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Dr. Shannon-Banister is a truly dedicated civil servant whose work over the length of her career has significantly benefitted  Aurora, Colorado, and the greater Denver Metropolitan area. In 1989, Dr. Shan- non-Banister co-founded the Metro Community Provider Network (MCPN), which is the Feder- ally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) that pro- vides primary care and other health-related services for the medically underserved not only in the City of Aurora but also for areas outside of Aurora.

As a fierce advocate for civil rights, Dr. Shannon-Banister also worked to bring the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) to Aurora, where she was instrumental in starting a new NAACP chapter in 1991. Her efforts gave the residents of Aurora, Colorado’s third largest and most diverse city, an organization that fully understood the need to protect and ad- vance the cause of civil rights.

A true icon of our community, she is also President and Chief Executive Officer of the non-profit foundation, Grand Design Inc. , that works to preserve African American culture through community outreach, hosting concerts, and visual arts performances.



Alice Jackson, Grand Design Board Secretary

Native Detroiter in Aurora since 2002.

Bachelor & Associate degrees

Mother of 2, grandmother of 12, great-grandmother of 1 

Former 2nd generation Tuskegee Airmen and 2nd Vice President/Detroit

Volunteerism: law enforcement, medical causes, the Arts

“One must fight the good fight with God’s guidance.”



Cynthia Francis - Over the past 30+ years, Cynthia has worked as a Subcontract Administrator, Commodity Manager, Information Management Specialist, Strategic Project Specialist and Senior Shareholder Account Rep and currently with the Federal Government.   These positions span from the U.S. Air Force and private sector.  While in the Air Force, she supported the Intelligence Unit at Ramstein Germany and Langley Air Force.  She started her career at Randolph Air Force Base within the Manpower Personnel Center as an Information Management Specialist.  The 1980s were spent in various Active duty U.S. Air Force duties.  In 1991, she began various private sector duties which included a tour in Iraq as a Subcontract Administrator and Expeditor in Operation Iraqi Freedom.  She has no roots as she's a product of a Military family.  However, she's now very proud to claim Colorado as home.



Robert E. S. Joseph was born in St. Johns's Antiqua! He went on to be educated in

Business Administration/Criminal Justice at Columbia College in 2008 and attained his MBA

in 2010 at the same college.  

He is the parent of three adult children and the family includes his wonderful dog. 

He enjoys retirement from the US Army & as a Personal Records Specialist in Aurora, Colorado. 

He has also enjoyed a wonderful career with the City of Aurora as a Sr. Animal Care Officer, Veteran Administrator, and a Voucher Examinator.

In his spare time Mr. Joseph enjoys, gardening, exercising, yoga, walking, and volunteering in the community.  



Veronica O White graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Columbia College and began her work in advocacy with non-profit organizations.  Having worked with Grand Design, Inc for over 15-years, Veronica provides a strong knowledge in diversity and inclusivity within our community.


John Reid’s experience and background with successful nonprofits exceeds 30 years. John led Grand Design Inc fundraising and grant writing efforts for more than a decade and is deeply passionate about this Aurora-based “Arts and Cultural Organization”. John has a long track record towards building support for the underserved communities in the area of healthcare and related services. His commitment throughout his lengthy career to serve the most vulnerable populations who suffer from mental health conditions, chronic illness, and complex disease in rural and underserved areas of the United States is proof of his commitment to “People Over Profit”. His professional values have guided his development and are closely aligned with Grand Design Inc’s mission and vision. His beliefs that communities grow stronger when all people, without division, have equal chance towards equity, equality, and full expression and this aligns with Grand Design’s mission to provided inclusive and respectful programs to all.



George Goree, Jr. Is a Recruiting Trainer for Fieldwork Denver located in downtown Denver, Colorado. Fieldwork is a local branch of 15 premier qualitative and clinical research facilities across the U.S. George has been with Fieldwork for 12 years.

George has been a volunteer with Grand Design, Inc for 18 years dedicated to the mission of preserving and keeping alive the performing arts of African Americans while being inclusive of other cultural performing arts.  He also is Co-district Lay Leader for the Mile-High Metro District of United Methodist Churches serving as liaison for the 51 churches in that district.

He studied Accounting at the Community College of Aurora and Metro State University.

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