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Staff

Kaylan Billeci Molina

Kaylan Billeci Molina

Career Counselor

Kaylan is a recent graduate with a BA in Human Development from Cal State East Bay. She will be working as a College and Career Counselor in our Road Map to College program. She attended Los Medanos College before transferring to CSEB, so she has walked the same path as many of our Road Map college students that are navigating the community college system. Before joining Opportunity Junction in 2018, Kaylan was a Facility Manager for a nonprofit Crisis Nursery in Concord. She has an Associate’s Degree in Child Development, and worked at LMC’s Child Study Center as well.

"My favorite part of working at Opportunity Junction is being able to help create positive change in the community I grew up in. I also enjoy working alongside passionate and dedicated individuals."

Alexis Bonn

Alexis Bonn

Director of Development

Alexis joined our team as Director of Development in 2019 with a strong background in marketing and communications. After graduating from Azusa Pacific University with a Bachelor's in Psychology and a Masters of Business Administration, Alexis honed her marketing, communications, and social media skills in the banking and electrical construction sectors. At the same time, she helped a number of nonprofits launch websites and social media presences in her spare time. Now she can apply her talents full time in the non-profit sector!

Aly Brown

Aly Brown

Grant Writer

Aly recently joined OJ in January 2022. She first heard of our organization while editing one of our press releases at the local newspaper years ago and remained interested in our work ever since. Now a proud member of our team, Aly is using her reporting/journalism background to create our grant proposals. She's also leading the charge on our bimonthly newsletters and working behind the scenes of our social media accounts. (So make sure to say hi on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.)

"When you watch those grads take the stage and listen as they share how Opportunity Junction has fundamentally transformed their lives, that's powerful. People who never thought they could are learning that they absolutely can. I feel so privileged to work for an organization that's helping our community overcome barriers in more ways than one."

Carmela Buenrostro

Carmela Buenrostro

HCP Alumni Career Coach

Carmela is not a new member of the OJ family. In 2018, she was the first professional development instructor for the Healthcare Career Pathways CNA class at Mt. Diablo Adult Education. Her path took her away for almost 2 years, and she returned to OJ in the summer of 2021 as the HCP Alumni Coach, a new position. As the Alumni Coach, she is able to continue being a supportive partner to the CNA graduates as they continue their professional journey at the nursing facilities and beyond! Carmela has a Bachelor of Science in Adolescent/Adult Psychology from St. Mary’s College of California and has worked in the healthcare industry for almost 20 years.

"The most rewarding part of my job is to see a participant grow in their skills and confidence. They enter the CNA program with thoughts that they never would have had the ability or means to acquire an education that would be the gateway to their healthcare career path. Through hard work, dedication and the support from our program, they become a vital part of healthcare. Some have moved on to LVN and RN programs and they remember that Opportunity Junction was there, by their side during the journey, to remind them they had the strength, spirit and heart to do it!"

Alana Chisholm

Alana Chisholm

Computer Skills Instructor

Alana has a long history with Opportunity Junction, first as a graduate of our Administrative Careers Training (ACT, formerly JTPP) program in 2011, then as a Volunteer Trainer in our evening Technology Center, and since 2014 as a Session Leader for the Do-It-Yourself Tax Assistance program. Meanwhile, Alana transitioned into teaching from the administrative field and served as an instructor in computer skills at Liberty Adult Education and Rubicon Programs. She is a credentialed Microsoft Office Specialist several times over and joined the teaching staff for the ACT in 2019.

Ja'Nae Craig

Ja'Nae Craig

Executive Assistant

Ja'Nae joined our team as the Executive Assistant in November of 2019. Ja'Nae had most recently been managing multiple offices of Block Advisors (H&R Block). She worked her way up from Receptionist to Tax Preparer to Multi-Office Manager. Ja'Nae is a real go-getter and holds three (count 'em, three) Associates degrees from Los Medanos College (Business Administration, Accounting, and Liberal Arts).

