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October 31, 2011

Adriana Godoy Leiss, TCWF
(818) 702-1900

The California Wellness Foundation Announces Staff Appointments in the Executive, Communications and Program Departments

Woodland Hills (CA) – The California Wellness Foundation (TCWF) announced new appointments for three members of its staff: Caroline Bourgoine as executive assistant to the president and CEO, Breanna M. Cardwell as communications associate, and Sandra J. Martínez as director of public policy.

"These three individuals bring a wealth of valuable and diverse experiences to their new appointments at the Foundation," said Gary L. Yates, president and CEO. "As a service organization whose role it is to be instrumental in the success of the grantees that we fund, the part of each staff member is essential to fulfilling the Foundation's mission of improving the health of underserved Californians."

Bourgoine assumes a new assignment as executive assistant to the president and CEO. She previously served as an executive assistant to the Executive Department. In her new role, she coordinates administrative and clerical activities for the president and CEO; is liaison to TCWF's Board of Directors; and serves as board secretary.

Prior to joining the Foundation in March 2007, Bourgoine worked as an executive assistant and secretary for corporations in the entertainment, legal and travel industries. Most recently, she was an executive assistant at North American Midway Entertainment. She is a member of the Association of Executive and Administrative Professionals and the American Society of Administrative Professionals. Bourgoine is a graduate of the Katharine Gibbs School in Piscataway, N.J., and is near completion on her bachelor's degree in psychology from California Coast University.

"I am excited and honored to step into this new role, where I will utilize my training and skills in support of the president and CEO to further the mission of The California Wellness Foundation," Bourgoine said.

Cardwell takes on a new assignment as communications associate, where she implements various communications activities including: the dissemination of electronic and printed Foundation- and grantee-produced materials; the writing and editing of content for the Foundation's publications and website; and the management of TCWF's publications and photography archives. She joined the Foundation in January 2009 as executive assistant to the vice president of communications. Prior to joining TCWF, Cardwell was a communications coordinator at City Scholars Foundation.

She is completing her master's degree in public policy and administration from California Lutheran University and holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Southern California. She is a member of the California Chicano News Media Association, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and the Communications Network.

"I am a journalist at heart and am committed to helping others in my community," Cardwell said. "As a communications associate, I am able to combine both passions through my job duties, as well as laud and highlight the work of our grantees."

As director of public policy, Martinez — who formerly was a program director for special projects — plans, coordinates and oversees the Foundation's public policy activities as a means of advancing TCWF's mission, achieving its goals and amplifying the impact of its grantmaking. She continues to manage the annual TCWF Sabbatical Program Award, which honors nonprofit health executives. Martínez joined the Foundation in January 2002 as program director during the final year of TCWF's 10-year, $60 million Violence Prevention Initiative. In 2003, she was assigned to oversee the Foundation's grantmaking in special projects.

Prior to joining TCWF, Martínez directed the Progressive Los Angeles Network and also directed other community organizing efforts at Community Coalition in South Los Angeles. She currently is president of the board of the Echo Park Film Center in Los Angeles. In 2010, Martinez was a fellow in the Grantmakers In Health's Terrance Keenan Institute for Emerging Leaders in Health Philanthropy. She received her master's degree in public health from UC Berkeley, and her bachelor's degree from UCLA.

"As a program director, I had the opportunity to make grants to a number of organizations working on policy issues intended to improve the health of underserved Californians," Martínez said. "In this new role, I look forward to overseeing a range of public policy activities with the goal of strengthening the Foundation's grantmaking program and advancing its mission."

The California Wellness Foundation is a private independent foundation created in 1992 with a mission to improve the health of the people of California by making grants for health promotion, wellness education and disease prevention. The Foundation prioritizes eight issues for funding: diversity in the health professions, environmental health, healthy aging, mental health, teenage pregnancy prevention, violence prevention, women's health, and work and health. It also responds to timely issues and special projects outside the funding priorities. Since its founding in 1992, TCWF has awarded 6,213 grants totaling more than $780 million.

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