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Chancellor’s Community Advisory Board

Group shot of the 2023 Chancellor’s Community Advisory Board.

Ambassadors in the Community

The Chancellor’s Office is committed to fostering and strengthening positive relationships with the campus and community organizations. The Chancellor’s Community Advisory Board (CCAB), formerly known as the Board of Overseers, advocates for UC San Diego and advises the Chancellor, with specific emphasis on the university’s role in the community. The board also supports the formulation and execution of advocacy plans and programs related to increasing the community’s understanding of the positive impact UC San Diego has on the region’s development and progress.

Created by former Chancellor William D. McElroy in 1973, CCAB is one of the oldest advisory boards of its type in the University of California system.

Message from Cristina Chiriboga-Hahn, Chair, Chancellor’s Community Advisory Board

Read message from CCAB Chair

Cristina Chiriboga-Hahn

Members

The board is composed of talented, experienced and motivated citizens of San Diego interested in fostering positive and productive relationships between UC San Diego and the community at large. The board’s membership reflects the diversity of San Diego.

J.C. Hurtado-Prater*, Chair

J.C. Hurtado-Prater

Leadership Consultant, Speaker and Author, Cannonball Consulting LLC
Chula Vista, Calif.

J.C. Hurtado-Prater has extensive nonprofit executive experience and now serves as a leadership consultant, speaker and author. A community leader in the South Bay of San Diego County, Hurtado-Prater serves as the worship pastor for New Hope Community Church and is a member of the board of directors for both South Bay Community Services and the Southwestern College Foundation. Hurtado-Prater has sat on bond oversight committees for the city of Chula Vista, Southwestern College and the Chula Vista Elementary School District. In addition, Hurtado-Prater gives motivational speeches to hundreds of local youth each year as a member of the Los Angeles Chargers outreach team. Hurtado-Prater is also the founder and host of The Conversation Table, an online talk show, as well as an adjunct professor in the master of arts in organizational leadership program at Point Loma Nazarene University.

A veteran of the United States Army, Hurtado-Prater received his bachelor of arts from UCLA, his master in business administration from Saint Joseph’s College of Maine and is currently pursuing his doctoral degree in Education Policy, Organization and Leadership through the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Michael Connolly*, Vice Chair

Michael Connolly

Adjunct Faculty, San Diego State University; Member of Campo Kumeyaay Nation
Campo, Calif.

Michael Connolly is a member of the Campo Kumeyaay Nation. In 1990, he helped establish and direct one of the first tribal Environmental Protection Agencies in the United States. Connolly researched and implemented traditional environmental practices in contemporary land and resource management. He worked on environmental policy for the National Congress of American Indians, National Tribal Environmental Council, the Good Neighbor Environmental Board and several US Environmental Protection Agency advisory committees. His work on issues of taxation policy and impediments to sustainable tribal economies is nationally recognized. He has authored many papers on tribal economics, Kumeyaay history and resource management. He has three published books on Kumeyaay history and cosmology. Connolly’s formal education includes a bachelor of science in Manufacturing Engineering and a master of arts in Economics. He is an adjunct faculty in American Indian Studies at San Diego State University. He served 17 years in elected office for the Campo Kumeyaay Nation.

Suzanne Afflalo

Suzanne Afflalo

Medical Director, Alliance Health Clinic
San Diego, Calif.

Suzanne Afflalo is a retired Southern California Permanente Medical Group Family Physician who worked at Kaiser Permanente for 23 years. She currently serves as the medical director for the Alliance Health Clinic, which provides healthcare for the refugee population. She also serves on many boards, including the County of San Diego’s Health Services Advisory Board, the Multicultural Health Foundation Board, the Scripps Hub Academic Research Core Advisory Board, the San Diego Black Nurses Association Advisory Board, the San Diego County Childhood Obesity Initiative-Healthcare Domain, the COVID-19 Equity Task Force, the Regional COVID-19 Task Force for Equitable Recovery, and the SDSU Community Advisory Board for Communities Fighting COVID.

Dr. Afflalo is passionate about working with minority and underserved communities, educating, encouraging and empowering people to obtain the best health possible. In Spring 2014, she designed and implemented A Healthier Me, a lifestyle change and health improvement program developed to decrease the morbidity and mortality of African-Americans with various cardiovascular risks. Dr. Afflalo’s goal is to spread A Healthier Me to numerous churches and other organizations in Southeast San Diego. In addition, she participates in several mentoring programs for middle and high school students, and has organized several health fairs, providing health screening at barbershops, churches and community events.

Paola Avila

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Chief of Staff, Office of San Diego Mayor

San Diego, Calif.

 

Ms. Avila was named San Diego Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Cross Border Leader of the Year.  She graduated from the University of California San Diego with a B.A. in Economics.  Worked in both the public and private sectors the last 25 years specializing in public policy and government affairs. Previous roles include work for the California State legislature and running a private consulting firm. Served as Vice President, International Business Affairs for 7 years and one month. Focused on the development and promotion of domestic and international public policies that enhance economic prosperity through cross border trade, an efficient border, and robust business, political and cultural relationships within the Calibaja Region and on a national scale with the U.S. and Mexico. Worked on promoting business between Mexico and San Diego.

Jaymie Bradford

Jaymie Bradford

Executive Vice President and COO, San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce; UC San Diego Alum ‘94
San Diego, Calif.

Jaymie Bradford leads the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce’s strategy and vision as the executive vice president and chief operating officer. She oversees the chamber’s day-to-day operations, directs public policy initiatives, and develops and implements long-term goals and strategies to ensure the organization is meeting its goal of making San Diego the most business-friendly region in California.

