Meet Our Board

2016-2017 Board of Trustees of Serra International

 

 

Dante Vannini

Dante Vannini, President, dvannini@serrainternational.org,  Dante Vannini was born in Siena, Italy.  He and his wife, Niccoletta, have two daughters and three grandchildren.  He holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Techical Institute of Siena and a Masters in Logistics from Eindhoven University, the Netherlands,  He has worked as factory manager for Philips in New Delhi, India, a factory manager for Whirlpool in Alexandria, Egypt, Director of Logistics for Whirlpool Europe, and President of Electichal Company.  He joined Serra in 1994.  During his 20 years in Serra, he has been President of the Serra Club of Siena, Trustee of the Serra Council for Italy, and Trustee of the Junipero Serra Italy Foundation.

 

Daniel Jones

Daniel Jones, President-elect, djones@serrainternational.org, grew up on a dairy farm in Snohomish, Washington and graduated from Snohomish High School.  He graduated from Washington State University (after living in Phi Kappa Theta Catholic Fraternity) and then graduated from Stanford for Physical Therapy School. Dan practiced Physical Therapy for 38 years and was a founding partner of Therapeutic Associates; of which two of his sons are now partners.

 

He and his first wife raised four children (3 boys and a girl) and were active members of St. Pius X Parish and very involved in the kids Catholic High Schools (Jesuit and St Mary’s Academy).  He currently have 6 grandkids.

 

In 1980, when he was co-chair for the building a new church for St Pius he was invited to join Serra and has been a member ever since.  After his first wife’s death, he married Lynn, and she is an active partner with Dan in Serra.

 

Dan have served in numerous VP offices of the Portland Serra Club as well as two separate terms as President, District Governor and Regional Director.  On the United States Council of Serra International,  he has served as Chairman and VP of Vocations, member of the Executive Committee, and just completed his term as President of the Council of the United States of Serra International.

 

Ruben Gallegos

 

Dr. Ruben Gallegos, VP for Membership, rgallegos@serrainternational.org:  At an early age Dr. Ruben Gallegos worked in the agricultural fields of Texas, California, and Colorado.   For many years he served as altar boy in the Catholic Church.  He joined Serra in 1993 and served as Club President, District Governor, Regional Director, Board Member of Serra's National Council for the United States andSerra International.  In 1970 he graduated with Ph.D. from East Texas State University. He worked as teacher, assistant principal, principal, and assistant superintendent in Brownsville. Also he worked as assistant superintendent in Dallas and Superintendent in Edinburg. He worked 33 years in the field of education with the last nine years as university professor. In 2001, Brownsville named a school the Dr. Ruben Gallegos Elementary School for his contributions in the field of education for children in migrant, bilingual, and multicultural educational programs. Since 1988 Dr. Gallegos has served as the CEO of an educational agency.

 

 

 

 

Bertha Acuna Hallatt

 

Bertha Rosa Acuña Hallatt, VP for Vocations, bacuna@serrainternational.org, for the Serra International Board from Mexico. Has a Bachelor's Degree in History and in Psychology at the Texas Southmost College. She was a grant holder of the National Council of Science and Technology for a research on the “Theology of Liberation and Charismatic movements in Cuernavaca”. Has been coordinator for the organization, classification and rescue of the colonial archives of the Cathedral and presently she is working in the project of rescue of the Historic Library of the Cathedral of Cuernavaca, frolm the XVII and XVIII century.

 

She has been an active member of her local club for 25 years as Secretary, Vice President of Communication and Club President, where she has been very successful in the relations of the club with the Bishop and the seminary. She has lived abroad in different countries of the world which has given her a wide appreciation and understanding of the diversity of our club members and the compromise we have with the Lord to set an example as members of the catholic church.

 

Roberto Sobral, VP for Programs, rsobral@serrainternational.org.  Roberto Sobral Pinto Ribeiro -  Graduated in Economics from Brasilia University (UnB) in 1976 and earned a MSc. in Economics from University of São Paulo (USP) in 1978.  He worked for Brazilian Securities and Exchange Commission  from October 1978 to Ictober 2013 as Market Analyst, doing works of economic research, market surveillance and enforcement and is now retired.  He was an adjunct professor of Candido Mendes University (UCAM), Rio de Janeiro, teaching Financial Systems and Microeconomics from 1979 to 1983. Roberto joined Serra of Rio de Janeiro (first club in Brazil) in 1983.  He is a Past Club President, Past District Governor, and Brazilian Serra National Council member.  

