The Policy Council represents a cross-section of the nonprofit community and serves in a policy advisory capacity to SVCN's CEO and Policy Director.
Razelle Buenavista is the Managing Director for Asian American Recovery Services, a program of HealthRIGHT 360, where she oversees the overall operations for Santa Clara County. Razelle attended San Jose State University and College of San Mateo in which she studied Social Work and Addiction Studies. For two decades, Razelle has served Asian/Pacific Islander and Latino communities as a social worker and youth advocate. Most notably, she has been an advocate for gender responsive services, and has taken the lead in developing the SISTER-to-SISTER: Celebrating Asian & Pacific Islander Women of Tomorrow Leadership Conference. Razelle has received numerous awards and recognition for her community work, including National Leaders Council’s Trailblazer Award for Public Health Innovation, and Silicon Valley APADC’s Warrior of the Year Award. Razelle is often invited to speak on various topics, including employee morale and retention, mentoring of emerging leaders, effective outreach strategies, girls and gangs, and substance use among youth. Her work has led to the development of the Teens Teaching Teens Handbook, and multiple culturally and ethnically specific programs in the San Francisco Bay Area. Razelle is an active member of the City of San Jose’s Mayor’s Gang Prevention Task Force Technical Team, Behavioral Health Contractors Association of Santa Clara County, Innovative Partnerships, Silicon Valley Council for Non-Profits Leadership Team, LEAD Filipino’s Advisory Team, and has dedicated countless hours to volunteering at several Bay Area programs.
Community Health Partnership (CHP)
Ms. Alvarado is an experienced healthcare executive, whose diverse career in health spans over 40 years, including working in a community health center, family planning clinic, county hospital, and university-affiliated adolescent clinic. Most recently, she served as Executive Manager in the Santa Clara County Public Health Department.
A recognized health-services leader throughout the Bay Area and the state, Ms. Alvarado advocates on behalf of low-income and medically underserved communities. In the course of her career, she has become known for her ability to bring stakeholders of diverse communities and perspectives to address the root causes of health issues, such as poverty and lack of education. She strongly believes in the power of multi-disciplinary health teams in program planning and delivery, and in this context looks forward to helping operate key components of Health Reform such as the patient-centered medical home. Additionally, she brings her vast experience in population-based public health program planning and systems-change to enhance the work of Community Health Partnership in community health, policy development, and advocacy.
Ms. Alvarado received a Master’s in Public Health in Maternal and Child Health and a Master’s in Social Work with an emphasis in Community Health from the University of California, Berkeley and a California Teaching Credential from the University of San Francisco. Originally from Mexico, Ms. Alvarado has lived in the Bay Area for over 50 years and now lives in Morgan Hill.She enjoys spending time with her husband, two adult children, and granddaughter.
Kids in Common
Dana Bunnett has been director of Kids in Common since January 2001. Kids in Common works to create a community where every child is safe, healthy, successful in learning, and successful in life. For the past several years, Dana has focused on addressing the opportunity gap many Santa Clara County children and youth face at school. Her work has shed light on school funding inequities. She has championed the idea that schools should be “resource hubs” for their students and families, and she has also encouraged schools to adopt practices that promote a positive school climate so children have a greater chance of being successful. As a community volunteer, Dana coordinates a program where adult advocates work with justice-engaged youth to address education issues. Dana is married and has a teenage son.
Associate Executive Director
Jewish Family Services of Silicon Valley
Susan Fent Frazer is the Regional Director for Community Living Services of Santa Clara County for the Institute on Aging. She has nearly 30 years of experience working for nonprofit community-based organizations that serve senior and disabled populations. Her career has reached both San Francisco and Santa Clara Counties where she has concentrated on key service areas such as case management, senior centers, elder abuse and senior nutrition. Through her role with the Institute on Aging, Susan is able to see first-hand how successful partnerships with health plans can not only lead to positive client outcomes, but provide a sustainable means to create more measurable and effective services. Susan is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who holds a B.A. in Social Work from San Francisco State University and a Master’s Degree in Social Welfare from the University of California at Berkeley.
