Thomas S. Pietrogallo

Chief Executive Officer

As CEO of The Poverello Center, Tom Pietrogallo has led the organization in transforming from a traditional AIDS Service Organization, completely dependent upon Federal Funding to a broader, more sustainable service mission. At the Poverello Center, he has led the improvement of Nutritional Services in our Grocery Programs, increased participant nutritional education opportunities, created youth ‘healthy fuel packs’ for under resourced teens helping them avoid weekend food insecurity and led the organization toward the implementation of a Poverello Pop Up food pantry that goes into area food deserts to distribute healthy groceries (including lots of fresh fruits and vegetables). Under his leadership, the organization has grown programming to serve over 3500 families with chronic/critical illness and food insecurities throughout south Florida. He has an MSW from University of South Florida, obtained his clinical social work licensure in 2001 and received his MBA from Florida Atlantic University in 2003.  He is a member of the National Association of Social Workers, Chairs the HIV Integrated Workgroup tasked with monitoring of and providing feedback on Broward County’s Integrated HIV Care and Prevention Plan.


Tania Taveras

MBA HRM, Chief Administrative Officer

Tania has over 25 years of experience in Human Resources management including all aspects of the employee life cycle: recruitment, on-boarding, staffing, training development, employee relations, and benefits. She received her Bachelor’s in computer systems at Universidad Tecnológica de Santiago – UTESA and her first Master’s Degree from Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra, both in Santiago, Dominican Republic. Her second MBA with concentration in Human Resources Management was earned from Keller Graduate School of Management (New York) and has experience with volunteers and workshop staff at Goodwill Industries.

954-561-3663, ext 120

Shanel Pamphile

Eat Well Center Manager

Shanel Pamphile manages the Poverello Center food pantry, receiving, processing, and distributing healthy foods to over 3000 people yearly. She comes to Poverello with nearly 10 years of Fortune 500 management experience and a passion for food. A graduate of Jonhnson & Whales culinary program, Shanel has a keen eye for customer service.

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Alden Bergeron

Nutrition Manager

Alden Bergeron, RDN, LD/N demonstrates the characteristics of a strong leader. He is our highly energetic Nutrition Manager who understands the nutritional needs of program participants with chronic illness such as HIV, Diabetes, Chronic Kidney Disease, Cardiovascular Disease and other conditions.  He also assists with the implementation of therapeutic lifestyle changes to individuals seeking weight management.  Alden has a background in Culinary Arts from New Orleans, LA and maintains a passion for healthy meal preparation.  Alden obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from both Florida International University and Keiser University.  He worked several years as a Clinical Dietitian at Baptist Health System’s Homestead Hospital in both in-patient and out-patient settings.  Moreover, he actively participated in the initiation of Heal to Grow and Plant Strong programs that emphasized adopting a plant-based diet.  Alden’s culinary background and vast knowledge of diet and nutrition allows him to excel at providing educational cooking demonstrations.  Alden has enthusiastically established dedication for his profession and possesses conceptual knowledge of diet and nutrition.  “Failing to plan, is planning to fail”

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Brad Barnes

Live Well Center Manager

Brad Barnes has worked in HIV for 30 + Years. Brad has been with “The Poverello Center” since 1999 as the Program/Quality Manager. The Quality Manager is responsible for achieving health outcomes and best quality of service and care for the clients of Poverello. The Program Manager is responsible for achieving all grant requirements, starting new programs and maintaining current Client Programs.

Brad is former Chair and member of the Broward/Fort Lauderdale HIV Health Services Planning Council, is a member of the Broward County HIV Prevention Planning Council, Transgender Medical Symposium Committee, Food is Medicine Coalition and Food is Medicine Broward. Brad participates in ongoing training with the United States Conference on AIDS, National Quality Center and National Symposium for Advocacy Capacity Building Project.

