Nevada State Treasurer
Dan is Nevada's State Treasurer. He is committed to improving education through the Millennium Scholarship and other college savings plans; to creating jobs through a micro-loan and related investment programs; and to making Nevada's tax dollars work for its citizens.
Dan grew up in suburban Chicago and attended Princeton University. He graduated from the undergraduate program at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public Policy and International Affairs in 1972. During his junior year, he studied at the Institut d'Etudes Politiques in Paris and received his Certificate. He holds a law degree from Boston University and a business degree from Columbia.
He served in the United States Army (1972-74) and was stationed in Europe as a Pershing Missile Crewman.
Dan has over 35 years of financial experience across multiple sectors of the banking and securities industry in Houston, New York, and internationally. He is also an experienced and accredited investor in the public and private markets.
Over the past 25 years, Dan has started and built several companies. He served as the CEO of AVCJ Group, Ltd. (AVCJ), which publishes the highly-regarded Asian Venture Capital Journal, the first ever print journal to be distributed over the Internet. Dan and his team built AVCJ into Asia's leading source on conferences and information on Asian private equity and venture capital. A UK company purchased AVCJ in 2006.
Dan is also Founder, President and CEO of Qiosk.com, "The World's Newsstand," one of the pioneers and innovative leaders in digital magazine delivery and media. Fifteen years after its creation, Qiosk continues to be profitable and a leader in its field.
Dan is active in the Jewish Federation of Las Vegas and supports many community organizations in Nevada. He is the author of two books, The Future of Finance: How Private Equity and Venture Capital Will Shape the Global Economy (published by John Wiley) and Principles of the American Republic (published by Sturdy Oak Press).
Dan is married, proud of his two daughters, and resides with his wife, Yanan, in Las Vegas and Carson City.
CEO / Founder, Women's Money
Gina Robison-Billups is the Founder and Executive Director of the National Women's Money Council.
Women’s Money® is a unique, proprietary financial education, support and accomplishment system for women, girls and families. The program has provided hosted eight conferences in three years and offers an ongoing financial mentoring support system. The program which has delivered more than 30,000 hours of financial education nationwide.
Robison-Billups is the first Nevada woman appointed as a member to the National Women's Business Council (NWBC.gov), a nonpartisan federal advisory council created to serve as an independent source of advice and policy recommendations to the President, Congress, and the U.S. Small Business Administration on economic issues of importance to women business owners.
She has authored and co-authored several books including the new Women's Money Guide to Budgets, Spending and Saving Money.
Assistant Director, Women's Money
Tara Villalobos has been the Assistant Director with Women’s Money since March of 2013-shortly after its launch in 2012. Her involvement has been everything from conference planning, production of Women’s Money events and facilitation of the mentoring program to local, state and national outreach on behalf of the organization. She, herself has been a participant of the program and has gained first hand benefits as a result of the information that Women’s Money provides through its various events.
She currently facilitates one of the Women’s Money Mentoring and support groups in the greater Las Vegas area in partnership with the City of Las Vegas Parks and Recreation department to promote financial health to women and families. Her connections and relationships in the Las Vegas community help provide resources for women on a variety of financial needs.
Tara is currently working in partnership with Nellis AFB to help bring financial education and resources to Military families through Women’s Money/Military Money and Life events and classes.
Change Agent, Speaker, Thought Leader
Yomi Abiola is a Social Entrepreneur, journalist and thought leader. At the core of Yomi's work is diversity, inclusion and female empowerment. As an international speaker, Yomi has presented at Harvard, Yale, MIT, the United Nations and TED. Yomi's commitment to change was born from watching her father's political journey. MKO Abiola was the first man to win a free and fair election in Nigeria. As a Change Agent, Yomi focuses on the empowerment and advancement of women and girls. She is committed to preparing women to identify and cease opportunities for exponential growth. As the first African face for Maybelline cosmetics, Yomi has graced the pages of Vogue Italia, British Elle, Harpers Bazaar. Yomi is the founder of Stand Up For Fashion (STUFF), a global platform that promotes social accountability and responsibility in the fashion industry.
