by John Lipkin
It’s hard to imagine a world before Robert Downey Jr. and Scarlett Johansson took part in their annual (or more) Marvel Cinematic Universe films, let alone before Tobey Maguire donned the red and blue suit of Spiderman.
But in 1999 Marvel was treading water trying to stay afloat. Changing consumer preferences away from print comics, the bursting bubble of the comic book industry in 1996, poor management practices at the top, and overspending sent the company tail spinning into bankruptcy. When it resurfaced, it did so with only $3 million in cash on hand, $250 million in high yield debt, and a stock price that hit a nadir of $0.96 per share.
That’s when Marvel’s Board of Directors took some key actions to right the ship. The Board pushed to bring in a new CEO, worked with Marvel’s management to heavily license Marvel’s superheroes for everything from school supplies to video games, spearheaded an international expansion, and guided the company in raising $525 million to create 10 movies, which are now popularly named Marvel’s Cinematic Universe. In 2009, Marvel was sold to Disney for $4.3 billion with a share price that had swelled to $54. The Marvel Cinematic Universe alone has grossed over $13.5 billion since 2002, making it the highest grossing franchise ever.
This story underscores the value that a good board can add to a company. And this is not unique to boards of for-profit organizations. Nonprofit organizations like CBOB still require a very similar set of competencies to drive growth and success of the nonprofit. Among overlapping features like role clarity, diverse skillsets, and strong relationships/trust between the board and the executive director/CEO, perhaps the most especially important feature to a nonprofit board is connection to organization’s mission.
I ultimately joined CBOB’s Board for that last reason. When I was asked to join in 2013, CBOB had been going through a difficult year. As somebody who – through service trips, service with the University of Florida chapter, and an internship with the organization – had seen first-hand the value that the organization provides and had been greatly impacted by it myself, I wanted to help CBOB get to a place where it would recover and thrive.
Over the last four and a half years, my role has shifted to a balance of the tactical, strategic, and mission-driven. Moreover, CBOB’s Board has made some incredible additions that have enabled us to evolve more and more into an effective board. Combine that with the transformational leadership of Andrea Ortega and the great work of her team, and I am confident that we will get to that point where we are providing the optimal level of guidance, support, and accountability. I’m just blessed that I get to be a part of it and help guide this wonderful organization.
by Madelyn Brenner
CBOB is thrilled to welcome 12 new and 16 returning interns to our team this Spring! We are so excited to have them all join our fifteenth year of CBOB service. Our Operations Director, Shana Call says, "I’m looking forward to seeing what our interns have to offer this semester and how they will help CBOB make a difference in the community."
After a lengthy selection process, our leadership team chose the best of the best to continue our organization’s mission and help us reach new heights! Twelve interns were chosen out of the 26 who applied, meaning those chosen were the top performers in their respective fields.
Applicants went through two rounds of interviews and were also asked to perform a position-specific task in order for CBOB to get a taste of their skills in the position for which they applied. Only those applicants who demonstrated a passion for our mission and eagerness to learn more about how to give back were chosen.
With a range in interests from non-profit work to a career in law and nearly everything in between, our interns demonstrate a diversity that allows them to see from various perspectives, giving our organization the experience and knowledge it needs to continue thriving while always keeping in mind our goal of empowering through education.
Here's a little more information to allow you to get to know each and every one of our fabulous interns!
MacKenzie Felmet, Fundraising Intern
I chose to be a part of Children Beyond Our Borders because any time I felt insecure about my future I could look back on m educational accomplishments and feel proud of myself, and I really hope to give this empowerment and pride in oneself to others. Children Beyond Our Borders is not just an initiative to provide education and therefore opportunities for life advancement, but it also provides advancement in one's own self confidence through realizing one's intellect. I am from St. Augustine, Florida and currently I attend the University of Florida. I am a nursing major currently and I hope to be a nurse practitioner. A fun fact about me is that my father actually owns a store that sells hot sauce, and I am used to everything that was cooked at my house being spicy. I guess that's why I can handle the intensity of any medical degree at UF!
