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Officers

Laura FerrettiLAURA FERRETTI
Board Co-Chair, LA Chapter AiP
Founder, Impact Philanthropy

Laura’s community philanthropy experience brings together strategy and impact. She has led fundraising teams at the Fulfillment Fund and United Way of Greater Los Angeles, realizing significant revenue growth at both organizations. Through her consulting firm, Impact Philanthropy, Laura has worked with over 40 local, national and international nonprofit organizations and foundations with an approach that is results-oriented: making clear the connection between mission and money, and the respective roles that staff and board members play in building resilient organizations. Impact Philanthropy helps to build more effective nonprofit organizations through: • strategic planning • fundraising advising • executive search services • as well as by providing grantmaking counsel to family foundations. 


HEATHER MASON
Board Co-Chair, LA Chapter AiP
Founder & CEO, A Caspian Production

Heather Mason is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of A Caspian Production. Under Heather's leadership, her firm has become an industry leader for producing conferences internationally for the business space, such as the annual Skoll World Forum. Other clients include the Omidyar Network, Participant Media and Endeavor Global, along with many others in the social good space. Her firm also provides high quality events training based on the 'Caspian 10 Essentials,' which she has presented at Oxford, Swansea and the Claremont Lincoln universities.

 

 

 

Jennifer FarrJENNIFER FARR, CPA
Board Member & Treasurer, LA Chapter AiP
Managing Director, CBIZ MHM, LLC

Jennifer Farr is a Managing Director of CBIZ MHM and Shareholder of Mayer Hoffman McCann P.C. She is responsible for the firm’s nonprofit and private foundation audit and tax practices in Los Angeles and Orange County. Combining her talents for business and tax issues with her desire to contribute and support causes in the community, she has worked with nonprofit organizations for 15 years to help them develop sound accounting practices and ensure compliance with laws and regulations. Jennifer is the Chair of the United Way of Orange County’s Financial Review Committee and is a Member of the United Way’s Community Investment Cabinet. Jennifer is also actively involved in the CBIZ Women’s Advantage initative, is on the editorial board for the CBIZ MHM national nonprofit newsletter, and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.


Voting Board Members

Darya Allen-AttarDARYA ALLEN-ATTAR
Financial Advisor
Morgan Stanley, LLC
 

Darya Allen-Attar is a Financial Advisor at Morgan Stanley, LLC, where she has spent almost 18 years of her career.  Darya focuses on Strategic Wealth Management for high net worth families, nonprofits, foundations and endowments. Her investment process draws upon her knowledge of asset allocation, investment management, and income and estate tax issues and structures. As a Financial Advisor to family wealth and/or foundation and endowment clients, Darya brings a wealth of knowledge of the investment markets, 23 years of experience in financial services, and draws on the significant institutional and consulting resources of Morgan Stanley.  


Michael Berry

 MICHAEL D. BERRY, CPA

Michael Berry has been in public accounting for over 35 years with 4 different CPA firms, the last 28 plus years with Rothstein Kass, a national firm. He just started his own CPA practice in Culver City focusing primarily in the area of tax exempt organizations and charitable giving matters. At his time with Rothstein Kass and the other firms he was with, Mike served a variety of clients in tax, accounting, and financial matters. He has extensive tax experience in the exempt organization (both private foundations and public charities) and charitable giving areas. In addition, he has substantial tax experience with trusts, financial services, and the real estate industries as well with individual taxation. Mr. Berry is a member of the American Institute of CPAs, the California Society of CPAs, Beverly Hills Estate Planning Council (in which he was a recent board member), and Partnership for Philanthropic Planning (Los Angeles Chapter).


REGINA BIRDSELL
President & CEO
SoCal Center for Nonprofit Management

Regina Birdsell has been a marketing and communications executive within the corporate, nonprofit and public sectors for over 20 years. After graduating from USC, she began her career at Eyewitness News in Los Angeles, served as press secretary for California’s Attorney General, worked to build the Public Affairs office at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, ran the New Los Angeles Marketing Partnership in collaboration with Mayor Riordan and corporate leaders throughout region and was later appointed by the Governor to be a consumer advocate. In 2006 she became the president of the Southern California Center for Nonprofit Management. The organization provides management and leadership education and coaching for thousands of nonprofit executives and volunteers every year.