Founder of The Debt Myth
Debt freedom expert Jackie Beck is a personal finance author and creator of the app store hit Pay Off Debt, an app that’s helped 46,000+ people use a debt snowball to break free from debt. She started The Debt Myth website in 2011 because she’s passionate about helping others who want to change their financial life. After struggling with debt for years, Jackie learned that the key to getting control of her finances was to become aware of how she spent her money. She started paying down debt, built an emergency fund, and began contributing to retirement with a vengeance. Jackie and her husband Miles became completely debt free (including their house) in August of 2012, after paying off more than $147,000.00.
Mary Beth Storjohann CFP
Author of Workable Wealth, Certified Financial Planner and Founder of Workable Wealth.
Mary Beth Storjohann, CFP® is the founder of Workable Wealth and is a writer, speaker and financial coach working on a national level to help individuals and couples in their 20s, 30s and 40s make smart, educated decisions with their money. Known for her knack of breaking complicated money topics down to the basics, Mary Beth applies a no-nonsense approach while keeping things fun and engaging. Mary Beth has been a featured expert in financial publications across the country. She frequently appears on NBC and has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, U.S. News & World Report, Yahoo! Finance, MSN Money and more. Her first book, Work Your Wealth: 9 Steps to Making Smarter Choices With Your Money (March 2016) cuts through the fancy lingo, breaks down complicated topics and provides clear-cut guidance on the money moves you can make to improve your financial situation right now. Mary Beth has been recognized as one of the 10 of the Best Personal Finance Experts on Twitter from Benzinga, one of the 37 Personal Finance Experts to Follow on Twitter by U.S. News & World Report MoneyTo connect with Mary Beth, head over to www.workablewealth.com or find her on twitter @marybstorj.
Jerrie E. Merritt
Vice President, Bank of Nevada
Jerrie E. Merritt serves as senior vice president and community development manager for Bank of Nevada. Her banking career spans over 35 years. Jerrie’s responsibilities include development and coordination of all community development and acts as a liaison with state and local agencies, non- profit development groups, and other participants in community and economic development programs and projects. Working to strengthen existing client relationships and building strong community partnerships.
Jerrie has been recognized for her skillful leadership, stellar performance and undeniable contributions to the financial arena. A champion of education, she served on the State of Nevada Capital Investment Corporation, and has lobbied for the Glass Ceiling Act in Washington D. C. She has served as a distinctive District President of Financial Women International.
With a spirit of excellence she currently lends her experience and expertise to the Board of the Urban Chamber of Commerce as the Chair of the board of directors, Links Incorporated, Coalition of 100 Black Women, Valley Hospital Medical Center, Help of Southern Nevada, American Business Women Association, Workforce Connections and Trustee Board for The Champions Center Church.
No stranger to the community she loves, Ms. Merritt is the past President for the Rape Crisis Center, Hannah Brown Community Development Center and is passionately involved with numerous philanthropic and civic originations.
Merritt was awarded the Women of Distinction Award by the NAWBO and was featured as an Interesting Personality in the Inaugural Edition of Who’s Who In Black Las Vegas™. She has been married for 42 years and has one son.
Jessica came to the Women’s Money Program in November 2013 and successfully completed Program One in April 2015.
Jessica Castillo received her Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Studies from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and her Associate of Applied Science Degree in Commercial Photography from the College of Southern Nevada. She is currently working at Holland Construction, Inc. in Long Beach, CA as a Project Management Assistant. She is aiding two teams in building two high-rise, multi-use towers in Downtown Los Angeles, currently scheduled to break ground in early 2016. A strong advocate for helping improve systems, helping create efficiency, and maintaining a work/life balance, she involves her co-workers and friends alike in a multitude of activities to foster personal growth and enjoyment of life. Jessica came to the Women’s Money Program in November 2013 and successfully completed Program One in April 2015. She became a Mentor in May of the same year and has enjoyed helping other women get organized and continue on the path to financial freedom. Jessica’s continued passion for wellness; physical, mental, and financial, is contagious and she hopes to continue to help people feel better about themselves, and their financial wellbeing well into the future.
