Your AZDEC Members

Each AZDEC member has special expertise in international trade, and is dedicated to helping businesses in our state develop global sales.

DEC Executive Committee

Luis Enrique RamirezDEC Chair
Ramirez Advisors Inter-National
(602) 820-3931
2642 E Thomas Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85016

Industry Specialization: Professional Services

“Ramirez Advisors Inter-National, an Arizona-based company with a 15-year track record of success for clients, is a highly specialized firm that is focused in three key areas: international business, regional economic development and cross-border governmental affairs. Led by Luis Ramirez, with over 30 years of international business and governmental affairs experience, the firm works with clients on border infrastructure projects (transportation, federal inspection facilities and energy), federal inspection procedures, site selection and project management, negotiations, binational coordination, regional economic development strategies, partner identification and government procurement. Mr. Ramirez is a frequent presenter on North American trade and policy, border infrastructure development, international relations, start up of international operations, and other key areas of international business.”

Carol Ann Colombo – DEC Vice Chair
Fedelta Partners, LLC
Managing Member
(602) 956-5800
3219 E  Camelback Rd, Ste 809, Phoenix, AZ 85019

Industry Specialization: Information Technology

“I have been an active DEC member for over 20 years, and currently serve as Chair of the Trade Policy and Legislative Advocacy Committee of the Arizona DEC.  I  have legal experience (international business law) as well as trade policy experience.  I have served the State of Arizona as its State Point of Contact to the USTR for over a decade,  and am active in a number of state-wide organizations focused on trade, transportation and economic development.”

Hank MarshallDEC Vice Chair
Clearflow Group US Inc.
VP Operations
(602) 515-1029
4635 W McDowell Rd Unit 150
Phoenix, AZ 85035

Industry Specialization:  Public Policy/Government/Chemicals

“Hank is able to offer his 40 years of international experience in both the public and private sectors to SME’s that are exploring export opportunities. He leverages his extensive and practical export experience and knowledge to relentlessly “champion” exports. An example of that effort is the successful campaign he managed to have the City of Phoenix awarded the Presidents E Award for Export Excellence in 2016.”

Stephen J. Rodis, CPA – DEC Treasurer
Wallace, Plese + Dreher, LLP
Tax Partner
(480) 751-5813
500 N Juniper Dr, Suite 275, Chandler, AZ 85226

Industry Specialization: Financial Services/Professional Services

“Steve Rodis has 30 years of public accounting experience and provides tax planning and consulting to individuals and corporations in manufacturing, distribution, technology, real estate, and construction. Specializing in international tax, he helps Arizona-based U.S. businesses with structuring and income tax benefits relating to exporting and global expansion. His approach includes educating and counseling companies about entity structure, inventory and accounts receivable protection, contracts, income and estate tax treaties, and mergers and acquisitions.”

Carolita Oliveros – DEC Corporate Secretary
Carolita L Oliveros PC
Attorney at Law
(520) 907-5866
PO Box 90657, Tucson, AZ 85752

Industry Specialization: Professional Services

“I’ve been a member of the Arizona District Export Council since 1986 and have served as the Vice Chair for Southern AZ for the past 12 years. I’m a recipient of the U. S. Department of Commerce Award for Business Leader of the Year and have authored numerous articles on international business and e-commerce related topics including “Overview of Global Internet Distribution Laws” and a book entitled International Distribution Issues: Overview Of International Trade And Competitiveness Laws. My professional services include clients throughout the USA, Central America and the Caribbean, South America, Canada, most countries in Europe, the African nations of Kenya, South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria and Burundi. Asian/ Pacific Rim countries of Japan, India, Peoples Republic of China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Australia, and New Zealand. My community service work includes past chair of the Arizona World Trade Fair and past chair of the Tucson Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce International Trade Committee and a frequent speaker at conferences, seminars, podcasts and webinars. I’m an international business transaction attorney and assist clients around the world in setting up distribution and marketing channels for their products and services, protection of their intellectual property rights, international business transactions, business development, e-commerce, international manufacturing and technology.”