 

DAVID FRIEDMAN
Executive Director
John N. Calley Foundation

David Friedman was born in Toronto, Canada, and raised in Columbus, Ohio. After completing high school in the midwest, David moved to Jerusalem for a year to study ancient Hebrew text and law before heading to the University of Michigan, where he received a B.A. in English and Political Science. While in college, David founded two magazines, both of which are still in running: 12th Street and Consider Magazine. Post-graduation, he moved to San Francisco to work for the 49ers in their Special Teams division, where he worked on finance and helped to secure a $1.2 billion loan for the new stadium development. 

David currently lives in Venice, California, and serves as Executive Director of the John N. Calley Foundation, a private family foundation that strives to create opportunities for underserved youth in the LA area. Much of his time has been spent in high-end asset liquidation but is now in the thick of the strategic planning process.

 

Rafael GonzalezRAFAEL GONZÁLEZ
Director of Best Start
First 5 LA


Rafael González serves as Director of Best Start Communities for First 5 LA. He is responsible for implementing Best Start's "Building Stronger Families" framework and community capacity building efforts to strengthen families and promote family-supporting communities that contribute to better outcomes for children.  Rafael has worked in the spheres of community development, local government, corporate philanthropy, national service, civic engagement, civil rights, immigrant integration and youth development. He shares a common belief with others in the place-based field that by investing in the capacity of our families and the social infrastructure to support them, and by working from the inside out, that parents and other critical community stakeholders will improve the social conditions that impact their neighborhoods. With the proper alignment of services and collaborative systems in place, families can have a collective impact on the change we all seek.

 

JENNIFER KENNING
Managing Director
Align: Your Impact Partner

After serving high net-worth individuals and families since 2001 as a lead advisor in the family office space, I am combining my passion and skill set in advising individuals, multi-generational families, and foundations in building strategic philanthropic and impact missions that tie their values and goals to both grants, investments and measuring the impact of both. Building 100% Impact portfolios across all asset classes.


Baruch LittmanBARUCH S. LITTMAN
Vice President, Development
Jewish Community Foundation Los Angeles

With more than 30 years of development and marketing experience, Baruch Littman aims to increase the assets of The Foundation. Prior to joining The Foundation in 1999, he served as executive director of The California-Israel Chamber of Commerce.

His career includes senior positions at The Jewish Federation of Los Angeles and the American Nurses Association, as well as senior marketing and management positions at both Fortune 100 and 500 corporations. Littman earned his bachelor of science degree from Long Island University and his master of science degree from The City University of New York.

 

Julie LytleJULIE LYTLE NESBIT
Vice President and Director, Philanthropic Services
South Pasadena Office

Julie is a Vice President and the Director of the firm's Philanthropic Services Department. She oversees all foundation advisement, administration and grant-making activities for the trust, private foundation, endowment and not-for-profit clients of the Whittier Trust Company. Julie joins WTC with over 25 years of experience in the financial services and high tech worlds. For thirteen of the past fifteen years, she was a Partner with the Los Angeles office of Ernst & Young, LLP. While there, she held a number of operating and leadership positions working with numerous private and Fortune 250 clients.

   

Elizabeth StewartELIZABETH STEWART
Co-Founder & Managing Partner
The Hub LA

For the last ten years Elizabeth has worked on environmental and social sustainability, with a particular emphasis on water, energy, and social enterprise models. Elizabeth is the founding director of Causemopolis, a collaborative firm focused on developing infrastructure that furthers the integration of environmental, social, and economic considerations to create vibrant urban places worldwide. Her most recent consulting work focused on using collaborative consumption models to generate living-wage jobs in the green economy. Specifically, she has spent the last two years developing a social enterprise that provides a market-based solution for scaling residential and commercial energy efficiency retrofits. She has also advised clean tech and community-oriented technology start-ups.

Domestically, she has also worked on sustainable economic development, analyzing the impact of recent green manufacturing and green building trends on jobs, small businesses, and urban sustainability in LA.

