Meet Our Team of Consultants
Jakob Klaus, MSW, LCSW is the president & founder of Plaid Hound Analytics, LLC, a consultancy based in Columbia, Maryland committed to pursuing community change through systems-based research, strategy, and advocacy. As a consultant to Tenacious Change, Jakob works closely with the founder to teach and train others in the use of the Tenacious Change Approach. He also works on research and data analysis for various clients. For more than a decade Jakob has been working in social service and social change organizations in the DC/Baltimore area. He started Plaid Hound Analytics after concluding his role as a Union Field Representative and Organizer for the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME). At AFSCME he gained a reputation as a highly effective negotiator, litigator, adviser, and recruiter. Previously he served as a Regional VP and Shop Steward in the Maryland Social Services Employees Union. As a social worker his practice area focused on the disability community, as a therapeutic foster care social worker and Adult Protective Services Investigator. Jakob is a strong advocate for community inclusion for people with disabilities.
Carla White is a communication specialist and founder of Serenity Communications, providing communications and graphics services to nonprofits and individuals working to make the world a better place. She consults with Tenacious Change on publication and general website design. Carla created the reflective learning journal for the Getting Started with Tenacious Change video course and other tools and materials for the Tenacious Change Approach. After earning her MPH in 2000 at Columbia University’s School of Public Health, Carla worked with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia. During her tenure at CDC, Carla worked on several national adolescent health initiatives, especially focusing on translating complex scientific information to plain language and helping communities address health disparities. She lives in MidCoast Maine.
Eric Bourgeois is the owner of BRX Research, a full survey market research company based in Rochester, New York. BRX Research works with Tenacious Change to develop survey instruments for evaluation research, including performance and impact evaluations, employee engagement studies, and the Tenacious Change Assessment and Monitoring tool. Eric and BRX provides statistical data analysis and assists with interpretation of the data. BRX Research assists businesses in every industry to get answers and information to make smarter decisions. Eric and BRX Research specialize in survey design and customization, survey execution, data analysis, and satisfaction studies for clients in technology, healthcare, education, advertising, and finance.
Tiffany Willyerd is the owner of House 6 Designs in Silver Spring, Maryland, a company specializing in designing online learning platforms, site and course management, learner support services, custom automations, and website design. Tiffany and House 6 Designs provides design assistance, coaching, and support services for the Tenacious Change Academy. Tiffany’s is an expert consultant for the Thinkific online learning platform which houses the Tenacious Change Academy. Tiffany and House 6 Designs ensure that our courses are ready to receive learners and work seamlessly for us and them.
Metrix Marketing is a full-service marketing communications company in Rochester, NY specializing in market research, development of marketing plans and creative execution in print, electronic, broadcast, out-of-home and guerrilla marketing techniques. Metrix represents clients in higher education health care, financial services, construction, publishing, public health, and human services industries. Metrix expertise includes market research, including surveys, focus groups, creative testing, and other techniques; development of marketing plans and creative execution in print, digital media, social media, broadcast, out-of-home, and guerrilla marketing techniques.
John Riley of Metrix and Tom Klaus of Tenacious Change have partnered on numerous projects in the past. John and his team at Metrix are working with Tenacious Change to create and execute a national marketing plan for the Tenacious Change Approach.
Clemencia Vargas, DDS, PhD is a “retired” dentist, medical sociologist, researcher, and teacher who has fallen in love with teaching Spanish to adult learners. She is a native Spanish speaker from Colombia, South America and shares her love of the language through her virtual language courses at Charlemos con Clemencia. For Tenacious Change she helps write and polish Spanish translations of surveys and materials. She also keeps her data analysis and research skills sharp by assisting with quantitative data analysis. She originally relocated to the Washington, DC area from Phoenix, Arizona to work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Epidemic Intelligence Service. She has also been a researcher for the National Center for Health Statistics and, in 1999, joined the faculty of the University of Maryland School of Dentistry. Clemencia was widely recognized for her work in dental public health and research in oral health disparities among children. In addition to consulting for Tenacious Change, Clemencia teaches conversational Spanish to adult learners through Prince George’s Community College (PGCC) in Maryland. Through her classes at PGCC and her own private group classes, she teaches 80 to 100 students each week. Clemencia makes her home in Laurel, Maryland with her spouse, Tom, and their rescue miniature schnauzer.