Chet Hurwitz (Board Chair): Chet is an attorney, business advisor, and former PwC partner and IBM executive with over 35 years of experience advising businesses on a wide variety of strategic, financial, and human resource issues. He has advised large employers on the business advantages of hiring employees with autism and related conditions and is a frequent speaker and panelist on this topic. Chet has also played a key role in enabling the significant growth of a nonprofit that employs adults on the autism spectrum.
Bob Goodwyn (Vice-Chair): Bob is highly experienced business executive and has worked with some of the leading global consumer product brands. Bob is the President of Goodwyn & Goodwyn, Inc. which provides a global sales and marketing team to support Dooney & Bourke, Inc. He has worked with Dooney & Bourke, a large manufacturer of high-end fashion accessories, for thirty-four years. Bob is Chairman of the Board for a Georgia nonprofit which provides residential options, social activities, and employment support for adults with disabilities. He and his wife, Barbara, have an adult son on the autism spectrum and have lived in metro Atlanta for 35 years.
Joy Taylor (Treasurer): After beginning her career in corporate litigation at Carlton Fields in Tampa, Joy is now the Chief Administrative Officer of Polaris Spine and Neurosurgery, where her passion and strategic vision propelled a small, traditional medical practice to become the leading provider of spine care in Atlanta, more than tripling revenues and launching a surgery center. When confronted by a lack of meaningful options for her son’s education, she started The Cloverleaf School in conjunction with a few other families. Begun as an elementary school for neurodiverse learners, it has flourished and expanded to include a middle school program.
Sara Barron (Secretary): Sara has been creating customized curriculum materials to address the academic, social, and independent living needs of persons on the autism spectrum for over 20 years. She began her career in Boston as Director of Marketing for a nonprofit that enabled persons with disabilities and other disadvantages to transition to meaningful employment in the private sector. She and her husband have an adult son with autism and have been deeply engaged for several years in the issues related to developing suitable employment opportunities for persons on the autism spectrum.
Tracey Figurelli: Tracey is currently Executive Vice President of Integrated Solutions at RGP Consulting. She is responsible for developing the strategic vision of the company’s service offerings and building the infrastructure to deliver. Key deliverables have been building scalable and sustainable teams across the globe to deliver consistent service. She holds an MBA in Finance, combined with 23 years of technology experience. She has a longstanding personal interest in the creation of opportunities for adults with autism and other developmental disabilities.
Cindy Jagielski: Cindy has worked as a software developer in both the public and private sectors. She has been involved for over 20 years with several Atlanta organizations that support families of individuals with autism and other disabilities. As recent graduate of the Partners and Policy program, Cindy has a vast knowledge of government programs and other organizations that support these individuals and how to navigate their services.
Ray Johnson: Ray brings over 3 decades of leadership in the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Ray currently serves as the Senior Vice President, Business & Administrative Services, for BDI (Bobby Dodd Institute). He previously served as the Executive Director and CEO for the Autism Society of Georgia. Prior to his work in the non-profit sector, Ray held various leadership roles for technology companies that included McCaw Cellular / AT&T Wireless, AT&T and Cypress Communications.
Monica Thornton: Monica has more than 20 years of a successful business development, brand management, public relations, and a community engagement track record. She also has substantial experience in strategic planning, coaching, public speaking and staff management. Monica currently serves as the Vice President at Georgia Conservancy, a non-profit whose mission is to protect Georgia’s natural resources for present and future generations. Prior to joining Georgia Conservancy, Monica served as the Executive Director of Women In Technology (WIT) and as SVP/Chief Marketing and Development Officer at Piedmont Park Conservancy. She has also held leadership positions at United Way of Metro Atlanta, Fox 5 Atlanta, CBS Atlanta, WSB-TV and Georgia Public Broadcasting.
Monty Hamilton: Monty Hamilton is CEO of Rural Sourcing: the leading, domestic outsourced IT solution for Fortune 1000 companies. He is a sought-after speaker on the outsourcing and domestic sourcing topic and has recently been featured on CNBC, BBC, NPR radio and at various industry conferences including IAOP, Gartner, Digital Georgia and others. In addition, recent articles depicting Rural Sourcing’s innovative outsourcing model have appeared in Business Week, CNN Money magazine, CFO magazine, and CIO magazine. This is Monty’s second entrepreneurial startup venture after leaving Accenture in 1995. He joined together with four other colleagues to build a global consulting firm – Clarkston Consulting. Monty is active in the community and civic circles as well. He is on the Advisory Boards for Mobile Chamber of Commerce, the Bond Group and Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce. He is currently involved with the Special Olympics and is a former Board Chair for the Adaptive Learning Center. Monty holds an M.B.A. from the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University and a B.B.A. in business from Millsaps College.
Jacob Blaeser: Jacob was the founding Managing Director of Ventures ATL. Starting September 2020, Jacob transitioned to a position on the board as he enrolled in Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. Jacob graduated from the Georgia Institute of Technology with highest honors in the field of Industrial and Systems Engineering. During his time at Georgia Tech, he assumed a leadership role in a wide range of extracurricular activities including the role of Chief Justice of the Undergraduate Judiciary Committee. He also helped lay the foundation for a program at Georgia Tech that allows students with developmental disabilities to work towards a certificate of completion. Prior to joining Ventures ATL, Jacob worked at a management consulting firm focusing on Strategy, Sourcing, and Procurement Process Transformation. He combines a disciplined technical background with a passion to promote sustainable employment opportunities for adults with autism and developmental disabilities.