The Board of Directors offer significant professional experience, are committed to educational opportunities, and have extensive personal and professional networks that are useful in helping secure program partnerships and philanthropic funding. Board members participate fully in quarterly board meetings, fundraise on behalf of the organization, attend at least one programmatic event, stay connected to CollegeSpring through quarterly one-on-one meetings with the CEO, and commit to making an annual donation.

Tom Friel, National Board Chair

Retired Chairman and CEO of Heidrick & Struggles International Inc.

Tom Friel retired as chairman and CEO of Heidrick & Struggles International Inc. in 2007. Tom joined Heidrick & Struggles in 1979 and played an important role in developing the firm’s leadership position in key markets. He was co-founder and then later assumed the responsibility of managing the firm’s technology practice, which he led from 1987 to 1995. From 1992 to 1999, Tom undertook the additional role of managing partner, Asia Pacific. From 1999 through 2001, he served as president of Heidrick & Struggles Ventures, the firm’s division responsible for all future initiatives, new business strategies, investments and alliances. He served as chairman and CEO from 2003 to 2006, prior to assuming the role of chairman. Tom is a graduate of Purdue University, where he majored in industrial engineering. He also holds a master’s degree from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and served on the Business School Advisory Council. In addition to serving as Board Chair of CollegeSpring, Tom is currently serving as a Board Member of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation and the Computer History Museum, and is a member of the advisory boards of Docusign Corp., Pomello and the Seraph Group. 

Julissa Arce, Board Member

Writer, Immigration Rights Activist

Julissa Arce is a writer and an immigration rights activist. She is the former Director of Public Affairs at Define American, a media organization that uses the power of story to change culture around immigration and citizenship. Prior to joining Define American, she built a successful career on Wall Street working at Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch and had seemingly achieved the American Dream, and yet she was not part of what defined American.

Julissa immigrated to America from Mexico at the age of 11 and was undocumented for almost 15 years, including some of her years rising to prominence on Wall Street. In order to help other young people in similar circumstances, Julissa co-founded the Ascend Educational Fund, a scholarship program for immigrant students, regardless of their immigration status. She was officially sworn in as an American citizen in August of 2014.

Avi Dorfman, Board Member

Vice President & Head of New Ventures, The D.E. Shaw Group

Avi Dorfman is Vice President & Head of New Ventures at The D. E. Shaw Group, a global investment, research and technology development firm with over $45 billion under management. He previously served as a Vice President at Accretive, a venture capital firm with $500 million under management dedicated to building technology companies from the ground up, most notably Fandango and Accretive Health. In 2012, he co-founded Compass, a real estate technology platform that has since gone national and is valued at close to $2 billion. He began his career in the corporate finance and strategy practice at McKinsey & Company, and also spent summers in the investment banking division at Lehman Brothers and on the private investments team at Access Industries. In 2017, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio appointed Avi to his Technology Leadership Advisory Council. Prior to his national board appointment, Avi served as the founding chair of CollegeSpring’s New York regional board for two years, through which he was integral to the organization’s rapid growth on the east coast. He received a B.A. with first class honors from McGill University and an Masters in international finance and economic policy from Columbia University.

Joel Jones, Board Member

Vice President of Sales Planning & Operations, Facebook

Joel joined Facebook in 2012 and leads the global Sales Planning & Operations team, which scales Facebook’s business through planning, enablement, and operations. Prior to Facebook, Joel worked at Yahoo! for five years with roles leading the Americas Ad Marketplaces team, as the Chief of Staff to the CEO, and in the Corporate Strategy group. Prior to that, Joel spent seven years with McKinsey & Company leading digital media business growth and go-to-market strategy in high tech.

Joel also serves as Chair of CollegeSpring’s Bay Area board of directors. He has an M.S. in Applied Physics from Caltech and a B.S.E. in Engineering Physics from the University of Michigan, and currently resides in San Jose, CA.

Larry Kubal, Board Member

Founder, Labrador Ventures; Managing Partner, Labrador Ventures III, IV and V

Mr. Kubal has invested in seed and early stage information technology companies for the last 23 years. He is a founder of Labrador Ventures and serves as a managing partner of Labrador Ventures III, IV and V. Labrador was among the founding investors in Pandora Media (NYSE:P) where Mr. Kubal served on the board for seven years up to the IPO. In Addition, Mr. Kubal currently serves as the Labrador representative with portfolio companies Altierre, PlayPhone, and RocketFuel.

In addition to his investment experience, Mr. Kubal was a management consultant with Booz, Allen & Hamilton, a global strategy and technology consulting firm. Prior to consulting, Mr. Kubal worked extensively in computerized database publishing for McGraw-Hill Publications Company and for the Academy for Educational Development. Mr. Kubal was also a founding executive with a venture-backed PC software company, Avalanche Technologies, ultimately acquired by Microsoft.

