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The Board of Directors

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Board of Directors Overview

The Board of Directors establishes the overall goals, directions and priorities for the Foundation’s programs and ensures that they are being pursued in the most effective and efficient manner. While keeping an “arms-length” distance, the Board acts as an objective governance body for: 1) the design of specific grants portfolios, grant recommendations, the review of proposals, and the review and oversight of funded projects; and 2) Foundation-related activities related to prospective and current Foundation grantees. Board members also help oversee the implementation of the Foundation’s strategic plan and the management of the investment portfolio.


 

Debra Nakatomi
Chair

Debra Nakatomi has been a director on the Board of The California Wellness Foundation since September 2014 and was elected chair in December 2016. Nakatomi is president of Nakatomi & Associates, a Santa Monica-based communications firm dedicated to advancing social change and promoting equity and awareness initiatives for nonprofit, public and private organizations committed to social good. As an advisor to CEOs and executive teams, the firm designs communications and culture change initiatives.

Full Biography

Debra Nakatomi has been a director on the Board of The California Wellness Foundation since September 2014 and was elected chair in December 2016. Nakatomi is president of Nakatomi & Associates, a Santa Monica-based communications firm dedicated to advancing social change and promoting equity and awareness initiatives for nonprofit, public and private organizations committed to social good. As an advisor to CEOs and executive teams, the firm designs communications and culture change initiatives.

Nakatomi has more than 30 years of experience in community education, public affairs and communications serving organizations committed to building philanthropy for women and girls, promoting health equity and advancing wellness for underserved communities. Nakatomi is chair-elect of the Little Tokyo Service Center Community Development Corporation and former board secretary and international commissioner for Girl Scouts of the USA. She previously served as vice chair of Asian Pacific Islander American Health Forum and chair of the Los Angeles Women’s Foundation.

Nakatomi is co-producer of “Stories From Tohoku,” a one-hour documentary that aired on PBS in 2014 chronicling survivors’ stories of courage and resilience after the 2011 Japan earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster. She is co-producer of a film profiling the life and career of Secretary Norman Mineta, who began his early years as an internee in a Japanese American Internment Camp and rose to serve in Congress as secretary of commerce and secretary of transportation under Presidents Clinton and Bush, respectively.

Nakatomi received her bachelor’s degree from California State University, Sacramento. She is a graduate of UCLA’s Management Development Program for Entrepreneurs, Gallup Leadership Institute, a fellow of the Asian Pacific American Women's Leadership Institute and a member of the 2009 Japanese American Leadership Delegation. She is recipient of the Changing the Face of Philanthropy award from the Women’s Funding Network.

Watch Cal Wellness’ video interview with Nakatomi by visiting our Sound Bites section.


 

Joseph M. Lumarda,
M.B.A.,
Vice Chair

Joseph M. Lumarda, M.B.A., has been a director on the Board of The California Wellness Foundation since September 2014 and was elected to vice chair in December 2016. Lumarda is senior vice president and investment counselor for Capital Group Private Client Services 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.

Full Biography

Joseph M. Lumarda, M.B.A., has been a director on the Board of The California Wellness Foundation since September 2014 and was elected to vice chair in December 2016. Lumarda is senior vice president and investment counselor for Capital Group Private Client Services 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, Lumarda spent 16 years at the California Community Foundation in the roles of program officer, vice president for development, 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 on 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.

Lumarda earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Saint John’s Seminary College and a master’s degree in business administration from Claremont Graduate University’s Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management. He is the board chair of the Center for Nonprofit Management, and a member of the boards of Southern California Grantmakers, Asian American and Pacific Islander Legal Center, Give2Asia, Drucker Institute, Pasadena Child Health Foundation and Saint Joseph Healthcare Foundation.

Watch Cal Wellness’ video interview with Lumarda by visiting our Sound Bites section.


 

Elisabeth Hallman,
M.B.A., R.N.,
Board Secretary

Elisabeth Hallman, M.B.A., R.N., has been a director on the Board of The California Wellness Foundation since 2009 and was elected Board secretary in December 2015. She has held various leadership positions throughout her professional career in the fields of nursing, hospital administration and hospital information systems management.

Full Biography

Elisabeth Hallman, M.B.A., R.N., has been a director on the Board of The California Wellness Foundation since 2009 and was elected Board secretary in December 2015. She has held various leadership positions throughout her professional career in the fields of nursing, hospital administration and hospital information systems management.

For 20 years, she has served as a Health System Director at Cedars-Sinai Health System. Prior to that, she spent 10 years with Enterprise Information Systems, guiding the selection and implementation of revenue cycle and clinical systems. She first joined Cedars-Sinai in 1996 as a service-line director of women’s services, where she provided administrative and clinical oversight for the women’s health program and the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Previously, Hallman was an administrator for the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Pediatrics at the Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, where she also managed women’s and children’s services. Hallman began her career in nursing in Philadelphia, specializing in neonatal care.

She received her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Chestnut Hill College, where she also earned a diploma in nursing. She received her Master of Business Administration from LaSalle University in Philadelphia.