Sheila A. Salehian
Deputy Treasurer Nevada State Treasurer’s Office
Deputy Treasurer for Southern Nevada Sheila Salehian joined the Treasurer’s Office in January 2012. Sheila’s responsibilities include oversight of the first 529 CollegeSavings Program in Nevada, The Nevada Prepaid Tuition Program. She is also responsible for outreach and administration if the office’s many Financial Literacy programs.
Prior to joining the Treasurer’s office, Sheila worked in the Financial Services Industry for over22 years, holding a variety of Relationship Manager, Area Director, & Information Technology liaisonroles for a Fortune 100 company.
Sheila holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Iowa.
Director of Homebuyer Services
Diane Arvizo is a country girl at heart. Raised on a Southern California dairy farm, Diane not only embodies the work ethic and values of small town America, she is committed to supporting the rural lifestyle through her work with Nevada Rural Housing Authority.
Diane joined NRHA as Director of Homebuyer Services in early 2015 after serving as the Single Family Housing Specialist at USDA Rural Development. She brings to the job a diverse background in real estate, financing, loan servicing, and community development, as well as an A-to-Z understanding of the home buying process.
At NRHA, Diane has found a team whose vision and values are in direct alignment with hers – to make responsible homeownership an affordable option for families and individuals throughout the state. She is driven in her work by the reward of helping people whose lives are forever changed when they become successful homeowners.
Diane recognizes the need for innovative programs designed to meet changing market conditions and the community’s evolving needs. These are the exact challenges that NRHA’s Home at LastTM program were designed to meet. As Director of Homebuyer Services, Diane will enthusiastically continue the work of Home at LastTM, building strong strategic partnerships and providing homebuyers with essential education.
Diane is an active community volunteer, having served as president of Soroptimist International of Yerington and coordinator of many community outreach events. Professionally, Diane recently served as Secretary of the Rural Development Civil Rights/Equal Opportunity Employment Committee, Employee Development Project Lead for the Rural Development Cultural Transformation Committee and Co-Team Lead for Rural Development’s Community Economic Development team, among other posts. She has received numerous awards and honors for high performance and her commitment to service.
Diane has called northern Nevada home for most of her life, and it is here that she and her husband Dave continue to raise three of their four children. Her oldest son is a cadet at West Point. The family stays busy with multiple club sports and enjoys taking road trips around the country.
Vice President, Financial Ctr Mgr. III
I am financial center manager at a nationwide bank. My 19 years in banking has allowed to assist many clients accomplish their financial goals. I focus on educating our community on the importance of banking and how it all works. I find it extremely rewarding to see a customer through their first bank account, credit card, home purchase and retirement. I have managed locations in Las Vegas 9 years and 10 years in my home state of California. I am a mother of four children ages 20, 7, 5, and 4.
Yolanda Flores, MD, MS, MMM, FACP
Medical Director for OPTUM and Primary Care Physician P/T, Southwest Medical Associates Inc.
Oversees a home based program which provides care by providers (Physicians/Nurse Practitioners) to high risk Medicare Advantage Plan patients. Dr. Flores actively participate in this 3 organizations: American College of Physicians, American college of Physician Executives and National Hispanic Medical Association. Her experience based in Primary Care Physician -Southwest Medical Associates, Inc. from September 2001 – Present (14 years). In Las Vegas, Nevada Area Primary Care Physician / Veterans Health Administration / December 2000 – July 2001 (8 months) Reno, Nevada Area. Her Certifications are Internal Medicine Board and ACLS she is graduated from USC Marshall School of Business.
OMBUDSMAN OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS FOR MINORITIES
Miriam Lira-Hickerson is the Ombudsman of Consumer Affairs for Minorities at the Nevada Department of Business and Industry. She is responsible for implementation of the Department’s education and outreach activities within the State’s minority communities. As the Ombudsman, Ms. Lira-Hickerson provides consumer education, helps resolve consumer issues involving fraud or deceptive trade practices and assists with business outreach and development.
