Tallahassee, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis announced the appointment of Lori Fahey, Edmund Finder, James “Chip” Byers, Alexis Dempsey, Douglas Hilliard and Todd Jennings to the Florida Endowment Foundation for Vocational Rehabilitation Board of Directors.

Lori Fahey

Fahey, of Tallahassee, is President and CEO of The Family Café, a non-profit focused on connecting Floridians with unique abilities and their families with information, training and resources. As a mother of a child with special needs, she also volunteers her time with the Family Run Executive Director’s Leadership Association and the National Federation of Families for Children’s Mental Health. Fahey earned her bachelor’s degree in social work and education from Florida State University.

Edmund Finder

Finder, of Jupiter is a retired money manager with Axiom Capital and Starfinder Financial. Previously, he was a Senior Vice President with Smith Barney. As the father of a son with autism, Finder is passionate about connecting individuals with unique abilities with employment opportunities, having been recognized by the Autism Foundation of New York for this work. He received his degree from Boston University.

James “Chip” Byers

Byers, of Orlando, is the Owner of Rita’s Italian Ice and Frozen Custard in Lake Buena Vista, a business he started almost three years ago. Previously, he was a cast member in merchandise and dining at Walt Disney World Resort. As an autistic man himself, Chip has worked hard to provide job training for individuals with unique abilities and maintains a majority autistic workforce at his business. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Pace University.

Alexis Dempsey

Dempsey, of Wesley Chapel, is the Director of National Accounts at Saddlebrook Resort, a company with a commitment to employing individuals with unique abilities. She volunteers her time with the Rotary Club of Wesley Chapel, Junior League of Tampa and Advent Health Wesley Chapel. Dempsey earned her bachelor’s degree in hospitality management from the University of Central Florida and her master of business administration from Saint Leo University.

Douglas Hilliard

Hilliard, or Orlando, is the Chief Financial Officer of AdventHealth, a company he has been with since 1996. His previous positions with AdventHealth include Financial Analyst and Senior Finance Officer. Hilliard is active in his community, volunteering his time with the Children and Youth Family Services Board of Orange County. He earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Southern Adventist University.

Todd Jennings

Jennings, of Belleair, is a Partner and Attorney with Macfarlane, Ferguson and McMullen, P.A. Previously, he was an Associate and Attorney with Galloway Johnson. A father of a child with autism, Jennings has volunteered his time with the Suncoast Tiger Bay Club, Rotary Club of Clearwater, University of Tampa Board of Counselors and the LiFT Academy Development Council. He is a United States Navy veteran who received his bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering from the University of Tennessee and his juris doctor from the University of Florida.



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