Contact our Staff
All of Community Partners' current staff are listed on this page. Please note that emails are provided, but with spaces on either side of the @ symbol. This is to reduce the amount of spam we receive. To email a Community Partners staffperson, copy the emails listed below, paste into your email software and remove the spaces.
President and CEO
paulv @ CommunityPartners.org
Paul has spent the last 24 years working in the fields of management, planning, communications, training, and organizational development for businesses, public agencies, foundations, and public interest groups. He has advised on the management of corporate and foundation giving programs and facilitated strategy planning with executive teams and directors of business, grantmaking and community organizations. For eight years he served on the staff of the California Community Foundation, a major Southern California regional grant making institution. He left the role of executive vice president in 1990 to join the Newport Beach-based Wilson Consulting Group as a senior consultant chiefly working with management teams of small to medium-sized businesses in the home-building and commercial development fields. In 1992, the founding board of Community Partners asked Paul to lead the start-up effort that resulted in the establishment of Community Partners as a springboard for social and civic entrepreneurs, emerging groups, and community initiatives in Southern California. He taught aspects of planning in the voluntary nonprofit sector to graduate-level master’s degree candidates at the University of Southern California from 1996 to 2004. As a community volunteer, Paul chairs the board of directors of Pasadena-based Furious Theatre Company, serves on the executive committee of Coro Southern California’s board of directors, and advises the multi-disciplinary performing arts organization known as About Productions.
Senior Program Assistant
pbanez @ CommunityPartners.org
Pia provides support to Community Partners' program team. She is a graduate of the University of California, Irvine, where she received a B.S. in Public Health Sciences. It was there that her appreciation for the nonprofit sector began to develop. After working with several collegiate and community-based organizations, she was able to travel to the Philippines and participate in a medical outreach program that served victims of natural disasters. Pia continues to gain knowledge and understanding of the nonprofit sector, as her position at Community Partners allows for constant interaction with nonprofit and philanthropic leaders across California.
Accounts Receivable and Payroll Associate
bbiglangawa @ CommunityPartners.org
Blessie supports the finance team as accounts receivable and payroll associate. She has an associate’s degree in business administration from Manila Central University. She previously worked at Los Angeles Universal Preschool overseeing payroll and accounts payable, and California Institute of Technology as an administrative assistant in the graphic arts department. She loves to travel and goes home to the Philippines as often as she can.
Receptionist and Senior Administrative Assistant
tbradley @ CommunityPartners.org
In addition to answering calls and greeting guests, Teaa provides administrative support to both the program staff and financial staff at Community Partners. Teaa began her nonprofit career a few years ago providing office management to an AIDS research organization. She has also participated in many charity events over the past several years, including the annual L.A. AIDS Walk and Food on Foot. When Teaa is not in the office she can often be found roaming the globe with her husband, or enjoying a good book.
acharles @ CommunityPartners.org
Amanda provides program management and logistical oversight for several of Community Partners’ partnerships with grantmakers as well as strategic initiatives focusing on peer learning and knowledge sharing. Her background includes catering and event management experience in the public and nonprofit sectors, as well as work as a freelance graphic designer. During her time at Community Partners, she has conceived, planned, budgeted, and executed nearly twenty large-scale events. These events include annual conferences for The California Wellness Foundation and leadership training seminars for The Annenberg Foundation, as well as other peer learning convenings. Prior to joining Community Partners core staff in 2008, Amanda worked for one of Community Partners' fiscally sponsored projects – WriteGirl – coordinating a variety of events including monthly workshops and fundraising events. She holds a BFA in communication design from Carnegie Mellon University and a certificate in event management from The George Washington University.
Senior Resource Fellow
dclement @ CommunityPartners.org
Dan assists leaders of emerging projects and initiatives, as well as existing nonprofit organizations, in recruiting volunteers and placing them into service in positions that are commensurate with their skill sets and educational backgrounds. Prior to Community Partners, Dan worked for 21 years as a litigation attorney in the Sempra Energy Law Department, where he handled a wide variety of civil lawsuits involving issues of environmental, business, insurance coverage, and personal injury law. Prior to that, Dan was a litigation associate in the Los Angeles office of Sidley & Austin, and an assistant U.S. attorney for the Central District of California. Dan is currently a board member at the Colburn School in Los Angeles, and has served as a volunteer at several nonprofit organizations, including the Constitutional Rights Foundation, the Los Angeles Women's Foundation, PS #1 Elementary School, Southwestern University Law School, and the Exeter Alumni Association. Dan received law degrees from University of Pennsylvania Law School and Georgetown University Law Center, and a B.A. from Stanford University.