Mr. Kubal received his undergraduate degree from Duke University (1974), cum laude with departmental distinction, and his MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business (1982).

Juanita Lott, Board Member

Entrepreneur & Tech Executive

Juanita Lott is the founder and former chair and CEO of Bridgestream Software, an enterprise software company that was sold to Oracle in 2007. Gartner recognized Bridgestream as one of the ‘cool vendors in security and privacy’, and Burton Group recognized Ms. Lott as ‘a pioneer’ in role based access management solutions.

Ms. Lott has extensive operational expertise in global companies, particularly those undergoing rapid growth. She served as EVP and CHRO of Epicor Software where she focused on talent, leadership development, organizational and globalization strategies for this privately held ERP software business. Ms. Lott also served as a member of Sybase’s executive team as the organization successfully transitioned from a pre-IPO company to over $1B in revenue.

Ms. Lott is an Investment Partner in the Portfolia Investment Fund and a former member of the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Executives where she received the Forum’s Trailblazer Award in 2001, 2003 and 2004. She is a trustee alumna of Springboard Enterprises, a venture catalyst organization that provides support to women led businesses.Ms. Lott continues to work as an advisor and mentor to women entrepreneurs and is currently on the advisory board of Talent Sonar Software. She has been a presenter at Stanford’s MBA program on entrepreneurship from the perspective of women and is a contributor to

Ms. Lott received her Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Arts from the University of California and her Master’s Degree from Mills College

Paul Martino, Board Member 

Managing Director, Bullpen Capital

Paul is Managing Director of Bullpen Capital. He is the founder of four companies including Ahpah Software (a computer security firm acquired by InterTrust), Tribe (one of the world’s first social networks), and Aggregate Knowledge (a big data advertising targeting and attribution company acquired in 2014 for $150 million). Paul’s early online gaming innovations in multi-player user experience, from almost 20 years ago, are the inspiration for several of the modern social gaming offerings. He is the holder of over a dozen core patents covering social networking and big data. Prior to forming Bullpen, he was an active angel investor and personally invested in the first rounds of Zynga, TubeMogul, Udemy, and PayNearMe. Paul founded Bullpen in 2010 and has led several of its key investments. He currently sits on the board of FanDuel, the leader in daily fantasy sports. Other key Bullpen investments include Life 360, Ipsy, Citrus Data, Namely, and Betable. Paul holds a BS in Mathematics from Lehigh University and a Masters in Computer Science from Princeton University.

Garrett Neiman, Board Member

Co-Founder & Former CEO, CollegeSpring

Garrett is the co-founder and former CEO of CollegeSpring. Garrett incubated CollegeSpring at Stanford University, where he majored in Economics and realized that his experience could help other students prepare for college. During his time at Stanford, Garrett interned at the U.S. Department of Education, conducted research with America’s most prominent education economist, served as an advisor to Google’s Education Applications Team, and co-directed Stanford Dance Marathon, the largest student-led philanthropic event in the Bay Area. He also served as a voting member of Stanford’s Board of Trustees and Public Service Student Advisory Board and Co-Chair of the Senior Gift Committee, where he led an effort that doubled the previous class gift record. Garrett has been honored as an East Palo Alto Social Venture Fellow, Stanford Nonprofits Board Fellow, Public Service Leadership Fellow, and Young People For Fellow. His work has been profiled in the New York Times, BusinessWeek, the Orange County Register, the Stanford Daily, and the USC Trojan, and he has served as an invited speaker at events hosted by The College Board, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and Stanford University, among others.

Todd Penner, Board Member

Team Lead, College Preparation & Completion, Michael & Susan Dell Foundation

Todd oversees the U.S. Education team’s College Preparation & Completion portfolio, which empowers more high-need students to graduate from high school college-ready, enroll in college, and obtain a bachelor’s degree.

Prior to joining the foundation in May 2008, Todd spent 13 years at Dell Inc. in various marketing and support positions, his last being Director of Worldwide e-Support. Before Dell, he worked with Exxon Chemical Company and Deloitte Haskins & Sells. Todd has a bachelor’s in business administration in accounting from the University of Texas at Austin and a master’s of business administration in finance from the University of Michigan. Todd is currently the Treasurer at Girlstart, an Austin, Texas-based nonprofit that empowers girls in science, technology, engineering and math, and serves on the board of CollegeSpring, a San Francisco-based nonprofit that helps students from low-income backgrounds boost SAT scores, navigate college admissions and financial aid, and confidently pursue college degrees.

