OUR TRIBE

Powerminds is a collaborative of seasoned consultant that are global thinkers. We’re a small tribe with big ideas. We’re modest people with monumental minds. Meet our tribe.

Margo Turner

Tribal Leader

Margo Turner

President & CEO

Margo is a seasoned business leader and facilitator with experience in education, consumer, business-to-business, and nonprofit environments across multiple industry sectors. She served as TAP/Statewide Director of Communications for the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office, where she developed strategies and implementation for the Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy framework, the Strong Workforce Program inception to implementation, and other communications and operational strategies.

I proudly support NAMI because I believe every mind deserves to be healthy.

As a serial entrepreneur, she has started, built and sold several companies. Margo is results driven, a collaborative thought leader, operates with a sense of urgency and has a passion for execution. She is a highly effective communicator at every level throughout an organization, and has exceptionally strong leadership skills. She specializes in successful implementation of initiatives through a results-oriented, analytical approach.

Walter Dario Di Mantova

Sr Strategic Advisor

Walter Dario Di Mantova

Walt Di Mantova has spent thirty years in workforce and economic development – but not the same year thirty times. He grew the extraordinary teams that built the US’s largest university corporate training center educating over 250,000 employees from Fortune 100 companies and unions in eleven countries. He’s helped transform – and improve — California’s Community Colleges the state’s second largest District and as Dean of Workforce Development for the Chancellor’s Office. Walt’s most proud of: creating unprecedented programs in occupational health and safety, continuous improvement (including global quality certifications) and adult workplace skills; steering a collaborative graduating 535 nurses and trained thousands of California state employees; and convening the courageous teams who were pioneers in web-based learning, public-private partnerships and using business methods in education.

I’ve enthusiastically dedicated my work life to one thing: trying to save lives, build jobs, disrupt poverty and reduce trauma through learning. Period.

His grant and contract track record: $100 million from dozens of State and Federal agencies and companies. Walt has been an: industrial ethnographer; internationally recognized expert, speaker and author on leadership and transformation; Strategic Advisor to the world’s foremost expert on large-scale innovation—and an education entrepreneur for decades. He has a B.A. summa cum laude, an M.A. from the University of Michigan and was a University of London Senior Scholar. He did a great job co-parenting his daughters and is an awesome cook.

Dr. Renah Wolzinger

Tribal Advisor

Dr. Renah Wolzinger

Dr. Renah Wolzinger is well-respected in the California community college system. She has served as a research associate in WestEd’s Health and Human Development Program where she mentored community college and career technical education (CTE) programs, and facilitated collaboration between multiple stakeholders in K-18 education. She has also served in the Division of Workforce and Economic Development at the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office as the statewide technical assistance provider for data tools and for the statewide CTE LaunchBoard data system.

Dr. Wolzinger currently serves as Saddleback College’s first dean of career pathways and dual enrollment. She has been a faculty member at Golden West College since 2004 teaching digital media, and served as department chair for digital media, digital arts, computer science, and design from 2012-2015 where she assisted the CTE dean with the redesign of CTE curriculum and pathways to align with current workforce needs. As if all of this was not enough, Dr. Wolzinger is a Grammy Award nominee and the president and founder of Renzone Music, a video and audio production services company, since 1994.

Dr. Wolzinger holds an Education Doctorate in higher education leadership from California State University, Fullerton, a Master of Arts in occupational studies from California State University, Long Beach, and a Bachelor of Science in bioengineering from University of California, San Diego.

Charlotte Freeman

Tribe Member

Charlotte Freeman

Charlotte is driven by a core belief in the potential of people. She has spent the last 10+ years helping individuals, organizations, and communities recognize and achieve their potential through her work in conflict resolution, human rights, education reform, workforce development, racial reconciliation, leadership development, and social-impact organizational effectiveness. Her career has taken her from the fields of post-war Bosnia to the hallways of universities in the South Caucasus and from the mountains of rural India to the segregated streets of cities across the United States.

Great leadership is about recognizing the potential in others - even when others can't see it in themselves - and then enabling them to reach beyond that potential.”

A serial problem-solver, Charlotte balances her analytical mind with her intense drive for results. Having worked, lived, and traveled to over 50 countries, she is adept at helping diverse groups of people collaborate effectively. She has applied these skills at the European Union, Open Society Institute, NATO, Council of Europe, Search for Common Ground, Initiatives of Change, Goodwill Industries, and Rocketship Education.

 Charlotte will complete her Doctorate of Education in Organizational Leadership at Pepperdine University in fall 2017. She holds an M.A. with distinction from the University of Essex in Human Rights and Cultural Diversity, a graduate certificate in Genocide Studies from the University of Toronto, and an honors B.A. with distinction from the University of Delaware in International Relations and Vocal Performance.

