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Leadership

 
 
 
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Joseph D. Garrity, Esq.

Director / President 

Founding partner of Garrity Traina, PLLC. He graduated from New York Law School in 1996. Prior to attending New York Law School, Mr. Garrity spent several years working as an engineer in the industrial and construction industries. Before founding Garrity Traina, PLLC, Mr. Garrity enjoyed success litigating complex commercial matters for a large national law firm and several specialized boutique firms.

Throughout his legal career he has coupled analytical engineering skills and legal training to effectively litigate matters involving franchising, intellectual property (patents, copyrights and trademarks), condominiums, construction, and business disputes. Mr. Garrity has developed a heavily concentrated niche representing local, national and international franchisees and franchisors in the complex and heavily regulated world of franchising and intellectual property.

As a seasoned litigator, Mr. Garrity has tried numerous cases throughout the country in both state and federal courts at both the trial and appellate level as lead counsel, taking cases from their inception through multi-million dollar settlements and verdicts. In 2018 Mr. Garrity became a member of Lawyers of Distinction after a review and vetting process of the organizations selection committee.

Mr. Garrity also brings his 20 years of legal experience in the areas of general and complex civil litigation to Garrity Traina, PLLC mediation practice. He uses his battle-tested knowledge to assist parties in the resolution of legal disputes in the areas of: franchising, intellectual property, business, condominiums and construction defects. Mr. Garrity is a Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit Civil Mediator and a Florida Supreme Court Qualified Arbitrator.

Mr. Garrity’s legal experience, his love of the arts, and his commitment to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School have prepared him to lead Shine MDS, Inc., and face the challenges of a community in need of healing. His loving family, including his wife of 25 years Wendy, his daughter Sawyer a junior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and his youngest daughter Reese who will enter the high school next year, provide him with the strength to complete the mission of Shine MSD, Inc.

 
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Miguel Pena

Director / Vice-President   

A Senior Supply Chain Manager for Whirlpool Corporation – a worldwide leader in major home appliances.  Miguel directs the end-to-end supply chain operations for the Latin America North Region with full accountability for Inventory Management, Inbound/Outbound Logistics, Supply Planning, 3PL Warehousing and Distribution, and Customer Service for the Caribbean, Central America, Colombia, and Venezuela markets.

Miguel has over 20 years of supply chain experience enabling sales growth, improving service, reducing inventory while improving availability, shortening lead-times, and cutting costs.  He previously held Supply Chain Management positions at Avery Dennison, Dell, and Hewlett Packard. Miguel earned a BS/MS in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University and an MBA from the University of Michigan.

Miguel’s daughter, Andrea, is a sophomore at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and the Treasurer of the Douglas Drama Club.  Miguel’s youngest daughter, Adriana, is in the 7th grade at Westglades Middle School and is also a member of the Westglades Drama Club.  Together with his wife Betty, Miguel and his family are committed to serving the Stoneman Douglas community and fulfilling the mission of Shine MSD, Inc.

 
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Michael A. Paseltiner

Director / Vice President of Technology 

Michael is the Director of Information Systems for Holy Cross Health Ministries, a member of Trinity Health.Holy Cross Health Ministries comprises Holy Cross Hospital, the Holy Cross Medical Group, and the Holy Cross HealthPlex. Michael is responsible for all aspects of IS management and is charged with operational decision-making to fulfill the mission of the IS department.

Michael has more than 25 years of Information Technology experience and previously held IT Management positions with Siemens, CIGNA, and Catholic Health East. Michael has been with Holy Cross for the past 13 years. He holds a BBA in Computer Information Systems from Florida Atlantic University and an MBA from the New York Institute of Technology.

Michael is a Distinguished Alumnus of the Florida Atlantic University Information Technology & Operations Management (ITOM) advisory board. In addition, Michael served on the Broward College Advisory Board for the Information Systems curriculum.

Michael’s daughter, Ashley, is a junior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and an officer in the Douglas Drama Thespian chapter. Michael’s wife Erika, and his youngest daughter Maya, provide him the inspiration to help our community heal through the mission of Shine MSD, Inc.

 
 
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Lonny Anger

Director/VP Media Relations

President of Merrick Industrial Management Corporation, a General Contracting company that specializes in the Hospital and Healthcare Vertical. Lonny oversees all aspects of construction operations: accounting, finance, business development, HR, legal, operations, and marketing while driving excellence. As a State of Florida Licensed General Contractor, he drives an astute construction acumen to oversee interior renovations, facility maintenance, and property management.

Lonny has a Bachelor of Arts in Communication, and minored in Advertising and Public Relations at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo. In addition to being a Shine MSD board member, he sits on the Board of Directors of the Scleroderma Foundation of Southeast Florida, and previously for the Florida Association of Broadcasters and Dolphins Cancer Challenge.

