Additions to the AVANCE National Board of Directors

Additions to the AVANCE National Board of Directors

The AVANCE National Board of Directors has grown! We are pleased to introduce eight new members to the Board, including new parent and chapter representatives. We’re excited to have them on the team and thankful for the unique perspectives and expertise each brings to our diverse Board of Directors.

Sterling Stewart, Parent Representative (Houston)

Sterling Stewart is an active Union Representative for the American Postal Workers Union (APWU). He advocates for labor rights and positively impacts children’s lives as Chair of the AVANCE-Houston Policy Council and President of the Parent Committee. In his free time, Sterling enjoys reading and spending time with his two children.

Rose Martinez, Parent Representative (San Antonio)

Rose is a member of the AVANCE-San Antonio Policy Council. She holds a Master of Arts in Teaching from UIW and has worked at Vestal Elementary for 16 years, teaching Kindergarten, First, and Third Grade. During her years at Vestal, she has been a team leader, helped in different communities, and is part of DEPERC, where they discuss important decisions that impact our community, employees, stakeholders, and mostly their students. She is also a member of the Harlandale Education Association and is part of the Insurance Advisory. Being involved in child development and education is important to Rose, and she is a certified Foster Care. She is currently raising her granddaughter who attends the AVANCE 6 months-2 years Early Head Start at Fenley Main.

Dr. Iliana Alanís

Dr. Iliana Alanís, a native of South Texas, is a Professor of Early Childhood and Elementary Education in the Department of Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching. She completed her Ph.D. at the University of Texas, Austin in Curriculum and Instruction with specializations in Multilingual Studies and Educational Psychology. She engages teacher candidates and practicing teachers for their work in culturally and linguistically diverse classrooms with a primary focus on the rights of young children to develop their native language and cultural identity. Dr. Alanís uses a sociocultural lens to examine effective pedagogical practices in early childhood, dual language contexts. Her extensive body of work includes over 50 refereed publications. Before entering academia, Dr. Alanís was a bilingual teacher for second-grade students in the Texas Rio Grande Valley. She is a longstanding member of the Dual Language Training Institute and a founding member of the Vales Por Dos Consulting Group. Dr. Alanís has also held leadership positions, including the Texas Association for Bilingual Education (TABE) presidency, National Latino Children’s Institute board member, and Governing Board Member for the National Association for Early Childhood Education (NAEYC).

Belinda May Arambula

Belinda May Arambula is a partner in Terrazas PLLC, where she has diverse civil litigation practice, ranging from construction defect to business litigation and personal injury. She also serves on the boards of several state and local bar organizations, including the Texas Rules of Evidence Committee, Austin Bar Foundation, and Hispanic Bar Association of Austin (former president). When she is not serving her clients or the legal community, Belinda is pounding the pavement training for her next race or volunteering with the Hispanic Bar Foundation, AVANCE-Austin Chapter, and Boy Scouts of America. Belinda earned her undergraduate degree from Baylor University and her law degree from the University of Illinois, College of Law.

Priscilla Camacho

Priscilla serves as the Chief Legislative, Industry, & External Relations Officer at Alamo Colleges District. In her role, she focuses on legislative policy, relationships with industry partners, and collaborating with community organizations whose mission and work align with the Alamo Colleges. Prior to Alamo Colleges, Priscilla worked for the Dallas Regional Chamber and the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce. A family law attorney early in her career, Priscilla worked for several San Antonio law firms, including Plunket & Gibson and Ford & Massey. She also owned and operated her own law practice for several years. A native of Laredo, Texas, Priscilla graduated from St. Mary’s University with a degree in English & Communication Arts and received her law degree from the Texas Tech University School of Law. Priscilla has also served in various capacities on nonprofit and governmental boards and has been recognized for her service to the bar and community. Priscilla has been named as a 40 under 40 leader by the San Antonio Business Journal, G.O.L.D. Award recipient from the Texas Tech University School of Law, Outstanding Young Lawyer by the Bexar County Women’s Bar Association, and a Texas Super Lawyer Rising Star by Texas Monthly and Scene in SA Magazine. 

Ife Gbosi

Ife Gbosi leads Commercial Credit Change Initiatives for Bank of America. Her responsibilities include overseeing various processes and platforms that deliver end-to-end credit solutions for Business Banking, Global Commercial Banking, and Global Markets clients. Prior to her current role, Ife was a Leader on Loan to Prairie View A&M University. Ife led campus-wide initiatives to connect students to career pathways and engaged with employers to drive the hiring of Prairie View A&M students for internships and full-time positions. Ife joined Bank of America in December 2005 and held several leadership positions in its Consumer Bank, Global Technology and Operations division, and Regulatory Compliance before joining the Leader on Loan Program.

Dr. Nicole McZeal Walters

Dr. Nicole McZeal Walters serves as the Founding Dean of the Kolbe School of Innovation and Professional Studies at the University of St. Thomas and is also an Associate Professor of Educational Leadership. As a leadership professor, her research agenda includes developing leaders to embrace servant and moral leadership, social philanthropy, and integrating culture and language to support academic achievement in historically underserved, marginalized students.  Her academic work has been published in the Women, Gender, and Families of Color Journal, the International Journal of Educational Reform, Wisconsin English Journal, Gifted Child Today, and School Leadership Review. She is a co-editor of a book entitled Gumbo for the Soul II: Liberating Memoirs and Stories to Inspire Females of Color. Dr. Walters has been awarded Outstanding Educator of the Year by the Child Care Council of Greater Houston, Outstanding UH College of Education Award by the University of Houston, the Excellence in Education Award by Texas Southern University, Founders’ Day Award by Spelman College, and has been recognized by Houston Magazine as one of Houston’s 50 Most Influential Women. Dr. Walters holds a Bachelor of Science in English and Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Houston, and a Masters and Doctorate of Educational Leadership from Texas Southern University.

Alice Rodriguez

Alice Rodriguez has over 35 years of extensive banking experience with JPMorgan Chase and its predecessors. She has held executive positions in Business Banking, Consumer Banking, Wealth Management, and Community Impact. Since retiring, Alice has engaged more actively in a business that she has co-owned with her husband, Tom Kendall, for 20 years. Kendall Milagro Inc. is a family-owned business in the Dallas area that focuses on boutique home building and real estate investments. She sits on the board of the largest utility player in Texas, Oncor Electric Delivery Co. Alice holds a BBA in Management from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Her professional investment licenses include series 7, 9, 10, and 66. Alice is the immediate past chair for the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and currently serves on many other boards including Dream Spring CDFI, Latino Business Action Network, Perot Museum, and Dallas Arboretum.

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