Meet the SIPA Board of Directors
Rick M. Garcia has over 25 years of leadership experience ranging in the fields of government, nonprofit and private sectors across the nation. He most recently served as the Regional Administrator for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's (HUD) Region VIII in the administration of President Barack Obama. In addition, Rick was designated as Senior Policy Advisor to HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan on Sustainability representing the field offices. He also served as HUD liaison to the Denver Metropolitan's Regional Air Quality Council which advised the Governor and the General Assembly on Environmental Protection Agency's air quality standards. Read More
Tony Gherardini is the Director of Operations and Cabinet Affairs in the Colorado Governor’s Office. In this role he serves as the chief operating officer of the State, oversees statewide performance management and works with the Governor’s Chief of Staff to manage the Governor’s Cabinet. Previously, Tony worked as the Deputy Executive Director of Operations for the Colorado Department of Human Services. In this role, he supported the Executive Director and oversaw internal support services and direct services provided by the Department. These direct services include the Colorado Division of Youth Services, the state Mental Health Institutes, the State’s Regional Center System, and the state's Veterans Community Living Centers. Prior to being appointed to this role, Tony served in multiple roles within the Department of Human Services.
Before working for the State of Colorado, Tony served with the US. Army in Afghanistan, and worked as a Detective for the Lakewood, CO Police Department. Tony is a 2017 Aspen Institute Children and Families Ascend Fellow, and is a former member of the Colorado Commission for Criminal and Juvenile Justice. Tony holds a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Colorado Denver, and a bachelor's degree in political science from Colorado State University.
Billy is married and lives in Denver, CO. He enjoys traveling, reading, and enjoying Colorado's trails and wilderness.
Mary Kay Hogan, Vice President, R & R Partners
Mary Hogan began her career by serving as a legal counsel to the General Assembly in the non-partisan Office of Legislative Legal Services, where she served on the tax and finance team. In this capacity, Hogan drafted legislation and legal memoranda for members of the General Assembly. Hogan has lobbied for the Colorado General Assembly since 2002.
Gilbert Ortiz is currently in his second four year term as the Pueblo County Clerk and Recorder. Before his term as Clerk, Mr. Ortiz was elected to the Pueblo City Council in 2003 where he served as the District 2 Councilman for 3 years. As a city Councilman, he served as Vice President in 2005 and Work Session Chair in 2006. Currently Mr. Ortiz is an active member of the Standards Board to the Elections Assistance Commission, SCORE Advisory, CSTARS, CCCA Legislative Committee, NALEO, NACO, and NACRC. He is President Elect of the Colorado County Clerks Association, and Chair of the CCCA Education Committee. Locally he is a member of Pueblo Catholic Charities, Pueblo Latino Chamber, and Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce. Born and raised in Pueblo, Colorado, Gilbert still resides in the Belmont area. He is married and has two children. He is a proud East High graduate of 1989. Read more.
Hannah Parsons, Chief Executive Officer, Exponential Impact
Hannah is the Chief Executive Officer at Exponential Impact. Prior to her position at Exponential Impact, she spent 2 years with the Colorado Springs Chamber & EDC, recently, in the position of Chief Economic Development Officer. Hannah has worked in financial services, real estate, community and economic development. She co-founded Epicentral Coworking in Downtown Colorado Springs and has served the startup community in numerous volunteer roles. Exponential Impact is a mashup of Hannah’s diverse career history and interests. It perpetuates her passion for business and community, and fuels her love of learning.
Jack Tate, State Senator, State of Colorado
From Centennial, CO, Representative Jack Tate is in his first term in the Statehouse. Prior to public service, Rep. Tate spent over 25 years in business, most lately as a principal in one of Colorado’s largest private firms. His work centered around developing and managing engineering and capital projects related to improving infrastructure and commercial buildings. With a BS in Engineering, Rep. Tate also has an MBA in Marketing and an MS in Finance. More about Representative Jack Tate can be found at www.jacktate.org.
Kara Veitch was selected by Governor Jared Polis in February 2019 to serve as State Personnel Director and Executive Director of the Department of Personnel & Administration. She began her role with DPA as the Deputy Executive Director and Chief of Staff in July 2013. Kara brings extensive non-profit, public, and private-sector experience to her role. In her time with DPA, Kara shepherded a series of initiatives aimed at making the department more collaborative in its service to state agencies. Along with customer service and process improvement initiatives, Kara is focused on making the State of Colorado an employer of choice by focusing on employee engagement initiatives, policies, and other improvements that will bring the state workforce into alignment with best practices in the private sector. Read more.
Mike Weissman, State Representative, State of Colorado
Long time Colorado resident and University of Colorado graduate, Mike Weissman, holds a doctor of law degree and is a member of the Colorado House of Representatives, representing District 36. Weissman has been a member of the Colorado Bar since 2014 and has a background in economics and technology. He previously served on the Arapahoe County Citizen Budget Committee.
Rachel Zenzinger, State Senator, State of Colorado
Rachel Zenzinger is the Colorado Senator from Arvada, representing Senate District 19 in Jefferson County. Senator Zenzinger grew up on the Western Slope and came to the Front Range to attend college at Regis University. She received both a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts degree in Education, as well as her teaching license. She has a deep background in education and a strong passion for public schools. She has worked as the Project Manager for Colorado Educator Voice Fellowship, a branch of America Achieves. She previously served as advisor to the Colorado Opportunity Scholarship Initiative program in the Colorado Department of Higher Education; and she worked for Regis University in the Master of Arts in Education department where she specialized in Teacher Leadership. Since moving to Arvada in 2002, Senator Zenzinger has served the community in a variety of capacities, including as twice-elected member of the Arvada City Council, where she filled the role as Mayor Pro Tem. She left the City Council to accept an appointment to the State Senate, where she served in the 2014 session. Upon her election in 2016, Rachel returned to the State Senate, where she serves on the Senate Education Committee, the Senate Transportation Committee, the Statutory Revision Committee, and the Interim School Finance Committee.