Armour Dance Theatre Announces 2022-2023 Board Members and Names New Board Leadership
We are thrilled to announce the 2022-23 board of directors and officers this year! Our Board of Directors is comprised of a dedicated team of community leaders committed to providing guidance, stability, and hope for the organization and its work in the community. These individuals bring a wealth of experience and expertise in their fields and will be tremendous assets to Armour Dance Theatre as we further our mission of using the power of exceptional dance training to ensure every student reaches their full potential.
OLIVER VON GUNDLACH, PRESIDENT
Oliver was born and raised in Germany. In his 20’s he made the decision to relocate to the United States and has since been a resident of South Miami for the past 30 years. His career has consisted of four years of military service, twenty years as a consultant, manager, and educator in the fitness industry, and was a realtor with Coldwell Banker. He is currently working as an owner and broker of Windsor Real Estate Group and Yolo Design & Property Rehab Corporation while serving as the President-Elect for Armour Dance Theatre.
AMANDA NOBOA-MEJIA, PRESIDENT ELECT
Amanda was born and raised in the Dominican Republic. Since immigrating to the U.S. in 1985, Amanda has successfully fulfilled careers in corporate information technology, small business administration, and after-school & recreational sports programs.
Amanda has turned her professional journey into purpose by becoming a certified career transition and leadership coach. She is a former president of Toastmasters International – South Dade Club, board member of Business Network International – Legends Chapter, and a board member of the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce – Women’s Business Network. Amanda has been actively involved with Armour Dance Theatre since 2011 as a parent of an alumnae, volunteer, donor, ambassador, and board member.
Amanda’s reason for serving on the Armour Dance Theatre Board of Directors
“My life has been significantly impacted by the Armour Dance Theatre mission, initially through my son Marcel Mejia’s educational and professional path as a dancer followed by his continuing impact on the children in ADT’s community as a dance instructor. I am forever committed to continue his legacy.”
DENNIS EDWARDS, TREASURER
Dennis has been a member of the Armour Dance Theatre board since 2006. He has been active in Miami’s arts community as a volunteer, donor and board member for over 35 years. His most recent roles include treasurer of the Florida Cultural Alliance, chair of the New World School of the Arts Foundation Board and founding president of Maximum Dance Company. He and his husband established the Dennis Edwards and Mark Steinberg Foundation to support the arts, education and the LGBTQ community in South Florida.
Dennis’s reason for serving on the Armour Dance Theatre Board of Directors
“In many arts organizations, efforts in education or community outreach are of secondary importance. ADT’s focus on these components, and its dedication to supporting each student from childhood into adulthood, is in many ways unique and made me want to be involved.”
JACQUELINE CALDERIN, SECRETARY
Jacquline was born in Cuba and raised in Miami, FL, and is the Armour Dance Theatre board secretary, New World School of the Arts Foundation Chairperson, and President and CEO of the Cycling Friends, and a former board president of Patches board. Her professional affiliations include chair-elect for Florida Bar Business Law Section’s Marketing, Promotions and Sponsorship Committee and member of Finance Committee, member of the Business Law Section of The Florida Bar, the Cuban American Bar, Association, American Bankruptcy Institute, Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Advisors, Hispanic National Bar Association, and International Women’s Insolvency and Restructuring Confederation, and former South Florida Network co-chair, the International Women’s Insolvency and Restructuring Confederation. She holds a B.A. Magna cum laude from Florida International University and J.D. from the University of Miami School of Law.
Norman relocated from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in1973 and accepted a faculty position at the University of Miami School of Medicine. He was the first director of the Division of Comparative Pathology. His research has included diabetes, prostate cancer, and immune diseases. He has also held a number of administrative positions at the university including the Vice Provost for Research. At the medical school he has been Senior Associate Dean for Research, Director of the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and Ombudsman for the faculty and students. He has received Lifetime Achievement awards from the University Faculty Senate and the cancer center He has been inducted into the prestigious University Iron Arrow Honor Society. Norman and his wife Stephanie have been long time supporters of ADT. Stephanie was a board member and dedicated the ADT library. It is my pleasure to serve on the board of directors for all the cultural and educational activities that they bring to our community.
Carla is a creative soul with a passion for the arts. She is a former English teacher for Miami-Dade County Public School. For seven of her ten years as a teacher, she taught at New World School of the Arts, her alma mater. She works as a national TV host for PBS, a cultural correspondent for Legacy Magazine’s weekly online show entitled MIA Soul, and a model and commercial actress. Her community work includes a former member of the New World School of the Arts Foundation board, Nordstrom national scholarship panelist, and a current member of the Armour Dance Theatre Board. She received recognition in the “Women of Strength” ad campaign by Cover Girl Cosmetics that was featured in ESSENCE magazine. Carla was personally invited by President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden to participate on a women’s health panel in Washington, DC to speak about her experience as a cancer survivor. She’s also been recognized locally by the Miami-Dade County Black Affairs Council as one of the County’s women of distinction. Carla holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Secondary Education from Florida State University. After earning her Master of Science in Counseling from Barry University, she was able to serve the residents of South Miami-Dade and North Miami as a mental health therapist with Family Counseling Services of Greater Miami.
Bobbi is a retired high school English teacher, author of seventeen Holocaust survivor memoirs, and an educator on the March of the Living – an international program that brings high school students to Poland and Israel to study the Holocaust. Bobbi has a unique history with Armour Dance Theatre. She served as a board member of the Miami Ballet Company and the Thomas Armour Youth Ballet in the 1970s, ’80s, and ’90s. She initiated and produced the original Nutcracker field trip performances alongside Laura Wright. Bobbi studied ballet with Thomas Armour, Robert Pike, and Martha Mahr and took part in many of their company’s performances Her daughters danced with both the junior and senior companies.
