President: Dr. Brandon Davis

Dr. Brandon Davis serves as Industry Advisor to CABE. He is a member of technical staff at The Aerospace Corporation. He completed his masters and doctorate in materials science and engineering at the University of California Riverside where he was both a Dean’s Distinguished Fellow and GEM Fellow. Dr. Davis also holds a bachelor degree in Mechanical Engineering from Alabama A&M University.

Dr. Davis’ dissertation research focused on the study, fabrication, and characterization of nanotechnologies for near-future applications. Prior to his obtaining his advanced degrees, Dr. Davis worked as a mechanical engineer specializing in propulsion subsystems at AMRDEC under the Department of the Army.

Dr. Davis’ field at The Aerospace Corporation is materials and process engineering with a focus in root cause analysis of electronic components using DPA and NDT of testing methodologies. He also works on the assessments, audits, reviews of test data, process optimizations, and qualification methods for EEEE components.

Vice President: Elmer Thomas, BS, M.S.

Secretary:  Brittney McKenzie

Brittney McKenzie PhotoDr. Brittney McKenzie is a Mechanical Engineer and Consultant at Invetech in San Diego, CA. She was born and raised in Seattle, WA where she attended the University of Washington for her undergraduate and earned her B.S. in Bioengineering. While at the University of Washington, Brittney participated in undergraduate research with the development of point-of-care diagnostic tests, which motivated her to pursue research in graduate school.

Dr. McKenzie earned her Ph.D. and M.S. in Bioengineering at the University of California – Riverside, where she was a graduate student member of the CABE. Her research focused on the development of low-cost devices and analytical chemistry techniques for chemical and biomedical detection applications. During this time, she served on the UC Riverside AWIS Executive Board as Publicity Chair and then went on to serve as President.

In her role as a Mechanical Engineer and Consultant at Invetech, Dr. McKenzie helps clients bring their products for point-of-care diagnostics to realization in the biotechnology and medical device industries. In her free time, she enjoys hobbyist 3D printing and die-cut machine crafting.

Treasurer:  Keilani Conner

Mentorship Chair: Dr. Desiré Whitmore, Ph.D.DesireWhitmore

A Blaxican American and Southern California native, Dr. Desiré Whitmore, aka “Laserchick”, began her education in Community College and holds degrees in Physical Sciences, Chemical Engineering, and Chemical and Material Physics. Her PhD and Postdoctoral research focus was in the development of very fast laser systems to study single molecules vibrating, electrons travelling across the surface of metals, and the fluorescence of semiconducting Quantum Dots. After her postdoc, Desiré has held positions as a science curriculum specialist with Amplify Science, a professor of Laser and Photonics Technology at Irvine Valley College, and is now the Senior Physics Educator in the Teacher Institute at the Exploratorium in San Francisco. Her current work is focused on providing support and professional development to middle and high school science teachers to help them teach through inquiry. She is also a founding board member and Mentorship Advisor of the Council for the Advancement of Black Engineers, a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase the number of culturally responsible Black Engineers with PhD’s, post-doctoral training and professional engineering registrations.


Twitter: @DarthScience

Instagram: @dr.laserchick

LinkedIn: @desirewhitmore

Membership and By-Laws Chair: Karon MylesKaronMyles

Karon Myles is a Mechanical Engineer with the Department of the Navy.  She received her BSME in 1980 from Tuskegee Institute in Tuskegee, AL.   After working at Gulf Oil Refinery, and the Long Beach Naval Shipyard, Ms. Myles decided it was time to work closer to home, where she accepted an engineering position at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Corona Division in Norco, CA.  While employed there, she completed her MS in Quality Assurance from California State University, Dominguez Hills in Carson, CA.  Ms Myles currently serves as a supervisor for the Weapon Systems Assurance branch of the Quality Assessment Division.  In addition to her full time job, Ms. Myles is an active member and officer of several outreach organizations such as Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) scholarship committee, Blacks in Government (BIG), Federally Employed Women (FEW), Council for the Advancement of Black Engineers (CABE), National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), and National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).  She was one of the 2013 recipients of the Blacks in Government Department of Defense Meritorious Service Award.  One of her greatest passions is working to get youth interested in the STEM career fields. Some additional hobbies include robotics and astronomy. 

PhD Board Representative: Leopold Green, PhD

PhD Board Representative: Dante O'Hara, PhDDante OHara

Dante O’Hara is a materials engineer in Washington, D.C. He graduated from the University of California, Riverside with his Ph. D. in 2019. Dante is an organizer, a member of the National Society of Black Physicists, Science for the People, and the Debt Collective. You can find him on Instagram @dante_ohara and Twitter @DanteOHaraPhD.





Legal Representation: Richard Nevins, JD

Academic Advisor: Ernest C. Levister, Jr AB Ch, BS ChE, MD, FACP, FACPMErnest Levister photo

Doctor ‘Ernie’ Levister was born in Harlem, New York. He grew up in the Harlem River Projects, the first low rent, federally subsidized housing community in New York City. At age 5, Levister became fascinated with the nearby landmark McCombs Dam swing bridge connecting Manhattan with the Bronx which inspired him to become an engineer.

His father, a postal employee and youth baseball coach, his mother a nurse and homemaker saw education as a necessary pathway out of poverty and racial-social inequality. Young Levister was held back in the first grade. This was his wakeup call. After negotiating to attend summer school, he became focused on how things work through the application of science and math to solve problems. He became the first Black in the United States to complete the newly created national 3/2 liberal arts engineering program. He graduated with an AB in Chemistry from Lincoln University, the United States’ first degree-granting Historically Black College or University (HBCU). He was the second Black to graduate with an engineering degree from Lafayette College since 1826 and joined the 0.5% of Black engineers in America.

Levister became an instructor at the former Tuskegee Institute School of Engineering and subsequently became a production engineer for the RCA semiconductor division. He graduated from Howard University College of Medicine and completed residence programs in Internal Medicine and Cardiology. He served as a Major in the US Army Medical Corp stationed in Germany and was a Foreign Service Corps Officer in the U.S. State Department domiciled in Lagos Nigeria. He was credential to five West African nations. Levister served as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at George Washington University School of Medicine and Eastern Virginia College of Medicine and practiced medicine in Norfolk, Virginia before moving to Southern California. 

Levister recently retired as a clinical Professor of Internal and Occupational Medicine at the University of California Irvine. He has served as president of the Inland California based J.W. Vines Medical Society, a component of the National Medical Association. For 30 years, he authored a health column for the Riverside, California based Black Voice newspaper. Since 2005 Levister has served as the Vice Chairman of the Council of Advisors for the Bourns College of Engineering at the University of California Riverside. He is co-founder and current advisor to the Council for the Advancement of Black Engineers (CABE).

He has 2 children Clay, a principal at the Mercer Company, a division of Marsh & McLennan and Michelle former Deputy General Counsel at Arbitron Inc. where she was Director of Government Relations and responsible for intellectual property, privacy, and international matters. Currently Michelle is an executive leadership coach and founder of Perceive LLC, a Washington D.C. based advisory and business executive coaching firm. Levister is married to Christine, a former award winning national broadcast journalist, and radio and television news anchor. She is currently an attorney and founder of Endisputes, a mediation and arbitration firm.

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