Ms. Lira-Hickerson is the founder and CEO of Nevada Consumer Advocates, a consulting company established to provide services to individuals seeking assistance with consumer fraud and deceptive trade practice complaints.She is also a certified mediator and has mediated numerous civil disputes in the areas of landlord/tenant, divorce, financial and business, among others.She currently hosts a weekly radio show “Proteccion Contra Abusos al Consumidor” to educate and inform the public about consumer affairs topics. Previously, she volunteered with the State of Nevada Consumer Affairs Division.
She was named the City of Las Vegas April 2013 Citizen of the Month in recognition of her work with the Las Vegas Metro Police Department’s Hispanic American Resource Team Program (HART) to create the Double Vision Youth Program, a gang prevention and education program. She was also recognized for providing assistance to victims of fraud and other crimes by serving as their court advocate and a number of other efforts to help the Latino community access services in the city of Las Vegas.
Lira-Hickerson holds a bachelor’s degree in Marketing and a master’s degree in International Commerce from Instituto Politecnico Nacional in Mexico City. She is a member of the National Latino Peace Officers Association and the Southern Nevada Child Drowning Prevention Coalition.
Maria Miranda is a financial services representative for Capital Choice Financial Services. She has worked in the financial services industry for 30 years. Her experience and knowledge gained throughout the years allows her to provide guidance to individuals and businesses to aid in their financial goals. She assists clients with income protection with proper insurance coverage, reducing debt, and accumulating wealth to achieve financial freedom. Capital Choice Financial Services, a financial services firm committed to helping people pursue their financial goals and an Endorsed Local Provider for Dave Ramsey’s program Financial Peace University.
Executive Director for Community Services of Southern Nevada
Community Services of Nevada (CSNV) offer confidential one-on-one counseling sessions to work with you to find the solutions that best fits your situation. The counselor will assist you with:
-Interacting with your lender
-Evaluating your financial situation
-Establishing a monthly budget plan-
Establishing a personal financial plan
-Determining available options-Assistance in finding a solution with servicer
Fernando E. Campos-Montesinos
Branch Manager for one of the top 10 mortgage lenders in the country. Who's main focus is to increase home ownership and to help to the under serve markets. As a Latino and growing up with a single mother and her struggles, I saw the necessities of our community to establish a solid foundation and to improve the quality of life thru home ownership. Also as a former NAHREP (National Association of Real State Professional) a non profit, I had the opportunity to be part of projects which the main goal is to push for and immigration reform during 2015.
Melanie Evans joined the Nevada Rural Housing Authority (NRHA) in the role of Home at Last Management Assistant working out of the Southern Nevada office.
Evans has nearly 20 years administrative experience, having previously worked for the Nevada Hospital Association, Sunrise Colony Company, the Medical University of South Carolina and HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital. She is a 1992 graduate of Trident College in Charleston, South Carolina, and she earned Professional in Human Resources Certification in 2008.
Enrolled in Women's Money Mentoring Program.
Enrolled in women's Money Mentoirng Program and attended first Mini-Con program in Las Vegas, and first WM Wealth Building Bootcamp. Is a member of the first Women's Money Wealth Building Circle in the nation.
As a real state agent and an immigrant, I saw the opportunity we have in this country to establish a solid foundation for our future generations. Home ownership is a necessity; and at a young age I encouraged my parent to become home owners it was very challenging as there resources were very limited 20 years ago, however the efforts were worth it as is a way to create wealth and stability. I'm very passionate on what I do, as I feel rewarded by helping others with my experience.
VP, Senior Business Leader
Global Community Relations
Public Policy – Law and Franchise Integrity
Mercedes Garcia is Vice President, Senior Business Leader Global Community Relations, responsible for developing relations with consumers, merchants, labor organizations, consumer advocacy groups and governments through MasterCard’s public education campaign, the “Master Your Card (MYC) Program,” which is designed to help these constituents leverage the electronic payment network.