Leandro Solorzano – DEC Executive Secretary
U.S. Commercial Service, Arizona
(623) 377-7797
4041 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85022

Leandro Solorzano is the Director of the U.S. Commercial Service in Arizona where he oversees the agency’s programs. He leads a team of International Trade Specialists who work with Arizona companies to increase their exports helping them develop and implement their export strategy. He works with local, state, and federal agencies to provide companies a full suite of programs designed to help them enter foreign markets. Mr. Solorzano began his career with the U.S. Commercial Service in Philadelphia, PA and later transferred to Fort Lauderdale, FL. He was awarded the Department of Commerce’s Bronze and Silver Medal Awards for his work in promoting U.S. exports around the world. He has been in the international trade field for over 15 years.

Members of the Arizona DEC

Fernando Almeida
Penn International Insurance
Arizona Regional Manager
(602) 363-0703
8328 E San Simon Dr., Phoenix, AZ 85258

Industry Specialization: Professional Services

“I am a Trade Credit and Political Risk Insurance Broker and I have been a DEC member for about  20  years and past Treasurer of the ADEC.  My professional career comprises of 30 years in international banking, working in South Africa, UK and in the USA since 1990. I am also a licensed insurance broker recognized by Exim Bank and private underwriters in the Arizona market. Since 2015 I have practiced as an insurance broker working with local exporters to mitigate the risk of selling on open account terms.   I have also been a speaker at numerous events organized by the DEC and Arizona Commerce Authority on the topics of Trade Finance and International Payments.”

Richard Bowan
Genterra Group
Senior Vice President
(928) 220-1635
121 E Birch Ave., Flagstaff, AZ 86001

Industry Specialization: Professional Services

“I work to expand economic opportunity and prosperity in Arizona communities and regions and in addition, I work with the regional economic development group, Economic Collaborative of Northern Arizona, to help promote and build export capability. In my roles as President/CEO of the Economic Collaborative of Northern Arizona and Associate Vice President of Economic Development at Northern Arizona University I have had the opportunity to work closely with many of Arizona companies to assist or encourage them in building export capability. These companies are creating innovative and cutting edge products and services in the areas of medical products, biomedical devices, bioengineering, digital products, manufacturing, software, healthcare, education, astronomy, informatics, climate science, and genetics/genomics. Through my previous corporate roles and work at NAU, I have a strong network of international connections, expertise, and access to export resources.”

Paul Brierley
Yuma Center of Excellence for Desert Agriculture
Executive Director
(928) 782-5864
6425 W 8th St., Yuma, AZ 85634

Industry Specialization: Agribusiness

“I run the Yuma Center of Excellence for Desert Agriculture, a public-private partnership between the University of Arizona Division of Agriculture, Life & Veterinary Sciences and Cooperative Extension and the desert agriculture industry, coordinating research and solutions to the urgent problems facing production agriculture. I am able to represent the agribusiness sector on the DEC through my past experience in border state agricultural production and agricultural policy, and my current position of running a University Center of Excellence funded by the agriculture industry. I share DEC resources with the Ag industry, and also have access to researchers and other resources available from the University of Arizona.”

Doug Bruhnke
Global Chamber
(480) 459-7455
440 N Scottsdale Road, #9-852, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

Industry Specialization: Professional Services/Technology

“I have 34 years of experience exporting with hundreds of companies including the Dupont Company of Wilmington, DE. Six years ago we launched Global Chamber at Phoenix City Hall to help companies grow across borders. Global Chamber® is a growing and collaborating community of CEOs, executives and leaders in 525 metro regions around the world…connecting member businesses to new opportunities and advancing growth and success. It’s the only chamber of commerce in the world operating in hundreds of locations that helps exporting, importing and investing members to connect through warm introductions to clients, partners, projects, and resources. More:”

Felipe Garcia
Visit Tucson
Executive Vice President
(520) 770-2132
115 N Church Ave. Suite 200, Tucson, AZ 85701

Industry Specialization: Travel and Tourism

“I have developed an expertise in helping US companies adapt their products or services to better attract customers. We developed strategies and programs to support the $1 Billion economic impact of Mexico Visitors to Tucson. I am working in gastronomy projects in Europe, Asia and South America. Currently, I am part of a Destination Marketing Organization helping hotels bring international tourists and retailers sell to those visitors as well.”

