The Palm Beach Atlantic University Alumni Association Board of Directors has appointed nine new members. Newly appointed to the board are Palm Beach County residents: Yalonda Moring Meckstroth of West Palm Beach, Ben Starling of Singer Island, Victoria “Vicki” Chouris of West Palm Beach, Elizabeth Duncan Eubanks of Lake Worth, Brian Dobrodziej of Jupiter, Leah Chambliss McCrady of Lake Worth, Michael Thorstad of Palm Beach and Evelyn Flores of Riviera Beach. Also appointed was Joseph Thomas of Hartsville, S.C.
Ben Starling is director of philanthropy at The Scripps Research Institute – Scripps Florida. He has served in a variety of leadership roles within the Republican Party, including two-term president of the Palm Beach Republican Club. Starling is a past board member of The Arc, Mental Health Association, The CAREing Foundation and The Governors Club. A resident of Singer Island, he holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
Joseph Thomas works at Edward Jones as a financial advisor. He attends Emmanuel Baptist Church where he leads the College Sunday school class and teaches a class on apologetics. Thomas is a former member of the Greater Hartsville Chamber of Commerce and a graduate of Leadership Darlington County. He holds a bachelor’s degree in communication and is working toward becoming a certified financial planner. He lives in Hartsville, S.C.
Victoria “Vicki” Chouris is vice president and COO of the South Florida Fair & Palm Beach County Expositions Inc. She has worked with South Florida Fair for 29 years. Chouris serves as treasurer on the board of the Palm Beach County Convention & Visitors Bureau and is the immediate past chair of the Palm Beach State College Foundation Board. She is a graduate of Leadership Palm Beach County and is a member of the Leadership Board of Directors. Chouris has a bachelor’s degree in human resource management and a master’s degree in business administration. She resides in West Palm Beach.
Elizabeth Duncan Eubanks teaches science at St. Mark Catholic School in Boynton Beach, Fla. She is an active fundraiser for her school and church, St. Mark Catholic Church, and assists with the children’s percussion band. Eubanks has served as vice chair of the SunFest Hospitality Committee and leader of the Kiwanis Builders Club. She has a bachelor’s degree in zoology, a master’s degree in education and is working on her guidance counselor certification from Capella University. Eubanks is a resident of Lake Worth.
Brian Dobrodziej works at JPMorgan Chase & Co. as a business banker. He is an active member of Grace Emmanuel Bible Church in Jupiter, Fla., and serves as a pro bono consultant for two nonprofits, the Edgewater Alumni Board Association and the Church Financial Education & Transparency Association. A resident of Palm Beach Gardens, Dobrodziej majored in psychology and minored in Biblical studies. He is pursuing a master’s degree in counseling psychology at PBA.
Michael Thorstad is the president and CEO of The Thorstad Group Real Estate LLC. He attends The Episcopal Church of Bethesda-by-the-Sea where he is actively involved in service projects. Thorstad also is a member of the Sons of the American Revolution. A resident of Palm Beach, Fla., he holds a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s degree in business administration from PBA and a master’s degree in political science from the American University School of Public Affairs.
Leah Chambliss McCrady is an employee benefits specialist for Standard Insurance Company’s south Florida market. She previously worked on several political campaigns, including those of Congressman Clay Shaw, Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Congressman Lt. Col. Allen West. McCrady holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and theatre arts from PBA. She lives in Lake Worth, Fla., and attends First Baptist Church of West Palm Beach.
Evelyn Flores serves as a financial advisor for JPMorgan Chase & Co. and has more than 10 years of financial service experience in Palm Beach County. She is an active member of the community and chair of the City of Riviera Beach Economic Development Team. A resident of Riviera Beach, Fla., Flores graduated from the MacArthur School of Leadership and continues to be involved in planning events at the school.
The new officers are: President Shaun Castillo, Vice President Joshua Sheats and Secretary Jim Carr. Serving a second term on the board are: Kelly Queen Chandley, Jeana Vassalotti Colby, Matthew Clark and Joshua Sheats.