Vince Yanez

Board member: 2017 - Present

Vince Yanez is Senior Vice President, Arizona Community Engagement.  In this role, Mr. Yanez works with Helios' staff to engage the community and stakeholders, improve academic preparedness and foster college-going and completing cultures for Arizona students, especially those in high poverty, Latino communities. 

Prior to joining Helios, Mr. Yanez was Executive Director for Education & Public Policy at the Arizona Community Foundation (ACF).  He oversaw all strategic education grantmaking as well as public policy initiatives.  Prior to ACF, Mr. Yanez was the executive director for the Arizona State Board of Education for nine years.  In that role, he was the chief advocate and policy advisor for issues impacting Arizona’s K-12 public education system.

Mr. Yanez holds a bachelor’s degree in Government and Spanish from the University of Notre Dame and a master’s degree in Social Work from Arizona State University.


Mary Eden

Board member: 2017 - Present

​​Mary Eden most recently served as the Regional Healthcare Administrator for the Jesuit California Province, in Los Gatos, California. She provided leadership in the development of community efforts directed toward improving the health of the California Province. Prior to that she was a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator in Tucson, Arizona and the Founding CEO of the Gathering Place, a drop-in center for persons with HIV/AIDS in Los Angeles. 


Mary earned a Bachelor of Arts in Gerontology from Mount St. Mary's University in Los Angeles, California and is a Licensed Practical Nurse. 


Janita Gordon

Board President 2017

Board Member: 2016- Present

Janita has over thirty years of education, public policy and philanthropy experience in foundations, nonprofit and academic institutions.  Janita currently serves as the Senior Associate for Campaigns and Fund Development at Girl Scouts, where she is the leading Arizona’s first Leadership Campaign for Girls. A Chicago native, Janita and her family relocated to Phoenix over fifteen years ago to assist with ASU’s Great Community Campaign. Janita served as the Vice President/Senior Director of Development and Marketing for the Ira Fulton School of Engineering. Her expertise in philanthropy evolved when she was appointed to lead Arizona’s Early Education Fund, a public/private partnership a collaborative effort between Arizona Community Foundation and the State School Readiness Board/office of Governor Janet Napolitano. Following her passion to increase the college opportunity of first generation students, Janita also served as the Executive Director of the National Minority Golf Scholarship Association and continues to assist with local efforts to support high school and college students reach their full potential. She serves on the board of Florence Crittenden and is a licensed missionary within the Arizona Jurisdiction for the Churches of God in Christ.

Paul Lopez

Board member: 2017 - Present

​Over the past twenty-six years, Paul Lopez has lived, breathed and existed at the intersection of private and public sectors. As the Founder and President of The Endeavor Agency, a public affairs and public relations agency, Mr. Lopez has intimate knowledge of Arizona’s business, legislative and political climates to advocate and advance his clients’ strategic objectives. Mr. Lopez has an extensive career of advising Fortune 500 companies and advancing their business objectives. As the Founder and the President of The Endeavor Agency, Mr. Lopez has served in a senior advisory capacity to four Phoenix mayors.

Continuously active in the community, Mr. Lopez contributes his time to a broad range of charitable causes. He has served in leadership roles for organizations as diverse as Valley Leadership Institute, Phoenix Children’s Hospital, the Herberger Theater, the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, YMCA, the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Arizona State Boxing Commission, among many others. A proud fourth-generation Arizonan, Mr. Lopez lives in Phoenix, with his wife of 12 years, Hilda, and their daughter, Ava Giselle.

Judy Schumacher

Board Member: 2016- Present

Ms. Judy Schumacher is an award-winning Fortune 500 executive in the fields of communications, public relations, advertising and board governance.  A longtime Arizona resident, she has worked for some of the state’s most prestigious firms. Currently, she is Vice President of Corporate Communications & Governing Board Services for CopperPoint Insurance Companies, Arizona’s largest workers’ compensation insurance carrier.  She is responsible for internal and external communications, advertising and community relations as well as governing services for the company’s 6-member Board of Directors.

Most recently, Ms. Schumacher was Vice President of Marketing for Main Street Restaurant Group, a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange.  She was responsible for the marketing, advertising and communications programs associated with 57 T.G.I. Friday’s restaurants and 3 proprietary brands located across the U.S. Before joining Main Street, Ms. Schumacher owned and operated a full-service communications consulting company.  The firm provided services in the areas of marketing and advertising, public relations, financial communications, consumer and issues research, media relations, employee communications, mock jury focus group analysis.

Prior to Schumacher Communications, Inc., Ms. Schumacher held the position of Director of Corporate Communications for Arizona Public Service Company.  As such, she was responsible for companywide communications, managing a staff of 50 and an annual budget of $13 million.  Her leadership in issues management, consumer brand repositioning and employee relations garnered such awards as a First Place Telly Award for her deregulation television ad campaign and a Top Ten Award from Andersen Consulting for the best website and intra-net site in the utility industry.

Photo Credit: Jerry Harper Creative

Joyce Medina Harper - Executive Director    Email

Joyce has over 16 years of experience in the non-profit, education and philanthropic sectors. She graduated from Arizona State University with a degree in Child Development, and went on to earn a Master's Degree from Baruch College in Public Administration. Most recently, Joyce was the Director of Scholarships and Associate Executive Director of Education at the Arizona Community Foundation. 


Joyce serves on the Board of Directors for Valley Leadership, Chairs the Latina Giving Circle, is a member of the Estrella Mountain Community College President's Advisory Council, and serves in the philanthropy seat for the First Things First Phoenix South Regional Council. Among her accomplishments, Joyce was selected as a National Urban Fellow, Class of 2005; Valley Leadership Class 32; Phoenix Business Journal 40 Under 40 Class of 2013; Hispanic 40 Under 40 Class of 2012; National Hispana Leadership Institute ALL-IN - 2010; and a Pahara Next Gen Fellow. 

Staff

James Walsh

Board member: 1985 - Present

James P. Walsh has practiced law in Arizona since 1970.  A graduate of the University of Chicago School of Law, Walsh served as Pinal County Attorney from 2007 to 2012.  Before becoming the Pinal County Attorney, he served in the Arizona Attorney General's Office as the Chief Deputy and as Special Counsel for Southern Arizona.  Jim has served the people of Arizona as a State Senator (1975-76) and has been active in community and professional organizations, including the Arizona Humanities Council, Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest, and the Oracle Land Trust.  He currently serves on the University of Arizona Poetry Center Development Committee and is a member of the Prescott College Board of Trustees.

Board of Directors