Judy McDonald is a long time community volunteer. Her current civic involvements are on the boards of The National Conflict Resolution Center, the Arts District at Liberty Station, RISE, and the Parker Foundation. She is the widow of Alex McDonald, an Appellate Court justice, the mother of four daughters, and the grandmother of seven grandchildren.
Edward Lopez is the Executive Director of UCAN – the Utility Consumers’ Action Network. UCAN is a nonprofit “Intervenor” at the California Public Utilities Commission where it represents the interests of San Diego County utility ratepayers in Commission regulatory proceedings. UCAN’s mission is to represent, advocate, and educate utility ratepayers and San Diego consumers.
A native of San Diego, he received his bachelor's degree from UCSD and his law degree from UC Berkeley School of Law. He started his professional career practicing public agency law and advising nonprofit organizations. He has a long record as a nonprofit professional, stewarding an education foundation and also developing an Advanced Energy Community plan for a community-based organization serving neighborhoods in Southeast San Diego.
Mr. Lopez served two terms as an elected Board Member for San Diego City Schools, twice as Board President, representing District E (Southeast San Diego). Previously, at UCSD, he managed student retention, outreach efforts, and building partnerships with K-12 schools, and helped open the CREATE program.
With a “DEEP” and abiding belief in education, he looks forward to supporting DEEP as it serves the students and families of San Diego schools.
Amanda Bonds serves as Program Director at Words Alive, providing leadership for a portfolio of programs that connect children, youth and families to the power of reading. Amanda also manages agency evaluation efforts and represents Words Alive on multiple education-focused community partnerships across the county A 2014 Fellow of the San Diego Leadership Alliance, Amanda earned her master’s degree in literature from the University of California, San Diego prior to joining Words Alive in 2009. Believing in the power of learning, her teaching history includes college-level writing at UCSD, elementary age classrooms in Jamaica and summer programs at the San Antonio Zoo. Before moving west, Amanda served as an AmeriCorps volunteer with the Keeping Austin Housed Coalition, providing advocacy and case management to homeless immigrant families in her native state of Texas. As chair of the Early Learning Table, Amanda is proud to serve on the board of directors for DEEP because she believes that the greatest opportunities for young people in the Diamond come by way of imaginative and collective effort!
Julia M. Bridi has been in education for over two decades. She has been a classroom teacher, peer coach/staff develop, school administrator and currently works as an Executive Leadership Coach with the San Diego County Office of Education. Julia Bridi strongly believes in school improvement through a strong theory of action that includes professional learning, high quality leadership and teacher efficacy. Julia understands the prerequisite of DATA use in education in an effort to constantly and carefully monitor student learning. She enjoys collaboration with colleagues via lesson study opportunities, book study opportunities, and regular instructional walk throughs. She has been a strong advocate for the Diamond Excellence for Education Partnership (DEEP) since the organization’s inception. DEEP’s theory of action mirrors Julia’s beliefs and espouses a system that promotes equity for all children.
Donald Duford is an effective business leader with demonstrated success in private equity M+A strategies, turnarounds, and start-up situations. Experience is primarily in the insurance services sector – managed care, cost containment, claims, and customer service. Clarifying strategy for success and ensuring every aspect – person, process, compensation, etc – is completely aligned with the strategy is the approach used to create results and value. Abilities have been developed through nearly 40 years of management experience. The first 10 years in various operational management roles; the next 10 years in leadership positions in Sales, Marketing, and Product Development; the remainder in CEO/President roles.
Norm is the board secretary of the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation and Jacobs Family Foundation. Norm spent nine years as a U.S. Marine Corps Officer, first serving as an infantry officer in Vietnam and then as a naval aviator flying worldwide transport and refueling missions. After leaving the Marine Corps, Norm entered commercial aviation and served as a captain with America West Airlines until his retirement in 2005.
Norm has a strong interest in public policy issues and is an advocate of self-help community change strategies and school reform. His priority is helping the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation and the Jacobs Family Foundation develop the expertise and experience to find and nurture the best programs that provide financial independence and success within the community.
Norm holds a Bachelor of Science degree in naval science from the U.S. Naval Academy. Norm is married to Valerie Jacobs Hapke, and they have two children.
Norm is dedicated to improving the education of our children in the Diamond neighborhoods and this has been a passion of his since the Jacobs Foundation started working in the neighborhood. He was very pleased to sponsor the initial work of the group and support the collaboration that began under Dr. Gianzero’s leadership. The Jacob’s Foundation has been gratified that their support has been so successful and that DEEP was able to become its own entity. DEEP has Norm’s wholehearted financial and moral support and he is proud to be a part of it as a board member.
Deborah Costa-Hernández, Ed.D. is a collaborative educational leader who currently serves as the Statewide Executive Director of the California Reading and Literature Project (CRLP). She has been a teacher, school and district administrator, and leadership coach. Her entire career in education has been focused on the academic achievement of English learners and underserved student populations. In her current position she oversees a number of professional development programs designed to build teachers’ capacity to teach reading/literacy and to meet the academic needs of all students.
Dr. Costa-Hernandez has been involved in DEEP from the beginning and is proud to be part of a mission-driven, collaborative, coherent effort to provide wrap around support to students in the schools and communities served by DEEP.
Hugh Mehan is Professor Emeritus of Sociology and Education at UCSD, appointments that link his commitments to research and practice. He started the Teacher Education Program at UCSD and directed that Program from 1972 until 1998, when he became the founding director of the Center for Research on Educational Equity, Access, and Teaching Excellence. CREATE coordinates efforts at UCSD to improve the academic preparation of under represented students through partnerships with K-12 schools and the Preuss School, UCSD’s on-campus model charter school. His most recent book, In the Front Door, discusses his research on the political origins, culture, and organization of The Preuss School and Gompers Preparatory Academy in their efforts to provide an excellent and equitable education to under represented youth.
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