Authentic Leadership – Putting it into Practice Panel
Creative Director and Founder, See Jane Work
Holly Bohn, founder of lifestyle brand See Jane Work, is an experienced consumer products entrepreneur. In 2004 Holly noticed a need for office supplies designed by women, for women, so she launched See Jane Work and it was an immediate success. To date See Jane Work and Holly have been featured in over 300 publications and media outlets including: Oprah’s O List, Wall Street Journal, Real Simple, New York Times and many more.
Her success was not without sacrifice and in 2010, after a major set-back, she decided to partner with Office Depot to expand her reach without sacrificing her personal goals. See Jane Work now has over 144 products in a dedicated 16 foot section at every Office Depot store and online. Although the brand started out with stylish organizational products for the office, See Jane Work has evolved into a lifestyle brand that enhances the lives of busy women with “stylish shortcuts” for every aspect of their lives. Holly has helped millions of women create more productive, fulfilling lives and spaces, with products that combine personal style with intuitive function.
Holly is an open book and happy to share her wins AND failures with intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs. Her story will encourage you to take chances, bounce back from failure and have fun along the way.
Dr. John Avendano
President and CEO, FSCJ
Dr. John Avendano is the sixth president and CEO of Florida State College at Jacksonville, one of the state’s largest institutions of higher education with nearly 50,000 students annually. With more than 30 years of community college experience, Dr. Avendano was previously the president and CEO of Kankakee Community College in Illinois. He also served as the president of the Illinois Council of Public Community College Presidents and the past chair of the South Metropolitan Higher Education Consortium President’s Council in Illinois.
Dr. Avendano was a first-generation college student for whom English is his second language. He received his associate degree from Waubonsee Community College, bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology from Northern Illinois University, master’s degree in adult continuing education from Northern Illinois University, and his doctorate in educational administration and foundations from Illinois State University. Dr. Avendano recently finished serving in his sixth year as the presidents’ liaison for the Illinois region of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK).
He was recognized by PTK with the following awards: Distinguished Administrator, Shirley B. Gordon Award and the 2019 Michael Bennett Lifetime Achievement Award. In addition, Dr. Avendano was inducted into Illinois State University’s Educational Administration and Foundations Hall of Fame. He also received the 2017-18 Illinois Community College Trustees’ Association Advocacy Award. Additionally, The Daily Journal recognized Dr. Avendano as its 2019 Citizen of the Year. He and his wife Janet have three children – Michael, Nicole and Marissa.
Business Solutions Strategist, FSCJ
Betzy Santiago considers herself a bridge builder, a liaison, and a conduit for growth and connectivity. She is a strategist, a volunteer and a promoter of others. She has positioned herself to help drive change and loves being a part of significant projects. Betzy has many mentors and seeks their wisdom. She is a speaker, a facilitator and a moderator. She loves people and is committed to make her life add value.
Betzy served as the City of Jacksonville’s International Officer, the Director of International Programs at Lutheran Social Services and now as a Business Strategist at Florida State College at Jacksonville. She has managed budgets of up to 2.1M, deployed and grown a new division to sales totaling over $1M in the first year and led the development and execution of resources for corporate growth.
Betzy has served as a liaison and board member on multiple local professional groups and nonprofits. She has spoken at various events, been featured in magazines, radio and television and is currently serving on the COJ’s City Charter Review Commission.
This year she is on a quest to visit as many Florida trails and to complete the Run the Year 2020 Challenge.
Anchor/Reporter, WJXT-TV Channel 4 News
Melanie Lawson-Minor is an Emmy nominated journalist at WJXT in Jacksonville, FL. She is one of the
earliest risers on the number one rated morning show in Jacksonville, kicking of a 4 hour long newscast
with the 5am show. This award-winning journalist anchors each morning and also reports daily on health
issues and medical breakthroughs. Melanie was recently nominated for an Emmy for her “Take it to
Heart” initiative which educates the community about the number one killer of all Americans, heart
Melanie grew up in Longwood, FL just two hours south of Jacksonville. She found love during a news
story and married fellow WJXT evening anchor Tarik Minor 10 years ago. The couple has a 7-year-old
son, Noah Graceson and a 5 year-old daughter Layah Grace.
Melanie attended Hampton University in Virginia, where she graduated with honors, with a degree in
broadcast journalism. She spends much of her time serving her community and feels a great
responsibility to give back through public speaking, mentoring and being a vocal leader in the
Melanie is currently a board member for Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition, Inc. The organization
is a cooperative community effort to reduce infant deaths and improve the health of children,
childbearing women and their families in Northeast Florida. She’s also a board member for Children’s
Home Society of Florida, which helps loving families become parents through adoption and foster care
programs. Melanie is also a proud member of First Baptist Church of Oakland in Jacksonville.