About Us

Veronica Cool

Founder & Managing Director

About Cool and Associates, LLC

After 20 years in corporate banking, and serving as the unofficial Hispanic Liaison, Veronica saw a huge gap in connecting two worlds- She launched Cool & Associates, a management consulting firm to bridge the mainstream world to the Hispanic Market in the United States.  Specializing in an integrated model providing solutions including messaging, training and recruiting.   

She has blended her operational experience with her nonprofit activities to drive engagement and growth. With expertise in commercial banking, lending, financial analysis and sales management, working with Wells Fargo and Bank of America, along with leading and operating the state-wide Maryland Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, a volunteer-run membership based organization that represents the 54,000+ Hispanic businesses in the region- It has been a marriage of her spheres, becoming a cultural connector.

Veronica has travelled internationally on trade missions to foster economic growth and has spoken nationally in various conferences addressing topics such as Diverse Segment Marketing, Minority/WBE, Entrepreneurship, Women in Business and Leadership.  Additionally, she has published several articles on similar topics; and is a columnist for Huffington Post, The Daily Record and Mundo Latino.

She’s received various awards including the Baltimore Sun’s 25 Women To Watch in 2016, Top 100 MBE, Daily Record’s MD Top 100 Women, inducting her into the Circle of Excellence and the US Hispanic Chamber Ultimate Latina Award in the Corporate Sector.  First Lady Michelle Obama recognized Veronica for her commitment to mentoring youth at the National Mentoring Summit. Governor Larry Hogan appointed Cool to serve on the state-wide Governor’s Workforce Investment Board.

She is the founder of the Latino Innovators Pitch, an innovative program to showcase and empower Latino entrepreneurs to scale and grow their businesses profitably and sustainably.  In 2016, she also co-founded the Alliance for Hispanic Commercial Contractors to bridge the gap and foster economic development through education, access and procurements. To continue to serve her community, Veronica founded the Facebook Groups Yo Quiero Trabajo and Emprendedores Exitosos, where she curates content, resources and opportunities for Latino jobseekers and entrepreneurs.

She holds a BS from Kutztown University in Business Administration, and a Master’s of Science in Finance from Loyola University of MD.  A native of Dominican Republic, she is the Past Board Chairman of the MD Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and co-chair of Martin O’Malley’s gubernatorial transition steering committee focusing on MBE and Small Business.  Cool currently serves on the boards of Open Society Institute, Baltimore AthenaPowerlink, Life Lens and is a proud member of the Hispanic Leaders Association, Latino Providers Network, Latinas Think Big and SHIFT Baltimore.

Living northwest of Baltimore, Maryland, she is married to Mr. Cool and is happily overwhelmed by her 15-year-old fashionista black-belt diva and 13-year-old athletic jokester. 

Contact Veronica Cool for Keynotes, Interviews and Consults.

Nelson A. De Leon

Principal Bilingual Talent Acquisition Consultant

Nelson brings over 20 years of recruiting and staffing experience to Cool & Associates LLC. In 1994, he opened the first Latino-owned employment agency in Reading, Pennsylvania to connect the growing Latino labor force in the area to local employers. His expertise lies is the recruitment and placement of bilingual and bicultural professionals for positions in the US and Latin America.

Nelson joined WorleyParsons corporate recruiting team, at the request of the company, a former client to provide full cycle recruiting support to: Finance, Project Controls, Engineering, and Infrastructure & Environments and Quality Control Departments. Additionally, he had the distinction of being the sole and lead recruiter supporting the company’s project in Ecuador, Petro Ecuador Esmeraldas Refinery Revamping.

He has traveled extensively through Latin America and the Caribbean as well as eastern and western Europe. He’s fluent in English, Spanish and Russian.

Nelson is a highly sought expert in the field of recruitment and placement of bilingual/bicultural professionals. He has been recognized by the Governor of Pennsylvania as the first recipient of the Latino Pride Awards for Employment; he served on the Berks County Workforce Investment Board as well as being appointed Commissioner of the Reading Housing Authority. Additionally, he served on the Kutztown University Advisory board. He studied Civil Engineering at the Kiev Institute of Construction and Architecture in Kiev-Ukraine.

Teresa C. Rojas

CISM, Facilitator and Trainer

Teresa Rojas retired from the federal workforce in 2015 after 40 years of service.  During that time she held executive positions in the fields of information security, financial management and human capital development.   She is a high performing operations-management executive with expertise in building and optimizing organizational processes and infrastructure to achieve business results.  As a senior level IT manager, she has a proven record of accomplishment for regulatory compliance, internal controls design and implementation in government financial and information security sectors.  She is highly experienced in managing cross-functional teams with national scope of responsibility to achieve operational improvement productivity gains and cost reduction through improved process performance. Ms. Rojas used her training as an instructor to create and deliver programmatic training to her staff and to national audiences during her federal service.   As a leadership training developer, she now conducts needs assessments and creates curriculum suitable for mid and executive training.  She mentors aspiring managers and provides individualized training and development plans.   She uses her facilitation skills when conducting risk assessments and information technology asset evaluations.  Ms. Rojas received multiple awards while in federal service, including the Social Security Commissioner’s Citation for excellence in the fields of information technology and financial management. This is the highest honorary award conferred to Social Security Employees.  She also received numerous performance awards throughout her career.

Ms. Rojas began her career in Miami where she and her family settled after leaving her native Cuba.  Her knowledge of the developing Hispanic market in the Miami area is extensive.  While living in Miami she participated in the transformation of the original culture into a vibrant Cuban community at first and then it’s progression into a thriving market place for all of South and Central America.  This knowledge of the Hispanic market coupled with her executive experience make her a powerful resource when planning or executing strategic goals.

