Milam is a corporate attorney who represents clients including start-ups, Fortune 500 companies, venture capital firms, and other private and public equity investors in private financing transactions, private and public securities offerings, mergers and acquisitions, management buyouts, debt financing, joint ventures and strategic alliances, and other business transactional matters. Over the last 10 years, he has developed a particular emphasis on representing emerging companies and investors in private financing transactions—guiding them throughout the entire financing process, from startup to exit. Milam also advises public and private companies on issues related to organization, capital structure, stock incentives, governance, litigation risk management, securities law compliance, and disclosure. He has led transactions across a variety of industries, including technology, life sciences, energy, and financial services. Milam is the Managing Partner of Vinson & Elkins' Austin office.
Ryan Atlas joined Vista Equity Partners in 2012. Mr. Atlas currently sits on the boards of Allocate, Granicus, LogicMonitor, Tomia and Wrike. He was actively involved in the firm’s investments in Autotask, Bullhorn, Main Street Hub, Naviga, Relias Learning and Return Path. Prior to joining Vista, Mr. Atlas worked at JMI Equity, a growth equity firm with over $4 billion under management. While at JMI, Mr. Atlas focused on growth and buyout investments of software and technology-enabled businesses. Before his time with JMI, Mr. Atlas worked at McKinsey & Company, where he advised clients on both strategy and operations in a variety of industries including private equity, technology, and energy. In addition to his work at Vista, he also serves as Treasurer and Vice Chairman-Elect at Friends of the Children Austin and a board member of Austin PBS-KLRU.
Brian Loring is a Vice President at Vista Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing in software, data, and technology companies. Before joining Vista in 2011, Brian worked at Riverside Resources, an Austin-based commercial real estate investment and development firm. Brian received his B.A. and J.D. from Emory University and his M.B.A. from The University of Texas – McCombs School of Business. In addition to Friends of the Children, Brian and his wife Maile are actively involved in other philanthropic organizations, including Hill Country Conservancy, Waller Creek Conservancy, and the ALS Association.
Jessica Leggett has 20 years of experience in private equity and venture investing, managing institutional capital and scaling organizations. She is a Principal at MSD Capital, L.P. Prior to joining MSD she was the Founder and CEO of Seven + Gold, a mission-driven investment platform focusing on angel and seed-stage high growth investment opportunities across industries. Prior to forming Seven + Gold in 2014, Jessica was a founding partner and the CFO of Vantage Properties, LLC, a New York City based real estate private equity firm with over $2 billion of assets under management. She led the sourcing, underwriting, due diligence, structuring, debt and equity financing and closing of new investments. She was also responsible for the management of each of the portfolio investments as well as the wholly owned affiliated real estate operating companies. Prior to joining Vantage, Ms. Leggett worked in similar capacities with The Olnick Organization, a diversified single-family office, and with Lehman Brothers. At Lehman, she worked in the Private Equity Group as a member of the acquisitions team for the $1.6 billion real estate private equity fund and in the Global Investment Banking Group. Jessica currently serves on the board of Mission Asset Fund, a national, non-profit financial technology organization focused on economic empowerment and the creator of Lending Circles. She is also involved with a number of additional non-profit organizations including the Tipping Point Community, St. Paul’s Foundation, Team Rubicon and the Sierra Club Outdoors Lab. She previously served as the Treasurer for the Board of Trustees for Democracy Prep Charter School, located in Harlem, New York for 7 years. Ms. Leggett graduated from the Business Honors Program at The University of Texas at Austin with a B.B.A. in Finance. As a proud Texan, she recently relocated to Austin with her husband and two children after living in New York City and most recently San Francisco.
Director, Diversity and Inclusion, Vista Equity Partners
Prior to joining Vista, Ms. Ali worked at Zendesk as Head of Diversity and Inclusion, where she was responsible for building inclusive and equitable business practices across 15 international offices. Before her time with Zendesk, Ms. Ali was Vice President and Chief of Staff for Bank of America’s Global Head of Campus Recruiting and Junior Talent Management, where she established operational, business management and budgetary procedures for a global team. Prior to Bank of America, Ms. Ali was a Manager of Diversity Analytics at NBCUniversal, where she focused on developing company-wide and business unit specific diversity and inclusion strategies by leveraging workforce analytics and industry trends. Ms. Ali began her career at Morgan Stanley and is a graduate of Spelman College.
