Save the Date:: 2008 Convention will be January 25–27 at Barry University

Convention Key Note Speaker

[Ralph Gilles]

Ralph V. Gilles, MBA
Vice President – Product Design, Chrysler LLC
"The Importance of Self-Motivation for A Successful Career"

Ralph Gilles was appointed Vice President of Product Design in 2006. He currently oversees the Jeep, Truck, and Advance Interior Design Studios. Gilles joined Chrysler's Product Design Office in 1992. In 2001 he was promoted to Design Director of Specialty and Premium Vehicles. There, he led the design team of the most award-winning vehicle ever — the 2005 Chrysler 300. That Studio also produced the 2005 Dodge Magnum, 2006 Dodge Charger, 2006 Dodge Viper Coupe, and the all new 2008 Chrysler Town & Country and Dodge Caravan.

Gilles, of Haitian descent, was born in 1970 in New York, NY, and grew up in Montreal, Canada. His education includes a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Transportation Design in 1992 from The College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Michigan, and an Executive MBA in 2002 from Michigan State University.

Gilles currently serves on the Board of Trustees of POH Medical Center in Pontiac, Michigan, and on the Advisory Board of The School of Industrial Design at The College for Creative Studies (CCS) in Detroit, Michigan, where he also taught Senior Transportation Design from 2003 to 2005.

Ralph, his wife Doris, and two daughters live in the Detroit area. He enjoys amateur car racing and travel.

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Convention Program

Speaker Biographies

Free Admission

Convention Schedule

Friday, January 25th, 2008 9 am – 2 pm
Saturday, January 26th, 2008 9 am – 5 pm
Sunday, January 27th, 2008 9 am – 4 pm


Friday: Andreas Parking lot located on NW 2nd AVE between 115th and 111th Streets with shuttle service available from 8:30 am to 11:00 pm
Saturday and Sunday: Faculty/Staff lot located on North Miami Ave next to R. Kirk Landon Student Union

HALO is hosting its Third Annual Convention, "Nurturing Our Youth for The Future", at Barry University located 11300 NE 2nd AVE, Miami Shores, FL 33161 in the Inez D. Andreas Hall from Friday, January 25th through Sunday, January 27th, 2008. As in years past, the first day of the convention, Friday, January 25th, 2008, will be dedicated to students. We expect to serve as host to middle, elementary, and high school students from both Dade and Broward counties. On that day students will be treated to various talks by role models and motivational speakers. There will be opportunities for free gifts and prizes as well. The winners of our HALO Scholarship essay competition will showcase a PowerPoint presentation based on their essay. HALO will provide lunch for the students. Below is the program for the day:

09:00 AM–10:00 AM: Registration
10:00 AM–11:00 AM: Presentations by prominent role models
11:00 AM–11:30 AM: Live motivational presentation on how to excel in school
11:30 AM–12:00 PM: Public Speaking seminar
12:00 PM–12:30 PM: Lunch (Provided)
02:30 PM–02:00 PM: PowerPoint presentation (10 minutes) by the winners of the HALO Annual Essay Contest on the topic "Contribution of Haitian Soldiers to the War of Independence of the United States of America" based their essay.

On Saturday, January 26th and Sunday, January 27th, 2008, there will be a wealth of presentations and discussions on several topics including art, educational guidance, healthcare education, legal information, engineering and technology, financial empowerment, and political empowerment. See program for more information. An Exhibit Hall of businesses, schools, and universities that cater to the community will be included with plenty of time for networking and socializing during breakout sessions. HALO is organizing a job fair in combination with during those two days as well. We encourage anyone in the community seeking employment to attend.

Transportation to the convention for those without means to get to the convention is kindly being sponsored by Mr. Daniel Fils-Aimé of the Jitney Bus Service Co. During the convention period, anyone who mentions the word convention will be able to board any jitney bus between NE 163rd Street and NE 54th Street. The drop off site will be on NE 2nd AVE at the main entrance to the school. Attendants should walk towards the west side of the campus towards North Miami AVE to reach convention grounds.

In light of the recent claims by Dr. Michael Worobey, an evolutionary biologist out of Arizona, that based on his research the root of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States can be traced back to a Haitian individual back in the 1970s, HALO felt it appropriate to use the convention as a venue to hold a town hall meeting on the subject in order to discuss the report and its implications and effects within the Haitian community as well as its effect on the perception of Haitians within the international community. On Saturday, January 25th, 2008 HALO’s own Dr. Herold Merisier will lead the presentation and discussion on this topic. See full convention program and Speaker Biographies for more information.

HALO thanks our collaborating organizations for their continued support and commitment to helping us see our vision through. They are:

AEDAP Association of Exchange and Development of Activities & Partnership Inc.
AHPSF Association of Haitian Pastors in South Florida
AMHE Association des Medecins Haitiens à l’Etranger (Association of Haitian Physicians Abroad)
Friends of PROFAMIL/IPPF International Planned Parenthood Federation
GIS Growing Individual Successes
HACCOF Haitian American Chamber of Commerce of Florida
HAES Haitian Association of Engineers and Scientists
HAHS Haitian American Historical Society
HANA Haitian American Nurses Association
HAP–C Haitian American Professional Coalition
HLA Haitian Lawyer’s Association

It is our objective to offer a program that is timely and educational as well as varied. We welcome your suggestions and hope to see you at the convention!!

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