Prior to joining the chamber, Bradford worked in San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer’s office as deputy chief of staff and chief of policy and served in a similar capacity for interim Mayor Todd Gloria. She was director of intergovernmental relations during Jerry Sanders’ tenure as mayor and worked in policy and public affairs for the city of San Diego for a decade. Bradford was appointed to the San Diego Convention Center board of directors in 2017 and was voted by her fellow board members to serve as chair in 2020. She earned her degree in political science at UC San Diego and was a member of the NCAA Women’s Soccer team.

Dominique Cano-Stocco

Executive Director of External & Government Affairs, Verizon; UC San Diego Alum '94, MAS '11
San Diego, Calif.

Dominique Cano-Stocco serves as the executive director of external and government affairs for Verizon in Southern California. Dominique has served in a public affairs capacity for over twenty years in high profile organizations like The White House, U.S. Department of Transportation, Pepperdine University, UC San Diego and Oceana. She has advised individuals and organizations on political matters and has provided advocacy and lobbying expertise at the federal, state and local level. She has a bachelor's degree in political science from UC San Diego, and a master's in advanced studies degree in marine biodiversity and conservation from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. Dominique is a proud Hawaiian and Californian who loves the beach, stand-up paddle boarding and is committed to conserving the world's oceans in her free time. She’s currently serving as a Board officer with Wildcoast. She lives in Encinitas with her husband, daughter and dog "Sunshine." Fun Fact: Dominique is a shark geek & has appeared on Discovery Channel's Shark Week.

Sylvester “Sac” Carreathers

Sylvester Carreathers

Member, San Diego Urban League Board of Directors; UC San Diego Alum ‘74
Walnut, Calif.

Sylvester “Sac” Carreathers is a retired academic and principal partner of the Trigon Business Solutions Group. As the chief operating officer, he oversaw the development of business solutions for the management of research enterprises at several academic medical centers in Los Angeles County. Carreathers currently serves on the San Diego Urban League Board of Directors and as a consultant specializing in proposal development, contracts management systems and analysis, and diversity and inclusion workplace implementation and management. He is a UC San Diego alumnus and a proud parent of an alumnus of UC San Diego. This is Carreather’s second time to be appointed on CCAB.

Jorge Carrillo

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Retired Attorney/ALJ; UC San Diego Alum '72
San Diego, Calif.      

Starting at age 7 and through high school, Jorge attended schools in San Diego but worked summers as a farm worker in the Fresno and Hollister areas. Living in open spaces and working under harsh conditions for 10 hours a day, six days a week, in typical 90 to 100-degree temperatures, made Jorge appreciate the value of hard work and an education.

Jorge graduated from UC San Diego in 1972 and earned his Juris Doctorate degree from Stanford Law School in 1975. He joined the state Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB) at its inception in 1975 and litigated cases for 5 years protecting the rights of farm workers in San Diego and the Imperial Valley. For 2 ½ years, he served as the ALRB’s Chief Legal Counsel and Administrator. Jorge was then appointed to a 4-year term on the ALRB Board by Governor Jerry Brown and was confirmed by the State Senate with the active support of UFW founders Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta.

Jorge also worked several years with the California Attorney General Office enforcing hazardous waste laws. He was appointed as an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) for the California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board (CUIAB) where he worked for 22 years. He served as the CUIAB’s Chief Legal Counsel and as the Chief ALJ for its statewide appellate division. Additionally, Jorge campaigned and was elected as a School Board Member in a university town, Davis, CA.

Jorge has an extensive record of volunteering in schools and community services events in Northern California. Now retired, Jorge has returned to San Diego where he is on the leadership team of UC San Diego’s Chicanx/Latinx Alumni Council (CLAC). CLAC’s work is to assist UC San Diego in its outreach, admission, fundraising and support of Chicanx/Latinx students. Jorge has served on UC San Diego’s Hispanic Serving Institute Task Force and was a community member in the process to hire UC San Diego’s current Director of Admissions. Jorge is also on the Advisory Board for the UCSD Chicano Alumni Scholarship endowment fund through the San Diego Foundation.  He is a member of San Diego's La Raza Lawyer Association and MANA de San Diego.

Jorge’s immediate family has strong connections to UC San Diego. As the youngest of three children, all graduated from UC San Diego. His wife, Raquel Salazar-Carrillo, is the oldest of 10 children and all attended UC San Diego.  Jorge and Raquel have two sons, Andres and Jaime, who are also UC San Diego graduates.

As a result, Jorge and Raquel have established their own family endowment fund at UC San Diego to provide scholarships to students with highest financial need who are enrolled in the Chancellor’s Associate Scholarship Program (CASP). Jorge is working with others to establish another endowment fund, named Madrinas and Padrinos, at UC San Diego that will also provide scholarships for CASP students. Jorge has established another endowment fund at Stanford Law School to fund public interest law projects that benefits farm workers in California.   

Jorge was featured in the Spring 2022 edition of the Triton Magazine.  He was also the subject of an article for his philanthropy in early 2023 by Giving Back Magazine.  He has also been video-taped about his life by UC San Diego.

The Hon. Chris Cate

Founder, 3MC Strategies
San Diego, Calif.

Chris is the founder of 3MC Strategies, a San Diego firm specializing in public policy, public affairs, and business development. Chris founded the firm following his 8 years of service on the San Diego City Council. Chris Cate was elected to represent District 6 on the San Diego City Council in 2014, and proudly represented the neighborhoods of Clairemont Mesa, Kearny Mesa, Mira Mesa, Miramar, Park Village, and Sorrento Valley. Chris was only the third Asian American in San Diego’s history elected to the City Council. During his time as Councilmember, Chris was lauded for his solution-oriented approach to public safety, the economy, infrastructure, and civic engagement.

