Christopher Columbus High School

A Catholic School for Young Men in the Marist Tradition since 1958
About Us

Board of Directors

2017-18 Board

List of 23 items.

  • Doug Sawyer '75 | *Board Chairman, Executive Committee Member

    Is the President of Nason Consulting, a bank consulting company which provides strategic, operational, regulatory, management, staff and market guidance to community banks.  Prior to joining Nason, Doug served as the Executive Vice President of Bank Services at BankUnited where he he was responsible for core service departments including bank operations, information technology, corporate real estate, loan servicing, the call center, business continuity and disaster recovery. He also held the positions of Executive Vice President of Consumer Banking and of Wealth Management for BankUnited and spent more than 20 years with SunTrust Bank where he last held the positions of Executive Vice President of Private Client Services and Executive Vice President of the Retail Division. Doug earned a Bachelor’s degree in finance from Auburn University and is a holder of Series 7, 4, 24, 53, 63, and 65 Securities Licenses and of Florida Life Insurance and Variable Annuity Licenses.  Doug has served on the CCHS Alumni Association’s Executive Committee as Chairman in 2012/13 and on the Columbus Golf Tournament Committee since 1990.  He also serves on the St. Thomas University Advisory Board, the Florida Banker Association Board as their PAC Committee Chairman and on their Government Relations Committee, and is a past president of the Miami Chapter of the American Heart Association and of the West Dade Chamber of Commerce.  
  • Adrian Alfonso '98 | *Finance Committee Chairman, Executive Committee Member

    A tax director in the public accounting firm of Kaufman Rossin.  He has experience in tax consulting, compliance and accounting assistance servicing medium to large corporate and high net worth individual clients, as well as family owned corporate and partnership entities.  His responsibilities included assisting business owners with their day to day accounting needs, tax consulting and compliance, as well as, reviewing and preparing quarterly and annual compilations and reviews.   He received his Executive Master of Science in Taxation and a Bachelor's in Accounting from Florida International University. He holds a CPA and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Cuban-American CPA's Association, Inc. (Past-President).  He has served on the CCHS Alumni Executive Committee.  Most recently he was appointed by Governor Rick Scott as Chairman for the Early Learning Coalition of Miami/Dade & Monroe. 
  • Br. Kevin Handibode, F.M.S. | *Executive Committee Member

    Has spent over 42 years serving Christopher Columbus High School, holding many positions to include teacher, dean of discipline, varsity basketball coach, athletic director, development director, and principal.  Today, he is the president of the school, a position that he has held since 2000.  Br. Kevin became a Marist Brother in 1957 when he was just 18 years old and has dedicated his life to education ever since. Before starting at Columbus in 1966, Br. Kevin was a teacher and coach at Archbishop Molloy High School in New York, where he is originally from.  He also served as Principal at Marist High School in New Jersey for several years. It was Br. Kevin who started Columbus' development program back in the 1980s.  Since then he has been able to raise money for countless school projects including new buildings, renovations, and financial aid programs.  He holds a MA in Education from Hunter College (NY) and a BA in Latin from Marist College.  Br. Kevin is dedicated to provide the best education possible to the young men of Columbus.    In 2008, Br. Kevin was bestowed the Papal Cross, the highest medal that can be awarded by the Papacy.  He received the honor for his distinguished service to the church and for his devotion to Catholic education.
  • Tim Plummer '83 | *Buildings & Grounds Committee Chairman, Executive Committee Member

    Tim Plummer is the President of David Plummer & Associates, a leading transportation planning, traffic engineering, and civil engineering firm. Tim has a BSCE from North Carolina State University and an MBA from the University of Colorado.  He is a registered professional engineer in the State of Florida and has nearly 30 years of civil and traffic engineering experience with both the public and private sectors. His expertise includes transportation planning, transit planning, traffic engineering, traffic calming, parking analyses, site design, and geometric design.  Some of his major projects include the Downtown Miami Transportation Master Plan, the American Airlines Arena, the Coral Gables Trolley, the Shops at Merrick Park, and Baptist Hospital Cancer Institute.  He is a former Chairman of the School Board at both Columbus High School and Our Lady of Lourdes Academy.  Tim was Chairman of the Columbus Golf Tournament from 2002-17; he and his committee raised nearly $2M during that period.
  • Luis de la Aguilera ‘77 | *Marketing Committee Chairman

    Luis de la Aguilera is President, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), and a member of the board of directors at U.S. Century Bank.  Established in 2002 and headquartered in Miami, U.S. Century Bank is one of the largest Hispanic-owned community banks in the State with assets of nearly $1 billion and 17 full service banking centers throughout Miami-Dade and South Broward counties. He is also a member of the University of Miami College of Arts and Sciences Visiting Committee, Beacon Council, and CMO Council.  He has served on the advisory board of Christopher Columbus High School's CCNN and on the boards of the Dade Public Education Fund, the Spain-U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and Our Lady of Lourdes Academy.

