Meet the San Joaquin Valley Funders’ Collaborative
The SJV Funders’ Collaborative works to support funder learning and collaboration to promote healthy, equitable communities and sustainable natural systems in the San Joaquin Valley.
- Kathryn Gilje (Co-chair)
- Adriana Saldivar (Co-chair)
Latino Community Foundation
- Artie Padilla
Central Valley Community Foundation
- Kevin Boyer
Regenerative Agriculture Foundation
- Sergio Cuellar
Sierra Health Foundation/San Joaquin Valley Health Fund
- Dr. Juliet Christian-Smith
- Sidra Fatima
- Hector Gutierrez
First 5 Kern
- Kaying Hang
Sierra Health Foundation
- Amanda Hughes
Stanislaus Community Foundation
- Janaki Jagannath
11th Hour Project
- Craig Martinez
The California Endowment
- Marni Rosen
- Marie Sanchez
- Harkiran (Kiran) Sandhu
- Jazmin Segura
Common Counsel Foundation
- Mark Valentine
ReFrame It Consulting
Kathryn Gilje (Co-chair)
Kat Gilje is Executive Director of Ceres Trust. Ceres Trust, whose name honors the ancient goddess of agriculture, provides grants that support healthy and resilient farms, forests and communities; and the ecosystems upon which we all depend. Ceres Trust focuses on grassroots leadership and organizing, equity, and movement building toward systemic and transformational change. An agronomist and community organizer trained by Voices for Racial Justice in Minnesota, Kat previously was co–director of Pesticide Action Network North America; co–founder/director of Centro Campesino; and senior associate at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. She serves on the steering committees of the Bay Area Justice Funders Network and the Health and Environmental Network.
Adriana Saldivar (Co-chair)
As Program Manager, Adriana Saldivar leads Latino Community Foundation’s grantmaking and programming in the Central Valley. She supports local leaders in efforts to build power, increase civic engagement, and strengthen grassroots organizations in the Valley. She is passionate about immigrant and refugee rights, community-driven grantmaking, and cross-movement building.
Adriana has over ten years of experience in philanthropy, community organizing, and education. Prior to joining LCF, she spent five years at Open Society Foundations where she served as a Senior Program Specialist for the Immigrant and Refugee Rights portfolio, coordinating a $10 million grant-making initiative. In 2015, she was the program coordinator for the Emma Lazarus II fund, a $20 million rapid response initiative aimed at maximizing the impact of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Before that, she worked with undocumented and migrant students in the Central Valley helping them navigate higher education regardless of their immigration status. Concurrently she was an activist and community organizer focused on lifting up the voices of undocumented youth and farmworkers.
Adriana holds a BAs in Political Science, Latin American Studies, and Spanish Literature and a MA in International Relations from Fresno State University. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, dancing, organizing food/art tours, and hosting friends.
Artie was born and raised in Fresno California. After earning a degree in Business Administration from CSU Northridge, he returned home where he has worked in the nonprofit sector for over 28 years. Over the last 15 years, he’s been working closely in Fresno’s 92 public elementary school neighborhoods serving both youth and families. This work led him to create Every Neighborhood Partnership, a community-based organization that mobilizes and equips neighborhood building teams that actively serve on school campuses and in their surrounding community. Recently, Artie transitioned over to the Central Valley Community Foundation where he is overseeing the Neighborhood Development portfolio of their DRIVE Initiative.
As part of his community-wide work, Artie helped to create the Fresno County Trauma & Resilience Network in 2017. This growing collective of 120+ individuals have been learning and strategizing on how to develop a more “trauma informed” Fresno County. He also helped create the Fresno Community & Economic Development Partnership which is a cluster of 15 place-based organizations that serve the felt needs of the families in their geographical footprint.
All this work helps Artie in leveraging the overall collective impact work DRIVE is focused on in the Fresno region.
Kevin Boyer is the Founding Director of the Regenerative Agriculture Foundation. Before starting RAF, he spent 5 years managing the Regenerative Rangelands and Composting programs at The 11th Hour Project of The Schmidt Family Foundation. Kevin has worked for several food and farm-related nonprofits, and he grew up in Tulare County, California (one of the agriculture capitals of the world) surrounded by conventional agriculture. He maintains an active role in a California citrus farm that is transitioning to regenerative practices.
Sergio is a Senior Program Officer at Sierra Health Foundation and manages the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund portfolio. Born and raised in Patterson and an alumnus of California State University, Fresno, he is a son of the San Joaquin Valley. His deep commitment to the region and its communities makes him the perfect leader to take this work to the next level.
Sergio leads the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund team in strengthening community-centered work in the region through policy and advocacy. He also worked on the California Funders for Boys and Men of Color portfolio, leading the network to align investments and philanthropic leadership to address barriers to opportunity for boys and men of color.
