Jacksonville News

Photo by Member Mark Krancer, Kram Kran Photo

Photo by Member Mark Krancer, Kram Kran Photo


Date ArticleType
8/24/2023 4:00:00 AM Member News

JACKSONVILLE, FL – The Nonprofit Center of Northeast Florida is excited to welcome four new Board Members and staff promotions, while celebrating the contributions of departing long-serving Board Member.

New Board Members: 

The Nonprofit Center Board of Directors is happy to welcome Edward Sarnowski, William Hoang, Dr. Audrieanna Burgin, and Jennifer Ryan to the Board. They are committed to the organization’s mission to connect, strengthen, and advocate for the local nonprofit community.  


Edward Sarnowski is a partner in Holland & Knight's Jacksonville office and a member of the firm's Corporate, M&A and Securities Group. His practice focuses on corporate transactions, including mergers, acquisitions, and divestitures. Sarnowski also represents angel, venture capital and other private investment funds in fund formation matters and investments in seed, early stage and later stage startup companies. He has served as a panelist speaking about securities law issues ranging from crafting executive compensation claw back policies, to complying with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's Conflict Minerals Rule, to understanding benefits available to Emerging Growth Companies under the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act. He is also the Pro Bono and Community Service Partner for the Jacksonville office of Holland & Knight. In this role, he coordinates pro bono opportunities for the firm's Jacksonville attorneys, as well as chairs a committee of attorneys and staff that oversees a pool of funds for distribution to community organizations assisting at-risk children. 


William Hoang has been a partner at TTV Architects since 2016. He studied at both American (University of Houston) and European?universities (Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Architecture de Paris-La Villette) for architecture and sustainability. He is a registered architect and interior designer. Hoang has served on the team for the majority of TTV’s continuing contracts with diverse clients that include Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, the U.S. General Services Administration, City of Jacksonville, University of Florida, University of North Florida, Community First Credit Union, and the VA Hospital.?In 2017, Hoang was selected to join the ranks of Jacksonville Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 honorees. He is involved within the community of Jacksonville and has served as the past president of Downtown Rotaract Jacksonville. 


Dr. Audrieanna Burgin is a Senior Research Scientist at WGU labs, a research organization whose mission is to accelerate the pace of innovation in education and increase pathways to learning. At WGU Labs, Dr. Burgin leads equity audits and efficacy research of educational institutions. She is the founding director of the University of North Florida's Diversity in Business program, a community of support for students of color within the Coggin College of Business. Dr. Burgin earned her Ph.D. in Economics from Florida State University, completing her Topics in Educational Attainment & Labor Outcomes dissertation. Her research explores the intersections of labor, race, and education. Dr. Burgin proudly serves as the Founding Chairman of the Board of Directors for Becoming Collegiate Academy, Florida's first HBCU-inspired charter school. 


Jennifer Ryan is the CEO of Volunteers in Medicine, a nonprofit clinic that provides free healthcare for the working uninsured. She is a fifth generation North Floridian with a proven reputation in building and sustaining community partnerships with experience in health care at the national, county and hospital levels. She is recognized for being innovative, collaborative, creative, outgoing, team oriented, adaptable, and professional with expertise in: fundraising, public health, marketing, digital and social media, program evaluation, community health, data analysis, and nonprofit management. Prior to her work at Volunteers in Medicine Jennifer was the Executive Director of the Ponte Vedra YMCA a branch of the First Coast YMCA where she directed strategic planning efforts, fundraising campaigns, and built and strengthened relationships for community development and collaboration. Prior to that, she held positions with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Duval County Health Department, Brooks Rehabilitation and Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science from Mercer University and received a Master’s in Public Health from Emory University. In 2022 Ryan successfully completed Harvard Business School’s Strategic Perspectives on Nonprofit Management. She is a member of the Ponte Vedra Beach Rotary, Jacksonville Women’s Network and the Women’s Giving Alliance. Jennifer is currently on the boards of Family Foundations and Florida Association of Free and Charitable Clinics. In 2022 Jennifer was named one of Jacksonville Business Journal’s Women of Influence and received the TIAA Bank/Jacksonville Jaguars Community Champion Award. Ryan is a Leadership Jacksonville 2012 alumni and received a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Workplace Certificate from the University of South Florida. 


The addition of these new Board Members will support the already existing 10 Board Members in guiding the Nonprofit Center towards their vision of a vibrant, inclusive Northeast Florida that is strengthened by - and supportive of - a healthy, high-impact nonprofit sector. To read the full bios for Board of Directors, visit here. 







Board Departures: 

Having completed 7 years of Board service, the Board of Directors expressed its gratitude to departing Board Member and previous Chair and Vice Chair of the Board, Tim Conner, Partner, Holland & Knight. He served as the most recent past Board Chair from 2019 to 2022 and Vice Chair from 2018 to 2019.  


Nonprofit Center Staff Changes: 

The Nonprofit Center is proud to announce that Deirdre Conner has been promoted to Vice President. She has been with the Nonprofit Center for 6 years, previously serving as the Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives and Evaluations.  


The Nonprofit Center has promoted several staff members. Below is the list of current staff and their titles. To read the full bios for the Nonprofit Center staff, visit here. 


Deirdre Conner, Vice President  

Darien Reynolds, Senior Director of Operations  

Callan Brown, Senior Director of Programs  

Kim Govan, Development and Consulting Director 

Rebecca Milligan, Membership Outreach and Program Manager 

Jomara Smith, Administrative and Programs Coordinator  

Autumn Lee, Communications Director  

Rena Coughlin, CEO 




About the Nonprofit Center of Northeast Florida 

The Nonprofit Center is a vital support system for our local nonprofits. We provide services, programs, and information resources for our members while advocating for the Northeast Florida nonprofit sector locally and at the state level. We provide local government, civic and business leaders, and the media insights and information to promote smart decision-making and public support for local nonprofits. Visit nonprofitctr.org to learn more.