As we begin a new fiscal year, we want to congratulate our new Board President, Alexandra Spredemann, and welcome our new board members. ¡Felicidades Alexandra! Alexandra works at Cummins Inc. as a Project Leader. She holds a Doctor of Law from Universidad de la Sabana and a master’s degree in tax law from El Rosario University in Colombia.

I feel an immense sense of gratitude, commitment and joy. Being part of Conexión Américas has been key in shaping who I am today. It ignited in me a passion for service, compassion and justice, and has been paramount in my personal growth as it provided the space and tools to learn about the community I am part of. I look forward to supporting the organization and keep learning from each of the people that are part of it.

New Board Members

Santiago Tefel

Senior Vice President and Financial Advisor, Pinnacle Financial Partners

Our entire family is passionate about the mission of Conexión Américas, and I’ve covered a lot of ground and served in a lot of roles within the organization. My involvement goes back to the early days when the offices were on Music Row. I was a teacher with programs like Puertas Abiertas (Open Doors) and Negocio Próspero (Prosperous Business). My wife has participated in programs like Charlemos (Let’s Talk), where she was paired with a non-English speaking person, and they both learned each other’s first language. I have also joined in the fun side of Conexión, like taking part in Battle of the Paellas, where I cooked and served my family’s 100-year-old paella recipe. To me, Conexión Américas means community. Ever since I moved to Tennessee, they have been involved in my life. A former employee’s band played at our wedding. We use Karla’s Catering often for events. At one point, Jose Gonzalez and Renata Soto were even my neighbors. Conexión Américas is the extra spice that makes all the difference on special recipes. It is mighty and bold!

Jacques Cartier

Chief Financial Officer, Des-Case Corporation

 Moving to Chicago, then to Spain for two years, moving back to Chicago, and finally to Nashville in 2010, I can say for me coming into a community is a big deal and is exciting in so many ways, yet still a little nerve-wracking to say the least. Conexión Américas is a great welcoming resource and to me means warm open arms for acclimating families of different backgrounds from all over the world to a great growing city. Also, Conexión helps Nashville by showing what many incoming folks and families bring to the city which is both unique and valuable. What excites me most about Conexión Américas is the amazing momentum that the organization brings to Nashville, and what the exciting future holds for both the organization and the community. Where we are as a country and at many levels, Conexión Américas is a shining star that now seems like a constellation of hope for many individuals and families coming to Nashville and a great bright light to our city.

Mozianio “Trey” Reliford

Associate, Neal & Harwell, PLC

Conexión is a light for so many. It uplifts and empowers not just the Latino community, but anyone that comes into contact with it. Tennessee is enriched by an organization committed to being a rising tide for all, and it is strengthened by Latinos having a powerful organization that represents them, is committed to their success, and then puts its actions where its words are. At this time in America, we are at a crossroads on many levels. The abounding questions are “who will we be” and “what are our values?” Conexión is an organization that can and will help make sure that when we respond to those questions we are proud of the answers. I’m excited about the opportunity Conexión has ahead of it to help shape our city and state for the better, and help create a society we can be proud of.

Brian Tate


Jose Gonzalez helped me understand just how many valuable programs they provide that directly help Latino families in Tennessee – I’ve especially enjoyed the focus on economic and small business education and resources. Conexión has met several challenges head-on since its inception and I’m excited to see how it continues to evolve to address our current and future challenges.

Laura Zapata

Founder, Clearloop

Growing up in Memphis, I had the pleasure of joining forces with Conexión when I volunteered for Latino Memphis as part of a network of advocacy organizations from the state of Tennessee that lobbied our Congressional representatives on behalf of DREAMers and the DREAM Act. Conexión Américas continues to grow in reach and influence just as the Latino and immigrant community continues to dig deeper roots and spread its wing across the state. From the early days of providing access to basic services to a fledgling community, to empowering students and entrepreneurs and becoming a resource to governments during this health crisis, Conexión is an integral part of what will continue to make Tennessee a better home for everyone.” “I’m thrilled to be joining the Conexión Américas Board at such a pivotal moment in our nation’s history—where we get to have hard conversations and play an active role as we continue to strive toward a more just and inclusive state that reflects the many contributions of a newer generation of Latino Tennesseans.

Dr. Alison Asaro

Regional Pediatrician, Mid-Cumberland Region, Tennessee Department of Public Health

I have been aware of Conexión Américas and their advocacy over several years due to my work with pediatrics, public health, and Latinx families of Middle Tennessee. After working with and advocating for Latinx families at a grassroots level for the past two decades, I had been yearning for a way to expand my efforts and be more impactful. I am certain that Conexión Américas is the avenue by which I’ll be able to broaden my efforts. Tennessee is stronger when everyone is more successful and supporting the Latinx community has to be a part of this. We are living in a time of unimaginable strife but also great potential and energy for change. I think Conexión Américas will play a big part of energizing Middle Tennessee, and Tennessee at large, by realizing the vast potential of the Latinx community to impact this change. I can’t wait to start working on this!