Eddie Geisel
Modular Mining
Head of Global Sales
(520) 222-5005
3289 E Hemisphere Loop, Tucson, AZ 85706

Industry Specialization: Fina Metals/Professional Services/Technology

“As the Head of Global Sales for Modular Mining, my responsibilities include global sales, business development strategy, sales and export policy, operational leadership and coaching, and sales performance management, which incude my management of teams around the globe. I am fascinated with the diverse cultures of the world, and I have dedicated my career to finding ways to bridge cultural and institutional gaps to connect global businesses. I have worked in and led cross-cultural teams in mining technology/consulting, aerospace, medical, and international land development. I am an expert in country risk analysis, go-to-market strategies, cross-cultural communication, and negotiation. I have trained hundreds of business development professionals in my career. I speak Spanish fluently, and lived in Mexico for five years directing operations for a land development project. I studied business/marketing at the Eller School of Business and graduated cum laude. I also received my MBA with distinction from Thunderbird School of Global Management.”

Sapna Gupta
Maricopa Association of Governments
Senior Policy Planner
(602) 452-5041
302 N. 1st Avenue, Suite 300, Phoenix, AZ 85003

Industry Specialization: Public Policy/Professional Services

“Sapna Gupta is a Senior Policy Planner with the policy and government relations team at the Maricopa Association of Governments, the Phoenix region’s metropolitan planning organization and council of governments. She engages with public and private stakeholders and works in the areas of transportation, trade, economic development, homelessness, education and workforce development. Prior to that, she was a Senior Policy Analyst at the Morrison Institute for Public Policy at Arizona State University, a policy think tank. Prior to joining Morrison Institute, Sapna consulted and conducted research for civic organizations, nonprofits and universities in Chicago and Paris. She structured financings for public entities as an investment banker at J.P. Morgan and was an economist and consultant at the World Bank’s West Africa Infrastructure Division. Sapna has appeared on Arizona PBS’s Horizon, Arizona Public Media’s Arizona Week and on KJZZ radio, and has been quoted in print and online news publications. She graduated from the Harvard Kennedy School with a master’s degree in public policy and earned her bachelor’s degree in public policy studies from the University of Chicago. She serves on the Board of Directors of Global Ties Arizona and has been a member of the ASU Art Museum’s Creative Impact Board since 2014. Sapna, her husband and their two children have lived in Arizona since 2010.”

Dr. Joseph M. Guzman
Northern Arizona University
Director, Alliance Bank Economic Policy Institute
(928) 864-8755
1641 N Spyglass Way, Flagstaff, AZ 86004

Industry Specialization: Education

Dr. Joseph Guzman served as Director of the Alliance Bank Economic Policy Institute at Northern Arizona University from 2019 through 2021, proactively addressing the region’s economic policy and development needs throughout the Covid crisis. These efforts were recognized by proclamation of the Coconino County Board of Supervisors in December of 2021. In 2020, he was appointed to a three-year term on the Small Business Administration’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC), which provides resources and assistance for small business owners and entrepreneurs. Dr. Guzman previously served at universities and think tanks, including Georgetown, RAND and the Center for Naval Analyses. As a DoD civilian in the US Army and member of the Senior Executive Service in the US Air Force, Dr. Guzman received two distinguished service medals. Dr. Guzman is a co-founder of the American Society of Hispanic Economists, serving as President of ASHE in 2016. Dr. Guzman’s post-secondary education began in Arizona, where he earned a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and an M.B.A from the University of Arizona, followed by master’s degrees in Economics, Statistics, and Business Research, along with a Ph.D. in Economic Analysis and Policy from Stanford University.  

