Our Board


Maria Luisa M. Carter, President

Awarded as ” Queen Mother of Torgorme Village” Ghana Africa- 2012

2015 Excellence in Diversity Awards Hodges University

2016 SWF Face Awards


With a professional background in the arts, health and education, Maria Luisa Carter received her Masters in Education from Southern Connecticut University. Her varied professional experience, multi-cultural background (born in Brazil, studied in Europe), and her ability to connect with people from all over the world make her a key part of Bee Gaia. Given her rich background, Maria Luisa has special interest and expertise in programs relating to the African Diaspora, education, and community service, thereby adding a unique dimension to House of Gaia programs. Born in Sao Paulo, Maria Luisa (“Lulu”) Carter began her professional career in education, the arts and community service in Rio de Janeiro, before moving first to Europe and then to the United States 20 years ago. She now divides her time between the US, Brazil and other international travel.With her extensive travels and degrees from Brazil in Speech Therapy, Design, Psychodrama and a Masters in Early Childhood Education from Southern Connecticut University, Lulu views the world through an eclectic and multicultural prism. Her work reflects this approach, as she has initiated projects combining education, community service and arts throughout Brazil (including programs for street children in Rio and a sustainable ecotourism project at the Acajatuba Village in the Amazon where SAS Field programs will visit).Her desire to similarly connect with people from all over the world grew as she and her family sailed on multiple voyages of Semester at Sea. Experiences and connections in Asia, Africa, Europe and Latin America led her to found the non-profit organization Bee Gaia, dedicating to bringing the world together through programs of art, education,well-being and travel. Her work has extended to working with US educational institutions on curiculum development, with special interest and expertise in programs relating to the African Diaspora, education, and community service. Lulu loves art, African dance and is very proud to have been asked to be a Queen Mother of the Ghanian village of Torgome.-


Adam G. Carter, Vice President
Prior to his career in travel, Adam G. Carter studied abroad in Europe and Latin America, and received his MBA in International Marketing from NYU (spending a semester in Rio de Janeiro at UFRJ/ COPPEAD). Afterwards he spent several years in New York on Madison Avenue in the advertising industry, honing his skills in product development and promotion. Looking to combine his love of travel and marketing, he left advertising and in 1984 opened Brazil Nuts Tours, a company dedicated to creating innovative special interest tours. Under his direction, Brazil Nuts Tours became recognized as a leader in such key travel segments as Ecotourism, cultural tours and corporate meetings and incentives. His love of Brazil and passion for tourism led him to explore the country widely, making his company the first to offer destinations, itineraries and properties off the beaten track. In 2007 Adam was elected Chairman of the Brazil Tour Operators Association, the leading association of travel companies selling Brazil in the US, whose members represent 90% of all package tours to Brazil sold in the US. As a Director of Destination Partners, he brings the same passion and set of skills to this new multi-destination travel company.


Lislane Araujo Bruce. Former Treasure
Graduated from Gama Filho University (Rio de Janeiro Brazil) with a B.A. in Psychology.

Lislane is founder of Beegaia, inc. She is responsible for quality control for all of the programs and the facility.

She was nominateed as a MAKER in 2014. 

Advisory Board



Marc L. Shapiro

Marc L. Shapiro is the principal and founder of the law offices of Marc L. Shapiro, P.A.  Marc practices primarily in the areas of Plaintiff’s personal injury and wrongful death cases, complex commercial real estate litigation, title insurance disputes, foreclosure defense, mortgage law, bank workouts, short sales and commercial and residential landlord tenant disputes. Marc also represents and advises real estate investors and entrepreneurs in their transactional dealings including real estate closings, entity structuring and planning for both tax purposes and asset protection.

Marc frequently delivers seminar presentations and is often asked to speak to groups including several real estate investor groups on various real estate and legal topics.

Marc has been cited in local media on various legal topics and he has appeared on local news stations. Marc also makes frequent appearances on the legal eagle section of the radio show “Real Estate Best Buys”.



Gail Beatrice Williams

Chief Diversity Officer for Hodges University, in Naples, FL.

Proud graduate of Hodges University Master of Business Administration, August 2001.

Born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland; mother of three sons, and grandmother of one granddaughter and four grandsons.

She was the receiptant of the 2012 Diversity Face Award in Education.

The award was presented by the D’latinos Magazine and the GulfShore Business Magazine.

Gail is a member of the SWFL Chapter of the Florida Diversity Council, and serves on the Board of the Florida Diversity Council.

In April of 2012, Gail was presented the Multicultural Leadership Award by the Florida Diversity Council at the Diversity Leadership Conference.

In August of 2012, Gail was recognized by the National Diversity Council as the founder and Chair of the Florida Move Conference (Men of Vision and Excellence) and augural event that was developed to address the needs of middle and high school, college and university and young professional males in our diverse communities.

For the exemplary work being done under Gail’s leadership, Hodges University was the receiptant of the 2012 Insight into Diversity Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award (HEED); this award was given in public recognition of Hodges outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion.

Gail was the 2012 Hodges University employee of the year in recognition of her achievements above and beyond the call of duty.

Gail was the 2013 receiptant of the Hodges University Hispanic Institute Promise award.

In 2013 Gail was awarded her Certified Diversity Professional credentials by the Institute for Diversity Certification.

In March of 2014 Gail was one of the 14 women out of 125   recognized by WGCU as “Women Who Make Southwest Florida,” and received the “Makers” award.

In March of 2015 Gail received Delta Sigma Theta of Collier County Diversity

Gail reaches out to various organizations in Southwest Florida including the Collier and Lee County NAACP; the Council of Hispanic Business Professional; the American Cancer Society; the Freedom Waters Foundation; Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida; the Multicultural Center of Southwest Florida; Dress for Success in Lee and Collier counties; the Mental Health Association of Southwest Florida;  the Quality Life Center  in Lee County; Big Brothers Big Sisters; Junior Achievement; PLAN; the Harry Chapin Food Bank; the Golden Gate Thunder Youth  Basketball Team; the Bayshore Education Center; Shelter for Abused Women and Children; Youth Haven; WIN (Women of the NAACP) and  Champions for Learning.


Kimberly Rodgers, LCSW, RPT-S

Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of Florida and Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor through the Association for Play Therapy.  She also supervises clinical social work interns pursuing licensure.  She has worked as a psychotherapist for thirteen years and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Georgia and Master’s Degree in Clinical Social Work from the University of Central Florida.  In addition to serving on the Advisory Board for House of Gaia, Kimberly also participates on the Board of the Mental Health Association of Southwest Florida and is a long-time member of the National Association of Social Workers, EMDR International Association, and the Association for Play Therapy.  She is former Vice-President of the Southwest Florida chapter of the Association for Play Therapy.

Kimberly is founder of Monarch Therapy, an integrative wellness center focused on empowering individuals and families through emotional and behavioral metamorphosis.  In addition to counseling and play therapy, the center offers other integrative supportive services to further enhance emotional healing, wellness, and stress management including support groups, yoga, laughter yoga, breathwork, integrative relaxation, and sound therapy.  Monarch Therapy’s sister site eFitFamily.com offers health related information and inspiration for everyday families to live healthier every day.  The center is also involved with other community and service focused organizations.