Nonprofits First
Board of Directors
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Nonprofits First is governed by a Board of Directors. Our Directors are business and community leaders representative of the communities we serve. They are active and involved with fundraising, increasing partnerships, creating opportunities for service and growth, and providing advocacy and developing community relationships. They are also raising awareness of Nonprofits First, identifying venues for marketing and public relations, recruiting new board members, and participating in special events and projects.

Andrew J. Gray, Board Chair

 

Andrew leads Daszkal Bolton’s Nonprofit Tax Services practice and oversees all tax consulting and compliance services for the firm’s tax-exempt clients. His clients include charitable organizations, private foundations, social clubs, trade associations and high net-worth families. Andrew has advised organizations regarding unrelated business income, excess benefit transactions, public support, and charitable planning strategies. He has also represented clients before the IRS and prepared applications to obtain and reinstate exempt status.

In addition, Andrew is the author of numerous newsletter articles and is a frequent speaker at various nonprofit and planned giving conferences and seminars.

Furthermore, Andrew is a tax and business advisor to closely held and family-owned companies providing federal, state and local tax planning and compliance. He assists clients in the fields of manufacturing, healthcare, consulting and marketing firms, and real estate.

Andrew’s community involvement includes positions as Board Chair of Nonprofits First and Treasurer of the Palm Beach North Chamber of Commerce Foundation. Also, he is part of Place of Hope, a faith-based foster care organization, as a member of the organization’s Planned Giving Council. Andrew and his family consistently serve as members of their local church.

Andrew is a member of the American and Florida Institutes of Certified Public Accountants. He is also a member of the Ohio Society of CPAs.

Andrew earned a Bachelor of Science in Business with a major in Accountancy, from Miami University in Ohio. He is a Certified Public Accountant, licensed by the State of Ohio.

Andrew may be reached at 561.886.5220, agray@dbllp.com, or on LinkedIn.

Deana Pizzo,  Vice Chair

Deana Pizzo is a native Floridian, born and raised in Palm Beach County. Deana has over 10 years of experience as CEO/Owner as a leading technology solutions provider serving South Florida. Her firm serves as the technology advisor and CIO services for business. Deana is an accomplished entrepreneur and successful female business owner.

Deana leads her company with passion from the heart. She is very involved in the I.T. Channel nationally, which allows her company to continually pursue new technology within the I.T. industry, in order to be a cutting edge, innovative technology leaders. She helps Small Businesses in South Florida develop cost effective solutions, by implementing the best-in-class technology to improve their bottom line. She strives daily to motivate and encourage her dedicated staff, and does her best to make a positive contribution to her local community. Additionally, she oversees marketing and community development for her business and loves what she does. 

She was honored to have WITI (Women in Technology International- South Florida) name her as a recipient of the "Women to Watch Award" in November 2010. She has a passion for green technology and guide SMBs to make the little changes that will affect us all. She enjoys sharing technology strategies with business owners to help their business grow strategically with less, through technology. In March 2014, Deana was awarded the Central Palm Beach County Community Foundation "WOW (Women of Worth) Stiletto Award" honoring outstanding women who have achieved professional excellence, serve their community, and have strengthened and enriched the quality of life in Palm Beach by helping to advance the educational, cultural and economic interests of the community. She has also been a nominee in 2011 and 2014 for the Athena Award, Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches.

She has been very involved in the other organization serving Palm Beach County having served on boards and committees for Families First of Palm Beach County, Leadership Palm Beach County, and Imagine Chancellor Charter School. Deana attended Florida Atlantic University for her undergraduate studies in Geological and Earth Sciences/Geoscience. She is married and a working mother of 2 children. Much of her volunteer time is split between the local community, her church and her children’s school.

Deana may be reached on LinkedIn.

Thomas A. Brockway, CPA,Treasurer

 

Thomas (Tom) is an Audit Partner of Holyfield & Thomas, LLC and works closely with the engagement team. Tom joined the firm in 1990 and brings extensive experience to audit and accounting engagements with numerous types of business organizations, both from the public and private sectors. Tom provides an insightful perspective to all engagements, which include not-for-profit organizations, family owned businesses and real estate. As Audit Partner, Tom provides technical support on a wide variety of topics involving the audit and accounting practice of Holyfield & Thomas, LLC. Tom serves on several not-for-profit organization committees and boards. Tom was raised in Palm Beach County and lives with his wife in unincorporated Lake Worth.