Dr. Juliet Christian-Smith
Juliet Christian-Smith brings more than a decade of scientific research and policy analysis experience to her role as Senior Program Officer at the Water Foundation, with expertise in water, climate and sustainability issues.
Juliet came to the Water Foundation from the Union of Concerned Scientists where she helped lead water and climate work as a Senior Climate Scientist. She also brings a comparative perspective, having received a Fulbright Fellowship to study the implementation of the European Water Framework Directive in Portugal and having been a Murray Darling Basin Futures Fellow in Australia. Juliet has a PhD in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management from UC Berkeley.
Sidra Fatima is a program officer for the American Cities Program at The Kresge Foundation. She supports Kresge’s place-based programs and cross-city knowledge exchange. Sidra joined the foundation in 2019.
Previously, Sidra held positions with the City of Boston’s Community Preservation Department and was involved with creating the Community Development Learning Initiative at Harvard University. She also served as an associate environmental planner at Parsons Transportation Group, where she ensured environmental compliance and prepared environmental reports for transportation projects.
A native of southern California, Sidra earned a Bachelor of Science in urban and regional planning from California State Polytechnic University and holds a master’s degree in urban planning from the Harvard Graduate School of Design.
As Strategic Initiatives Specialist and Director, Hector Gutierrez oversees all of First 5 Kerns early childhood systems change work in Kern County and the greater San Joaquin Valley. He supports robust partnerships with public, private, and philanthropic partners to advance the healthy development children prenatal to five. He is an experienced policy strategist with a demonstrated history of working to advance policy and system change efforts that catalyze the health and economic vitality of families across California. Over the last decade, he has supported and advanced policies that increase access to safe and affordable food for low-income Californians. He also supported research and initiatives to improve safe drinking water for disadvantaged communities. As a former Program Officer for First 5 Los Angeles, Hector’s key area of responsibility included coordination and management of multi-million-dollar investments that advance First 5 LA’s systems change and nonprofit capacity building work across Los Angeles County. He also worked to advance the First 5 LA’s built environment portfolio which catalyzed key advocacy efforts that support community investments and active transportation for under-resourced communities across its place-based investment, Best Start.
Hector received his Master in Urban and Regional Planning from UCLA and BA in Ethnic Studies from UC Berkeley. In his spare time, he serves as a national board member for Kaiser Permanente Research Bank. Hector also enjoys cooking and working to develop the next generation of youth advocates to help engage them in the political process.
Kaying serves on the senior management team for Sierra Health Foundation and the Center for Health Program Management as the director of health programs. Before joining Sierra Health Foundation, Kaying served as associate director for Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees, where she worked with foundations, affinity groups, public policy groups and immigrant rights organizations. Previously, she served as senior program officer at the Otto Bremer Foundation in Minnesota and a program officer and senior consultant with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation.
Before she began her career in philanthropy, Kaying worked in state government as the state coordinator of the Refugee Health Program for the Minnesota Department of Health, and as assistant regional coordinator for the Refugee and Immigrant Health Program for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. She served as the first Co-Chair of the national board of National Asian Pacific Women’s Forum (NAPAWF) based in Washington DC, and served on the board of Asian Americans in Philanthropy (AAPIP). Mark currently serves as co-chair of Smart Growth California.
Amanda is the Chief Strategy Officer for Stanislaus Community Foundation where she maintains knowledge and nurture relationships with Stanislaus County charitable organizations, community groups, and public agencies. Amanda helps to educate and connect local donors to the nonprofit sector, convene local stakeholders around regional issues and initiatives, such as the Stanislaus Cradle to Career Partnership, and manage all grantmaking and scholarship processes in coordination with the Foundation’s Grants/Program committee.
Amanda’s professional background is primarily in the nonprofit sector, with experience as a grant writer for a social service agency providing direct support for survivors of domestic violence and marketing/PR support for a healthcare organization providing end of life care. She have deep empathy for our nonprofit partners and the role they play to improve the lives of the most vulnerable populations in our county.
Janaki Jagannath is a program manager at The 11th Hour Project’s Food & Agriculture program. Previously she worked in legal and policy advocacy in the San Joaquin Valley of California advancing environmental justice for the state’s unincorporated farmworker communities and has farmed in diversified and orchard crops across the state. Janaki holds a J.D. from University of California (UC), Davis School of Law and a Bachelor of Science in agricultural development from UC Davis. She is a co-founder of the California Farmer Justice Collaborative.
Craig Martinez joined The California Endowment in May 2012 as a program manager tasked with supporting policy and system change efforts to create healthier neighborhoods. Prior to joining The Endowment, Craig served as a health policy advisor in the Majority Health Policy Office of the Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP) Committee, first under the Chairmanship of the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy, and subsequently under the Chairmanship of Senator Tom Harkin. His legislative portfolio on the HELP Committee included issues relating to public health, disease prevention, health disparities, mental health, HIV/AIDS, and public health preparedness. Craig currently serves as co-chair of Smart Growth California.
