From Us With Love Inspired Love Letters

Creative Member Image
CEO of Guitars Over Guns
Chad Bernstein
Chad Bernstein is a husband and father of four amazing kids, the co-founder of Guitars Over Guns, and a professional musician who has been instrumental in the evolution of the “Latin Funk” sound of Miami. Through the universal language of music, Chad galvanized the artist community to use music as a bridge to reach and empower Miami and Chicago’s most vulnerable youth. Chad received a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree from the University of Miami in 2012, turning the focus of his academic studies to Guitars Over Guns in his dissertation, “The Effectiveness of Music Mentoring for At-Risk Youth Through the GOGO Program,” published in 2012. This paved the way for Guitars Over Guns’ research-based methodology and set the stage for Chad and his father, Bob, a Chicago investment professional, to collaborate on the organization’s creation in 2008. Chad took on Guitars Over Guns as a full-time career upon graduating (while continuing a rigorous performance schedule) and was named CEO in 2012. Today, Guitars Over Guns has a $2,000,000 budget with 90 musicians serving nearly 1,000 students a year in 30 sites between Miami and Chicago. In April of 2015, Chad was honored as a CNN Hero for his work and has since been featured on the Steve Harvey Show and in People Magazine. Most recently, Chad received the Ruth Shack Leadership Award, an honor held in Miami’s highest regard. Chad remains one of South Florida’s premier Latin, jazz, and funk artists. While trombone remains his primary instrument, he also plays conch shells, sousaphone, and keyboards with multiple bands. He performs most prominently with the Latin Grammy-nominated Spam Allstars, with whom he has toured throughout Europe and the U.S., and the highly popular Miami-based Latin-funk band, ¡Suénalo!, the inspiration for Guitars Over Guns. He has also worked with Pitbull, Shakira,, Natalie Cole, Frank Sinatra, Jr., Chaka Kahn, John Legend, Phil Ramone, and many more. Chad is currently serving his second term as a Governor on the board of the Recording Academy (GRAMMYs), where he co-chairs their Education Committee. In addition to his work with The Spam Allstars and ¡Suénalo!, two groups that have pioneered Miami’s signature Latin-Funk sound, Chad also works with James Brown’s long-time musical director, Pee Wee Ellis, and Latin pop star, Jencarlos Canela. Chad released his first full-length CD, Suite for 2nd Lieutenant, in 2012, an original body of work he wrote in dedication to his brother, Max Bernstein, upon his first deployment to Afghanistan as a U.S. Marine Corps combat platoon leader. He released that CD after his brother completed his very distinguished service as a Captain and Company Commander in 2014.
Creative Member Image
Executive Director of DVCAI
Tanya Desdunes
Master's Degree holder with a background in the non-profit, academic and cultural education fields; experience providing support for program analysis, academic enrichment and development through the use of social research, data gathering, cataloguing, and historical benchmarking; interested in exploring opportunities in marketing, advertising or product research to use analytical, writing, creative thinking and presentation skills in the business sector.
Creative Member Image
CEO of Radical Partners
Joan Gody
Joan is our visionary leader. She is a powerful connector who is very passionate about equity, getting the best out of people, and combining forces to accelerate change. She is a Clinical Psychologist with a Master of Arts in International Non-Governmental Organizations and a very proud Guatemalan. She brings her high-quality and high-speed energy, idealism, and 10+ years of experience in social change all over 5 countries to help strengthen the social impact sector, as a collective, in our beloved and diverse South Florida. She wears her heart on her sleeve and promotes vulnerability as the co-founder of the Miami chapter of F*up Nights, a global movement to share failure stories. To top it all off, she is a dancer, a runner, an avid yogi, a frequent traveler, and the choco-holic of the rad crew.
Creative Member Image
Attorney, Activist, Speaker
Nik Harris
Shenika “Nik” Harris (she/they), is a queer gender non-conforming attorney, activist, and speaker. She is a native of Tallahassee, Florida and obtained her undergraduate degree in Political Science from Florida A&M University and her law degree from Florida State University. She is licensed to practice law in Florida and Washington DC. Nik is the Vice President of Strategic Outreach for the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest LGBTQ civil rights organization. Prior to joining HRC Nik was appointed by Commissioner Nikki Fried as the first LGBTQ Director to a member of the Florida Cabinet. They have served as a senior attorney, prosecutor and public defender with the State of Florida. Nik is certified by Cornell University in Diversity & Inclusion. She co-founded the open mic event series Thou Art Woman and the non-profit Black LGBTQ+ Liberation, Inc (BLINC) with friend and fellow attorney G Wright. She is the recipient of several awards, including the 2023 Our Fund Commitment to a Cause Award and 2022 Big of the Year for Big Brothers Big Sisters Pride Program. Nik is an award winning toastmaster living in Florida. She serves on boards near and dear to their heart and speaks across the country in support of equality.
