Senior-level hires and promotions for the week of July 18, 2016



Gloria M. Fernandez has been named senior vice president and chief lending officer of Power Financial Credit Union. She previously was at Sabadell United Bank, where she was SVP, commercial/business lending since 2005. Fernandez has a degree in finance from Florida Atlantic University.


At Broward College:

▪ Marielena DeSanctis will lead the A. Hugh Adams Central Campus as campus president. Previously she was vice president for student affairs and academic affairs. DeSanctis’ degrees include a Ph.D. in educational leadership from FAU.

▪ Avis Proctor has assumed the role of vice president of academic affairs in addition to her current role as president of North Campus. Procter’s degrees include a doctorate in higher education from Florida International University.

▪ Rolando Garcia, Ed.D. will be campus president of the Judson A. Samuels South Campus. He most recently was interim South Campus president. Garcia’s degrees include an Ed.D. in higher education administration from Florida International University.

Monsignor Terence Hogan, dean of the School of Theology and Ministry at St. Thomas University, has also been named vice president for mission. In that role, he’ll help integrate the university’s mission elements into all segments of the institution. He has a bachelor of philosophy and a master of divinity from St. Vincent de Paul Seminary; and a doctorate in sacred liturgy from the Pontifical Institute of Liturgy in Rome.


Federico Balestrazzi has joined the newly opened Miami office of Thornton Tomasetti as a vice president in its façade engineering practice. He’ll be practice leader for the mid-Atlantic South region. Balestrazzi had previously operated his own engineering consulting firm in Miami, FOURZERO LLC. He has a bachelor’s in industrial design and architecture from the Politecnico di Milano in Milan, Italy; a master’s degree in civil engineering from Lamar University in Texas; and an MBA from Babson College.


Craig Hill has joined Engage PEO as chief financial officer. The company provides HR outsourcing solutions to small and mid-sized businesses across the U.S. Hill most recently was senior vice president, benefits, of CoAdvantage. He has a bachelor’s in accounting from the University of Florida.


Deborah Baker-Egozi will join the Miami office of Greenspoon Marder as a shareholder. She previously was at Lipscomb, Eisenberg & Baker in Miami. She has concentrated her law practice in the area of commercial litigation, with a focus in business and real estate litigation. She sits on the Florida Bar Board of Governors and was the 2014-2015 president of Miami-Dade Florida Association of Women Lawyers. Baker-Egozi has a bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University and a law degree from Northwestern University.

Adriana Kostencki has joined Berger Singerman as a partner on the Government and Regulatory Team to lead a new business immigration law practice and will be in the Miami office. Most recently, she was a shareholder at Moreno Kostencki, P.A. Kostencki has a J.D. from the University of Miami. She is president of the Venezuelan American National Bar Association.


Alec J. Rosen has been named vice president of community engagement at Jewish Community Services of South Florida. Previously, he was marketing manager at Chapman Partnership. Rosen has a BBA in marketing from Pace University and an executive master’s in nonprofit management from Georgetown.


David McElwee has been named vice president of business development for the Orange Bowl Committee. He will be responsible for management oversight of the ticket sales and service and partnerships departments. His primary focus will be on the generation of new ticket sales and sponsorships from the South Florida community, and through strategic partnerships. Previously, he was with the Washington Nationals for six years, most recently as vice president of ticket sales, service and operations. McElwee has a bachelor’s in business and marketing management from the University of Delaware.


Alison Klapper León has joined Dragonfly Expeditions and its sister company Margaritaville Adventures as general manager. She will also oversee Tropic Moon Media, the documentary and book-publishing arm of the company, and Green Heron Gifts. She previously was vice president of new initiatives at WorldCity.

This column lists high-level promotions of director and above of executives based in South Florida. These announcements are for full-time, paid positions. Send items, including previous job; educational background; and jpegs of head shots, to

Mover’s spotlight

Name: Gloria Pelaez

New job: Dean for the School of Arts and Education at St. Thomas University. Beginning this week, Pelaez will oversee the school’s undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs in education, as well as its programs in communication arts.

From: Pelaez served as the director of the Office of Teacher Education Accreditation at the University of Miami.

Also: She was director of the School of Education at Miami-Dade College and was a tenured faculty member and TESOL Department chair at Barry University. She also served as coordinator of TESOL programs and faculty at Florida Atlantic University where she developed the first elementary education with ESOL endorsement program in the state of Florida. Her curricular integration model continues to serve as a guide for colleges, universities and school districts across the state. Her extensive résumé also includes time in the classroom in Miami-Dade County Public Schools.

Education: She has a doctorate in curriculum and instruction from Florida Atlantic University, and a master’s in TESOL from the University of Miami. She completed her undergraduate studies at Bryn Mawr College and graduated with a bachelor’s in comparative literature/Spanish/English from Pennsylvania State University.

Best advice she ever received: The best advice I ever received came from my father-in-law: Work hard, help others, and don’t worry about who gets the credit. When a task is completed, we all win.

Choices for Spotlight are made from promotions sent to