Board of Directors
JUAN SEPULVEDA, CHAIRSenior Vice President, Systems Leadership, PBS
Juan Sepulveda is currently Senior Vice President, Systems Leadership at PBS and leads a team focused on strengthening local PBS stations nationwide by activating the PBS network across the country. Prior to joining PBS, Sepulveda served as the Senior Advisor for Hispanic Affairs at the Democratic National Committee (DNC). He led the DNC portion of the Latino Obama 2012 team that helped re-elect President Obama with a record-level of Hispanic support (75%).
In the Obama Administration, Sepulveda led the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, an office focused on increasing Latino education attainment levels across the education system from cradle to career and beyond, having been appointed on May 19, 2009 to the position of Executive Director. Before joining the Obama Administration, Sepulveda had been a senior executive, strategist, and advocate in the nonprofit and philanthropic communities, with a focus in community development, capacity building, and transformational management for more than 20 years.
Having grown up in a working class Mexican-American neighborhood in Topeka, Kansas, Sepulveda has been involved in community organizing and politics since the age of 16, when he was the first high school student hired to work for the Kansas Secretary of State. Sepulveda received a bachelor's degree in government from Harvard University. The third Latino ever to be awarded a Rhodes Scholarship, he graduated with a combined degree in politics, philosophy, and economics from the Queens College of Oxford University. He received a juris doctor from Stanford Law School and has been admitted to the Texas Bar. Sepulveda has served as a board member of Stand for Children since 2017.
ELIZA LEIGHTON, SECRETARY
Eliza Leighton is the co-founder of Stand for Children. In 2001, after five years of leadership with Stand, Leighton left Stand to attend Yale Law School. Upon graduation, she went to work for a legal services organization for Latino immigrants in Prince George's County, Maryland. Leighton now serves as an independent consultant.
LUIS AVILA, TREASURER
President and Founder of Iconico Campaigns
Luis Avila is the President and Founder of Iconico Campaigns, a consulting company that helps build advocacy capacity with campaigns and organizations. A long-time community organizer and activist, he’s collaborated with communities and leaders to advocate for the DREAM Act, fight against SB1070 and challenge Sheriff Joe Arpaio's discriminatory practices in Arizona. Luis has led multiple national campaigns to advance the rights of immigrants in the US, spearheading Somos América in 2011, the largest immigrant-rights coalition in Arizona. He has served as Vice-Chair for UnidosUS, the largest Latinx civil rights organization in the United States, and is currently the Board Chair at The New Teacher Project. He’s a NextGen Google Fellow and an advisor to several national civic engagement organizations in the US. In 2018, he founded Instituto, an accelerator and incubator focused on building political power with low-income and communities of color in Arizona.
President, Fund for the City of New York
Lisette Nieves is currently the President of the Fund for the City of New York (FCNY), an institution charged with developing and helping to implement innovations in policy, programs, practices, and technology in order to advance the functioning of government and nonprofit organizations in New York City and beyond. Key FCNY programs include the Cash Flow Loan Program, The Partnership Program, and the Sloan Public Service Awards. Prior to the Fund Lisette was the Director of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies and a Full Clinical Professor at NYU Steinhardt where she co-led the design and implementation of a new doctoral program in Leadership and Innovation as well as taught Organizational Theory and Behavior and Educational Policy Analysis. Lisette is also a Distinguished Clinical Instructor with NYU, overseeing doctoral students and supporting research initiatives. Lisette holds a B.A. from Brooklyn College, a B.A./M.A. from the University of Oxford, an M.P.A. from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University, and a doctorate with distinction in Higher Education Management at the University of Pennsylvania. She is a Truman Scholar, Rhodes Scholar, Aspen Pahara Fellow, and a Richard P. Nathan Public Policy Fellow.
For over 25 years, Lisette has served in a variety of cross-sector leadership positions. She is an experienced social entrepreneur, public sector leader, and scholar. Lisette founded Lingo Ventures which is focused on growth, talent recruitment/retention, and change management. Lisette served as the Belle Zeller Distinguished Visiting Professor in Public Policy at the City University of New York at Brooklyn College. Lisette has also held senior leadership positions in the municipal and federal government. She also served as an Obama appointee on the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, where she co-chaired the higher education subcommittee and supported the production of two reports and convenings.
Lisette also served as the founding Executive Director of Year Up NY, an innovative workforce development program, wherein the span of five years she grew the organization from a $250,000 seed grant to a $6 million operation with over 20 corporate partnerships. Her interest in the workforce and education led to her dissertation on the relationship between student work and school roles, for which she received the 2016 Dissertation of the Year Award by the (NCSD – AACC). Her areas of interest include community colleges, college pathways, workforce and education partnerships which are all represented in her co-authored new book:
Her board affiliations include the Edwin Gould Foundation, AVID, The Education Trust, NewSchools Venture Fund, AERDF and Jobs for the Future (JFF). She served as the Founding Chair of the Guttman Community College Foundation Board.
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