Board & Staff

Board of Directors

Woodside Community Foundation, Board of Directors; Amah Mutsun Land Trust, Board of Directors; Formerly, Senior Vice President of Cornish & Carey Commercial Real Estate; Former owner, Cornish & Carey Residential Real Estate; Former Board Member Woodside High School Foundation; UCB California Naturalist.

Director Product Marketing, Blue Coat Systems; former Senior Marketing Manager, Fortinet, Inc.; former Senior Marketing Manager, Cisco Systems, Inc.; former Product Manager, Apple Computer; member, Steering Committee, Neighbors Against Irresponsible Logging; resident of Los Gatos.

Retired Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Focus Business Bank; Member, Global Leadership Council, College of Business, San Jose State University; Chairman, Symphony Silicon Valley; Trustee, The Tower Foundation of San Jose State University; Chairman, Samaritan Medical Center; Trustee, First Community Housing; resident of San Jose and San Diego.

Current Director of Programs at San Francisco Parks Alliance, former Senior Director at the Silicon Valley Leadership Group; former Community Outreach Specialist for Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, former Board member, Santa Clara County League of Conservation Voters; current Leadership SF 2019 cohort member, resident of San Francisco. 2016 Honoree- 4th Annual Latino Heritage Leadership Awards for California’s 10th State Senate District. 2014-2016 City of San Jose Housing and Community Development Commission, Vice Chair.

Managing Partner and Founder, Breakaway Energy Partners;
Former executive at NRG Energy, SunEdison, and Solar Power
Partners (acquired by NRG Energy). BA in Environmental
Chemistry, UC San Diego; MBA, University of Southern California.
Active cyclist, Bay Area native, and resident of Burlingame, Calif.

Administrative Director of Natural Reserves & Coordinator of field Studies at the UCSC; Research Affiliate and Program Director of Central Coast Wetland Working Group at Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, SJSU; BS Humboldt State University; Ph.D. Texas A&M University.

A senior-level nonprofit professional with more than 15 years of management and fundraising expertise at SF Parks Alliance, Ms. Demitz has successfully cultivated relationships with philanthropic donors to diversify revenue, scale fundraisers and events such as Party for the Parks to increase revenue and brand, and improve collaboration between internal departments to support strategic planning and new HR initiatives.

Former Vice President, AWD Technologies; former Quality Assurance Manager, Guy F. Atkinson Company; President, Myrtle L. Atkinson Foundation; Former President, Friends of Menlo Park Library; resident of Menlo Park.

Fred Keeley has held elected office for 24 years in the Monterey Bay Area. Mr. Keeley is the former Speaker pro tem of the California Assembly. He was the elected Treasurer of Santa Cruz County for ten years and an elected member of the Board of Supervisors for eight years. Now, Mr. Keeley teaches in the graduate program of Public Administration at SJSU and at the Panetta Institute of Public Policy. He is on the board of directors of Working Partnerships USA, the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Foundation, the Community Foundation of Santa Cruz County, and Sempervirens Fund. Mr. Keeley authored the two largest park and environmental protection bonds in the nation’s history, the California Marine Life Protection Act, and the California Ocean Science Trust Act.

Board Member, Coastside State Parks Association; Docent, Ano Nuevo State Park; Board member, Redwood Meadows Ranch Homeowners Association; former Leadership Team, Mid-Peninsula Democratic Volunteer Center; former hospital administrator and health policy analyst; resident of Menlo Park and Bonny Doon.

President, Putnam Automotive, Inc.; Former President, Burlingame Chamber of Commerce; resident of Woodside.

Senior Vice President of Virtual Channel Sales Strategy at Wells Fargo; strategy and process improvement management consultant at Bain & Company, Computer Sciences Corporation, and Ernst and Young; B.A. Brown University; M.B.A. Stanford School of Business.

Vice President, Venture Investing at Citi Ventures; former investment professional at Bessemer Venture Partners and Longworth Venture Partners; former cofounder and head of product at a tech startup; hiking and camping enthusiast; resident of Redwood City.

