Natalia Dominguez Buckley has over 20 years of experience in the public finance and economic development sector in the US and Internationally.
Natalia joined Santander Bank in May 2016 as a Vice President in Commercial Lending/Business Banking for the Metro Philadelphia area. Then she became the Community Partnership Manager for the Mid-Atlantic Region (Pennsylvania, South Jersey and Delaware). Natalia promotes capital access and provides effective financial education programs to underserved communities as part of Santander, N.A.’s Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) and Corporate Social Responsibility programs.
Prior to Santander, Natalia was the Regional Director for the Office of International Business Development (OIBD), PA Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) focused on trade and investment for the Southeast Region (Philadelphia, Montgomery, Chester, Delaware and Buck counties) of PA based in the Philadelphia Governor’s Regional Office. She also worked at the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC) a quasi-governmental entity as a Project Manager in the Finance Division. She managed more than 80 active multi-billion dollar projects and over $250 million of the Commonwealth “Redevelopment Assistant Capital Project” (RACP grants) for the Greater Philadelphia. In addition, she was part of the Tax Exempt Municipal Bond team issuing debt on behalf of the City of Philadelphia, Charter Schools, and Institutions as well as part of the New Market Tax Credit team.
Before PIDC, Natalia worked at the University of Pennsylvania at the Treasury Office as a Financial Analyst. She assisted the Associate Treasurer and CFO of the University in issuing and managing the University’s multi-billion dollar debt & liquidity, the cash flow and coordinated the University’s Finance and Budget, Accounting and Compliance Trustees Committee meetings and reports. Natalia holds a BA in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, PA) and a MGA in Public Finance from the Fels Institute of Government-University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, PA). She also proudly serves in multiple non-profit boards such as Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Junior Achievement of South Central PA, Finanta, a CDFI nationwide renowned micro-lending organization and Community First Fund of Lancaster PA.
In addition to her board services, Natalia is a Committee Member of the Regional Women’s Network for the MidAtlantic at Santander Bank, a newly formed Women’s Network where she assists and mentors Santander Women to develop and empower them and their allies within the communities they live, work, and serve. Natalia is a native of Argentina and currently resides in the Northwest section of the City of Philadelphia with her husband, daughter and mother.
Rebeca Cruz-Esteves has devoted her career to creating a diverse, equitable, inclusive, and prepared workforce through partnering on initiatives with the nonprofit, government, and corporate sectors.
Currently, Cruz leads Communications & Professional Networks at the Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. In addition to serving as a sergeant in the U.S. Army Pennsylvania National Guard she also serves as President of Philadelphia’s League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) Council, the oldest and most respected Hispanic civil rights organization in the U.S. Cruz also sits on the Philadelphia Red Cross Leadership Council, Temple University’s Human Resource Connect Board, Concilio’s Event and Culture Advisory Committee, and Thomas Edison High School’s Stakeholders Advisory Committee.
Cruz holds a Bachelor of Business Administration with a concentration in Human Resource Management from Temple University’s Fox School of Business.
Jennylee Ramos currently works as the Assistant Director for Programs and Marketing in the Office of Student Activities at Temple University. Jennylee Ramos is a proud two time alumnae of Temple University. She earned her Bachelor's in Business Marketing from the Fox School of Business. In 2018, Jennylee Ramos completed her Masters in Tourism and Hospitality Management from the School of Tourism and Hospitality.
In her role as the Assistant Director for Programs and Marketing, she manages all major programming for the Temple University student body. Before this role, she worked and interned with several organizations focused on diversity and inclusion. As the Program Coordinator for the African-American Chamber of Commerce of PA, NJ, and DE, where she strategically crafted events. She established a monthly program, “Tech-Tuesday", that connects young professionals and business owners of marginalized communities with tools to help propel their business and career goals.
As the Events Officer for Prospanica, she has volunteered to develop and execute transformative programs and initiatives for people of color. These initiatives provide networking opportunities and resources to help advance marginalized populations. Jennylee Ramos long-term goal is to build events that enhance communities and create lifelong connections.
Yocasta Lora is the Associate State Director for Community Outreach at AARP Pennsylvania. She leads program development and implementation, volunteer management, local advocacy, and strategic partner relationships in order to create accessible and safe communities for people of all ages.
Lora has been recognized for her accomplishment in building strategic alliances and community and economic development. Prior to joining AARP, Lora was the Director of Programs for the Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. She managed relationships with key partners such as Philadelphia Commerce Department, University of Pennsylvania, Goldman Sachs, 10,000 Small Businesses. In this role, she supported the two largest programs in the Chamber: the Small Business Development and Education and the Professional Mentoring Network Programs. This program's focused on strengthening businesses in the Greater Philadelphia Region through revenue generation and local job creation.
Lora currently serves as a board member for The Merchants Funds and on the City of Philadelphia Office of Transportation and Infrastructure Systems (oTIS) Vision Zero Education Subcommittee, and the Greater Philadelphia Bicycle Coalitions-Vision Zero Alliance. Previous services included Comhar Board Member, Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of commerce- Latina Leadership Advisory Board, Councilwoman Cherelle Parker Retirement Security Task Force, Philadelphia Minority Enterprise Development Week (MED WEEK), University of Pennsylvania Economic & Inclusion - Procurement, and the Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney Transition Team. She is also the founder of the Dominicanos in the Delaware Valley professional group. Lora received the City of Philadelphia Next Generation of Women Leaders: Rising Stars, Business and Professional Women (BPW) – 2017 Professional of the Year Award, the 2017 International Community Service Award and holds a Bachelor of Business Administration, (B.B.A) degree from La Salle University.
Melinda Sánchez Donio, a Camden, NJ native and former White House Appointee, has been actively involved in community development and ministry in the Greater Philadelphia Region for over 20 years.