Madelyn Brenner, Public Relations & Social Media Intern
I am so excited to be joining the team at Children Beyond Our Borders in fighting for empowerment through education. I am interested in potentially working for a non-profit in the future, and I figured this would be a great way to get my foot in the door. I am majoring in Spanish and International Studies, with a minor in International Development and Humanitarian Assistance, so this position seemed to be right up my alley! I can't wait to see what the semester and future beyond have in store and I'm very lucky to be a part of this amazing team!
Jennifer Nicholas, Public Relations & Social Media Intern
I am from Jupiter, Florida. I am currently a junior at the University of Florida and I am majoring in marketing and minoring in nonprofit organization leadership. I am ecstatic to be one of the Public Relations and Social Media interns for the Spring 2018 term. After I graduate, I hope to hold a marketing position with a nonprofit organization that positively impacts children’s lives. Therefore, this internship seemed to be the perfect fit for me! I am really looking forward to working with the children and being able to make a difference in their lives. This is my first year with Children Beyond Our Borders and I am so excited to be a part of such a great organization. I can't wait to see all that we accomplish this year.
Tiffany Wut, Communications Liason
I am a junior at The University of Central Florida majoring in Biomedical Sciences. I am UCF's Campus Communications Liaison for Spring 2018 and I hope to pursue a career in pediatrics. I am originally from Boca Raton, Florida and I miss the beach being 15 minutes away from me. I am glad to be apart of the VIP intern program because it has shaped me into the leader I am today. CBOB has given me the opportunity to give back to the community as well as creating a bond with the children. I never dread going to my meetings and socials because I want to spread CBOB's mission. I cannot wait to see what CBOB has for me this semester!
Brooke Barber, Logistic Coordinator
I am a student at the University of Central Florida studying health sciences. I have a passion for travel and love to do so in a way that allows me to create a positive impact in the communities that I visit. I have traveled to about ten countries outside of America and have plans for visiting many more. I am passionate about my internship with Children Beyond Our Borders because it creates a platform for me to make a difference not only in my local community but in countries all around the world as well.
December Slater, Data & Analytics Intern
Hello all! I’m December and I started interning with Children Beyond our Borders at the start of this year. I like to help out, something that I hope shows in my work aiding students in solving computer problems, volunteering with CBOB, or assisting with running a small table-top club. I’m a senior at the University of Florida, getting my degree in Business Administration. It’s my hope to move out of state and get involved with the human resource practices at Riot Games or Blizzard Entertainment. I’m looking forward to a bright semester with CBOB and doing what I can to aid this organization!
Alexandra Hegley, Accounting Intern
Hi, I'm Alex! I am currently a third year Accounting major at the University of Florida. I am originally from a small South Florida town called Stuart. This is my first year involved with CBOB and I'm looking forward to being able to make a change in my local community and on a global scale as well. I admire the mission of CBOB and am extremely passionate about everything it involves, since education can bring so many new opportunities to the youth that they may not have had prior. I also appreciate that I will be able to gain hands on experience that will influence my future career goals and apply what I am learning to this internship. I'm thrilled to be a part of such a great team with such a big impact!
Estrella Alvarado, Community Outreach Intern
I am the Community Outreach at UCF and this is my very first internship so it holds a special place in my heart. The Bound for Peace trip was what caught my attention at first because I've always dreamed on going on a service trip my whole life and so I decided I wanted to be more involved before my dream can become a reality. I applied to be a part of the VIP family because growing up I wish I had individuals who were so dedicated in reinforcing how powerful education really is and being born in Peru, I am aware of all the difficulties young children face. CBOB means a lot to me because I can help educate and open the door of possibilities for the young minds of our future and that is very valuable to me. I am currently studying Public administration and Nonprofit management and I am very passionate about advocating for the mental health of everyone around the world especially making it known to the children. I love dancing, traveling, coffee shops, parks, reading, makeup and going to museums. For anyone that didn't know, my name means Star in English.
Minyoung Kim, Health Initiatives Intern
I am a second year Microbiology and Cell Sciences major and I plan to minor in Bioinformatics. In the future I hope to attend optometry school. I was originally born and raised in South Korea before immigrating to the United States. A fun fact about me is that I recently passed my citizenship test and I will soon be a US citizen!. I choose this internship because I saw it as an chance to give back to the community. CBOB means to me an opportunity to be proactive, passionate, and working to make the world a better place. I have been diligently working on the Community Health Fair for the past year in order to provide general healthcare services to those in need. I will soon see my work paid off soon when we finally hold our clinic this week!