Rachel Arnold is a Managing Director at Vista Equity Partners, the leading private equity investment firm focused on enterprise software and technology. Professionally, she works with CEOs and senior management teams of market-leading organizations to help them accelerate growth and develop more efficient operations.
Before joining Vista Equity Partners in 2012, Rachel held executive positions at four Vista companies. Her roles included interim CEO for Social Solutions, Senior Vice President of Engineering, Product Management and Marketing at Mitratech, Vice President of Product Management and Strategy at MicroEdge, and running Business Development and Channel Programs at SRC Software. Outside of her Vista tenure, Rachel served as Strategy Director at Interbrand and as an Equity Research Associate covering enterprise software at Pacific Crest.
Rachel is passionate about giving back to her community. In 2017, she co-founded the Austin chapter of Friends of the Children, a national nonprofit organization focused on enabling high-risk children and breaking the cycle of generational poverty. Rachel also serves on the National Board for Friends of the Children, as well as serving as a Trustee for The Contemporary Austin.
Amy Baer is Director of the Baer Family Foundation, which she founded with her husband Joshua Baer to support the Austin community with a focus on disadvantaged children and inclusive entrepreneurship. She retired from Dell in 2007 where she served in a variety of roles including Manager of Enterprise Strategy and Communications for Asia-Pacific/Japan located in Singapore, and as an advocate for the expansive partnership between Dell and Microsoft.
Amy resides in Austin, Texas, with her husband Joshua and their three children. You can reach her on Twitter @AmyBaer.
Clinical Professor, McCombs School of Business, The University of Texas at Austin
Jade S. DeKinder is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Marketing at The University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business. Dr. DeKinder received her Bachelor’s degree in Economics with highest honors from Emory University and her PhD in Marketing from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School. Her research interests include market signaling, information asymmetry and uncertainty in buyer-seller relationships, sales force compensation, and econometric modeling. Her research has appeared in the Journal of Marketing and the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science. She currently serves as the Interim Associate Dean for the MS programs at the McCombs School of Business.
Libby Doggett is leveraging her 40 plus years of leadership and management skills honed through work in schools, Head Start and child care with children with, and without disabilities, to build public will and strong diverse local coalitions in Texas to improve children’s readiness for Kindergarten. Recently Doggett served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Early Learning at the US Department of Education overseeing both the Early Learning Challenge and the Preschool Development Grant Programs. In that role Doggett provided both to age eight expertise and policy guidance to the Secretary and served as the ED’s early learning liaison to the White House, the Department of Health and Human Services and other federal and state agencies.
Prior to returning to ED where in the 90’s Doggett served as Executive Director of the Federal Interagency Coordinating Council for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers with disabilities and their families, Doggett worked with the Pew Charitable Trusts. There she directed the Pew Home Visiting campaign where she oversaw a robust research agenda and worked with advocates in target states to build political and public understanding and support for data-driven investments that align with federal guidance. Prior to that, Doggett directed Pre-K Now, a 10-year campaign to advance high-quality, voluntary pre-kindergarten for all three-and four-year olds in states across the country. Through its successes, Pre-K Now significantly increased the investments and number of children attending state supported pre-k. Doggett also worked for the National Head Start Association, directing their HeadsUp! Reading program to improve literacy in early learning classrooms across the country.
Director, Community College Association of Texas Trustees
Manny Gonzalez serves as Director for the Community College Association of Texas Trustees (CCATT), a membership organization representing more than 400 elected trustees and regents across the state’s 50 public community college districts. Dr. Gonzalez builds trustee and regent capacity through professional development, supporting CCATT’s leadership and committees, and engaging CCATT members with legislative issues and strategies coordinated by the Texas Association of Community Colleges (TACC). Prior to joining CCATT, Dr. Gonzalez served as Senior Institutional Support Consultant and Project Success Operations Lead for Trellis Company where he supported a portfolio of under-resourced 2-year and 4-year Minority-Serving Institutions across the south/southeast region. Dr. Gonzalez’s career includes work for the University of Texas at Austin, the Texas House of Representatives, and the White House Domestic Policy Council. Dr. Gonzalez holds a baccalaureate degree from Trinity University, an M.Ed. in College & University Personnel Administration and Ph.D. in Education Leadership & Policy, both from the University of Texas at Austin. During his higher education academic career, Dr. Gonzalez received several graduate fellowships to support his studies, along with various recognitions commending his scholarship. In his free time, Dr. Gonzalez enjoys spending time with his wife Andrea and their three young children (Layla, Manu, and Javi), following the Chicago Cubs, and trying to keep up with various nerdy podcasts.