Rabbi Dr. Laurie Coskey

Vice Chancellor of Development & Entrepreneurship, San Diego Community College District
San Diego, Calif.

As a child, Rabbi Dr. Laurie Coskey remembers her mother and father giving of themselves in the community -- trying to create a more just world.  She follows in their footsteps as an accomplished community leader with over 35 years of experience developing and directing programs and collaborations to positively impact the lives of San Diego residents. Today, Laurie is the Vice Chancellor of Development & Entrepreneurship at the San Diego Community College District. She believes that Community colleges are the foremost equity-based institutions in our country and is enthusiastic about removing barriers to students’ success in their education and pursuing their dreams.

Rabbi Laurie has utilized her positions as a leader and clergy to promote some of the most important civil rights of our time. She has passionately and effectively advocated for workers’, immigrants’, women’s and LGBTQIA rights, as well as for racial equity. She spoke at TEDx San Diego about humane immigrant advocacy (https://youtu.be/6Co3dn0nSTk).

Today Laurie is focused on workforce development as the Vice Chancellor of Development and Entrepreneurship at the San Diego Community College District following five years at the College of Continuing Education Foundation and her long-time service as Executive Director of the Interfaith Center for Worker Justice of San Diego County. Her board leadership includes the UCSD Chancellor’s Advisory Board, the Union Tribune Community Advisory Board and the San Diego Convention Center Corporation.

 

Laurie completed her undergraduate studies at Stanford University. She was ordained at Hebrew Union College and earned her doctorate in Leadership Studies at the University of San Diego.

She often quotes the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. that “the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice.” To that she adds “together we are bending it.”

Dwayne Crenshaw

CEO and Co-Founder, RISE San Diego
San Diego, Calif.

Dwayne Crenshaw is a native San Diegan and lifelong resident of southeastern San Diego. His deep knowledge of San Diego’s neighborhoods and his community activism are invaluable in his role as a nonprofit and community leader. As CEO of RISE San Diego, Crenshaw is responsible for the organization’s effective management and operation on a day-to-day basis. He previously served as the executive director of San Diego LGBT Pride and the Coalition of Neighborhood Councils, where he advanced issues of community development and social justice.

Prior to his roles in nonprofit management, Crenshaw had eight years of government experience as an aide to state and local elected officials, including former California Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante. Crenshaw began his public service career as one of eighteen James M. Unruh Assembly Fellows who are chosen from hundreds of applicants each year to serve in the California state capitol. While working in the state capitol, he completed the coursework for a masters in government from California State University, Sacramento.

Tony Cruz

Transportation Policy Manager, San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E); UC San Diego Alum MPA '08
San Diego, Calif.

Tony Cruz is a Clean Transportation Policy Manager at San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) where he works on strategic initiatives and projects to deliver clean, safe, and reliable energy to the San Diego region. Prior to SDG&E, Tony worked for the City of Chula Vista, the U.S. Senate, the House of Representatives, and the South County Economic Development Council. Currently, he serves on the board of directors of the Otay Mesa Chamber of Commerce. Tony grew up in Tijuana, Mexico and moved to the United States to attend UC San Diego. As a lifelong resident of the Tijuana-San Diego region, he is a firm believer in the power of education to improve lives across borders. He is passionate about uplifting people, opening doors for others, and supporting opportunities that further develop the integration of our binational communities. Tony earned his Bachelor of Arts in political science and international relations from UC San Diego in 2008 and a Master of Public Administration from San Diego State University in 2021. He has been a fellow of the San Diego Leadership Alliance and the Clean Energy Leadership Institute.

Joice Truban Curry

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President & CEO of c3 Communications, Inc. (c3)
San Diego, Calif.

Today, Joice creates and leads programs for clients spanning the arts, education, hospitality, tourism, retail, business-to-business, restaurant, consumer product, non-profit, wellness, health care and entertainment industries. A graduate of San Diego State University (SDSU), her creativity, energy and public relations savvy helped grow c3 from a one-person shop into one of San Diego’s most successful long-standing boutique PR agencies.

Before founding c3, Joice worked at Berkman Communications on their executive team and also served as media relations director and national spokesperson for Children’s Hospital and Health Center San Diego (now Rady Children’s Hospital). In addition, rounding out her over nearly 30 years of experience, she worked as a press secretary for the California State Legislature.

Joice is active in the industry and community. She is a two-time past president of the San Diego chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), past chair of the national PRSA Honors and Awards Committee, and has served on many non-profit executive boards. In addition, Joice volunteers for the Red Cross and Salvation Army locally in San Diego. Under her leadership, c3 is a big contributor supporting many local non-profits with pro-bono PR services. Those include the Alzheimer’s Assoc. of San Diego & Imperial Counties, The Rosie Network, The Thumbprint Project Foundation and St. Jude’s, to name a few.

Janessa Goldbeck

Principal, Sui Generis Strategies
San Diego, Calif.

A Marine Corps veteran, Janessa Goldbeck served as a uniformed victim advocate, providing care to service members who experienced sexual assault, and co-founded No Exceptions, an advocacy campaign to repeal gender-based job discrimination policy. Prior to her military service, Goldbeck worked in Washington, D.C., as a human rights advocate, serving as the national field director for Genocide Intervention Network. She led a diverse coalition to build legislative and diplomatic efforts to protect civilians in conflict zones. After ending her military service, Goldbeck ran for an open congressional seat in San Diego, earning the endorsement of members of Congress and The San Diego Union-Tribune.

