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Our Team

Regional Director

Sandra Marín, CGBP, MPA, PMP

Sandra Marín, CGBP, MPA, PMP

Expertise: International Trade, Technology Commercialization, Access to Capital, Project Management, Leadership and Policy Analysis, and Public Administration.

Sandra Marín is the Regional Director specializing in international trade and technology commercialization, community and industry engagement alongside current doctoral studies in leadership and policy analysis. She is well-known as a partnership builder in domestic and international entrepreneurial ecosystems of the America's SBDC Network and the International Business Innovation Association.

Her broad background also encompasses expertise and credentials as SBDC consultant, university professor, director for Kauffman FastTrac, SBDC Global and Lean LaunchPad programs, as well as extensive experience as entrepreneur and business owner.

Government Contracting Consultants

Mike Bell, Lt Colonel ret

Mike Bell, Lt Colonel ret.

Expertise: Government Contracting Services; Women, Minority and Veteran Certification

Mike Bell provides government contracting services through the Florida Procurement Technical Assistance Center (Florida PTAC) to help businesses prepare, research and bid on government contracts. With more than 40- year career experience that includes procurement in both the public and private sectors, he is knowledgeable, experienced and eager to assist you in making selling to the government less complicated and more profitable. He is also a highly sought after government procurement presenter and trainer at major business conferences.

Mr. Bell's business start-up and Fortune 25 background working with pharmaceutical and high technology operations and production includes planning, procurement, engineering and employee training. As an Army Lieutenant Colonel, he served as Faculty Director for the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College.

Carole Hart, MA

Carole Hart, MA

Expertise: Government Contracting Services; Women, Minority and Veteran Certification

Carole Hart provides government contracting services through the Florida Procurement Technical Assistance Center (Florida PTAC) to help businesses prepare, research and bid on government contracts. She is knowledgeable, experienced and strives to make selling to the government less complicated and more profitable. In addition to working with the government sector, she has twenty-five years of experience in the private sector, working in the aerospace procurement industry and as a Subcontracts Manager. She has worked with commercial airline suppliers and major subcontractors for commercial and federally let contracts.

Ms. Hart has a Business Administration degree, a Master's degree in Counseling from New York University, and holds a Department of Veteran Affairs Certification as a Veteran Certification and Verification Program Counselor.

Consultants

Anil Change, MBA

Anil Chang, MBA, CGBP, EDFP

Expertise: Business Continuity, International Trade, Export Market Planning

Anil Chang is a Certified Business Consultant and our Operations Manager at the Florida SBDC at Florida Atlantic University. As a Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP), Anil Chang assists clients in expanding their markets via international trade. Well versed in export documentation, working with clients and suppliers internationally and domestically, his background includes procurement and logistics management for a privately held international trade company. Mr. Chang is also a Certified Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP).

Mr. Chang received his Masters of Business Administration degree from Florida International University and a Bachelor's degree from Florida Atlantic University.

Parbatee Change, MBA, CGBP

Parbatee Chang, MBA, CGBP

Expertise: International Trade, Export Market Planning, Quality Management Systems, Strategic Audits

Parbatee Chang is a Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP) providing assistance in market expansion via international trade. She is in high demand as a respected expert in quality management systems, accreditation, quality audits, developer of export marketing plans for clients, and author of "Strategic Audits – A Necessity for Transforming Businesses," a Forward Reviews' five out of five-star rated publication. Ms. Chang is also a successful entrepreneur and former business owner.

Ms. Chang has served as Executive Director of the Trinidad & Tobago Bureau of Standards, Vice Chair of the Caricom Common Market Standards Council, and Board Member of the ISO General Council in Geneva. Consultant work with private and public sector industries in over thirteen countries includes the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Trade Organization/Technical Barriers to Trade Agreement. Her credentials also include Executive Certificate of Global Finance from Thunderbird School of Global Management, FastTrac Trainer and ISO 9000 Lead Auditor.

Gary Cole, MBA

Gary Cole, MBA

Expertise: Access to Capital, Buying and Selling Businesses and Franchises, Exit Strategy

As a Certified Business Consultant, Gary Cole assists clients in finance and loan package development. His extensive career includes serving as a National Bank Examiner with the United States Comptroller of the Currency where he examined National Banks in the Southeastern United States. He has also served as an Executive Vice President in charge of all lending activity in a three-bank holding company with 12 offices in South Florida.

Mr. Cole is also a successful entrepreneur and former business owner. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Management from Georgia Tech and an MBA in Finance from the University of Miami. Mr. Cole served in the Army National Guard for six years attaining the rank of Specialist E6.

Rafael Cruz, MBA, CGBP, EDFP

Rafael Cruz, MBA, CGBP, EDFP

Expertise: Strategic Planning, Branding, Marketing, Finance, Executive Development, Creative Economy, Non Profit Strategy, International Business

Rafael Cruz is a Certified Business Consultant specializing in economic development alongside strategic planning and leadership development of both for-profit and non-profit organizations. He is well-known in both Broward and Palm Beach counties for his commitment in developing strategic community partnerships in the economic development community.

His broad background also encompasses a career in corporate leadership, finance, marketing and branding, international business, and the creative economy.

Jim Deam

Jim Deam

Expertise: Marketing, Advertising, Media Strategy and Buying

James Deam is a Certified Business Consultant working with clients on a broad range of marketing and advertising projects. An accomplished writer, he is an expert in advertising, branding and media planning. His marketing background includes working with Proctor & Gamble, Toyota, Wendy's, IBM, AT&T, Auto Nation, the Florida Marlins and the Miami Dolphins.

