Our Board of Trustees

Raul Escarpio

Dr. Raúl Escarpio, Chair
Dr. Raúl Escarpio is a Professor in the Teacher Education Department at Miami Dade College. He has a doctorate in Special Education from Florida International University and a Master’s Degree in Special Education with a concentration in Early Childhood Special Education from the University of Miami. Dr. Escarpio taught for over 13 years in Miami Dade County Public Schools in the areas of general education and special education before moving on to higher education. He has experience working with students with special needs from infancy to adulthood and has advocated for children with special needs for over 20 years. Dr. Escarpio has conducted numerous in-services and workshops for parents on topics ranging from advocacy and special education law to dealing with problem behaviors in the home. His research interests include Hispanic fathers’ involvement in the lives of their children with special needs, early childhood special education, and students with emotional and/or behavioral needs. Dr. Escarpio is an active member in the Council for Exceptional Children, TED, and CCBD. He is also the co-advisor of the student chapter of CEC at Miami Date College. He is married and has a son.

Elizabeth Guinand, Vice Chair
Elizabeth Guinand was born in Venezuela, where she lived and obtained her Materials Engineering Degree from the Universidad Simon Bolivar in 1990. In 1993, she moved and lived in Bogotá, Colombia for 11 years, where she had her three children: Elizabeth, Andres Eduardo and Valentina, and in 2004 she moved back to Barquisimeto, Venezuela to be  a General Manager of an industrial mill dedicated to spiral welded pipes with more than 300 workers.  She coordinated the achievement of the American Petroleum Institute certification and ISO 9000 certification for that mill. After the mill was nationalized by the Venezuelan Socialist Government (2009), she planned to move to the US, getting first a Master’s Degree in Business from the University of Miami. In August 2012, she moved to Florida looking for a better alternative of life and better education for her three kids, especially for her son needing special education services. Elizabeth is significantly committed to learn and help others, and right now she is learning about the possibilities that people with disabilities have in this country in order to be included into society.


Lisa Polino, Secretary
Hi my name is Lisa Polino, I was born and raised in Miami, but lived in New York for 4 years. In New York I had my two beautiful children Lucas and Sophia.  Lucas was diagnosed with 49xxxxy Syndrome when he was born and has taught me to embrace life and certainly appreciate the value of a strong support system. When my husband, Gregory and I moved back to Miami to be closer to family, we encountered some obstacles in getting the help and support that Lucas deserved and that is when Parent to Parent of Miami came into our lives and provided me with hope, help, and support. I was then fortunate to have been given the opportunity to join the team in July of 2013. This was not just any ordinary job for me, but rather something that has meaningful and dear to my heart. So when I left my job, I knew that I still wanted to be involved in this amazing organization so I am now a board member of Parent to Parent of Miami.

Jodi Olson
Jodi is a native of Miami and has been married to her husband, Craig, for 23 years. They are the loving parents to premature boy/girl twins, Lauren and Liam, who are three years old. She feels blessed to be a stay-at-home mother who has been able to devote her time and energies to finding the appropriate services to meet their special developmental needs. She learned quickly that it was a complicated and frustrating experience and desires to help others in the community with much needed support and hope. For this reason, she is proud to be a contributing member of this meaningful organization, helping families enhance the lives of their children with disabilities.



Emmanuel Sinclair

Emmanuel Sinclair was born in Costa Rica and raised in Miami, FL. He currently works in industrial psychology and has a BA in Psychology from Florida International University. Although he has no children of his own, he has witnessed first hand the hope, help and support Parent to Parent of Miami provides. Emmanuel is dedicated to bringing this wonderful organization to all who need it and to help sustain the organization as much as possible.

  Past   Presidents  
1986-1990 Paula S. Lalinde 2003-2007 Maria L. Kneipple
1990-1995 Jackie Gonzalez 2007-2009 Farides Garcia
1995-1997 Isabel C. Garcia 2009-2013 Lileana deMoya
1997-2001 Janet Bell Taylor 2013-2015 Enrique Escallon
2001-2002 Bessie Cardella   2015-2017 Jamie Levin
2002-2003 Elizabeth Fauerbach