When Lonny is not working to make a positive impact in his community, he hangs out at home with his wife, dogs, and 3 children including his daughter who is a freshman in the drama department at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

 
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Neil D. Bass, CPA

Director / Treasurer 

Neil also founded the Bass Tax Group (formerly known as SmarTax) in 2006. Bass Tax Group provides a full range of tax compliance, tax consulting and tax accounting services. Neil’s tax background helped springboard the concept of Bass Tax Group, which specializes in accounting for income taxes, corporate tax planning and strategy, international tax matters, acquisitions and divestures, and tax examination representation. Neil’s 25+ years of tax experience helped Bass Tax Group grow from a small practice to six professionals, serving all of the tax needs for companies throughout the U.S.

Before founding the Bass Tax Group, Neil was with KPMG, a Big Four accounting firm, primarily working out of their New York City and New Jersey offices. Prior to that, he worked in the banking industry and with a regional accounting firm.

Neil earned his Bachelor of Science in Accounting and Masters in Taxation from Rutgers University in New Jersey. He is also a Certified Public Accountant.

Neil’s daughter, Jessica, is a junior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and an active member in the Drama Club. Together with his wife, Leslie, and son, Adam, Neil and his family are passionate about serving the community, especially as the families come together and heal from the horrific tragedy of February 14, 2018.

 
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Wendy Simon-Garrity

Director / Co-Secretary

Graduate of Boston University in 1989 where she received her BA in Exercise Science Education. She also earned her teaching certificate which she holds to this day. After leaving college Ms. Simon-Garrity enjoyed a career in the Hospitality and Tourism Industry where she worked in high level corporate sales in San Francisco, Las Vegas, and New York City. She was recognized as a top sales person of the year by a national hotel chain.

Ms. Simon-Garrity was a touring professional golfer for several years before leaving the tour after becoming a mother to two loving daughters, Sawyer and Reese. Since that time, Ms. Simon-Garrity has balanced the demands of parenthood with the management of her husband’s law practice Garrity Law Group, P.A. She is responsible for the back-office management of the law practice that is part of the professional association of Garrity Traina, PLLC. Her older daughter Sawyer, the co-writer of Shine, is a junior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Reese will enter Douglas as a 9th grader next year.

Ms. Simon-Garrity brings her experience in education, her ability as a salesperson, her determination as a professional athlete, her management skills running an active law practice, and her love of her two daughters to Shine MSD, Inc.

 
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Beatriz Alvarez-Pena

Director / co-secretary of Shine MSD, Inc.

A pharmacist for over 20 years; Beatriz has worked for Walgreens Pharmacy for the last 17 years. She graduated with a BS from Purdue University College of Pharmacy.

She has been a parent volunteer for her daughters’ schools in Parkland, Florida. Beatriz has served as Treasurer for the Westglades Middle School Orchestra and Choir Booster Club, co-leader for Girl Scout Troops, and volunteer teacher for Faith Formation Classes at Mary Help of Christians Catholic Church in Parkland.

Beatriz has two daughters, the oldest, Andrea is a sophomore at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School. Andrea is the treasurer for the Drama Club. Her youngest daughter Adriana, is a seventh grader at Westglades Middle School and is also involved in the Drama Club at WMS.  

Beatriz will bring to the foundation her diverse experience in healthcare and community service, along with her acknowledgement of the healing properties of art and music. She has seen first-hand how the arts and music have helped her children heal from this tragedy and is committed to make sure the foundation provides this help for as many families as possible. Both Beatriz and her husband, Miguel, are committed to serving the Marjorie Stoneman community and beyond, as well as fulfilling the mission of Shine MSD, Inc.

 
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Brittani Kagan

A proud graduate of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School class of 2007 who dedicated her extracurricular time to the drama department. She's passionate about Shine MSD's mission and is committed to being a dedicated mentor to the students and an advisor on creative direction as it relates to branding, content creation, and arts programs.

Currently, she is the Head of Talent at Portal A, an award-winning digital studio that develops, produces, and distributes original and branded entertainment for a new generation.

Kagan oversees and is responsible for managing talent relations, deal-making, and strategy across Portal A’s branded campaigns and original series. Kagan has over 5 years of experience working in talent management and development with companies such as Thunder Road Pictures and APA Talent Agency. Additionally, Kagan spent time as a freelance producer, writer, and director for brands and media companies including Budweiser, Quilted Northern, Coppertone, and Lighthearted Entertainment.

Portal A is independent, with a team of 50 based in its San Francisco and Los Angeles offices. Portal A works with top global brands like YouTube, Lenovo, Google, Clorox, P&G, Amazon, Warner Bros., and Universal Pictures and develops original entertainment for digital and linear platforms with partners such as Disney, Hearst, and YouTube. Portal A’s work has been seen over one billion times and has been recognized by nearly every major industry award.

Kagan currently resides in Los Angeles. She is a Kappa Kappa Gamma and proud alumna with Distinction of the University of Michigan.