Chief Executive Officer
Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County
Gregory Kepferle is CEO of Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County, a $34 million nonprofit social service and social change organization which works to end poverty by serving and advocating for people of all cultures and beliefs. Greg has worked in the Catholic Charities network for over twenty-five years. Starting his career as Director of the Social Justice Resource Center of Catholic Charities of the East Bay, he became Director of Parish Social Ministry and Assistant Director. Prior to his work in San Jose he was Executive Director of Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Greg is Vice-chair of the Board of Trustees of Catholic Charities USA and past president of Catholic Charities of California. In 2007 he organized Step Up Silicon Valley: The Campaign to Cut Poverty in Santa Clara County as a community-based network to disrupt the cycle of poverty. From this he incubated the Franklin-McKinley Children’s Initiative, a neighborhood-based anti-poverty strategy, and 1000 Out of Poverty, an outcomes-based collaborative pilot. He is a member of the American Leadership Forum – Silicon Valley and a member of Rotary International.
Behavioral Health Contractors' Association (BHCA)
As the first Executive Director of the Behavioral Health Contractors’ Association (BHCA), Elisa Koff-Ginsborg leverages her national policy and local organizing experience, extensive professional training and deep passion to create a strong safety net to support people affected by mental illness and substance use so that they have the same opportunities to fully participate in life as others in our community. With more than 25 years of non-profit and government experience that encompass policy analysis, advocacy, organizing, nonprofit management and direct service as a social worker, Elisa works collaboratively with nonprofit and government leaders.
Previously, Elisa served as interim director of the Interfaith Council on Economics and Justice and Associate Director of Community Education at Working Partnerships USA.
Elisa has a BA from Syracuse University, an MA from the Eagleton Institute at Rutgers University and an MSW from Catholic University of America.
Chief Executive Officer
Project Safety Net
For the past 20 years, Ms. Gloner embarked on a professional path that is committed to addressing the priorities of vulnerable populations and building community capacity. She works on social justice and human rights efforts as well as the promotion of health parity.
Primarily in the nonprofit and public sectors, Ms. Gloner’s career focused on community health education and promotion, research, health communication, policy, advocacy, training, and administration. A child of Filipino immigrants, she is the first in her family to graduate from college. She received a Bachelor in Combined Sciences from Santa Clara University along with advanced degrees in public health (MPH from San Jose State University) and business (MBA from UC Berkeley's Haas School of Business). Currently, she serves as Chief Executive Officer for Project Safety Net, a collective impact dedicated youth resiliency, mental health promotion, & suicide prevention. Served as adjunct faculty for San Jose State University as well as guest lectured for DeAnza Junior College, Stanford University School of Medicine, and local high schools. Also consults on nonprofit management, health education, and community capacity building projects.
Mary has several County of Santa Clara appointments: Mental Health Services Act (Proposition 63) Stakeholders Leadership Committee, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) Task Force, and the Race and Health Disparities Community Board. Serves as Vice-Chair on the City of San Jose’s Council Appointment Advisory Commission. In response to COVID-19, serves on the Emotional & Support Care Team for Collaborating Agencies' Relief Effort (CADRE) in Santa Clara County.
President & Chief Executive Officer
Asian Americans for Community Involvement
Sarita Kohli is the President & CEO of AACI, Asian Americans for Community Involvement. AACI is a community-based organization focused on providing culturally sensitive high-quality health and wellness services to underserved populations in Santa Clara County. Sarita is passionate about empowering marginalized individuals and communities, through increasing access to health and wellness services. Her work encompasses many such communities, including victims of domestic violence, individuals with mental illness, survivors of trauma, refugees and low-income immigrant populations. Prior to her current position, Sarita has led AACI’s behavioral health and wellness programs, using her business acumen and compassion to expand access to culturally sensitive services for the neediest in our communities. Sarita holds an MBA and is also a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. In 2011, Sarita was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown to the State Board of Behavioral Sciences, where she is serving her second term. In 2015, Sarita was awarded the Woman of Influence award the Silicon Valley Business Journal. In May 2017, Sarita received a commendation from Congressman Ro Khanna for her work in serving the APA community.