Ray Hays
Envoy Investments LLC
Managing Partner
(714) 797-3386
3885 N Foothills Club Ave., Tucson, AZ 85750

Industry Specialization: Franchising

“Ray Hays is a seasoned international executive with a 29-year track record managing and advising top global franchise companies. He has field experience in over 50 countries, including more than 30 new-country launches. Mr. Hays has worked across many sectors, including IT, healthcare, hospitality, consumer services and business services.  Since 1990, Mr. Hays has participated in more than 70 USCS trade missions, events and related projects. Mr. Hays’ work earned him the USCS Export Achievement Award in 2006, and he served on the global team of EGS LLC, which received the 2015 President’s E-Star Award for Exporting. Currently, Mr. Hays is the owner of an international management firm that serves both U.S. and international franchisor clients on international franchise projects.”

Carolynne Hunter
St. Clair Technologies
(520) 955-3315
3990 E Riggs Road, St 2, Chandler, AZ 85249

Industry Specialization: Franchising

“Carolynne Hunter is the President of St Clair Tech, a manufacturer of Wire Harness Assemblies for Automotive, Military, Bus and Heavy Truck markets. Carolynne attained a BSC in Business from the L’Universite D’Ottawa, and a MA from UWO.  She started her career in Customs Brokerage at the Bluewater Port, Sarnia, Ontario. Her career has included stints with Roadway Express in Sales and Training, at Partner Dedicated in Sales and Operations Management.  In 2002 she joined St. Clair Technologies, Inc. as Manager of Logistics and Compliance. In 2004 she and her family relocated to Tucson, Arizona and she took responsibility for the Tucson Distribution Center along with Corporate Compliance and Fulfillment. In 2011 she accepted the promotion to Director of Supply Chain and relocated to the St. Clair Technologies US offices at Chandler, Arizona. In 2016 she accepted the role of Vice President of Supply Chain. In 2020 she was promoted to President. Carolynne has been very involved in border and compliance issues, including contributing to committees and action groups with the Border Trade Alliance, the Arizona Sonora Commission, the BIA, Women in International Business, CITT and ACHB programs. She has worked with multiple CSuite organizations to further the business opportunities in current and new markets for electrical innovation. Carolynne is a regular speaker at industry events. Originally from Ontario, Canada, Carolynne now lives in Queen Creek, Arizona with her husband. She has two adult sons who are pursuing their dreams in California and Arizona.”

Brett Johnson
Snell & Wilmer, LLP
(602) 382-6312
400 E Van Buren St., Phoenix, AZ 85260

Industry Specialization: Government (State or Local)/Logistics/Professional Services

“I have been involved in international trade matters in Arizona since 2006.  Prior to moving to Arizona, I served in the U.S. Navy as a lawyer, travelling the world handling international matters. I regularly engage US governmental agencies regarding export and import matters.  I regularly advise small and large clients regarding international trade controls, anti-boycott issues, and anti-corruption matters. I also assist clients with government contracting and the inter-connection of international opportunities and government procurement.  In this area, I regularly represent small and socio-economic disadvantaged businesses. I am currently the President of the Phoenix Committee on Foreign Relations and am a Board member for the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Phoenix Economic Council. I serve on the Arizona Advisory Committee for the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition. I have been recognized by the Phoenix Business Journal for the “40 under 40” award and I was a member of Class 36 of Valley Leadership. I have a Masters in International Law and a Masters in International Management. I have graduated from strategic programs with the U.S. Naval War College and The Hague Academy of International Law. I am a Judge Pro Tem for the Maricopa County Superior Court and a Military Judge for the Arizona Court of Military Appeals.”

Bill Jordan
Allied Tool & Die Co., LLC
(602) 695-0931
3807 S 7th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85040

Industry Specialization:  Aerospace/Defense/Manufacturing

“Bill Jordan is a third-generation owner of Allied Tool & Die, expanding a family legacy that began in 1951. Learning from the ground up caused precision manufacturing to become a passion. He has led the company to grow its sales and operations beyond US borders. He received his MBA from Thunderbird in 2019. 

Bill is President of the Arizona chapter of the National Tooling & Machining Association and President of the Arizona Precision Machining Apprenticeship Program. He believes in teaching the skills needed to expand the manufacturing workforce for the US market. Fun facts about Bill include he’s been a soccer referee for youth leagues for 15 years and believes there’s always a better mousetrap!”

