Phyllis Barajas - Founder and Chief Executive Officer

Phyllis is the Chief Executive Officer of Conexión and a lifelong Latina activist and social entrepreneur committed to developing and advancing Latino leadership. Ms. Barajas’ unprecedented career spans industries and roles. She served as the first Latina assistant dean for human resources at Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She is a former deputy assistant secretary in the U.S. Department of Education offices of elementary, secondary and bilingual education appointed by President Clinton.

She serves on numerous non-profit boards and is a trustee of Eastern Bank, the largest independent, mutually owned bank in New England, with headquarters in Boston, Massachusetts. She is the first Latina trustee since the bank’s founding in 1818. She is originally from Omaha, Nebraska the proud daughter of Mexican immigrants.

Inez Stewart - Chair of the Board

Inez currently serves as Vice President of Human Resources, Children’s Hospital Boston. Inez is one of the area’s leading Latinas in business. She has an extensive record of achievement, spanning diverse industries in North America, Latin America and Asia Pacific. She has held executive-level positions in numerous organizations as is seen as one of the “go to” people when companies seek Latino talent in the region.

Bob Edwards - Treasurer of the Board

Bob Edwards Conexión Board Member

Bob is the Managing Partner at Edwards and Associates. He has made a lifelong commitment to talent management and inclusion. Throughout his career, Bob has designed diversity initiatives and succession planning strategies that benefit all as part of his work in organizational development and change management.

He has a broad background in project management, strategic organization change, human resources operations and managing line organizations. Before establishing his consulting practice, Bob served as Vice President of Administration at Xerox Corporation.

Sue Cann - Clerk of the Board

Sue is a Business Development Director for BI WORLDWIDE, working in the New England market. BI’s mission is to help clients translate their strategic goals into actionable programs that influence perceptions, change behavior and deliver measurable results.

Prior to joining BI, Sue was with Aon Hewitt for over 18 years. She was a Senior Vice President in the Boston office. She was also a member of the Northeast Region business development team and served as Local Market Leader for two years. Her primary responsibilities were sales and client relationship management. Prior to joining Aon, Sue served as the manager of human resources communications for Raytheon Company. She also served as a marketing associate for Coopers & Lybrand, a technical writer for Stone & Webster Engineering Corp., and as a legislative aide for a former Massachusetts State Senator and State Representative.

Sue Cann Conexión board member

Armando “Manny” Correia

Manny is currently the Founder and Principal Consultant for Inclusive Coaching. Manny drives exceptional performance by creating and fostering an inclusive culture that inspires individuals to fulfill their potential and contribute to superior business outcomes. He has a particular passion in assisting those from “traditionally” under-represented groups in business – women, people of color, LGBT, differently-abled and mature workers as well as new entrants to the workforce and returning veterans.

Prior to his current work, he was the Managing Director and Chief Administrative Officer at Harvard Management Company, Inc. responsible for all corporate functions. Additionally, Manny has held leadership roles on numerous nonprofit boards and committees.

Gregory R. Flores

Gregory R. Flores, also known as Greg, has been Chief Human Resources Officer and Executive Vice President of TJX Companies Inc. since December 6, 2006. Mr. Flores served as Senior Vice President of Reed Business Information Us of Reed Business Information Ltd. He served as Senior Vice President for Human Resources, Communications and Research at Reed Business Information, the largest global business-to-business media company. Mr. Flores has extensive experience … in the retail and consumer product industries, having held senior human resources positions with such companies as Daymon Worldwide, Thriftway Food & Drug, Inc., H.E. Butt Grocery Company, and PepsiCo.

Jean Hood

Jean is the Senior Vice President of Human Resources at the University of Texas at Arlington. She is very active in her profession and is an active member of the Society of Human Resources Management, The College and University Professional Association, The National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education as well as the Texas Diversity Council and North Texas Lead as an Advisory Board member.

Jean held executive level human resource positions at the Urban Institute in Washington D.C.; Harvard University Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge MA, and the Rhode Island School of Design.

Ana Perez Camayd

Ana is an executive search consultant retained by philanthropic, educational and civic organizations for recruitment of their senior staff.  She has been instrumental in recruiting university deans, chancellors, K-12 superintendents and the leadership of national advocacy organizations.

Ana has eight years grants management experience in organizational development through her work as a Senior Program Officer for the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) where she managed Boston’s Community Development Support Collaborative, a nationally recognized capacity building initiative, and Miami’s Organizational Development Support Collaborative.  She also served in the Dukakis Administration’s Department of Housing and Community Development where she advised Boards of Selectmen in the establishment of town-based affordable housing partnerships.

David R. Martinez

David is Associate Division Head, Cyber Security and Information Sciences Division, MIT Lincoln Laboratory.  In this capacity, he is focusing in the strategic and operations management of the Division in the fast growing area of cyber security, big data, analytics, information systems and cloud computing.

