We’re thrilled to announce our sixth Lead LA cohort!
Aaron Sanchez Robles
Aaron Sanchez is a Sr. Manager at Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LA Metro). In his current role, he is responsible for development and management of the agency’s workforce data and analytics. In his free time, Aaron is a passionate soccer player/fan, enjoys Olympic lifting, and loves to travel. By participating in the Coro program, Aaron hopes to collaborate with other like minded leaders and professionals, expanding his network and allowing him to consider the broader impact of his decisions on society and his Agency. He hopes it will give him insights to prioritize sustainable practices, incorporate corporate social responsibility, and contribute positively to addressing social and environmental challenges.
Associate Director of Advancement
LA Promise Fund
Alex is dedicated to working in underserved areas to create pathways for youth to succeed and be empowered. Alex has made it a goal of his to help improve opportunities for marginalized communities through different programming, partnerships, and education.
After receiving his BA from the University of California, Santa Cruz , he gained his Master’s in Science of Social Entrepreneurship from USC. From educating in Colombia, to academic and animal advocacy back home, his passion for youth empowerment has only grown. Previously, Alex has worked managing mentorship and internship programs for students so they can gain a rewarding experience outside of their academic curriculum. Alex has had the opportunity to help improve career & college outcomes for low-income, first-generation, and underrepresented students through the various programming he created and managed. Currently, he uses his platform and knowledge of student support to better impact the community and spread the ways that others can help impact the lives of talented and wonderful youth.
Best Best & Krieger
Anya is a third year associate at Best Best & Krieger in the environmental practice group. Her work focuses primarily on issues relating to water quality and toxic chemicals for her public works clients. Outside of work, Anya is the assistant concertmaster of the Los Angeles Lawyers Philharmonic and volunteers with Food Forward to pick produce from local fruit trees. She hopes that participating in Coro will help her improve her leadership ability, public speaking skills, and increase her confidence more generally.
Community Based Housing
Araceli Mendoza is the Senior Director of Community Based Housing with Downtown Women’s Center. Araceli has worked in the public sector for over fifteen years meeting the needs of underserved communities in Los Angeles. As a community driven individual, Araceli has looked for opportunities to improve the community that undergoes many challenges and the need of strong leaders and agents of change to help create opportunities for growth and improvement.
In the last five years she has led multiple permanent supportive housing programs through growth and expansion to assist the homeless population throughout Los Angeles County. Araceli contributes and develops emerging leaders in providing Culturally Responsive and Trauma informed approach services to the communities of greater Los Angeles. With her extensive experience working in diverse communities in the non- profit sector and local government, she has found herself constantly looking for ways to best address the concerns and challenges in the community.
Emergency Services l – Dignity Health
Carina is the Nursing Director of Emergency Services at Dignity Health California Hospital. In her capacity, she directs the provision of nursing care in a business unit while maintaining standards of patient care. She is responsible for the overall quality of care provided by nursing personnel and advices medical staff, department heads, and administrators in matters related to nursing services and strategies. Hobbies include swimming, gardening and cooking. Seeking to learn from others and create a leadership network.
Chief of Staff
Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Member Melvoin
Danielle is the Chief of Staff for Los Angeles Unified School Board Member Nick Melvoin. She manages a team of professionals serving the students, families, and stakeholders of communities including Westchester, West LA, Venice, West Hollywood, Hollywood, and the West San Fernando Valley. She also provides strategic support on decisions impacting all students. A proud product of LAUSD schools who began her career as a teacher in South LA, Danielle is committed to ensuring that all children can thrive. Previously, she also served as an attorney at the nonprofit Alliance for Children’s Rights and the law firm of O’Melveny & Myers LLP. She holds a B.A. in Psychology from UC Berkeley, a M.A. in Education from Loyola Marymount University, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Danielle is looking forward to strengthening her effectiveness as a leader and connecting with professionals working to improve our city for future generations.