Mariam Hussein, Campus Communications Liason
I am a third year majoring in biology. I am an
aspiring dentist and I hope to one day be involved with a non-profit dental clinic. I chose to be
involved with CBOB because I wanted to give back to the community and provide a helping
hand. CBOB encourages empowerment through education and I strongly believe in the power of
education and its ability to uplift individuals.
Cynthia Colas, Accounting Intern
I am a third-year undergraduate student studying for a double major in finance and accounting with a minor in management informational systems at Florida State University. I am the President of the FSU National Organization for Women and Florida Young Feminist Taskforce. I am a member of multiple organizations such as Students for a Democratic Society, College Democrats of America, National Organization for Women, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, American Bar Association, Democratic Socialist of America, College of Progressives, and the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Some of my achievements range from establishing the first professional accounting organization at FAU, receiving a participation scholarship from the National Collegiate Scholars Society, and being selected as a scholarship participant for the FICPA Accounting Orlando Leadership Symposium and AIPAC Washington D.C Policy Conference.
During this winter break, I had the pleasure of celebrating Christmas Eve with close friends and family members. I had the pleasure of telling my family and friends the many political adventures that I underwent during my academic stay in Tallahassee. Both my family and friends are ecstatic about my new career path in Children Beyond Our Borders and what the future has in store for me.
Samantha Boddupalli, Grant Writing Intern
My name is Samantha Boddupalli, but most people call me Sam. I chose an internship with Children Beyond Our Borders because I have a passion for non-profit work and education. From a young age, my parents emphasized the importance of education, which is why I am fighting to give others the opportunities with which I have been blessed. To me, CBOB represents the dreams of children everywhere of a bright future. It means equal opportunity for education regardless of race, gender, or social status. I am currently attending the University of Florida as a third year biochemistry major, with plans to go into medicine. Although I am from Tampa, both of my parents are from India. Here's a fun fact about me: I can speak four languages. I am so excited to see what the semester brings!
Valeria Reyes, Community Outreach Intern
I am a first-year Political Science and International Studies Double-Major. I am also looking into a minor in International Development and Human Assistance and receiving a certificate in International Relations. My birthplace is Bogotá, Colombia, however, I mostly grew up in Orlando, Florida. Children Beyond Our Borders is a right fit for me because it not only pursues the same goals I wish to achieve later in my life but it also focuses on my home country. When I was six years old my family was given the blessing to come to America and truly live the "American Dream" with lots of sweat and hard work. I know because I have experienced how hard life can be on someone who came from a society with limited opportunities. For the majority of my life, I have wanted to be able to give back to the children of my country by providing them with the opportunity to succeed academically as well as being physically and mentally healthy. In my future, I seek to get a Masters in International Relations and then work for a non-profit organization that aims to help the impoverished through education and access to healthcare. My dream job would be to work for UNICEF, especially in refugee camps and war zones.
Sharna-Kaye Silburn, Fundraising Intern
I chose to be a part of Children Beyond Our Borders because I am super passionate about the development of children and their futures, so much so that I want to take some years off when I graduate to become an elementary school teacher for awhile. Children Beyond Our Borders gives me so many opportunities to help children behind closed doors but also to be hands on with them and their futures. I am from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, born in Jamaica and I am currently in my third year at the University of Central Florida as a Criminal Justice major, I plan on going to law school and becoming a juvenile defense attorney because as I stated before children mean a lot to me and I feel as an attorney I can be a deterring factor in a child's life. A fun fact about me is that I am a red belt in Tae Kwon Do, which is one belt away from a black belt.
We also welcome a new addition to our Managers team:
Julia Lasley, Service Trip Director
After moving to Orlando, I wanted to explore ways to give
back to my new home by using my background in and love for education/international service. I chose CBOB for its dedication to creating opportunities for kids and communities that need it the most. To me, CBOB is a vehicle for empowerment and global change. I am originally from Cocoa Beach, Florida. After finishing high school, I attended FSU (Go Noles!) for my B.S. in International Affairs. I served as a Teach for America Corps Member in Jacksonville until 2016. This is currently my fourth year teaching middle school English and second year in graduate school (Lehigh University) for my Master’s degree in International Education. My career goals include teaching abroad and/or working
for a nonprofit in the field of international development with an
emphasis on girls’ education. This year I will visit my 30th country! And I’ve never had a cavity...yet!