 

Kurt Metyko VP for Communications, kmetyko@serrainternational.org, After St. Anne's Grade School and St. Thomas High School in Houston, Texas, Kurt obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Notre Dame University, Class of 1964.  Following graduation, he served on active duty in the Army for two years, including one year in Viet Nam, retiring as a Captain.  After his service, Kurt joined his father's civil engineering firm and is still practicing today.   Kurt became a member of the Houston Serra Club in 1968, joining his father Frank (1977 Serra International President).  Kurt held all the Club, District and U.S. Council positions culminating with the 2011 Presidency of Serra's National Council for the United States.  He has been a member and past Chairman of the Diocese of Galveston-Houston's St. Mary's Seminary Advisory Board, serving from 1978 until March, 2014.  Kurt also serves, since 1997, on the Board of the Shalom Center in Splendora, Texas, a counseling center for Catholic priests and religious.

 

Mario Biscardi

 

Mario Biscardi, Treasurer,  mbiscardi@serrainternational.org and Serran, Toronto Central Serra Club, District 26.  Mario has been a Serran since 1981, and during this time has been instrumental in the formation of 6 new Serra Clubs in the Archdiocese of Toronto plus 2 other dioceses in the surrounding area. Mario recently retired after a 40 year rewarding career with a major Canadian bank, having spent 18 years in lending to the real estate and construction industry as well as 14 years in the commercial and corporate banking area in Ontario. He is now very active as a consultant and also volunteers his time in various Church related charitable and non-profit organizations. Mario has been married to Luisa for 45 years, and has 3 children and 5 grandchildren.

 

 

 

 

 

Michael Bragg

 

Michael Bragg, Secretary, mbragg@serrainternational.org. Michael graduated from the College of Wooster , with honors and obtained his Juris Doctorate from Case Western Reserve University, cum laude.  Michael is a partner in the law firm Spengler Nathanson PLL in Toledo OH.  Michael is a 4th Degree Knight of Columbus, current Grand Knight of St. Joan of Arc Council 15905, the current Serra International District Governor for the Diocese of Toledo, President of the St. Joan of Arc Athletic Board, sits on the Executive Committee of the Maumee Valley Historical Society and sits on the board of Friends of Russian Orphans. Michael has volunteered as a coach and scout leader and sung in the Parish Choir. Michael is a past President of the Toledo Bar Association Real Estate Committee and currently sits on the Bar Admissions Committee. He is active at St. Joan of Arc Parish, has been married for 30 years and has four children. 

 

 

 

 

Timothy O'Neill

 

Timothy (Tim) O’Neill, Past President, toneill@serrainternational.org  is a member of the Serra Club of Omaha.  Tim has been actively involved in Serra for 25 years.  During this time, he has held several offices within his club, serving as President in 1991.  Tim served as District Governor for District 9W, and served on the SI Board Nominating Committee 2010 and 2011, has been a member of the SI Board of Trustees since 2012 and served as the SI Board Vice President of Communications 2013 prior to his election to President-Elect.  Tim currently serves on the Long- Range Planning Committee, and the Consolidated Administrative Office (CAO) taskforce. 

 

Tim and his wife Sally chaired the 2009 SI Convention held in Omaha, NE as well as the 2014 SI Convention held in Sacramento, CA.  Tim and Sally are very active in the Archdiocese of Omaha and serve on several committees.  Tim is a member of the Archbishop’s Committee for Development.  They are also active in the Institute for Priestly Formation (IPF) where Tim serves as chair of the IPF Mission Advancement Council.  Tim and Sally are active members of the Christ the King Church.

 

Tim and Sally have two sons, Connor and Collin.  Tim is self-employed and serves as President of J.F. Bloom and Company. Omaha, NE.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jeannette D'Souza, Trustee, jdsouza@serrainternational.org, Serra Club of Bangalore, India

 

 

 

 

Blessida Diwa, Trustee, bdiwa@serrainternational.org

 

 

 

Felix Dokpesi, Trustee, fdokpesi@serrainternational.org, is a Justice of the Peace, charter president and member of the Serra Club of Ibadan in District 130A, Nigeria. Felix was also the first district governor of District 130. He is VP of Programs and principal fundraiser in his club and a facilitator of several Serra training programes and activities at club and district levels in Nigeria.