Ms. Garcia is actively involved with key women’s organizations, on behalf of the MYC Program, serving in the roles as keynote speaker and panelist to delivering workshops. Annually, Ms. Garcia participates in national women’s conferences with organizations like the League of United Latin American Citizens’ (LULAC), the National Association of Women Business Owners’ (NAWBO), the Association of Women Business Centers (AWBC), the Urban League of Southern Connecticut’s Women’s Empowerment Summit, Idaho Treasurer Crane’s Smart Women-Smart Money Literacy Day, Texas Governor’s Conference for Women, and Virginia Senator Mark Warner’s Annual Women’s Conference.
Ms. Garcia has also been recognized by various organizations. Most recently by the South Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce receiving the “2015 Women Empowering and Embracing Women” Award; and, by the New York Hispanic Chamber of Commerce “2016 Annual Hispanic Women in Business” Award, which honors the commitment of exceptional Hispanic Women.
For several years, she has also acted as MasterCard’s spokesperson for consumer education programs targeting Hispanics and other underserved segments, and helped not only in the development of the educational programs, marketing and training materials, but also by personally conducting training sessions reaching thousands of people throughout the U.S.
Ms. Garcia joined MasterCard in 1994 to open the Venezuela office. She moved to the company’s headquarters in Purchase, N.Y., in 1998 to join the Global Product Group, supporting the development and global rollout of various MasterCard payment card programs in various regions.
Prior to joining MasterCard, Ms. Garcia developed an extensive marketing and advertising background for 10+ years at J. Walter Thompson, one of the leading multinational advertising agencies. Ms. Garcia is native of Venezuela, speaks several languages and has a Business Administration and Hotel Management degree from the Mexican Institute of Tourism and Hotel Management in Mexico City.
Administrative Assistant II - Nevada Prepaid Tuition Program, Office of the State Treasurer
Xochitl (pronounced “Soochee”) is a lead administrative professional in the Office of the State Treasurer of Nevada. Xochitl has been with the office for 2 years, and is a key member of the team.
Xochitl is the primary contact for all customers, is fluent in English and Spanish, and has helped many families in Nevada understand the benefits of saving for their children’s higher education needs. Prior to the State Treasurer’s office
Xochitl supported private sector companies in California where she honed valuable computer software skills and expertise, utilized her accounting knowledge in billing, and gained exceptional customer service skills. Xochitl graduated from the University of Guadalajara with an accounting degree before moving to the United States.
Joel Panduro es el Líder del equipo de especialistas del programa Home at Last. Él se concentra en educar a los consumidores, prestamistas, y agentes de bienes raíces sobre los programas de Home at Last. Él ha estado en industria financiera durante los últimos ocho años y es un graduado de UNLV (Universidad de Las Vegas Nevada). Se ha desempeñado en varias posiciones en la industria de servicios financieros y ha sido reconocido por sus empleadores en su desempeño y dedicación hacia servicio al cliente. Su enfoque de asistir a los residentes de Nevada a lcanzar el sueño americano de tener su casa, lo llevo a la Nevada Rural Housing Authority. Joel es un recién casado y disfruta viajar con su esposa. Él es un fanático del béisbol y disfruta asesorar a los jóvenes en la comunidad.
Joel Panduro is the Home at Last Specialist Team Lead. He focuses on educating consumers, lenders, and realtors about Home at Last Homebuyer programs. He has been in the finance industry for the past eight years and is an alumnus from the University of Nevada Las Vegas. He has held various roles in the financial services industry and has been recognized by his employers on his performance and dedication towards customer service. Joel’s strong focus on assisting Nevadans achieve the American dream of owning their home brought him to Nevada Rural Housing Authority. Joel is a newlywed and enjoys traveling with his wife. He is a baseball fanatic and enjoys mentoring the youth in the community.