Goldbeck is a graduate of Northwestern University and is currently pursuing a master of public administration at the University of San Francisco. She is a member of San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria’s Back to Work Task Force housing subcommittee and is an active Rotarian. Goldbeck is a board member of MANA de San Diego, the San Diego LGBT Center, and the Truman National Security Project. In addition, she serves on the Campaigns Board for Victory Fund, on the advisory board of Taking the Hill PAC, and as a delegate to the California Democratic Party for Assembly District 78.

Amón Gordon

Amón Gordon

Founder, Amon Gordon Life Skills Football Camp/NFL Youth Camp
San Diego, Calif.

Amón Gordon is the director of youth development at the Mural Music & Arts Project in East Palo Alto. He is responsible for managing the Youth Leadership Academy including programmatic strategic development and assessments. After graduating from Stanford University in 2004, where he concentrated in Urban Academic Mentorship and Diversity and played Division I football, he signed with the National Football League (NFL) and played professionally for eight years. Gordon founded the Amon Gordon Life Skills Football Camp/NFL Youth Camp in San Diego in 2009 where more than 250 local youth experienced a positive environment of encouragement, a youth network founded in physical education, and life skills encouraging them to grow athletically, personally and spiritually.

Maria Guasp

Maria Guasp

Retiree: Educator and Community Activist
San Diego, Calif.

Maria Guasp is a veteran public-school educator who has been supporting students, families, and educators for more than forty years in both urban and suburban settings. Prior to her appointment as community superintendent in the South Bronx, Guasp held various critical positions including chief executive for instruction, executive director of the division of bilingual education, deputy superintendent, and elementary school principal. Upon her retirement in 2001, she accepted the position of assistant superintendent for instruction in the Chula Vista Elementary School District. From there, she joined the American Institutes for Research and managed Carnegie- and Gates-funded projects designed to improve student achievement. Guasp currently serves as a member of South Bay Community Services, a nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming communities to support the well-being and prosperity of children, youth, and families.

Dr. Divya Kakaiya

Psychologist and Neuroscientist, Founder of Healthy Within
San Diego, Calif.

Divya Kakaiya, Ph.D., M.S.(Psychopharm.) Licensed Psychologist and Neuroscientist, Founder of Healthy Within has been working with families and teens since 1983. Her center Healthy Within, incorporates treatment modalities that are on the cutting edge of brain neurocircuitry and gut-brain axis. As an Integrative Psychologist, she has been utilizing Neurofeedback at her treatment center for the last 12 years and sees tremendous progress with her patients. Her patients range from age 4 to 89 years old. Having a Postdoctoral Degree in Psychopharmacology makes her very knowledgeable about working with all aspects of brain health. She wears numerous hats within the teen world and parenting, ethnic communities and the addiction world. Neurofeedback makes her an expert with Gaming Addictions, Screen Dependencies, Asperger’s, Autism, Concussions, Pain Conditions, Fibromyalgia, ADHD and Learning Disorders. Her role as a Neuroscientist makes her knowledgeable about the effects of trauma, drugs and other neurotoxins on the brain.

Mindfulness, working on regulating the brain in a non-medication way is her specialty. She has published extensively on issues related to South Asian women, brain health and eating disorders. She had a past position as an ad-hoc reviewer for the Journal Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology. She is an avid community volunteer and activist, and has received numerous awards for her service to her community. Among the most notable are the Top Cool Women in San Diego by Girl Scouts and the KPBS Diversity Hero for Asian American Month. Being a Rotarian is a HUGE part of her life and she serves on numerous committees with her San Diego Rotary Club 33.

She serves on the Board of San Diego Crime Stoppers. She is also very active in working with anti-sex trafficking initiatives in San Diego through HT-RADAR. She is actively engaged in the Brain Injury community. Being a graduate of the LEAD Impact Program makes her civically engaged in the San Diego community. She co-founded SAWI, the first program supporting domestic violence in the South Asian community. In the past she has served on the boards of San Diego Psychological Association, IAEDP (Eating Disorders), SDNari, Women's Museum of California and ran the Diversity Committee of SDPA for almost 10 years.

Dr Kakaiya is a highly sought out speaker in the “Teen Brain” arena and her talks are requested over and over again every year. Additionally, she presents to Parent and Professional communities about “The Health and Care of the Adult Brain.” She is highly committed to teaching communities about how to achieve excellent brain health.

Sue Kalish

Sue Kalish

Community Volunteer
La Jolla, Calif.

Sue Kalish has been a community volunteer for more than 35 years, with most of her efforts focused on children and education. She has vast experience working on boards and committees organizing annual fundraising events. She has chaired or co-chaired events for the San Diego Center for Children, St. Germaine Children’s Charity, Barrio Logan College Institute, Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary, UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center, Women Together and the National Conflict Resolution Center. She served as the fundraising co-chair for Project S.P.L.A.S.H. at La Jolla High School. She is also a founding member of the National Cheers Foundation, former president of Las Patronas, former president of the Foundation of La Jolla High School and served on the board of directors for the La Jolla High School Scholarship Foundation, the San Diego Historical Society and the Dan McKinney Family YMCA. Most recently, Kalish served as president of UC San Diego Town & Gown, whose mission is to integrate residents into the life of UC San Diego and support the university through student scholarships.

Henry Krous

Retiree: Professor of Pathology and Pediatrics
San Diego, Calif.

Henry Krous served as the director of pathology, pathology research, and the San Diego SIDS/SUDC Research Project at Rady Children’s Hospital. He was a professor of pathology and pediatrics (now emeritus) at UC San Diego.

