Healing Arizona Veterans Board, Team and Specialists
Volunteer Board Members
Robert Sexton, M.D.
Dr. Sexton has been a resident of Tucson since 1989 where he was in private practice until 2008. At that point, he rejoined the military after an almost 38 year break. Once again a U.S. Soldier, he was deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan where he was a physician with Civil Affairs and a Field Surgeon attached to a forward deployed unit. In 2009, during his Iraq deployment, he was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre Syndrome and was treated with plasmapheresis for the acute phase of the disease. Four years later, he once again began experiencing severe symptoms similar to his prior GBS experience. After neurological evaluation, he was then treated with HBOT, which resulted in a very significant clinical improvement — “a life changer.” Dr. Sexton’s military, medical and personal experience with this therapy gives him a unique perspective as a strong advocate for HBOT.
Niomi Galindo has extensive experience in retail banking and team leadership with a primary focus in customer service and developing client relationships. She has fifteen years of banking experience and five years in the lending industry. Niomi has held a number of supervisory, managerial and executive positions in Arizona with Primary Residential Mortgage, WAFD Bank, Western National Bank, and First National Bank of Arizona.
Born and raised in Phoenix but currently living in Tucson, Niomi is fluent in Spanish. She is the former chairperson for the Oro Valley Rotary and an advocate of HM3, a non-profit organization that’s mission is to help victims of domestic violence abuse.
Mary T. Yaconiello, BSc., CPA, PFS
Mary Yaconiello is a Senior Tax Manager at BeachFleischman PC. Working in public accounting since 1988, she has extensive experience providing tax planning and compliance services.
Mary’s education includes Virginia Tech (Bachelor of Science in Mathematics), University of Southern Indiana (Certificate in Accounting), and American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (Personal Financial Specialist Accreditation).
Her past associations include Finance and Executive committee member as well as Past audit committee chair and board member for Intermountain Centers for Human Development.
Volunteer Senior Team
Sa’ad J. Allawi, MBA
Strategy and Operations
Mr. Allawi is the co-founder and Chairman of the Board of Performance Logic Inc. He has 35 years experience in consulting, 20 of those to healthcare organizations in various capacities. Prior to co-founding Performance Logic, Mr. Allawi led Nextera’s healthcare practice. Before that, he built and was the chairman of William Mercer’s healthcare provider practice. Prior to that, he built and was the director of APM’s Operations Improvement program.
In addition to healthcare, Mr. Allawi worked in other industries. He was the Director of Business Development for AI industries and worked for McKinsey and Co., where he was a consultant to Fortune 100 companies and public sector organizations. He was an engineer with CA Parsons, the turbine generator manufacturers, and a section leader for MW Kellogg, petrochemical design engineers. He served on the Advisory Boards of a number of Healthcare Service and Technology companies and the Private Sector Development in Iraq for the CPA. He was a prior president of Oro Valley Rotary and Board member for Healing Arizona Veterans. He is an extensive public speaker on management and the Middle East.
Lyle Branch, M.B.A
Lyle is a Maryland native who graduated from Morehouse College in 2011. He was commissioned in the United States Marine Corps where he served 7 years as a Logistics Officer. During that time, he deployed with the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), where he served as a Combat Support Platoon Commander, and served as the Executive Officer for the Marine Corps Motor Transportation School at Fort Leonard Wood.
While stationed at Fort Leonard Wood, he went on to receive his MBA from the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland. He has been in the healthcare industry since his Honorable Discharge from the Marine Corps in 2018. Lyle is currently a product manager where he uses his marketing skills to push the advancement of healthcare, to better treat cardiovascular disease.
Richard (Rick) Chimblo, Ph.D.
Rick is a retired geophysicist and active Rotarian. He has over 40 years of experience as a professional, a manager and an executive in the petroleum industry. Since his retirement, Rick has served as President of Rotary Clubs in Texas and Arizona. He has worked on various committees to develop and fund projects to assist the underprivileged children and families of Mozambique, Cameroon, Morocco, Mexico and Guatemala. Rick has used his industry experience to develop financial models and budgets for non-profit groups and Rotary Clubs, successfully registering these entities as 501(c)(3) organizations with the IRS.