    For the past five years, Luis has been involved with Castaways Against Cancer, a local charity whose mission is to help find a cure for cancer.  He kayaks 160 miles from Miami to Key West to raise money for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life of the Lower Keys.  Since joining the Castaways, de la Aguilera has helped lead the team in generating over $825,000 in sponsorships.  Last year alone, he was the charity’s top fundraiser, raising over $100,000.
  • Patrick Dyer '92 | *Technology Committee Chairman

    As a co-founder, board member and DigitalEra’s CEO, Patrick Dyer leads our talented team of experts dedicated to providing world-class security compliance solutions and services to businesses, the public sector and independent service providers. His vision for making world-class security products and service excellence affordable for organizations of all sizes is the driving force behind the entire team at DigitalEra, and is integral to what makes us uniquely different from other providers. Prior to DigitalEra, Patrick served in key security leadership roles at Microsoft and Merisel Latin America, Inc.
  • Mick Maspons '81 | *School Life Committee Chairman

    Miguel 'Mick' Maspons is a 1981 Columbus grad who went on to receive his BS from Harvard University and JD from Boston College. He represents foreign and domestic companies in a variety of corporate transactions and in many cases effectively serves as their outside general counsel. Mick possesses significant experience in a wide variety of business transactions, including entity formations and restructurings, corporate and shareholder disputes, mergers and acquisitions, venture and growth capital investments, divestitures, private equity and venture capital investments, complex joint ventures and related general corporate matters. He has represented general partners, private equity funds, entrepreneurs, and private and public companies in a variety of strategic and financial matters and transactions, employment matters as well as corporate governance matters.
  • Dr. Eileen McDonough | *Academic Committee Chairperson

    Is the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs at Barry University. She is a Professor of Higher Education Administration, teaching in the Masters and Doctoral programs in the School of Education.  She serves as the University NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative and is responsible for the initial and continuing eligibility of the student athletes at Barry, an NCAA Division II Institution.  Dr. McDonough holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry from Chestnut Hill College, a Master’s Degree in Chemistry from Marquette University, a Master of Business Administration from Barry University and a Doctorate in Higher Education Administration from Nova University.  She has over 40 years’ experience teaching at Barry University where she also has responsibilities for the Freshman Orientation Course, University Commencement and Assessment in the Division of Student Affairs.   She has served as a member of several NCAA Committees and National and local Boards.
  • Doug Yount ’67 | *Development Committee Chairman

    Is a financial planner at AmeriPlan Financial where he has worked since 2007.  He has over forty years of experience to include work in the banking, mortgage, and insurance industries.  He holds a Series 6, Life, Health and Variable Annuity License.    Prior to joining AmeriPlan, Doug was the  President of Columbia Title of Florida where he was responsible for title operations, sales production, and the profit center, among other responsibilities.  Doug earned his Bachelor of Science degree from Florida International University and completed a leadership development program at Eckerd College.   He is a member of the Mortgage Bankers Associations of Florida, Georgia, Carolinas, Tennessee, and Alabama.  He is affiliated with the Florida Chamber of Commerce, the Mortgage Bankers of Miami (Chairman, Education Committee, 1982-85), Trustee, Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce, Trustee, Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Board of Directors, Vice President, Habitat for Humanity – Greater Miami.
  • Matthew Bernhardt '89

    A licensed Certified Public Accountant who has worked for World Fuel Services as their Director of Accounting since 2003.  Prior to joining World Fuels Services, Matt was a Senior Auditor for Deloitte and Touche from 1997 to 2003. He holds a  a BA in Finance from the University of Florida and an MBA in Accounting from the University of Miami.  He has served on the Christopher Columbus High School Alumni Association's Executive Committee and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Boys and Girls Club of Miami, since 1999.        
  • Tom Bezold '71