Dr. Krous has published more than 200 papers and given more than 100 national and international lectures. His media appearances include “Today,” “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and “CBS Evening News.” Dr. Krous was an invited professor at numerous universities and is the recipient of several awards, including SIDS Lifetime Achievement Award from the California Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Advisory Council, International Society for the Prevention of Infant Death Distinguished Research Award, Research into SIDS Award (Norway) and SIDS and Kids Award (Australia). He was honored with a published symposium “Pathology Symposium in Celebration of the Career of Henry F. Krous, MD” at the International Conference on Stillbirth, SIDS and Infant Survival. Dr. Krous has been a president of the Society for Pediatric Pathology.

Dr. Krous received his medical degree from the University of Nebraska and trained in pathology and pediatric pathology at the University of Washington in Seattle, Washington.

Linda LeGerrette

Linda LeGerrette

Co-Founder and Executive Director, Cesar Chavez Service Clubs
San Diego, Calif.

Linda LeGerrette is blessed to have been dealt a life full of opportunities for serving others. Some of her achievements include confidant and organizer to the late United Farm Workers of America president, Cesar E. Chavez; working with Sol Price in building Price Club’s multi-million-dollar business delivery program; field office director and coordinator of San Diego City School’s successful $1.5 billion school construction bond; and numerous other political and neighborhood campaigns. LeGerrette has served on diverse boards such as the San Diego Civil Service Commission, Middle Class Taxpayers Association, San Diego Transit Board of Directors, Planned Parenthood Action Fund, Mother’s Embracing Nuclear Disarmament (MEND), and Urban Corps of San Diego County. LeGerrette dedicated many years of her life to the campaign of home health care workers and their struggle for collective bargaining rights and respect. Today, as co-founder and executive director of the Cesar Chavez Service Clubs — an organization dedicated to inspiring young people to believe in themselves and to know that they can make a difference — you’ll find LeGerrette performing her many duties as an administrator while still finding ways to be in the classroom teaching leadership and organizational skills necessary to participate in a democratic society. Currently there are 37 Chavez Clubs in 22 of San Diego’s inner-city schools with 900 members (also known as Chavistas).

Dwight Kala Lomayesva

Executive Director and Co-founder, American Indian Recruitment (AIR) Programs
San Diego, Calif.

Dwight K. Lomayesva is the Executive Director and Co-founder of the American Indian Recruitment (AIR) Programs, a non-profit organization that serves underprivileged American Indians within education. Through AIR, he led the development of an academic program that merged both culture and academic understanding to promote educational success within secondary instruction. His continuous push of cultural inclusion and historical relevancy within an academic model has led to self-empowerment, confidence and self-esteem among AIR students which manifests in greater academic performance. His work, along with many, has led to many of our Native Youth flourish within higher education. Dwight earned his Bachelor of Arts degree, within Political Science, at San Diego State University and earned his Juris Doctorate from Western Sierra School of Law. He is a former board member of the San Diego/Imperial Valley ACLU and sits on the Enrollment Management Advisory Council at San Diego State University. Honors include Pacific Sociology Association Social Conscience Award, for AIR Programs, 2009, KPBS Local Hero, San Diego, 2010, and American Indian Community Honoree at the San Diego-Balboa Park Pow-wow, 2014, and in 2018 UPCEA Leadership in Diversity Award that recognizes an individual or a program representing best practices in promoting the educational success of diverse students. Formerly, Dwight served as the Director of Tribal Learning Community & Educational Exchange at the UCLA School of Law from 2012 through 2018, and presently works with Intertribal Court of Southern California in implementation and enhancement of a Tribal Youth Court. Dwight is a member of the Hopi Tribe.

Luis Manuel Monteagudo

San Diego, Calif.

Luis Monteagudo, Jr. is an award-winning and experienced journalist and communicator who has been actively involved in leadership roles in the San Diego community for many years. He previously served as Vice President of Community Relations for 211 San Diego and as Deputy Chief of Staff/Director of Communications for County Board of Supervisors Chairman Greg Cox. During his time with the Supervisor, he helped in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic and served as a policy advisor on many key issues, including public safety and veterans/military affairs. Luis had a distinguished two-decade career in journalism, including as a staff writer with the San Diego Union-Tribune and an editor with USA Today. Luis is active in the community, serving on the board of Media Arts Center San Diego and engaging in volunteer activities

Chris Nielsen

Chris Nielsen

Chair, University Community Planning Group; UC San Diego Alum ’74 and ’77
San Diego, Calif.

Chris Nielsen is the current chair of the University Community Planning Group (UCPG) and a member of the UC San Diego Community Advisory Group (CAG). UCPG is recognized as advisory to the City of San Diego on planning matters and the CAG is a UC San Diego group comprised of local community members in University City and La Jolla, formed to collaborate with the campus on its 2018 Long Range Development Plan. Nielsen’s career has many connections to UC San Diego: as an undergraduate (BA, Mathematics, 1974); graduate student (MA, Applied Mathematics, 1977); staff member (Chemistry/Biology, 1977–1995); small business owner manufacturing products based on research done at UC San Diego; and with community planning activities, continuing as chair of the UCPG and whose plan area includes UC San Diego.

Karmin Noar

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Executive Director, BIOCOM California Institute
San Diego, Calif.

Karmin oversees strategies, programs and staff and drives initiatives focused on STEM education and workforce development. Her priorities include serving job seekers and employers as well as leveraging community partnerships to prepare the emerging workforce for talent and advance the incumbent workers of the life science industry.

