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Board of Directors

 

 

Nicole Coratti

Nicole is a professional in the field of social work and a self-advocate with extensive experience empowering individuals with disabilities to advocate for themselves. She has a Bachelor of Science in Social Work from the University of Central Florida. Her skills include public speaking, facilitating groups and workshops, and connecting individuals to resources. She uses a person-centered, culturally competent approach to assisting clients. In addition to serving on ROOF’s Collier Board of Trustees, Nicole currently volunteers for several organizations, including Kiwanis, Florida Developmental Disabilities Council, StarAbility Foundation, and Naples Community Hospital. These organizations are close to her heart and she enjoys using her knowledge and skills to help her community. Previously Nicole worked with Youth Haven as an in-house case manager, where she assisted the organization with implementing a therapy dog program and created individualized resource referrals for clients. Nicole is also an artist, writer, and blogger. She is an up-and-coming radio host of a show called The View from the Chair, which is broadcast on WGCU from the Florida Gulf Coast University campus, through the radio reading program.

 

 

Richard Stevens

 

 

Victoria Gauze

Victoria Gauze is a passionate, servant leader and has extensive experience as a healthcare management executive assistant. For years, she has been a volunteer and advocate for the undeserved residents in Immokalee and surrounding areas. Mrs. Gauze concentrates her energies on giving back to her community by fulfilling her purpose to make a difference in someone’s life through listening, empowering or motivating. 

Gauze and her husband Verol reside in Immokalee, FL. She have two daughters and relishes her role as ‘Nana’ among her five grandchildren. Gauze sums up her life philosophy and purpose by reciting Maya Angelou, “Giving back to the world is the only way to thank the world for having what you have.”

Gauze serves as an active member of Rotary International District 6960, Board Member of Gift of Life Florida Rotary District 6960, and One By One Leadership. She is a Florida Certified Community Health Worker, a Florida Notary Public, member of the National Notary Association, and member of the International Association of Administrative Professionals. She is currently attending Florida Southwestern State College. 

Eddie Hall

Eddie Hall was born and raised on a farm in Michigan and moved to Florida at a young age. Eddie became a paraplegic at age 8 and was the first student in a wheelchair to attend his elementary, middle, and high schools. He received his AAS Degree in Computer Engineering from Polk State College in Lakeland.

Eddie is a 26-year retiree from Publix Supermarkets and continues to work part time at Home Depot as a Greeter. He is a resident of Lakeland, Florida and has a wife and three children. Committed to giving back to the community, Eddie is involved in various organizations that have paved the way for his involvement with ROOF. Currently, Eddie is on the Board of Directors for Florida Development Disabilities Council, Family Cafe, Florida Alliance of Assistive Services and Technology (FAAST), President of Florida Self-Advocates Network’D (SANDS), and is a Commissioner of the Lakeland Housing Authority.

Max Hatch 

At age 20, Max Hatch is ROOF’s youngest statewide Board member, brought on to represent younger people who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. Max himself has received more than 30 medical diagnoses, but that doesn’t stop him from being a vibrant, active member of the community. Special Collier County Public Schools programs provided the opportunity for Max to work as a greeter at Publix and volunteer at Paragon Pavilion, directly assisting customers. Max graduated from Naples High School several years ago. Max is well known for his positivity and sharing his “Never give up” mantra.

 

 

Arizona Jenkins

Arizona Jenkins is a very positive and caring individual. He was born with cerebral palsy and is “partially paralyzed” on his left side. He leads an independent life, using a motorized wheelchair. Arizona stays connected on-the-go with a cell phone and Bluetooth receiver in his right ear.

He is a tireless advocate for people with disabilities at the local, state, and national levels. He is the President and Treasurer of New Horizon Support Group, Inc., which he founded in 2007.

Arizona serves on the HARTLINE ADA Committee, the Hillsborough County Children’s Committee, the Florida Self-Advocacy Alliance, Florida Self-Advocates Network’D (SANDS), and the USF Community Inclusion Center. He volunteers as a mentor for children with disabilities at LaVoy Exceptional School and Booker T. Washington Elementary School. Serving as a model patient, Arizona teaches third-year medical students at USF how to treat and communicate with people with disabilities as patients.

 

 

Deborah Kays

Debby Kays has a son with autism and is a realtor with Keller Williams Realty in Naples. In addition to the real estate business, Debby and her husband Terry started Tigertoes Herbs and Teas LLC in 2015. Selling herbal teas grown on their 5 acre farm in Buckingham (Ft. Myers). Debby is the former Chair of Creating a Future for Adults with Autism and Adonis Autism. She and her husband spearheaded Osprey Village in Naples which was a co-housing project designed to create community living opportunities for people with disabilities. She remains passionate about inclusive housing for people with disabilities. Debby’s son, Walter, lives in a group home in Tampa because she couldn’t find a home in Southwest Florida that could serve his behavioral needs.

 

Jesse Larsen

Jesse Larsen holds an MBA in Finance from Florida Gulf Coast University with 12 years of experience in the banking industry. He serves as Vice President, Business Banking Credit Manager at Florida Community Bank in Naples. Jesse was elected in 2018 to the Collier County Board of Trustees for Residential Options of Florida. Jesse will combine his knowledge and experience to support the financial goals for the organization. A major focus will be the development of relationships to advance the mission of ROOF in our community. His passion to serve includes mentoring at the Children’s Network of Southwest Florida, as well as coaching basketball for the YMCA and flag football at Fleischman Park.

 

Dr. Lou Traina, CFRE

Dr. Lou Traina has served in public and private nonprofit enterprises in Southwest Florida for more than 27 years and is well-known throughout the community as an expert in the field of major gifts.

Lou has led several major gift campaigns for Florida SouthWestern State College, Hodges University, and the Diocese of Venice. Among his many accomplishments, Lou secured the philanthropic naming of the Suncoast Credit Union Arena, Hodges University, three academic schools, and more.

His passion for fundraising serves as a vehicle for enhancing the presence of nonprofits and allowing organizations to achieve their missions. In addition to his fundraising expertise, he is an experienced administrator and effective community leader.