 

M. Isabel Becerra,
B.A.

In 2009 M. Isabel Becerra was elected to serve on The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors and served as vice chair from January 2015 through December 2016. She brings 18 years of experience in program planning, operations, health policy and development activities for community health centers and private clinics in San Diego, Seattle and Orange County.

Full Biography

In 2009 M. Isabel Becerra was elected to serve on The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors and served as vice chair from January 2015 through December 2016. She brings 18 years of experience in program planning, operations, health policy and development activities for community health centers and private clinics in San Diego, Seattle and Orange County.

Becerra is the chief executive officer of the Coalition of Orange County Community Health Centers (Coalition), which represents 26 community health center organizations, some of which are federally qualified health centers (FQHC), community health centers, FQHC look-alike health centers, and free clinics at 67 sites throughout the county that provide health care to low-income and uninsured populations. Prior to joining the Coalition in 2000, Becerra enjoyed an extensive community health center career with a focus on Section 330 FQHCs.

She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Pomona College in California and has completed health care executive leadership programs at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and the University California, San Diego. She currently is an MBA candidate at Fredrick Taylor University in Moraga, California.

Watch Cal Wellness’ video interview with Becerra by visiting our Sound Bites section.


 

Xóchitl Castañeda

In September 2015, Xóchitl Castañeda was elected to The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors. Since 2001, she has served as the director of the Health Initiative of the Americas within University of California, Berkeley’s School of Public Health. Castañeda is also a coassociate director of the University of California Global Health Institute’s Center of Expertise on Migration and Health and codirector of University of California, Davis’ Migration and Health Research Center.

Full Biography

In September 2015, Xóchitl Castañeda was elected to The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors. Since 2001, she has served as the director of the Health Initiative of the Americas within University of California, Berkeley’s School of Public Health. Castañeda is also a coassociate director of the University of California Global Health Institute’s Center of Expertise on Migration and Health and codirector of University of California, Davis’ Migration and Health Research Center.

She has led a variety of research projects for universities, foundations and other institutions involved in data analysis and advocacy. Previously, she was a professor of public health sciences and a researcher at Mexico's National Institute of Public Health, where she directed the Department of Reproductive Health, for more than seven years.

In 2015, Castañeda was honored by the San Francisco Department of Public Health with the Public Health Hero award, and in 2010 the California Latino Legislative Caucus awarded her with the Latino Spirit Award. She was also recognized by the California State Legislature with the Distinctive Award for Improving Access to Health Care for the Most Vulnerable and Underserved Populations in 2006, and in 1999 she received the National Research Award on Social Science and Medicine. She has been twice elected as an advisor to the Institute for Mexicans Abroad.

Castañeda has served on numerous boards and advisory committees. She is currently treasurer and development board chair for Latino Coalition for a Healthy California; a member of the University of California HIV/AIDS Research Program’s Advisory Council; and a member of the Médica Sur Hospital’s board of directors in Mexico.

Castañeda received her bachelor’s degree in social psychology from San Carlos University in Guatemala and her master’s degree in social anthropology from the National School of Anthropology and History in Mexico. She was also a postdoctoral fellow in medical anthropology at Harvard University and a postdoctoral fellow in international reproductive health policy at the University of California, San Francisco. Currently, Castañeda is a Ph.D. candidate in the medical anthropology program at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands.


 

Arnold X.C. Perkins

In September 2015, Arnold X.C. Perkins was elected to serve on The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors. Perkins was the director of the Alameda County Public Health Department from 1994 through 2006, where he led the department through an organizational shift to reflect a community development orientation. He is currently a consultant and speaker in a number of areas, including youth development, intergenerational work in African American communities, HIV and AIDS, organizational change and community engagement. He works with foundations, government agencies, community groups, law enforcement, hospitals, school districts and others.

Full Biography

In September 2015, Arnold X.C. Perkins was elected to serve on The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors. Perkins was the director of the Alameda County Public Health Department from 1994 through 2006, where he led the department through an organizational shift to reflect a community development orientation. He is currently a consultant and speaker in a number of areas, including youth development, intergenerational work in African American communities, HIV and AIDS, organizational change and community engagement. He works with foundations, government agencies, community groups, law enforcement, hospitals, school districts and others.

Perkins has served in several diverse positions throughout his career, including as director of the Alameda County Alcohol and Drug Prevention Program; program officer at The San Francisco Foundation; coordinator of the Alameda County Homeless Program; coexecutive director of Youth Advocates; faculty member for California State University, Hayward, and for Antioch University West; and high school teacher and principal with Berkeley Unified School District.

As a respected and knowledgeable community leader, he is valued as a member of several boards, including Youth Radio and Triple Step Toward the Cure, and as board secretary for Urban Habitat. Perkins is also chair of the Alameda County Juvenile Justice Delinquency Commission, the University of California at San Francisco’s Helen Diller Comprehensive Cancer Center advisory board and The Mentoring Center board.

