Who We Are
Audra Handal – PAVE Centre Executive Director
Audra Handal currently serves as the Executive Director for the PAVE Centre, working in her role at the Kendal United Methodist Church and coordinating closely with the Manfred Memorial Foundation as the Missions Project Manager. Originally from Kingston, Jamaica, Audra Handal started her professional career in the Hotel industry. She participated in a highly selective Hotel Manager trainee program in an all-inclusive hotel where she later served as the Sales Manager.
After moving to the United States, Ms. Handal became the Children’s Ministry Director at Kendall United Methodist Church located in Miami, Florida where she has worked for the past 17 years. In addition to the Children’s Ministry program, Ms. Handal oversees the Missions Ministry which includes work in the US and Jamaica. With deep experience in program management, Ms. Handal has developed and implemented Annual Missions trip, Vacation Bible School and was the primary leader of the mentorship program for at-risk youth from Jamaica in Miami which became the precursor to the PAVE Centre.
Splitting time between Miami and Jamaica, Ms. Handal is married to her beloved husband Charles and has two daughters who are both pursuing their University degrees.
Nasha Francis – PAVE Centre Administrator
Nasha Francis is the Program Coordinator at the PAVE Centre. Born in Kingston, Nasha holds a Bachelor’s of Science
Degree in Business Administration from the University College of The Caribbean. She has spent most of her life in Portland and is a graduate of the Titchfield High School.
Nasha knows the hospitality industry well having served as an accountant and bookkeeper for various businesses in Portland and Kingston Jamaica.
As a member of the Bethesda Gospel Hall, she is active as the youth group dance leader and is also active in other ministries, especially faith development for youth. Nasha and her husband Wendell Francis, are the proud parents of one son, Micah.
Marsha Clarke – PAVE Centre Lead Trainer
Marsha Clarke is a business management professional with a Master’s of Business Administration from Schiller International University.
She works as an enthusiastic and dedicated educator with experiences in teaching, training and coaching individuals and groups in corporate and educational institutions.
Ms. Clarke is also an educational consultant to higher educational institutions and traditional and non-traditional undergraduate and graduate students.
As a business and educational professional, she encourages diversity in her participation with several organization fostering diversity for upcoming youths such as Florida International Leadership Conferences, Delta GEMS Program Youth Career Fairs, Schiller International University Food Festivals, as to name a few.
Samantha Kidd – PAVE Centre Trainer
Samantha was born in Portland and is a graduate of Titchfield High School. She holds degrees from the University of the West Indies in mathematics and also has a Master of education degree in educational measurement.
She currently teaches mathematics and Pure Mathematics at Titchfield high School.
Samantha is passionate about music and loves to see and be part of positive change in youth.
ZengSha Guo – Manfred Memorial Foundation Administrator
ZengSha Guo is the Administrator of the Manfred Memorial Foundation which is a key partner for the PAVE Centre. Additionally, ZengSha works with SEE Inc overseeing operations, administrative and accounting functions. With a keen eye for detail and deep experience in operations, ZengSha works closely with the PAVE Centre on all day-today operations and strategic planning.
Born in China and raised in Connecticut, ZengSha now calls Miami home and is a graduate of Florida International University with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, with a concentration in Finance. Fluent in written and spoken Mandarin and English, she served for two years as the YPO Miami | Ft. Lauderdale Gold’s Chapter Administrator and was responsible for all event planning and member communications representing a international constituency for member from diverse backgrounds. At YPO, she organized all logistics for their annual Economic Summit, the largest YPO event for 350 people and worked closely with donors and sponsors.
Prior to SEE Inc, ZengSha was a customer service specialist working with high net worth clients and was responsible for increasing sales goals in all retail environments where she worked including Nordstrom and Emilio Robba, a high-end purveyor of floral arrangements.
Board of Directors
James "Al" Merritt – PAVE Centre Co-founder
Al was the visionary who developed the concept for the Centre after more than a decade of developing youth and ministry programs in Jamaica, alongside his wife Patricia Chin Merritt, originally from Jamaica.
Raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, Al graduated with a BA in Marketing from the University of Cincinnati in 1983. After working in the U.S. and Latin America for Welch Allyn (a medical device manufacturer), he founded MD International Inc. (MDI) in 1987. Al grew the company to become the leading independent distributor of medical equipment to Latin America and the Caribbean. After developing a robust business for MDI, with offices in 8 countries, Al orchestrated a successful sale of MDI to Welch Allyn. His former MDI management team continues to run the business.
During the same period, Al and a partner built a real estate development company in Cincinnati that has renovated, sold and leased commercial and residential properties. After the sale of MDI this became Al’s primary business activity.
Since 1986 Al became a member of the Florida Chapter of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO), a global network of business leaders. He was instrumental in the founding of a new chapter in Jamaica in 2008. His commitment to this organization grew in 2009 when he became a founding member of the YPO Miami/Ft. Lauderdale Gold chapter where he served as Learning Officer and then President of the Chapter. Al is a member of the YPO Southeast United States and Caribbean Regional Board.
Al is also active in philanthropy and evangelism. Al’s wife and partner in his endeavors is Patricia Chin Merritt. They have three children, ages 18, 21 & 24. They are active leaders at Kendall United Methodist Church in Pinecrest, Florida. Al has served on board committees and led the church’s Leadership Council for three years. He is currently responsible for leading the church missions and outreach programs. He also currently serves on the board of the National Christian Community Foundation of South Florida. In Cincinnati, the Merritt’s have been long term supporters of YMCA Camp Ernst, where Al once worked as the program director and sparked the camp’s efforts to attract more campers from other countries, as well as sponsoring disadvantaged youth scholarships.
In Jamaica, the Merritt’s have worked to establish a long-term sister church relationship with the Methodist Church in Port Antonio. Through this involvement over the past ten years and relationships forged, the PAVE Centre was born.
Al is currently managing his family office including a real estate portfolio, investment portfolio, philanthropic work, and developing a Christian Retreat Center in South Florida with a team of other community leaders.
Patricia Chin Merritt – PAVE Centre Co-founder
Patricia Chin Merritt, “Patsy”, thrives on doing good for others in need. She is an energetic Mother to Rebecca, Sydney and Sam and supportive wife and business partner to Al.
Professionally, Patsy is a past Certified Public Accountant and is the Chief Financial Officer of the Home Office which includes various real estate entities and foundations.
Coldwell Banker Jamaica
Jamaican Tourist Board
Monsignor Michael Palus
C.O. Catholic Church Port Antonio & Speaker at Food for the Poor
Yvonne Ridguard Harris
Attorney at Law
Smatt's Jamaica Rum
Stewart's Automotive Group & YPO Gold Jamaica
Principal of Titchfield High School
Reverend, Kendall United Methodist Church
Frenchman's Cove & Charbonnel et Walker