Eleanor Saunders

Executive Director

Eleanor Saunders moved to Brandon from Dallas, Texas in 2004. She found ECHO and came on board as a volunteer in 2006. By 2007 she was the Center Director. She has worked exclusively in the non-profit sector. Her past employers have included: The Children’s Home, ECHO of Brandon, Junior Achievement, and most recently, Bay Life Church.

Eleanor received a Bachelor of Arts degree from the Moody Bible Institute of Chicago. She has received certifications with the National Parents as Teachers Association as well Volunteer Management through the Points of Light Foundation.

Her community involvement in Brandon has included directing the Brandon Cold Weather Shelter, partnering with Family Promise, volunteering at I Am Hope Café, as well as pioneering the creation of the Seeds of Faith Community Garden. Eleanor is also a graduate of the Leadership Brandon, Class of 2009.

She was recently recognized as the Hometown Hero by the Tampa Tribune (12-14) as well as Fox 13 News (3-15).

Eleanor is excited to continue her service to the community as the Executive Director of ECHO.

She resides with her family in Brandon, Florida.


Joni Damico

Center Director

Joni Damico began her career at the Emergency Care Help Organization as a volunteer in 2004. She was hired as the Center Director in 2009 because, according to Stacey Efaw, CEO, “This is a different type of job. We were looking for someone with supervisory experience but who also had the compassion needed to work with the clients. Joni has a very good work ethic and is great with our volunteers and clients.” Joni is originally from Greensburg, Pennsylvania: just outside of Pittsburgh, and moved with her family to Brandon in 1987.

She and her family have always remained diehard Pittsburgh Steelers fans. Joni has two grown children, Jeremy Damico who works for Verizon & Jessica Damico who is a Hillsborough County FireMedic. As Center Director of ECHO, Joni is responsible for a multitude of tasks, including the daily operations of the center, volunteer coordinating and supervising, assisting clients, and organizing special new fundraising events such as the Phil Stacey benefit concert and the ECHO Charity Monthly Thrift Sale to raise money for our food pantry. Joni’s willingness to do whatever it takes to “get the job done” and her ability to multi-task in a professional manner make her a valuable asset to ECHO.



Sharmaine Burr

Director of Social Services


Sharmaine Burr has worked as ECHO’s Client Center Supervisor since September 2012. In July 2014 Sharmaine was promoted to the Director of Social Services.  Sharmaine has a passion to serve, educated and empower while promoting self-sufficient. Her focus is to help build, strengthen and inspire each client that she encounter. Having grown up in a single parent household Sharmaine empathize, and identify with her client’s needs, wants and desires. Sharmaine brings a passion and love to her job that is evidenced by both her leadership skills, people skills and personal life experiences. In addition to her personal experiences, Sharmaine’s professional experience makes her the perfect fit for ECHO.  Before coming to ECHO Sharmaine worked for five years at Tampa General Hospital as the Coordinator in Trauma ICU.

Sharmaine is a Native of Tampa, FL with strong ties to the community. She attend Tampa Bay Tech High School. Sharmaine graduated from Hillsborough Community College in with her Associates Sciences degree in Counseling/Human Services. She is currently working on her Bachelor of Social Work at St. Leo University. Sharmaine is an active member of Miracle Temple Inst. Church of God In Christ, Sharmaine is also a Certified Signing Agent Notary Public, Certified in CPR and First Aide trained, Certified Volunteer management.

Sharmaine is responsible for overseeing the day to day operations in the Client Center.  She is in charge of supervising numerous Interns and volunteers as well as networking and making relationship within the community. She also oversees and coordinating classes and outreach programs at ECHO such as GED, Healthy Living, Mommy & Me, Career Transition program, financial literacy & Basic computer.




Laura Young

Donor Program Manager

Laura Young joined ECHO in November 2014 as the Donor Program Manager. A second generation Tampa native, she moved to Brandon in 1988 and has volunteered in various roles at several non-profit organizations. Laura received her Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications from the University of South Florida and worked in marketing, sales and volunteer management. She left her career to raise and home-school her children.

In this new position at ECHO, Laura will develop and coordinate the new funding program which includes cultivating donor relations and implementing a plan to attain sustainable funding. This will allow ECHO to offer more services to a larger population in a bigger facility. “The needs of our community continue to grow and we need to grow along with it. I am excited and honored to help take ECHO to the next level,” said Laura.

An avid college football fan, Laura spends her Saturdays cheering for Florida State, Clemson, and Colorado State.  She and her husband Ed have three sons, one in high school at home and two attending college in Colorado and Sarasota.  She enjoys traveling, baking desserts and hiking.


JoAnn Deleanides

Community Relations Manager

 JoAnn Deleanides is the newest addition to the ECHO staff, joining the team in July 2015 as the organizations’ Community Relations Manager.  Originally from Long Island, New York, JoAnn is long time Brandon resident and a graduate from St. Leo University with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. JoAnn has spent a majority of her career working with non-profit organizations. JoAnn brings a wealth of experience in evaluating needs and connecting people to available resources and opportunities.  Her past employers include the Kinship Center at USF, Big Brother Big Sisters of Tampa Bay, American Adoptions of Florida and National Emergency Services Inc. In addition to her volunteer efforts at ECHO, her volunteer experience includes the American Cancer Society, The Children’s Cancer Center, ACS Rock Camp, I Am Hope Café and the Hope Lodge.

JoAnn began her tenure with ECHO as a volunteer prior to her current role as the Community Relations Manager. JoAnn will have the responsibility of developing and maintaining strong working relationships within the community’s diverse populations. The organization will leverage JoAnn’s strengths in planning and coordination of events to serve as point of contact for the organization as she assists the ECHO management team in the hosting of yearly ECHO events.

JoAnn’s passion and unwavering belief in ECHO’s mission, is what motivates her each day to do her very best to help those in need. JoAnn and her husband reside in Seffner, FL. and have raised two daughters, one currently a graduate student at USF the other a Florida State graduate.


Stacey Efaw

Interim Team Member

Stacey Efaw has served as the CEO of the Emergency Care Help Organization (ECHO) since 2002. Stacey has a big heart for the Greater Brandon Area. Having grown up in a military family and living all over the world, Stacey’s parents were stationed at MacDill Air Force Base in the 1980’s. Since then, the majority of Stacey’s life has been spent in the Tampa and Brandon area. Stacey attended Mann Middle School and Armwood High School. Stacey graduated from the University of South Florida in 1993 with her Bachelor’s in Business Management and again in 1998 with a Master’s in Business Administration.

Formerly the CEO of ECHO, Efaw has agreed to stay on-board and assist our current Executive Director with the transition.

An active member of the Greater Brandon community, Stacey is a graduate of Leadership Brandon and a member of the Brandon South Rotary Club. Stacey enjoys being mom to her two daughters, Hannah & Emma.