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Our professionals understand the language and intricacies of government bureaucracy. Every member of our staff has served in senior levels of government in Florida and the Caribbean. This in-depth knowledge of regulatory matters and process are skillsets that we bring to our clients. In addition and just as important, our clients benefit from the 30 years our team members have invested in building professional relationships with the key decision makers throughout government.

 

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Jose Fernandez, President

Mr. Fernandez is a founding partner of Florida Compass Group. He is recognized as one of Florida's leading government regulatory experts. Mr. Fernandez leads the Infrastructure, Public Private Partnerships, and Energy Division where he has been a key advisor in securing $1 billion worth of infrastructure projects in the past 5 years.

Prior to establishing Florida Compass Group, Mr. Fernandez had a distinguished public service career. He was named City Clerk by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer; the very first appointment of Mayor Dyer's administration. Soon after, Mr. Fernandez was also given the additional responsibility of Director of General Administration. He was later selected to serve as the Mayor's Chief of Staff and Senior Advisor to the Mayor for Public Policy and Business Development. In that role, Mr. Fernandez provided senior level guidance to the Mayor on a variety of public policy matters and served as the voice for commerce on the Mayor's Cabinet.

Mr. Fernandez earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Latin American and Caribbean Affairs from Rollins College, a Masters Degree in Public Administration from the University of Central Florida, and is a graduate of the Kennedy School of Government's Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government at Harvard University.

Mr. Fernandez has served on the board of directors of a number of public and private entities including Blue Beetle Energy, Orlando Regional Chamber of Commerce, Rollins College Alumni Association, Fifth Third Bank, and the UCF Foundation. In addition, he has served as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Central Florida teaching Economic Development. He was recognized in 1998 by the Orlando Business Journal as one of the 40 top Central Florida business executives under 40 years of age and in 1999 Orlando Magazine named him one of Central Florida's 20 leaders for the 21st century. The Orlando Business Journal has also listed Mr. Fernandez as one of the most influential persons in Central Florida.

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Iris Coronado, Vice President

Ms. Coronado is a founding partner of Florida Compass Group. She leads our Education Division where she uses her in depth knowledge of educational strategies and school management to assist our clients. Ms. Coronado also oversees the day to day operations of the firm including the management of our team members in the United States and the Caribbean. She holds a Master's Degree in Education from the University of Central Florida and a Bachelor's of Arts degree in International Management from St. Mary's University in Texas. Ms. Coronado has served on several of community boards including the Osceola Center for the Arts as well as a number of advisory groups for Orange County Public Schools.

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Ronald Ambar, General Manager- South America


Mr. Ambar has 35 years of experience in developing complex business transactions between Florida and Brazil. He is the founder of the Brazilian American Chamber of Commerce and has served as its President and Chairman. Mr. Ambar has worked with the Florida Compass Group team since 2008 assisting clients in the following industries: tourism, energy, and medicine.

In addition to the Brazilian Chamber of Commerce, Mr. Ambar also serves on the Board of Directors for Confederacao Naciona do Turismo (Brazilian National Tourism Commission) as well as a Director on BRTV, a television network targeting the growing Brazilian market in the United States. Mr. Ambar is a graduate of the Universidade Gama Filho where he received a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration.

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Raul Gaya, P.E., Advisor- Puerto Rico


Mr. Gaya is an established authority in infrastructure project management in the island of Puerto Rico and abroad. His firm JR Technical and Development has been a part of the engineering community since its founding as Raul Gaya Benejam Engineering in the 1930's.

The group's achievements include key public works such as bridges, highways, the Mercedita Airport in Ponce, Puerto Rico, and building facilities. In the 1980's, Mr. Gaya managed the islands' $300M aqueduct and sewer system rehabilitation initiative. More recently, he has performed feasibility studies and design for several ongoing light rail transportation projects in San Juan.

Mr. Gaya earned his graduate degree in Chemical Engineering from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. In 1999, he was elected to the American Academy of Environmental Engineers. In 2004, he was awarded the French Senate Medal for his efforts to establish commercial ties between France and Puerto Rico. Mr. Gaya has served on the board of directors of the Puerto Rico Chamber of Commerce, the leading business group on the island, where he was Chairman of the Board from 2010-2011.


 

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