Founder and President
Julie Weintraub is originally from England and moved here in 1978 with her family. Her mother is English and her father East Indian. Experiencing firsthand what it is like to go through times of hardship and struggles, Julie has always made time to help those less fortunate around her. Julie was raised in a home with parents that always gave back and helped others in need. Her mother even moved a man who was homeless into their home and rehabilitating him until he became a homeowner himself. Residing in Florida since 1987 Julie has had a long history in our area of Philanthropy and Entrepreneurship. Currently, Julie is Vice President of one of the most successful Family owned Jewelry companies in the Southeast, Gold & Diamond Source with her husband Steve. In 2010, Julie founded Julie Weintraub’s Hands Across The Bay which has quickly become one of our areas most notable and respected charitable organizations helping countless families in need.
Dee graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2013 with a bachelor of science in Event Management. Her original intent for her career was to plan large corporate meetings. However, with her parents constant giving spirits and involvement with local charities, her heart quickly took over and turned her towards non-profit fundraising events. Starting her career at Hands Across the Bay was an easy choice for Dee. Her dad danced in Tampa Bay's Dancing with the Stars and introduced her to the organization. She instantly fell in love and was thrilled when the opportunity arose for her to join the team.
Violence Prevention Advocate and Outreach Coordinator
In January of 2012, Melissa Dohme’s high school ex-boyfriend brutally attacked her by stabbing her 32 times in the neck, face, arms, and hands in an attempt to take her life. It is a true miracle that she is alive today after flat-lining four times and suffering a stroke from a massive amount of blood loss. Following that horrific night, Melissa felt the conviction to become an advocate and speak out against domestic violence. She has shared her story with thousands speaking at various domestic violence events, high schools, and colleges. Melissa has been featured in national and international magazines and appeared on national televisions shows including 48 HOURS: Live to Tell, Inside Edition, GMA, and many more. Melissa was St. Petersburg College’s Clearwater Student of the Year and the commencement speaker at graduation for her Associates in Arts degree in 2012. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Applied Science in Business Management & Organizational Leadership and proudly works for Hands Across the Bay as the Outreach Coordinator and Violence Prevention Advocate. Melissa won WEDU's 2016 Be More Outspoken: Voice of Tampa Bay Award in recognition of advocacy in the community. She feels that everyday that she walks into work to help others, she is fulfilling her life purpose of why she was saved that horrific night!
Melissa Dohme's attacker was sentence to LIFE IN PRISON with no chance of parole on October 21, 2013. Hands Across the Bay was there to support Melissa as she recalled all she went through and pleaded for her abuser to receive a life sentence. To read Melissa's Victim Impact Statement, please click here.