Alissa Friedman

Alissa Friedman

President/Chief Executive Officer

Alissa has been with Opportunity Junction since 2001 and has led the organization since 2003. Before joining the organization, she worked in software development for eight years, as an attorney for Morrison & Foerster for two years, and as managing partner of the law firm of Friend & Friedman for five years. In 2004, Alissa completed a fellowship with the Women's Policy Institute and helped draft and successfully advocate for S.B. 1639, the Education Works! bill. From 2005 to 2009, she served as a Commissioner on the Contra Costa County Commission for Women. Originally from Evanston, Illinois, she holds a bachelor's degree in physics from Harvard University and a J.D. from the University of California at Berkeley.

"I get the deepest possible satisfaction from hearing 'I love my job' from an alum who pops in for a visit. I smile and reply, 'so do I.' My favorite times are when we're tackling a challenge, and each of us contributes ideas from our own perspective. There's the sense of shared purpose and camaraderie. From childhood, I've believed that this work represents the highest form of charity: helping others do for themselves."

Natalie Georgia

Natalie Georgia

Manager of Personal Development

Natalie has taught life skills and provided case management services since late 2000, and is responsible for recruitment and outreach as our Manager of Personal Development. Ms. Georgia has studied computers and business administration at Los Medanos College and was one of the first alumni of the Administrative Careers Training Program.

"I love working at Opportunity Junction because I get to witness the transformative power of change every day."

Nicole Hall

Nicole Hall

Professional Skills Instructor

A 2018 alumna of our Administrative Careers Training Program, Nicole is also a Certified Nursing Assistant with experience working with the medical industry helping those in need of rehabilitation and restorative care. In her role, she provides life skills and professional skills to our classes of CNA’s training in partnership with Mt. Diablo Adult Education and Ombudsman Services.

"Now, I get to share my experiences and knowledge with those who share the same motivation for helping others as I do. What a blessing"

Melinda Johnson

Melinda Johnson

Vice President of Administration

An Antioch resident since 2015, Melinda joined our staff as Administrative Manager in April 2016. She became our Director of Administration in July 2017, managing all aspects finance, human resources, and facilities for the office. Melinda has 25 years of progressive administration experience in small and start-up businesses, as well as in the non-profit sector.

"I love working for an organization where I can make a difference in the lives of others. Living in Antioch myself, it means a lot that we help others in my and neighboring communities to gain the skills and confidence necessary to find fulfilling employment."

Dionne Moeller

Dionne Moeller

Healthcare Career Pathways Program Manager

After graduating from high school, Dionne Moeller pursued a career in healthcare where she spent 20 years. When she decided to change course and pursue a career in Counseling, she enrolled at Los Medanos College with plans to transfer to a four-year university. At Los Medanos, she earned an AA with an emphasis in Behavioral Science and Social Science before transferring to Cal State East Bay where she earned a BA in Sociology and minored in Human Development. She really wanted to work helping people achieve their dreams and reach their personal goals just as she had. That’s when Dionne landed her dream job with Opportunity Junction where she now serves as the Healthcare Career Pathways Program Manager.

"I thoroughly enjoy working here at Opportunity Junction because it gives me an opportunity to make a positive contribution to the very community where I'm raising my own children. It brings me great joy and satisfaction to help give young adults a path to personal growth and self-sufficiency."

Viviann Negrete Mosqueda

Viviann Negrete Mosqueda

Career Counselor

Viviann is a Pittsburg native who joined our team in December 2021. Having worked many different jobs throughout college, including retail, food service, warehousing, and administrative positions, Viviann knew that she wanted to help fellow job seekers find their path. She became a mentor for students as a Peer Coach and a Tutor, and now proudly serves the community she grew up in. She graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 2020 with a BA in Latin American and Latinx Studies/Sociology combined, and Spanish studies.

"Knowing you are making a difference and impacting your community in a positive way is what truly motivates me. I take a lot of pride in where I come from and in the work we do."

Hilarie O'Connor

Hilarie O'Connor

Alumni Manager and Career Counselor

Hilarie joins the OJ team as our Alumni Manager and Career Counselor for our Administrative Careers Training Program. Hilarie has worked with and for non-profit organizations throughout her career. Hilarie has a background in both counseling and recruiting. She received her B.A. from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo in Organizational Psychology and has an M.A. in Psychology and interned as an MFT.