She has traveled extensively to Europe, Asia, Africa, and throughout the American continent.  She is fluent in Spanish, French, and English.  She obtained her BA in Spanish Literature at Barry College in Miami and her MA in the same subject at Emmanuel College in Boston.   She holds a Certified Information Security Management certificate issued by ISACA.  This is an international organization of over 140,000 information security professionals worldwide which provides credentials, training and development for practitioners, as well as auditing and control standards for the information security industry.

Aurelio “Lee” Rojas

Facilitator and Trainer

Aurelio “Lee” Rojas joined Cool & Associates after retiring from 42 years of federal service in local offices and headquarters.   He held management positions at all levels of this organizations.  He has worked with local government agencies and private entities to bridge divides and create an atmosphere of cooperation in many successful ventures.  He has extensive knowledge in human resources, program/project management, training, and policy development.  He is fluent in Spanish and English.

After receiving a Bachelors of Arts in Political Science, Aurelio began his career in the Miami area.  A native of Cuba, he worked extensively with the burgeoning Hispanic community, interviewing clients and delivering presentations on financial issues.  As an office manager, he reached out to all members of the community he served and made frequent presentations.  He also served on various community boards.

While in the local office, he developed employee improvement plans, increased computer skills through training, and enhanced methodologies to improve performance.  His office was identified as the best office in the area.

In Baltimore he worked with congressional offices, was selected to participate in a leadership program, served in various executive positions, and as a senior advisor.   During this period, he served as a point person on litigation, developed several training initiatives for national distribution, and led multi-component organizations in development and implementation of computer based products and policies.  He received multiple awards for his efforts.

 
 

Amelia Longoria-Rathsack

Professional Development & Training Principal

Amelia Longoria-Rathsack serves as the Director for Training & Development with Cool & Associates LLC where she uses her passion for learning and extensive experience working with government and business leaders at all levels to assess, create, and deliver training solutions designed to support the organizational strategic needs and business plans.  She’s a certified federal interagency coaching network career and life coach.

 

Ms. Longoria-Rathsack volunteers her time as an Executive Advisor for the League of United Latin American Citizens, Federal Training Institute Advisory Board.  She also serves as an Alumni Senior Advisor for human capital solutions on the Baltimore Federal Executive Board’s (FEB) Interagency Human Capital Council (IHCC).

 

Ms. Longoria-Rathsack served as the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) Deputy Associate Commissioner (DAC) for Learning from 2013 -2016, where she focused on assessing, creating, promoting, and delivering innovative training solutions designed to support and meet the learning needs of SSA’s 62,000+ workforce.  

 

Prior to serving as the DAC for Learning, she served as SSA’s first Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Director, where she formulated the agency’s D&I Strategic Plan, D&I Council and oversaw the development and implementation of SSA’s National D&I program. She also served as SSA’s liaison to the Baltimore FEB, and Interim Chair for the IHCC. 

Ms. Longoria-Rathsack played a pivotal role in formulating and implementing SSA’s national recruitment strategy for attracting and retaining a highly skilled, diverse, and agile workforce to meet 21st Century demands as the former National Recruitment Director.  She also served as Deputy Associate Commissioner for SSA’s Office of Civil Rights and Equal Opportunity (OCREO), where she served as alter ego for OCREO’s, Associate Commissioner, and was responsible for overseeing SSA's Civil Rights and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) programs and provided national leadership on a wide range of EEO and D&I initiatives.  

Ms. Longoria-Rathsack’s distinguished public service career spanned 35 years.  She has extensive knowledge of SSA’s programs, operations (corporate & field), human capital management, communications, D&I, and EEO.  She held numerous mid and senior-level positions during her tenure including Executive Officer for SSA’s Chief Human Capital Officer. 

Ms. Longoria-Rathsack received numerous distinguished honor awards during her tenure with SSA including numerous individual and team Commissioner Citations.  In 2004, the National Association of Hispanic Federal Executives awarded her the Professional Achievement Award.  In 2015, she was inducted into the Baltimore Federal Executive Board Hall of Fame for her tireless efforts, advocacy and support of the FEB and the Office of Personnel Management.

Ms. Longoria-Rathsack has served as a Hispanic Hero for Maryland Hispanic Youth Symposium.  She served two terms as National Chairperson for SSA’s Hispanic Affairs Advisory Council.  From 1990-1993, she served as a School Board Trustee for the Santa Maria, TX Independent School District. 

Ms. Longoria-Rathsack is a graduate of SSA’s Senior Executive Service Career Development Program.   She received her bachelor’s degree of science in Social Work from the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Edinburg, Texas. 

 
 

Hannah Meade

Administrative & Project Associate

Hannah Meade is an Administrative & Project Associate who works with Cool & Associates to provide support to businesses, organizations and nonprofits in the areas of Hispanic Strategy and Engagement, Community Outreach, Professional Development and Data Analytics.

As dual major with Spanish and Psychology at Clark University, Hannah was always passionate about Hispanic engagement and outreach. She volunteered with several organizations including Horizons for Homeless Children, Habitat for Humanity, Youth Service Opportunities Project (YSOP), Civic Works, the Casita Project (Proyecto Casita) and many more. She studied abroad in Sevilla, Spain, and has traveled throughout Europe.

Hannah believes that Hispanic engagement is essential to our growth as a nation and is thrilled being able to work directly with the community that she gained extensive knowledge with in her studies in college.

Hannah holds a Bachelor of the Arts with a double major of Spanish and Psychology from Clark University in Worcester, MA.

In her spare time, Hannah enjoys spending time with her family and her two dogs, Millie & Tux.