Gunnar Lars Light
Global G Group
Managing Partner
(480) 239-4219
4710 S Wildflower Dr., Chandler, AZ 85248

Industry Specialization: Information and Telecom/Professional Services/Technology

“Gunnar was appointed to the Arizona District Export Council in 2007 and had been serving as Vice-Chair, and Chair of the Export Resource Committee from 2008 – 2018.  His committee was responsible for managing Export Outreach, Mentoring and Networking events.  Gunnar regularly volunteers time to join   regional export related events in support of the DEC, USEAC and other related organizations. Gunnar has been a frequent attendee at National DEC Forums and National DEC Conferences and is a regular speaker on export topics throughout the community.  Gunnar has joined the White House Business Council to discuss the President’s export and international trade agenda. Gunnar provides global consulting services to small and mid-sized businesses interested in expanding operations into new markets overseas.”

Dr. Martha Medina
21st Century HealthCare, Inc.
Vice President of International Sales
(480) 428-7418
2115 S. Wilson St., Tempe, AZ 85282

Industry Specialization: Professional Services

“Dr. Martha Medina is Vice President of International Sales at Tempe’s leading manufacturing and distributor of dietary supplements, 21st Century HealthCare, Inc. She has a background in R&D and Quality of consumer goods and has extensive experience and knowledge in international registration, sales and marketing and logistics of dietary supplements. Martha comes from an international family and has followed a career path leading from the laboratory into international sales. She has successfully registered and entered markets all around the world, with a concentration in the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America. Her background in Biochemistry, together with her work experience and multilingual and international upbringing have allowed her to establish long-lasting and successful connections for exporting products worldwide.”

Randy Nance
Dillon Aero
International Business Development Manager
(480) 882-8367
8009 E Dillon’s Way, Scottsdale, AZ 85260

Industry Specialization: Defense Products/Manufacturing

“My experience in the International market has spanned over many years, and most continents around the world. I have invested alot of time effort and money into countries and regions around the world identifying and opening up new markets (specifically, Asia, Africa and Middle East) for sales and partnerships with many foreign OEM’s of defense related equipment.”

Kevin O’Shea
Arizona Commerce Authority
Senior Vice President, International Trade
100 N 7th Ave, #400, Phoenix, AZ 85007

Industry Specialization: Professional Services

“I have been a proud and productive member of the Arizona DEC for several years and have introduced dozens of Arizona companies to USCS and its various products and services.  In my work as Vice President, International Trade at Arizona Commerce Authority, I work on virtually a daily basis with the AZUSEAC in connection with AZSTEP, ExporTech and other export assistance programming.  I have considerable experience providing export counseling to companies (both product and service), delivering export education programs, running trade missions and organizing Arizona delegations at trade shows in diverse sectors such as aerospace and defense, medical device and technology, mining equipment and technology, and consumer products, among others.”

Nina Ossanna
Sonora Bioconsulting, LLC
(520) 248-8260
4140 E. Cooper St., Tucson, AZ 85711

Industry Specialization: Agribusiness/Health and Medical

“I work primarily with early stage companies in the life sciences sector, especially the transition from research institutions to private industry. I have taught entrepreneurship and new technology development in Mexico (through CONACYT) and as a visiting professor in the Philippines. In Tucson, I chair the bioindustry trade group, BIOSA and am secretary of a non-profit called BIOSA Innovation seeking to establish a life science incubator in Southern Arizona. Currently I am a founder of a diagnostic company, principal of my consulting business, and have spent years commercializing new tech from universities as well as serving as a patent examiner at the USPTO in Washington, DC (N. Virginia). As part of my consulting business I have the US office of a Mexican company and am seeking regulatory approval in order to introduce a new veterinary product into the US.”

Michael Patterson
Spencer Fane, LLP
(602) 471-5170
2415 E Camelback Road, Suite 600, Phoenix, AZ 85016

Industry Specialization: Legal: International distribution, cross-border contracts, corporate, transactional, international disputes, consulting, aviation/aerospace, healthcare agreements, food distribution.