Noar has more than a decade of volunteer and work experience in the nonprofit sector, working on issues from public health and education to youth and workforce development. A leader in education and workforce development fields in San Diego, Noar is experienced in building partnerships to provide employers with a highly skilled workforce and expanding access to careers in San Diego’s priority sectors for underrepresented individuals.

Noar holds two bachelor’s degrees in political science and ethnic studies from UC San Diego and a master’s degree in education from Pepperdine University’s Graduate School of Education & Psychology.

Lorraine Orosco (Kumeyaay- Ipai)

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Education Dept Executive Director, San Pasqual Band of Mission Indian | Board Member and the Instructor for Kumeyaay Humanities
San Diego, Calif.

As an alumna of UC San Diego, Lorraine obtained her Bachelor’s in sociology. Lorraine then continued to attain her Master’s in Education; Teacher Education, School Counseling at National University. She also studied General Education, American Indian Studies at Palomar College and DQ University.

Lorraine Orosco, (Kumeyaay-Ipai) is from the San Pasqual Ipai Band and grew up on the San Pasqual reservation. Her teachers (Kwechmuuyaaw) were family, tribal elders and the community. She studied Sociology and Ethnic Studies, BA at UC San Diego and MS in Education.

As director, Lorraine developed an Education Department for the San Pasqual Tribal Community. She is accomplished in grant writing, implementation and administration. She develops and implements comprehensive Tribal K-12 and Kumeyaay Community College educational resources and services, student mentor program, and Cultural Education Program. In addition, Lorraine facilitates and coordinates Sports and Recreation Programs. She is an active partner in the UC San Diego Partnership Research and Language Revitalization Program. The research project was Published by Oxford Research Encyclopedia. Lorraine is also adjunct faculty for Kumeyaay Community College and Cuyamaca Community College.

Sara Osborn

Sara Osborn

Senior Planner, City of San Diego Planning Department
San Diego, Calif.

Sara Osborn is a senior planner for the City of San Diego Planning Department who has managed complex long-range planning and environmental planning projects for over fifteen years. Osborn managed the San Ysidro Community Plan update, a seven-year effort which re-envisioned growth and development opportunities in one of San Diego’s border communities; updated the Fiesta Island concept plan within Mission Bay Park, balancing regional recreation needs with habitat preservation; and was a member of the City of San Diego’s General Plan update team, a plan which received local and national recognition.

Osborn developed operational manuals for the Planning Department, has been a community planner for many communities, manages contracts and consultants, and provides environmental review and CEQA support for the city. She has been active in the San Diego American Planning Association section and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.

Beatriz “Bea” Palmer

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Program Manager, Service Learning & Volunteer Center at MiraCosta.
San Diego, Calif.

Bea is connecting students with non-profit organizations for experiential learning opportunities. Coordinating campus wide service/volunteer opportunities for days of service such as: MLK Day of Service, Cesar Chavez Day of Service, Alternative Spring Break, Make a Difference Day, Summer Service Days, Read Across America, and more! Providing support to faculty who offer service learning as part of their course curriculum. Cultivate ongoing relationships with campus and community, for curricular and co-curricular service opportunities.            

Bea holds a Masters in Sociology from Arizona State University. She attained a dual degree from Azusa Pacific University in Human Development and Liberal Studies, as well as in Liberal Arts and Sciences/Liberal Studies.

Omar Passons

Director, Division of Integrative Services, County of San Diego
San Diego, Calif.

Omar Passons is the director of the County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency’s Office of Homeless Solutions, an office within the Department of Homeless Solutions and Equitable Communities focused on collaborating to end homelessness in San Diego County. This work recognizes the voices of people with lived experiences of homelessness and requires collaborating across governments to help prevent people from experiencing homelessness, to make that experience brief when it happens and help people remain successfully housed.

Before transitioning into workforce and community development, Passons evaluated public health and neighborhood revitalization programs and was a construction and land use attorney. For the past 15 years, he has volunteered in the San Diego region to elevate issues impacting economic equity, homelessness, and creating opportunities for all members of the community to lead lives of dignity. Passons has a master’s degree in public health and a law degree. He grew up in San Diego County’s foster care system and is passionate about ensuring that every child gets a strong start in life.

Pamela Gray Payton

Vice President, Chief Impact and Partnerships Officer, San Diego Foundation (SDF); UC San Diego Alum MSEL '84
San Diego, Calif.

Pamela Gray Payton is vice president, Chief Impact and Partnerships Officer at San Diego Foundation (SDF). Since joining SDF in 2020, Pamela has leaned on her experience as a compassionate leader to guide SDF’s Community Impact team through two consecutive years of record-breaking grantmaking and the innovative implementation of three pillars of the SDF Strategic Plan to advance racial and social justice, foster equity of opportunity and build resilient communities. She plays a critical role as an agent of change in developing cross-sector partnerships and implementing future strategic plans for SDF. Since joining SDF, Pamela and her team have launched several programs, including the Black Community Investment Fund, the Binational Resilience Initiative, the Healthy Children & Families Initiative, Level Up SD and the San Diego Black Homebuyers Program, which is the first program of its kind in California and has helped 35-plus families to date. Pamela directly manages the SDF Black Community Investment Fund which has funded more than $4 million in grants to support initiatives in education, employment, entrepreneurship and homeownership.

Jane Potter

Community Volunteer
La Jolla, Calif.