Mindy Rogers, Treasurer and Secretary

Community Volunteer

Mindy Rogers began her career at Bain & Company. She later joined Wells Fargo Bank as Vice President, where she held a variety of managerial positions in banking operations including General Manager of Northern California check processing, a 24/7 operation with over 300 employees and an $11 million budget. After leaving Wells Fargo, she became a consultant to the bank on a range of issues, including merger integration support, cost reduction, operational management, marketing, and new product launches. Mindy is very involved in her community. At Sacred Heart Preparatory Atherton, Mindy served in a variety of volunteer capacities, including for seven years as a member of the Board of Trustees. For four years, she chaired the Board, where she led a strategic planning process, worked with the administration to implement numerous key initiatives and launch a $95 million capital campaign, led a search for a new head of school, and worked to improve governance and financial reporting. Currently, she is a Board Member for Stanford New Schools-a network of charter schools in East Palo Alto run by the Stanford School of Education-and an active volunteer with Project Read, the Boys and Girls’ Club of the Peninsula, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and Stanford University. Mindy earned her B.A. in Economics, with Honors and Distinction, and her M.B.A. from Stanford University. She is married to Jesse Rogers, with three children.

Ralph Sutton, Board Member

Validity Capital Partners, LLC

A former trial attorney with over 17 years of experience litigating cases, Ralph has deep experience in litigation funding.

Before joining Validity Capital Partners, he was the chief investment officer at Bentham IMF, the US subsidiary of the Australian litigation funding pioneer, where he assisted the company in its investment in more than 40 cases in the US, creating a US investment portfolio with claims valued at approximately $1.5 billion. He also championed Bentham’s focus on fairness and sustainability in the litigation funding industry, and has been a fierce advocate for increased access to civil justice. In 2016, he led the company in its decision to provide a significant capital contribution to the UC Irvine School of Law’s new national Civil Justice Research Institute, which will study factors that limit access to America’s court system.

Ralph also helped found Credit Suisse’s Litigation Risk Strategies group, introducing innovative third-party funding to a traditional Wall Street investment bank. He graduated from Columbia College with honors in English Literature, and received his J.D. from the New York University School of Law. After graduating from NYU, Ralph served as a law clerk to US District Court Judge G. Thomas Eisele for two years.

Gene Sykes, Regional Board Chair

Managing Director, Goldman Sachs

Gene Sykes is Co-Head of Global Mergers & Acquisitions and Co-Chairman of the Global Technology, Media and Telecom Group. Previously, he was Co-Chairman of Global Mergers & Acquisitions. Mr. Sykes is a member of the Management Committee and the Firmwide Client and Business Standards Committee. He joined the Mergers & Acquisitions Department in New York in 1984 and moved to Los Angeles in 1987. He became a Partner in 1992. Mr. Sykes is a trustee of the California Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, a board member of Common Sense Media, a member of the Advisory Council of the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, a member of the Stanford University Board of Trustees, and a trustee of St. Matthew’s Parish School. He earned an MBA from Stanford University in 1984 and an AB from Harvard University in 1980. 

Ambassador Frank Baxter, Regional Board Member

Retired CEO and Chairman, Jefferies & Company

Frank Baxter graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a BA degree in economies with honors in 1961. Before college he enlisted in the Air Force for four years. After college he worked at the Bank of California, San Francisco. In 1963 he joined J.S. Strauss and Company, San Francisco, which then was a major third market firm.

From 1974 until 2002 he was employed by Jefferies and Company, a global investment bank specializing in small and mid-cap companies. In 1984, he moved to London to start and act as Managing Director of Jefferies International. In 1987 he became CEO of Jefferies. That same year he started the Investment Technology Group. He is now Chairman Emeritus of the firm. He is a former director of the NASD and served as Chairman of the committee. He subsequently served on the Board of NASDAQ as a member of the Executive Committee and Chairman of the CEO search committee. He is also a former director of the Securities Industry Association. He served as the United States Ambassador to Uruguay under George W. Bush from 2006 to 2009.

Mr. Baxter’s civic activities include: Chairman of the Board of Alliance for College-Ready Public Schools, an organization dedicated to starting a number of charter schools in Los Angeles; Chairman of the Board of After-School All Stars, an after-school program for middle-school children; Board Member, California Institute of the Arts; Member, Governor Schwarzenegger’s Commission for Jobs and Economic Growth; Vice Chairman of the Board of the Los Angeles Opera, whose budget has grown 2 1/2 times during his tenure as President; Chairman of the Executive Committee, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, which is undergoing a major building campaign; Trustee, University of California Berkeley Foundation; and Trustee, I Have A Dream Foundation, LA Chapter. 

Jason Collins, Regional Board Member

Retired NBA Player, NBA Cares Ambassador

Jason Collins is a retired American professional basketball player of the National Basketball Association (NBA).

Collins attended Stanford University, where he was an All-American in the 2000-2001 season. Upon graduating with a B.A. from Stanford, Collins was selected in the first round of the 2001 NBA Draft with the 18th overall pick. A 13-year veteran, Collins played center for six teams including New Jersey, Memphis, Minnesota, Atlanta, Boston, Washington and, most recently, the Brooklyn Nets (formerly the New Jersey Nets). While in the league, Collins’ teams earned 10 trips to the playoffs, including 2 NBA Finals appearances.

