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Rubén Cantú

As director of the office of Inclusive Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at UT Austin, Mr. Cantú focuses on addressing the income inequality gap for overlooked communities by helping them learn the tools of wealth creation, innovative thinking,community stewardship, and social impact. The department works with both UT students and non traditional students along with community leaders, government, private enterprise, and NPO’s to help create strong networks upon which new for profit sustainable ventures can be launched and uplift communities. Mr. Cantú is also the director of LevelUp Institute, an organization which empowers the next generation of diverse entrepreneurs. LevelUp Institute focuses on training students who are first in their family to attend college and come from low-income backgrounds to become social impact tech entrepreneurs. A 24-week co-ed program, students learn how to work within a team and incorporate an actual company that is addressing a social issue in their community.
Jonathan Barona

As the Special Projects Manager, Jonathan leads the Austin Community Foundations Special Projects, Fiscal Sponsorship, and scholarship funds. He strives to provide exceptional service to fundholders while providing a significant impact to the central Texas community. Prior to joining the Austin Community Foundation Jonathan worked as the Manager of Scholar Services for the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, the nation’s largest provider of scholarship dollars for Latino students. Jonathan managed several scholarship programs and helped expand HSFs support services to all scholars. Jonathan currently serves on the board of the Festival Beach Food Forest, the Austin Youth River Watch and is a member of the City of Austin Zero Waste Advisory Commission (ZWAC).
Dr. Colette Pierce Burnette

Ranking as the first female President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the historic Huston-Tillotson University, Austin’s oldest institution of higher learning and only historically black college and university (HBCU).

Before becoming a university president, Dr. Burnette was a successful engineer with widely-known organizations. From being a computer analyst for The Washington Post to an operations support engineer for Proctor and Gamble, from Director of Information Systems at Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation to Manager of Consulting and Project Management Services at the Washington State Department of Transportation, and ultimately, running her own computer consulting firm, it is no surprise that her alma mater, The Ohio State University named her Outstanding Engineering Alumnus.

Dr. Burnette has been named an Austin Fab Five by the Seedling Foundation and a Top 25 Woman in the nation in Higher Education by a leading higher education magazine, DIVERSE. Other awards received include: United States Army Distinguished Civilian Volunteer Service Medal Award, Thurgood Marshall Foundation Chief Information Officer of the Year Award, Outstanding Student Advocate Award, Inductee into the Austin Women’s Hall of Fame, Dayton Business Journal Chief Fiscal Officer of the Year Award, and the National Diversity Council Glass Ceiling Award, to name only a few.

Dr. Burnette’s local board memberships include the Mayor of Austin’s Taskforce on Institutional Racism and Systemic Inequities, Girl Scouts of Central Texas, Greater Austin Black and Austin Area Chamber of Commerces, and most recently, Earth Day Austin. Nationally, she serves on The Ohio State University’s College of Engineering Advisory Committee and the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church Board. Dr. Burnette is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Austin (TX) Chapter of The Links, Inc., the National Society of Black Engineers, and Texnikoi Engineering Honorary.
Dr. Karen Magid

As the Director of Sustainability at HT, Dr. Magid runs the Center for Sustainability and Environmental Justice at HT and co-founded the Building Green Justice Forum. As STEM Director, Dr. Magid directs the Austin Pre-Freshman Engineering Program (AusPREP), a 7-week summer program for underrepresented, high-achieving 6th-9th grade students interested in science and engineering. Dr. Magid is also Co-Director for the Dumpster Project, a sustainability and environmental education initiative housed at Huston-Tillotson University (HT) to turn a dumpster into a happy, healthy home and platform for engaging conversation. Dr. Magid came to HT having served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Mexico, and after completing post-doctoral research at ETH-Zurich.
Jim Walker

In his role as Director of Sustainability at the University of Texas at Austin, Mr. Walker collaborates on sustainability initiatives across campus and with surrounding neighborhoods and the City of Austin. This includes facilitation of the President's Sustainability Steering Committee, campus planning initiatives, supporting resource conservation efforts and various Green Fund projects. He received his Master’s in Community and Regional Planning from UT Austin last century, has worked on sustainability issues in Austin for over 20 years and will always share a cup of coffee to brainstorm the next cool idea. He is the former Executive Director of the Central Texas Sustainability Indicators Project.
Dr. Kazqiue J. Prince

Dr. Kazique J. Prince (pronounced ka-ZEE-kay) is founder and CEO of Jalani Consulting. is based in Austin, Texas, providing executive consultation and coaching services focused on cultural competency for individuals, teams, and organizations. Dr. Prince also serves as the senior policy advisor and education coordinator for Austin’s Mayor Steve Adler, focusing on education, equitable economic development, and public safety. His role involves using executive strategies to dismantle institutional racism and systemic inequities, promote equity and inclusion, and meet strategic goals within the Mayor’s agenda.
Kazique received his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology at The University of Georgia at Athens, Ed.S. in Counseling Psychology at Georgia State University. He is also a Board Certified Diplomat in African Centered/Black Psychology through The Association of Black Psychologists and certified administrator of the Intercultural Development Inventory through IDI, LLC. and has received many awards for his work in Austin and beyond, including:: The NAACP Austin Chapter’s 2019 Outstanding Community Service Award, the 2018 YWCA of Greater Austin Ally Award, the 2015 Texas DiversityFIRST Award and was recognized for the #IAmBlackAustin campaign by the Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce.
Recently, Dr. Prince launched Courage Equity, a nonprofit organization to provide funding for educators on diversity & inclusion and promote cultural relevant practice. He’s also writes and produces Equity Turned Up, a blog and podcast reflecting on a variety of equity and inclusion topics.
Dr. Amanda Masino

Dr. Masino’s research background includes work in cell biology, genetics, and developmental biology. As an undergraduate at Texas A&M University, she studied chromosome rearrangements and their contribution to speciation. She completed her doctoral research detailing the genetics of early heart development at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, then investigated cardiac stem cell biology at the University of Washington before joining the HT faculty in 2011. Her current research investigates the genetic diversity of microbial populations.

Dr. Masino leads a National Science Foundation-funded program that infuses student research training into HT’s Natural Science curriculum. She directs the STEM Research Scholars program, which provides science, technology, engineering and math majors with mentored undergraduate research experiences. She also serves as faculty advisor for JAMP (the Joint Admissions Medical Program) and the HT chapter of MAPS (Minority Pre-Medical/Pre-Health Association).

Dr. Masino is a proud member of HT’s Environmental Studies faculty. She advances environmental education by blending environmental science and community action. She is Co-Director of the Dumpster Project, an education initiative that is transforming a used trash dumpster into a sustainable home as a K-16 environmental education platform and public engagement tool. She co-advises HT’s environmental student group Green is the New Black with Karen Magid and Dominique Bowman, and co-founded the Building Green Justice Forum, a conference series that highlights local environmental justice issues.
Janis Bookout

Formerly the Outreach Manager for the previous organization, Janis has stepped into the role of Executive Director. She brings a background in environmental organizing, climate leadership, small business development, elementary education, and over 20 years of experience in event planning and team management. Janis has a BA in English and Anthropology from Trinity University and was a Texas certified elementary teacher. She is also Vice Chair of the Board of Texas Electric Transportation Resources Alliance.