Lisa Graham co-founded Notley in 2015 with her husband Dan as a way to leverage their own business and investing success. Notley’s mission is to fund and support businesses, nonprofits, and programs making positive change and social impact in the world, which they do by creating an ecosystem where social good organizations can thrive. Notley partners with social impact companies and nonprofits ready to scale. Her previous experience ranges from working on political campaigns to consulting school districts on public school finance. Lisa actively gives back to the Austin community where she serves on several non-profit boards. She holds degrees in Communication Studies and History from The University of Texas at Austin. As a 2009 graduate of the LBJ School of Public Affairs, Lisa completed a specialization portfolio in nonprofit studies through the RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service. She is also a member of the 2012 class of the TANO Certificate in Non-Profit Leadership & Management program. Including being an amazing mother to their three wonderful girls, Lisa enjoys reading, hiking, and yoga.
Caroline Haley entered commercial real estate after graduating from business school at University of Texas McCombs. She is married to Brian, and they have a daughter Jane and son Speller. Caroline also serves on the board of Waterloo Greenway Conservancy and Blanton Museum of Art. The Haleys attend All Saints Presbyterian Church.
Anne E. Jacob is a mother, teacher, volunteer and advocate for children in disadvantaged environments. Anne serves as a Director, on the Board of Directors, of the Jacob Family Holdings, LLC (JFH). JFH, directly and through its subsidiaries, provides financial planning, accounting, and investment management services to the Jacob Family, and is a controlling investor in a number of private companies. Additionally, Anne serves as a Board Observer, to the Board of Directors, of the Arc of the Capital Area, an Austin-based non-profit that focuses on adults with developmental disabilities. Anne was previously a first grade teacher at Downer Elementary School, in Richmond, California. Prior to Downer, Anne received a MS in Education from Mills College, and a BA from Santa Clara University.
Anne lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband and three children. Anne’s middle child, Grayson Jacob, was diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome, a rare genetic disease. Anne is an avid skier and gardener and enjoys all things outdoors.
Aurora Martinez Jones has served as the presiding judge of the 126th District Court since January 01, 2021. She was appointed Associate Judge in Travis County and was sworn in on January 2, 2015. She is from La Porte, Texas, a suburb of Houston, and attended college at The University of Texas at Austin where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Government and a minor in Spanish. She then attended law school at The University of Texas School of Law and upon receiving her law license; she started her own law firm, The Martinez Jones Law Firm, PLLC. As an attorney, Aurora Martinez Jones practiced primarily in child welfare law, juvenile justice, personal injury, probate, real estate, family law, and civil litigation.
Judge Martinez Jones is Board Certified in Child Welfare Law and is a Child Welfare Law Specialist, Certified by the National Association of Counsel for Children. Currently, her judicial position is dedicated to the child welfare dockets in Travis County including the specialty, Family Drug Treatment Court.
She is the past Chair for the Texas Children’s Justice Act Task Force, is the past President of the Austin Black Lawyers Association, is currently on the Board for the Child Protection Law Section of the State Bar of Texas and is on the Board for the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ), among other leadership positions she holds in the community. Judge Martinez Jones is also active in both the local Austin Bar Association and Texas State Bar through her service on various committees. She is a Texas Bar Foundation Fellow and a member of the Robert W. Calvert American Inn of Court.
Judge Martinez Jones and her husband, Mitchell Jones, are the proud parents of two precious little girls.
Jill Kraft is a principal investor at Base Equity Partners, and the founder and CEO of Okena Designs, a real estate development and design firm. Her career began in corporate sales and supply chain consulting with UPS, and she went on to manage sales and cost controls at BuildASign. She acted as general contractor and lead designer on the extensive renovation of Okena Lodge, a commercial event space on Lake Austin featured in Domino and the Tribeza interiors tour. She provides independent logistics consulting, and is currently focused on residential real estate development projects via Okena Designs.
She is passionately involved in the Austin community and served as a founding board member of Carrying Hope for the past two years. She is on the Elizabeth Ann Seton Board, and is an active volunteer with Saint Louise House. She is happily married to husband J.R., and a proud mother to three young children. She is an avid spin enthusiast, a vinyl collector, and enjoys all things outdoors.