 

Catherine SuitorCATHERINE SUITOR
Chief Development & Communications Officer
Alliance College Ready Public Schools

Catherine Suitor oversees development and communications for the Alliance and its family of schools. Prior to joining the Alliance, she was Vice President of Development for the United Way of Greater Los Angeles, where she was responsible for raising $55 million annually for community change initiatives in Los Angeles County. Previously, Ms. Suitor created an endowment and a ten-fold growth in annual income as Director of Development for the Liberty Hill Foundation, and raised unprecedented funds and awareness as Director of Development for the Central American Resource Center prior to that. She began her career in advocacy, having organized human rights awareness campaigns for the people of El Salvador. Ms. Suitor currently serves on the Board of Southern California Leadership Network. She has also served as a board and committee member for the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, the Center for the Study of Political Graphics and New Roads School.


JEFF WESTON
Financial Advisor
Morgan Stanley Wealth Management

Jeff Weston is a Financial Advisor with Morgan Stanley Wealth Management. He has a diverse background which provides him with the distinct perspective to serve individuals pursuing a range of financial goals. His experience includes international and real estate investment, social enterprise and nonprofit management.

Jeff obtained his MBA from Georgetown University's McDonough School of Business. During his MBA, he was a Packard Fellow with The Nature Conservancy and performed research for Microvest Capital, an investor in microfinance. He was a leader in Georgetown's Net Impact Chapter and put on numerous events related to impact investing and other social impact-related issues. He also designed and led Georgetown's first course on impact and began efforts to create a student-led social venture fund. Jeff obtained his undergraduate degree from University of Pennsylvania.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

David WolfDAVID WOLF
Executive Director, Planned & Major Gifts
University of California, Los Angeles

David Wolf currently serves as Executive Director for Planned and Major Gifts at UCLA, leading both complex and progressive efforts to integrate and expand major gift opportunities through strategic gift planning and other major gift initiatives. Prior to UCLA, Wolf served as Vice President for Advancement at the University of Southern Mississippi where he reorganized the university’s advancement office and led the campus to all time highs in dollars raised, donor participation, and alumni participation.

 

Advisory Board Members


 

Kafi BlumenfieldKAFI D. BLUMENFIELD

Kafi D. Blumenfield has two decades of experience as an advocate for social change working to improve the well-being and civic engagement of disenfranchised communities. Between 2007 and 2013, she served as Liberty Hill Foundation's President and CEO during which time she strengthened the foundation's investment in community leaders on the frontlines of change by launching innovative programs including the Brothers, Sons, Selves initiative to improve the wefare of low-income young men of color in Los Angeles and the Wally Marks Leadership Institute for Change, an intensive on-the-job training for community organizers. She has also initiated special programs to increase donor diversity in philanthropy and put together a strategic refocusing of nearly $5 million in annual grant investments. Ms. Blumenfield was appointed to the California Commission on the Status of Women by Speaker John Perez. She serves on the boards of Tides, ARC, Southern California Grantmakers, Association of Black Foundation Executives and Planned Parenthood Advocacy Project in Los Angeles and is a member of the advisory board of the Los Angeles River Revitalization Corporation. Ms. Blumenfield is a member of the selection committee for the James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards.


Ofer LionOFER LION
Tax Partner
Seyfarth Shaw LLP

Ofer Lion is a tax partner in the Corporate department of Seyfarth Shaw LLP. He has represented nonprofits and tax-exempt organizations in a wide range of tax, transactional, corporate, governance and fiduciary matters, including formation, mergers and acquisitions, executive compensation, international activities and affiliations, unrelated business taxable income, joint ventures, program-related investments, political activities and lobbying, audits and tax controversies, tax return review, tax-exempt bonds and dissolutions.  He has extensively represented companies in all aspects of transactional tax matters, including mergers and acquisitions (domestic and cross-border taxable transactions, tax-free spin-offs, Section 351 transactions and corporate reorganizations), equity and debt securities finance, partnerships and private equity funds, real estate investment trusts (REITs), bankruptcy reorganizations, debt restructurings and state and local tax issues.

Ofer has been quoted as a tax-exempt organizations authority in numerous news stories, including on NPR, by the Associated Press and in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, Tax Analysts, The Huffington Post, Forbes.com and Politico.com. He has taught “Tax-Exempt Organizations: Law and Practice” as an adjunct professor at the UCLA School  of Law. 


 

Joseph LumardaJOSEPH M. LUMARDA
Senior Vice President & Investment Counselor
Capital Group Private Client Services

Joseph M. Lumarda is a senior vice president and investment counselor for Capital Group Private Client Services division and a vice president of Capital Guardian Trust Company, a Nevada Corporation. Capital Group Private Client Services provides investment management and financial planning services for individuals, families, trusts, foundations and nonprofit institutions.

