Ezekiel Bonillas

Ezekiel has a versatile entrepreneurial background in banking, consulting and economic development. He founded his first business at the age of 16 and used its proceeds to fund his education. Ezekiel attended CSU San Bernardino, where he earned an MBA in Entrepreneurial Management along with two Bachelor degrees: Entrepreneurship and Spanish. While completing graduate school, Ezekiel worked at a community bank in Palm Desert, California in several roles that included expanding the bank's branch footprint as Assistant Vice President and special projects for the Board. As he worked his way up, Ezekiel grew banking portfolios with diverse high net worth clientele and commercial clients. He helped many businesses obtain financing to expand and grow their companies while providing keen insight as a business owner.

During the economic downturn of 2008-09, Ezekiel founded Prospera Business Consulting to advise small businesses owners on strategizing and navigating through the recession. He worked with clients in the US, Mexico and France across multiple industries on startup, acquisitions and expansions. He joined the Coachella Valley Economic Partnership as VP of Entrepreneurship and director of the Small Business Development Center. He and his team developed innovative programming to serve minority-owned enterprises to increase revenues and create jobs. Ezekiel and his team were recognized as a "Best Practice" and "Best ROI" by the US Small Business Administration. He was recognized by Palm Springs Life magazine as a "Forty under Forty" awardee in 2014.

The 29 Palms Band of Mission Indians approached Ezekiel to lead and diversify their economic holdings and operations. As Director of Economic Development, Ezekiel led multi-million dollar efforts to improve operational efficiencies and increase revenues of tribal gaming enterprises, invest in new business ventures, as well as lead the acquisition, consolidation and development of privately-held and tribally-owned real estate holdings. In addition, he spearheaded efforts with external stakeholders; state, national and international dignitaries to advance the tribes economic development efforts ensuring diversification, sustainability and stakeholder collaboration.

Being of service to others and the community is engrained in Ezekiel much like entrepreneurship. He has served on the boards of About Families Inc., Mexican-American Chamber of Commerce, Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship, CV Link Advisory Board, Enterprise Funding Corporation and many more. Ezekiel played an integral part on forming the Greater Coachella Valley Chamber of Commerce—the only US chamber to include two native-American tribes as part of its governing membership. Ezekiel has also volunteered for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Desert and Leadership Coachella Valley while mentoring young adults on launching and advancing their careers. He helped grow the Coachella Valley Women's business center to serve women and people of limited economic means on starting and growing a business as a way of empowering them to thrive economically and contribute to their community's ecosystem.

Ezekiel lives in Southern California with his wife, Monica, and their sons, Joaquin and Julian. He enjoys his role as a father and being an integral part of his children's lives. Ezekiel is an avid hiker and outdoor enthusiast; a life-long learner and reader; a travel enthusiast; and cherishes the company of cheerful friends and family.