Our Board

Advisory Board Executive Committee:

Gary White, Chair
Gary White is the Associate Director of the Hillsborough County Anti Drug Alliance (HCADA), a non-profit, community- based organization working to end substance abuse and addiction in Hillsborough County through education, collaboration and advocacy. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health from the University of Tampa (UT) and his Master in Public Health – Public Health Practice from the University of South Florida (USF).

Gary completed 21 years as a military healthcare nurse before eventually becoming Certified in Public Health, a Certified Worksite Wellness Program Manager and a Tobacco Treatment Specialist employed with HCADA. In addition to a career in public health, Gary regularly supports local groups including the Military Affairs Council and WUSF public radio. He currently resides in Lutz, FL with his wife and two children. He can be contacted at gwhite@hcada.com.

Debra Foster, Vice Chair
Ms. Foster retired Air Force civilian with 36 years of federal service in the area of Acquisition Management and Leadership.

She served on the board of directors of PowerNet of Dayton and wants to continue her service for PowerNet of Tampa as vice chairman.

Marta Pearson, Secretary
Marta Varee Pearson has worked for more than 40 years as an informative, entertaining, dynamic Speaker, Trainer and Empowerment Coach. She has trained & coached psychologists & social workers; business executives & staff; teachers, school staff & administrators as well as Individuals, couples, foster & other parents.

She created an effective group treatment modality during her 14 years as a Trauma Recovery Therapist, made multiple expert appearances on national television programs and is an author of books on trauma recovery and personal growth. After residing in the Pacific-Northwest, New England, Border-South & the Mid-West she resides now in Tampa Florida.

With her Masters of Science in Law Enforcement and extensive experience working with prisoners, ex-offenders and their families she is excited to be working with others at PowerNet of Tampa to bring about opportunities and successes to citizens returning to Hillsborough County. Reach her at trainingwithmarta.com@gmail.com.

Andrew Ware, Treasurer
Mr. Ware is an Independent Business Consultant for Tampa Bay Black Business Investment Corp.  who states: “Luv what I do”.  I work with CEOs, to determine if they are ready to expand their businesses. I also attend Middle Schools and High Schools to speak with the young men, that are not sure of their future helping them to discover their purpose. I am living a dream.

My involvement with PowerNet, is to impact our community and inspire others to find their worth…

Advisory Board Members:

Brittney Frazier
Brittney Frazier is the Public Health Program Specialist at Allegany Franciscan Ministries. Allegany Franciscan Ministries, a Catholic organization, guided by the mission and rooted in the tradition and vision of the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany, is a catalyst for systemic change by committing resources and working collaboratively with others to promote physical, mental, spiritual, societal, and cultural well-being in communities served. Brittney is also an adjunct faculty member at St. Petersburg Community College. 

She is an alum of Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University and earned her Masters in Health Administration from the University of Central Florida.
Brittney supports the mission of PowerNet of Tampa Bay because she believes the return on investment to assist ex-offenders has a beneficial effect on the economy and communities in the Tampa Bay Area. She also understands that addressing the issues in the criminal justice system is complex and daunting, but she’s lives in faith and believe that another world is possible.


Alex Montaner

For over 30 years Mr. Alex Montaner has dedicated his life to helping young adults overcome the challenges of drugs, gangs, violence and poverty beginning his career at the historic Ste. Anne de Detroit Catholic Church as a youth minister and outreach worker to gang members and their families. From this beginning, he started creating and implementing youth driven mentoring and prevention programs for Detroit Public Schools and the Archdiocese of Detroit.

Alex is now focused on helping the homeless – specifically the homeless veteran population. He has taken his proven formula of job skill training and job placement skills and adapted it to a hard-hit population here in Central Florida. Grace Reintegration Services, Inc. is dedicated to assisting veterans and their families who are homeless and/or at risk of homelessness with access to housing, health and mental health care, career development and job placement. 

Alex is the proud recipient of several awards including:  a Presidential Commendation — President Clinton and was named as one of the “Ten Most Influential People” — Detroit Free Press. His work has been featured in a number of published books and articles including the NY Times, Washington Post and Reader’s Digest.  On television he has appeared on the “John Walsh Show, Dateline, Fox News National and Univision.

Lionel Shipman
Lionel Shipman is a Financial and Life Empowerment Consultant and speaker with Shipman Consulting. He facilitates seminars and workshops in the areas of financial literacy, business, banking and life skills for churches, businesses, high schools and colleges. He is an engaging speaker for conferences, panel discussions, assemblies, motivational sessions and other events. Lionel is also a radio show host (The Lionel Shipman $hape Your Finances Show on the CWR Talknetwork) and the author of a relationship communication book titled “Sacred Vows – the Knot or Not”.

His overall goal is to help people improve their financial outlooks and provide life lessons to help them live to the fullest. Website: Shipmanconsulting.com

Lionel is involved with PowerNet of Tampa because of its commitment and efforts in helping our communities, especially those who are entering back into society, thrive together.

Elaine Thomas