Jeffery K. Roman, Chairperson
Jeffery K. Roman has worked in the Milwaukee community as an educator, advocate, planner, and coalition builder developing community-based interventions for over 10 years. He has served in various roles within Milwaukee’s community service, nonprofit, and public sectors helping to develop and implement evidence-based best-practices focused on improving access, equity, and achievement in communities of color throughout Milwaukee. He has worked on numerous initiatives involving local and state institutions including the City of Milwaukee, Milwaukee Public Schools, United Way of Greater Milwaukee, Milwaukee Health Department, Medical College of Wisconsin, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, Milwaukee County UW Cooperative Extension, Wisconsin Department of Health Services, and Wisconsin Department of Children & Families, along with a host of community, faith-based, and youth serving organizations. Over the years, he has participated on, led and staffed a number of community coalitions, networks, alliances, and initiatives including the City of Milwaukee Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Workgroup, the Milwaukee Teen Pregnancy Prevention Network, the Milwaukee Alliance for Sexual Health, the Milwaukee Brighter Futures Initiative, the Milwaukee Fatherhood Initiative, the Milwaukee Men’s Health Resource Network, BE the CHANGE Literacy, Life Skills & Leadership Program, and the Milwaukee Boys to Men Coalition. More recently, he is working with the area’s various young professional and minority affinity groups who together are launching the Milwaukee Inner-city Influencers Network.
Jeffery is currently Principal and Director of the Milwaukee Planning Group, LLC through which he is leading the charge locally to develop community-academic-municipal capacities that engage, support and empower young boys, men, and fathers in Milwaukee. He is actively engaged in City’s Black male achievement and fatherhood engagement efforts and focus on aligning policy and resources at the city, county, and state levels to reduce incarceration and recidivism, and improve outcomes in health, education, entrepreneurship, and employment among boys and men of color in Southeastern Wisconsin. This year, he along with partners will launch a focused collective impact initiative titled Milwaukee Healthy Boys, Healthy Men, Healthy Communities to better coordinate and align efforts through the public health lens.
Jeffery is a graduate of Milwaukee Public Schools K-12 full Spanish immersion program, and studied educational policy and community studies at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. He (along with his twin brother Jordan) is the oldest of five boys raised by a single mother in Milwaukee, and is a fellow with the Aspen Institute’s Roundtable on Community Change. Jeffery is also involved in many Milwaukee community service activities including membership with the Metropolitan Milwaukee Alliance of Black School Educators (MMABSE), mentorship and extended learning opportunities with Milwaukee Public Schools and the Milwaukee Center for Leadership Development, and board service with the Alma Center, Inc.- a men’s centered reentry outpatient and domestic violence prevention organization focused on trauma informed care. He also serves as a disaster services volunteer with the American Red Cross in Southeastern Wisconsin.
Jeffery was appointed to the City of Milwaukee Equal Rights Commission by Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in May 2011 and elected Chair shortly after by his peers. As Chair, he works to strengthen community relations, communication, and accountability between City residents, departments and agencies, and engages in community outreach to build capacities that leverage resources for equitable access and opportunities for all City residents and under-served communities most in need.
Chez Ordonez, Vice-Chairperson
Chez Ordonez, a progressive, unorthodox change agent is a lifelong resident of Milwaukee, WI with extensive knowledge and experience in Communications, Journalism, and Government relations. He was raised in a diverse household by immigrant parents who taught him to always look for the third path, think outside of the box and to challenge mainstream practices. He continuously approaches a situation with the framework of inspiring innovation, and leverages his natural ability as a high performing communicator and storyteller for the betterment of those around him.
In his professional career, Chez held many key level positions in the communications and media industries. He served as a Communications Manager for two large telecommunications corporations and proceeded to diversify his talents. He went on to be a journalist, doing live community radio as an on-air producer, fill-in host, to eventually co-hosting. Most recently, Chez served in the Wisconsin State Senate as a Director of Communications, serving US State Senator Lena Taylor. He was charged with directing communications and media strategy, constituent and intergovernmental relations, and serving as an in-house lobbyist. Shortly after this role, he decided to run for local public office, challenging the status quo and providing an outlet for everyone's voice to be heard. He feels that, whether in politics or a media campaign, every voice has value.
Being well connected to the community, and being passionate about its welfare, Chez serves on many boards and has been appointed to several commissions. Currently, Chez has been appointed by the Mayor to serve as a Commissioner for City of Milwaukee Equal Rights Commission. In addition, he is a newly elected board member to the ACLU of Wisconsin and a board member of Equality Wisconsin. He also continues to serve as a top freelance PR consultant and cause lobbyist, while serving as a voice for equality. Concurrently, Chez writes for several papers and websites focused on covering community issues, politics, and communication trends.