"I am proud to say that I work at Opportunity Junction. The staff, and the people we serve, all have in common the desire to work hard and help others."

Nadya Poveda

Nadya Poveda

Program Coordinator

Nadya Poveda joined our team in 2019 as the Program Coordinator for the Technology Center. Nadya is a seasoned administrative professional, having graduated from Opportunity Junction's job training program in 2008. Bilingual in English and Spanish, she provides a warm welcome for every person who comes into the Technology Center.

Debbie Rich

Debbie Rich

CNA Instructor

Debbie joined us in June 2021 as a CNA instructor. She grew up in Antioch, attended Sutter, Park and graduated from Antioch High School. She has worked as a nurse in our community for the last 27 years. She has a passion for healthcare, and in particular, advocating for her patients.

"At this stage of my life I’m wanting to give back and am excited to have the chance to do so through Opportunity Junction. I firmly believe in helping people become self-sufficient and am excited to teach this CNA class to be able to accomplish that!"

Brianna Robinson

Brianna Robinson

Vice President of Programs

Brianna, a former high school teacher, coach and administrator, joined Opportunity Junction in 2007 and serves as our Director of Programs. She completed the extensive Neighborhood Builders leadership program as the organization's Emerging Leader and serves as a representative on the Alcohol and Other Drugs Advisory Board for Contra Costa County. Brianna holds M.A. degrees from Temple University in both Educational Psychology and Educational Administration. She received her B.A. in English from Furman University.

"I love being part of an organization that truly impacts our community. We serve an area in great need, and I feel lucky to work here with the most dedicated and caring people I know."

Janelle Stauffer

Janelle Stauffer

Program Coordinator

Janelle has recently joined our team as our new Program Assistant. Janelle comes with over 5 years of project management and customer service experience in the gym industry. When it comes to customer service, Janelle strives to make sure the customer has the absolute best experience and helping people brings so much joy to her life.

"If you're not making someone else's life better, then you're not making the best of your time. Your life will become better by making other lives better."

Annabelle Villanueva

Annabelle Villanueva

Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator

Annabelle joined Opportunity Junction in February 2019 with several years of varied administrative experience. She previously worked as the Events and Training Coordinator for UCSF Office of Diversity and Outreach, giving her solid skills and enthusiasm for her new role as Outreach Coordinator. A recent transplant from San Francisco, Annabelle and her family now live in Pittsburg and she has eagerly committed to impacting the community through her work.

"I always wanted a job where I could make a difference. It is my passion to help people and it is rewarding working at Opportunity Junction. I love to see the outcome of our work: people getting jobs!"

Michelle Wade

Michelle Wade

Lead Program Manager for the Adminstrative Careers Training Program

Michelle joined us in 2014 as our Manager of Alumni Programs and now serves as Program Manager for our flagship Administrative Careers Training Program. Michelle entered the career counseling field after more than 15 years in banking operations and management. She holds a B.S. in Human Resource Management from Devry University.

"Hearing the success stories of those we serve and the incredible barriers that they have overcome truly inspires me. These stories serve as proof that no barrier is insurmountable. I'm proud to be a part of an organization that supports others in achieving their personal and professional goals."

Nolan Yee

Nolan Yee

Data Analyst

Nolan joined our staff in October 2019 after 8 years of progressive experience in analytical chemistry in method development with Impax Laboratories. One of his proudest achievements during that time was leading a team of senior scientists, research associates, and scientists in the successful execution of a complex 32 part in-vitro bioequivalence study. That study required the automation of ~200,000 calculations, and resulted in a 600+ page bioequivalence study report with approximately 16,000 pages of appendix material. Drawing meaning out of our wage, demographics, and program data should be a piece of cake after that! Nolan holds a Bachelor's of Science with Highest Honors in Chemical Biology from the University of California at Berkeley.

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Board of Directors

Linda Best

Linda Best

Former President and CEO

East Bay Leadership Council

Linda Best is the retired CEO of the East Bay Leadership Council, a private sector public policy organization and retired Executive Director of the Contra Costa Economic Partnership. She also serves on the board for STAND! for Families Free of Violence and the East Bay Regional Park District Advisory Committee. She received her BA and MA degrees from Stanford University.