Senior Advisor, Media Relations
Southern California Edison, Media Relations
Diane Castro is a Media Relations Senior Advisor at Southern California Edison. In this role, Diane is responsible for active media outreach and serving as a company spokesperson with the media. In addition, she develops and executes communications plans for key company initiatives and supports senior leadership at key conferences. Prior to SCE, Diane held various leadership roles within the entertainment industry including NBC, Turner Networks and FX. She is passionate about diversity, equity and inclusion and has worked with organizations in the past such as Voto Latino, LULAC, Imagen Foundation and now supports Edison International Scholarship Programs. Through the Coro Lead LA program, Diane wants to continue her development as a leader in a new industry, expand her professional network in the greater Los Angeles region and meet others who share a passion for learning, development and making a positive impact.
Program Manager Policy & Partnerships
Center for Policing Equity, PMO
Donte Franklin currently works for Center for Policing Equity as a Program Manager for Policy and Partnerships. Donte supports the team with project planning, resource management, cross team collaboration and risk management. Currently serving as the community service and community engagement board chair for Los Angeles Urban League Young Professionals, Donte enjoys building spaces for young professionals to engage in community service and action work. Additionally, Donte holds a Masters in Public Policy and Public Administration and hopes to utilize this training to push for equitable systems and solutions that communities are pushing for. Donte hopes to continue to build a strong network in Los Angeles of changemakers and continue developing leadership skills.
Associate Director Employee Engagement & Experience
Para Los Niños
As the Associate Director, Employee Engagement and Experience at Para Los Niños (PLN), Genesis is a champion for an employee experience that centers on wellness, authentic engagement, and aligns with Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice efforts. Since 1980, PLN continues to make a profound impact on over 10,000 Angeleno families each year through a comprehensive, holistic approach in helping children, youth, and families reach their full potential.
Genesis is responsible for developing strategies to improve employee engagement and experience while collaboratively cultivating an all-inclusive organizational culture throughout the 17 PLN offices nestled in Los Angeles, promoting internal communication, connection, and productivity.
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Genesis is honored to take part in LEAD LA and seeks to enrich her networks, learning with and from other empowered, driven, and eager leaders. Genesis enjoys going on long walks, drives and hikes along with her family.
Grace is currently the Director of Program at iMentor NYC, a nonprofit that promotes educational equity and post-secondary access through 1 to 1 mentorship for 11th and 12th grade students across more than a dozen Public Schools. In her role, Grace leads all facets of the program, including curriculum development, teacher training, manager training, mentor coaching, and strategic planning.
Grace is passionate about educational equity and building inclusive communities. She began her career in education as a 4th grade teacher in Brooklyn. She then shifted into a leadership role at a network of charter schools, working to align curriculum and training across 16 elementary schools.
Grace holds a BA from Yale University and a Master’s in Education from Relay Graduate School of Education. Grace is moving to Los Angeles this summer and is grateful for the opportunity to explore LA’s opportunities and challenges alongside multi-sector leaders at Coro.
Information Systems Manager II
City of Los Angeles, Harbor Department
Hoa is a highly competent leader who oversees multiple teams who support the daily operations in the IT Division at the Los Angeles Harbor Department. She performs multiple roles concurrently – operations team manager, technical lead, and project manager. Ms. Nguyen builds high-performance teams, leads by example with clear vision and expectations, and establishes fair roles and responsibilities among team members. She applies her solid technical and analytical skills, 20+ years of IT experience, networking skills, and passion for technology to enable IT innovations in the Public Sector, and ability to work with cross-disciplinary stakeholders to accelerate Harbor departments’ digital transformation. As the Project Manager of the Harbor Department’s multi-million, multi-year highly complex for the ERP Cloud migration capital project, she hopes that the program will provide her with leadership dynamic 360 view, develop her professional and personal leadership skill with experimental cohort training to enable her cross-functional team to be productive and elevate her communication skill to executive level.
Library Branch Supervisor
City of Glendale, Glendale Library, Arts & Culture
Isis Santos is the Glendale Library, Arts & Culture (GLAC) Supervisor of the Montrose and Chevy Chase branch libraries. By managing the operations of these two branches, Isis ensures that members of their surrounding communities have equitable access to information, resources, technologies, literacy, and learning in welcoming, community-centric spaces.
In addition to overseeing the branches, Isis is also involved in system-wide committees and initiatives that support inclusion, diversity, equity, and antiracism such as the Be The Change series and the library’s annual Dia de los Muertos celebration.