Former senior administrator at Stanford and Santa Clara Universities, including serving as Associate Provost, Assistant to the President (Stanford), and Senior Assistant Dean in the Schools of Law and Engineering (Santa Clara). Bay Area native, long-time outdoors enthusiast, and artist. Resident of Menlo Park.

Partner, Wyckoff, Ritchey and Shanle; member and active hike leader, Sierra Club; resident of Santa Cruz.

Staff

Sara Barth

Sara Barth, Executive Director

sbarth@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x201

Sara Barth joined Sempervirens Fund in 2016 after 12 years working in leadership positions at The Wilderness Society (TWS), most recently as Senior Regional Director for the Pacific and Southeast regions. Sara oversaw TWS efforts to protect wildlands around the country, including successfully preserving over 1 million acres of federal land in California, and she completed a major climate adaptation project for the organization. Prior to TWS, Sara served as an environmental advisor to U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer in Washington, D.C. Her other professional experience includes working for the National Wildlife Federation and the World Wildlife Fund on U.S. land and wildlife policy. Sara holds a B.A. in Biopsychology from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Michigan’s School of Natural Resources and the Environment.

patrick

Patrick Gibbons, Chief Financial Officer

pgibbons@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x202

Patrick Gibbons joined Sempervirens Fund in 2014 and is responsible for all financial and accounting functions, human resources, information technology and office management. Before coming to Sempervirens Fund he worked as finance director at various local nonprofit organizations including The Hearing and Speech Center of Northern California, Meals on Wheels of San Francisco, San Francisco Parks Trust, Strybing Arboretum Society and Haight Ashbury Free Clinics. Patrick is a native of San Francisco and has a B.S. in Accounting from San Francisco State University.

image of Michael Kawalek

Michael Kawalek, CFRE, Director of Development

mkawalek@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x209

Michael Kawalek joined Sempervirens Fund in 2013, and he currently serves as the Director of Development. Before coming to Sempervirens Fund, he worked as Director of Development and Finance for Bay Area Wilderness Training and as a fundraiser for the Oakland Museum of California, the San Francisco Zoo, and KQED. Michael earned his Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) credential in 2015, serves as a Board Member for the Golden Gate Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and is a Bay Area native.

image of Laura McLendon

Laura McLendon, Director of Land Conservation

lmclendon@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x206

Laura McLendon is the Director of Land Conservation at Sempervirens Fund. She joined Sempervirens in 2006, and has spent the majority of her career working on land conservation projects that protect and restore redwood forests in the Santa Cruz Mountains. As Director of Land Conservation, Laura oversees all land acquisition and strategic conservation projects, as well as the stewardship and care of all of Sempervirens’ properties and conservation easements. Previously, Laura worked at The International Ecotourism Society in Washington, D.C., and in the environmental education department of the Santa Barbara Zoological Gardens. Laura holds a B.A. in Human Biology and M.A. in Anthropological Sciences with concentrations in environmental science, policy, and resource management from Stanford University. Laura is a native Californian, professional visual artist, and currently resides in San Francisco, California.

Image of Russell Ferretti-Hoyle

Russell Ferretti-Hoyle, Director of
Marketing and Communication

rferrettihoyle@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x207

Russell Ferretti-Hoyle joined Sempervirens Fund in January, 2019 as the Director of Marketing and Communications. He attributes his love of redwoods, hiking, and the preservation of open spaces and ecosystems to his father–a professor of biology at the University of Oregon–who introduced him to the great outdoors at an early age. Russell has a long history of working in health care and higher education, but considers this his most rewarding job since it combines his professional background with his personal passion. “I am the Lorax,” says Russell. “I speak for the trees.” Russell holds a B.A. in Mass Communications from UC Berkeley, and an MPA in Public Management from Cal State University, East Bay.

ann

Ann Blanchard, Annual Giving Manager

ablanchard@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x205

Ann Blanchard joined Sempervirens in 2012. Ann has over 10 years in non-profit service working in the social services field assisting adults with developmental disabilities. A Bay Area native who grew up camping at our local state parks, she holds a B.A. in Art History from the University of California, Davis and a B.F.A. in Visual Communications and Graphic Design from the International Academy of Design and Technology, Sacramento.

