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Chairman's Council for Prosperity Initiatives

When chosen to lead the Board of County Commissioners, it was my privilege to organize the legislative committees of the County Commission. In addition to the six standing committees, I took the opportunity to establish the Chairman’s Council for Prosperity Initiatives. As charged, the Council met regularly to "assess the progress we are making as a governing body in advancing policies to improve the quality of life or our citizens."

The Council met 14 times to garner input from community leaders, policy experts and academics in order to craft solutions applicable to Miami-Dade County. As a result of these deliberations, many "prosperity" policies were suggested and subsequently adopted by the full Board of County Commissioners.


The Chairman’s Council for Prosperity Initiatives was established as a forum for ideas to emerge and for policies to be discussed. As such, the members of the Council heard 29 different presentations on a range of topics relative to the prosperity agenda. Ideas for legislation emerged from the process and legislation was properly introduced through the standing committees of the Board. 


  • Ned Murray, PhD, Metropolitan Institute of Florida International University: Indicators of Income Inequality - April 27, 2015
  • Alayne Untergerger, PhD, Associate Research Director, Research Institute on Social and Economic Policy (RISEP), Center for Labor Research and Studies, FIU, Miami, Florida: Community Benefits Agreements - April 27, 2015
  • Rebecca Vallas, Director of Policy Poverty to Prosperity Program, Center for American Progress, Washington, D.C.: Employment Opportunity Initiatives – April 27, 2015
  • Santiago Leon, Miami-Dade County Social and Economic Development Council: Healthcare Prosperity Summit- April 27, 2015
  • Emily Eisenhauer, PhD, Housing and Community Development, University of Miami, Office of Civic & Community Engagement: Overview of Data Regarding Affordable Housing in Miami-Dade County - June 3, 2015
  • Mario Artecona, Chief Executive Officer, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Miami: Rental or Ownership? An Analysis of Housing Dollars by Miami-Dade County - June 3, 2015
  • James Carras, Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School: Regional Housing Trends and Inclusionary Zoning - June 3, 2015
  • Michael Liu, Director Miami-Dade County Public Housing and Community Development Department: Homeownership & Mixed-Income Housing - June 29, 2015
  • Stephanie Killian, Manager Affordable Housing Section, Montgomery County Department of Housing and Community Affairs (Maryland): 40 Years of Inclusionary Housing Programs in Montgomery County - June 29, 2015
  • Bill Johnson, Florida Secretary of Commerce / President and CEO, Enterprise Florida: Economic Development Incentives - July 27, 2015
  • Vanessa Benavides, Financial Stability Director, United Way of Miami-Dade: Financial Stability as Economic Development - July 27, 2015
  • Pandwe Gibson, PhD, Founder and CEO, Ecotech Vision: Environmentally-Sustainable Economic Development - September 28, 2015
  • Larry K. Williams, Beacon Council President and CEO: Miami-Dade County Economic Development Programs and Policies - September 28, 2015
  • Marcus Dixon, Office of the Chair Policy Advisor: BankOn Partnership with the United Way of Miami-Dade - September 28, 2015
  • Matt Haggman, Knight Foundation Miami Program Director: Economic Development Initiatives and the Expectations of Entrepreneurs - October 26, 2015
  • Felecia Hatcher, Code Fever Co-Founder: Programmatic Support for Women and Minorities in Technology - October 26, 2015
  • Carol Merrill, Metro Transit Division Customer Services Supervisor, Department of Transportation, King County, Washington: Low Income Fare Program - November 30, 2015
  • Marta Viciedo, Transit Action Committee (TRAC): Telecommuting is an Option - November 30, 2015
  • Maribel Balbin,  President, League of Women Voters of Miami-Dade County President and Pamela A. Izvanariu, M.A., J.D., LL.M, Director, Research Institute on Social and Economic Policy (RISEP), Florida International University: Economic Security for Women in Miami-Dade County - February 22, 2016
  • Pamela Hollingsworth, M.Ed., Senior Vice President, Strategic Initiatives and Program Development, Early Learning Coalition of Miami-Dade/Monroe: The State of Child Care in Miami-Dade County – February 22, 2016
  • Lili S. Bach, Florida Political Director, Service Employees International Union, 32BJ: Wage Policies of Miami-Dade County - February 22, 2016
  • Manuel Armada, Chief of Planning Research and Robert Hesler, Senior Economic Analyst: Miami-Dade County Business Profile -  March 28, 2016
  • Jacqueline Sosa, Regional Director: Overview of the Small Business Development Center at FIU – March 28, 2016
  • The Honorable Charles Dusseau, Former Miami-Dade County Commissioner and Secretary of Commerce, the State of Florida: Opportunities to Assist Small Business Enterprises in Miami-Dade County - April 28, 2016
  • Shira Markoff, Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED): Children’s Savings Accounts and National Best Practices - July 18, 2016
  • Cynthia Hernandez, Executive Director, South Florida AFL-CIO and Former Senior Research Associate, RISEP of FIU: Earning a Living Wage in Miami-Dade County - October 24, 2016
  • Dedrick Asante-Muhammad, Director, Racial Wealth Divide Project, Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED), Washington, DC: Racial Wealth Divide in Miami – December 19, 2016

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