After the 2012-13 NBA season concluded, Collins publicly came out as gay in a cover story for Sports Illustrated, becoming the first male active player in any of the four major American professional sports to announce that he is gay. President Obama expressed his gratitude to Collins for his courageous announcement and said he “couldn’t be prouder” of Collins, recognizing this as a point of progress for the LGBT community, and one more step in America’s goal to treat everyone fairly and with respect. Collins has traveled the country with the mission of empowering people to live their lives as their true selves, and has become an active member of numerous charities, foundations and organizations. In 2013, GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, honored Collins with the Courage Award at the GLSEN Respect Awards. In 2014, Logo TV honored Collins with its inaugural Trailblazer Award. Also in 2014, the Matthew Shepard Foundation honored Collins with its Making a Difference Award at its annual Honors Gala. In April 2014, Collins was featured on the cover of Time Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People in the World.” In January of 2015, the National Civil Rights Museum honored Collins with a Sports Legacy Award.

Jason is an Ambassador for the NBA Cares— spreading goodwill on behalf of the NBA with its players, community and corporate partners. He also served on President Obama’s Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition, which worked to motivate Americans to adopt a healthy lifestyle via physical activity and nutrition. Collins resides in Los Angeles, California.

Shomik Dutta, Regional Board Member

Founding Partner, Higher Ground Labs

Shomik has built a diverse career in politics, renewable energy, and finance. He is a Founding Partner at Higher Ground Labs, a seed-stage accelerator focused on finding and supporting better political technology for progressive campaigns. He is a veteran of several Democratic campaigns and served as the Mid-Atlantic Finance Director for the ’08 Obama Campaign. Shomik worked in the Obama White House as special assistant to the White House Counsel and then served as an Advisor to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski. Shomik later worked on President Obama’s re-election campaign as a fundraiser. In 2013, Shomik co-founded a private equity firm focused on renewable energy and infrastructure. He oversaw the planning, financing, and development of two utility-scale solar plants in Asia and in Sub Saharan Africa. Shomik holds a B.A. from Williams College and a M.B.A from The Wharton School of University of Pennsylvania. Shomik recently served as the Chairman of the Board of RePublic Schools, a Charter Management Organization devoted to providing high-quality education to low-income students in the Deep South. 

Sarah Ketterer, Regional Board Member

CEO, Causeway Capital

Ms. Ketterer is the chief executive officer of Causeway, portfolio manager for the firm’s fundamental and absolute returns strategies, and is responsible for investment research across all sectors. Ms. Ketterer is a member of Causeway’s operating committee. She co- founded the firm in June 2001. From November 1996 to June 2001, Ms. Ketterer worked for the Hotchkis and Wiley division of Merrill Lynch Investment Managers (“HW-MLIM”). At HW-MLIM, she was a managing director and co- head of the firm’s HW-MLIM International and Global Value team. From 1990 to 1996, Ms. Ketterer was a portfolio manager at Hotchkis and Wiley, where she co-founded the international equity product. Ms. Ketterer is currently a director of the Music Center Foundation, the Los Angeles World Affairs Council, and the Broad Stage. Ms. Ketterer has a BA in Economics and Political Science from Stanford University and an MBA from the Amos Tuck School, Dartmouth College. 

John Kissick, Regional Board Member

Retired Co-Founder and Senior Partner, Ares Management

Mr. John H. Kissick a Co-Founder and retired Senior Partner at Ares Private Equity Group, Ares Management GP LLC, and Ares Capital Corporation. He is Limited Partner of Peak View Partners, LLC. He also served at Ares Corporate Opportunities Fund I, L.P.; Ares Corporate Opportunities Fund II, L.P. and Ares Corporate Opportunities Fund III, L.P. Prior to joining Ares in 1997, he co-founded Apollo Global Management, LLC in 1990 and served as its Principal. He oversaw and led the capital markets activities of Apollo Management, particularly focusing on high yield bonds, leveraged loans, distressed debt and other fixed income assets. Prior to 1990, Mr. Kissick served as a Senior Executive Vice President at Drexel Burnham Lambert Inc., where he began in 1975, eventually heading its Corporate Finance Department. Mr. Kissick serves on the Board of Directors of City Ventures LLC since April 2013.

He serves on the boards of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, the Stanford University Athletic Department and its Graduate School of Education, and L.A.’s Promise. He served as Director of Converse, Inc. since 1994; Quality Distribution Inc. since June 1998; and Quality Distribution LLC since May 2002. He served as Director of Florsheim, Inc. from 1994 to August 2002. Mr. Kissick graduated from Yale University with a B.A. in Economics and with highest honors from the Stanford Business School with a M.B.A. in Finance. 

