Cohorts will meet for a duration of six months from NOVEMBER 2020 TO APRIL 2021.
Meetings will take place virtually on Zoom. Applicants must commit to making their monthly meetings.
Sherra Aguirre, founder of Aztec Facility Services, served as Chief Executive Officer and steered the company for thirty-five years to become a preferred provider of facility support services for Fortune 100 clients in the Gulf Coast, Mid-West and Eastern regions of the US. Aztec provided building maintenance services to higher education, health care and corporate clients with a staff of over 1000 employees.
The company received numerous awards, honors, and recognition for entrepreneurship and business excellence including two awards for Woman Owned Business of the Year by the Women’s Business Enterprise Alliance in Houston, and multiple awards from the Houston Minority Supplier Development Council. Sherra was among the first inductees into the Black Business Hall of Fame at the University of Texas Austin, in 2003, and is a former nominee for Inc. Magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year competition. Sherra successfully sold the company in 2016 to focus on her passion for healthy diet and lifestyle.
As a health enthusiast, environmentalist, and foodie, Aguirre’s first book Joyful, Delicious, Vegan: Life Without Heart Disease will be released in May 2021. It shares her perspective on the healing qualities of compassion, simplicity, gratitude, and the ripple effect a vegan diet can have on individuals, communities and the environment. Sherra is married with two daughters—Tembi Locke, actor, speaker and New York Times best-selling author; and Attica Locke, multiple award-winning novelist, New York Times best-selling author and screen writer/producer.
Juuhi Ahuja founded Wise Men in 1997 in Houston, TX to help IT professionals find their dream job. what started as a staff augmentation company has grown to be a full-service provider of IT Solutions. Wise Men has 400+ employees and contractors performing different IT functions like software development, managed and support services. We work with several Fortune 100 companies including CenterPoint Energy, ExxonMobil, Schlumberger, Entergy, Ryder Truck Rental etc. providing our clients Wise Services day in and day out.
Juuhi philosophy is based on 2Q's, Quick and Quality. She holds an MBA from New York and is a certified yoga teacher. Juuhi loves traveling and practices meditation regularly. Her husband Prakash builds, owns and operates brand hotels like Marriott and Hilton. They have one daughter who is their pride and joy.
In her role as Director of Purchasing & Logistics at CenterPoint Energy, Cindi Salas was responsible for supply chain operations including the procurement (strategic sourcing, procurement planning and purchasing of direct and indirect goods and services), supply/demand planning, logistics, warehousing, material distribution and inventory and supplier management. This responsibility is relative to both electric and gas distribution and transmission, as well as all supporting and corporate aspects for operations across a geographic area that spans six states. In addition, she was organizationally responsible for the company’s supplier diversity program, chair of the Supplier Diversity Advisory Council, and on the Board of Directors for Houston Minority Supplier Diversity Council.
Salas has 37 years of experience at CenterPoint Energy, performing in various leadership capacities, including geospatial information technology, underground line locating, land and right-of-way and street lighting. In these diverse positions she has exemplified stellar work ethics and has been committed to enabling and elevating all those she works with. Throughout her career, she has been a mentor and an enabler for upcoming leaders, various minority suppliers, and worked with innumerable agencies to help influence and raise the bar. She has held various board positions such as the Texas One Call Board, President of Geospatial Information Technology Association of North America and numerous other officer positions.
A very notable accomplishment for Salas was being appointed to the National Geospatial Advisory Committee by the secretary of the Department of the Interior. This committee provides advice and recommendations related to management of federal and national geospatial programs, development of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure and implementation of Office of Management and Budget Circular A-16 and Executive Order 12906. The group also provides a forum to convey views representative of non-federal stakeholders in the community.
In early 2019, Salas retired from CenterPoint Energy and immediately opened her own business, Your Cup of Tea, an old English style boutique dining establishment. Since that time, she continues professional mentoring engagements with several mentees.