 

Felix is Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Catholic Professionals of the Archdiocese of Ibadan. He is the Vice Chairman of the Awareness and Fundraising Committee at St. Albert the Great Major Seminary. He is a retired managing director/CEO of two major food manufacturing firms. His hobby is construction; he has chaired several major construction projects of the Archdiocese of Ibadan and his home diocese of Auchi. Felix and his wife, Serran Magdalene U. Dokpesi, are blessed with children and grandchildren.

 

 

 

 

Charles Furr

 

Charles (Chuck) Furr, Trustee, cfurr@serrainternational.org, is the 8th of 11 children and grew up as an active farm boy near Waseca, Minnesota, USA. After 12 years of Catholic education at Sacred Heart Grade and High School, he graduated from the University of Minnesota with a BS Degree in Agricultural Education, intending to teach Vocational Agriculture  However, he spent 33 years with the Agricultural Department of Dow Chemical Company in sales and marketing.

 

Joining the Serra Club of Honolulu in 1993, he has been a President and District Governor within Serra before joining the SI Board. He is active in his parish, the Knights of Columbus, the Vocations Committee of LARC (Leadership Association of Religious Communities) and more, he stays busy, respecting the memory of his deceased wife, Marilyn, who too, made great contribution to Serra, especially in helping to make the Regional Convention of California, Nevada and Hawaii such a success in October, 2004.

 

Chuck has two adult children and five grandchildren.

 

 

 

 

Affonso Iannone

 

Affonso Iannone, Trustee, aiannone@serrainternational.org. Affonso J Iannone was born in São Paulo, SP, Brazil, where he obtained a bachelor's degree in electrical and mechanical engineering form the Polytechnic School of the University of São Paulo , and a master's degree in business administration for the FGV University of São Paulo, associated with Harvard University,Cambridge, Massachusetts.

 

He worked for Ansaldo Energia Co., his entire life.  He was responsible for the erection of electrical power plants in Brazil and South America , and in 1980 he became managing director of this Italian Group in Brazil.

 

He joined the Serra Club of São Paulo in June of 1964.

 

In these 50 years of Serra life he was president of his club, governor of the Serra district 112, and Coordinator of the Brazilian Region South I . He became President of Serra International in 1998 and later became the President of the Brazilian Serra Council.

 

 

 

 

Robert (Bob) Labat, Trustee, rlabat@serrainternational.org,  is a member of the Serra Club of Northwest Hennepin, MN. After graduating from St. John’s University (class of 1959) in Collegeville, MN, and serving as an officer in the US Army, Bob owned and operated several businesses in the financial services, manufacturing and real estate industries.

 

Upon the death of Bob and wife Dixie’s oldest sons, Paul and Tim in 1985 and 1986, he sold or transferred interest in all of his businesses to others. “With the help of a priest friend and others I accepted the need to accept God’s plan (Jer. 29) and depend on His faith. . . In May, 2003, our fourth son, Pat, died in an accident. Our Lord is kind, we still have our third son, David, now 48, and four grandchildren.”

 

Bob now runs a promotional incentive firm specializing in working with non-profit organizations in Minnesota and around the US.

For the past 20 years, Bob has been a member of two Serra clubs. Currently, he is a member of the Northwest Hennepin Serra Club in Wayzata, MN. He has served as club president, district governor, regional director and on Serra’s USA Council Board for five years. Most recently, he served as a member of the SI/USAC Dialogue Committee, the Serra International Search Committee for a new executive director, and he is currently chairs the Consolidated Administrative Offices Task Force of Serra International and USAC. Bob will become president of the USA Council on June 1 , 2014.

 

Says Bob, “My guiding phrase at this time of my life is the three F’s for which I am grateful: Faith, Family and Friends (most of whom are Serrans throughout the US and world)!”

 

 

 

 

Giuseppe Miccoli, Trustee, gmiccoli@serrainternational.org, has been a member of the Serra Club of Ferrara, District 76 Emilia Romagna, Italy, since 2004. He served two terms as club presidentand two terms as District 76 governor. Giussepe was a member of the Serra International Nominating Committee for three years. From 2011-2013, he served as president of Forum San Maurelio, a Catholic sodality of six groups including the Serra clubs of Ferrara and Pomposa. 

 

Giuseppe is an Opus Dei co-operator, a Catholic Alliance Association member, a member of Serra Pomposa-Speyer Friends Association, church pastoral staff member and pastoral co-operator of St. Benedict Salesian parish, and a member of Ferrara-Comacchio Diocese, Pastoral Office for Laity.

