We’re thrilled to announce our 6th WIL Cohort!
Superintendent of Recreation and Parks Operations-Emergency Operations and Citywide Aquatics for the City of Los Angeles
Brenda Aguirre is currently serving the City of Los Angeles as Superintendent of Operations overseeing the Emergency Management and Citywide Aquatics divisions for the Department of Recreation and Parks. Brenda works to promote social and gender equity in recreation as well as fosters an environment of inclusion for children of all abilities. Prior to working as Superintendent Brenda helped lead the Mass Care and Shelter Arm of the City of Los Angeles assisting in times of crisis such as wildland fires, floods, and most recently during the COVID-19 pandemic. She has over 15 years of community liaison experience assisting with both film production and homeless-related issues in parks. Brenda also serves as a Board of Governor for the Engineers and Architects Association an employee union where she advocates for benefits and oversees the fiduciary obligations of the organization. Brenda has an MPA from the University of La Verne along with degrees in Organizational Management and Human Resources. Brenda leverages her numerous roles and educational experience to help employees feel confident, empowered, and motivated to serve their City. Brenda looks forward to exploring new ideas and perspectives with the women in Coro’s leadership program which come from a wide variety of backgrounds and industries.
Founding Director, Feed Black Futures
Ali Anderson is a doula, organizer, and public health professional who has worked in harm reduction, sexual and reproductive health, and food justice for over ten years. Ali graduated from the University of Southern California with her Bachelors of Science in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention and received her Masters in Public Health from Emory University with a focus on Maternal and Child Health. She founded Feed Black Futures after the global pandemic relocated her from farming and organizing work in Jamaica to her family’s home in Southern California. Inspired by global mutual aid and food sovereignty efforts, she saw a need to continue to work in spaces committed to dismantling oppressive systems and create support and nourishment for Black families most directly impacted by COVID-19, food apartheid, and state violence.
Senior Advisor, Southern California Edison, Local Public Affairs
Arcelia brings 20 years of experience spanning the public, private and non-profit sectors to her work at Southern California Edison. She currently serves as a Senior Advisor in Local Public Affairs where she is leading public affairs strategies to advance internal and external programs and projects for the company. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for DIY Girls, a non-profit focused on increasing girls’ interest and success in technology, engineering, and making through innovative educational experiences and mentor relationships. She earned her Masters in Public Administration from the Price School of Public Policy at the University of Southern California and her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Chicano Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Arcelia looks forward to the introspection that comes with a program such as this, as well as working with her fellow cohort to develop skills for leading during difficult times.
Compliance Reporting Project Manager, Southern California Gas Company
Leticia Ayala is the Project Manager for Integrity Management and Strategic Planning – Compliance Reporting at Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas). She has extensive process engineering experience in the consumer product, chemical, industrial gas, and natural gas industries. Before transitioning into her current role, Leticia was with the SoCalGas’ Customer Programs Policy and Programs teams. Leticia holds BS and MS degrees in Chemical Engineering from UCLA and the University of Texas at Austin. In addition, she earned her MS in Counseling from California State University, Long Beach. Leticia looks forward to engaging with her WIL cohort and further developing her leadership style.
Director, Communications and Marketing, Para Los Niños
As Director, Communications and Marketing, Christina is responsible for telling the Para Los Niños’ story to external and internal audiences of the organization. She manages and builds strategic communication plans and fundraising events to expand the presence and impact of the organization in Los Angeles. Prior to this role, Christina was Associate Director of Communications and Special Events at Christopher House, in Chicago, IL, where she oversaw all external communications as it relates to fundraising and managed all donor events. Christina has over ten years of fundraising and communication experience, starting in the Marketing Department at the Cincinnati Art Museum. There Christina developed her passion for connecting people to art and education and has continued to hone her skills and support non-profits in their ability to reach fundraising goals and develop clear branded communications. She looks forward to sharing these skills, and learning so much more working and engaging with the CORO Women in Leadership Fellowship. Christina holds a B.A. from the University of Cincinnati, McMicken College, and School of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning. She enjoys hikes on the weekend with her husband and daughter.