Marni Rosen is a philanthropic and non-profit consultant with nearly 30 years of experience in philanthropy, non-profit and inter-governmental work. Marni served for over 16 years as the Executive Director of the Jenifer Altman Foundation (JAF), a private foundation supporting creative work in health, education, the environment and justice. In 2005, in the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, Marni co-founded the Gulf Coast Fund, to support the sustainable and just recovery of the region. In partnership with the Global Greengrants Fund and four international NGO networks, she initiated the Global South + Program to support environmental health and justice work globally. Marni has co-founded numerous initiatives at the intersection of health, environment and justice, and continues to play a leadership role in the field.
Marni is co-founder of the Health and Environmental Funders Network (and a past co-chair) and of the Funders Network on Trade and Globalization (now EDGE Funders Alliance).
Marie Sanchez is the Community Benefit Manager for Kaiser Permanente’s Central Valley service areas. As the Community Benefit manager, Marie is responsible for investments in communities served by the Kaiser Health Plan and Hospitals, focusing on improving the health and well-being of underserved populations and creating healthier communities in the Central Valley communities within San Joaquin and Stanislaus counties.
Marie has lived in the central valley for over 25 years. She has worked for Kaiser Permanente for over 16 years. Prior to working at Kaiser Permanente, she worked as the health education manager for Federally Qualified Health Center – Community Medical Centers, Inc. located in Stockton, CA.
Harkiran (Kiran) Sandhu
Kiran Sandhu is the Community Health Manager for the Kaiser Permanente Fresno Service Area. She is responsible for the development, implementation, and management of local Community Health investments and initiatives. She has partnered with local nonprofit, public health, and human service organizations to address the critical health and social needs of vulnerable and underserved residents in the communities of Fresno, Madera, Kings, and Tulare Counties.
Kiran has extensive experience providing safety net and protective services for children, families, older adults, and those with disabilities. Prior to joining Kaiser Permanente, she served as a Deputy Director with the Madera County Department of Social Services for public assistance programs where she helped to implement Home Visiting and Housing Support services for CalWORKs families. Additionally, she spent over 15 years with the Fresno County Department of Social Services as a Program Manager on the expansion of CalWORKs, CalFresh and Medi-Cal programs and as a Senior Staff Analyst focusing on grant and contract management, community partnerships, and fiscal oversight.
Jazmin Segura brings over twelve years of experience in immigrant rights and social justice movements in the non-profit and philanthropic sectors. She has a passion for racial and social justice and a deep commitment to grassroots organizing, advocacy, and movement building to bring about systemic change for low-income, immigrants and communities of color. Most recently, Jazmin worked at The San Francisco Foundation (TSFF) where she developed and launched the foundation’s first Rapid Response Fund for Movement Building, providing timely resources to grassroots organizations that are on the front lines of organizing around issues of racial and economic justice in the Bay Area. Jazmin worked across the Foundation’s departments including the Development and Donor Services team to increase resources for immigrant and youth-led grassroots organizations.
Prior to her work at the Foundation, Jazmin was the Policy Manager at Educators for Fair Consideration (E4FC). Under her direction, E4FC developed its first advocacy platform and created a leadership team of undocumented youth who led a successful statewide policy campaign to make career licenses accessible to all Californians regardless of immigration status. She also worked as a Policy Advocate at Services, Immigrant Rights, and Education Network (SIREN) where she co-led a diverse coalition of immigrant rights, criminal justice, and faith-based groups to pass one of the most progressive immigration detainer policies in the nation which later became a catalyst for the California Trust Act.
Jazmin’s commitment to building community power is inspired by her family’s immigration journey to the United States. She was born in Mexico City and migrated to the United States at the age of nine to be reunited with her father. She grew up in Boyle Heights, Los Angeles and graduated from the University of California Berkeley with a Bachelor of Art’s Degree in Political Economy. Currently, she sits on the Board of Directors for the Latina Coalition of Silicon Valley and is a former commissioner for the Human Relations Commission of Santa Clara County.
ReFrame It Consulting
Mark Valentine is the founder and principal of ReFrame It Consulting, which works with foundations and individual donors on grantmaking program design, implementation, and evaluation across a diverse array of issues, including: smart growth and sustainable land use, environmental health, energy and climate, marine and coastal conservation, and conservation finance. Amongst his clients is a private donor advisory service for which he manages a portfolio of grants focused on advancing sustainable land use policy in key regions of California.
Prior to founding ReFrame It, Mark was a program director with the Packard Foundation where he helped establish the nation’s largest conservation grantmaking program with initiatives across the western United States, Mexico, China, and the Western Pacific. In addition, he created an innovative interdisciplinary grantmaking initiative that highlighted the opportunities for strategic synergy between reproductive health, environment, and community development initiatives in select geographies within the Foundation’s global portfolio.