Meet our Team

At Breaking BarrierZ, we take immense pride in our diverse representation and dedication to our goal of empowering, effecting, and redefining professionalism and what is acceptable in today’s modern workplace and society in general. You may notice that every member has defied the norm to Break BarrierZ in academic, professional, or social settings.

Robert Rowell

Founder & Co-Managing Partner

An accomplished and thoughtful business executive and visionary leader, Robert is known for his results-driven success and commitment. Formerly the President of the Golden State Warriors, Robert is widely recognized for his excellence in leadership and communication in developing a dynamic, leading-edge, and inclusive organization. Named early in his career as a recipient of Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 Award, Rowell has a track record of success and allegiance to diversity and community engagement. As Founder of Breaking BarrierZ, Robert Rowell is dedicated to reshaping the way we train, develop, appreciate, and respect everyone in our workplace. 

Neda Barrie

Founder & Co-Managing Partner

With over 30 years of experience, Neda is a strategic and creative-minded leader who has left an indelible mark in various industries. Neda is currently the faculty chair of the sports and entertainment degree program at the Colangelo College of Business at Grand Canyon University. Prior to her current position, she held key roles such as Senior Executive Vice President of Business Operations and Player Development at the Golden State Warriors and Director of Communication at the Phoenix Suns and Mercury. She is no stranger to strategic marketing and creating, implementing, and executing plans across all areas of the business landscape. Passionate about creating a culture-sensitive workplace that levels the playing field for everyone, Neda continues to break barriers and inspire others in her professional journey.

Cheryl Miller

Member Partner

Cheryl Miller is a true trailblazer who brings unparalleled experience and passion to Breaking BarrierZ. Widely recognized as one of the greatest female athletes of the past century, Cheryl made history as an Olympic Gold Medalist, Naismith Hall of Fame member, and the first female television analyst to call a nationally televised NBA game in 1996. From coaching roles at prestigious institutions like the University of Southern California to her time as a General Manager and Head Coach for the Phoenix Mercury, Cheryl’s impact on the sports world and beyond is truly remarkable.

Venise Wagner

Member Partner

Venise Wanger is not only an accomplished author, journalist, educator, and DEI expert but also boasts a multitude of relevant, acclaimed publications. Currently serving as a Professor in the Journalism Department at San Francisco State University, she is widely recognized in her field. Venise has a 12-year career as a reporter for several California dailies and serves on the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee of the Journalism & Women Symposium. Her extensive experience and recognition make her a marquee contributor to our initiatives.

James Wagstaffe

Member Partner

James (Jim) M. Wagstaffe is a renowned trial attorney and Partner at AMMCG Law. As Founder of The Wagstaffe Group, Jim has authored the nation’s premier litigation guide The Wagstaffe Group Practice: Federal Civil Procedure Before Trial, and California Pretrial Civil Procedure Practice Guide: The Wagstaffe Group, both exclusively available through LexisNexis. Jim is also a seasoned educator, teaching at Stanford University, UC Law San Francisco, San Francisco State, and UC Santa Cruz. Additionally, he serves as the Chair of the Federal Judicial Center Foundation, where he oversees the development and execution of training programs for over 1,500 members of the federal judiciary and court clerk staff annually. Jim’s dedication to education and his extensive legal expertise make him an invaluable asset to our team.

Kelenna Azubuike

Member Partner

Kelenna Azubuike is a seasoned sports professional, television broadcast personality, and former NBA player. Beyond his achievements on the court, Kelenna is passionate about making a positive impact in the community. As a television analyst for the Golden State Warriors and Co-Founder of The Athletes Corner, a non-profit organization, Kelenna works tirelessly to uplift and strengthen others, emphasizing the importance of faith and family. His commitment to helping others and his diverse experiences make him an indispensable member of Breaking BarrierZ.

Kim Barton

Member Partner

Kim Barton is a highly skilled client support and data analytics specialist with over 25 years of proven experience. Having held leadership roles in ticketing operations and client support at TicketMaster and the Golden State Warriors, Kim has a track record of success in creating client solutions and providing effective leadership. Her field expertise and dedication play a pivotal part in ensuring BBZ users have an enjoyable and seamless experience.

Matthew Wagstaffe

Member Partner

Matthew (Matt) Wagstaffe is the Lead Editor, Writer, and Research Analyst for all BBZ training productions. Matt has a talent for curriculum development and content design and brings a wealth of expertise in racial justice, urban history, case law, and rights issues. With experience as a Research Assistant at a number of institutions and education at Yale University and the Yale School of Architecture, Matt is highly skilled in graphic design, including motion graphics. Matt’s distinguished literacy skills and dedication continue to propel BBZ’s leading content. 

Theo Franco Elias

Business Development & Finance Manager

Originally from Brazil, Theo is a savvy finance professional, engaging communicator, and dedicated servant leader. Recognized for his interpersonal skills, Theo oversees a big part of BBZ’s stakeholder interactions and business development activities. With experience in leading multicultural teams, Financial Analysis & Operations, and Corporate Accounting, Theo associates his passion for diversity with his detail-oriented nature to support the BBZ operation in multiple verticals. As the youngest member of our team, Theo brings energy and different perspectives to Breaking BarrierZ.


Contact our Team

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