Perkins has received numerous awards and recognitions from organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control, the United Way of the Bay Area and the U.S. House of Representatives. In 2014, The California Endowment awarded Perkins with the Health Equity Founders Award and created the Arnold X. Perkins Award for Outstanding Health Equity Practices in his honor. In 2007, Perkins also received The San Francisco Foundation Community Leadership Award.

He received his bachelor’s degree from San Francisco State University; completed master’s coursework at California State University, Hayward; and received his teaching credential from the University of California, Berkeley. He also holds an honorary doctorate from The Professional School of Psychology in Sacramento.


 

Pamela J. Simms-Mackey,
M.D., FAAP

In September 2015, Pamela J. Simms-Mackey, M.D., FAAP, was elected to serve on The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors. She is the Director of Graduate Medical Education at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland, as well as an attending physician in the hospital’s Primary Care Center. She also serves as a clinical professor of Pediatrics at University of California, San Francisco’s School of Medicine.

Full Biography

In September 2015, Pamela J. Simms-Mackey, M.D., FAAP, was elected to serve on The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors. She is the Director of Graduate Medical Education at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland, as well as an attending physician in the hospital’s Primary Care Center. She also serves as a clinical professor of Pediatrics at University of California, San Francisco’s School of Medicine.

Previously, Simms-Mackey was the director and a physician facilitator for the Multicultural Curriculum Program at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland. She has also worked on research projects at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland, Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and Stanford Medical Center, and collaborated on a project with UCLA. She was a columnist for Family Digest Baby from 1999 to 2000.

She was honored as one the recipients of the 2013 Women of the Year Award from Nancy Skinner’s Assembly district office. Since 2010, she has annually been voted as one of the Bay Area’s best doctors and was the featured physician for the 2011 edition of Oakland Magazine. Simms-Mackey is also the recipient of the Stanley M. Higashino, MD Award for Clinical Excellence from UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland and the Charles R. Drew MD Award for Clinical Excellence from the UCLA Charles R. Drew Medical Education Program.

Simms-Mackey was appointed and currently serves on the American Board of Pediatrics’ Maintenance of Certification Examination Committee, Maintenance of Certification Committee and Future of Testing Committee. She also chairs the First 5 Alameda County Commission, which works with approximately 80 partners throughout the county to provide continuous prevention and early intervention to promote optimal health and development and narrow disparities for children from ages 0 to 5 and their families. In addition, she is a member of the Shoo the Flu Community Advisory Board and a member of three hospital committees: the Continuing Medical Education Committee, the Graduate Medical Education Committee and the Residency Selection Committee.

Simms-Mackey received her bachelor’s degree in human biology from Stanford University and her doctorate in medicine from the UCLA/Drew Medical Education Program.


 

Ernest J. Wilson III

In June 2015, Ernest J. Wilson III, Ph.D., was elected to serve on The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors. Wilson, a professor of communications and political science, founded and directs USC Annenberg’s Third Space Thinking. He is a faculty fellow at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy, and an advisory professor to the Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China. From 2007 to 2017, Wilson served as dean of the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California (USC).

Full Biography

In June 2015, Ernest J. Wilson III, Ph.D., was elected to serve on The California Wellness Foundation’s Board of Directors. Wilson, a professor of communications and political science, founded and directs USC Annenberg’s Third Space Thinking. He is a faculty fellow at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy, and an advisory professor to the Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China. From 2007 to 2017, Wilson served as dean of the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California (USC).

Previously, Wilson was the director of the Center for International Development and Conflict Management for the University of Maryland, College Park and held faculty positions at the University of Michigan and the University of Pennsylvania. He also served as director of international programs and resources on the National Security Council at the White House from 1993 to 1994; director of the Policy and Planning Unit for the U.S. Information Agency in 1994; deputy director of the Global Information Infrastructure Commission from 1994 to 1995; and as an advisor for President Barack Obama’s transition team.

Wilson is an accomplished author, and his most recent book is Governing Global Electronic Networks. He also cofounded and coedited the MIT Press series The Information Revolution and Global Politics and the journal Information Technologies and International Development. Wilson is also the recipient of numerous research fellowships and awards, including the Distinguished Scholar Award from the International Communication section of the International Studies Association and an International Affairs Fellowship from the Council on Foreign Relations.

He is a board member of the Pacific Council on International Policy and the National Academies’ Computer Science and Telecommunications board, and serves on the editorial advisory board for Demand Media. Wilson is a member of the Carnegie-Knight Commission on the Future of Journalism Education and The National Academies Board on Research Data and Information. He also served as board chair of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

He received his bachelor’s degree from Harvard College and master’s degree and a doctorate in political science from the University of California, Berkeley.

Watch Cal Wellness’ video interview with Wilson by visiting our Sound Bites section.


 

Photos & Highlights from Board of Directors’ Retreat

As part of Cal Wellness’ March 2015 Board retreat in San Diego, trustees and staff toured two underserved communities affected by polluting businesses and lack of access to healthy foods and open spaces. More…


Mission

The mission of The California Wellness Foundation is to improve the health of the people of California by making grants for health promotion, wellness education and disease prevention.


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