Governing Board

Jeff Birnbach

Jeff Birnbach
President

Jeff Birnbach is a partner and the managing director of the Sylint Group. A licensed investigator, he’s nationally recognized as an expert in cyber security, incident response and investigations. He’s also active in non-profit activities, and is a member of the board of directors of the Pines of Sarasota, a 240-bed assisted living facility. Previously he served as a director and president of Sarasota Bay Watch, and as a director and Commodore of the Sarasota Yacht Club.

Steve Long

Stephen Long
Vice President, Acting Secretary

Born and raised in Sarasota County, Stephen has always had a passion for his hometown and its fellow residents.  As a past member and president of the Board of Directors for Habitat for Humanity, South Sarasota County, he proudly spent ten years working to promote the need for decent and affordable workforce housing for the people that live and serve in our local area.  Stephen is currently the President for Men’s Ministry at Church of the Redeemer, where he, his wife, and his two sons are members.  He is an avid supporter of law enforcement and hopes to bring attention to the service-driven, selfless actions of the men and women in blue.

Areaka Jewell

Areaka Jewell
Treasurer

Areaka Jewell is currently the accreditation manager at the Sarasota Police Department. She began her career in law enforcement with the Key West Police Department in 2002, where she served in uniformed patrol, special operations, the training unit, accreditation and information services. Areaka retired as a lieutenant in 2018 and then moved her family to Sarasota to start a second career. Additionally, Areaka has over 20 years of volunteer service and community support, including nine years as the President of the Key West Police Department Love Fund.

Dan Kennedy

Dan Kennedy
Director

Dan has been a teacher of Accounting, Marketing, and Computer Coding. He was the Assistant Principal at Scott County High School in Kentucky and later an Assistant Professor at the University of Kentucky. Dan has served as Dean at Sarasota High School as well as Assistant Principal at Riverview High School. He then served as Assistant Principal at Sarasota High school and later as Principal. Dan is the Founder/CEO/Headmaster of Sarasota Military Academy.  Dan serves as Chair of the Sarasota Patriotic Observance Committee, Board Member of the  Dreamers Academy, and Board Member of the Sarasota Prayer Breakfast Board in addition to the Sarasota Police Foundation Board.

Matt McHugh

Matt McHugh
Director

Matt is a native Floridian, born and raised in Sarasota. Being born into a family of educators, Matt spent 20 years in that field. After graduating from the University of South Florida in Tampa with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, he took the position of business manager at a private school where he spent 15 years handling all the financial responsibilities, marketing, PR, HR, and tours for prospective families. After 15 years in the private sector of education, he then co-founded and assisted in the application process and implementation of a public charter school where he spent his next 6 years helping to grow that school in many of the same capacities. In 2019, he left the world of education to pursue a new passion as a yacht broker. Having grown up, worked, and now raising his own children in Sarasota, the safety and protection of his community are important to him. When the opportunity presented itself to join the Sarasota Police Foundation in 2015, he was honored to join. Matt strongly believes in the mission and efforts of the SPF to support the men and women of the Sarasota Police Department. He hopes to see you at our upcoming events and thanks to you for your support. 

Libby Soderberg

Libby Soderberg
Director

Libby Soderberg is an Electrical Engineer and former defense contractor whose work focused on artificial intelligence and facial identification. She has extensive international experience living and traveling in multicultural milieus, particularly in Latin America, Europe, Middle East and Africa. In addition, Libby has more than 25 years of experience leading and serving non-profit organizations. Having been raised in a military family, she has a particular appreciation for the professionalism, dedication and commitment of the men and women who serve our country and our local communities.

Sean Murphy

Sean Murphy
Director

Sean is retired from the Sarasota County Fire Department where he worked as a Firefighter/Paramedic for 20 years. During his career with the FD, Sean was a member of the Special Operations Team assigned to a FEMA Disaster Medical Response Team and a Field Training Officer in addition to being an elected board member for the Sarasota Fire Benevolent Fund. Also during his career, he was a sworn Law Enforcement Officer embedded with the Sarasota Police Department Special Weapons and Tactics Team as an Operator/ Tactical Medic. Sean brings firsthand knowledge and experience to the Sarasota Police Foundation and is committed to assisting the officers of the Sarasota Police Department.