about us

TEAM MEMBERS

BRENDA WELLS

Founder & Executive Director

Brenda is the founder and Executive Director of the i-5 Freedom Network (i5FN). Their mission is to engage business and community leaders to fight human trafficking through differentiated training, education, and legislative advocacy. Since beginning their organization two years ago, they have educated over 2000 people, 15 hotels, the Outlet Mall and presented at numerous business and community groups such as the the California Hotel and Lodging Association, Loyola Marymount School of Business and Ethics, San Clemente Rotary, Dana Point Rotary, Shared Hope International, Academy of of Hospitality Industry Attorneys, Kiwanis, and Laura's House to name a few.


Also working in legislative advocacy, the i5FN consults on relevant city and state bills and mandates, collaborating with the City of San Clemente on strengthening ordinances on Illicit Massage Parlors, and participates on Congressman Royce's anti-trafficking advisory council as well as the Human Trafficking Collaborative in San Diego. The i5FN is a training partner with the Orange County Human Trafficking Task Force (OCHTTF), and and has developed a training program tailored to the hospitality industry that is offered in both English and Spanish.

Brenda is also a Corporate Trainer and certified through Dale Carnegie in Sales, Leadership, Presentations, and Communication Skills.


For her work fighting human trafficking in the community, Brenda was awarded Chamber of Commerce 2016 Citizen of the Year and Farmers and Merchants Bank 2017 Compassion Award.

Lessons Learned Along the Way

NEED HELP? TEXT: BeFree (233733)

or call NATIONAL HUMAN TRAFFICKING HOTLINE: 888.3737.888

TODD FORESTER

After meeting with the i-5 Freedom Network, Todd’s eyes have been opened to the atrocities of human trafficking that can occur behind closed doors. As a hotel manager with over 25 years of experience, Todd’s high energy and innovative management style has made him a leader in the industry, and he is committed to bringing awareness and training to businesses across the country in the effort to end human trafficking one community at a time. Todd was born in Long Beach and has lived most of his life in South Orange County. Todd enjoys playing guitar and acting for the stage and film.

President

Inspired by the opportunities i-5 Freedom Network offers for training and empowering in the hospitality industry to combat human trafficking, Jan joined the board as Treasurer. She believes that it is our responsibility to help those in harms way. Matthew 25:40 "And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’”

JAN GALATI

Treasurer

LARRY THOMAS

Larry is a recently retired professional manager after 40 plus years in the consumer products industry. He is focused on building business development efforts that fully align to the organization’s commitment to mission, goals and vision. He believes strongly that the priority in all organizational efforts is tied to building brand, strategies and tactics to insure these essentials are linked and synced for the greatest outcome. Success in driving business can be achieved when full alignment is in place.He has been a servant in support of his church where he has served for 20 plus years in various leadership roles. 

 

Larry has volunteered for many causes to include coaching youth sports, home owner association and various nonprofits to include I 5 Freedom Network and San Clemente Pier Pride.Fighting human trafficking provides Larry the opportunity to blend his business savvy & business drive along with his passion to answer God’s call to help those in need. 

 

Larry holds an Associated Arts Degree from Mount San Antonio College as well Bachelor of Science degree from CSU Fullerton in Communication and Marketing.

Geri Cerkovnik

As a business entrepreneur, Geri has a proven track record of working with organizations of all sizes from Fortune 500 companies such as Nortel and Verizon to developing new strategic markets for startup companies.

Now, as CEO and owner of Dale Carnegie of Orange County, she utilizes Dale Carnegie’s training methods to sharpen professionals and transform companies into successful, profitable and focused organizations.

Geri serves on the following Boards: Girl Scouts of Orange County, Glennwood Foundation / Lighthouse Group, and the i-5 Freedom Network. Geri also serves on the Aliso Viejo Community Association.

ADVISORY BOARD

KIM YIM

Author, Speaker

Kimberly McOwen Yim is the author of Refuse To Do Nothing: Finding Your Power to Abolish Modern Day Slavery and founder of the San Clemente Abolitionists in San Clemente, California. She is the executive director of The SOCO Institute, a charitable arm of The SOCO Group where she has supports and advocates for a variety of organizations such as CURE International, Opportunity International, International Justice Mission and World Relief. With a MA in Christian Leadership from Fuller Theological Seminary Kimberly writes and speaks on issues related to human trafficking

AMI CARPENTER, PhD

Associate Professor

Ami Carpenter, PhD, is an associate professor at the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies at the University of San Diego, and teaches courses in conflict resolution, conflict analysis, and negotiation.
 

