“The public banking movement is an opportunity for communities all across the U.S. to take back local control of community cash (taxes, fees and fines) and use it to make our cities and towns vibrant and sustainable – this is exciting.”
Elaine Sullivan grew up in a small town in western Tennessee when small business was still the center of a community’s economy. Her father, a dairy farmer, taught her a powerful lesson when he set the family’s rules to buy only from dairy customers and from businesses providing local jobs. When Walmart arrived in Mayfield, he was quick to say, “this will be the death of downtown.” After Elaine’s daughters were raised and she retired from organizational consulting work, her deep passion for the fair labor movement and reviving local economies took center stage. She helped to found PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) and the groundbreaking Santa Fe Business Alliance, educating the public about the importance of supporting locally-owned businesses and keeping our money in Santa Fe. She advocated for the Living Wage Network and was a founding member of WeArePeopleHere! in 2011.
“Craig Barne’s vision of creating a public bank for Santa Fe, really tied two powerful ideas together…creating a real sense of community and tangible economic justice. His values colored absolutely everything he did…he never stepped outside of them. After he died…I felt a sense of calling… to carry this mission forward.”
A Santa Fe resident for 40 years, Ada was born into a second-generation Italian family in south-eastern Oklahoma where she attended 12 years of parochial school, developing excellent organizational and people skills – and a good deal of guilt if she wasn’t serving a higher purpose. After graduating from the University of Oklahoma, in social work, she interviewed for a job as a Dallas social worker, but was so horrified at the bureaucratic process that she fled. 1970 found her managing an Austin incense factory and launching a “bookkeeping career”.
In the late 70’s, having moved to Santa Fe, she was bookkeeper and office manager for Outward Bound and John Muir Publications and later, Production Coordinator for The Santa Fe Catalogue. And it was in Santa Fe that Ada discovered her passion for facilitating the cultural exchanges of ideas, through art, dance, and tribal ceremonies between indigenous tribes of Mexico and indigenous peoples of the United States. Over the next 17 years she hosted several Huichol and Tarahumara families in New Mexico and regularly traveled to Mexico, bringing food, medicine and supplies.
Inspired by Craig Barnes in 2011, Ada became a board member of the public banking proponent, WeArePeopleHere! The group’s focus on social justice through economic democracy resonates deeply with her values and desire to effect positive change in our community and the world.
Elizabeth was born in West Texas and lived in different cities within Texas into her early twenties. She received her BA degree in Business Administration-Accounting in the mid ’70’s from the University of Texas.
For the next twenty-two years she completed brief stints in both government & public accounting, although the majority of those years was spent working in Santa Fe for Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company in a variety of positions; i.e. accounting, distribution/fulfillment and human resources to name a few plus holding a position on the Board of Directors until the Company was purchased in 2002.
She also kept balance in her life by rearing a son and playing a variety of sports from rugby to golf. She is still actively involved in sports and is quite proud of the man her son has become…in spite of her.
For the last several years, Ms. Rice has focused on mentoring young men & women and sitting on various boards of non-profits or private foundations in both Texas and Santa Fe. She believes passionately in creating community and making it stronger both locally and statewide; hence her interest in creating a public bank.
George is a cultural anthropologist who retired to Santa Fe in 2005. He came from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where his primary focus was public health and medical research. George was born and raised in New York City and spent his teen years on a chicken farm in upstate New York, near Cooperstown. His undergraduate years were divided between Michigan State University and Long Island University, and his graduate years were spent at UNC in Chapel Hill. In 1962 George joined the Peace Corps with a school building project to the West African nation of Gabon. Later, during his graduate work, he did research and lived in Venezuela for two years. Since moving to Santa Fe George has served on the Santa Fe County Health Policy and Planning Board, tutored in the public schools and in November 2016 he was elected to serve on the Governing Board of the Santa Fe Community College.
George’s wife, Dee is a retired professor of community social work, also from the University of North Carolina. Their son, Charles, and his wife Acushla, live in Santa Fe and work in the performing arts with New Mexico School for the Arts, The Santa Fe Opera and The Academy for the Love of Learning. Two grandchildren, Gisele and Beckett, are the Gamble’s “in-house” performing artists.
“I support the creation of a public bank for Santa Fe. I am a board member of We Are People Here and a long-time friend of Craig Barnes, who was dedicated to public banking in New Mexico. Banking on New Mexico, an initiative of We Are People Here!, is actively working to establish a Public Bank for Santa Fe, a sensible plan to keep tax dollars in Santa Fe to support its citizens.”
Walter grew up in New York City and received degrees in Engineering Science (with a minor in Chemistry) and Medicine before heading for the west coast to do post graduate studies in Computer Science. There he met his wife Phyllis and together they founded DKD & Company, a medical research and medical software company, which they sold in 1994 and retired. They moved to Santa Fe in 1999 and while sitting on the board of the Salt Institute Walter met Craig Barnes and launched his second career as producer of live theater. During his ten-year residence in Santa Fe, Walter and Phyllis produced all of Craig’s plays including Queen Elizabeth I, Kings Yellow, The Last Tudor, A Nation Deceived, We Are People Here and several videos of Craig’s political lectures. In 2009 he joined Sunrise Films Limited, a Canadian Film company owned by Paul Saltzman, winner of several Emmy Awards, and co-produced a nationally acclaimed documentary Prom Night in Mississippi. Walter presently resides in Ashland, Oregon with his wife Phyllis.
“From my first conversations with Craig and the BoNM Leadership Team, I realized that it would be an honor and a true calling for me to join the initiative to establish a Public Bank for Santa Fe.”
Janiece Jonsin spearheads Banking on New Mexico’s communications effort, publishing Enews, Twitter, Facebook and website posts, and plays a key role in media relations. Janiece remembers her childhood love of writing and a burning desire to “get the truth out”. While her education began with a business degree, she soon turned to journalism at the University of Georgia, where she revitalized the campus magazine as an undergrad. Georgia, like Silicon Valley, was an early high-tech center and there Janiece discovered her passion for technology, which led to co-founding a highly successful software company. With publishing and entrepreneurial spirit at her core, upon moving to Santa Fe in 1994, she started the magazine, localflavor where she did it all — writing, design and ad sales. She joined WeArePeopleHere! in its early days and decided to devote the remainder of her career to the non-profit sector.