His most significant accomplishment was securing the national sponsorship of Fox TV's "American Idol" and its text message voting component, which is widely credited with spurring the texting revolution in the U.S.

George Gadson, MA

George E. Gadson, MA

Expertise: Strategic Marketing, Finance, Non Profit Strategy, Creative Economy

George E. Gadson is a Certified Business Consultant specializing in working with creative economy entrepreneurs and non-profit organizations. He has over 20 years of management experience with large banking Institutions and small private and public corporations. He has worked in economic development as the former Vice President of Business Development at the Broward Alliance (currently the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance), the Principal Planner of Regional Economic Development for the South Florida Regional Planning Council, and the Associate Director for Business and Corporate Development at Florida Atlantic University.

Mr. Gadson is a business owner and one of Florida's most well-known and highly sought after artists. He has been commissioned to create works of art for many high profile events – including the White House Christmas Tree and the South Florida Super Bowl. He received his Master of Art in Education in 2008 from Brewer Christian College and Graduate School.

Betina Jean-Jacques, MPA, EDPF

Betina Jean-Jacques, MPA, EDFP

Expertise: Market Growth, Business Management, Economic Development

Betina Jean-Jacques is a Certified Business Consultant and she is also certified as an Economic Development Finance Professional and a Project Management Professional. Her background includes working as a Business Development Specialist for Career Source Broward and over 10 years of higher education experience with a focus on mentorship, youth empowerment, community growth and leadership roles.

Ms. Jean-Jacques has a Bachelor of Science in International Economy from Florida Atlantic University and an MPA from Texas Southern University in Houston, TX.

Debbie Lanford, MBA, CGBP

Debbie Lanford, MBA, CGBP

Expertise: International Marketing, Export Assistance, Market and Data Analysis

Debbie Lanford is a Certified Business Consultant specializing in export marketing, international expansion and growth strategies. She also teaches seminars on international trade and market research. Lanford works closely with the SBDC's strategic partners including Enterprise Florida and local U.S. Department of Commerce officers.

Lanford has a passion for analyzing both financial and market data to help clients etermine the best growth strategies. She is a Certified Global Business Professional (CGBP) and holds an MBA in International Business.

Jazmine Loiselle

Jazmine Loiselle

Expertise: Strategic Marketing and Branding, Digital Media Strategy, Web Development

Jazmine Loiselle is a Certified Business Consultant and our Communications Manager at the Florida SBDC at Florida Atlantic University. As a Certified Business Consultant, Ms. Loiselle assists her clients in strategic marketing and the online challenges businesses face in marketing their brand and creating engaging digital content. Her extensive marketing communications and design experience in diverse industries enables her to assist a variety of businesses in reaching their marketing goals. Her education includes a Bachelor of Science degree from UMass Amherst and graduate studies at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

In addition to running her own consultancy business, she's held creative technology positions with M.I.T., Apple Computer and Levi Strauss. She has also served as a founding faculty member of the first digital arts programs in Northern California, at San Francisco State University, the Academy of Art University and the College of Marin.

Jackie Ramirez, MBA

Jackie Ramirez, MBA

Expertise: Sales Growth, Business Management, Strategic Planning, Human Resources

Jackie Ramirez is a Certified Business Consultant assisting clients with strategic planning, business development and communications. She is a highly regarded speaker on the development of effective organizational working relationships through communications, a facilitator and a certified Emotional Intelligence (EI) coach.

Ms. Ramirez began her career with Zenger-Miller designing the merger of three competing sales forces and the realignment and mapping of a new customer relationship process. She has over 25 years of experience in organizational redesign, team design, and leadership development that encompasses the banking, high-tech, finance, publishing, manufacturing and services industries. She holds a Master's in Business Administration from Florida Atlantic University and an undergraduate degree in Economics from Inter American University in Puerto Rico.

Angel Rentas

Angel Rentas

Expertise: Access to Capital, Business Financing and Planning, Loan Development

Angel Rentas is a Certified Business Consultant specializing in finance and loan package development and is an expert in assisting small and medium sized businesses establish and grow their operations. He has 35 years of banking and finance experience as a bank officer and portfolio manager serving private and public corporations. Concentrating on finance, commercial lending and the SBA Guaranty Loan Program, he has served as vice president for several major local banks.

As a loan officer for the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) he covered disasters in Miami, Chicago, Los Angeles and Sacramento under the SBA Disaster Loan Program. He has also worked as a Business Financial Analyst with the Office of Minority Business Enterprise, the National Economic Development Association and the Hialeah Dade Development (HDDI), Inc. Mr. Rentas graduated with an Accounting Degree from the Harford Institute of Accounting concentrating in Business Administration.

Teri Takahashi

Teri Takahashi

Expertise: Business Planning and Management, Accounting

Teri Takahashi is a Certified Business Consultant and our Business Manager at the Florida SBDC at Florida Atlantic University. She oversees the budget and records function of the SBDC operations. She also works with clients to develop business plans for start-ups and existing companies. Prior to joining the Florida SBDC Ms. Takahashi owned her own successful property management company.

Past roles include serving as the Associate Director for Finance and Administration where she was directly responsible for managing over 16 accounts, keeping the Florida SBDC at FAU's budget lean and balanced. She has also worked with the Florida SBDC Network headquarters to implement financial reporting policies that all centers now utilize. Ms. Takahashi holds an Accounting degree from Florida Atlantic University.