Leadership


Neusa Gaytan, Interim President & CEO

Neusa Gaytan has served at Mujeres Latinas en Acción for thirty years in different program capacities. As the Senior Vice-President of Programs, she is in charge of staff development, supervising the administrative and clinical aspects of all programs, and making sure Mujeres’ program staff adhere to ethical, quality, and mental health standards.

Neusa leads the organization’s institutional advocacy efforts and develops relationships with key partners, stakeholders, and government agencies to insure that Mujeres' programs are well-represented. Neusa has served on numerous coalitions and boards such as the Illinois Certified Domestic Violence Professionals (ICDVP), the Cook County State's Attorney’s Sexual Assault Advisory Group, the Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault's (ICASA) governing body, and the Chicago Says No More Steering Committee.

A native of Brazil, Neusa has a B.A. in Psychology from the Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo Leon in Mexico and she has completed her coursework for a Psy.D. from the Adler School of Professional Psychology. She also has completed training in Cognitive Therapy and conducted a psychiatric practicum at Grant Hospital. Neusa completed an internship at Metropolitan Family Center conducting couple, family, group and individual therapy with adults and children.  Additionally, she has completed a 40-hour training in Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault. 

Maribel Velázquez Gerstner, Board Chair

Maribel is Chief Operating Officer of the Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association (DCIIA), a nonprofit association dedicated to enhancing the retirement security of American workers. Maribel is responsible for financial and operational management, staff development and execution of strategic goals. Previously, Maribel was Senior Vice President of Operations and Finance at Combined Insurance with responsibility for its customer service, financial operations, agent compensation, retention, new business and underwriting teams. Prior to that, Maribel had a long career at Allstate Insurance Company in a variety of leadership roles. She was President & Chief Operating Officer of Allstate Financial Services, a retail broker dealer offering securities products to Allstate’s customers nationwide. Maribel was also Chief Compliance Officer of Allstate’s non-proprietary broker-dealers and a tax consultant on the Advanced Planning team. Prior to joining Allstate in 1993, Maribel was a Tax Manager with the personal financial planning group at Arthur Andersen & Co. where she provided comprehensive financial planning services to high net worth individuals and families.

Maribel is an active mentor to others, having benefited from participation in the Menttium 100 and Leading Women Executives programs.  Maribel has been on the Board of Directors of Mujeres Latinas en Acción since 2012, serving as Treasurer, Vice Chair and now Chair.

Maribel received her B.A. degree from Northwestern University and her law degree from Loyola University of Chicago School of Law.  She has several professional designations including Certified Financial Planner, Chartered Life Underwriter and Chartered Financial Consultant.  She holds Series 6, 7, 24, 26 and 63 securities licenses and received the Chartered Regulatory and Compliance Professional designation from the FINRA Institute at Wharton.