Greater Omaha Chamber’s Young Professionals Announce 2022 Change Makers

The Greater Omaha Chamber Young Professionals ( has recognized their 2022 Change Makers, sponsored by the University of Nebraska at Omaha Office of Graduate Studies.

“Omaha’s success is spurred on by young professionals who strive to make a difference for their communities,” said Ana Lopez Shalla, senior director, workforce development for the Greater Omaha Chamber. “These Change Makers have all done something extraordinary and we are proud to recognize them here. The 2022 Change Makers truly are an inspiration and an example to others.”

The Change Makers have been carefully selected for their commitment to the success of their community, their friends and family, and themselves by breaking down barriers and overcoming challenges through innovative and exemplary acts.

This year’s Change Makers include:

Daniela Rojas Florez, assistant dean of student success, College of Saint Mary

DaShawn McGary, B.S.B.A, co-founder and director, Divine Living

Leah Whitney Chavez, executive director and founder, World Speaks Omaha

Theodore W. Johnson, MPA, instructor – Aviation Institute, University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO)

Daniela Rojas Florez was born in Bogota, Colombia. She moved to Omaha in 2007. Daniela graduated from College of Saint Mary with a double major in art and theology, as well as a medical interpreting certificate. She attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where she completed her master’s in higher education administration in the fall of 2020. Daniela now serves as assistant dean for student success at College of Saint Mary.

DaShawn McGary is a native of Omaha and recent graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, conferred with a finance emphasis. He is a co-founder and director of Divine Living, a home and community services-based agency through Medicaid, that provides assistance to community members with developmental disabilities.

Leah Whitney Chavez is the executive director and founder of World Speaks Omaha, a nonprofit that removes barriers from our community by providing language access services and community education courses. With a bachelor’s degree in foreign language and literature with a concentration in Spanish, she is bilingual and from an early age had an appreciation of Spanish language and Latin culture.

Theodore W. Johnson, MPA, is an instructor within the Aviation Institute at UNO who is pursuing his doctorate in public administration. He is a pracademic educator and DEI stalwart engaged in the integral mission of moving the equity needle in public and private sector entities. He has only been in Omaha 18 months and is already creating lasting change to broaden the horizons of racial and gender minorities within the UNO and Omaha communities pertaining to aviation/aerospace and other STEM fields.

The mission of the Greater Omaha Chamber is to champion a thriving business community and a prosperous region through visionary leadership and collaboration. The organization is made up of over 3,000 members working to make Omaha a vibrant place to do business, work, and live. To learn more, visit