and cares about children, health, and the environment. He got his MBA at the University of Southern Indiana and a B.S in Chemistry at the University of Evansville.

Board Member since: 2015



Anthony A. Smith, M.D. – Anthony A. Smith, M.D – Head of Section – Hand Surgery, Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale. Dr. Smith is Head of Section – Hand Surgery at the Mayo clinic, Scottsdale as well as the Program Director of the Mayo clinic, Arizona Plastic surgery Residency. Dr. Smith was also a Major in the Medical Corps of the United States Army and received his medical Degree from the University of Illinois College of medicine.

Board member since: 2015






Kenady Sorenson – Development Executive, The Sedona Conference

Kennady has always had a passion for business and global Travel. With The Sedona Conference, she manages event logistics, in-house IT, Continuing Legal Education (CLE) coordination, social media marketing, membership management, publication formatting and design, special projects, graphic design / ad design, and eLearning.

Kennady holds a B.A in Political Science with a minor in Spanish from Arizona State University.

Board member since: 2014




McKenna Stephens, CFP, CLTC – Financial Advisor, North Star Resource Group

McKenna has been a financial advisor with North Star Resource Group for 13 years as a member of their Medical Division. McKenna is a CFP – Certified Financial Planner, and works closely with her clients to help them manage risk and ultimately achieve the personal and professional goals that are so important to them and their families. She received both her undergraduate degree as well as her MBA from Arizona State University. McKenna is passionate about providing financial education to the community and is a regular speaker to various groups throughout the Southwest. Outside of work, she is an active volunteer for her kids’ school and church, and also coaches her daughter’s softball team.

Board member since: 2017



David Upjohn, M.S. – Health Systems Engineer, Mayo Clinic – Phoenix

At the Mayo Clinic, David is a Management and Quality Improvement Engineer on the internal business consulting team. His focus is on improving healthcare delivery systems to provide better patient care at lower costs. His work gets featured at quality conferences across the country. David is a published author and has a background in international development and public health work. He is actively engaged in the Phoenix community.

David holds a B.A. in English from the University of Notre Dame and an M.S. in Health Care Delivery from Arizona State University

            Board member since: 2015



Stephanie Viviano – Director of Finance, Homeward Bound AZ

Stephanie is currently the Director of Finance at Homeward Bound, AZ. She was previously part- time Director of Administration with the Animal Defense League of Arizona. Her areas of expertise are setting up systems for financial management, organization development, human resources, and It management.

Stephanie holds a B.S. in Psychology and Human Development from Vanderbilt University and an MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management.

Board member since: 2015


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