Hugo Frausto, Bachelors in Political Science and Business
Hugo was born in Mexico and was raised in Tucson, Arizona. In 2004 he joined the United States Marine Corps where he served for 10 years. During his time as a Marine, he went on 2 combat deployments to Al Fallujah, Iraq and 1 Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) to the Asian Pacific. He also served as a Marine Corps Drill Instructor and trained over 500 new Marines. After 10 years of service, he decided to pursue his true passion in the field of finance and obtained a Bachelors in Political Science with a Minor in Business from Arizona State University. After completing college, he accepted a role with Morgan Stanley as a Financial Advisor. He is currently pursuing a Master of Science degree in Finance. He is married to his wife of 15 years and together they have 3 children. During his transition from the Marine Corps to his current career he experienced severe symptoms of PTSD. He and his eldest son, who is diagnosed with Down Syndrome, underwent HBOT treatment and experienced significant improvements in their quality of life. He is a volunteer on the Housing Selection Committee at Tucson Habitat for Humanity.
Richard Harris, Retired Army Military Police
Digital Marketing Support
Richard was born in Maine and raised in the Azores, and settled in Northern California, where he attended American River Community College. He joined the US Army in 1985 as a Military Police. He deployed to encounters, peacekeeping missions, and operations worldwide. During his military career, he held the following positions First Sergeant, Operations Sergeant, Platoon Sergeant, and Chief of Detectives. He retired from the US Army after spending 25 years serving with the Military Police. Richard attended the University of Washington and became a polygraph examiner with additional Post Sexual Offender Testing certifications. After receiving assistance from Healing Arizona Veterans, he plans to return to the University of Arizona to complete his IT degree.
Benjamin Little, Associate BA
Benjamin was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona. He enlisted in both the United States Navy in 1997 and the United States Army in 2002. He served one combat deployment in Iraq from 2007-2008. As a Combat Veteran with PTSD/TBI, Benjamin understands that Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy is a power medical resource that can aid in improving disabilities and improve quality of life. Benjamin is also President of another non-profit organization, Veterans Alternative Medical Procedures. Benjamin is passionate about helping Veterans seek medical treatments and as a Certified Peer Support Specialist, he enjoys educating other Veterans about alternative therapies that help mind, body and spirit.
Robin O’Bannon, Technical Sergeant, USAF, Retired
Robin served from 1987 to 2005 as an Enlisted member of America’s Air Force, retiring as a decorated, 100% service disabled Gulf War Veteran. Her career fields included Dental Technician and Manager, Leadership Instructor and Enlisted Accessions Recruiter. Robin has received two Associates degrees and an Occupational Instructor Certification from the Community College of the Air Force, a BBA in Training and Leadership and an MBA in Training and Development.
Matt Riley, MBA
Matt is a Phoenix-area native who graduated from the University of Arizona in 2008. He subsequently took a commission in the Unites States Marine Corps where he served for 7 years as a Communications Officer. During this time, he had the privilege to deploy to Afghanistan with 1st Marine Division, command a platoon with 3rd Assault Amphibian Battalion, and serve as a Company Commander at Weapons Field Training Battalion, Parris Island among many other duties.
Matt currently manages a team of marketers to innovate healthcare technology to better treat venous and peripheral arterial disease at Becton Dickinson in Tempe, AZ. He and his team research the disease-state, understand where new tools are needed, and work with physician-customers to ultimately allow patients to receive better care. Additionally, he leads the business segment’s chapter of the Veterans Associate Resource Group, connecting over 900 employees to veteran-related causes.
Don Siglin, MBA
Experienced executive with over 45 years of managerial leadership:
- Eight years of work in the electronics industry as a Materials Manager
- Twenty years as a plant manager in the Grain Bin sector of the Agricultural industry, final duty was VP of a division
- Twenty years as a Sales Engineer for an environmental system for the oil and gas energy industry.
- Mechanical Engineering Degree from Iowa State University MBA from University of Illinois.
- ROTC Commissioned Officer in the Corps of Engineers.
- Two years active duty with one year in Vietnam.
Marc is a retired Director from Raytheon Company with 32 years experience as a professional and manager in the Defense industry. During his career and in retirement, Marc has served as President of a Rotary club and is currently a Rotary Assistant Governor for the northwest Pima County region. Marc serves on the Board of the Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona. As past development lead of various non-profit organizations, he brings years of non-profit fundraising and project management experience to the HAV mission.
Carol Henricks, M.D.