jcole @ CommunityPartners.org
Julie provides support to the executive team and the organization in general. Prior to joining Community Partners, she worked primarily in the field of land use planning and development. Julie was inspired to seek a professional position in the nonprofit sector after ten years as a volunteer docent with two organizations, leading walks to educate and advocate for historical resources and preservation in the City of Santa Monica and for natural resources and conservation in Topanga State Park. Julie holds a B.S. from California State University, Northridge, in health science, with a focus on environmental and occupational health. Her passions include hiking, exercise, gardening, and nature.
Accounts Payable Assistant
mcolon @ CommunityPartners.org
Maria assists in the finance department with accounts payable. She is currently pursuing her B.A. degree at the University of Phoenix in Business Administration. Previously, Maria worked for 21st Century Auto as a Senior New Business Underwriter Assistant for seven years. Maria joins Community Partners as a welcome change in her career. She enjoys bowling and outings with her family.
Sheri Dunn Berry
Director of Programs
sdunnberry @ CommunityPartners.org
Sheri’s extensive experience within the complexities of urban environments and the nonprofit sector - around public policy, knowledge-sharing, and shaping organizational effectiveness -- is uniquely suited to this newly created position. Sheri leads and oversees the success of the fiscal sponsorship program, coordinates our partnerships with grantmakers, and much more. She is the former executive director of the Los Angeles United Methodist Urban Foundation and previously served in policy and development positions at RCNO Training Center, Children Now and the Urban Strategies Council in Oakland, where she went on to become the executive director of the National Community Building Network. Sheri currently serves on the board of directors for PolicyLink and on the investment committee for the board of the California-Pacific United Methodist Foundation. She holds an undergraduate degree in public affairs from UC Berkeley and a Master's in public administration from USC.
Senior Human Resources Assistant
lflores @ CommunityPartners.org
Leslie assists in the Human Resources and Finance departments. She is a graduate from California State University, Fullerton where she received a B.A. in English and a teaching credential. Leslie taught English as a Foreign Language in El Salvador, and English as a second language to adults in the Los Angeles Unified and Hacienda-La Puente Unified School Districts before transitioning into a career in Human Resources.
Executive Vice President
lfowells @ CommunityPartners.org
Linda Fowells, Executive Vice President, ensures that Community Partners builds the capacity, effectiveness, and sustainability of community leaders, organizations, and multi-organizational efforts across California. She has provided training and counsel to a broad range of network, collaborative and organizational efforts from inception to more mature stages in their life cycles.Linda brings unique cross-sectoral experience, having worked in corporate, government and nonprofit settings. Her experience spans the fields of organizational capacity, leadership development, strategy, public policy, program development and planning, financial oversight, and resource development. Drawing on this background, she is frequently called upon to consult to non- and for-profit organizations, foundations and multi-organizational networks. In addition, she writes and speaks publicly on civic engagement and organizational effectiveness. Over the years, Linda has served on many local and national boards and advisory committees, most often for efforts addressing community technology, the arts, and youth. She has an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School, and a BA from Pomona College.
Senior Program Director
cfreeman @ CommunityPartners.org
Cynthia oversees a multi-million dollar portfolio of fiscal sponsorship projects, manages services for foundation clients, and leads a variety of special projects. Frequently sought for her planning experience and lively facilitation style, she also consults on governance and strategic planning for nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining Community Partners in 2006, she worked as a policy director for a trade association of community-based human service agencies. Previously, she spent seven years in the field of philanthropy, most recently at the New York Foundation, making grants to community organizing, advocacy, and start-up projects in New York City’s low-income neighborhoods. She also planned new grantmaking and technical assistance initiatives and ran a summer internship in philanthropy. Freeman has served as a consultant to numerous nonprofit organizations and to the New York City Department of Homeless Services, and began her career as a community organizer and fundraiser for a grassroots organization. She has served on the board of Interfaith Funders and the founding New York steering committee of Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy, and recently chaired the board of Jumpstart, where she remains on the executive committee. Freeman is a graduate of Brown University and has a master’s degree in public and nonprofit management from New York University’s Wagner School of Public Service.
