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 24 items.

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

    Is currently the Senior Vice President/Commercial Lending at Capital Bank. Prior to joining Capital Bank, Doug served in various capacities in the finance sector including as the President of Nason Consulting, Executive Vice President of Bank Services at BankUnited, 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 Columbus Board of Directors for nine years, three years as an Executive Committee Member, and has been the Chairman for the past two school years. He has also served on the Columbus Golf Committee since 1990. Doug previously served on the St. Thomas University Advisory Board, the Florida Banker Association Board as their PAC Committee Chairman and on their Government Relations Committee. Doug was also the president of the Miami Chapter of the American Heart Association and was honored as the Vizcayans Star of Millennium for Outstanding Community Service. 
  • 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 $1,000,000 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.
  • Br. Herbert Baker, F.M.S.

    Br. Herb was born in New York and entered the Marist Brothers formation program in 1962. He first taught at St. Helena School in New York from 1967 – 1972 and then he taught and
    coached at Pace High School in Miami from 1972 – 1980. He also taught and was the head baseball coach for two years (1980 – 1982) at Biscayne College, now St. Thomas University.

    For 35 years (1982 – 2017) Br. Herb has served Christopher Columbus High School. He taught AP and Honors American History for 33 years and was the head baseball coach from 1982 – 1996. During his tenure as coach, Br. Herb and his team won many district, GMAC, sectional, and regional championships.

    In 1991 he became the school’s Athletic Trainer, a position he holds to this day. Under his leadership, Br. Herb has developed an outstanding Training and Sports Medicine Facility where he and his team manage the overall health and wellness of Columbus’ student-athletes. His exceptional work has led to Columbus being named a “Safe Sports School 1st Team” by the National Athletic Trainers’ Association. Recently, he spearheaded an effort in collaboration with Nicholas Children’s Hospital and the U.M. School of Nursing & Health Studies to provide mandatory comprehensive examinations, including EKGs, to all student-athletes (the first high school program of its kind in Miami-Dade County).

    In addition to all his responsibilities at Columbus, Br. Herb still found time to be the Director of the Columbus Marist Brothers Community for 18 years.
  • James Bernhardt

    Graduated from University of Florida’s School of Business in 1964 where Jim was also a starting linebacker and defensive captain his senior year. From 1965-2010, Jim ran a State Farm franchise. This private business ownership allowed for time to pursue a passion for coaching. Throughout the 1980’s and 90’s he coached football, basketball and baseball at Boys and Girls Clubs, Coral Gables and South Miami Khoury leagues and Epiphany Elementary. Currently, with the assistance of his daughter, Jill, manages Bernhardt Property Management.  

    In the 1990’s, Columbus was going to stop the 9th grade baseball program. Jim attained permission from the school to continue the program. He coached and ran program for one year and it is still running strong today. During this time, Br Angelo, Columbus Principal, stated the school’s administrative structure will be changing. Part of this change was to incorporate a board of directors. In 1998, Br Angelo asked Jim to help start the board and to serve as chair of the new executive board which he did for the first three years.  Served as past chair of the Boys and Girls Club Executive Board of Miami-dade. April 24th 1993,  admitted as an affiliated member of the Marist Brothers of the Province of Esopus.
  • 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.
  • Dr. Joseph Fernandez ‘80

    Dr. Joe Fernandez graduated from Tulane University School of Medicine and completed a fellowship in Sports Medicine, Arthroscopic and Reconstructive Surgery at the American Sports Medicine Institute with Lawrence Lemak, M.D, James Andrew, M.D., and William Clancy, M.D. Dr. Fernandez is a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the American College of Surgeons, and a member of the Arthroscopy Association of North America.

    He has been in private practice for over 15 years and is the Chairman of the Department of Orthopeadics for Baptist Hospital of Miami. Dr. Fernandez is a sports medicine specialist who specializes in sport related injuries and arthroscopic surgery. He lectures all over the world on topics related to sports injuries of the knees and shoulders. He has been a tournament physician for the Key Biscayne Lipton, NASDAQ, and Sony Erickson since 1995. He has been a master instructor in shoulder surgery for the Arthroscopy Association of North America, and routinely treats world class professional, college and high school athletes.
  • Br. Daniel J. Grogan, F.M.S.

  • Carlos Luis ‘85

    Carlos is the president of Carlos Luis State Farm Insurance Agency.

    Carlos began his career with State Farm Insurance in 1990 as a fire claims adjuster. In 1999 he was selected to be a State Farm Agent. The Carlos Luis State Farm Insurance Agency opened its doors in March of 2000. In his first year as an agent, he was ranked number one in the country for all new agents. In 2004 & 2006 he was ranked as the top agent out of 18,000 agents in the US for both life policy sales and raw new autos. He continues to rank in the top 1 percent of State Farm Agents.

    Carlos has been very involved with Christopher Columbus for many years. He has served 6 years in the Alumni Committee, the last three years (2013-2016) serving as President. In 2016 Carlos was inducted into the Christopher Columbus Hall of Fame. Carlos has also served in the Board of Rebuilding Together and has also been very involved in the Boys & Girls Club.
    Carlos played football, basketball and track while at Christopher Columbus. He later went on to play football at Joliet Junior College and Western Illinois University. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Management from Western Illinois.

    Carlos has been married to wife Patricia, a CPA, for twenty two years. He has two sons, Carlos Jr. and Franco Luis. Carlos Jr. is a graduate of Columbus, class of 2016, was a MAS Scholar and is currently at the University of Miami, Franco is currently a senior at Columbus.
  • 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.
  • 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.
     
  • Annie Seiglie

    A product of Catholic education, Annie Seiglie has over 25 years of educational experience. She and her husband David 85’, have three children and serve together in parish and Archdiocesan ministries. Inspired by the model of her own parent’s ministry, she has facilitated for families and youth in the community in various capacities, including serving as the Archdiocesan Chairperson for the Catholic Committee on Scouting. Seiglie earned her Educational Specialist degree from Nova University and has done coursework in Barry University in Pastoral Ministry for Hispanics. She holds a Master of Science degree in Computer Applications in Education and a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education. Her educational career began in the public school system. She began teaching in the Archdiocese in 2004, and in 2008 became assistant principal of St. John Neumann School in Miami. Seiglie says her strength is in curriculum design and instruction, and she puts Christ as the center of her educational philosophy. "His model of servant leadership guides my ministry," she said. "I believe my role is to foster a community built on trust and communication while promoting Catholic faith formation, academic excellence, ethical decision-making, and Christian leadership." Currently, she serves as the Principal at Saint Timothy Catholic Parish School.
  • 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 AdvancEd and a member of the National Catholic Educational Association.