Besides being involved with the library community, Isis enjoys the outdoors and can be found hiking, camping, or rock climbing on weekends.
Isis is excited to be part of the Coro Lead LA program. She believes the program will help her develop leadership skills and strategies in a team with members from different fields and with varied perspectives.
Director of Finance and Operations
Jennifer Leger is the Director of Finance and Operations of BeyGOOD Foundation. In her current role she implements internal processes, works closely with contracted accountants to ensure the financial health of the organization, and oversees the organization’s grant programs. Prior to joining BeyGOOD, Jennifer held the role of Operations and Grants Manager at the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles, an organization that leverages private-public-partnerships to fund projects and in partnership with city departments to serve Angelenos. Jennifer holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Economics and a Master in Public Administration, and is excited to join Coro Lead LA to hone her leadership skills and learn from her peers.
UCLA Alumni Affairs, Alumni Career Engagement
Joseph is an Associate Director for the Alumni Career Engagement team housed within the UCLA Alumni Affairs Department. In his capacity, he develops alumni-oriented career programming, collaborates with regional and diversity networks, and works closely with campus departments and faculty. He is responsible for recruiting UCLA alumni and employers to participate as speakers and facilitators for courses, programs, and events throughout the academic year. He manages signature alumni programs like the Career Coaches Network and Insights Series. During his free time, he enjoys hiking, trying new restaurants and volunteering through local community organizations. Through CORO he hopes to expand his professional network and learn more about the Greater Los Angeles region and how he can make an impact beyond the UCLA campus.
UCLA, Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Office
KC Bui is the Deputy Director for the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs at UCLA. In this role, kc works with the Vice Chancellor to support the 25 Student Affairs departments and initiatives. kc’s passion for education began when assisting with Judo classes at the YMCA. kc also enjoys service related activities and regularly volunteers at events and donates platelets. As part of the Lead LA cohort, kc is excited for this opportunity to build relationships with the cohort members and connect with the LA community.
Director of Account Management
Kenzie is the Director of Account Management (West Coast) at RethinkEd, focusing on expanding partnerships to provide the needed solutions for today’s issues in K12 education. In addition to supporting education, Kenzie has a lifelong commitment to animal welfare, specifically reducing the number of pets languishing in shelters through volunteering with rescue organizations. Kenzie is very excited about the opportunity to meet a diverse group of leaders in the Los Angeles area, and collaborate on very real issues facing the city today.
Associate Director, Permanent Housing
Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA)
Kiara Payne currently serves as the Associate Director of Permanent Housing at LAHSA. Currently pursuing her Doctorate of Social Work (DSW) degree at USC, she brings a wealth of experience and a strong academic foundation to her role. Kiara leads a dedicated team at LAHSA, collaborating with stakeholders to address homelessness and develop sustainable solutions.
Her expertise has been instrumental in refining the Coordinated Entry System (CES), facilitating the expedited transition of unhoused individuals into permanent housing. Her commitment to social justice drives her passion for breaking the cycle of homelessness and providing individuals with the support they need to rebuild their lives.
Participating in Coro’s program, Kiara aims to gain a holistic understanding of both the city and county, enhance her leadership skills, and build a network of professionals for future collaborations that will assist with advancing initiatives that create positive change and ensure equitable access to housing for all.
County of Los Angeles, Department of Arts and Culture
Kim Glann is the Sr. Manager of Cross Sector Initiatives at the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture, where she manages a program that places artists in County departments to collaborate on solutions to challenging social issues and supports the implementation of the Countywide Cultural Policy. Kim has been with LA County for 13 years, previously serving as Acting General Manager and Director of Communications and Marketing for the County-owned Ford Amphitheatre. She has more than 20 years of experience as a communications professional and has taught at Claremont Graduate University. Kim has been a Los Angeles area theatre artist for more than 25 years, collaborating as a producer, actor, and director with Moving Arts and Ghost Road theatre companies. Over the course of this next year with Coro, she looks forward to building new skills and creating new relationships that will support her growth as a leader.
Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator
As the Senior Manager of Program Administration on the Market Transformation team, Lauren oversees the management and administration of large federal and state grant awards. Lauren also assists in the strengthening initiatives and programming within the Market Transformation Pillar and supports market research and program development related to sustainability & circular economy innovation. Before joining LACI, Lauren worked in administrative affairs and operational management at Columbia University. Prior to that, Lauren championed a collaborative grant program and oversaw the project management awarded projects at Houston Wilderness, successfully securing over $1M in funding. Lauren holds an MPA in Environmental Science and Policy from Columbia University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston focused on Environmental Sciences & Systems. Lauren enjoys birding, upcycling clothing, photography and hiking in her free time. Lauren’s hope in participating in the Coro Leads program to be better able to guide and motivate teams whether internal or external facing that she collaborates with.
Director of Strategic Relations
Central City Association of Los Angeles (CCA)
Lily Rosenberg is the Director of Strategic Relations for Central City Association (CCA). She stewards CCA’s broad membership portfolio of ~300 organizations across sectors by leading strategic engagement and retention of members while driving intentional member recruitment. Lily helps identify opportunities to support members and strengthen relationships with CCA and ensure its greatest possible impact across Los Angeles.
While her job requires a deep understanding of Downtown LA, Lily embraces Lead LA as a gateway to understanding the challenges and opportunities unfolding across the rest of the region. Lily hopes to build meaningful relationships with others across backgrounds and worldviews, and gain a deeper connection to the broader region’s ecosystem through on-the-ground, memorable experiences with her cohort.
Lily is the Board President of the UCLA Alumni Association’s Downtown LA chapter. In 2018, she received a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
Sustainable Resources Officer
Moulton Niguel Water District
Lindsey Stuvick is the Sustainable Resources Officer at Moulton Niguel Water District and supports water efficiency, water resource, and operational efficiency projects. Her career has been dedicated to developing sustainable, data-driven efficiency solutions and customer engagement strategies that can be replicated and adapted across the industry. She has a Master’s Degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of California, Irvine and a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from California State University, Fullerton. Lindsey is also the recipient of the Switzer Fellowship from the Robert & Patricia Switzer Foundation. She enjoys hiking, spending quality time with her family, and coaching youth softball. Lindsey is hoping to expand her professional network and expand her leadership skill set by joining CORO Lead LA.
Media and Stakeholder Engagement Manager
Marissa is a Media and Stakeholder Engagement Manager at SoCalGas. In her role, she develops and manages strategic communications to support the objectives of the nation’s largest gas utility. She has over ten years of external affairs experience. She hopes to enhance her leadership skills and network as part of her Coro participation.
Director of Internal Operation
Chrysalis, Chrysalis Enterprises
As Director of Internal Operations, Ruben Borrero oversees the operational support, personnel management, fleet management, and onboarding of clients for Chrysalis Enterprises, which represents one of Southern California’s biggest employment social enterprises. During his 12 years as a public and nonprofit professional, Ruben has worked as Program Director of The Onward Scholars Program with The Smet Foundation and, most recently, as Associate Director with Catholic Charites of Los Angeles. In these roles and previous capacities, he developed and facilitated many programmatic initiatives for underserved communities in both Chicago and Los Angeles.
A board member of two Latino-focused organizations, Ruben holds a Master of Public Administration from the College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs at The University of Illinois Chicago and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Loyola University Chicago. In his spare time, Ruben writes and composes music for various Latino music projects in his native Puerto Rico.
Cenergy Consulting, LLC
Sheila Rossi is a seasoned strategist and community advocate with over twenty years experience working with private and non-profit organizations. A creative thinker, Sheila excels in strategic planning, data analysis, project management, and DEI leadership. She earned a BS in Business from UC Berkeley and an MHA from USC. With an academic focus on value-based care, population health management, and innovation strategies, Sheila is currently working on a stealth Health Tech start-up to improve health equity. She serves as a member of SoCal American College of Healthcare Executives DEI committee, a CADEM delegate and DEI facilitator, and as a Finance Commissioner for the City of South Pasadena. Most importantly, she is the mother of three amazing changemakers.
Sheila hopes to build on her transformative WIL experience to further develop her leadership and networking skills and understanding of interconnected regional issues in pursuit of her civic and professional goals.