Scott McConnell, Regional Board Member

Principal, Ares Relationship Management Group

Scott is a Principal and Relationship Manager for North America in the Ares Relationship Management Group. Prior to joining Ares in 2007, Mr. McConnell was a Manager in the Centralized Interest Rate Risk Group at IndyMac Bancorp, Inc. Previously, Mr. McConnell was a Senior Associate in the Audit practice at KPMG, LLP, where he focused on the banking and financial services industry. Mr. McConnell holds a B.S., cum laude, from Loyola Marymount University in Accounting. He also holds a B.A. from Loyola Marymount University in Information Systems and Quantitative Management. Mr. McConnell holds a CPA license (inactive) and is a CFA® charterholder. 

Dale Okuno, Regional Board Member

CEO, Okuno Associates, Inc.

Dale Okuno’s professional credentials include: FINRA Series 7 and 24, Investment Advisor Representative, Registered Principal with Transamerica Financial Advisors, Inc. (TFA), Chartered Life Underwriter, and Life Member of the Million Dollar Round Table. He currently directs Okuno Associates, Inc., an Office of Supervisory Jurisdiction of TFA.

Dale was born, raised and still resides in Pasadena, with his wife, Ayako, and their two children. He graduated from San Jose State University with BA degrees in Psychology and Philosophy, and began working at Okuno Associates in 1975, becoming managing general agent in 1982.

In 1986 he co-founded E-Z Data, Inc., serving as its CEO, to develop practice management software especially designed for financial advisors and financial institutions. In 2009 E-Z Data was acquired by E-bix, and today its software continues to provide solutions to over 100,000 insurance and financial advisors worldwide.

Dale serves on the board of the Pacific Commerce Bank, Puroast Coffee Company and a number of technology companies. His community activities include supporting the Music Center of Los Angeles, the Pasadena Jazz Institute (chair) and the Alliance College Ready Public Schools (board member). 

Wendy Wachtell, Regional Board Member

President, Joseph Drown Foundation

Wendy Wachtell is the Vice President and Program Director of the Joseph Drown Foundation, a Los Angeles-based private foundation that distributes approximately $5,000,000 annually to nonprofits in the Los Angeles area. She currently serves on a variety of Boards, including the Joseph Drown Foundation, Los Angeles Urban Funders, The John Thomas Dye School, The Accelerated School, and the Center on Philanthropy and Public Policy at the University of Southern California. 

Avi Dorfman, Regional Board Chair

Vice President & Head of New Ventures, The D.E. Shaw Group

Avi Dorfman is Vice President & Head of New Ventures at The D. E. Shaw Group, a global investment, research and technology development firm with over $45 billion under management. He previously served as a Vice President at Accretive, a venture capital firm with $500 million under management dedicated to building technology companies from the ground up, most notably Fandango and Accretive Health. In 2012, he co-founded Compass, a real estate technology platform that has since gone national and is valued at close to $2 billion. He began his career in the corporate finance and strategy practice at McKinsey & Company, and also spent summers in the investment banking division at Lehman Brothers and on the private investments team at Access Industries. In 2017, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio appointed Avi to his Technology Leadership Advisory Council. Prior to his national board appointment, Avi served as the founding chair of CollegeSpring’s New York regional board for two years, through which he was integral to the organization’s rapid growth on the east coast. He received a B.A. with first class honors from McGill University and an Masters in international finance and economic policy from Columbia University.

Ankur Agrawal, Regional Board Member

Partner, McKinsey & Company

Ankur Agrawal is a Partner at McKinsey & Company in the New York office. He is a leader of the North America Healthcare practice, with a focus on and passion for counseling healthcare companies on strategy and corporate finance. Ankur’s recent work includes corporate strategy, M&A and strategy/finance functional excellence at many leading healthcare companies. He has worked recently with several mid-size companies and helped them scale.

Ankur has authored articles on strategy and corporate finance topics in McKinsey on Finance and has presented his work at CFO/CSO round tables in Boston, New York and San Francisco. Ankur received his B. Eng. degree in Mechanical and Electrical Engineering from IRIM&EE India. He was also designated a Chartered Engineer by the Engineering Council, UK. Ankur received his MBA from Harvard Business School, where he graduated as a Baker Scholar and Loeb Fellow in finance.

Tracey K. Allard, Regional Board Member

Nonprofit Executive and Social Entrepreneur

Tracey is a strategic nonprofit leader and social entrepreneur with a longstanding commitment to empowering marginalized individuals and communities.

Currently, Tracey serves as the Executive Director of the African Dream Initiative, an organization that gives promising but disadvantaged children the resources to become Africa’s future leaders. She is also the Founder of a new venture – in development – called Community Entrepreneur Corps, to empower an underserved population of community college students to become agents of change in their communities.