"I feel privileged to serve on Opportunity Junction's board of directors. The training and services OJ provides our clients truly change lives in a positive and transformative way. It is so rewarding to see these individuals obtain a well-paying job, gain self-esteem, be able to support their families and give back to the community."

Carol Ann Barber

Carol Ann Barber

Owner

Carol Ann Barber Consulting

"I am excited to be involved with Opportunity Junction and serve on the Board of Directors. The organization's mission is a perfect fit with my passion for community service as well as my professional experience in job placement and recruiting. Opportunity Junction provides a foundation for long term success not just in a work setting, but also in life skills."

Maria Capote

Maria Capote

Management Consultant Delivery Analyst

Accenture

Maria Capote is a Management Consultant Delivery Assistant for Accenture: a diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) leader helping clients develop, execute, and adopt change initiatives. Maria is passionate about disrupting inequality, fostering inclusivity, and promoting allyship through action. She is also a 2017 alumni of OJ's Administrative Career Training (ACT) program. Maria left OJ to work for Future State, a consulting firm that became part of Accenture in 2021. She also holds an A.S. degree in Business Office Administration from Los Medanos College. Maria's volunteer service includes a term as the president of the Antioch Band Backers Association, as well as projects with OJ, Project Homeless Connect, the PTA, and more.

Raushanah Davis

Raushanah Davis

Audit Director

PricewaterhouseCoopers

Raushanah Davis is a licensed Certified Public Accountant and has 15 years of experience in public accounting. Raushanah has spent most of her career serving retail and consumer, not-for-profit and healthcare companies. Born and raised in the Bay Area, she graduated from St. Mary’s College of California with a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration majoring in Accounting and minoring in Economics.

"I believe in the quote 'opportunity plus preparation equals success' and that providing assistance and resources to help people find good jobs epitomizes that quote. Serving on the Opportunity Junction board provides me with the opportunity to work with individuals and an organization that shares in that vision."

Kevin Dilworth

Kevin Dilworth

Realtor

Coldwell Banker

Kevin recently concluded a 25-year career as an accomplished Information Technology leader supporting two of California’s largest employers Chevron and Oracle. He recently returned to the real estate profession where he previously owned and operated an independent brokerage for 11 years. Kevin has partnered with Coldwell Banker Realty to service the East Bay real estate market.

"I found Opportunity Junction back in 2012 at a Chevron Volunteer Fair. I was initially drawn in by the mission of Opportunity Junction, and immediately signed up to be a business math instructor. Once involved, I got to see for myself lives forever being changed. I have a passion for giving back to my community, and I’m excited to have the privilege of serving on the OJ Board of Directors."

Marc Gallo

Marc Gallo

Financial Services Partner

PricewaterhouseCoopers

Marc Gallo has dedicated his professional life to the use of technology to drive strategic visions, achieve business goals, expand products and services, tap into new markets and pursue operational excellence. He has spent 24 years with PricewaterhouseCoopers, currently as a Financial Services Partner providing digital and technology innovation to Banking and Insurance clients. Previously, Marc served as a Managing Director at BearingPoint, leading first their Financial Services Technology Delivery practice in the US and Canada, then their Banking practice. Marc began his career at Argonne National Laboratory after earning a B.S. in Computer Science at the University of Illinois and an M.B.A. from Lewis University.

Kathy Jones

Kathy Jones

Chief Counsel, Environmental

Pacific Gas and Electric Company

"I have long supported and admired the work of Opportunity Junction and am honored to serve on the Board of Directors. The organization provides training and life skills that transform lives by developing the foundation for independence and self-sufficiency. The staff is incredible - determined and dedicated to working with each participant to ensure success. I look forward to working with OJ in continuing its mission to fight poverty in the East Bay."

Young Kim

Young Kim

Senior Manager, Software Engineering

LinkedIn

Young Kim is a technology leader with 18+ years of experience. He has led software engineering teams at companies ranging from startups such as Nerdwallet to big names like LinkedIn. A Bay Area native from Hayward, California, Young has been living in Contra Costa County since 2016 and has a bachelor's degree in computer science from UCSD.