Sarah Elizabeth ha hecho una carrera con New York Life para ayudar y educar a la comunidad hispana del norte de Nevada en respect0 a las finanzas, la protección de activos y planificacion de la jubilacion. Ella se esfuerza en aliviar a sus clientes de preocupaciones económicas y les ayuda a alcanzar sus metas a través de una planificación sistemática. New York Life le ha galardonado con el Premio de Exito de la Carrera y el Premio de Productor de Vida por su destacada actuación. Ha trabajado en la industria de servicios de financiera y seguros por más de seis años.
Criada por una madre soltera y nacida de una familia Méxicana-Americana, Sarah vio las dos culturas y mira sus raíces como parte importante de lo que ella es hoy. Ella entiende que su comunidad Hispana necesita apoyo y conocimiento cuando se trata de planificar para el futuro, pero más importante, ella conoce los obstáculos comunes que enfrentan las mujeres con el dinero. Ella trabaja especificamente con familias y duenos de negocio en Reno NV. Hoy hablará sobre los fundamentos de las finanzas y cómo construir un futuro financiero estable.
Integrity, hard work, dedication and passion are some of the words used to describe Charlie Santiago.
Being raised in a family of immigrants Charlie learned the value of hard work early in life as he watched his father working over 80 hours a week as a yellow cab driver in New York City where he was born.
During his early teenage years the family moved back to the Dominican Republic to run multiple family businesses where he worked by his father’s side.
At age 17 Charlie decided he wanted to live back in the states, and at the young age of 21 he helped start and run a successful business in the entertainment industry, he ended up selling his stakes in the company after 3 years. Shortly after in May of 2006 Charlie began his New York Life Career for the Nashville New York Life General office; as an agent he won multiple awards including Nashville GO’s Rookie of the Year. He quickly became a financial service professional and transitioned to the Partner role in June of 2008.
As a partner Charlie was Partner of The Year, Gathering of Eagles winner 3 years, and a Leading Partner 2 years. In April of 2015 Charlie was promoted to be the Managing Partner of the Reno General office.
Charlie has a passion for business and building business people, he considers one of his biggest accomplishments hiring his father into the New York Life.
personal financial education for women, girls, business owners, latinas, military, families and seniors
66% (that's 2/3rds) of Household breadwinners and co-breadwinners are women. - The Shriver Report
1 in 3 women lives in or on the brink of poverty. - The Shriver Report
3 out of 5 women over the age of 65 (married or single) cannot pay for her basic monthly needs.
The median earnings for all women are $638 a week, compared to $798 for men–approximately 80% of what men earn on average - The Bureau of Labor Statistics
If Women were paid the same as men for the same job, poverty in America would be reduced by 50% - Women21.gov
Women account for 85% of all consumer purchases on everything from autos to health care including 89% of Bank Accounts. - Marketing to Women Conference
84% of Women feel misunderstood by investment marketers - Marketing to Women Conference
Fewer than two in 10 women feel “very prepared” to make wise financial decisions. Half indicate that they “need some help,” and one-third feels that they “need a lot of help.” - Financial Experience & Behaviors Among Women 2010−2011
Women own 40% of all stocks. - A.T. Kearney
The average woman spends 15% of her working years outside of the workforce caring for children and elderly parents compared to the average man’s 1.6%. - Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement and National Center for Women’s Retirement Research
Nearly two-thirds of U.S. women ages 40 to 79 have already dealt with a major financial “life crisis,” such as job loss, divorce, the death of a spouse, or serious illness. - AARP, “Understanding Women’s Financial Needs and Behavior,” 2007 survey.
80-90% of women will be solely responsible for their finances at some point in their lives- mainly due to divorce and the fact that on average women outlive men by seven years - National Center for Women and Retirement Research
Even though women have a longer life expectancies, when asked how much they were aiming for in retirement savings, women aimed lower, with a median goal of $200,000 versus $400,000 for men. - Retirement Fitness Survey 2010
As Seen In
*Statistics are drawn from the Census Bureau, WOMMA, BSM Media, The Shriver Report, Sheconomy, Wow Online, and the Gamma Report.
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