Director & Chairman of the Board
Ibn-Hashim Bakari has spent several years in law enforcement as a juvenile correctional officer, Police Action Control Concepts (PACC) Training Instructor, Anger Management & Domestic Violence Instructor and currently a DOT Inspector.
A Proud member of the Rhode Island Minority Police Association (RIMPA) & Associate member of the National Association of Black Law Enforcement Officers Inc. (NABLEO) over the last 20 years.
Ibn founded Lights & Sirens International (LSI) in 2009 hosting an International basketball tournament for law enforcement and public safety personnel with the mission in addressing the mental health of public safety personal and helping those less fortunate in the Dominican Republic with essential needs.
In 2020 LSI started to remedy the long-standing damaged relationship between law enforcement and the minority community with a Bocce Ball Community Outreach Program. The overall project design of interaction is community-based, increases accountability for all, acknowledges the impacts of attitudes and egos towards individuals and generates greater confidence in everyone's de-escalation skills. This format has improved communication, relationships, and leadership for individuals in crisis and ensures population safety.
"Our programs encourage the youth of our community and public safety personnel to be active participants in understanding others' perspectives through meaningful conversations. We discuss important topics that we view as a driver to understanding and articulating our perspectives and listening to and learning the perspective of others. We have conversations on relevant issues such as Accountability, Ego, Implicit Bias, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Conflict Resolution, and Social Responsibility. While the path to progress is neither clear nor straightforward, our future depends on our actions today. "
Ibn-Hashim also serves on the University of Rhode Island Athletic Advisory Board as a policy review board for all athletic programs. Advises and reviews fiscal, educational, and social policies affecting all athletic programs. Makes recommendations regarding the level of competition and nature of intercollegiate schedules. Serves as liaison to President on issues regarding championships and tournaments during final examination period.
Wilda Gutierrez, is a passionate woman, a devoted daughter, caregiver, mother of two wonderful children, sister, co-worker, and community leader. Born in the Dominican Republic; at the age of eleven she left her beloved country to move to the USA with her family, full of hopes and dreams.
She received her primary education in the New York City school system and earned her college education from the State University of New York-Morrisville. She also has a certification from the National Parent Leadership Institute and is currently working on continuing her education. For the last 21 years she has been working at Fay Law Associates as a paralegal and Spanish interpreter.
The joy of being a mother led her to engage in the community as a volunteer, wanting to contribute to our society with not just words but also actions. She has actively served as a volunteer in many local community organizations. Public service and community involvement have always been a major aspect of her life.
Jianny joined Lights and Sirens International as a volunteer in 2016, later joining the Board of Directors in 2018. Being a Dominican-American from Providence, he has a strong connection to the communities we serve.
Outside of his responsibilities at LSI, Jianny works in the investment management industry. He is currently a Portfolio Associate at Income Research + Management in Boston.
At LSI, Jianny oversees our use of technology. In addition to leading our technology efforts, Jianny lends his background in financial services to provide guidance on accounting, budgeting, and grant writing.
“Giving back and helping others have always been important to me. I want to inspire others to do the same and I think I can do that by setting an example.” - Jianny
Born and raised in Rhode Island, Chris attended Lincoln Central Elementary School and Lincoln Jr./Sr. High School in Lincoln RI. Chris furthered his education at the Community College of Rhode Island and The University of Rhode Island Providence campus. Chris has earned several insurance designations including Property Claims Law Specialist, Associate in Claims and Associate in Insurance Services.
Chris is a Sr. Complex Claim Director with the American International Group. He has worked as a claim professional for over 30 years helping families and businesses recover from loss of property and/or income. He has handled claims both at home in the United States and Internationally. Currently, Chris handles large commercial property and economic loss claims for the Major Loss Unit of American International Group.
Chris was appointed to the Lights and Sirens International Board of Directors in 2022. He has been a participant and co contributor of the Lights and Sirens summer bocce clinics since its creation in 2020.
Charles "chuck" watson
Charles A. Watson is from Hammond, Louisiana. He moved to Cranston, Rhode Island in his early teens, where he attended and graduated from Cranston High School East in 1983. After high school in 1983, he was recruited to the University of Rhode Island, where he was offered a scholarship to play football at the University, playing on the 1984 and 1985 back-to-back Yankee Conference Championship teams.
Charles graduated in 1993 with a B.S. Degree in Family Studies and a M.A. Degree in Adult Education with an Education Specialization in 2021. While at URI, Charles was heavily involved in student organizations, and elected to the executive board of Uhuru Sasa, and was a member of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity, the Cape Verdean Student Association (CVSA), the Latin American Student Association (LASA) and the Black Student Leadership Group (BSLG).
Charles is an active member of the College of Engineering DE&I Advisory Board, The Partnership, INC., Community, Equity and Diversity (CED) College Diversity Professionals and Partners, National Association of Multicultural Engineering Program Advocates (NAMEPA) and serves as Region A Chair, National Advisory Council for the Minorities in Engineering (NACME). He is the University representative member of the National GEM Consortium (GEM gradlab), National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), Society of Advancing Chicano/Hispanic & Native Americans in Science (SACNAS), 50K Coalition, Cox Communications Charities Executive Board, the Northeast Louis Stoke Alliance for Minority Participation Executive Board (NELSAMP), Lights & Sirens International Board of Directors and has served on the URI Alumni Executive Board and Institutional Review Board (IRB), Rhode Island Community Food Bank Executive Board and the YMCA Executive Board Cranston, RI.
For 20 years plus Charles has been the senior coordinator for the URI’s NSF Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation initiative so that thousands of additional underrepresented minority students in STEM can receive significant financial and academic support. He is and has been diversity lead on more than $48 million in National Science Foundation (NSF) awards that supports the broader impact for underrepresented minority research efforts, including a $19 million NSF grant funded Rhode Island Consortium for Coastal Ecology Assessment, Innovation, and Modeling (RI C-AIM) and serves as lead for the grants Diversity Action Committee (DAC). His open, candid, and personal discussion of the needs of underrepresented minority students pursuing engineering and science and the personal responsibility that goes with it has been embraced by the University of Rhodes Islands leadership.