Laura Libman

CEO and President of Tia Foundation

As Tia’s President, Laura Libman combines her educational background with her work experiences in global project management, knowledge engineering, and marketing. After working for years as a contractor, Laura decided to complete her undergraduate studies at Arizona State University West, where she received a full tuition scholarship and graduated summa cum laude in English.

Ms. Libman continued her education at The Thunderbird School of Global Management, where she received multiple, generous scholarships. In addition to traditional M.B.A. courses in accounting, finance, and marketing, she focused her studies on International Development with particular emphasis on Latin America. While at Thunderbird, Laura received her certification as a Global Mediator. Ms. Libman is a member of The Border Trade Alliance, The Arizona-Mexico Commission, The National Hispanic Honor Society and The National Society of Hispanic M.B.A.s.  She recently received the Thunderbird Distinguished Alumni Award for Global Citizenship.

Her concentration in International Development provided her with the latest research materials on new models and program designs in that discipline. After taking a Thunderbird course in Washington, D.C., where she met heads of organizations such as the World Bank, The Millennium Challenge Corporation, the International Monetary Fund, the Inter American Development Bank, and USAID, she had to opportunity to see current development programs in practice.

Ms. Libman shares her knowledge in social impact measurement, monitoring and evaluation, and developing a learning culture with her students at ASU’s Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation.

Laura is also on the Board of Directors of and a Group Leader for The Washington Street Foundation, a Phoenix-based mentoring program for economically disadvantaged children.

Shelley Detwiller DiGiacomo

Board of Directors-The Tia Foundation

Shelley is an attorney, specializing in securities law at the firm of Detwiller DiGiacomo & Pisaruk.  Her practice focuses on advising private companies and investors with respect to securities transactions.  She assists her clients from start-up through exit, advising on a variety of business matters including commericial contracts, loan agreements, licensing agreements, supply and distribution agreements and sale and acquisition of assets, securities and companies.

Ms. Detwiller DiGiacomo graduated summa cum laude from Cornell Law School; her M.A. from New York University in Political Science; and received her B.S. in Political Science and her minors in History and Spanish from Arizona State University.  Shelley has been an active member of the Phoenix community, and served as the Board President for Community Information and Referral.  She was also selected by U.S. News and World Report for their Best Lawyers in America for 2013 and 2014 in Corporate Law.

Katie Smith

Board of Directors-The Tia Foundation

Katie is originally from Sparks, Nevada and has lived in San Francisco for 3 years. She is a bilingual project manager who runs the Customer Delivery team at DoubleDutch, a Live Engagement Marketing platform for events and conferences. In her career, she is passionate about people, process improvement, and managing change.

She enjoys traveling, spending time with her loved ones, cooking and dancing. She is even part of a group that performs flash mobs throughout the city! She loves to go camping and plans on becoming a motivational speaker.

The Tia foundation is very special to Katie. She has been enamored with Tia’s mission for nearly a decade and aligns very closely their values. As a Spanish speaker, lover of the latino culture, and proponent for the empowerment of women and minorities, Katie feels “at home” with Tia. She became the first VEA for Tia in June 2016 when she visited the Tuxcueca municipio with the UVM brigade.

Matt Jewett

Board of Directors-The Tia Foundation

Matt Jewett is the Associate Director of Grants at Mountain Park Health Center, providing oversite on $15 million of grants, a 30% increase in his three year tenure with the organization. Previously, Matt was the Director of Health Policy for Children’s Action Alliance, a non-partisan research and advocacy organization, where he oversaw research and communication with media, elected officials, and the community on children’s health issues. He served as a Spanish language spokesperson for an outreach campaign that increased enrollment in KidsCare, Arizona’s Children’s Health Insurance Program, by 30% in 18 months after several years of flat enrollment. He also helped secure passage of legislation signed by the Governor of Arizona that clarified reduced liability for schools that open their playgrounds outside of school hours to promote physical activity. Previously, Matt worked on political campaigns, an efficiency review of Arizona state government in the Governor’s Office, and as a staff assistant to two members of Congress. Matt holds of Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of Arizona. Past community involvement includes six years on the governing board of the Creighton Elementary School District in Phoenix and several non-profit boards. Matt is a graduate of Valley Leadership Institute Class 37.

Dale Lillard

Board of Directors-The Tia Foundation

R. Dale Lillard is the President of Lansdale Semiconductor, Inc., an Integrated Circuit aftermarket manufacturer.

Dale received his B.S. In Electronic Engineering from the University of New Mexico in 1972 and started his career in product management with Motorola.  He spent two years with Fairchild, and in 1980 became President of Lansdale Semiconductor, a semiconductor aftermarket manufacturing company of military  and wireless commercial integrated circuits

He has been active in the American Electronics Association in Arizona, is also a member of the World President’s Organization, and Boy Scouts of America.

Mike Lofton

Board of Directors-The Tia Foundation

Michael Lofton is Owner and CEO of the Lofton Family of Companies, a real estate, investment and development firm, and is an owner and partner of Capital Fund, LLC, a private lending company in Arizona.

He has been involved with numerous professional organizations related to the home building industry and with several charities focused on helping children and victims of domestic violence.


Cindy Yeager

Board of Directors-The Tia Foundation

Cindy Yeager manages programs in Latin America and supports campus-based and off-site programs for Thunderbird for Good. She is a 2008 Thunderbird School of Global Management graduate and has a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations, French and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


Diego Milán

Board of Directors-The Tia Foundation

Diego is a CPA, specializing in entrepreneurship at Corporativo Diemy. Currently Corporativo Diemy invests and provides the management in several industries such as biotechnology, Tequila and Film-making.  He also provides consulting in business development, strategic growth, organizational and financial plans.

Mr. Milán graduated from Universidad Panamericana campus Guadalajara and later completed his International Masters degree in the Moore School Business from the University of South Carolina. Diego leads also Filantropía Diemy a non profit organization mainly focused on funding some projects that assist kids with AIDS and occasionally looks for funding for other entities that assist the elderly or homeless children.

Diego is based in Guadalajara and occasionally writes for local newspapers on travel and sports.


About Tia Foundation

A 501(c)3 non-profit, the Tia Foundation endeavors to provide health-related development strategies, not relief. “Tia”, meaning “aunt” in Spanish, seeks to use our experience, resources and knowledge to link villagers to the means to do for themselves. Learn More...

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