“I am deeply entrenched in the Arizona trade community, have served as a “friend of the DEC” for 2 years, am active in all the cross border engagement organizations in Arizona, and more than half of my practice is international trade, international M&A, international distribution agreements, international litigation and transactions. I am an international lawyer, providing assistance in trade, international distribution, formation of structures in foreign nations with local counsel to facilitate trade, drafting of international export and distribution contracts.”

Melissa Proctor
Melissa Proctor Law PLLC
(480) 447-8986
16427 N Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale, AZ 85254

Industry Specialization: Consumer Goods/Defense Products/Professional Services

“I am an international trade attorney whose practice focuses on the wide array of issues involving global trade, customs law, export controls and economic sanctions. I worked extensively with companies in industries including: aerospace and defense, computers and software (including encryption), electronics and high technology, semiconductors, telecommunications, medical devices, pharmaceuticals and life sciences, food, agriculture and dietary supplements. cosmetics, textiles, apparel and footwear, automotive, E-commerce/online retail. etc. Over the past 23 years, I have had the opportunity to counsel and work directly with manufacturers, exporters, distributors, retailers, and services providers (both small and large organizations) in increasing their export activities, expanding into new foreign markets, and ensuring their compliance with the applicable export and import requirements (e.g., designing and implementing effective compliance programs, performing risk and compliance gap assessments, taking corrective action with the appropriate government authorities when warranted, etc.). I have also provided export and international trade-related in-house training, seminars and webinars to companies and trade associations around the country. For many years, I have partnered with the AZDEC and U.S. Commercial Service on their export-related educational workshops as well.”

Craig Rochette
CYR International LLC
(480) 232-1853
7130 E. Saddleback St., Unit 14, Mesa, AZ 85207

Industry Specialization: Professional Services

“Craig R. Rochette has operated his own Export Trading Company, CYR International LLC, here in Arizona since 1988. In this capacity he has consulted with and worked for several Valley companies in an effort to expand their export sales. Mr. Rochette has specialized in launching health and beauty products for export, contract negotiations, succeeding in foreign registrations and international account management. These projects have spanned the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Latin America and Asia. He has developed a network of importing distributors and secured OFAC licenses for Sudan, Yemen, Iran and Syria. This also included direct negotiations with the Kuwait Ministry of Health as well as the designation of an approved supplier to the Iraq reconstruction efforts. In addition, for a period of 5 years he had developed a regional sales meeting program for agents in the Middle East attending annually in Dubai for a major healthcare products conference. Between 1997 and 2013 he has organized exhibition appearances in over 25 countries, having travelled for business in another 35 countries. Most recently he was brought to Guangzhou China to speak at a conference for agents in the region. He has served locally as a guest panelist on doing business in Taiwan, the Middle East, and Mexico. In April 2018 he was awarded “Emerging Exporter” status by the Sun Corridor EDGE program. Craig graduated from Providence College, the Université de Fribourg (Switzerland) and the University of St. Andrews (Scotland). In 2002 he directed a European sales office in Southwest France for an Arizona manufacturer.”

Henry Silentman
Navajo Nation/Shiprock Regional Business Development Office
Senior Economic Development Specialist
PO Box 1864, Shiprock, NM 87520

“I represent the Navajo Nation, a Native American tribe in Southwest United States.  The Navajo Nation is approximately 27,000 square miles.  I work with the Navajo Nation to promote business development and expansion within the Navajo Nation.  The industries represented within the Navajo Nation include power generation, fossil fuel extraction, large scale farming, hospitality and tourism and light manufacturing.  I am particularly interested in promoting industries which can thrive in rural areas.  I have worked with the Special American Business Internship Training (SABIT) and the larger Department of Commerce to promote exports and investment within the Navajo Nation.”

Steven Zylstra
Arizona Technology Council
President and CEO
(480) 353-9277
2800 N Central Ave, Ste 1530, Phoenix, AZ 85004

Industry Specialization: Technology

“President & CEO of a trade association that has over 800 members, most of which export. Trade policy is an area where we do advocacy. We also do trade related programing and trade missions.”