Director of Business Development, Central Austin Management Group
Originally from Connecticut, Lauren has lived in Austin for 14 years. She is the Director of Business Development at Central Austin Management group, focused on commercial real estate and restaurant development, including Canopy, Springdale General, Uchi and Loro. Lauren and her family (husband Tom and daughter Paloma) are thrilled to support Friends of the Children and look forward to the impact it will have on Austin and its at-risk youth.
Johanna Peyton is a mother of three, an active philanthropist, and is pursuing a Masters of Public Health from the University of Texas School of Public Health. She received her BBA in Marketing and Entrepreneurial Management from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. Austin has been her home since 2009 and she is grateful for opportunities to help support her community. Johanna has always had a passion for children in vulnerable situations and also sits on the board of Horizons Austin.
President of Foundations (Seton Family Healthcare), Ascension
Miguel Romano serves as Ascension Health’s President of Foundations for Texas, which includes Seton, Dell Children’s and Providence hospitals. No stranger to Ascension Texas, Romano previously served on its Board of Directors and the Ascension Texas Finance Committee and Governance Committee. Prior to this role, he was Senior Business Development and Lending Officer for American Bank, where he provided guidance on business development and regional growth plans for the bank and advised companies on financing and lending. He joined American Bank after serving as President of the Associated Republicans of Texas (ART). Before joining ART, Romano provided strategic counsel to clients in the financial services sector as a director with Public Strategies Inc. (now Hill+Knowlton Strategies). Prior to moving to Texas, Romano resided in Washington, D.C. and held positions at the U.S. Department of Commerce and in the Office of the U.S. Executive Director at the Inter-American Development Bank, where he assisted U.S. companies with commercial and financing ventures. Romano also served as a senior advisor in the Office of International Trade within the U.S. Small Business Administration. In that role, he assisted small businesses with working capital financing and global business development. His experiences while in Washington also include working on presidential campaigns for President George W. Bush and Senator John McCain and serving as a Congressional legislative aide on financial services legislation.
FP&A and Operations Strategy Manager, Waterloo Sparkling Water
David grew up in Austin TX and is passionate about giving back to the community to help break the cycle of poverty though education. He previously served as a junior board member on the KDK Harman foundation. David currently works at Waterloo Sparkling Water in finance and operations. David holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from the University of Michigan and a master’s in business administration from the University of Texas.
Faculty, Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School
Samantha Miller is a courtesy affiliate faculty in the Department of Psychiatry. She provides clinical instruction and supervision to doctoral candidates, fellows and medical residents
Miller has been awarded ABPP specialty board certification in clinical child and adolescent psychology. This board certification attests to excellence in meeting the advanced education, training and professional standing established by the specialty, as well as examination by peers attesting to expertise in the specialty. Miller has expertise in comprehensive diagnostic evaluations and delivering empirically supported treatments, including: Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT International; L1 Certified Trainer), Teacher-Child Interaction Training (TCIT), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (Linehan Institute|Behavioral Tech; Intensively Trained in DBT-A and DBT-C), Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Rational Emotive Therapy (AEI advanced certificate), Motivational Interviewing and exposure plus response prevention.
In addition to her private practice, Miller serves as the senior director of clinical implementation for the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute. She has collaborated with many of our nation’s leading child and adolescent psychologists, psychiatrists and learning specialists, implementing evidence-based treatment programs in both clinical and school settings. Miller consults with psychiatric hospitals, outpatient mental health programs and therapeutic school settings on the implementation of evidence-based treatments and behavior management protocols.
Miller previously served as the director of behavioral medicine for Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas’ chronic disease program. Prior to moving to Texas, she was the director of training at the Child Mind Institute in New York City. In partnership with the New York City Department of Education and New York City Council, Miller served as clinician on randomized clinical trials investigating the effectiveness of TCIT in a general education setting. Prior to this, she was the director of behavior management at the League Treatment Center, a partial hospital program in New York.
Miller earned her doctorate in clinical forensic psychology from the Graduate Center at the City University of New York. Her educational background also includes a master’s degree from the University of Oxford and master’s and bachelor’s degrees from Stanford University.
Miller is licensed to practice in Texas and in New York. She has been published in peer-reviewed journals, authored book chapters and presented at professional conferences nationwide. She is a member of the American Board of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, American Board of Professional Psychology, Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies and the American Psychological Association.
Colleen has worked in a commercial real estate family business for over 30 years. She is married to Frank, and she has 3 adult children. Colleen has served on several boards including Episcopal School of Dallas and as the President of The Elisa Project board. Colleen owned an event management company for the past ten years that provided software to non-profits to ensure their fundraising success.