MWSBE Citizen’s Advisory Committee

The Minority, Women, and Small Business Enterprise (MWSBE) Citizen’s Advisory Committee (CAC) explores strategies for engaging and empowering MWSBEs to meet goals identified in the Economic Development Strategic Plan. This citizen-led committee provides critical input, oversight, and transparency toward OEV’s MWSBE goal attainment, and will form subcommittees and a task force to determine milestones and deliverables associated with the Tallahassee-Leon County Disparity Study.

Members

Tracey Cohen

Tracey Cohen

MWSBE CAC Chair
Analorena Melendez

Analorena Melendez

Wayne E. Mayo

Wayne E. Mayo

Ted Parker

Ted Parker

Fabiola Antoine

Fabiola Antoine

Lanisha Thornton

Lanisha Thornton

Kenneth Taite

Kenneth Taite

George Johnson, Jr.

George Johnson, Jr.

Frank W. Williams

Frank W. Williams

Christi Hale

Christi Hale

Brenda Williams

Brenda Williams

Tracey Cohen

MWSBE CAC Chair

Tracey Cohen is the President and CEO of Target Print & Mail, a Tallahassee-based printing, signs and mailing services provider. A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, she joined what was then Target Copy in 2004 after working for a market research firm in Atlanta for several years. Target Copy was founded in 1982 by Tracey's mother, Mayda Williams, who was ready to step back from the business. In 2009, Tracey bought the company from her mother, and succeeded her as President. Target Copy, now Target Print & Mail, has always been a woman-owned and operated company. Tracey serves on the boards of the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra, the Foundation for Leon County Schools, and Tallahassee Entrepreneurs Organization, and she is active in the Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce. She is married to Jeremy Cohen, who works with her in the business, and has two daughters, Molly & Paige.

Analorena Melendez

Bio coming soon!

Wayne E. Mayo

With a 20+ years of experience in the construction field Wayne E. Mayo is an expert at collaborating, unpacking ideas, and delivering creative and cost-effective solutions for his clients as President and Founder, of Southern Standard Construction. Wayne has served the construction industry as Chairman of the Board for the Associated Builders and Contractors of Florida. This association works tirelessly to grow, train, and protect the millions of workers deemed essential for the economic success of our great State, and Nation.

Ted Parker

As Ajax’s Director of Vendor Diversity and Community Outreach, Ted takes positive and creative steps beyond the ordinary to increase the business opportunities for Minority and Women Business Enterprises.  His commitment is to maximize M/WBE participation through the development of mutually beneficial business relationships with the various M/WBE organizations, sub-contractors, suppliers, and vendors. Ted has 39 years of experience in the industry which includes working as a Superintendent, Project Manager, marketing, as well as being the President of a general contracting firm.

Fabiola Antoine

She is a Tallahassee resident who’s interested in understanding more about the housing needs and current gaps in home equity. She volunteers with the Junior League of Tallahassee, and strives to be an effective contributor who’s engaged to learn & participate as a member of the Citizens Advisory Committee.

Lanisha Thornton

Lanisha is the owner of Runnin’ Buzz Bartending. She’s originally from Champaign, Illinois, but has been residing in Tallahassee, Florida for nearly 20 years. She is a mother, wife, and entrepreneur. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from Florida International University and her Associates degree in Paralegal Studies from Keiser University. Over the years, Lanisha had always been successful in planning events. Whether she was the bartender, host, or planner, she worked those events with great success and notoriety. In 2019, Lanisha was ready for a new life venture that was more entertaining. She’s known to be very passionate about mixing drinks, more so, bartending, so she achieved and managed to make it part of her profession. The same year, Lanisha was licensed to serve in Florida and Georgia and was certified to mix across the nation. Lanisha started her own business, Runnin’ Buzz Bartending, as a sole proprietor in the late year of 2019.  However, by January of the year 2020, she managed to establish Runnin’ Buzz Bartending Services, LLC, and is a Certified Minority & Women Owned business across the state of Florida. With her determination and passion for what she’s doing, Lanisha became even more inspired to not only mix and serve cocktails, but to also mix and serve mocktails (non-alcoholic mixed beverages), so that even kids and sober individuals can enjoy a good mixed. She wanted to show people that providing a bartending service is not just about serving alcohol. She aims to provide a service that offers a whole new level of fun, personal, and professional beverage catering experience. Lanisha has a proven record of experience in the public and private sectors.Her diverse work ethic and background have allowed her to maintain expertise in dealing with areas of personal, commercial, and business-related manners.  She has shown virtues that would illustrate her life journey both in leadership and service. Outside of managing and operating her business, she volunteers in the Leon County School District, and has been for more than 10 years. Lanisha has served on the Villas at Pine Forest Homeowners’ Association Board of Directors since 2014 and as president since 2016.  She is a founding member of the National Society of Black Wedding & Event Professionals, a member of both the Big Bend Chamber of Commerce and the Capital City Chamber of Commerce, the Going Places Coordinator of Women Wednesdays, a member of the DOMI Alumni, a dedicated participant of Working-Class Wednesday, and an At-Large member of the Minority, Women, & Small Business Enterprise Citizen’s Advisory Committee. For more information on Lanisha Thornton and her business Runnin’ Buzz Bartending Services, LLC, check out www.runninbuzzbartending.com

Kenneth Taite

Haggai Construction & Development Inc. is led by owner Kenneth Taite, who has over 16 years of formal training and field experience in the Design and Construction Industry.Prior to attaining his certification as a general and roofing contractor, Kenneth earned a B.S. degree in Architecture from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) and an M.S. degree in Building Construction and Design at the University of Florida.

