Summit Presenters 2019
  • Yeiry Guevara

    Yiery is a creative with extensive experience in the nonprofit sector. Currently, she is the newest Grants Manager for Houston Arts Alliance. Previously, she served as Manager of Consultants and Programs for National Executive Service Corps (NESC). She was responsible for program/volunteer management, data information system and digital marketing campaigns. Yeiry is also a writer, translator and multimedia artist. Her work, which deals with inter-generational healing, identity and memory, has appeared in Bust Magazine, VICE, and Remezcla. Her mediums range from gifs, embroidery, photography and zines. As an engaging public speaker, she has presented at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, Twitter Headquarters, Columbia University, and Zine Fest Houston among many other places.

  • Kathy Ploch

    Kathy Ploch is a CPA and the Entrepreneurial Services Department Manager at Harper & Pearson Company, P. C. She has been in public accounting preparing all types of taxes for 30 years and has worked with small nonprofit organizations for more than 15 years. Ploch is a past president of the Houston CPA Society as well as Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts (TALA). She is an active volunteer in the VITA program, which offers tax preparation assistance to low-income individuals. Ploch has also offered numerous workshops and talks with Houston Arts Alliance and Fresh Arts.

  • Ashley Small

    In 2008, when social media was newly on the rise, Ashley Small set out on a mission to marry traditional PR with the latest trends in technology. Since then, she has launched a boutique PR and digital marketing agency, Medley Inc., and has worked with organizations such as Major League Baseball, AT&T, The City of Houston and The Rose Houston to meet their marketing goals, specifically geared towards African American and Latino consumers. 
    A Google AdWords certified specialist, Ashley has been nationally recognized by Fast Company Magazine, the Canada Broadcast Network, ABC, FOX and more as an expert in business, technology, social media and public relations. She is an alumnus of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program and Leadership Houston as well as one of Houston Business Journal’s 2018 40 under 40 leading professionals and the 2019 HYPE Impact Business Leader award winner.
  • Ellyse Espinoza

    Ellyse Espinoza is the owner of State Line Designs, a local apparel company and founder of the HTX Boss Babes, a community that hosts festivals and supports female entrepreneurs and creatives around town. She has a background in Graphic Design and started State Line Designs, her first company, at 26 in order to create cute, and comfy sports inspired tees for the city she loves. After only eight months, Ellyse was able to leave her job in education and be a stay at home mom and entrepreneur full time. State Line is going on year five and is just getting started. Ellyse leverages social media to grow her Instagram following and now is one of the most recognized apparel lines in Houston.
  • Icess Fernandez

    Icess Fernandez is a writer, professor, and blogger. She is a graduate of Goddard College’s MFA program. Her work has been published in Rabble Lit, Minerva Rising Literary Journal, and the Feminine Collective’s anthology Notes from Humanity. Her nonfiction has appeared in Dear Hope,, HuffPost and the Guardian. She is a recipient of the Owl of Minerva Award, a VONA/Voices of Our Nation Arts Foundation alum, and is also a Kimbilio Fellow. She is currently an Assistant Professor at Lone Star College.