 

Philip M. DiComo, Board Member

 

Philip M. DiComo was born in Hollywood, Florida, is a summa cum laude graduate of the Nova Southeastern University Shepard Broad Law Center where he was a member of law review. Mr. DiComo is a 1986 high honors graduate of the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communication. Mr. DiComo previously was associated with the law firm of Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge LLP, where he practiced in the areas of corporate, securities and private equity. Prior to his law practice, Mr. DiComo had more than 15 years of communication, fund development and management experience in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors.

Mr. DiComo had an extensive background in the radio and television industry, and served as a Vice President for West Palm Beach public radio and television stations. Mr. DiComo is currently active in the Lawyers for Literacy Committee of the Palm Beach County Bar Association, the Treasure Coast Angel Investor Forum, and is a director of the Community Broadcast Foundation of the Palm Beaches and Treasure Coast and the BioMotion Foundation. Mr. DiComo is the recipient of the 2004 Non-Profit Law Award from the Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County.

Mr. DiComo concentrates his practice in the area of corporate, private equity, emerging companies, mergers and acquisitions and not-for-profit law. Mr. DiComo has made presentations to numerous groups on such topics as:
• The Role of Non-Profit Board of Directors
• Why Sarbanes-Oxley Matters to Non-Profit Organizations, and
• Risk Management Considerations in Your Business and Workplace.

Phil may be reach on LinkedIn.

Myra Goldman, Board Member

Most of Mrs. Goldman's career was spent in the nonprofit sector working for major health care institutions. Although her primary responsibilities were in the public affairs, public relations, media relations areas, she directed community relations programs, volunteer programs, health education and health testing programs, fundraising and development programs and was one of the first in the country to develop and implement marketing programs and strategies for an academic health care institution. She also developed unique student volunteer educational programs. Mrs. Goldman designed and taught sensitivity training course to emergency room personnel, both professional and non-professional staff.
After spending twenty years plus in the health care field, she became a financial advisor, obtained her license in three states and sold health, life and disability insurance plans. In addition, she also held a Series 6 license and sold mutual funds and other investments that complemented the financial plans she developed.

Kenneth E. Montgomery, Jr., Board Member

 

Kenneth E. Montgomery Jr., a native of Palm Beach County, received a BA and BS degree from the University of Tennessee with graduate course work at Nova University. He has over twenty years of experience as a CEO/President/Executive Director of not for profit corporations with budgets ranging from $ 8,000,000. to $58,000,000 in Palm Beach County. During his tenure he was known for not only thinking out of the box, but getting out of the box and implementing new programs while staying within the rules of the box. He attributes successes not to himself but too others he encouraged and supported thereby developing innovative teams to exceed performance expectations and outcomes. 

As a result of his resolve his organizations received state and national recognition for developing unique partnerships which were highly successful and cost effective. Through partnerships he worked to develop the first One Stop Center combining 12 organizations into one seamless system which was nominated for national recognition and statewide replication. The Workforce Development Board of which he was CEO was the first in the nation to award pay for performance contracts to a private for profit corporation under Welfare Reform. Also, they were the first in the state to award performance based contracts for public employment services to a private firm including management of public employees. Through a partnership they were the first Workforce Development Board to develop with a privately owned newspaper arrangements to place kiosks for job announcements and training while incorporating direct promotional advertisements. This unique partnership developed a data management system of occupational job growth and decline thus forecasting needs of the local labor market as indicated by local businesses.

As CEO he recognized the need for meaningful local labor market information system to assist employers of Palm Beach County with information on all phases of employment. A private corporation was awarded a contract and this information was made available through an interactive data information system to businesses, members of the community, and the school system for counseling. The data was used to establish career academies while providing information for economic development agencies and chambers of commerce. The data collected served as a basis for insuring that training programs were market driven and utilized the skills demanded by employers locally and annually updated. He advocated and spearheaded the use of displaced workers to become math and science teachers under an intensive program with FAU, certifying teachers within six months. 

His ability to encourage others to exceed their own expectations and for partnerships to see the value of working together has led to many successful ventures. It is this ability, from which he developed two not for profit corporations from inception to fully operational and successful corporations. Thus, he has expertise in all phases of development, governance, evaluation/analysis, operations, grant writing, strategic planning, organizational development, reorganization, budgeting, performance and outcome measures. We these skills and acumen he founded Barnabas Consulting Group, Inc. in 2004 and has worked with a Fortune 500 Corporation, a Golden Award Restaurant, a Dental Office, and other small businesses and nonprofit organizations. During his involvement with these corporations he has served on numerous nonprofit organizations, community organizations, and boards as a board member and officer.