Lisse is Vice President and Associate General Counsel, Commercial and Regulatory Affairs for TriNet Group, Inc. She is also a member of the Legal Advisory Council of the National Association of Professional Employer Organizations. Lisse has held prior board positions with Temple Beth Am and served as the Chair of the religious school board. She holds a B.A. from Boston University and a J.D. from the University of Miami School of Law. A life-long ballet lover, Lisse studied ballet through her teens. After more than 30 years, Lisse started taking ballet lessons at Armour Dance Theater, attending the adult/teen class where she saw first-hand how Armour Dance Theatre has impacted the lives of so many children in our community. In her ballet class she met a student who attended the community after school program and was heading to an elite college in the Northeast. This student credited her success in life to the support and encouragement she received growing up from “Miss Ruth” and ADT. After learning of these and countless other stories of how ADT impacts the youth of our community, Lisse joined the board and now chairs the nominating committee.
Claudia Lewis is the Senior VP and Director of Luxury Sales at Premier Elite Realty, an International Boutique Agency with offices in Miami, Coral Gables, and Miami Beach. She is an Executive Director of the Master Brokers Forum Advisory Board where she serves as the Membership Chair. As a member of The National Association of Realtors, The Florida Association of Realtors, The Realtor Association of Miami-Dade County, and The Women’s Council of Realtors, Claudia is an active participant in the formulation of new legislation which governs the real estate profession and protects the consumer’s best interests.
Claudia and both of her daughters studied ballet at The Miami Conservatory for many years and performed in numerous productions of Miami Ballet’s Nutcracker over the years. Her little granddaughter is studying there now with Mariana Alvarez and Ruth Weisen at Armour Dance Theatre. Claudia served on the Miami Ballet Board in the ’80s and ’90s, assisting Mr. Armour and Mr. Pike in a multitude of ways and co-chaired the Nutcracker field trips with Bobbi Kaufman and Laura Wright, enabling the company to perform in various venues on the west coast of Florida and then at Epcot. All three of Claudia’s children graduated from New World School of the Arts before heading to New York and Boston for college. Claudia served on the NWSA PTSA as the Vice President of Dance supporting Dean Daniel Lewis in all his projects at the school. Now she is proudly serving on the Board of Armour Dance Theatre with high aspirations for the role of this organization in the community, contributing to the performing arts culture while enhancing and improving the lives of so many children and their families.
Ally is an ADT alumna (2004) and has been a donor for several years. Ally is a popular instructor for Peloton, the CEO/Founder of Love Squad, the in-arena Host of the Brooklyn Nets, an Adidas Global Ambassador, and a model. She will also be the host of an upcoming Netflix choreography competition show. This past year, Ally helped ADT secure its first major corporate gift of $27,000 through a capsule collection with Evereve. Ally credits Ms. Ruth and ADT for playing a major role in her journey to success.
Lisa is a board member of Armour Dance Theatre and is also a volunteer judge film screener for the Miami International Film Festival, and a member of the advisory board for the Education Fund. Her professional experience includes: Volunteer Coordinator/Community Participation Specialist at Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Associate Director for Mental Health Association of Miami-Dade County, Productivity Analyst/Management and Training Consultant for Miami-Dade County, Department of Productivity Analysis, Director of Marketing and Community Relations for the City of Miami, Department of Off-Street Parking, Senior Marketing Manager for Citibank Florida, and Public Relations Consultant for Citibank Florida, Cigna Dental Health, Young & Rubicam, and Suited For Success. She holds a B.A. in Social Work from the University of Georgia and an M.Ed. from Georgia State University School of Psychology.
Lisa’s reason for serving the Armour Dance Theatre Board of Directors
“My first connection with Armour Dance was through marriage. My husband grew up with the husband of the founder of the scholarship program, Ruth Wiesen. My initial involvement was as a donor when Ruth would call to ask for support to cover the cost of sending the “kids” to NYC for summer dance programs. One Saturday, years later, I had to drop off tickets at the studio for Ruth and her husband to join us at a show that evening. When I opened the door to the studio, I saw Ruth teaching a ballet class to 10 pre-teens and teenagers, mostly African American and Hispanic boys dressed in leotards and tights. Not a common sight in the dance world and I was intrigued. That is when I learned the powerful story of how the Armour Dance scholarship program began with the commitment that was made to bring dance to underserved, low-income youth and to the communities in which they lived and to use dance as a vehicle for future success. I was hooked! I have watched the program grow and expand. I have learned that dance lessons and the life skills learned through the pursuit of dance are only one piece of the journey to success for those youth ADT serves. I have observed and am in awe of how the leadership of the program has not only provided outstanding dance instruction but has also adapted to address the many non-dance-related obstacles that lay in that path to success and to support the families of the students as well. And, throughout the many years, I have heard the stories and seen the successes!! The Annual Alumni update shows only the tip of the iceberg of the impact of the program and its successes. Since that day in the late 1980s, I have been a devoted admirer, ardent fan, and when called upon, an outspoken champion of Armour Dance Theatre.”
ADT is looking for a few leaders from the community to join its dynamic board of directors with legal, accounting, and financial experience, as well as those with experience in not for profit governance and endowment funds. If you are interested in learning more about his opportunity reach out to Camila Gil at email@example.com