WaterFire Providence names new leadership on board of directors

PROVIDENCE – WaterFire Providence on Monday announced new leadership on its board of directors.

Charles Newton, a partner with Newton & Newton LLC, was elected chairman of the board. Barbara Mullen, assistant superintendent of student services at Cambridge Public Schools in Cambridge, Mass., and outgoing board chairman James Prescott were elected vice-chairs. Michael Brostek, market vice president at Cox Media, was elected secretary and Erica Guatieri, a certified public accountant, was reelected treasurer.

“We are excited about the depth and breadth of experience these amazing volunteer leaders bring to our organization,” Peter A. Mello, managing director and co-CEO of WaterFire Providence, said in a statement. “With their collective leadership and support, WaterFire Providence is well-positioned to enter the next exciting phase of our organization’s development.”

Newton, who retired after serving for 26 years as the administrator for the R.I. Minority Business Compliance Office, also serves as vice chairman of the Providence Board of Licenses and volunteers on many nonprofit boards. He is a member of the Providence College Black Alumni Association; Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc.; the Providence Chapter of the NAACP; Diversity and Inclusion Professionals; and Leadership Rhode Island.

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In her role at Cambridge Public Schools, Mullen is responsible for ensuring that equitable practices are at the core of each system throughout the district in order to address and redress long-standing inequities and opportunities in student outcomes. Previously as the chief equity officer at Providence Schools and the director of the Learning Leader Network for the Center for Leadership and Educational Equity, Mullen supported Rhode Island school districts with continuous improvement toward equitable outcomes. She is the author of “Secure Your Oxygen Mask First: Strategies to Prevent Burnout in Special Education Practitioners” and numerous publications both digital and print.

Brostek has been a people leader in the radio, broadcast, cable and digital media universe. A lifelong student of learning, he recently completed Stanford’s Graduate School of Business Leadership Program and is Interactive Advertising Bureau certified. Brostek joined Cox Media as the market vice president in 2017 and his career has focused on developing talent in all aspects of media sales and management. Raised in southeastern Connecticut, he is affiliated with Norwich Free Academy and Connecticut State University.