Melinda was recently named co-Executive Director of the 1st Responders Children’s Foundation, working to enhance visibility and increase the support that the organization is able to provide to the children and families of fallen and injured 1st responders across the country. Additionally, she is the Program Manager for the Council of Urban Professionals (CUP) Leadership Institute. As Program Manager, Melinda is responsible for the daily operations of CUP’s Leadership Institute, including the curation of program curriculum, coordinating and executing professional development programming, trainings and leadership opportunities as well as oversee CUP’s Seat of Influence board matching program.
Prior to joining CUP, Melinda was appointed by the White House in 2015 to serve as Special Assistant to the Regional Administrator (RA) for the U.S. General Services Administration’s (GSA) Mid-Atlantic Region. GSA serves as the business arm of the federal government. As Special Assistant, Melinda worked closely with the RA, who acts as the executive for the region overseeing over 1,000 employees, manages and maintains approximately 800 owned and leased commercial buildings, representing 35 million square feet of real estate and procures over $4.3 Billion annually in goods, services, and information technology for federal agencies within the six Mid-Atlantic states as well as Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. Prior to joining GSA Mrs. Donio served as a National Programs Director and Training Coordinator for Esperanza, Inc., one of the largest Hispanic Faith-Based Evangelical networks in the United States, based in Philadelphia, PA.
Her strong faith, love of the creative and performing arts as well as community, has led her to work with several organizations and churches that foster leadership development through the creative arts among youth and young adults. Melinda is proud to have helped establish a faith-based international summer program in Liberia to combat prostitution among girls and young ladies and to use her skillset while traveling locally and internationally presenting workshops and vignettes on a myriad of topics including, creative expression, empowerment and faith.
As a strong proponent for her hometown of Camden, New Jersey, Mrs. Donio has served on several boards. In recent years she served as a Commissioner for the Camden Redevelopment Agency, on the Board of Trustees for LEAP Academy Charter School, the Board of Directors for the Cramer Hill Community Development Corporation and on the Salvation Army Kroc Center – South Jersey Advisory Board.
Melinda is an alumna from the University of Pennsylvania earning a BA in Urban & Environmental Studies in 2002 and a Masters in City Planning in 2003. She and her husband David recently moved to New Providence, New Jersey and is happy to call the Greater New York City Area home.
Amaris Hernandez is an Information Systems professional, working out of the Delaware Valley for over 13 years. Amaris is a Philadelphia native, and participated in the Pennsylvania Ballet for ten years in productions throughout the city. She attended Central High School, and then earned a Bachelors of Science in Information Systems and Technology from Drexel University.
Amaris started her professional career as a Data Manager with the School District of Philadelphia. At the District, Amaris worked with a family literacy program where she oversaw the client management system for state funding and facilitated technology courses to parents in the community. After serving eight years with the District, Amaris began consulting for Bank of America as a Systems Administrator. At Bank of America, Amaris managed the production and job tracking system for an internal advertising agency.
For the last nine years, Amaris has been an active participant of the National Conference of Puerto Rican Women, a national organization that serves the community through workshops, mentoring, scholarships and leadership development. Through NACOPRW Amaris has been able to work with the local Latino
community and partner with great organizations throughout the city. One of her goals is to raise awareness for women in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) fields. Amaris is currently the President of the Philadelphia chapter.
In January 2013, Amaris joined Philadelphia Energy Solutions as a Senior Systems Analyst, responsible for Security and Contractor Management systems.
In August 2015, Amaris was sworn into the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Latino Affairs, where she currently sits as the Commission Vice-Chair. Through the commission, Amaris is able to bring the issues of the local Latino community and recommendations for policy to the attention of the Governor. Amaris continues to advocate for young women to enter STEAM fields. In 2010, she was nominated by Impacto Newspaper as one of the “40 Most Influential Leaders in the Delaware Valley”.
Nilsa R. Graciani, Ph.D. joined the team at Esperanza College in July 2011 as an Adjunct Professor. In October 2013 she assumed the position of Director for Middle Level Education, Math and Science, and currently serves as the Director of STEM and Medical Assisting.
A native of Puerto Rico, Dr. Graciani graduated from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras, with a Bachelors in Science with a concentration in Chemistry. She continued her studies in Organic Chemistry at Texas A&M University, where she earned her Ph. D. Prior to her work at Esperanza, Nilsa held research scientist positions in the pharmaceutical industry. Her research included work with peptides and small molecules in various therapeutic areas including cancer, cardiovascular, inflammation, infectious diseases and women’s health. She has been a speaker at scientific and health conferences.
Nilsa lives in Garnet Valley, PA with her husband and three children. She is actively involved at her church and her children’s schools. She is on the Advisory Board of the Latina Leadership Network at the Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Susan G. Komen Latina Advisory Board. She has also been an influential part in the development of the Hunting Park Science Network in Philadelphia. She’s been instrumental in running the first robotics club at Esperanza College and was honored in 2014 as Community Partner of the Year by the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers. Her role at Esperanza allows her to impact younger generations by sharing her passion and developing in them a love for teaching and becoming professionals in STEM-related fields.
Yashira is a passionate entrepreneur, designer, activist, blogger, event coordinator, philanthropist and marketing/social media guru. She is currently the Events and Non-Traditional Revenue Coordinator at WURD Radio, the only independently owned African American radio station in Pennsylvania. Yashira is the blogger of personal lifestyle blog M0ntage.com (soon to be YashiraRivera.com), a website that displays motivational stories, interviews, and volunteerism to help readers boost their confidence. She is also a co-facilitator for the Indivisible Northwest Philadelphia's Reproductive Justice Group.