Gina Lujan

Tribe Member

Gina Lujan

Gina Lujan is the Founding CEO of Hacker Lab, Code For Hood, an innovative leader and a social entrepreneur. The Hacker Lab in Sacramento California is recognized as one of the foremost maker spaces in the country. In August of 2016 she visited the White House to participate in The Nation Of Makers closed session convening. Gina has dedicated herself to the the development of businesses and communities that serve to fill gaps in education and contribute to workforce development efforts by working alongside local government and philanthropic organizations.

I absolutely love people, entrepreneurship, and innovation. I build communities and make things and I believe community innovation spaces can be huge catalysts and economic drivers for any region. Plus I just dig cool technology!””

With more than 18 years of technology experience, Gina is a repurpose maker who is shaping economic development by assessing needs of communities and solving critical problems; such as bringing affordable ultra high-speed broadband to rural areas. She has been an innovation consultant for Northrup Grumman, Intel, AT&T, SMUD, Toyota and VSP as well as for cities across Northern California.

Recently, Gina led programs to create Maker Space badges for California’s 113 Community Colleges. She received a national award for Latina of Excellence In Information Sciences and Technology in 2015 and the prestigious Women Who Mean Business Award in 2013. Her newest endeavor is Code For Hood, a nonprofit aimed at educating disadvantaged youth by way of Hackathons and STEM related workshops.

Dara Westling

Tribe Member

Dara Westling

Dara Westling believes we can all do well by doing good. She wears many hats as a consultant, organizational leader, small business owner and life-long learner. A common theme is catalyzing individuals and organizations to make positive change in their communities and themselves.

Recent consulting roles have focused on accessing impact capital for large systems projects and she has also served as a founding executive director, helping young people learn the skills of innovation to address community challenges.

Young people have the wisdom to address the world’s problems. But they need equal opportunity. And we must listen.””

Dara previously served as Vice President at TechSoup, a social enterprise that matches change makers with $5.5B in tech donations and educational services in 190+countries. Key to organizational growth, Dara worked with corporate social responsibility, foundation and nonprofit partners to build alliances for impact worldwide. Dara oversaw large initiatives on behalf of TechSoup, its global network, and its local institutions in Poland and the U.K. and led initiatives in Eastern Africa, Europe and South America.

Dara’s experience spans education, technology and public sectors including the Consular Corps and U.S. Department of State.

She holds an MBA, MPIA, and an impact investing certificate. When she isn’t dreaming up new ideas with co-conspirators over a cup of tea, she’s learning from her young children.

Angela Allison

Tribe Member

Angela Allison

Tribe Member

Always active in team sports, Angela received her B.S. in Exercise and Sport Science-Athletic Training from Oregon State University. While working her way from her career in sports to education, she dedicated over 10 years to helping at-risk, underrepresented and marginalized students achieve in education as a mentor, tutor and life-skills specialist. These experiences sparked her passion to help students and led her to pursue her M.Ed. in College Student Affairs. Starting as a coordinator and transitioning to director of Upward Bound, she realized that making a difference to more students requires higher level administrative roles. Subsequently, she served as director of special grants and projects in the Central Valley Region and as Dean of Business and Career and Technical Education (CTE) in Orange County.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world: Indeed it's the only thing that ever has.

As a K-14 Statewide Career Pathways Technical Assistance Provider (TAP) under the California Community Colleges “Doing What MATTERS for Jobs and the Economy” initiative, Angela provided leadership, guidance and technical assistance at the local, regional and state levels to expand and improve Career Pathways and promote student success. The experience continued to nurture her passion for helping students to obtain employment and increased wages through certification programs, and led her to become co-founder of 2CPR. She is an expert at CTE training, grant management compliance, project management and reporting, and building relationships to foster student and school program success.

Sable Cantus

Tribe Member

Sable Cantus

Tribe Member

Sable Cantus, instructor, technical trainer, musician, podcaster, expert IT technician, and coffee lover; has been problem solving,  and implementing technology solutions in higher education since 2005. After completing his M.A. at CSULA, Sable has worked with statewide  committees in both the CSU and Community College systems on projects ranging from network infrastructure, to distance learning, and the Strong Workforce project.

Sable’s colleagues have said, “he’s got a solution for every problem.”  Sable is able to creatively tackle tough business problems in departments such as CalWORKs, EOP&S, and IT.

Every young person should have the opportunity to wrIte, explore, and express themselves; that's why I support WriteGirl.”