Previously, Tracey served as the Executive Director of The Resolution Project where she led the delivery and expansion of a unique Fellowship program that helps undergraduate students create social change in more than 60 countries around the world. During her time at Resolution, Tracey built key partnerships to ensure that Resolution’s Fellowship opportunity reaches marginalized and other under-represented students.

Prior to joining Resolution, Tracey served as Executive Director of StreetWise Partners, an organization offering unique career mentoring and professional development to individuals with multiple barriers to employment. There she restructured, refocused, and improved operations to increase effectiveness and deepen impact; improved methods for evaluating organizational effectiveness; and initiated the organization’s first formal strategic planning process in 17 years to guide future direction and decisions.

Tracey holds a Master of Science degree in Nonprofit Management from The New School, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. Tracey’s passion for travel and learning about other cultures has led her to destinations including Fiji, Mongolia, Madagascar, Cambodia, Swaziland, and Turkey.

Tracey is a first-generation American whose family hails from Trinidad & Tobago, and she is a proud, long-time resident of Brooklyn, NY.

Alex Farman-Farmaian, Regional Board Member

Partner & Vice Chairman, Edgewood Management

Alex is a Partner and Vice-Chairman of Edgewood, a leading asset management firm with over $11 billion under management, a role he has held since 2006. He is a member of Edgewood’s Investment Committee. Previously he was at W.P. Stewart & Co. for 19 years where he was a senior member of the U.S. and global equity research and portfolio management teams and was responsible for managing some 20% of the firm’s overall assets. He chaired the Investment Oversight Committee and managed the bulk of the firm’s global account assets. Alex received a B.A. in Economics from Princeton University in 1987.  He was President of the Princeton Club of New York until November 2006 and belongs to the Economics Club of New York. He serves on the board of the International Women’s Health Coalition (IWHC).

Teena-Ann Sankoorikal, Regional Board Member

Levine Lee, LLP

Teena-Ann V. Sankoorikal is a partner at Levine Lee, LLP. She has broad experience in litigation, with particular experience in intellectual property-related disputes, including patent, copyright, trade secret and breach of contract, as well as antitrust matters.  Ms. Sankoorikal has represented both plaintiffs and defendants including (patent litigation), IBM (copyright, trade secret and antitrust), Qualcomm (patent), Warner Brothers Records (copyright) and Frank Reginald Brown (dispute relating to ownership interest in Snapchat), among others.

Ms. Sankoorikal co-authored the Intellectual Property Law Answer Book, published by the Practising Law Institute, which is currently in its fourth edition. Ms. Sankoorikal was recognized for her work in intellectual property litigation in the Leaders League Innovation – Technology & Intellectual Property Report in 2014.  In 2013, Ms. Sankoorikal was named a “Rising Star” by both New York Law Journal and the Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA).  In 2012, she received the “Best Lawyers Under 40” award from the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association for her outstanding professional achievements and dedication to the Asian Pacific American community.

Richard Steele, Regional Board Member

Principal, SYPartners

Dickie is a principal at the management and design consulting firm SYPartners, where he’s partnered with senior leaders at IBM and other companies to establish new strategies and tools to transform the way they work.

He has over two decades of experience in corporate strategy and organizational consulting. As a partner at Marakon Associates, Dickie advised clients across the consumer goods, media, and financial services sectors. As a senior partner and head of the New York office at The Bridgespan Group, he worked in the social sector, tackling problems relating to education, technology, and global development for The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The Omidyar Network, and The United Nations Foundation, among others.

Dickie has written extensively on strategic management for publications including Harvard Business Review. He also teaches a course on leadership at The School of International & Public Affairs, Columbia University and serves on the boards of The Atlantic Council and The DO School, a disruptive higher education start-up. He studied at Durham University and has an MBA with distinction from INSEAD.

He lives in New York and is married to the neuroscientist Sarah Stanley, with whom he has two children, Evie and Felix.

Nada Usina, Regional Board Member

Managing Director, Russell Reynolds Associates

Nada Usina is a member of Russell Reynolds Associates’ CEO/Board Services Practice and leads the Technology Sector for the firm across the Americas. She also co-leads the firm’s global Digital Convergence and Mobile Practice as well as the firm’s global Sports Practice. Her clients range from Fortune 500 media, entertainment, consumer and technology brands to venture capital and private equity-backed companies.

Prior to joining Russell Reynolds, Nada served as President of publicly-traded JumpTV, which merged with Neulion to become the world’s leading online video and IPTV multi-platform provider. Prior to that, Usina was President of XOS Broadband, which was acquired by JumpTV for over $60 million.

Nada has had responsibility for up to 1,500 employees. She served as General Manager and President, Nokia Canada, General Manager, North and South America for Nokia’s entertainment and media business, and was Director of Yahoo!’s entertainment business development and sales programs. She also led the sports business and the marketing team at, which was acquired by Yahoo! for $5.7 billion during her tenure.