We have already seen our interns get involved in our organization and community, and we can’t wait to see what else they accomplish in the upcoming semester!
Find out more about our upcoming community health fair!
by Jennifer Nicholas
In order to stay healthy and therefore live a long and happy life, you must take preventative healthcare measures. Preventative health care consists of any medical service that helps you avoid serious health problems or emergencies. Unfortunately, millions of people die each year from preventable illnesses. For example, heart disease and strokes have been the main causes of death worldwide for the past 15 years. The fact that these deaths could have easily been prevented with better health care measures proves that preventative health care is vital in order to keep your body healthy. Due to preventable health care being such an important issue, Children Beyond Our Borders Inc. will be hosting a completely free community health fair in Alachua County on January 20th, 2018.
There are many different ways for you to take preventative healthcare measures. To begin, you should visit your health care provider at least once a year for an annual checkup, even if you believe that you are healthy. During your checkup, you will be screened for diseases, told about diseases that you may be susceptible to in the future, and have all your vaccinations updated. All of the previously mentioned services are a crucial part of lowering your risk for serious health problems and diseases, which is why free physical exams and basic consultations will be provided at CBOB’s upcoming community health fair. In addition, your health care provider will be able to give you advice on preventative healthcare measures that would best suit you. If you are educated about the proper preventative healthcare measures you need to be taking, you will be able to live a healthier lifestyle and be one step ahead in preventing disease.
Along with having annual checkups, you must also engage in healthy habits. Good nutrition and exercising regularly are two main components to living a healthy lifestyle. By eating healthy, you are giving your body the essential nutrients it needs to remain healthy, so it can defend itself against diseases. To promote wellness and a healthy lifestyle, CBOB will be providing healthy snacks at the community health fair. In addition to good nutrition, regularly exercising is also a facet of a healthy lifestyle because you are decreasing your risk of serious health issues, such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and the chances of having a stroke. There will be interactive games and a Zumba class at the health fair in order for you to have fun while you are exercising and to get your heart rate going!
Here at CBOB, we believe preventative healthcare is extremely important. This is why we host our health fairs. Our next health fair will be taking place in Alachua County on January 20th, 2018 from 1-5 PM. The community health fair is open to anyone, but is aimed at helping underprivileged families who struggle to afford healthcare. The health fair will be located at: 13719 NW 146 Ave Alachua, FL 32615.
Find out more about the location of one of our Bound for Peace trips!
by Christina Mouttet
Colombia’s second-largest city is the gorgeous city of Medellin. This city is also the site for one of our Bound for Peace service trips this March. From beautiful attractions, kind people, and amazing food- it definitely should be on your bucket list. By signing up to volunteer, you will get to dive into the culture and experience this amazing city. The list of reasons Medellin is so beautiful is endless, but here are a few:
1. It is known as the “City of Eternal Spring” due to the gorgeous flowers that bloom all year long. We can thank Medellin’s near perfect temperature of (70-75 °F (22-23 °C) for this. There is even an annual festival dedicated solely to flowers, called "Feria de las Flores." It is one of the most important social events of the year and even includes a pageant, musical concerts, and parades.
2. Medellin is famous for its street art, especially in the Comuna 13 neighborhood.
3. Food. Bandeja Paisa is their national dish, and for good reason. It is made up of several components, including red beans, rice, plantain, avocado, pork belly, arepa, and fried egg.
Check out www.discovercolombia.com/bandeja-paisa for a recipe. Although, there is nothing better than going to Medellin and actually sampling the real thing!
4. Medellin is the fashion capital of Colombia. It is known for huge malls, two famous annual fashion shows, and being a hub for Colombia’s textile and apparel industry. It really is the place to be if you have any interest in fashion. Medellin's fashion extends to street style as well: visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=CmzujB41vaM to see more.
5. It is home to renowned artist Fernando Botero. He has even donated many of his pieces back to his city. To see more, check out Botero Plaza in Medellin.
These are only some of the highlights. You will just have to join us on our next trip to see the rest! Sign up today! Applications for our spring trip close January 21th and applications for our summer trip close February 25th.