 

Michael Moloney

 

Michael Moloney, Trustee, is the 6th of 7 children growing up and currently residing in the St Louis, Missouri area. Mike and his wife Ann have 9 children ranging from age 10 to 30. The four oldest have served proudly in the U.S. Armed Forces. The oldest David (30) served 6 years in the Navy and is now a charter boat captain in Key West, FL. with his fiancé Krissy. Elise (25) served 4 active years in the Air Force and is now a member of the Air National Guard living with her husband Tony Rich who also served in the Air Force. They live next to Mike and Ann on “the compound” with their charming 16 month old daughter Debra Jean. Lauren (22) just moved back from duty at Hickam, AFB in Hawaii with her fiancé Ryan Slough. They will married in Oct and will make their home in the St Louis area. And yes they did see Chuck Furr out there a few times along with a couple “required” visits from mom and Dad. Mary (19) is finishing her first year in the Air Force and is stationed at Beale AFB, CA. If you were at the Sacramento convention this year you may have met Mary. Ben (16), James (14), Catherine (In Heaven), Doug (12) and Mikey Jr. (10) round out the gang.

 

Mike joined the Serra Club of St Louis in 2007 and served as membership chair for 2 years helping keep membership well over 100 members. Mike was also a member of the Serra International Nominating Committee for 2013. Mike’s wife Ann is currently the president of the St Louis Serra Club and also serves on the board of the Serra International Foundation.

 

Mike has his own financial planning and investment advisory firm in Kirkwood, Missouri. Mike graduated for the University of Missouri – Columbia in 1985. Mike has earned his Certified Financial Planner, Chartered Financial Consultant and Chartered Life Underwriter designations. He is also finishing up his Masters of Science in Financial Planning this year. He enjoys his music ministry, ice hockey, snow skiing and their log cabin on the Current River.

 

 

 

 

 

Maria Gemma Sarteschi, Trustee, msarteschi@serrainternational.org, is a member of the Serra Club of Pisa, for whom she has served as president twice. In addition, she has been District 71 governor, VP of Programs for the Italian national council of Serra, President of Serra's Italian national council, and she has served twice as president for the Italian National Congress. She has also served on the Serra International Nomination Committee.

 

Gemma is a widow with one daughter. Two years ago, she retired from a bank management position and now runs a restaurant, travel agency and B & B.

 

 

 

 

Robert Rudman

 

Robert ("Bob") Rudman, Trustee, rrudman@serrainternational.org, Married 53 years to Missy, 4 married children, 6 grandchildren; resides in Franklin, TN. Both an Economics major & hockey player graduating from Boston College. Marketing Management responsibilities with National Broadcasting Co. (Huntley-Brinkley, Jeopardy & Leahr McNeil shows), American Brands & Johnson & Johnson before starting a manufacturers's representative company which developed for 20 years new markets of distribution & products for many blue chip companies. Currently serving on the Boards of: Grace Works Ministries (70 churches which help disadvantaged families exit poverty as well as provide for their immediate needs for food, clothing, shelter & medical), & the Children's Kindness Network (teaching children to stop bullying before it starts). The Heritage Foundation of Williamson County (1,000 members with preservation as their goal) has honored him for volunteering.  Received the Exemplary Community Volunteer Award for 2014 and 2015. Volunteer with the Dominican Sisters of Saint Cecilia's at Aquinas College having served on their Board as well as the School Board of St. Matthews Church. Although retired involved in marketing- consulting for many non-profit organizations. 

 

 

 

 

 

Patrick Ugbana

Patrick Ugbana, VP for Programs, pugbana@serrainternational.org.

John Liston

 

John Liston, Executive Director,  jliston@serrainternational.org - After graduating from Archbishop Quigley High School Seminary, John earned a Bachelor of Science from the Darla Moore School of Businessmen at the University of South Carolina, receiving degrees in international business, human resources management, and entrepreneurship.  He obtained a Juris Doctorate from Loyola University Chicago School of Law with a certificate in advocacy. 

 

Before becoming Executive Director of Serra, John worked for the law firm of Sanchez Daniels & Hoffman, LLP, as a civil defense attorney.  In addition to his work for Serra, John is an adjunct professor at Loyola University Chicago School of Law, where he teaches courses in negotiation, mediation, and client counseling.  John also serves as the treasurer for Innovation Experts, a non-profit that provides support services for public libraries.