Chief Financial Officer
mfunahashi @ CommunityPartners.org
Mamie oversees and directs all aspects of Community Partners’ finance and administrative operations. She brings to Community Partners over 16 years of experience leading the financial functions of both nonprofit and for-profit organizations. Prior to joining Community Partners, Mamie spent 8 years at Los Angeles Universal Preschool (LAUP) where she played an integral role in the design, development and oversight of the finance and accounting department. A graduate of USC’s Leventhal School of Accounting, Mamie began her accounting career at Arthur Andersen LLP and worked in the entertainment field for companies such as Fox Filmed Entertainment and Ticketmaster. She has extensive management experience in accounting, finance, auditing, technology and nonprofit taxation. Born and raised in Los Angeles, her heart has always been in community service and advancing the public good. Mamie currently serves on the board of directors for Danny’s Farm Charitable Foundation and Education Spectrum.
jgaleas @ CommunityPartners.org
Joanna provides critical administrative and logistical support to Community Partners’ program staff. Joanna graduated from California State University, Los Angeles with a B.A. in business administration and is eager to bridge her fascination of business with her passion for community development work. In her free time, Joanna volunteers with Peace Over Violence, a local community-based organization whose focus is the elimination of violence against women.
rgutierrez @ CommunityPartners.org
Rick helps supervise the accounting department in the areas of accounts payable, accounts receivable, and payroll. He also assists with the production of monthly financial statements and project cash flows. Rick spent the first 13 years of his career in the restaurant, property management, and healthcare industries performing various accounting and finance functions. Searching for a job that brought a sense of greater purpose where he could work with passionate, motivated people, he decided on the nonprofit sector. Prior to joining Community Partners, he worked for almost eight years at Los Angeles Universal Preschool where he assisted with financial reporting and analysis, budgeting, forecasting, modeling, cash flows, and strategic planning. He has a B.S. in finance from California State University, Long Beach. In his spare time he enjoys running and cooking.
Senior Program Director
jharper @ CommunityPartners.org
Judy directs the project office for Kaiser Permanente’s Southern California Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) Zones initiative. This 10-site, $10 million effort to combat obesity through place-based, multi-organizational networks, aims to transform the community context for health by creating environments that make “the healthy choice the easy choice.” Judy develops and oversees peer learning programs and technical assistance support for the networks, their partners and the network facilitators. Judy also continues to manage a portfolio of fiscal sponsorship projects and identifies and develops new projects and strategic initiatives for Community Partners. Judy brings nearly 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector, providing organizational and network development support, designing programs, and developing resources for a wide range of nonprofit initiatives. Judy previously served as associate director for the Border Philanthropy Partnership at the Synergos Institute, directed community development programs at MAAC Project’s affordable housing communities, was program officer for San Diego Dialogue’s cross-border and regional collaborative projects, and served as associate director for development at the San Diego Repertory Theatre. Judy is a founding board member of the Media Arts Center San Diego and a 2010-11 Women’s Policy Institute Fellow. She holds an M.A. in Urban Planning and Latin American Studies from the University of California, Los Angeles and a B.A. in Political Science from Occidental College. A former Fulbright Fellow in Mexico and a San Diego Rotary Club Ambassadorial Scholar in Brazil, Judy speaks fluent Spanish and Portuguese.
jhermosa @ CommunityPartners.org
Jelyn supports the finance department in matters relating to accounts payable, office administration, contracts, and grants. She spent two years studying economics at the University of the Philippines and a year studying accounting at Portland State University. In her three years in the United States, Jelyn has lived in Portland and Illinois, but has fallen in love with California and thinks it's where she wants to stay. In her spare time, she is an avid gamer and writes for a couple of gaming websites.