"As a child of immigrant parents, I witnessed firsthand how a hard work ethic and a strong support system provided me the opportunity to find success. Being a resident of Contra Costa County myself, I’m excited to give back and serve my community."

Kenneth Leung

Kenneth Leung

Technology Manager

Tipping Point Community

Ken is an experienced technology professional dedicated to supporting mission-oriented organizations and individuals. He has been the architect of six end-to-end Salesforce implementation. He first got to know Opportunity Junction when researching possible options for sharing referral information between nonprofits' Salesforce implementations.

Pamela Powers

Pamela Powers

Vice President of Training and Corporate Development

Bay Alarm Company

Pamela has had a long and fruitful career working with Bay Alarm for over 25 years. She is a senior business leader who believes that strengthening an organization’s performance begins with focusing programs on culture and people. Training is her passion, and seeing employees grow their careers and minds is her goal and commitment.

"Understanding your potential is all about your internal drive to be better. I believe that Opportunity Junction is committed to finding that potential in those that might not see it just yet in themselves. Their journey is about self-discovery, self-reliance and independence. I am grateful that they are allowing me to travel with them to assist in the voyage."

Tom Ramirez

Tom Ramirez

President

Tom C. Ramirez Construction Co., Inc.

Tom Ramirez is a retired Operations and Maintenance Supervisor for the Contra Costa Water District who is also an entrepreneur and business owner in the fields of construction and investment.

"I began supporting Opportunity Junction in 2014 when I was introduced to their work and attended their annual fundraising gala. I am excited to join the board of an organization of the highest quality that provides a successful path to a meaningful career and many valuable life skills for their students with continuing support for the alumni."

Renee Reid

Renee Reid

Staff UX Design Researcher

LinkedIn

Renee Reid is a Staff UX Design Researcher at LinkedIn with over 20 years of professional experience in various roles including Project Management, Customer Experience, Sales and User Experience. She is also the LinkedIn Campus Lead for the Black Inclusion Group BIG (an Employee Resource group (ERG), a Boys and Girls Club mentor, as well as a Professional Mentor with TechWomen, an initiative of the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs created by the Obama Administration.

Matthew Riley

Matthew Riley

Director, Head of Risk and Oversight for Portfolio Compliance

Blackrock

Matthew Riley has over 20 years of experience in the Investment Management industry. He has led a variety of teams during his tenure, most recently focusing on Risk and Oversight. Originally from Los Angeles, Matthew moved with his family to Contra Costa County in 2008. Matthew graduated from Loyola Marymount University with a Bachelors of Business Administration in Finance.

Donna Rucker

Donna Rucker

Site Director

Kaiser Permanente

Donna Rucker leads Site operations at the Delta Fair Medical Office Building. Donna joined Kaiser Permanente in January 2007 with over 20 years of Healthcare and Organizational Leadership experience. During her tenure at Kaiser Permanente, Donna has led various teams responsible for the planning and execution of strategic healthcare initiatives. Donna earned a master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from California Coast University and a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from the University of Phoenix. Donna is an enthusiastic education advocate who partners with Kaiser Leadership University and has taught courses in Emotional Intelligence and Service Improvement for more than 10 years.

Tara D. Sanders

Tara D. Sanders

Manager, Workforce & Economic Development

Contra Costa Community College District

Tara Sanders is the Manager of Workforce and Economic Development for the Contra Costa Community College District. She enjoys her career working in higher education, as well as running a small consulting company. Her professional focuses are in strategic program planning and systems alignment. This has allowed her to event plan for hundreds, make investments in today's youth, as well as be a part of community transformation simultaneously. As a liaison between colleges and companies, she develops strategic partnerships focusing in workforce development. These partnerships include alignment with county and federal workforce systems (WIOA), developing internships, community collaborations and event/program planning and logistics.