Medicine, Behavioral Neurology, Clinical Neurophysiology, Psychology
Dr. Henricks has been a practicing neurologist in Tucson, Arizona, since 1999, focusing on coordinating all the best traditional and alternative therapies to optimize patient outcome. In 2004, she added the use of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) as an adjunctive neurological therapy for my patients as part of a complex neurological recovery program. Her private practice is dual: hyperbaric oxygen therapy and neurology. TBI is a focus of her work with our military veterans. Dr. Henricks is the Medical Director of Healing Arizona Veterans. As a regular writer for the blog, she discusses HBOT as an effective treatment for TBI, the misdiagnoses of PTSD that can lead to unnecessary medication, and the hard-won triumphs over TBI and PTSD. She believes it is a tremendous honor to work with our servicemen and women, helping them recover and to improve their quality of life.
Lillea Teja Ellisian, D.Ac., Dipl. Ac.
Nutrition and Homeopathy
Dr. Lillea T. Ellisian is a board-certified doctor of acupuncture and practitioner of Eastern Oriental Medicine, licensed in the state of Arizona through the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. Dr. Ellisian earned her medical degree at the Phoenix Institute of Herbal Medicine and Acupuncture where she also completed several advanced hours of clinical training treating patients of all ages, conditions and backgrounds. Additionally, Dr. Ellisian comes with 3 years of clinical naturopathy training from Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine, as well as an undergraduate degree in Nutritional Science from Cal State University Los Angeles.
Lori Klauber AS, BS, AART, CHT, ICHT
Hyperbaric Technology and Operations
Lori Klauber is an accomplished professional who has 48 years experience in the medical field. She is an entrepreneur, manager, administrator, accountant, paralegal, consultant and creative health care worker. Her diverse professional background includes both mainstream and alternative medicine. She has had experience in radiology technology, endocrinology, chiropractic, Chinese medicine, acupuncture and hyperbaric oxygen therapy, business management, finance, and billing, made the Heritage Registry of Who’s Who and much more.
For the last 19 years Klauber has been the supervisor, office manager and right hand associate of Dr. Al Reach, the avant-garde founder and principle who founded Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy of Arizona (HBOT of AZ) in 1998. Lori, as the professional liaison, coordinator and director of HBOT of AZ, interacts with professionals and helps patients who come to the facility from all over the United States. Lori’s ability to communicate helps her clients feel well informed and comfortable around her.
John Szpisjak, M.A.
Research and Analysis
John Szpisjak moved to Arizona in 2008. He completed a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies – Public Management from Northern Arizona University in December, 2010. He completed a Master of Administration in Professional Writing from Northern Arizona University in May, 2016. His capstone project title was “Investigating Business Priorities in Catalina, AZ.” He has spent the last ten years working in retail. Before that he worked over nine years for a municipality near Chicago, Illinois.
John has helped Healing Arizona Veterans in the past when he created a list of veteran owned businesses.
Jennifer Vasko, B.A., A.A.
Marketing and Web Design/Development
Jennifer Vasko is the Principal/Creative Director for 26 Point 2 Designs, a Tucson-based design agency that helps startups and small businesses increase their online presence through effective marketing strategies including rebranding, business-branded solutions, and website development and design. With almost 2 decades of design experience, Jennifer is the recipient of five National Awards from GDUSA for her website work. A former Los Angeles television and film production manager, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communication from Berry College (Georgia) as well as an Associates degree in Advertising Art from The Art Center Design College (SUVA) in Tucson, Arizona. In addition, Jennifer is Senior Graphic Designer for the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at the University of Arizona.
Jennifer keeps active by racing in triathlons and volunteering her time with local non-profit organizations.
Chandra Au Walker, MBA
Chandra was born on an Army base in Nuremburg, Germany and raised in Hawai’i. She has four generations of military service in her family and her children aspire to be the fifth. Her spouse has been serving in the military for the past 18 years. She has had nearly 15 years of Finance/Accounting experience and 5 years with military, non-profit organization. She served as a Board member for Healing Arizona Veterans for three years.
Chandra has recently decided to bring a bit of Aloha into the financial services realm and has started her own bookkeeping business. Additionally, she has had a variety of roles to include; customer service, online marketing, sales, and other activities. She graduated from Stevens-Henager College in 2014 with a Master’s in Business Administration with an emphasis/minor in Asset Management.