Board of Directors
George Lavigne, President
George Lavigne volunteered for Family Promise in Monmouth County, New Jersey for over a decade before he and his wife relocated to Sarasota in 2013. Originally from suburban Chicago, he retired from a career in insurance (Prudential, ISO, AXA Re, and Munich Re America) where he had management assignments in underwriting, financial planning, and communications. The father of two, he was also once a troop leader with the Boy Scouts of America and a board member of the Community YMCA in Red Bank, New Jersey, and he has always been actively involved in the work of his church.
Sandee Davis, Vice President
Sandee Davis hailed from Garwood, NJ where she worked at Union College as an Executive Secretary to the various college Department Heads and Professors. She moved to Sarasota 35 years ago with her husband Jim and 3 sons and they started up a ran a successful water restoration company, Grimefighters. Sandee has been active in various organizations both in New Jersey and the Sarasota area, She is the founding President for the Sunrise Chapter of American Business Women's Assoc. where funds are raised through the organization awarding traditional and non-traditional scholarships to women. Sandee's involvement with Family Promise started with donating Grimefighters gift certificates for events and then to volunteering at various fundraisers where needed.
Danielle is a current Cardinal Mooney High School student. She is involved in Varsity Cheerleading, The Saint Vincent De Paul Society Board, Student Government serving as the Vice President, along with Mooney Medical, Photo Club, and Paws for the Planet clubs. She graduated her CYD class as the team leader in 2016. She found her involvement with Family Promise of Sarasota through her involvement with CYD along with her love for helping out those in need.
Wendy Leventhal is a native Rhode Islander relocated to Sarasota in 1999. She is a Real Estate agent with Coldwell Banker Previews International for 17 years. She received a BS in Ed from Northeastern University in Boston and worked for many years in schools. She served as the Director of children's services for Easter Seals of Charleston (1991-1999). Raised in a human services oriented family, she was involved with the opening of the first two child abuse shelters in Rhode Island and has been volunteering with Sarasota Family Promise since its inception. She is married with three children.
Shawna Machado is an MSW student at The University South Florida Sarasota-Manatee where her focus is on creating a trauma informed society while working with the community to invoke positive change. She is currently an Adoption Specialist for The Safe Children Coalition, chair of the Suncoast Partnership to End Homelessness, a commissioner on the Sarasota County Florida Commission on the Status of Women, and Student Representative for the Sarasota Chapter National Association of Social Workers. Formerly homeless from 2010 to 2012, she works as an advocate to create awareness of the effects of being homeless.
Joy Mayer works as a consultant, training journalists and other communicators how to better serve and engage with their communities and be responsive to audience feedback. She speaks and trains professionals and students on topics like social media, web analytics, digital strategy, reaching diverse communities and storytelling. She returned to Sarasota in 2015 with her husband and two sons. Before that, she taught at the University of Missouri School of Journalism for 12 years.
Meredith Strahle is originally from Delaware; relocating to Florida in 2001. She is the Banking Center Manager at American Momentum Bank; Clark Road Office; with over 33 years of banking experience. In 2008, she was humbled and thankful to win the James D Yancey Customer Covenant Chairman Award (Synovus Bank) for always putting the needs of the customer first and delivering excellent customer service. It validates everything she believes in and reinforces the type of banker she wants to be. She is active in 10 networking groups. In her spare time; she enjoys riding on a Harley; spending time with her family; and the beach.
Toska Strong has lived in Sarasota for 24 years. She works alongside her husband and his son in a family owned construction and development business. Toska has been involved with the community for many years through the Downtown Relay for Life, Florida Studio Theatre, The Sarasota Alliance for Historic Preservation and the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe. She is active in her church, First Congregational United Church of Christ.
Jeanne Zeigler has lived in Sarasota for over 30 years. She is a Bookkeeper/Business Manager and has worked, among other companies, for the Sarasota Association of Realtors, and for the past 15 years for Frank and Anne Folsom Smith, renowned architect and interior designer. Jeanne has served as Treasurer for many organizations past and present including St. Wilfred Episcopal Church, Florida House Institute, American Business Women's Association (All Achievers Chapter) and her investment stock club. She has worked with Family Promise in many aspects for the past five years including congregation hosting, start up of Cardboard City and fill-in coordinator. She is very eager to serve in a greater capacity by joining the Board of Directors.