Our Boards

Hekab Be Biblioteca de Akumal, C.V. is the legal Mexican entity for the library.  Hekab Be Biblioteca, Inc., a U.S 501(C)3 is the US nonprofit fundraising arm.  Created to support development and fundraising for Hekab Be Biblioteca de Akumal, it is not involved in daily operations and children's programs. The board provides oversight and drives fundraising efforts for our after school program and summer school program. Our basic function is re-granting contributions to the Biblioteca.

Mexican Board

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MIRNA LUCELY TUN PACHO

President

Mirna is a cousin of one of the founders of Hekab Be and has known the library since the beginning.  Throughout her life, Mirna has volunteered, cleaned and taught at Hekab Be.  Mirna joined the Mexico Board in 2010.

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ROCIO CUE

Vice-President

Rocio Cue is from Mexico City but she has been living in Akumal for 22 years.  During all this time, she has seen the changes that this beautiful place has experienced, and for that reason she has tried to protect the area.  Rocio belongs to a organization called Mexiconservaciön, as well as the Marine Mammal Network (REBIMAR).  Rocio is very excited that she was invited in 2021 to be a Board Member of Hekab Be as she knows how critical it is to the area.

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JENNIFER SMITH

Treasurer

Originally from Southern California, Jennifer and her husband Bart have lived in Akumal full-time for 25 years. 

With the purchase of Turtle Bay Café and Bakery, Jennifer and Bart launched a restaurant and community hub that has nourished thousands of residents of and visitors to Akumal since 2003. 

Jen is also the co-founder of the Akumal Arts Festival.  Among her philanthropic initiatives are: organizing regular spay/neuter clinics in Akumal Pueblo, spearheading ongoing animal rescue efforts, hosting annual fundraisers for Akumal’s Red Cross ambulance, and funding public lighting for safety and clean-up efforts.

 She turned her sights on Hekab Be in Winter 2018 and there has been a whirlwind of activity ever since!

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MARIANA

Secretary

Born in Córdoba, Veracruz, Mariana represented Veracruz in handball in the National Olympics.  Hailing from a family of lawyers, she received her law degree in 2004 and has worked for The Paz Law Firm since graduation, as well as working for the Secretary of Health of the State of Veracruz.  She received her Masters degree in administration and management of health systems in 2012, while continuing to work for The Paz Law Firm and Secretary of Health of the State of Veracruz until 2015.

Mariana works temporarily at the INE in the elections of a deputation process (P.R.E.P.) as an electoral assistant in charge of the member of the National Electoral Institute of his city of origin.  She also manages vacation rentals and adopts street dogs.  She is a total lover of dogs and an enemy of injustice.  Mariana is honored to serve as Secretary of the Hekab Be Biblioteca vigilance Committee. 

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ANDREW NICOLLS

Board Member

As a global communications advisor, Andrew has worked in London, NY, Paris, HK and Africa in his 30 year career. He founded 2 groundbreaking PR agencies - Penrose and Copperfield - and has advised some of the most dynamic companies in the world, as well as some of the most interesting individuals in finance.

A regular in Davos and at many other leading global finance events, Andrew is also an art advisor and curator and is based predominantly in Mexico

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JESUS DAVID MONTOYA MENA

Board Member

David is a licensed Clinical Psychologist, educated at Valladolid Yucatan University.  David joined Hekab be Biblioteca in 2018 as a full-time Teacher.

 

“My passion for the library is to see it transformed into a place where children develop their curiosity, are motivated to learn all kinds of social skills, develop their potential, self-confidence, discipline, and leadership.  Since they are fundamental bases for your future and your community.”

 

David joined the Mexico Board in Fall 2021.

U.S. Board

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JENNIFER SMITH

President

Originally from Southern California, Jennifer and her husband Bart have lived in Akumal full-time for 25 years. 

With the purchase of Turtle Bay Café and Bakery, Jennifer and Bart launched a restaurant and community hub that has nourished thousands of residents of and visitors to Akumal since 2003. 

Jen is also the co-founder of the Akumal Arts Festival.  Among her philanthropic initiatives are: organizing regular spay/neuter clinics in Akumal Pueblo, spearheading ongoing animal rescue efforts, hosting annual fundraisers for Akumal’s Red Cross ambulance, and funding public lighting for safety and clean-up efforts.

 She turned her sights on Hekab Be in Winter 2018 and there has been a whirlwind of activity ever since!

Kelly Maher

KELLY MAHER

Treasurer

Kelly retired in 2019 from her corporate job in media sales, moved full-time to Akumal, and quickly dove into volunteering! As the pandemic hit Akumal, Kelly was instrumental in setting up the Food Bank that was a literal lifesaver for many families. She is  an HOA member in her community of TAO Inspired Living.  She joined the Hekab Be Board in Fall 2020. Kelly is excited to use her marketing and networking skills to further the goals of Hekab Be!

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KATHLEEN ALLISON

Secretary

Kathleen lives in Southern California and has been a supporter of Hekab Be for many years.  She joined the Board in Fall 2019.

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MARTI JOHNSTON

Board Member

Marti Johnston has been intimately involved in the arts over the last 40 years as a maker, producer, educator and administrator. First arriving in Akumal, Mexico in December 2008, she stepped into the community, creating friendships and partnerships to enhance the artistic, cultural and social fabric of Akumal.

Kevin _RedBeard_ McKee

KEVIN "REDBEARD" McKEE

Board Member

Know affectionately to all as "RedBeard", Kevin is a long-standing member of the Akumal community.  He first arrived in 1990 to scuba dive and fell in love.  He returned in 1998 as an instructor and cave guide.  He has been volunteering with Hekab Be for many years and has rightfully earned his spot on the Board.

RedBeard is a road warrior, splitting his time between Akumal and Maryland.. and all points in between!