Brad also has been working since 1987 for The NAMES Project Foundation/AIDS Memorial Quilt. In 2005 he acted as the Chapter Program Coordinator in Atlanta, GA. From 2009 – 2015 Brad worked on the Clinton Foundation Quilt Display at the Clinton Library in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Brad also worked from 1983 -1996 for the Close Up Foundation in Washington DC as the Supervisor of Special needs. Brad was responsible to mainstream the Visually Impaired, Hearing Impaired and Multiple Handicap High School student into the High School Program.

Brad has been on the Host Committee United States Conference on AIDS and was Faculty for USCA. He has been involved with ACT UP, Provincetown AIDS Support group and AIDS Action.

Brad has been recognized nationally, on the State level and locally for his work in HIV/AIDS. Most recently by the Broward County Board of Commissioners.


Frank Young, III

Be Well Program Manager

Frank started his journey at Poverello as a volunteer helping with tastings of healthy foods in the food pantry. He comes to with a long history of helping others and social service management. A father of six, Frank has his Bachelor of Science from Howard University. As Be Well Program Manager he ensures our federal contracts and food programming meets the needs of our clients.

Roy Bendeck

Thrift Store Manager

Roy is a seasoned retail professional with many years experience at Wal-Mart (the funder who originally helped us double our offering of fresh fruits and vegetables that continues today). He is responsible for our both social enterprise Thrift Stores in Wilton Manors & Pompano Beach.

954-561-3663 x 103 (Wilton Manors)
954-953-7117 (Pompano Store)

Jim Gallo

Assistant Thrift Store Manager

Jim came to South Florida from Connecticut originally to bring family here for health reasons. He began his Poverello experience by volunteering. Originally, he thought it would be a few hours a week, but quickly he was hooked and the volunteer h ours became full time. He was then tapped by Mario, the store manager to begin cashiering on the weekends, but was soon asked to be assistant store manager. His advice for anyone thinking about volunteering is to make the decision and “Keep focused” and “Volunteering not only helps other people, but yourself as well.

954-561-3663, ext 113

Rusty Carbaugh

Consignment/OnLine Sales Coordinator

Rusty Carbaugh is responsible for online sales and promotional marketing communications to increase organizational awareness and generate critical funding to support Poverello’s programs. Rusty has owned and/or was a partner in several business ventures in South Florida, Tennessee and Maryland in addition to holding public office and directorships at national capital area NGO’s. Following some of what Rusty openly calls poor personal and business decisions, he found himself transitioning from organizational donor to a Poverello client. It is this time as a client, volunteer and service designee that enabled Rusty to witness first-hand and personally experience the life-changing work that Poverello does on a daily basis that gave him the desire to join the Poverello Management Team and contribute his wide range of skills and talents. Rusty holds several professional certifications and credentials from the most elite of educational institutions that he puts to good work every day at Poverello so that others may eat well, live well and be well.

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Nioka Irish

Volunteer Coordinator

Nioka Irish comes to Poverello from the US Virgin Islands via Harlem, NY and is responsible for all aspects of volunteer recruiting and management as the full-time Volunteer Coordinator. Nioka initially joined the staff at Poverello as a receptionist in administrative services and was rapidly promoted to Human Resources Assistant and now serves as Volunteer Coordinator. Prior to joining the staff here, Nioka held positions in pharmaceuticals and natural health as well as retail management, construction services and even as an appellate court clerk for the Broward County Clerk for more than a decade where she was responsible for criminal appeal cases including death penalty cases. Her diverse background and excellent people skills are put to good use on a daily basis at Poverello. Nioka believes that her “life journey is to help people” and that she gets to “live that every day at Poverello.”

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Roman Noa

Maintenance Coordinator

As maintenance coordinator Mr. Roman Noa is responsible for a variety of tasks related to maintaining and improving the condition and efficiency of Poverello’s facilities and equipment. Roman is highly skilled, in many instances, he is able to perform maintenance functions himself and where needed he works to identify and contract vendors to provide services or functions that are outside of his skill set. Prior to joining the Poverello management team, Mr. Roman was on-staff in a variety of supervisory maintenance positions at high-rise hotels and condominiums throughout South Florida where he gained a plethora of skill and experience to address the wide-array of needs he supervises here at Poverello.

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