    The Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Gencom, an international hotel owner and developer with a portfolio that includes Ritz Carlton properties in Key Biscayne, Ft. Lauderdale, Coconut Grove, and Philadelphia.  He has extensive experience in hotel management and has over 35 years of experience in the field of finance and accounting.  Tom is a Certified Public Accountant who has served as Director of Accounting & Reporting, Controller and CFO for several large companies that include Heathinfusion, Dryclean USA, and Jartran.  He attended St. Joseph's College, Renssalaer on a football scholarship and majored in accounting and minored in social studies education.    A great supporter of Columbus, he was a member of the Columbus Alumni Board of Directors from  1988 - 1999, serving as President in 1992  and 1993. 
  • Daniel Brea '95

    A Vice President and Portfolio Officer at BNY Mellon Wealth Management where he works directly with clients to ensure that their overall investment and wealth management objectives are met.  This includes establishing investment objectives, implementation of an investment strategy, and ongoing monitoring of strategy to ensure it remains within the client’s overall goals.  He has built his career of working directly with high net worth clients at BNY Mellon over the past 15 years.    Danny holds an undergraduate degree with a dual major in International Finance and Marketing from the University of Miami. While at BNY Mellon, he earned his MBA from the University of Miami with a specialization in Personal Financial Planning.  He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM.  He is a voting member of BNY Mellon Wealth Management’s Southeast Trust Administrative Committee and the Florida Account Review Committee. Danny was recognized in Poder Hispanic Magazine in their “20 Under 40 Latinos Going Places” list in June of 2013. 
  • Tom Byrne '77

    Served as president and shareholder of Esslinger-Wooten-Maxwell Realtors’ Commercial Division from 1998 - 2004 and is a native of Miami.  Esslinger-Wooten-Maxwell Realtors was sold in 2003 to HomeServices of America, a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway – a Warren Buffet holding company.  Professionally, Tom is a licensed Florida attorney, with a Juris Doctorate from the University of Miami; has a Masters in Finance from Florida International University and a degree in Economics and Real Estate from Florida State University.Tom and has served on the boards of numerous professional organizations including:  The Realtor Association of Greater Miami and the Beaches, The Florida Association of Realtors, The National Associations of Realtors, The Federal Housing Committee, and The Real Property Section of the Florida Bar. He is a past Director for Habitat for Humanity and for the Jerome Baine Educational Foundation. He has served as an adjunct professor at Florida International University and is the past President of the 1700 member Commercial Alliance of Greater Miami and the Beaches. He is presently an active commercial real estate broker and investor.
  • Roger C. Cuevas '62

    Has fulfilled many challenging roles in his career in education within Miami-Dade Public Schools, to include:  Superintendent, Deputy Superintendent for District Office Operations, Associate Superintendent of the Bureau of Community Service and Career Preparation, Assistant Superintendent for Project Students at Risk and the Office of Vocational, Adult, Career, and Community Education, School Principal, and many others.   As Superintendent he was responsible for America’s 4th largest school district, with more than 364,000 K–12 students, nearly 200,000 adult students, 326 schools, more than 49,600 full and part-time employees, and a $4.2 billion annual budget.  He holds a Master of Science in Curriculum from the University of Northern Colorado, a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education from Florida Atlantic University, and an Associate of Arts from Miami Dade Community College.   He is President of the Miami Dade Retired Educators Association and Chairman Elect of the Miami Dade County Fair & Exposition.
  • Sr. Margaret Fagan

    Currently serves as the Principal of Epiphany Catholic School in Miami, a position she has held since 2004.  As Principal, she is involved in the daily operations of Prekindergarten through 8th Grade including curriculum development, scheduling, and discipline. She collaborates with Parish and Religious Education offices to promote and engage faculty and students in faith development, works with parents in the appropriate placement of students with different learning needs and has been heavily involved in the development of Epiphany’s new Junior High School building.  Prior to working at Epiphany, Sr. Margaret was the Principal of Incarnation School in the Diocese of Trenton, NJ and a  middle school teacher in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Schools.  She holds an M.A. in Education with concentration in Administration & Supervision from Seton Hall University and a M.A. in Moral Theology from The Philadelphia Theological Seminary of Saint Charles Borromeo.  Her affiliations include The National Catholic Education Association, The Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development, The National Association of Elementary School Principals, The National Association for the Education of Young Children, The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and The Independent Schools of South Florida.
  • Jose Mas '89

    Jose R. Mas, 46, is Chief Executive Officer of MasTec, Inc., one of the largest and most diversified infrastructure services providers in North America.  During Mr. Mas’ tenure as CEO revenue has grown from $930 million in 2007 to over $5.0 billion in 2016 and EBITDA in the same period has gone from $57 to almost $450 million. Today, MasTec has more than 20,000 team members serving multiple industries throughout 375 locations in the U.S., Mexico and Canada. Additionally, MasTec has consistently been ranked among the top specialty contractors by Engineering News-Record for the last 5 years.
     