In the classroom, students describe him as “open, innovative, and able to make the material relatable.”  On a project team, Sable is known for meeting  deadlines and  clearly communicating  with stakeholder and team-members.

Sable has worked with a non-profit, Writegirl, managing donor, mentee, and volunteer data since 2005.

Sable Cantus served honorably in the U.S. Army.

 

Steve Morales

Tribe Member

Steve Morales

Steve has over 13 years experience in working in multiple high growth sector industries via web and traditional print designs. Prior to Powerminds, he served as the creative director for a network marketing company and was responsible for development and maintenance of the website, consultant portal and all graphic design. He is an expert in Photoshop, HTML and CSS, WordPress, audio and video editing. Steve’s client list includes Vegas Casino properties, Hospitals, UFC, UFC gyms, California Restaurant Association, Zrii and Milgard windows, and other various restaurants and clothing brands.

Beth Ballaro

Tribe Member

Beth Ballaro

Beth Ballaro
Owner / Level2Creative Digital Marketing Agency

Having seen both sides of the agency/client relationship and worked with budgets from a shoestring to multi-million dollars, I’m well placed to help people get the most from every penny they have. And, that’s what I now do. I help ambitious growing businesses make their marketing pay. There are many types of marketing consultants – strategic thinkers, day-to-day project managers, general doers, or specialists. There are some blurred lines between these types, but it’s unusual to find someone who is genuinely brilliant at all four. That’s where I come in. I’m a strategic thinker and insanely creative… and I love it!

Truly powerful people are not concerned about their POWER, but about being in a position of being able to EMPOWER

It takes a lot of listening, to understand a company and what they’re trying to achieve. What I do best is bring together the experience I have, and the knowledge I’ve accrued, to work out what the company needs to do to develop a watertight marketing operation that delivers sustainable profits. These activities range from working out how to present their products, to implementing the right marketing tools, to configuring a set of marketing activities to skyrocket their business.

Ed Bennett

Tribe Member

Ed Bennett

Ed is an active member of the law enforcement community with over 25 years of experience in both civilian law enforcement and the U. S. Military.  Ed is a SWAT Sniper and a member of the California Association of Tactical Officers.  He has worked in some of the highest levels of government commanding anti-drug and counter-terrorism task forces for the State of California and the U.S. government.  Ed has been a security consultant to private industry since 2006, assisting large and small businesses as well as the healthcare industry with solving complex safety and security issues with an emphasis in physical security and security counter measures.

David Oates

Tribe Member

David Oates

David Oates is a 20-year marketing and public relations veteran who holds extensive experience in developing as well as executing successful and measurable programs for a wide range of agency, corporate and government organizations.

Prior to founding Stalwart Communications in 2006, David was Marketing Director for Financial Profiles, a 35-year old financial planning software company based in Carlsbad, Calif., where he directed all marketing-related strategies and programs, including lead generation, partner/reseller, customer/sales support, brand enhancement, public relations, competitive analysis and market strategy/situation analysis programs. He also draws great strength from his days as a U.S. Navy combat and public affairs officer, where he honed his skills in leadership and corporate communications in various forward deployed operations, including Haiti, Hong Kong and the Middle East.

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” - Maya Angelou

David is an accredited public relations (APR) expert affiliated with the Public Relations Society of America, and serves as the Chairman of the Board of Advisors for Operation Homefront, California as well as on the Board of Directors for Rotary Club of San Diego. He received his MBA from San Diego State University’s Executive Program in 2004 and his bachelors of arts from the University of Maryland in 1991.

Phyllis H. Sarkaria

Tribe Member

Phyllis H. Sarkaria

Phyllis H. Sarkaria is a human capital executive, coach, and adviser with almost 30 years of leadership experience. Prior to launching a consulting practice, she was Vice President, Human Resources for Quidel Corporation, a leading manufacturer of medical diagnostic tests, where she oversaw the company’s global HR strategy and programs for over 12 years. Before joining Quidel, she held several leadership positions with Sempra Energy, including Director, Corporate Learning & Research and Director, Human Capital Solutions.  In addition to her HR expertise, Phyllis has held financial analysis, strategic planning, and government affairs roles, approaching leadership and ethics issues as an outcome-driven practitioner.

Phyllis earned a BBA in Finance and an MBA, both from Texas Tech University and an MA in Ethical Leadership from Claremont Lincoln University.  She holds SPHR, SHRM-SCP, CCP, and CEBS certifications, taught Extension courses at the University of California, San Diego for almost a decade, and has spoken on a variety of topics at regulatory, leadership, and human resources forums.  She has served on the boards of director for Performing Arts Workshop and the Equinox Center and is a graduate of Leadership California and Leadership America.