Prior to joining Capital, Mr. Lumarda spent 16 years at the California Community Foundation as a program officer, vice president for development and executive vice president and chief operating officer. During that time, he also served as an independent director for Capital Research and Management Company’s Endowment funds, a series of investment portfolios designed exclusively for nonprofit organizations. Before that, he spent three years active duty and five years in the reserves with the U.S. Navy as a lieutenant and naval flight officer on the P3 Orion anti-submarine warfare aircraft.


 

 

Sylia ObagiSYLIA OBAGI
Executive Director
Roy & Patricia Disney Family Foundation

Sylia Obagi serves as the Executive Director of the Roy & Patricia Disney Family Foundation, one of the newest family foundations in Los Angeles. Sylia is currently leading the 16-member board of directors through a strategic planning process to establish the organization's mission, vision, grantmaking priorities, next generation leadership, and to position the organization as a nimble, catalytic, and strategic sector-level partner with community stakeholders. Prior to this role, she served as the second most senior executive at the Annenberg Foundation as the Director of Programs & Operations. Previously, Sylia served as Vice President of the Community College Foundation (CCF) where she led the largest division, providing social service programs at 50 community colleges and serving over 15,000 individuals and families each year. Prior to CCF, Sylia worked as a CPA with Arthur Andersen for five years.

Sylia serves on the board of Southern California Grantmakers, and on the advisory boards of Grantmakers for Effective Organizations, REDF, and the LA chapter of Advisors in Philanthropy.  She is a certified governance trainer with BoardSource and volunteers her time as a coach and mentor for nonprofit organizations. She earned her MBA from UCLA’s Anderson School of Management and her undergraduate degree in Business Administration and Accounting from California State University, Northridge. 


Kent SetonKENT E. SETON, Esq.
Managing Partner
Seton & Associates, PLC

Kent E. Seton, Esq., an entrepreneur at heart, started his law career simultaneously with the launch of a separate online venture that quickly grew into one of the largest nationwide providers preparing the paperwork for creating 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations. At its height, this online company was forming over 200 501(c)(3) organizations per month. At the same time, he also steadily grew his transactional law practice in the Beverly Hills and outlying areas, and has become one of the foremost attorneys representing charities.

He also lends his experience to social entrepreneurs by advising them as they form and structure new businesses. Kent rejects the idea of "one size fits all" and works with each client separately to develop legal solutions tailored to meet their specific legal and business needs. In addition to speaking regularly on a variety of topics, he also spearheaded a complimentary periodic event featuring some of the most advanced thinkers in the nonprofit sector for the benefit of sharing resources, information and networking in the Los Angeles Area. He also enjoys lecturing on subjects including "social entrepreneurism," collaborations, mergers and acquisitions in the nonprofit sector, strategies for donors and fundraisers, and "hybrid" entities.


Erin TanenbaumERIN TANENBAUM
Associate Director, Business & Program Development
Milken Institute

Erin Tanenbaum is Director of Programs at the Southern California Leadership Network (SCLN), overseeing the development of creative and timely content and the identification and recruitment of speakers for SCLN Fellowhips. Prior to joining SCLN, she designed and managed projects and initiatives at the Milken Institute, working on issues ranging from aging to global healthy to food security to enhancing job growth in California. Tanenbaum began her career in the nonprofit sector running summer respite programs in Croatia for children who survived the Bosnian war. Since then, she has developed programs, raised support and overseen operations for both international and domestic nonprofit organizations, such as the California Community Foundation, International Medical Corps, Southern California Grantmakers and the Venice Family Clinic. For more than 15 years, Tanenbaum has dedicated her career to providing leaders from the public, private and community sectors with opportunities to best leverage their human and financial resources as stewards of change.

 

 

 

Reg WilsonREG WILSON

Founder & President (2010–2011)
Los Angeles Philanthropic Advisors Network (LA-PAN)

Reg and his wife, Gina Ross, founded the International Trauma Institute a decade ago bringing solutions to societal trauma of nations and communities suffering from war, terror, displacement and natural disasters. He has served as financial advisor to domestic and international families for over three decades and speaks frequently on issues of legacy and philanthropy.

 

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