Kenneth may be reached on LinkedIn.

Mark Montgomery, Board Member

 

Mark Montgomery advises successful families about their complex personal risk and designs and manages risk management programs to mitigate and protect against loss. Mark has 25 years of insurance expertise, 14 of which have been specifically focused on the property and liability risk management needs of affluent families in Palm Beach. Mark has been very involved in Palm Beach non-profits having served on boards or committees of Foundcare, Community Chest, Rehabilitation Center for Children and Adults, Food for the Poor, Boy Scouts of America, Place of Hope and the Community Partnership Group. Additionally, Mark is a past President of the Palm Beach County Estate Planning Council.

Mark Montgomery earned his MBA and undergraduate degrees from Stetson University. Formerly, he was a Vice President at Marsh Private Client Services and Director at Frank Crystal & Company.

Mark may be reached on LinkedIn.

Bessie Phillips, Board Member

 

Bessie Phillips is a banking professional with Wells Fargo & Co. Bessie is the National Sales Enhancement Program Manager for Merchant Services, responsible for designing channel distribution strategies that leverage her 10 years of experience within the financial services industry. Bessie was raised in West Palm Beach and is actively involved in the Wells Fargo Volunteer Program. In 2014, Bessie co-founded the Wells Fargo Greater Palm Beach Volunteer Chapter, with past service as the Vice President and as the Communications Chair currently.

 

Bessie attended the University of South Florida (USF) for her undergraduate studies on a full athletic scholarship. While attending USF, she earned a BS degree in Criminology with a minor in Psychology. Upon graduation, she joined the LPGA Futures Tour and played professional golf for 3 years. Following her professional golf tour, Bessie went on to graduate school at Nova Southeastern University. She earned her Masters of Business Administration (MBA), graduating with honors. She is a member of the Sigma Beta Delta International Honors Society. 

Bessie can be reached on LinkedIn

Jennifer Sullivan, Board Member

 

Jennifer Sullivan has spent 17 years in the public relations and marketing industry, and has held senior positions at the O’Donnell Agency, Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties and Ideabar, an advertising agency owned by Cox Media Group. She is currently Director of Marketing at the Cultural Council of Palm Beach County where she manages a national marketing campaign to promote The Palm Beaches as a destination for art and culture.

Jennifer’s experience includes strategic planning; managing complex media outreach, community relations and social media programs for varied industries; influencing fundraising and donor cultivation strategies; and providing creative concepts and art direction for a range of collateral and promotional materials.

A Florida native, Sullivan resides in Royal Palm Beach and serves on the boards of Leadership Palm Beach County, Nonprofits First and the Carbonell Awards.

Jennifer can be reached on LinkedIn.

Mae Ferguson, Board Member

Mae Ferguson is an accomplished New Business Development Executive with more than 10 years’ progressive experience managing a portfolio of high level clients. Her impressive success is due to her ability to establish solid client relationships through her authenticity, personal high-touch, ability to network effectively, and her unusual capability in obtaining high level sponsorships and donations. Her experience encompasses new business development, board positions, client management, and high-level marketing. She has strong ties to the business community with solid connections with business leaders, non-profits, and political leaders.

Mae’s career began with Pfizer Pharmaceutical and the surgical device division of Kimberly Clark, working as a Territory Manager for over nine years. In that role, she was recognized numerous times for her top-ranking results.

After moving to Palm Beach County nearly a decade ago, Mae began working with The Palm Beach Post/Cox Media Group. In her time there, she was named the 2015 Cox Media Group Digital Sales Leader, recognized by Google and Cox Media Group among the most knowledgeable digital account executives nationwide. She was also named the 2015 Cox Media Group President's Circle Winner, noted for her ability to create results-focused marketing strategies for her clients as the New Business Development Executive for Ideabar/Cox Media Group.

Mae graduated from Rollins Collins with a degree in Organizational Communication. She also currently serves on the board of Meals on Wheels and has served on boards and committees for Best Buddies, Young Friends of the Norton Museum of Art, Young Friends of the South Florida Science Museum, and Girls on the Run.  She is also a member of the 2017 Leadership Engage Class with Leadership Palm Beach County.

Mae is an avid runner and a mother to her son Cook and her daughter, Mary Britton. Mae's husband, Tad Ferguson, is a fourth generation Floridian and Palm Beach County resident. 

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