Ian Rowbotham

Ian Rowbotham, Land Stewardship Manager

irowbotham@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x208

Ian Rowbotham joined Sempervirens Fund in 2016 as the Land Stewardship Project Associate. He holds an M.S. in Earth Systems from Stanford University, with a focus on sustainable resource use. Before coming to Sempervirens Fund, he conducted research on the effects of climate change on forests of the Sierra Nevada and the movement and physiology of white sharks and bluefin tuna.

Image of Beatrix Y Jiménez

Beatrix Y. Jiménez, Land Stewardship Associate

bjimenez@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x216

Beatrix Jiménez joined Sempervirens Fund in 2018 as a Land Stewardship Associate. She previously worked in environmental construction and remediation performing plant and wildlife surveys, restoration, and environmental compliance throughout California. Prior to that, she interned at Peninsula Open Space Trust assisting the Land Stewardship team. On her free time she enjoys hiking throughout the Santa Cruz and Diablo mountain ranges. Beatrix holds a B.A. in Biology (CCS) and a minor in Earth Science from UC Santa Barbara.

portrait of Lauren Chavez

Lauren D. Chavez, Project Manager

lchavez@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x215

Lauren D. Chavez joined Sempervirens Fund in June 2017 as Project Manager for the new entrance to Castle Rock State Park. She holds a BA in Urban Studies and MS in Civil & Environmental Engineering from Stanford University, with a focus on sustainable communities, green buildings, and construction management. Lauren previously worked in residential construction and served as inaugural managing director for We Players, launching and establishing the Bay Area site-integrated theatre troupe as an arts and education nonprofit. She works as a healer and nature awareness and rites of passage mentor, and is an active member of The Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist in San Francisco.

HollyHolly Grench, Donor Relations Coordinator

hgrench@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x210

Holly Grench joined Sempervirens Fund in 2017 as a Development Associate and assumed the role of Donor Relations Coordinator in 2018. She holds a B.A. in American Studies from Stanford University with a focus on nature and the environment in American culture. She grew up attending summer camp in the Bay Area where she first backpacked the Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail and fell in love with California’s redwoods.

Alyssa Gillooley, Executive Assistant

agillooley@sempervirens.org, (650) 949-1453 x200

Alyssa Gillooley joined Sempervirens Fund in early 2018 as the Executive Assistant to Executive Director Sara Barth. With over 20 years in the non-profit sector, Alyssa has extensive experience in administration and project management and has a BA in Applied Economics from the University of San Francisco . Her earliest memory of the redwoods was on a vacation to California as a girl. “I remember how majestic the redwoods seemed at that time and I am still in awe of them today,” she says.

Science Advisory Panel

  • Philippe S. Cohen, Ph.D., Chair
  • Anthony R. Ambrose, Ph.D.
  • Nona Chiariello, Ph.D.
  • Gage Dayton, Ph.D.
  • Virginia Matzek, Ph.D.
  • Lisa Micheli, Ph.D.
  • Wallace “J” Nichols, Ph.D.
  • Scott Stephens, Ph.D.
  • Chris Wilmers, Ph.D.

Founding Directors

  • Andrew P. Hill
  • George C. Collins
  • Howard J. King
  • Claude A. “Tony” Look
  • Dorothy Varian

What does the Royal Air Force’s victory in the Battle of Britain have in common with the establishment of Castle Rock State Park? Russell Varian. Learn more about the integral role this Silicon Valley hero and his widow, Dorothy Varian, played in the history of Sempervirens Fund on the Sempervirens Fund Podcast.

 

Image
Image