Justin Santiago

Justin Santiago

VP / Relationship Manager | Services

U.S. Citi Commercial Bank

Matt Tillman

Matt Tillman

President

Plateau Data Services

Matt Tillman serves as President of Plateau Data Services, a portfolio company of Caivis (investors include David A. Steinberg and John Sculley). Mr. Tillman previously served as the Senior Vice President and General Manager for Zeta Global's Financial Services business where he had overall responsibility for managing the P&L of the financial services division. Prior to joining Zeta, Mr. Tillman served as the Head of Sales of Adchemy Actions, a business unit of Adchemy, Inc. Prior to Adchemy, Mr. Tillman co-founded FastFind.com, an internet marketing services company funded by Dan Gilbert (CEO of Quicken Loans and owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers) and sold to Bankrate, Inc. Mr. Tillman has also served in senior sales roles at Bankrate, Inc., GetSmart.com, a division of Providian Financial and Wells Fargo Bank. He graduated with a BA in Political Science from the University of California at Los Angeles.

Karolyn Wilhelmsen

Karolyn Wilhelmsen

Director of HR Systems, Analytics and Payroll

CSAA Insurance Group

"Over the course of my 20+ years in human resources I have discovered a passion for developing tools to support employees in meeting their career goals. I’m eager to work with such a like-minded organization supporting members of the community in meeting their personal goals."

 

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Advisory Council

Iris Archuleta, CEO, Emerald HPC International, LLC

Keith Archuleta, Founder/President, Emerald HPC International, LLC

Jodi Avina, Director of Recruiting Operations, CFOs 2GO

Jacqueline Bhagavan, 2015 Mrs. California, Host, Complexion Kitchen

Christine Bonifacio, VP, Program Manager, Wells Fargo at Work Program

Sandy Bustillo, Welfare-to-Work Manager, Contra Costa Employment and Human Services

George Carter, Business Services Representative, Contra Costa County Workforce Development Board

Val Davis, East County Advocate

Osbaldo Garcia, Vice President and Branch Manager, Mechanics Bank

Sue George, Director, Center for Teaching Excellence, Haas School of Business

Hon. Steven Glazer, Senator, California State Senate

Hon. Federal Glover, County Supervisor, Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors

Laurie Huffman, Professor, Los Medanos College

Jim Jakel, Founding Board Member

Rick Kaiser, CPA, CFP, Temen, Kaiser & Cameron, CPAs, LLP

Christine Lambert, Regional Recruiter, Nelson Staffing

Angela Lowrey, Public Information Manager, Delta Diablo Sanitation District

Curtis McAdams, Relationship Banker, Umpqua Bank

Meryl Natchez, CEO (Retired), TechProse

Richard Pagano, State Farm Agent, Antioch Chamber of Commerce Executive Director

Sharon Pappas, Principal, Antioch Area Community Fund

Nancy Parent, Former Mayor, City of Pittsburg

Ricardo Perez, DDS, Owner, Cosmetic Dental Spa

Laurie Phillips, Diablo Valley College

Juan Prieto, Family Development Specialist, California Human Development Corporation

Deb Rivera, Senior Director, Operations, Educational Testing Service

Hon. Kevin Romick, Councilmember, City of Oakley

Jackie Seeno, Land Development, Community Relations Manager, Owner, Cyrus Land Investments, LLC, A.D. Seeno Construction Co. & Discovery Builders, Inc

Tonya Smith, Senior Communications Coordinator, Bayer, Opportunity Junction Alumni, Class 5

René Tucker, Employer Liaison, EASTBAYWorks-Brentwood, Opportunity Junction Alumni, Class 8

David Wahl, Manager of Workforce and Economic Development, Los Medanos College

Charlotte Will, Product Marketing Manager, Google

Alma Williams-Palmer, Procurement Coordinator, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, Opportunity Junction Alumni, Class 9

 

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Alumni Council

Composed entirely of alumni of our Job Training and Placement Program, the Alumni Council has input into the strategic direction of Opportunity Junction programs and has input on activities for Alumni.

The members of the Alumni Council are:

Brittany Pierce

Brittany Pierce

Class 58

Chocho Win

Chocho Win

Class 59

Debora Carcache

Debora Carcache

Class 59

Destiny Corral

Destiny Corral

Class 62

Frank Kolsut

Frank Kolsut

Class 54

Lada Velichkov

Lada Velichkov

Class 40

Rachel Spangler

Rachel Spangler

Class 54

Shantavia Killings

Shantavia Killings

Class 62