Bridget Hogan Cole
Senior Program Director, BCCQ and SCI
bcole @ CommunityPartners.org
Bridget has a unique combination of education and experience in healthcare technology and public health administration. She comes to the Building Clinic Capacity for Quality (BCCQ) and Specialty Care Initiative (SCI) programs with more than 18 years of program leadership, project development, and technology planning and implementation experience. She has held operations, consulting, and administrative positions with community health centers, Blue Cross of California, healthcare engineering firms, Kaiser Permanente Foundation Hospitals, national independent service agencies, and divisions of the Hospital Council of Southern California. Most recently Bridget led a Los Angeles area community health center's strategic planning and health information technology effort which resulted in implementation of several technology-enabled quality improvement projects. Bridget received a B.S. in electrical engineering from the University of Vermont. Her focus was on hospital instrumentation, biomedical and clinical engineering. She received a Master’s of Public Health with a concentration in health services administration from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Senior Program Associate
ghopkins @ CommunityPartners.org
Gwen works primarily on the Specialty Care Initiative (SCI), helping primary and specialty care providers work together toward high-quality, accessible care for low-income and uninsured Californians. Prior to joining Community Partners, Gwen worked as an organizational development consultant with the Aspen Institute’s Human Resources department, helping to design a staff professional development program. This work was informed by her four years on staff in the Institute’s Washington, D.C. office, managing a $2.9 million global health policy advocacy project. During this time, Gwen discovered a love of capacity building, improving organizational systems for staff support, communications strategy and data management to deliver greater impact. Gwen graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Trinity College in Hartford, CT with a B.A. in English Literature and minors in French and Women, Gender & Sexuality. She enjoys creative nonfiction, camping trips, and exploring LA.
phung @ CommunityPartners.org
As program director, Priscilla works on strategic initiatives and partnerships with grantmakers with an emphasis on capacity-building, peer learning, and knowledge sharing. She also manages a portfolio of fiscal sponsorship projects. Priscilla has over a decade experience in nonprofit fundraising, capacity-building, and event planning. Prior to joining Community Partners, Priscilla spent 5 years at the Grassroots Institute for Fundraising Training (GIFT), first as Co-Director and then Executive Director, as well as editor of the Grassroots Fundraising Journal, its bimonthly publication. Through GIFT, she worked with grassroots, organizing, and community-based organizations around the country to provide training, resources, and movement-building opportunities related to fundraising. Priscilla also serves as chair of the board for National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum and on the board executive committee for the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy. She graduated from University of California, Berkeley with a dual degree in women’s studies and in peace and conflict studies.
chunt @ CommunityPartners.org
Chris provides technical assistance to community clinics involved with the Building Clinic Capacity for Quality (BCCQ) Program. He also develops quality improvement and health information technology tools and resources and provides support to other healthcare-related projects at Community Partners. Prior to joining the Community Partners team, Chris attended the University of California, Los Angeles and received a Master’s in Public Health with a concentration in healthcare management and policy. Chris also holds a B.S. in psychobiology from UCLA and has previously worked as a research associate in the biotechnology sector.
lkay @ CommunityPartners.org
Lauren develops and implements communications and marketing strategies for Community Partners, and supports the organization in all activities related to communications, publications, and PR. Lauren brings more than 15 years as a professional in the civic arena and philanthropic sector to her new role. She has served as Project Director for the National Network of Consultants to Grantmakers, and honed her communications expertise as Director of Communications for the California Community Foundation during a period of rapid growth and expansion in the early and mid-90’s. As a consultant, she has guided and advised numerous foundations and nonprofit organizations on public relations matters, media outreach, and strategic communications. A seasoned writer and editor, Lauren holds a degree in journalism from California State University, Northridge and started her working life as a reporter and editor with community newspapers in the Southland.
Director of Finance
jkum @ CommunityPartners.org
Janny works with the finance and administration staff and assists the Vice President of Finance and Administration in matters relating to finance, human resources, technology, and office administration. Her career started in the for-profit sector with Wilshire Associates and The Walt Disney Company. Janny has since progressed to focus in the non-profit sector and has accumulated over nine years of experience in finance and administration for conflict resolution services organizations. She has a MBA from the Peter F. Drucker Graduate School of Management at Claremont Graduate School, and a Bachelor of Science degree from University of California, San Diego.
Senior Accounts Payable Analyst
jlim @ CommunityPartners.org
Janine Lim supports Community Partners’ finance team as a finance analyst in accounts payable. Janine has a background in fiscal sponsorship, previously working with the Education Consortium of Central Los Angeles handling funds for projects sponsored by USC’s Neighborhood Outreach grant. She obtained a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she cultivated her interests in community activism and social justice. Janine is an advocate for the arts with a strong belief in the transformative power of movement.
