BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Hakeem is a speaker and mental health advocate, Hakeem Rahim, founded I Am Acceptance in 2016 to ignite the conversation of mental health and wellness. An alumnus of Harvard University and two masters degrees from Columbia University, Hakeem dedicates his life to educating the community on mental health and wellness as well as sharing his own experiences with mental illnesses to inspire individuals to seek help.
Hakeem has been involved with mental health campaigns with ThriveNYC and has advocated for policy change involving mental health resources before the Energy and Commerce Congressional Committee and Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee. In 2016, he was invited by the Jamaica US Embassy to represent the United States as a mental health ambassador for Mental Health Awareness Day in Jamaica, West Indies.
Board Vice President
Francilia is Founder & CEO of R.F. Wilkins Consultants. Francilia Wilkins, is an enthusiastic business expert, who understands the fundamental and advanced concepts of leveraging businesses. She has more than 10 years of successful multi-industry experience in strategizing, developing integrated marketing, analytical brand development, financial solutions, project expansion, program development, and workforce development. Francilia has worked with a number of the nation’s largest companies, including Pfizer, Metropolitan Life Insurance and Thomson Reuters.
In 2011, she applied her corporate expertise in the development of R.F. Wilkins Consultants, a highly successful consulting firm, dedicated to leveraging and expanding the successes of the nation’s businesses. To date, she has leveraged a multitude of companies, resulting in their acquisition of over $80 million in capital, completion of over 50 unique projects, and development of human capital.
Francilia also serves as Vice Chair of the Pitkin Avenue Business Improvement District, Director of Economic Development for the National Black MBA Association––New York Metro Chapter, and for Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. Queens Alumnae Chapter’s Economic Development Committee. She holds a Bachelors of Science in Finance and a Masters of Business Administration in Marketing from St. John’s University.
Michael is President & CEO of the National Business Coalition on Health (NBCH). Prior to his recent appointment at NBCH, was a Principal at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) for the past 20 years, Michael is a nationally recognized thought leader for business health strategies and health system reform. He has worked with major employers and other stakeholders on sustainable cost reduction, integrated health, wellness and consumerism, retiree health, private health exchanges and health reform. Known for developing and promoting collaborative cross-sector health industry initiatives, Mike participated on the steering board of the World Economic Forum’s “Working towards Wellness” initiative and co-founded the Private Exchange Evaluation Collaborative (PEEC). Prior to joining PwC, Mike served as an executive with diverse roles with Prudential Healthcare for over 17 years.
Michael is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries, serving on the Health Practice Council, and chairs the Medicare Sub-Committee of the American Academy of Actuaries (AAA). He is also widely recognized as a leading national advocate for mental health and well-being and was Past President of the New York City chapter of the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI). Michael has also been an active member of the board of the Northeast Business Group on Health for the past 11 years.
Erica Lee-Benedetto is the President and COO of Marquis Who’s Who. Marquis has been documenting the lives of influential and distinguished individuals for 120 years. The flagship print registry, Who’s Who in America, was published in 1899 and the 2000 Edition sits in the National Millennium Time Capsule buried in Washington, DC. Since the launch of Marquis Biographies Online (MBO) database in 2002, the MBO been a trusted resource for independent research by prestigious academic libraries, such as Harvard, Yale, Cornell, the University of Notre Dame and the University of Tokyo; federal libraries including the Library of Congress and the White House; and corporate libraries, such as The New York Times, American Express, ABC News and Deloitte and Touché. At Marquis, Erica is responsible for driving the overall strategy of the business while improving operational efficiency of the company through software development, product updates, new process initiatives and effective personnel management. Erica has been instrumental in redirecting company’s focus from primarily print directories and an online reference database to providing a suite of personal branding products and services, which benefit its 1.5 million biographical listees. These branding products include Personal Websites, Press Release Writing and Distribution, Video Biographies, Radio Interviews and spotlights in Delta Sky
Magazine and the Wall Street Journal.
Javier Lopez is the co-chair of complex and commercial litigation and currently serves on the firm’s management committee. Javier has particular expertise in advising and representing international clients in matters brought in U.S. federal and state courts. He has represented many high-profile corporations and individuals in contract and business disputes, commercial transactions, and intellectual property matters. He has handled trials and appeals on both the state and federal levels.
Elizabeth has an extensive background in talent and business development within the tech and health industries. A graduate from Pratt Institute, Elizabeth has built her CV while working with Comcast NBCUniversal, FastTwitch Group, The Bloc, and more. The passion for challenging the status quo has led her to found and create three organizations focusing on the intersection of health & wellness and technology. Having been published in Advertising Health, Clios.com, DTC Perspectives, MediaPost, Medicine Avenue, MM&M, PharmaVOICE, PM360, and Prototypr, and Coca-Cola Journey, Elizabeth’s input on innovation is respected nationally. Atop of her integrating creativity and strategy within her professional career, Elizabeth also sits on the board for I Am Quintessential Woman, and I Am Acceptance.
Interim Business Development Consultant
Kevin L. Adams
Kevin L. Adams is a Managing Director and Financial Advisor with Bernstein Private Wealth Management in the firm’s New York office. He provides comprehensive investment planning services to high net worth individuals, business owners, family offices and nonprofit organizations. Kevin is also a leader in Bernstein’s Athlete and Entertainer Practice, working to develop and maintain investment strategies suited to clients’ long-term spending needs, risk tolerance and legacy goals.
Formerly, Kevin was a Managing Director in Equity Trading at Bernstein, leading the Energy and Industrials sector. Prior to his joining Bernstein, he was a Managing Director at Goldman Sachs, where he was Co-Head of Relative Value Trading focused primarily, Media, and Telecom Trading, as well as the Head of the Consumer/Healthcare sector. Kevin has a BS in Finance from Florida State University, where he was also a scholarship football player. He also earned an MBA in Finance from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Kevin is an Advisory Board Member of the Lee Thompson Young Foundation; a member of the Association for Corporate Growth; the Institutional Partnership Committee Chair for the New York Chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants Inc.; a member of the Virginia Club of New York; and a member of Florida State University’s Varsity Club.