Carpenter holds a PhD from George Mason University and, in addition to her classes at the Kroc School, has taught courses on international, community, and organizational conflict prevention and resolution at George Mason University (Arlington, Va.), National Taurida Vernatsky University (Simferopol, Ukraine), and California State University, Dominguez Hills.

She has worked on numerous initiatives as a mediator, facilitator, trainer, and conflict resolution consultant. Carpenter currently advises the U.S. Institute of Peace on its programs on countering violent extremism and applied research on conflict, Interpeace, the San Diego Commission on Gang Prevention and Intervention, and the San Diego County Advisory Council on Human and Child Sex Trafficking.

Her recent publications are on resilience in fragile states and violent conflict in Mexico and Central America, and her research focuses on community resilience to violence and the criminal dimensions of political conflicts. Currently, Carpenter is researching vulnerability and resilience to conflict in Iraqi and Guatemalan communities, the connection between transnational gangs and criminal networks in Central America, and gang involvement in sex trafficking in San Diego County.

 

  • PhD, Conflict Analysis and Resolution, George Mason University

  • MA, Communication Studies, New Mexico State University

  • BA (Honors) Psychology, New Mexico State University

COL STEVE MISKA.

US ARMY (Ret),
National Security Consultant

Steve Miska consults on matters of national security since retiring as a Colonel after 25 years of service in the military. His last assignment was teaching three years as the Army Chair at the Marine Corps University. He has taught at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Previously, he served in the White House as a Director for Iraq on the National Security Council. In 2007, on his second of three combat tours in Iraq, Steve led a team that established an underground railroad for dozens of interpreters from Baghdad to Amman to the United States. He has published numerous articles, most recently on protecting local allies during conflict. He earned top academic honors as a Counterterrorism Fellow at the College of National Security Affairs at National Defense University. He has spoken on Iraq based threats at the Defense Intelligence Agency, RAND, and numerous media outlets and think tanks. He holds degrees from Cornell University, National Defense University and the United States Military Academy at West Point. He is a member of the Pacific Council on International Policy and the Cornell Club of L.A. He leads the First Amendment Voice campaign on behalf of Global Peace Foundation and serves on the advisory board to several other nonprofits including No One Left Behind, IRAP, and the i5 Freedom Network in Southern California.

CHIEF ROBERT RAMSEY

Police Chief,
City of Fontana

Chief Robert Ramsey is a graduate of Beaumont High School and holds an Associates of Science Degree in Administration of Justice from Victor Valley College, a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education from Southern Illinois University, and a Master of Arts Degree in Organizational Leadership from Chapman University.

In November of 1989, Chief Ramsey began his career with the Fontana Police Department. He attended the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department 98th Basic Academy Session where he received the honor of being the top graduate in his class.

Chief Ramsey has held a variety of patrol, supervisory, and command positions, which include; Gang Investigator, Neighborhood Improvement Team Officer, Investigations Detective, Internal Affairs Supervisor, Patrol Sergeant, SWAT Team Leader, SWAT Commander, Administrative Services Lieutenant, Area Commander, Fontana Unified School District Police Chief, Field Services Division Commander, Administrative Services Division Commander, and Special Operations Division Commander.

Chief Ramsey holds many Leadership Certifications which include;
FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia (Class 221), POST Command College (Class 42), Supervisory Leadership Institute (Class 155), POST Role of the Chief.

He is an adjunct college professor, and a published author.

Chief Ramsey’s memberships include; International Association of Chiefs of Police, California Police Chief’s Association, FBI National Academy Associates, National Tactical Officer Association, California Association of Tactical Officers, Boys and Girls Club of Fontana Board Member Past-President, Center for Law Enforcement Ethics.

Chief Ramsey is an avid surfer and runner, and enjoys spending time with his family and friends.

 

THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS

Barefoot Bliss Massage

Dale Carnegie

ERBA

Evolution Hospitality

Holiday Inn, Big Bear

HSMAI (Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association, Int’l)

Kris Winrich

Caroline and Scott McOwen

Larry and Lynda Thomas

My Holistic Chef

Outlets at San Clemente

Pizza Port

Robin Dier

San Clemente Presbyterian Church

Ken Fendrick, Auctioneer

Schonberg Design

The Cellar

Universal Press

NEED HELP? TEXT: BeFree (233733)

or call NATIONAL HUMAN TRAFFICKING HOTLINE: 888.3737.888

i-5 Freedom Network 

T. 929.373-3638 (929 FreeNet) | info@i5freedomnetwork.org

160 Avenida Granada, San Clemente CA 92672

©2018 i5freedomnetwork | PRIVACY POLICY

Website managed by Schonberg Design | https://www.schonbergdesign.com/

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