Senior Program Assistant
rmclean @ CommunityPartners.org
Bekah provides support to Community Partners' two health program offices: Building Clinic Capacity for Quality (BCCQ) and Specialty Care Initiative (SCI). Bekah comes to Community Partners from the Alzheimer's Association, where she worked as a helpline specialist and executive assistant, helping families and patients cope with the challenges associated with dementia. She has a Bachelor's degree in cultural anthropology from California State University, Fullerton, and a passion for social justice, community service, and advocacy. On her days off, Bekah can be found enjoying local fare from a hole-in-the-wall café, planning her next international getaway, or laughing endlessly with her beautiful son Gram.
smurakami @ CommunityPartners.org
Sachiko provides technical assistance to a portfolio of Community Partners’ fiscal sponsorship projects and support for other organizational strategic initiatives. Working closely with senior leadership, she coordinates many of the administrative processes pertaining to the management and support of fiscal sponsorship projects. Before joining Community Partners in 2008, Sachiko interned with the Pacific Council on International Policy, Assembly Member Chu, and Congresswoman Hilda Solis. She is a graduate of the University of Southern California, where she received a B.A. in comparative literature and international relations focusing on the East Asian region and democratization. It was there that she first became interested in how nongovernmental organizations shape public policy and their importance in supporting emerging and maintaining consolidated democracies. An avid baseball fan, gamer, and fitness aficionado, Sachiko splits her free time going to games, playing the Xbox, and working out.
Senior Finance Associate
dreyes @ communitypartners.org
Working closely with the manager of finance and administration as well as the CFO, Delmy will manage project contract analysis and risk management. She oversees vendor contracts, insurance issues and project financial analysis reports. She was previously with an international development firm in Bethesda, MD. Delmy recently served as treasurer of the board for Community Bridges, Inc., a nonprofit organization that focuses on immigration integration and leadership development for diverse girls in her hometown of Takoma Park, MD. She graduated from Temple University in Philadelphia earning a degree in Accounting. Since Delmy is new to LA, she is spending her time exploring Southern California, practicing Bikram yoga, and spending time with her family.
Senior Program Associate
rshah @ CommunityPartners.org
Ravi provides technical assistance and support to Community Partners’ fiscal sponsorship projects and strategic initiatives, and assists the organization in matters relating to communications and technology. Previously, Ravi worked for the United Nations Association of San Diego and the National Peace Corps Association in Washington DC. From 2007 to 2009, he served as a Peace Corps Volunteer teaching English to primary, secondary, and university students in Ukraine. Ravi received a Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Southern California, and a B.A. in political science from University of California, San Diego. In his free time, Ravi enjoys traveling, going to Disneyland, and rooting for the Los Angeles Lakers.
ashakhbandaryan @ CommunityPartners.org
Arpiné provides technical assistance, peer learning opportunities, facilitation, and project management for the Kaiser HEAL Zone Initiative. Prior to joining Community Partners, she worked at the City of El Monte coordinating the PLACE (Policies for Livable, Active Communities and Environments) initiative funded by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. The program is dedicated to fostering policy change that supports the development of healthy, safe, and active environments for all community residents. Arpiné brings experience in policy and program development for healthy eating and active living initiatives, coalition building, and public sector, nonprofit, and community collaboration. She received a Master’s of Public Health and a B.A. in Biology from the University of Southern California.
lsolorio @ CommunityPartners.org
Lupe coordinates Community Partners’ fiscal sponsorship services. She also provides project leaders with individualized technical assistance and facilitates internal and external trainings in program planning, board development, proposal writing, and evaluation. In addition to her work at Community Partners, Lupe has served as a reader for the Proposition 10 Commission, as a selection panelist for Public Allies LA, and on the steering committee for the Asian Pacific Islander American Heritage Month for the City of Los Angeles. Lupe continues to be active in the community, serving on the board of the Asian Business League. She received a dual B.A. in international relations and Spanish from the University of Southern California.
Director of Human Resources and Talent Management
csouers @ communitypartners.org
In this newly created position, Clark oversees all aspects of human resources and talent management for all core and project staff of Community Partners. His human resources career spans the entertainment, hotel, and nonprofit industries. He was the director of human resources for Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), Sprint Center in Kansas City and The 02 in London. Most recently he was the director of human resources for Penny Lane, a large social services organization in Southern California. Clark received his BA in Business Administration from Pepperdine University and earned his MBA from Arizona State University. He is also president and founder of LIFE REVOLUTION, a social cause organization.