Preisdent & Chief Executive Officer
Erin O’Brien has been the President & CEO of Community Solutions since 2003. She has devoted her career to meeting the growing and changing needs of South Santa Clara County and the surrounding communities. She is fiercely dedicated to ensuring that children, families, and individuals have the support and services they need to create positive changes in their lives. Erin is active in various county efforts that impact vulnerable and underserved populations. She is the current President of the Behavioral Health Contractors Association of Santa Clara County and sits on the Santa Clara County Juvenile Justice Community Collaborative, the Santa Clara County Mental Health Services Act Leadership Committee, and the Silicon Valley Council of Nonprofits Leadership Group. Erin has also participated in numerous planning processes, most recently the South County PEI Planning Team and the Santa Clara County Suicide Prevention Strategic Planning Team. Earlier positions included President of the Association of Mental Health Contract Agencies for the County of Santa Clara, Chair of the Juvenile Detention Reform Post-Disposition Group, and member of the Social Services Advisory Council. As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Erin holds a Master of Social Work degree and a Bachelor's degree in Humanities from San Jose State University.
Susie M. Rivera
VP of Youth Voice Initiatives and Executive Director of Santa Clara County
Fresh Lifelines for Youth (FLY)
Susie currently serves as the VP of Youth Voice Initiatives and Executive Director of Santa Clara County for Fresh Lifelines for Youth (FLY) and has been with FLY since 2001. Over the years, Susie has worn many different hats from overseeing programs, bridging programs and development, and working with partners in our community and systems. Throughout her tenure at FLY she has always remained grounded in the importance of youth voice, youth transformation, and overseeing all youth voice initiatives internally and externally at FLY.
Additionally, Susie is a Lecturer at San Jose State University in the College of Health and Human Sciences, teaching in the departments of Justice Studies and Public Health for classes titled Drugs and Society, Juvenile Justice, Justice Management and Ethics, Media and Justice, Police and Society, Penal Policy, Race, Class, Gender, and the Law, and JS100W/PH100 writing workshop. She has been teaching since 2007 and through her teaching she hopes to impact the next wave of individuals who will be working in the system to utilize a human rights approach while being positive change agents and advocating for and with our community members. Susie is passionate about youth development, system change work, justice and equity, community building, and working closely with stakeholders and the community to come up with viable solutions and effective policy changes to Juvenile Justice issues.
Susie earned her B.S. in Criminal Justice Administration and Sociology from San Jose State University. Also, received her Master in Justice Studies where her thesis focused on the effects of incarceration on Latinx families and Women in the system. In addition, Susie obtained her Juris Doctorate, her Certification as a Professional Coactive Coach (CPCC), Certification in Fundraising Management from Indiana University, and Certification as a Victim Offender Mediator.
Susie was born and raised in East San Jose where she witnessed and experienced first-hand many of the issues confronting our youth. She has dedicated her career helping young people reach their best selves while simultaneously doing system change work to ensure the system becomes more equitable and just. Rivera has received awards for her efforts in the community and to name a few she received an award for Diversity Enhancement, Hispanic Heritage Leadership Award from the NFL, and the Outstanding Lecturer Award at SJSU.
Susie has three adult children, a grandchild, and still resides in the beautiful East Foothills of San Jose with her husband John. In her free time she is a Pitbull enthusiast and spends lots of time training her dogs, enjoying cruising on a Sunday afternoon in her classic car, traveling to new places, and enjoying the beauty of nature.
Vice President Public Policy and Special Initiatives
Uplift Family Services
Eva Terrazas currently works at Uplift Family Services where she serves as the Vice President of Public Policy and Special Initiatives. Her focus is in the fields of State and City legislative, government administration, and public policy advising. With her extensive experience in public policy and consulting she has excellent analytical, policy development, strategic thinking, and program management skills. She is well known for being self-directed and able to respond thoughtfully and flexibly in a highly sensitive, fast-paced, and deadline-driven environment. Some of her passions include meaningful community involvement especially relating to sustainability, creating efficiency, ensuring quality programs, and maintaining rigorous administrative oversight. She has proven herself in several fields and positions and is dedicated in her service to the community.
Associate Executive Director
West Valley Community Services
Sujatha Venkatraman is currently the Associate Executive Director for West Valley Community Services and oversees their Client Services, Emergency Assistance Network (EAN), Housing and key services. She has been with WVCS since 2008. Previously she worked as the Senior Family Development Specialist for the Little City Foundation and before that she was a Behavioral Specialist for the United Cerebal Palsy of Georgia/South Carolina. In total she has 15 years of non-profit experience in program and policy development, strategic planning, grants and contract management, curriculum development and implementation, and community organization. She has a Masters in Psychology from University of West Georgia, graduate of Leadership San Jose, MSW from Dehli School of Social Work.