    Since assuming the Chief Executive position at MasTec, Mr. Mas has completely transformed MasTec from a predominantly telecommunications contractor to the most diversified specialty contractor in North America. Mr. Mas diversified the company by expanding into the growing fields of oil and gas pipeline construction, high voltage electric transmission line construction, power generation, and wireless infrastructure construction. Mr. Mas also expanded its traditional communications business, which now includes both broad-band infrastructure and installation-to-the-home satellite, home automation and security services.  
     
    Jose Mas grew up in the business and over 20 years worked his way from the field to the boardroom.  He is a graduate of the University of Miami where he obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration and a Master of Business Administration. He serves on the Board of the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the United Way of Miami.  He is also an active supporter and coach of various youth basketball teams.
     
    Mr. Mas was awarded the Ernst & Young National Entrepreneur of the year award in 2011, the South Florida Business Journal Ultimate CEO award in 2012 and was also featured in the season finale of the CBS hit show Undercover Boss.  Additionally, he was voted as the #1 engineering and construction CEO for 2014 by Institutional Investor Magazine.
  • John Murray '85

    Has been a practicing attorney in Miami since 1993 and is currently the owner of the Coral Gables based Murray Law Firm, P.A., which focuses on representing individuals and businesses in insurance related matters including insurer bad faith litigation. The primary focus of the firm is upon disability, life, accidental death and dismemberment insurance matters, including employee benefits litigation. Previously he was a partner at Wagar, Murray & Feit P.A. and an Associate Attorney at the Law Offices of Scott R. McNary, P.A. and Ferdie & Gouz. John attended Florida State University College of Law, receiving his Juris Doctor degree in 1992. He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminology (cum laude) from Florida State University in 1989. He is a member of The Dade County Bar Association (was President from 2007-2008), the Cuban American Bar Association, the Coral Gables Bar Association (serves on the Board of Directors), the Miami-Dade Justice Association, the Florida Justice Association, the American Bar Association, and the American Association for Justice (was Insurance Law Section Chair, 2007-2008). He is “AV” rated by Martindale-Hubbell and was chosen as Florida Trend Magazine’s “Legal Elite” in 2005 and 2006.
  • Br. Donnell Neary, F.M.S.

    Has been a member of the Marist Brothers since 1967.  He holds a BA from the University of Scranton (PA), an M.Ed. from Northeastern University, Boston and a Professional Diploma in Administration and Supervision from Manhattan College, (NY).  He has served as a teacher, campus minister, guidance counselor, assistant principal, principal and president at a number of U.S. Marist Schools.  These schools include Marist High School (IL), Our Lady of Lourdes High School (NY), Central Catholic High School (MA), St. Agnes Boys High School (NY), Mount St. Michael Academy (NY) and Marist High School (NJ).  He served as Director of Vocations for the Marist Brothers and also served as Provincial of the former US Province of Poughkeepsie.  Br.Donnell spent 6 years at the Marist Brothers’ General House in Rome, Italy where he was personal secretary to the Superior General of the Institute.  He is currently on the staff at Marist High School in Chicago where he teaches and works in the Admissions Office
  • Br. Kevin O'Neill, F.M.S.

    Has over 55 years of experience in education, having worked as a teacher, coach, administrator, dean, treasurer, principal, and president, among many other roles, at several Marist Brothers Schools.  These schools include Marist High School and Roselle Catholic High School (NJ), St. Helena High School (NY), St. Joseph Academy (TX) and several schools in the Philippines. Br. Kevin has served on the board of directors of Marist High School (NJ) and has worked as the Provincial Treasurer for the Marist Brothers.  He holds a BA in Mathematics from Marist College and a MA in Mathematics from Boston College.
  • Roberto Palenzuela '81