Career Counselor, Scripps College
Skukura is a career counselor at Scripps College. In her role, she conducts student and alum counseling appointments, facilitates career-related workshops, and manages a professional development program. She also serves as the pre-health liaison and supervises student staff. Additionally, she served on the Committee for Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity to support BIPOC students. She is strongly committed to advocate and support people of marginalized identities in her role. Through her work in Higher Ed, she discovered her passion for helping students find their own passion and develop the skills they need to land their dream job. Skukura is excited to join the WIL program because it will help her learn how to create change and advocate for people with marginalized identities through educational policies. She is eager to learn about different leadership styles from others in senior roles and how to further develop her own style so that she can work more effectively with diverse students and supervising staff. She is also excited to build community with her fellow cohort members. Skukura earned her BA in Psychology and MS in Counseling.
Former Director of Service Learning, Brentwood Lower School
Lisa Glick is an educator committed to bridging the gap between the public and private sectors in Los Angeles. Lisa’s professional roots are in the nonprofit space where she’s worked for a number of organizations including the Constitutional Rights Foundation helping to develop civic participation curricula that facilitate collaboration between youth and community leaders to effect positive change. Lisa then went on to create and direct the Lower School Service Learning Program at Brentwood School, a K-12 independent school in Los Angeles. In this capacity, she partnered with a host of nonprofit organizations and has taught hundreds of young people to be active participants in their communities. After 24 years Lisa left Brentwood this past spring to explore new opportunities in the social sector. Lisa earned her BA (English/History) from Tufts University and her MA (History) at U.C.L.A. She is excited to participate in Coro’s Women in Leadership Program and looks forward to collaborating with a cohort of civically engaged female leaders.
Senior Regional Planner, Southern California Association of Governments, Mobility Planning & Goods Movement Department
Hannah Keyes is a Senior Regional Planner at the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG). In this role, she is responsible for the organization’s active transportation planning and programming, including the award-winning Active Transportation Database. Prior to joining SCAG, Hannah worked as a planning consultant with NBBJ Design and as a transportation planner with the Seattle Department of Transportation. Outside of work Hannah is very involved in her community and sat on the board of Lake Washington Girls Middle School where she advocated for expanded mentorship opportunities. Born and raised in Seattle, Hannah graduated with a degree in Community, Environment, and Planning from the University of Washington’s College of Built Environments. Through her participation in the CORO Women in Leadership Program, she strives to expand her leadership skills and capacity and to engage deeply with other program participants.
Government Relations Manager, Southern California Edison
Kelley Lee serves as Government Relations Manager for Southern California Edison where she manages external engagement in South Orange County and the County of Orange. She prides herself on collaborating with diverse stakeholders to build coalitions, educate stakeholders about SCE policy priorities and resolve escalated issues. Prior to working for Edison, Kelley’s passion for public service contributed to her serving for fifteen years at the state and county levels of government. She enjoys mentoring young women on finding their career paths. Kelley holds a Bachelor’s in Political Science from California Polytechnic University, Pomona, and a Master of Public Administration from California State University, Long Beach. She is ecstatic to join the Coro Women in Leadership program where she hopes to enhance her leadership skills and build relationships with women across industry sectors that empower each other.
Chief Operating Officer, Comp Sci High School
Estefany Lopez is an Operations expert and consultant, most notably co-founding and co-designing Comp Sci High and advising the Earl Monroe New Renaissance Basketball School (both in the Bronx). Her work is all about seamless people, systems, and organization integration, ensuring people are positioned to do their best work with policies that support their growth, development, and safety. She’s an operations, talent acquisition and student recruitment, and school design expert. Her work is centered on positioning people to do what they do best for the populations that need them most.
Grants Associate, Community Partners
Lana is a research administration professional with expertise in qualitative and quantitative methods, cross-disciplinary collaboration, program execution, and process improvement. She is currently a Grants Associate at Community Partners (CP), where she manages a portfolio of 250+ grants and revenue contracts supporting 40+ nonprofit projects serving Los Angeles and beyond. Prior to CP, she oversaw operations for computational bioscience research projects and educational programs. She is known for grasping complex problems then designing and implementing straightforward solutions. Lana holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology from UCLA, completed archaeology research projects in Texas, California, and Panama, and has taught courses at Santa Monica College and UCLA. She always finds joy in using an anthropological lens to further explore her interests in organizational culture, science and technology, and media. Lana is excited to identify common threads in her eclectic professional experiences that can be leveraged to better serve her colleagues and community.
