TEAM

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D'SHAWNA BERNARD 
President

D'shawna Bernard has spent almost a decade shaping a career that is dedicated to progressive politics and partnerships. Her passion for public service has allowed her to work across a range of issues within the public and private sector, all of which have been rooted in equity, accessibility and justice. She has served in multiple capacities in organizations and on national political campaigns where she has used her expertise to facilitate national political strategy and build coalitions across the United States and internationally. Born, in Trinidad and Tobago she attributes her love for politics and people to her culturally diverse West Indian bringing. 

She has worked for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, the Democratic National Convention Committee, Hillary for America, Abrams for Governor and served as a Special Advisor on Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Political Team for her Senate re-election campaign in 2018. There, she led efforts to identify engagement, outreach and organizing opportunities with key elected officials, constituency leaders, community stakeholders and state parties on behalf of the Senator. She also served as the National Director of Black Outreach for Senator Warren’s 2020 US Presidential campaign. Currently, she is the Senior Director of Political and Strategic Partnerships at a tech company.

Committed to her love of country and building a global community for Trinbagonians everywhere, she founded the Student and Professional Organization of Trinidad and Tobago in 2013 and continues to lead the Executive Board to date.

Khadijah Bishop is a native of Trinidad and Tobago and graduate of Howard University where she double majored in Health Education and Political Science with concentrations in community Health and International Relations respectively. While at Howard, Khadijah served as Executive President of the Howard University Caribbean Students Association, one of the founding members of the Society of Future Diplomats and is one of the founders of the Student and Professional Organization of Trinidad and Tobago. 

 

Khadijah is a member of Pi Sigma Alpha National Political Science Honor Society, and is a former intern with the Congressional Black Foundation where she worked in the United States Congress in the office of US Rep. Denny Heck (WA10).Following her time on The Hill, Khadijah began working at the Embassy of The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Washington DC; where she still serves. 

Ms. Bishop also serves on the Advisory Council for the St Joseph’s Convent Port of Spain Alumni Association, USA Chapter and with the Trinidad and Tobago Diaspora Associations Network. 

 

In 2019 Khadijah was recognized by the Institute for Caribbean Studies as one of ‘30 Under 30 Caribbean American Emerging Leaders & Change Makers’ awardees. In January of 2022, Khadijah completed an Executive Diploma in Social Innovation from The University for Peace in Costa Rica

 

Khadijah is passionate about the sustainable development of the Caribbean region and strengthening diaspora engagement. Coupled with that are her interests in and love for working in the areas of youth leadership, mentorship, global health and entrepreneurship!

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KHADIJAH BISHOP

VICE PREsident

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JISELLE GRANDERSON EXECUTIVE sECRETARY

Jíselle O Granderson is a sustainability professional with specializations in strategic business and volunteerism management. In the last decade she has served as the Director of Global Impact at the Volunteer Centre of Trinidad and Tobago- VCTT and Chairwoman of the Caribbean Volunteer Exchange (CVX) network, comprising nine Caribbean organizations. Jiselle has designed and implemented high impact projects and interventions in both private and civil society sector, was successful in leading regional volunteerism integration efforts amongst four countries and led VCTT's at introducing the global day for doing good, 'Good Deeds Day' to Trinidad and Tobago and seven other Caribbean nations.

 

Jiselle holds degrees in Journalism, Public Relations and Media and Communications, with certifications in project management and sustainable business. In 2014, she was awarded the first time authors award from NALIS. In 2017, she co-facilitated at the United Nations Regional Consultation (Caribbean and Latin America) on Youth, Peace and Security in Panama and in 2018 presented on the progress of regional volunteerism at the Good Deeds Day World Leaders meeting in Germany. Her passion and work in development led her to the Student and Professional Organization of Trinidad and Tobago- SPOTT where she is a co-founder and executive secretary.

 

A lover of nature and travel, she is always reminded by the quote from Kung Fu Panda, "If you only do what you can do, you will never be more than you are" Master Shifu. Take the leap and just press don't be afraid to fall and if you do enjoy the wind on the way down, then get back up!

AKILA NOGUERA - DEVERS

PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER

Akila Noguera-Devers is a Sales Professional from Cascade, Trinidad and Tobago. She has spent the last 9 years at PepsiCo holding various roles and currently manages the Atlantic Region's Food Service Distributor Team. She currently helps manage her family's local business; Hololo Haven, in Cascade, Trinidad and Tobago, and is also a Freelance Makeup Artist. Although born in the Bronx, NY, she spent most of her childhood in Trinidad and Tobago, attending both Providence Girl’s Catholic School and Bishops Anstey High School.

 

Upon completion of the CAPE examinations, she left Trinidad and Tobago to pursue a degree in International Business at Howard University. At Howard she participated in various extra-curricular activities, including acting as the Vice President for the Caribbean Students Association. This role exposed her to the challenges that other Caribbean students were facing with respect to Career Guidance and Opportunities. This exposure led her to the SPOTT team and she continues to work with SPOTT to help students obtain professional guidance and opportunities. 

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SPOTT BOARD OF DIRECTORS

SPOTT’s Board of Directors comprises of Trinidad and Tobago nationals or persons of Trinidad and Tobago heritage who will serve for a minimum of 2 years unless otherwise ejected or re-elected under the organization’s governing bylaws.

To be a Board member, one must agree to support the mission to serve as a vehicle to connect Trinidad and Tobago students and professionals at home and abroad with like-minded organizations concerned in fostering personal, professional, and national development in Trinidad and Tobago. 

 

Individuals must commit to overseeing the fiscal, operational and developmental management of the organization by fulfilling the general responsibilities that come with membership and specific roles on the Board.

Current Board Members Include:

  • MS CORRINE BYER

  • MRS. ADRENA IFILL BLAGBURN 

  • MR. ADAM RAFFOUL

  • MR. REGGIE RAMLOCHAN 

  • MS. CHANTAL LA ROCHE

 

Current Advisory Council Members Include:

MS. KEISHA ALEXANDER

MS. AVALON GOMEZ

Past Board Members Include:

  • Ms. Jillian MoOre

  • Mr. Nigel Scott

  • Ms. Lystra Hinds

  • MS. NATHIFA GREENE

Persons Interested in serving on the board should please email spottconnect@gmail.com

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Shekinah absolam
 treasurer