Our Staff

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Hernán Luis y Prado, Founder and CEO

Hernán Luis y Prado served in the United States Navy for fifteen years as a Hospital Corpsman and then as a Surface Warfare Officer. Hernán had three combat tours of duty In Iraq and Afghanistan, and is a graduate of the Navy Surface Warfare Officer School, where he completed the Chief Engineering Officer and Combat Systems Officer curricula. Hernán’s personal decorations include the Navy Achievement Medal and Combat Action Ribbon, as well as various unit and service awards. In 2013, Hernán was recognized by the White House as a “Champion of Change” for Workshops for Warriors’ extensive work and achievements to transition military veterans into advanced manufacturing careers.  In 2014, Hernán received the “Keith M. Turnham Humanitarian Award” for his recognition of his military service and his continued commitment to serving the communities of San Diego. In 2015, Hernán was recognized by the California State Legislature as the “80th Assembly District for 2015 Veteran of the Year”.

Rachel Luis y Prado, COO and Chief Academic Officer

Rachel Luis y Prado joined the Workshops for Warriors team in a formal capacity in 2014. She is a market research leader, carrying more than 18 years of proven experience in leading large-scale global projects and programs, bringing the capability of successfully crossing over numerous industries and market sectors. Prior to Workshops for Warriors, she was the Director of Market Research & Analysis at the Graduate Management Admission Council, a company she worked at for 15 years. She holds a Masters of Science in Survey Methodology from the University of Maryland, and a Masters of Arts in International and Intercultural Communications from the University of Denver.

Amy Sage, Director of Operations & Outreach

Amy Sage has been with Workshops for Warriors since October 2014. Her position within the organization includes supporting leadership within each department including executive, marketing, accounting, school and development. Prior to Workshops for Warriors Amy worked in development at a San Diego based nonprofit. She studied Business Administration and graduated from the University of Hartford. She grew up in Connecticut and found her way to the West Coast to work as a Financial Analyst at a law firm in downtown San Diego. Amy’s primary focus at Workshops for Warriors is on cultivating and stewarding donor relationships, event logistics and providing tours of Workshops for Warriors and VetPowered, LLC.

John Jones, Director of Development

John P. Jones started with Workshops for Warriors in October, 2016. John served in the United States Marine Corps for twelve years as an Infantry Unit Leader and Instructor. John had two combat tours of duty in Iraq and had to retire from military service due to injuries that he sustained during his second deployment. John has been in the nonprofit arena for ten years, ranging from Major Gifts Officer, Executive Director, and National Spokesperson for various military charities. John’s personal decorations include, Purple Heart, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with Gold Star, Combat Action Ribbon, and three Good Conduct Medals. John’s non-personal decorations include, Navy and Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal, Iraqi Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, two National Defense Medals, Overseas Service Ribbon, four Sea Service Deployment Ribbons, Joint Meritorious Unit Citation Ribbon, and Meritorious Unit Citation Ribbon.

Anne Bottema, Education Program Manager

Anne Bottema joined the Workshops for Warriors’ team in January of 2017 as a data operations specialist, in charge of data management for all operations. In May 2017, Anne also took over as the Education Program Manager and is in charge of student recruitment, enrollment, and all other student services. Originally from Grand Rapids, Michigan, Anne joined the Marine Corps at the age of 17 and served eight years on active duty as a Small Arms Repair Technician. Anne has over 13 years of management experience, holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management, and plans to go back to school for her Master’s degree in 2018. She has been working in the non-profit industry for several years and has a passion for helping veterans, wounded warriors, and transitioning service members find success in the civilian work force.

Takashi Yamashita, Cost Accountant

Takashi Yamashita joined Workshops for Warriors in May 2017.  He has more than 15 years progressive experience in accounting, finance, and mergers and acquisitions. Most of his experience has been working for innovative market or industry disruptive projects and companies, ranging in roles from CEO to project manager. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Accounting (Summa Cum Laude) from National University and is an Honorable Veteran of the U.S. Navy. Takashi served as Yeoman for Naval Special Warfare Command in Coronado, CA.

Leta Young, Office Assistant

Leta Young joined the Workshops for Warriors team in September 2017. She is an Active Duty Navy wife and has served as a Command Ombudsman to the Naval Oceanography Operations Command based at Stennis Space Center. As an Ombudsman, Leta offered assistance to Navy families by connecting resources & information, as well as, being a point of contact between families and command leadership. In addition to her experience with the military, she brings over five years of progressive administrative experience from various fields, including the retail industry and healthcare. Leta holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Organizational Communications from the University of West Florida, in Pensacola, FL.

Rachel Dunford, Marketing Intern

Rachel Dunford joined the Workshops for Warriors’ team in May of 2017 as a marketing intern. One of her passions is working with nonprofit organizations. She is thrilled with the opportunity she has at Workshops for Warriors to help our country’s veterans succeed in their post-military careers. Rachel helps run the social media pages, does in-house photography, and helps with other marketing projects. She is currently enrolled in an independent study charter school and also attends a local community college. Rachel will graduate from high school in the fall of 2018 and hopes to attend Brigham Young University upon graduation.

Melissa Nichols, Bookkeeper

Melissa Nichols joined the team at Workshops for Warriors in November 2017 after accepting the position as bookkeeper.  Melissa grew up in a small town where her family served at NAWS China Lake, a facility that provides and maintains land, facilities and other assets that support the Navy’s research, development, acquisition, testing and evaluation (RDAT&E) of cutting-edge weapons systems.  Melissa earned a Bachelor of Science Degree from San Diego State University and has been working in the financial and accounting field for 20 years.  Her passion is helping small business owners and non-profit organizations develop effective financial systems to achieve growth and reach their next level of success.

Keshia Javis-Jones, Executive Assistant

Keshia Javis-Jones joined Workshops for Warriors in November of 2017 as the Executive Assistant to the Founder and CEO, Hernán Luis y Prado. Originally from South Carolina, Keshia joined the United States Marine Corps at the age of 19.  Where she served 10 honorable years on active duty as an administrator. During Keshia’s last tour of duty, she was assigned as the Toys for Tots Coordinator for 5 counties within Western New York area which is where her passion for helping the community began.