Jane Potter has been active in San Diego and La Jolla community service and government for over 30 years. As a mayoral appointee, she has been a member of the La Jolla Shores Planned District Ordinance Advisory Board for the last 10 years. Potter also served on the La Jolla Shores Association board of directors and was a member of her neighborhood’s architectural committee. From 2005-2017, she was a director on the board of the Lawrence Family Jewish Community Center. As a volunteer for UC San Diego’s English-in-Action (EIA) Conversation Program, she tutored Korean and Chinese students. Potter served the city of San Diego for over 12 years as a legislative aide and chief of staff for two councilmembers and for Acting Mayor Toni Atkins. Previously, she was a curriculum writer-editor for San Diego City Schools in the English as a second language department and a public information officer for the national office of the U.S. Railroad Retirement Board. Over the last 15 years, she assisted in consulting and managing many local political campaigns. She has been a resident of La Jolla within walking distance of the UC San Diego campus for over 40 years and looks forward to more opportunities to foster relationships with the community and larger region. Potter earned her B.A. in Political Science from Purdue University.

Sofia Salgado Robitaille

Executive Director, Southwestern Community College Foundation; UC San Diego Alum ’92
San Diego, Calif.

Sofia Salgado Robitaille is the executive director for the Southwestern College Foundation, whose mission is to develop and deliver resources for student needs through trusted stewardship of charitable giving and meaningful community partnerships. She leads the foundation’s strategic planning, marketing and operations efforts to promote student success through scholarships and leadership programs. Previously, Robitaille was the executive director for MANA de San Diego, a nonprofit organization that empowers Latinas through education, leadership development, community service and advocacy.

A daughter of immigrant parents, Robitaille was born and raised in El Centro, California, where one in four live in poverty. She is a first-generation college graduate of UC San Diego, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in communications.

Jill Sherman-Warner

Jill Sherman-Warne

Executive Director, Native American Environmental Protection Coalition
San Diego, Calif.

Jill Sherman-Warne is the executive director of the Native American Environmental Protection Coalition (NAEPC). She has been working on environmental issues with Tribal communities in Southern California for over fifteen years but holds a lifetime of tribal experience having grown up on the Hoopa Indian Reservation located in Northern California and serving as an elected Tribal Councilman for her tribe. She worked as the Tribal K–12 Director for seven years before moving to San Diego. For nine years, Jill served as environmental director of the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians. She is the former assistant government manager of the Viejas Band of Kumeyaay Indians. Sherman-Warne received support from the Southern California tribes to serve as a Governor Appointed Commissioner to the California Native American Heritage Commission where she was seated for over fifteen years. Sherman-Warne’s extensive grant writing experience has led to successfully funded projects from ten of the twenty-six federal agencies. A current project includes working with the California Air Resource Board in providing outreach to tribes and tribal communities about Clean Mobility and state offered incentives.

Linda D. Sierra

Senior Vice President, Business Development, Bench International
San Diego, Calif.

With thirty years of experience in the life sciences industry, Linda D. Sierra places vice president and C-level executives into life science companies nationally, championing women and diversity candidates into new roles, including board seats.

As a Latina, and many times the only one at her company, Sierra is passionate about diversity, equity and inclusion and has held several symposia on the subject to raise awareness. She is also an unapologetic advocate and ally for people of color and women in executive leadership. Sierra sits on the newly formed BIOCOM Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Task Force; BIOCOM Institute’s board of directors; Life Science Cares San Diego Advisory Board; and LifeHR Network Board. She is co-chair of the MANA de San Diego Advisory Council and is a member of Women in Bio and Women Give San Diego. Sierra is a founding member of MANA de San Diego’s Latina Success Leadership Program, which was created in partnership with the Center for Creative Leadership and National University and has had more than 250 women go through the career development program. Sierra is a subject matter expert on LinkedIn and networking and builds bridges between the life sciences and the Latino and underrepresented communities.

Jon Sundt

Founder and Chief Visionary Officer, Natural High
La Jolla, Calif.

Jon Sundt is an expert in managed futures and alternative investment strategies and the founder of Altegris Clearing Solutions, LLC, a multibillion-dollar asset manager with over 130 employees. He has been the chief executive officer, president and manager since December 2008. In 2012, Sundt was a recipient of the Institutional Investor Mutual Fund Rising Star award and the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year San Diego award. Sundt was named Investment Advisor magazine’s 2013 Top 25 Industry Leaders and he was honored as a Pioneer of Investing by the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) association. Sundt founded Natural High, a drug prevention non-profit organization that serves over 12,000 teachers and 6 million students in the U.S. and is recognized as a game changer for drug prevention. Sundt was awarded the 2009 Community Alliances for Drug Free Youth Lifetime Achievement award for Natural High. He is an active member of the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) and Vistage. He is serving as the chair of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO) Gold chapter in Rancho Santa Fe. He serves on the boards of Friends of Bethany Hamilton and Addiction Pros. He attended the University of California San Diego with a major in Computer Science and a minor in Economics.

Carl Jude Tsang

Owner and Director, ARYTE Bioscience, LLC; UC San Diego Alum '05
San Diego, Calif.

Carl is the owner and director of ARYTE Bioscience, LLC. A consulting business and laboratory, which specializes in contamination testing and qualification of medical devices and laboratory consumables. He received a bachelor of science degree in BioChemistry & Cellular Biology from UC San Diego’s Eleanor Roosevelt College and has served in numerous alumni volunteer leadership positions with the San Diego Alumni Club, the Asian Pacific-Islander Alumni Council and Chancellor’s Associates Young Alumni.

Vickie E. Turner

Vickie E. Turner

Partner, Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP
San Diego, Calif.

