JPS BOE Appoints Career Development/Community Navigators
The Jamestown Board of Education recently appointed two Career Development/ Community Navigators, Max Martin and Carmen Perez, who are bilingual educators. Martin and Perez will work with the JPS Hispanic/Latino community to assist with college and career opportunities and also foster a strong connection between JPS and the Hispanic/Latino community to help guide students to educational and career success.
“It is essential to build strong relationships between our families and our schools to support student success,” said JPS Superintendent Dr. Kevin Whitaker. “With their proven track records, these two individuals will provide an excellent pathway for building relationships, communication and connections between our community and our schools. I am eager for them to begin their essential work.”
The JPS Career Development/Community Navigators will also work closely with college and high school personnel to increase success of students from all demographics, with particular emphasis on under-served populations including Hispanic/Latino students. They will work with the Hispanic/Latino student population at JPS to create connections with students and parents to assist students in pursuing higher education or career opportunities as well as to serve as liaisons between families, community partners and the schools.
Mr. Martin and Ms. Perez will also promote opportunities at JPS to prospective students, with particular emphasis toward the Hispanic/Latino community and related organizations. They will assist with the development of intercultural community/school partnerships, events hosted at the school and off campus, and work toward the development of a student engagement and leadership organization comprised of both college and JPS students, who will act as mentors and role models for prospective students, as well as to organize and implement college prep and awareness activities and events.
Born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Max Martin is currently the President/CEO of the Hispanic Community Council of Chautauqua County. Mr. Martin is a veteran of the United States Navy, and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information at Tampa College and Masters in Business Administration from Florida Metropolitan University. Max is the former President and CEO of TriniTech, Inc., a multinational computer technology corporation, and is also the founder and CEO of Diabetes Wellness Clinic of America, based in Gilbert, Arizona. While serving in his current leadership role with the Hispanic Community Council, Max is also an instructor and Hispanic Outreach Coordinator at Jamestown Business College. After relocating to Jamestown, New York in 2009, Max was appointed Executive Director of the Eastside Family YMCA. In this role, Max established himself as an advocate and liaison for Hispanic/Latino children and families in the Jamestown community, while serving as a volunteer to numerous community organizations and committees. As a result of his commitment to promoting cultural diversity and strengthening Hispanic/Latino engagement in the Western New York area, Max established the Hispanic Community Council, whose mission is to provide advocacy and support for Hispanic/Latino citizens through coordination of educational, cultural opportunities, and social services to address the essential and changing needs of the families in Jamestown, Dunkirk and surrounding communities.
“I am looking forward to continuing my work to support students and families in the Jamestown schools,” said Mr. Martin. “This is an excellent opportunity to build bridges between schools, families, and our community.”
Carmen Perez has worked for Jamestown Public Schools since 2007. Most recently, she was the Career Development Liaison providing outreach to Hispanic/Latino students and families regarding academic and social needs and a point of contact for JHS students, in consultation with and the request of JHS teachers and staff. Ms. Perez provides support to the JPS English as a New Language department, manages the Spanish JPS social media page and helps as an on-call translator. She is the co-advisor for the JHS Futuros Latinos Club, a PRHYLI Puerto Rican Hispanic Youth Leadership Institute Trainer and a member of the JHS Equity Committee. She also helps JCC Hispanic/Latino students as a point of contact and transitional support. Ms. Perez has worked as a Planning Center and ESL paraprofessional in the Jamestown Schools. She has her Bachelor’s degree in Applied Science majoring in Business Administration/Administration Professional from Jamestown Business College.
“I am very pleased to be one of the Hispanic Navigators for the Jamestown Public School District,” said Ms. Perez. “I’ve worked for JPS for many years and I have met many amazing students and their families, all who loved the communication between the school and home. But as we know more work has to be done, many more Hispanic families and community members need to be reached. This is very important to me because this will help bridge communication between the school district, students, families, and the community. I can not wait to get started!”