About the Board of Directors

The Heartland Workforce Investment Board, Inc. d/b/a CareerSource Heartland, Board of Directors provide policy and guidance along with the general direction of CareerSource Florida, Inc. the state's chief policy organization for all CareerSource Heartland's activities affecting DeSoto, Hardee, and Highlands counties.

The Board is mandated legislatively to have representatives from the following categories: private sector, education, labor, community-based organizations, economic development, veterans, and non-public post-secondary educational institutions.

Board Members

Local Elected Officials – The Executive Board

The Honorable Jack Richie - Chair / Chief Elected Official

Highlands County Board of County Commissioners

The Honorable Mike Thompson - Vice Chair

Hardee County Board of County Commissioners

The Honorable Terry Hill

Desoto County Board of County Commissioners

The Honorable Kelly Owens

Okeechobee County Board of County Commissioners

Board Officers 2016-2017


William ("Bill") J. Nielander - William J. Nielander, P.A.


David Royal - Nutrient Stewardship Director, The Nature Conservancy


Lois Hilton - Human Resources Director, DeSoto Memorial Hospital

Board Members

Rhonda Beckman - CEO
The ARC (formerly Ridge Area ARC)

Russell Brown - Provost
Dixon Hendry Campus - Indian River State College

Mary Kay Burns - Owner
Burns Citrus

Kevin Cundiff - Operations General Manager

Mary Dow - President
Dow Realty, Inc.

Benjamin Dunn - Development Services Director
Highlands County BOCC

Joshua Exendine - Union Treasurer, Executive Board
Hardee County Professional Firefighters Union, Local 3471

Dan Graham - President/CEO
DeSoto Home Health Care, Inc.

Jessica Hart-Howard - Financial Advisor
Edward Jones

Vanessa Hernandez - SVP ll South Regional Mgr., Retail Dely
MidFlorida South/MidFlorida Credit Union

Yessenia "Jessy" Irizarry - Staffing Manager
Sunshine Staffing of Highlands, Inc.

Ken Kenworthy - Superintendent
Okeechobee County School District

Bill Lambert - Executive Director
Hardee County Economic Development Office

Dr. Thomas C. Leitzel, President
South Florida State College

Michelle Myers - Director of Human Resources
Florida Hospital Heartland Division

Wayne Olson, Area Director
Florida DOE/Vocational Rehabilitation Services

Lowell Pritchard, CEO
Pritchards & Associates

Victoria M. Provau, Accounting Supervisor/HR Mgr.
First State Bank of Arcadia

Gary Ritter, Assis. Director of Govt. & Community Affairs
Florida Farm Bureau Federation

Raymond D. Royce, Executive Director
Highland County Citrus Growers Assn.

Donald Samuels, American Legion Post 2
Representing Military Veterans

Sherry Sapp, Director of Admissions
NBI Truck Driver Training

Sandra Swanson, Project Director
AARP Foundation, SCSEP