George Johnson, Jr.

George Johnson, Jr. is originally from Little Rock, AR and moved to Tallahassee to attend the Florida A&M University. There he received his Master of Architecture degree, with his thesis focusing on Campus Squares as Public Space. George has been actively working in the Architecture and Construction industry for more than 15 years. He has worked on various projects throughout Florida and South Georgia, with a wide range of building types encompassing hospitality, health care, offices, residential, warehouses, and retail. He has always had a love for architecture and design, from an early age.George is one of the founders of Johnson + Milner, Inc., a local Minority Owned Structural Engineering Firm, and serves as the Vice President of Operations. In 2019, J+M was honored to be acknowledged as the 2019 Minority Enterprise of the Year by the Office of Economic Vitality and Big Bend Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week Committee which recognizes the diligent efforts and contributions of minority-owned firms in Tallahassee and its surrounding areas.He has been a frequent contributor to various community groups, most notably on the leadership team of the Tallahassee Component of American Institute of Architects (AIA), where he received the President’s Award in 2018-2021 and is a graduate of the Jacob Leadership Institute. He is also a served as a Leon County Council on Culture and Arts (COCA) Cultural Facilities Matching Grant Program expert panelist.

Frank W. Williams

Goals & Aspirations:
  • To make a positive impact on the lives of everyone I meet along this short path of life that the Lord Blesses me with.
  • Exercise daily as often as I can by reaching down and pulling someone up to help them be successful!
  • To transfer Florida Developers Inc to the next generation.
  • To travel to Australia and Antarctica to complete the “Continent Chase”!
Most Relevant Achievements:
  • Joint Venture Partner on the Renovation of the Department of Social Work Ware-Rhoney Building at FAMU
  • Joint Venture Partner on the Construction Frederick S. Humphries (FSH) Science Research Center (SRC)
  • Renovation of Strong & Jones Funeral Home
  • Completed the Site Work for the Leon County Joint Dispatch Center
  • Florida Developers is the longest running Minority General Contractor to have its doors open with continuous service 8-5, Monday through Friday except for holidays for over 40 years!
Boards or Committees Served or Serving (Short List)
  • Southside Rotary, Former President & Current Charter Member
  • Buffalo Soldiers Moter Cycle Club Current Charter Member
  • Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce
  • Saint Peter Primitive Baptist Board of Deacons
  • MWSBE Advisory Board
  • Blueprint 2000 Committee City of Tallahassee
  • Capital Area Community Action Agency
  • Legal Services of North Florida
  • National Association of Minority Contractors

Christi Hale

Ms. Christi Hale is from Tallahassee, FL.  She has one son, Chad Hale, a step daughter Ashley Hale (a step-granddaughter Emma), two (soon-to-be) stepsons, Blake and Logan and is engaged to be married to Brent Sparkman early next spring.Ms. Hale is an avid mountain biker and is currently training for "La Ruta;" a 3 day mountain bike race in Costa Rica.  The race stretches coast to coast and is known as the toughest mountain bike race on the planet, where the slogan is "the journey is the adventure."Ms. . Hale has a degree and license in Respiratory Therapy, but since has acquired a Certified Underground Utilities and Excavation License after finding a new love and passion for moving dirt.She began working for Hale "Trucking” in 1997 part time as part of her family's business.  Unforeseen circumstances lead Ms. Hale to the opportunity to purchase Hale Contracting in January 2004. The company was struggling financially and facing bankruptcy when purchased.  After reorganization, years of building relationships and successfully completing projects, Ms. Hale and her team turned Hale Contracting into a profitable site work company.Today, Hale Contracting is a certified MBE/DBE & SBE, averages 25-30 employees and specializes in heavy civil construction. Ms. Hale strives every day to make her company and life a positive "journey," not only for herself, but for all those that she comes in contact with.

Brenda Williams

Brenda Williams is an accomplished administrator with 33 years of experience in the housing industry. Ms. Williams is currently serving as the Executive Director of the Tallahassee Housing Authority (THA). Prior to joining THA, Ms. Williams was President of Smart, Inc and services included assisting the Board of Commissioners, Executive personnel, and local government officials in improving the delivery of affordable housing and supportive community services to their constituent populations. The services were customized for the particular Agency assigned and include on-site technical assistance, the development and delivery of training, professional technical writing services, management analyses, research, assessments, evaluations, seminars, and operational and management support. Ms. Williams also served as Chief of Staff for the New Orleans Housing Authority, Administrative Receiver for the Camden New Jersey Housing Authority and Executive Director for the St. Louis Housing Authority. Ms. Williams earned a M.A. Sociology/Social Work and a B.S. Sociology from Lincoln University, Jefferson City, MO.
Tallahassee Housing Authority is a public housing authority created pursuant to Chapter 421 of the Florida Statutes. THA is a dual program authority administering both a public housing program (ACC) and Housing Choice voucher Program sponsored by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). THA has multiple housing properties, as well as one LIHTC-only property. THA has approximately 2, 2014 Section 8 Vouchers and an ACC capacity of 641 in service. THA is a mission-driven public organization committed to changing the face and character of affordable housing by creating high performing, high quality housing using national examples of best practice mixed-use/mixed income development.