Program Officer II, First 5 LA
Natasha Moise was raised by a single mother that instilled in her a strong sense of family, fairness, and civic responsibility, which has led Natasha down a unique career path with amazing opportunities to help others. Before joining First 5 LA, Natasha worked with the Black AIDS Institute as an HIV/AIDS advocate, and the Mobilization Manager promoting awareness about resources available to men and women of color across the country, spearheading the Test 1 Million Campaign to reduce the stigma of HIV/AIDS in communities of color across the country. Currently, as a Program Officer in the Communities Department for Region 4 and the Built Environment strategy, Natasha focuses on a Healthy Food Access portfolio that includes the Market Match Incentive Program, a program that helps to increase healthy food options for families to reduce childhood obesity across Los Angeles County. In her spare time, Natasha volunteers at the Downtown Women’s Center in Los Angeles. Natasha also started a food blog documenting LA’s exciting food scene. Natasha is a graduate of Northeastern University in Boston, MA.
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Impact Analyst, UCLA, Government and Community Relations
Amelia Padilla joined the UCLA Government and Community team in the spring of 2005. In her current role, Amelia is the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Campus Impact Analyst. Drawing on 17 years of data visualization and cartographic experience, Amelia crafts elegant designs that align user needs, data development, and visual literacy. She has extensive experience interacting with a broad range of policymakers, including the California legislature, countless campus departments, and community programs. In her capacity as an Impact Analyst, she works on amplifying the numerous ways in which students, staff, and faculty contribute to improving the lives and livelihoods of our communities every day. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Geography from California State University Long Beach. She looks forward to improving her skills to lead effectively and networking with like-minded women leaders through the Coro Women in Leadership program.
Communications Manager, Community Partners
Elisa is the Communications Manager for Community Partners, an $80MM nonprofit organization in Los Angeles, where she leads its internal and external communications. She creates accessible and effective communications that serve its diverse 1000+ employees and elevates the impact of its fiscally sponsored projects and partnerships with foundations, government, and private corporations. She also co-leads the communications strategy for the Green Together Collaborative, a $23 MM initiative working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Pacoima. A lover of storytelling, Elisa earned her B.A. in Narrative Film Production and began her career working in film development for major studios, television production, and publicity. After completing a journalism fellowship with USC Annenberg’s Reporter Corps, she gained a passion for community engagement within marginalized communities, which led her to the nonprofit sector. As a Women in Leadership program participant, Elisa looks forward to sharpening her leadership skills and connecting with fellow program participants.
Vice President of Operations, Ylopo, LLC
Ashley Sipchen is the Vice President of Operations for Ylopo, LLC, a real estate technology company based in Santa Monica. She has served in leadership roles at technology companies for the last 14 years, including in HRIS, real estate technology, and campus life administration technology. Ashley is also a member of the Board of Directors for the Los Angeles non-profit organization Mount Washington Preschool and Child Care Centers, which is dedicated to providing high-quality, affordable child care in Los Angeles. Ashley received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Wellesley College with a dual degree in History and Medieval & Renaissance Studies. She currently resides in Santa Fe, NM but her roots are in Los Angeles and she frequently travels to LA for work and family.
Director of Originations, Thomas Safran & Associates
Emily has spent more than a decade sourcing, designing, and financing new projects for regional affordable housing developers across Southern and Central California. Having started her career as an architect, she subsequently received two Master’s Degrees in Urban Planning and Real Estate Development from the University of Southern California. She prides herself in her commitment to nuanced design, creative problem-solving, and thoughtful community-building. She cares deeply about the communities in which she builds and the residents who will live in and around her projects. She strives to push the limit of her industry and is proud to learn and grow alongside her teammates.
Senior Director, UCLA Alumni Affairs
Kristine Werlinich is Senior Director of Regional Alumni Networks, Affinity Networks, and Future Bruin Initiatives at UCLA Alumni Association. The breadth of her experience demonstrates a solid record of increased leadership responsibility including building and sustaining networks domestically and internationally, leading the partnership with admissions around alumni engagement with the recruitment of new students and directing significant change management of the Alumni Scholars Program. The Affinity networks were recently added to her portfolio and consist of 14 networks including the Transfer network, First Generation network, and Veterans Network, in addition to other groups that unite around a common purpose and passion. Previous to her current role, she served on the development team at the UCLA School of Law for 13 years and provided extensive opportunities and experience for UCLA Law alumni. Kristine is on the management team at the UCLA Alumni Association and continues to strengthen the programs she oversees.