Meet The Staff
- Larry Acosta
- Founder/Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Larry Acosta is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Hispanic Ministry Center, Urban Youth Workers Institute. Larry’s passion is to envision and shape the emerging generation of urban leadership for transformational ministry. Larry’s claim to fame is that he is married to his lovely wife Jayme and they have four wonderful children.
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- Milton Campbell
- Southeast Regional Director
Milton comes to UYWI with 11 years of urban ministry experience. Eight of the last eleven years have been providing leadership to the Children and Student Ministries at Elizabeth Baptist Church, a mega church in metro Atlanta. Another interesting fact about Milton is that he holds a World Record in track in field. Milton is married to the beautiful Christina Campbell. They have two amazing daughters, Malia and Moriah.
- Maria Chavez
- Vice President of Strategy & Execution
Full of passion for at-risk youth, Maria is driven to serve and has 10 years of Youth Ministry experience under her belt. Additionally, she has a passion for Business Administration/Management, which goes a long way! Technically she has no kids, but claims her nieces & nephews as her own. She enjoys spending time with her loved ones, a good concert, is a total movie junkie & is always up for a daring experience – sky diving anyone?
- Cynthia Chege
- Development Coordinator
Cynthia is an MBA graduate from Hope International University. She seeks out ways to appreciate and serve UYWI partners, helps in researching and gathering data to identify prospective donors and also provides support for the executive management. When she is not at work, Cynthia enjoys spending time with her hubby Sam playing tennis or volunteering at her church.
- Bobby Duran
- Event Production Manager
Bobby Duran is our Events Production Manager, when he’s not at his home office you can find him traveling, producing events and meeting with leaders across the country, creating partnerships and networks through training,mentoring and connecting. These leaders will come together to host and support our RELOAD Training Tour. Before UYWI, Bobby was a member of the band PAX217 for 4 1/2 years as a DJ/Road Manager. He now resides in Whittier, CA with his wife Sandy of 8 years and their son, Christian who is 3. They both serve at Mosaic Church in the greater Los Angeles Area.
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- Andy Fierro
- Director of Creative Solutions
Andy comes with volunteering experience in youth ministry. As a volunteer and attendee at various UYWI events, he also knows that we provide resources like none other to youth workers. It is because of this knowledge he was glad to jump on board when asked to join the UYWI Staff. When Andy is not designing for the organization, he enjoys being outdoors, traveling or just reading a good book.
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- Anthony Flynn
- President/Chief Operating Officer
Anthony is moving into his fifth year of service with UYWI and is responsible for the strategic execution of the mission, vision, outcomes and overall operations of the organization. He has over 14 years of corporate, non-profit and ministry experience. Anthony is passionate about equipping and training leaders at all levels and in all walks of life. He is humbled by the privilege of being married to the beautiful Nikita Flynn and being daddy to the greatest son and daughter in the world, Taji and Alaya.
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- Julie Herrick
- Operations Administrator
Julie Herrick is the Operations Administrator for the Urban Youth Workers Institute. She handles event registration, office IT, and curates content for the web. She loves to travel, so visiting RELOAD cities is a great joy. She spends her free time doing triathlons, hiking, camping, and being an honorary auntie to all her friends’ kids.
- Mercedez McDowell
Marketing/ Social Media Coordinator
Mercedez McDowell is an Indianapolis, IN native home of her favorite NFL team, the Colts. She has five years of marketing and communications experience in the non-profit, ministry, and government arenas. Mercedez’s love for the Lord grew tremendously during her 10-months in an extensive discipleship/bible training with DownLine Ministries. She strives to use her gifts and adventurous spirit to reach the un-reached, and equip followers with biblical training to live lives that resemble that of Christ.
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- Fred Oduyoye
- RELOAD / Training Director
Fred is the RELOAD / Training Director and lives in Cincinnati, Ohio. Fred brings to the table years of experience in both the corporate world and youth ministry. He has a passion for building community amongst urban leaders to see them trained and equipped so that they may execute all that the Lord has designed them to do.
- DiAnna Spells
- Training Administrator
DiAnna brings in-depth experience in project management, marketing research, consulting, and conference planning and execution. She earned a degree in Business Administration (Management) from the University of Cincinnati. Having directed several conferences in both the church and para-church settings, along with solid senior administrative skills, DiAnna is an asset to the UYWI staff. She resides in Cincinnati, Ohio with her husband James. They have two children; daughter Jocelyn, a college student and son, James, a high school student.
- Lawrence Yau
- Chief Financial Officer
Lawrence has extensive finance & accounting experiences in various companies and holds a Bachelor of Economics from UCI and an MBA from Claremont Graduate University. With his shared passion for the vision of UYWI, he will build more efficient systems so that the organization may continually serve the emerging urban leaders. Besides crunching numbers, Lawrence enjoys reading, sports, missions, and spending time with family and friends.