Vickie E. Turner is a partner at Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP and has thirty-eight years of experience in complex litigation matters filed against corporations, with extensive emphasis in the areas of product liability, class actions, general business litigation, and warranty. She was selected as one of California’s top women litigators by the Los Angeles Daily Journal and has been named one of San Diego’s top product liability defense attorneys by San Diego Super Lawyers each year from 2007–2020. She was chosen for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America each year from 2010–2020 in the area of product liability and named the Best Lawyers’ 2012 and 2018 Lawyer of the Year for Product Liability Litigation - Defendants, San Diego. She has been selected as one of the top twenty-five women attorneys in San Diego numerous times. She was also honored by Union Bank and KPBS as a “local hero” for her community service and as the 2015 Woman of the Year for the California 79th Assembly District. Ms. Turner is an adjunct professor at California Western School of Law and the University of San Diego School of Law.

Danitza Villanueva

Owner, Giving Back Magazine
San Diego, Calif.

Danitza Villanueva is a self-motivated and dedicated businesswoman. Born in San Diego, she spent part of her youth with her family in Tijuana and grew up on both sides of the border. Danitza publishes several successful magazines including Giving Back Magazine, which focuses on charities, culture, and arts in the San Diego and Tijuana region. She has been involved with various community organizations such as HOPE, Access to Independence, San Diego Humane Society, and the Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego.

Susana Villegas

Susana Villegas

President, SVPR Communications
Mount Helix, Calif.

Susana Villegas is president of SVPR Communications, an award-winning public relations firm specializing in strategic English- and Spanish-language communications and media services, crisis management, and community stakeholder engagement. Her firm helps clients in K–12 education, water, tourism, energy, economic development, cross-border commerce, news media, government, and affordable housing. Villegas has served as policy advisor to a former San Diego city council president and has coordinated over a dozen campaigns for school board, city council, mayor, state assembly, and ballot propositions. She has a degree in communication sciences from the Universidad del Valle. Villegas also serves on the board of directors of the Barrio Logan College Institute, Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center, the Chula Vista Chamber of Commerce, and the Chula Vista Charitable Foundation.

Matthew R. Vokoun

Vice President, Google
San Diego, Calif.

Matt is a Vice President at Google, where he leads the Strategy and Business Operations team for the Devices & Services Product Area. Prior to this role, Matt was the integration and strategy lead for Google’s acquisition of Fitbit, as well as the Ecosystem and Privacy product management lead for Fitbit. Before that, Matt led the product management and business efforts for Google’s Pixelbook laptop product line. Matt joined Google in 2009 on the Business Operations and Strategy team where he led strategy and operational improvement projects across the company, including growth strategies for Android, improving Google's global data center supply chain, and large product and organizational strategy efforts for Google’s hardware division, robotics efforts, and access initiatives. Matt was also heavily involved in Google’s acquisition of Motorola Mobility, where he led integration planning for the acquisition and was then a senior member of the subsidiary's management team as the VP of Strategy and the General Manager / VP of Product Management of the Companion Products business unit. Matt attended the University of Wisconsin for his undergrad where he received his BS Chemical Engineering in 1998. He began his career in engineering roles at 3M, i2 Technologies, and Model E (an internet startup). He then attended MIT’s Leaders for Global Operations program where he received his MBA and MS Chemical Engineering degrees in 2005. After MIT and before Google, Matt spent four years at Bain & Company where he consulted with high tech and private equity clients throughout Silicon Valley. Matt relocated from Silicon Valley to San Diego in 2021 with his wife Reena and two sons Shaan and Ajay. Matt is very active in local youth sports for his sons, and he also serves on the several advisory boards at the University of Wisconsin, Northwestern, and UC-San Diego.

Lori Walton

Philanthropy Editor, Giving Back Magazine
San Diego, Calif.

Lori Walton has served on 15 different boards and chaired 26 fundraisers. Some of her local interests include Barrio Logan College Institute, Freedom Dogs, Junior Achievement, Monarch School, National Conflict Resolution Center, San Diego Public Library, San Diego Symphony, Spay Neuter Action Project, Timken Museum and USO.

As Giving Back’s philanthropy editor, each week Walton features a different hometown hero as part of their Feel Good Friday e-newsletter.

Judith A. Wenker

Judith A. Wenker

Community Volunteer
San Diego, Calif.

Judith A. Wenker is a retired attorney with more than 30 years’ experience representing the government and the oil industry, primarily on environmental issues. She graduated from University of San Diego Law School while working for a federal magistrate full time in 1976. She was also an instructor in the paralegal school at USD and the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at San Diego State University. She serves and has served on many nonprofit boards, including the Elementary Institute of Science (EIS), ElderHelp of San Diego (EHSD), Alzheimer’s San Diego, Neighborhood House Association (NHA) and the San Diego Library Foundation. She served as chair of the NHA, EIS and EHSD Boards. Wenker also served on the Managed Competition Independent Review Board for the city of San Diego.

Jim C. Wyrtzen

Jim C. Wyrtzen

Past President, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UC San Diego
San Diego, Calif.

Jim C. Wyrtzen worked as a committee member at the UC San Diego-Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. He served as president of Osher for two terms and still remains an active participant. He works extremely well with teams, is a driven single contributor to projects, and he is an ordained minister as well as a licensed therapist.

Wyrtzen has received recognitions from the Metro Chapter of the New York Association Marriage and Family Therapy, from the Blanton-Peale Graduate Institute, and from the UC San Diego-Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. He has also received awards such as the Cora Doster Homiletics Prize.

*Executive committee member

For more information on CCAB, contact Roberta Camarena, Director, Chancellor's Community Relations, at rcamarena@ucsd.edu or (858) 761-6093.