Business Team Manager, External Affairs
Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
Stacy is the Business Manager for Metropolitan Water District of Southern California’s External Affairs Group. She manages development and administration of the group’s $30 million budget along with contracts and administrative operations for legislative, public outreach and media activities.
Stacy has a Bachelor of Science degree in public relations with an emphasis in journalism. Stacy is also a Master of Public Administration and has worked in administrative management roles at the Internal Revenue Service and South Coast Air Quality Management District. At the latter, she supported groundbreaking air toxics monitoring, health risk assessment, permitting, rule development and compliance programs. Stacy’s recent leadership opportunities have focused on her dedication to diversity, equity and inclusion program management, workforce development, and community outreach activities.
A champion for process improvement, mentoring other women and strategic succession planning, Stacy looks forward to bringing her strong collaborative leadership style to CORO’s 2023-24 Lead LA cohort and to the growth and enlightenment that will come from sharing in the diverse experiences and backgrounds of her fellow cohorts.
Community Affairs Manager
Los Angeles Department of Water and Power
Stephanie Spicer is the Community Affairs Manager at the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), the nation’s largest municipal utility. She is responsible for planning and implementing community outreach and engagement for major LADWP policies and programs. She has more than 15 years of experience in community affairs, implementing public information campaigns, maximizing resources through public-private partnerships, and nurturing relationships with community members and project partners throughout Los Angeles.
She graduated from Loyola Marymount University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and the University of Southern California with a Master’s Degree in Urban Planning. Outside of the office, Stephanie is active in fundraising for her daughter’s school, and enjoys traveling with her family.
Through Coro Lead LA, she hopes to gain a broader perspective for her community affairs work, enhance her leadership skills and connect with leaders across the region to better serve LADWP, its customers and communities.
Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC)
In his role as Policy Manager, Suli brings experience in business incubation, issue development, policy research, and stakeholder engagement strategy to advance LAEDC’s policy priorities on specific key industries and legislation at the local, state, and federal levels. As a member of the Strategic Initiatives team, he also supports LAEDC industry cluster development to strengthen the region’s global competitive advantage.
As a CORO Lead LA Fellow, Suli is excited at the opportunity to enhance his leadership skills by learning how to better foster collaboration, engage with dynamic thinkers, and improve management skills to effectively collaborate with individuals of diverse approaches when solving complex issues.
Given its comprehensive and hands-on approach, Suli is also eager to work alongside other like-minded professionals to challenge his perspective on leadership and provide additional exposure to regional issues and the various solutions that local stakeholders have developed to solve them.
State Senator Lena Gonzalez
Vanessa is a Field Representative for State Senator Lena Gonzalez, who represents California’s 33rd Senate District. She serves as a liaison between the community and the Senator, advising the Senator on environmental issues and ensuring the concerns of the district are reflected in the Senator’s legislative priorities. Vanessa’s passion for advocacy stems from her upbringing in Southeast Los Angeles County, an area disproportionately affected by environmental injustices. This firsthand experience fuels her commitment to advocating for equitable solutions that uplift marginalized communities. She recently joined the Latina Public Service Academy’s Executive Board to support the next generation of Latina Leaders. Vanessa earned her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Italian, with a minor in Chicano/a Studies, from UCLA. Vanessa joins Coro’s Lead LA program in hopes of enhancing her leadership abilities and equipping herself with the necessary skills to drive environmental advancement throughout the greater Los Angeles region.
Casework Deputy for Constituent Engagement
Office of Los Angeles County Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell
Victoria currently serves as the Casework Deputy for Constituent Engagement for the Office of Los Angeles County Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell. In her role, Victoria is a liaison between Los Angeles County departments and Second District constituents, where she resolves issues within Los Angeles County jurisdiction. In addition, Victoria is the co-leader for Supervisor Mitchell’s Racial Justice Learning Exchange Book Club, where she co-hosts book discussions on racial literacy to celebrate diversity and discuss meaningful steps to eliminate structural racism.
Victoria is a community-driven advocate who is deeply passionate about literature, traveling, politics, and her multicultural identity. As part of the Lead LA 6 Cohort, Victoria is looking forward to strengthening her leadership capacity, networking with diverse multi-sector leaders, and to continue expanding her knowledge on how to create a more equitable Los Angeles County.