Mel MonaMel and Mona Ponder began Business Empowered with a vision for impacting business leaders and individuals to exemplify and advance the Kingdom of God in their workplace and community.

They each have over 20 years experience in owning, managing and operating businesses, and have a keen understanding of the unique challenges and lifestyle demands business people face. They have worked with Fortune 500 companies, achieving national recognition for results. In addition, Mel has 5 years experience in government, which furthers his understanding of today’s business challenges. Most importantly, Mel and Mona each possess over 12 years of ministry leadership. This combination of experience in both ministry and the marketplace makes Mel and Mona Ponder uniquely qualified to provide vision, leadership, and expertise to help Business Empowered Members improve their results and impact their communities.

Mel and Mona are actively involved in church and community, and have served on the Board of Directors for multiple Ministries. They have been married for 23 years and are raising 3 children in Northwest Florida.


SantiSantiago Rodriguez has over 12 years of experience in church staffs where he worked in many capacities including marketing, media, pastoral care, teaching, disciple-making, outreach to the community, led mission teams to several countries, and has a passion to see God’s Kingdom take over cities. He helps Mel and Mona with BE in Destin and is now helping launch the South Walton chapter. Santi has been married to Kim Rodriguez for 8 years and are raising 3 children in South Walton.