Board of Directors
Dr. Barbara Brenner was Director of Community Relations for the Mount Sinai Medical Center for 23 years and served as Mount Sinai’s liaison to organizations and leaders in the Northern Manhattan communities for East and Central Harlem. She was also an Associate Professor of Preventive Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai where she was a co-investigator of studies funded by the National Institutes of Health and the US Centers for Disease Control, testing interventions to prevent and control high rates of diabetes and stroke among Harlem residents, as well as the relationships between environmental exposures (chemicals, diet, physical activity), obesity, and early puberty in girls. Dr. Brenner holds a Master’s degree in Social Work from Hunter College School of Social Work, and a Doctorate in Public Health form Columbia University. She is a fellow of the New York Academy of Medicine and is a founding Board member of Harvest Home Farmers Market. She is also on the Board of Directors of several nonprofit community organizations serving East Harlem families and older adults.
Patrick Holder Principal and owner of Atepa Architect, LLC received his early post-secondary education at Syracuse University and the State University of New York at Buffalo. He completed his architectural studies at City University of New York. He graduated at the top of his thesis class, with degrees in both: Architecture, and Landscape Architecture. His dual degree is a major asset when dealing with diverse scope of works requiring design cohesiveness between siting, planning and design of built and non-built environments.
In 1996, Mr. Holder accepted a position as Senior Architect with a South African firm in Harare, Zimbabwe. This 4 year + foreign post provided Mr. Holder with valued international exposure, specifically the management of large-scale projects with limited resources, and fast-track construction programs. As Architect and Project Manager over the last 20 years he has developed, designed and/or managed a number of construction projects in New York and New Jersey with a specific focus in the Harlem Community.
Rhina Valentin “La Reina” is a Jane-of-all-trade in the arts and entertainment industry. Founder and CEO of La Reina Del Barrio, Inc. Rhina is a New York City born Latina of Puerto Rican descent sprinkled w with African, Indigenous and German Diaspora. She is a Mother, Television Personality, Comedienne, Writer, Dancer, Producer, Director, & Choreographer. She studied Liberal Arts at Manhattan Community College and is a graduate of The William Esper Studio Conservatory master’s program.
As a multiple award winning performance artist, Rhina has captured audiences with her humorous style, while tapping into realistic topics of Life. She has been featured on HBO in “Betty la Flaca” and in nationally syndicated commercials such as Bally’s & 1800-Flowers. For the past 8 years she has been the popular hostess as the infamous Cafe Con Leche Television personality for the award-winning talk show OPEN Friday on BronxNet TV. She also has a web-series named: “Rhina Gets Lean” currently in its third year that follows her steps exploring different methods to design a healthy lifestyle for her, her daughter and the Latino community.
Ms. Valentin has performed in some of New York’s most prestigious venues such as The World Famous Apollo, Lincoln Center Outdoors; the world famous Nuyorican Poets Café, the Comedy Store in LA and 100′s of off-Broadway venues throughout our beloved NYC. She has toured nationally to Universities throughout the United States.
Ms. Valentin is also a published author of “Breaking Grounds/Abriendo Caminos”; An Anthology of Puerto Rican Women writers. She currently serves as the beauty, brains and the bronze behind her rapidly growing media entertainment company La Reina Del Barrio, Inc.
With a love for her community, and the hope of providing the space of opportunity for individuals with an urban upbringing to be heard she hopes to make a difference in our society and the World!
Maria Douvas Orme
Maria Douvas Orme is a Managing Director in Morgan Stanley’s Legal & Compliance Division. She runs the legal group that covers Morgan Stanley’s Fixed Income Division, which is the firm’s global institutional sales and trading business that is comprised of interest rates (US treasuries, agencies, sovereign bonds, interest rate swaps, TBAs, and structured notes), credit (investment grade, high yield, distressed, and credit default swaps), foreign exchange, emerging markets, financing (repossessions and reverse repossessions), and securitized products. She represents Morgan Stanley on a number of industry committees, including at ISDA (the International Swap Dealers Association) and on the Financial Markets Lawyers Group, which is sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and sets best practices in the fixed income market with special emphasis on foreign exchange. She has been with Morgan Stanley since 2004. Prior to that, she was an Assistant General Counsel of AIG Trading Group Inc., a swap dealing subsidiary of American International Group Inc., and an associate at Stroock & Stroock & Lavan and Morgan Lewis & Bockius. She graduated with honors from Duke University with a BA in Economics (summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and a JD from Duke University School of Law.
Ryan Rugg is a Director at R3, spearheading North American Business Development for focused on asset managers and insurers. She is focused on building and empowering blockchain solution for her clients; improving processes and business models – while simultaneously working to expand relationships with regulators and other ecosystem participants.
She recently founded R3’s Centre of Excellence for distributed ledger technology (DLT) in the global insurance industry.
Prior to R3 Ryan worked for Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan where she had extensive experience in financial services covering a broad range of institutions including; insurance, hedge funds, banks and asset managers. Ryan started her career in Technology at Lehman Brothers, experiencing firsthand the inefficiencies in the legacy infrastructure and looks forward to collaborating to solve these issues, she is double major in Management Information Systems and Finance.