Creative Member Image
Professor, Speaker, Entrepenuer
Dr. Yvette Maureen
Dr. Yvette Maureen (Holmes) is a business professional and passionate entrepreneur who has distinguished herself as an accomplished scholar, professor, business advisor, prolific author, host, speaker, and dedicated community leader. A scholar, author, and business school professor, Dr. Yvette is universally characterized as an authority on business marketing strategies, total-body wellness, and success. As one of today’s highly sought-after business experts, she has documented and shared principles and insight on peak performance with thousands of followers around the globe. Aside from her profound impact in academia, Dr. Yvette is a strategy consultant to business leaders. Recently appointed as the Vice President of Communications & Business Strategy for The Taylor Institute, Dr. Yvette supports the firm's coaching and leadership development services. Dr. Yvette provides further strategic vision as the Vice President of Operations & Strategic Planning for Black Women PhDs, where she assists the organization in facilitating opportunities for collaboration, exposure, and mentorship between current and future Black women with doctoral degrees around the globe. As a 5x author, TEDx speaker, and visionary, Dr. Yvette is an advocate for influencing people to change their personal and professional well-being for the better through upliftment and innovation. She challenges people to learn, grow, and move beyond their comfort zones to achieve goals in the areas of business and total body wellness. As a visionary leader, Dr. Yvette launched The AMARA Woman, where she creates specialized resources uniquely designed for the woman on her journey to improve total-body wellness through social connections, health, and happiness, and with a sense of purpose. With followers from around the globe, Dr. Yvette is committed to empowering communities and equipping women to be the best version of themselves through wellness and business solutions. Dubbed the “Queen of Versatility”, she has inspired many to level up their personal and professional lives.
Creative Member Image
VP of Education and Community Engagement
Jairo Ontiveros
Jairo Ontiveros is Assistant Vice-President of Arts Education and Community Engagement at the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County, where he oversees a multifaceted portfolio of programs that engage more than 65,000 K-12 students and adult learners a year in meaningful arts learning experiences. His work focuses on engagement to populations traditionally underserved by the arts. Under his supervision, the Arsht Center's programs have achieved national recognition, including AileyCamp Miami, which received the 2016 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, the nation's highest honor for out-of-school creative youth development programs. Ontiveros has served the National Endowment for the Arts on its Arts Education Panel for Multidisciplinary Arts. He is a member of the National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures. Ontiveros currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Pioneer Winter Collective. In 2014, he was the recipient of the "40 under 40" South Florida Business Journal award for his work in bridging the arts and the business sector.
Creative Member Image
Author, Entrepenuer, Father
Brandon Vega
Father, Author, Community Activist, Entrepreneur, and Speaker. Vega is a Miami, Florida native. For over five years, he has served as a positive resource to those around him. He has earned recognition for his commitment to help promote character development, high self-esteem, and positive peer relationships. He is the founder of The EATN Project and the author of Ghetto Conscious: Evolution of a Rebel.
Creative Member Image
Attorney, Writer, Educator
G Wright
Consistently driven, sometimes mischievous, but always reliable, G Wright is a Jamaican American attorney, writer, educator, and LGBTQ+ advocate who moves through the world with uncommon confidence. G’s go-getter personality and solid work ethic allow her to accomplish just about any goal she sets. Co-creating the popular event series Thou Art Woman (TAW) with her fellow queer women Nik Harris and PJ and later collaborating with Nik to establish BLINC are two such goals. Besides her family, G is most passionate about Thou Art Woman, bringing people together and helping them reach their goals or solve their issues. Her work with BLINC is an extension of her mission to improve BIPOC LGBTQ+ people’s lives and to give them voice and visibility, especially with the onslaught of anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-Black legislation that threatens to nullify the hard-fought gains in the community. On her tumultuous journey to being openly gay, G developed the courage to candidly share her struggles to acknowledge, accept, and embrace her sexuality. This vulnerability has encouraged others to take necessary but often difficult steps to be themselves and walk in their truth unapologetically. G has been organizing and producing events since she was 17. She’s perfected the skill, as evident in the numerous successful events she has planned and produced with TAW and BLINC. Both knowledgeable and accommodating, G is a consistent resource for legal, social, and mental health issues among people in the community. To many of her friends, she’s their biggest cheerleader. To people she meets along the way, she goes beyond the obligatory greeting to consciously make meaningful connections. G firmly believes in having balance in her life, so she makes time to practice radical self-care, which includes hitting the gym at least three times a week, journaling, practicing yoga, and swimming an average of 100 laps on Sundays.
Creative Member Image
Deputy Director of Transinclusive Group Inc.
Nic Zantop
A dedicated plant parent and travel lover, Nic Zantop serves as Deputy Director of Transinclusive Group, a leading Trans-led organization serving South Florida's Transgender and LGBTQ+ community with services and support. With a background in nonprofit leadership, community advocacy, and storytelling, Nic oversees Transinclusive's strategic partnerships, development and fundraising efforts, communications, and media outreach. From speaking engagements like Harvard Law School's Lambda Political Conference to organizing meetings with representatives from the United Nations and government bodies, Nic has honed their skills in connecting with and educating others, while continuing to learn and grow as an advocate. Prior to joining Transinclusive, Nic led marketing and communications efforts at The Pride Center at Equality Park, helping one of the nation's busiest LGBTQ+ community centers pivot their programming and outreach during the height of the COVID pandemic to serve the community in new ways. Their extensive involvement serving on the boards and committees of numerous nonprofit organizations reflects a personal mission of fighting for equitable access to healthcare, resources, and opportunities for all of their siblings. In addition to their advocacy work, Nic has worked as a documentary filmmaker, science and environmental educator, and is the founder of, a popular travel and photography instructional website.


Interested in learning more about the theatre and how you can get involved? Please contact [email protected]