    Has provided legal insight and regulatory guidance to both private and public companies in the healthcare industry for over 20 years.  In his current capacity as General Counsel, Corporate Secretary, and Chief Compliance Officer for Metropolitan Health Networks, Inc., he provides strategic business and legal advice to the company’s board of directors and senior executive management team on all significant operational and regulatory matters of this Medicare oriented health care services company.  These include the oversight of the corporation’s human resources policy and procedure implementation, risk management, and investor relations functions.  His responsibilities also include all due diligence activities for acquisitions, mergers, financing and other transactions involving physician practices, new business opportunities, company compliance with SEC regulations, and all federal and state licensing and qualifications matters.  He successfully coordinated the negotiation, documentation and closing of Humana Inc.’s acquisition of Metropolitan Health Networks, Inc. in a transaction valued at $850M.  Prior to his tenure at Metropolitan, he operated in the capacity of General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Chief Compliance Officer for Continucare Corporation and Founding Director, Corporate Secretary and General Counsel for Community Health Plan of the Rockies, Inc.   Robert is a member of the United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit, United States Court of International Trade, and United States Tax Court, the District of Columbia Bar, and the Florida Bar.  He graduated from the University of Miami School of Law - Juris Doctor, and holds a degree in Business Administration in International Finance, also from the UM. 
  • Jorge Rico

    Jorge Rico is a Co-Founding Partner of MBF Healthcare Partners (“MBF”) and has served as a Managing Partner of the firm since inception. He directs MBF’s development and manages all aspects of MBF’s investment activities.

    Mr. Rico has served as a member of the Board of Directors of Navarro Discount Pharmacies, Nutri-Force Nutrition, Simply Healthcare Holdings, Medical Specialties Distributors and Suncrest Healthcare.  Mr. Rico is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Concordia Health and Palm Medical Centers. He is also Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees at St. Thomas University in Miami, Florida.

    Prior to joining MBF, Mr. Rico was the Chief Operating Officer of Ramsay Health Care, Inc. (NASDAQ: RHCI), a publicly held psychiatric hospital company. Prior to RHCI, Mr. Rico was Executive Vice President of Administration of Ramsay-HMO, Inc. (NYSE: RMO), the second largest publicly held HMO in Florida during the early 1990’s. In 1994.
     
  • Carlos Saladrigas '90

    Is co-founder and President of The Simplex Group, Inc., a safety and compliance management solutions company focusing on the commercial transportation industry.  The company manages approximately 4000 commercial drivers and about 300 commercial fleets and also assists drivers and commercial trucking fleets with state and federal licenses, fuel tax reporting, permits and insurance.  In 2008, The Simplex Group continued to expand by creating the Regis HR Group,a Professional Employer Organization (PEO) that provides a complete suite of HR services to small and mid-sized businesses. Currently, Regis has nearly 7000 worksite employees.  Previously, Carlos worked for ADP TotalSource formerly known as Vincam Human Resources.  Also a PEO, Vincam Human Resources was co-founded by his father and in 1998 was acquired by ADP.  Before leaving ADP TotalSource, Carlos was responsible for Payroll Operations where he managed over 40 employees and over $765,000,000 in payroll revenue. Carlos is currently a Board Member and Vice-Chair of the South Florida After School All Stars, past Member of the Miami Chamber of Commerce Sports Council, and past Division Chair of the United Way Campaign.
  • John Spiegel '67

    Following graduation from Columbus, John attended and graduated from the University of South Florida, and soon after graduating from USF, he joined what was then known as the Dade County Public Safety Department as a police officer.  His police career spanned 13 years, the majority of which he worked as a homicide detective and homicide detective sergeant.  John was selected as the Dade County Police Officer of the Year in 1974.  After serving 10 years with the police department, John began attending law school at the University of Miami while continuing to work full time and enjoying promotions to the ranks of police commander and police lieutenant.  After graduating from the University of Miami Law School, cum laude, John entered the private practice of law as a civil trial attorney.  His career as an attorney continues.
     
    John was also a member of the Columbus Athletic Club Board during the 1980's when his son, Danny (’89) was a student.  While John served on the Board of the Athletic Club (the precursor to the current School Board) he worked on a number of fund-raising projects and served as President of the Athletic Club during the 1987-1988 school year.  While President, the Athletic Club established the first building fund for the school, which over time became the CCHS Development Fund.  The Development Fund has successfully raised substantial sums for the construction of the many new buildings and upgrades to the Columbus campus.
Christopher Columbus High School | 3000 SW 87 Avenue | Miami, FL 33165 | (305) 223-5650
Christopher Columbus High School is a private, Roman Catholic, college-preparatory high school, conducted by the Marist Brothers of the Schools. We aim to make Jesus Christ known and loved, as we prepare young men for higher education and for their continuous challenge of harmonizing faith, culture and life. We foster a family spirit among all who are committed to the success of the school and promote opportunities to work together as a community of learners. 

Columbus is fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and is a member of the National Catholic Educational Association.