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The American Gateways Team

Board of Directors

Affiliations listed for identification only

Valerie Barker



Norton Rose Fulbright

Jennifer Walker Gates

Vice President


JLW Immigration Law Group

Josh Caballero


Community Engagement Officer

City of Waco

John Donisi



Ben Bui

Global Head of Legal Escalations


Joseph Dubin

Product Manager

Home Depot

Arlene Lyons

Community Leader

Graciela Cigarroa

General Counsel


Meera de Mel


Ruffner Schoenbaum Murphy Banaszak PLLC

Maddy Dwertman


Baker Botts LLP

Rebecca Matsumura

Litigation Counsel, Ripple

Anne Drane


SAWA Collection

Montserrat Garibay

Senior Advisor for Labor Relations

Office of Secretary of U.S Department of Education

Melissa Ortega

AI/ML Analyst

Leadership Council

Our Leadership Council is made up of distinguished individuals from communities served by our local offices. They act as ambassadors to the community and work to expand our supporters and resources by leveraging professional networks and personal spheres of influence.

John Antonelli

Founder & Owner, CEO

Antonelli’s Cheese

Mélat Celeste Quesada

Creative Director, Producer, Real Estate

Geronimo Rodriguez

Chief Advocacy Officer

Ascension Texas

Becky Pastner

Philanthropic Advisor & Leadership Coach

Kendall Antonelli

Founder & Owner, President

Antonelli’s Cheese

Rose Reyes

San Antonio Office President

Giant Noise

Justin Rosolino

Project Coordinator

Magnolia Foundation

LaRaine DuPuy

Community Volunteer

Michael Buratti

Program/Project Manager

Cecile Richards



Alfred Solano

Vice President

Waco Family Medicine Foundation

Waco Advisory Committee 

Arlene Lyons- Is the former Executive Director of Refugee Rights, Inc. and Austin Rape Crisis Center. She has several decades of experience leading nonprofits, grant writing, and working in the immigrant community.


John Alexander- Has lived in Waco for over twenty years. He is the Executive Director of Waco Habitat for Humanity. He and his wife lived in Nicaragua for three years and are connected to the immigrant community in Waco.  


Josh Caballero- Is a Community Organizer with Grassroots Community Development. He has experience working with refugees from various parts of the world.  


DeShauna Hollie- Is a native Wacoan and former leader of the Waco Immigrants Alliance. She is a community organizer with Grassroots Community Development.    


Grecia Chavira- Grew up in Waco and is an immigrant from Mexico. As a former DREAMer, she has been involved in advocacy for undocumented students. She is a paralegal in the Law Office of Susan Nelson.  


Susan Nelson- Is a Baylor Lawyer and immigration practitioner for over ten years. She is a board certified immigration attorney. She is also the leader of the Baylor Law School Immigration Clinic.    

Joe Gatlin- Is founder of Waco Habitat for Humanity. He worked with Habitat for Humanity International for over 30 years and has extensive experience in the nonprofit arena.  

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