Prior to rejoining MIT/LL in May, 2011, Mr. David Martinez was the President and Chairman of Mercury Federal Systems. He was responsible for the company’s operations and strategic directions.

Mr. Martinez received his B.S. from New Mexico State University (NMSU) in 1976, and his M.S. degree from MIT, and the E.E. degree jointly from MIT and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. He was awarded the Eminent Engineer Award in 2008 from the College of Engineering at NMSU. He was elected to the NMSU Klipsch Electrical and Computer Engineering Academy in 2012.

He served on the Army Science Board from 1999 to 2004. Mr. Martinez is a member of MIT/LL Steering Committee. He co-authored the book titled: “High Performance Embedded Computing, A Systems Perspective,” CRC, 2008.

Carol Sanchez

Carol is founder and managing partner, of the first 100 percent Latina CPA firm in New England SANCHEZ & SANTIAGO, CPAs, Marlborough, MA.  Their focus is on owner run and/or home-based businesses. They strive to treat the owner and the business as one and maximize the financial and tax implications of both. To that end, unlike most CPAs, they provide bookkeeping services, personal and corporate tax preparation/planning and small business consulting.

Sanchez, a Framingham resident, is also a founding member of ALPFA, an organization that develops “Latino Leadership” which focuses on addressing the challenges of professional minority women. Sanchez previously was awarded the 2011 YWCA of Boston Academy of Women Achievers and won the U.S. Hispanic Chamber and Latina Style magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2006. She is a board member at Marlborough Savings Bank and a board & finance committee member at UMASS Medical Center and Marlborough Hospital.

In 2013 she received the MetroWest Chamber of Commerce coveted ATHENA Leadership Award for professional excellence and community service for her work as a tireless advocate and community leader and for actively assisting women in their attainment of professional excellence and leadership skills.

Jesús “Jesse” Treviño – Advisor to the Board

Jesse is a writer, blogger and social critic whose foremost interest is the impact of the demographic changes transforming the United States and the world. A former journalist, senior speechwriter at the Clinton White House and television producer, he believes the development of visionary leadership within American society, specifically among HispanicLatinos, is central to how the country prospers in the future. Treviño analyzes how the socio-demographic characteristics of the Latino population have attained national strategic significance. Jesse helps leaders in government and in the private sector examine the ramifications of Hispanic population growth on companies, organizations, government, institutions and markets. Jesse currently resides in Austin, Texas.

Latino demographics, new demography, Jesse Treviño

Robert Martinez – Advisor to the Board

Robert is the Manager of Diversity and Inclusion at Princeton University. He is known for his work in diversity and inclusion management and talent acquisition. Prior to his appointment at Princeton, he served as Recruitment and Diversity Specialist for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Employee Relations Specialist and Recruitment Supervisor for United Parcel Services, and International Regional Manager for the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society of New York.

Robert holds certifications as Missionary and Minister from the Ministerial Training School of the Watchtower Bible School of Gilead and as Senior Professional in Human Resource Management from the Society for Human Resource Management. The son of Mexican immigrants from the state of Sonora, he was born and raised in Los Angeles and lived in Ecuador for ten years.Latino leadership, Conexion, Robert Martínez

Frank McCarthy – Advisor to the Board

Frank is the Founder and President of Diverse Workplace, Inc. He is a diversity-recruiting pioneer. In 1973 he founded Xavier Associates and in 2004 Diverse Workplace, Inc. The mission of both companies is to assist clients to create and maintain a culturally diverse and inclusive workplace that values differences.

Frank has knowledge, skills, networks and resources to help diversity executives identify and recruit highly qualified candidates and foster inclusive work environments. He served as President of Massachusetts Professional Placement Consultants and is a board member of the Brockton Neighborhood Health Center, where he previously served as President of the Board of Trustees.

Colette Philips

“Savvy,” “dynamic,” “a pioneer” and a “visionary,” are words used to describe Ms. Phillips, President and CEO of Colette Phillips Communications, Inc.; one of Boston’s leading public relations and marketing communications firms.

She pioneered inclusion and multicultural marketing in the Boston/New England region. She is widely respected and recognized for her amazing ability to build bridges and create cross-cultural and inter-racial social networks and connections. One of her major contributions in that area is the creation of “Get Konnected” Boston’s premier urban professional and business networking event for people of all cultures, industries and sectors. Today, her company, Colette Phillips Communications, Inc. (CPC) has earned the position of being listed as one of the 25 top PR firms in Massachusetts.

She has earned the enviable position of being named three times (2008, 2007 and 2005) as one of the top 10 public relations specialists in Boston by Boston Women Business.  She is a tireless social entrepreneur, a connector and advocate, civic leader and champion for the development of women and people of color.