A native of Toronto, Canada, she moved to the U.S. and received her B.S. in Marketing and International Business and her M.S. from Florida State University.

Jordan Waxman, Regional Board Member

Managing Partner, HSW Advisors at HighTower

Jordan is a managing partner at HSW Advisors at HighTower, where he specializes in tax, wealth transfer, philanthropic and estate planning, and asset risk management. He frequently advises on the structure and execution of onshore and offshore trust solutions, and counsels on philanthropic planning issues and techniques.

Jordan joined HighTower in March 2012 after ten years with the Private Banking and Investment Group at Merrill Lynch and eight years as a wealth manager with Goldman Sachs & Co. He has been named to Worth Magazine’s Top 250 Wealth Advisors list, the Financial Times Top Registered Investment Adviser list, and Forbes’ America’s Top 100 Wealth Advisors list, among other honors. He earned an MBA from the University of Chicago, B.C.L. and LL.B. degrees from McGill University, and a B.A. (with honors) from McGill’s Faculty of Arts.

Jordan is a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Professionals and the State Bars of New York and Massachusetts. He is a member of the Board of Directors of HighTower and the Friends of McGill University, and is Board Emeritus of the Eli and Edythe Broad Theatre in Santa Monica. He serves on the Professional Advisory Committee of McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management, where he co-teaches Investments for the B. Comm, and on the Faculty Advisory Board of McGill’s Faculty of Law, where he teaches Estate Planning. He lives with his wife, Caren, and three children in Cresskill, NJ.

Joel Jones, Regional Board Chair

Vice President, Sales Planning and Operations, Facebook

Joel joined Facebook in 2012 and leads the global Sales Planning & Operations team, which scales Facebook’s business through planning, enablement, and operations. Prior to Facebook, Joel worked at Yahoo! for five years with roles leading the Americas Ad Marketplaces team, as the Chief of Staff to the CEO, and in the Corporate Strategy group. Prior to that, Joel spent seven years with McKinsey & Company leading digital media business growth and go-to-market strategy in high tech. Joel has an M.S. in Applied Physics from Caltech and a B.S.E. in Engineering Physics from the University of Michigan, and currently resides in San Jose, CA.

Diana Balgas, Regional Board Member

Executive Director of Transfer Programs, CSU East Bay

Karen Bene, Regional Board Member

Director of Sales, LinkedIn

Karen joined LinkedIn in 2011 and is currently a Director of Sales within the Marketing Solutions business, after having spent several years holding operations leadership roles.  In 2015, Karen led LinkedIn’s Women’s Initiative, a program aimed at increasing diverse perspectives from high potential and qualified women in senior leadership roles through creating an inclusive workplace.  Prior to LinkedIn, Karen spent 11 years in various management consulting, program management and operations roles with Cap Gemini and Advent Software.  Karen earned a BA in Legal Studies from the University of California, Berkeley.

Walker Conolly, Regional Board Member

Director, PricewaterhouseCoopers

Currently a Director within PwC Advisory and co-leader of the Forensics Services Data Analytics practice, Walker is a client service engagement leader with a focus on the financial services industry. His clients include major financial institutions and regional banks, and his project work includes solving complex regulatory matters and assessing and improving compliance programs.

Across 11 years with PwC, Walker has been primarily focused on anti-money laundering, third party risk management, regulatory and management reporting, payments processing and finance transformation; within these areas, he has successfully leveraged technology to provide impactful and effective solutions for clients. Additionally, he has led the design and implementation of multiple large scale web based applications for regulatory compliance purposes.

Walker has experience in leading large international teams and managing multiple complex engagements simultaneously, and is a leader with a proven track record who invests heavily in the career and skill development of his team.  Walker actively works to establish a practice that provides a great depth of knowledge across a wide range of services.  

Tarah S. Evans, Regional Board Member

Executive Director, Franklin & Catherine Johnson Foundation

Tarah has more than 15 years of experience with non-profits and in the private sector and her role is to manage the widespread philanthropic efforts of the company and the Johnson family.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California at Berkeley and a Master’s Degree in Communication Management from the Annenberg School at the University of Southern California. Tarah also obtained her certification (CPCC) in Executive Coaching in 2005 from the Coaches Training Institute.

Tarah began consulting to the Job Corps division of the U.S. Department of Labor in Washington, DC. She also worked as an associate at a consulting firm that developed curricula for job training programs serving at-risk youth.

Tarah was also director of New Ways Workers, a San Francisco-based youth program for high school students. Working with the mayor’s office and the San Francisco school district, she designed and launched a variety of mentoring and school-to-career programs to help students finish high school and move on to college – as well as handling fundraising, grant-writing, and working directly with the youth.

At Asset Management, she handles all manner of giving, including grants to educational, arts and environmental organizations. Youth education programs are her passion – she currently serves on the board of the East Palo Alto Youth Court, one of the newest additions to the portfolio.

