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Our Mentors

Computer Mentors is a place where passion meets empowerment.

Our mentors are credible, business professionals from the technology sector who believe in the growth of our students. Our programs are designed to ensure each of our students’ receive personalized attention from their mentor. This specialized attention ensures students are given the opportunity to develop superior technology skills that are needed to guide them into successful IT careers. Guiding students through each step of the program, our mentors enable students to find courage in their personal abilities. With the help from our mentors there is no limit to success.

The Founder

Founder & Executive Director
Ralph Smith

Ralph_SmithRalph Smith is the most experienced computer professional on staff, with a passion for aiding underprivileged youth.  He is the founder and current Executive Director of Computer Mentors Group (CMG). CMG was founded in 1997 as a volunteer project by Ralph.  CMG started with five teenagers and the idea of providing computers for the homes as a reward for learning.  The vision was to form a volunteer network of computer professionals that would mentor minority and “at risk” youth, and point them in the direction of Information Technology (IT) careers.  Ralph originally got the idea of starting a “small computer school for youth” when he volunteered with the Juvenile Justice System in Lansing Michigan when he was 25 years old. Ralph came to Tampa in 1993 and has dedicated himself to this community ever since.  Prior to becoming the full-time director of CMG he held professional computer related positions ranging from computer technician, computer operator, to computer programming, systems analyst, network engineer, and manager. His last fifteen years prior to becoming the full-time director of Computer Mentors Group was with Citibank where he was an Assistant Vice President in the North American Trade Finance Division. Ralph has a wide variety of Information Technology experience.  As an owner of his consulting company R & L Computing Services, Ralph specialized in non-profits and small businesses.  He positioned R & L Computing Services as a one-stop IT company providing technology consulting, web and email hosting, website development, networking, database design and applications, equipment maintenance, and security.

The Mentors

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Computer Mentors Program Director

Nyjel Dukes

Oversees the operation of the majority of Computer Mentors' programs.

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Recruitment and Marketing Manager

Preston Ingraham

Preston handles all the student recruiting, social media, and marketing for Computer Mentors.

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KidsCode Program Manager

Antonio Hopkins

Antonio manages all operations surrounding the KidsCode program.

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Mentor

Denis Thicklin

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Mentor

Ebin Mathew

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Mentor

Kirk Jackson

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Mentor

LiAn DeOrio

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Mentor

Dalia Salih

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Mentor

Joseph Jose

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Programmer

Paul Bagaric

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Administrative Assistant

Lois Jones

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Mentor

Christian Alfano-Nerey

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Mentor

Brianna Yanqui

Board of Directors

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Board Chairperson

Santo Cannone

Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Tampa Bay Wave

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Board Treasurer

Rosanna Inturrisi

Nisi Management Services LLC, President/Consultant

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Board Secretary

Linda Cassaly

Retired form Connectwise

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Board Member

Christy Sacco

Senior Channel Program Manager, Panasonic

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Board Member

DAVID EASON

JPMorgan Chase

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Board Member

Derrick Thomas

Information Security Engineer, AmGen

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Board Member

George McGourty

Partner, Arriba Advisors

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Board Member

Kathy Smith

SVP, Services and Education at ConnectWise

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Board Member

MICHAEL PEDERSEN

Systems Engineer, Systems Branch Intelligence Directorate (CCJ23)

The Honors Board

Arthenia Joyner  Supporter and State Senator | Betty Reed  Former Board Member and State House Member | Bob Buckhorn  Former Board member and Mayor of Tampa | David Omlor  Former CMG Board Chair | Hank Gill  Former CMG Board Chair | Juan Davis  Former CMG Board Chair | Shirley Houston  Former CMG Board Chair | Susanne Gill  Former CMG Board Chair | Machelle Maner  Former CMG Board Chair | Mark LaPlante  Former CMG Board Chair