RE board bids farewell to alumni award winner, welcomes five new trustees

School leaders welcomed four new trustees – Bill Bermont ’93, Jorge A. Gross Jr. ’97, Kristen McMahon and Camilo Miguel Jr. – and one returning trustee – Albert E. Dotson Jr. – to the 2024-25 Ransom Everglades Board of Trustees on July 1, 2024. Their arrival coincided with the departure of 2024 Head of School’s Alumni Award for Distinguished Service to the School recipient Rudy Prio Touzet ’76, who stepped down from the board after 15 years of service, and conclusion of the two-year term of Jonathan Fitzpatrick as board chair.
Prio Touzet, who received the prestigious award from Head of School Rachel Rodriguez during an upper school awards ceremony last spring, departed amid salutes and tributes from school leaders and peers after the final board meeting of the 2023-24 year. Presenting him with an RE captain’s chair, board members lauded Prio Touzet for his partnership and leadership as a member of the board, including a stint as chair.

“Rudy always puts the school first,” former board chair and RE parent Eric Mendelson said after the May 30 meeting. “He was always so thankful for what the school did for him and how it helped transform his life … This institution is a much better place because of him.”

Prio Touzet, the founder and CEO of Banyan Street Capital and parent of Rudy Jr. Prio Touzet ’18 and Jack Prio Touzet ’20, said he loved his time on the board and credited his peers with making him better in every respect. “I’ve learned so much," he said. "I’ve become a better parent, a better partner and a better businessman.” Several parts of campus bear his family name – the Touzet Patio at La Brisa and the Touzet Quadrangle in front of the Fernandez STEM Center. Prio Touzet helped bring the La Brisa property to Ransom Everglades in 2016 and to integrate that property with the upper school campus.

The board also honored Fitzpatrick for his two years of service as board chair, thanking him for his strong leadership, decisive action and dedication. Under Fitzpatrick, the board crafted RE’s new mission and core values, brought David Clark ’86 back to RE as Chief Operating Officer and appointed Rodriguez Head of School.

Miguel Dueñas ’95
succeeded Fitzpatrick as chair of the board and Ricky Stokes ’94 stepped in as vice-chair. Kinga Lampert stepped aside after six years of dedicated service on the board, and Elana Oberstein-Harris '93 remained on the board but concluded her term as vice-chair.

“We are grateful to Rudy, Kinga and Elana for their outstanding service to our school and leadership in the larger community,” Rodriguez said. “We are also thrilled to welcome an outstanding group of new trustees to the board, as well as Miguel as chair and Ricky as vice-chair. All are talented, accomplished, community-minded and service-driven. We know they will help Ransom Everglades continue to live out The RE Way, the school’s mission and core values.”

Here’s a look at RE’s newest board members:

Bermont, the son of former RE board chair Peter Bermont, is Managing Director at Raymond James and Partner of Bermont Gold Wealth Advisory. Prior to assuming his current position, he held senior positions in Leveraged Credit Sales & Trading at Credit Suisse Securities and Citigroup. Earlier in his career, he worked at The Pritzker Organization and First Chicago Bank. Bermont currently serves on the Board of Directors of Boys & Girls Clubs of Miami Dade and was previously President of the Board of Trustees of the Cathedral School in New York City as well as serving on various Duke University alumni organizations. He earned a BA in history from Duke; an MBA from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern, and a Master of Science in Accountancy from Loyola University of Chicago. He also proudly presents the Ronni Weksler Bermont Community Service Award, which was established in loving memory of his mother, to a deserving RE upperclass student annually.
Dotson, who previously served on the RE board from 2008-17, is Chief Executive Officer and Managing Partner of Bilzin Sumberg, a preeminent Miami-based commercial law firm. He serves on leadership boards or councils for Vanderbilt Law School, the Florida Council of 100 and the Baptist Health South Florida Miami Cancer Institute, and previously chaired the Orange Bowl Committee, the Miami Dade College Foundation and 100 Black Men of America. Dotson has also served in various notable appointed positions: the President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans (appointed by President Barack Obama), the Federal Judicial Nominating Commission, the Miami Dade College Presidential Search Committee and the Miami-Dade County Blue Ribbon Task Force on Ethics in Government. Dotson received his BA from Dartmouth College and his JD from Vanderbilt University.

Gross is Managing Partner at Trivest Partners, where he leads Trivest Recognition Fund investments. He joined Trivest in 2006 and is involved in all aspects of the firm, including the organization of investment opportunities, completing acquisitions, portfolio oversight and firm management. He is a member of Trivest’s Investment Committee and serves as chair or board member of numerous Trivest portfolio companies. A Miami native, he previously served on the board at St. Thomas Episcopal Parish School, including as treasurer. After graduating from Ransom Everglades, he received a BA in economics from Columbia University and MBA, with honors, from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

McMahon is deeply involved in service activities and focuses on various philanthropic endeavors. She serves as co-chair of the annual gala for City Harvest and has served on the board of directors of 15 Madison Square North Condominium in New York, as Program Coordinator for Family Dynamics Youth Mentoring Program, on the "Paddle for Pink" Host Committee supporting the Breast Cancer Research Fund, and on the Host Committee of Autism Speaks. She previously worked for Bank of America in the Interest Rate Sales - Fixed Income Division, a position she also held with Merrill Lynch and retained after the merger of the two firms in 2009. She received her BA in Modern American History from Brown University, where she was a student-athlete and a member of the Ivy League Champion field hockey team. 

Miguel is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Mast Capital, a renowned vertically integrated real estate investment and development firm with a global vision. Since 2006, Mast Capital has been reshaping the real estate landscape, merging visionary design concepts with innovative investment strategies across a diverse portfolio exceeding $3.5 billion in total project capitalization spanning from ultra-luxury hotels, residential condominiums, multifamily, to office and commercial properties. Miguel previously founded and served as President of Vertica Group, a land investment and strategic development firm, and he co-established Clear Title Group, a specialized firm in real estate title insurance. He serves on the board the Perez Art Museum, The Center for Arts and Innovation, Friends of the Underline, and the Real Estate Advisory Board of the University of Miami. He also contributes to the Urban Land Institute’s Southeast Florida Advisory Board and the Urban Development and Mixed-Use Council. Miguel is a graduate of the University of Miami and earned his degree in Business Management. 
Founded in 1903, Ransom Everglades School is a coeducational, college preparatory day school for grades 6 - 12 located on two campuses in Coconut Grove, Florida. Ransom Everglades School produces graduates who "believe that they are in the world not so much for what they can get out of it as for what they can put into it." The school provides rigorous college preparation that promotes the student's sense of identity, community, personal integrity and values for a productive and satisfying life, and prepares the student to lead and to contribute to society.