Katherine Hagey, Regional Board Member

Manager, Bain & Company

Katie Hagey is a Manager in Bain & Company’s San Francisco office. She began as an Associate Consultant in Bain’s Boston office in 2008. Katie currently works with Bain’s Private Equity clients on due diligence projects across a range of industries.

Since joining Bain in 2008, Katie has worked primarily with retail and consumer products clients across numerous sectors including grocery, casual dining, apparel and accessories, gift products, footwear and activewear. Her experience covers a range of functions, with expertise in corporate innovation / adjacency strategy / new concept development and enterprise technology (IT) strategy.

In addition to her client work with Bain, Katie is the AC Recruiting Manager for Bain Bay Area. She is passionate about higher education, particularly admissions and financial aid.

Katie received her BA/BS, MBA, and MA in Higher Education from Stanford University.

Matthew Kinsella, Regional Board Member

Managing Director, Maverick Capital Ventures

Mr. Kinsella joined Maverick in 2005 and was responsible for the public software investment effort from 2008 to 2014 and in 2014 he began focusing full-time on Maverick’s private investment efforts.  He received his B.B.A. from the University of Notre Dame (Summa Cum Laude, Hamilton Award recipient) where he was President of Keenan Hall and Treasurer of the Class of 2005.  Prior to joining Maverick, Mr. Kinsella interned in the Alternative Investments Group at J.P. Morgan, the Notre Dame Endowment Office, and the Chicago Board of Trade.  He serves as Chairman of the Maverick Capital Foundation.

Paula Schmidlin, Regional Board Member

Senior H.R. Consultant, Tradeshift

Sinohe Terrero, Regional Board Member

Chief Financial Officer and Chief Operating Officer, Quid

Southern California Young Professionals Board

Dana Craig, Young Professionals Board Chair

Senior Associate, Gibson Dunn

Trisha Ananiades, Young Professionals Board Member


Lorenzo Arroyo, Young Professionals Board Member

Associate, Gibson Dunn

William Brien, Young Professionals Board Member

Associate, Gibson Dunn

Arthur Chan, Young Professionals Board Member

Associate, Gibson Dunn

Alexander Jacobson, Young Professionals Board Member

Management Consultant, PwC Consulting

Katy Sharp, Young Professionals Board Member

Associate, Gibson Dunn

Jared Strumwasser, Young Professionals Board Member

Associate, Gibson Dunn

Taylor Thompson, Young Professionals Board Member

Financial Advisor, UBS Financial Services

Peter Wyman, Young Professionals Board Member

Associate, Goldman Sachs

Bay Area Young Professionals Board

Chloe Breider

Associate, IVP

Chloe Breider is an Associate at IVP, a late-stage venture capital firm based in Menlo Park, CA.  Prior to joining IVP, Chloe worked in the TMT Investment Banking group at Goldman Sachs. Chloe graduated Cum Laude from Wellesley College, where she earned a B.A. in Economics and was captain of the varsity soccer team.

Bobby Christianson

Associate, Goldman Sachs

Bobby Christianson is an Investment Banking Analyst within the West Region Advisory Group at Goldman Sachs in San Francisco. Prior to joining Goldman Sachs, Bobby attended UCLA where he graduated with a B.A in Economics from the Honors College and was President of the Undergraduate Business Society. Bobby previously served as a member of Junior Achievement Southern California’s Young Professionals board.

Nhi Duong

Marketing Manager, Entelo

Nhi Duong is currently a Marketing Manager at a SF based start-up Entelo. Prior to moving to the Bay Area, Nhi started her own wholesale and distribution business where she sourced and sold inventory for various LA based e-commerce companies. She holds a BA in Psychology and a BS in Business Administration from the University of Southern California. When not working, you can find her painting, playing tennis or experimenting with a new recipe from her many cookbooks.

Patrick Fong

TPG Capital

Patrick Fong is with TPG Capital and is based in San Francisco, where he focuses on the firm’s investments in the technology sector. Prior to joining TPG, Patrick worked in the Technology group at Evercore. Patrick received his BS in finance and economics from the NYU Stern School of Business, where he was Valedictorian.

Robert Sternberg

Associate, Accel

Robert is an Associate at Accel, focusing on enterprise software and fintech. Prior to joining Accel, Robert worked in the TMT Investment Banking Group at Goldman Sachs in San Francisco. He holds a B.S. in Business Administration from Babson College and is originally from New York City.

Timothy Wang



Oscar Wong

Associate, GIC

Oscar is current an Associate in the Direct Investments Group at GIC, evaluating investments in technology and business services.  Prior to GIC, he covered technology companies in the Investment Banking Division at Goldman Sachs. He received a BA in Honors Business Administration from the Ivey Business School at Western University.  Oscar is passionate about educational initiatives, involved in volunteering with various organizations and tutoring underprivileged students since high school.