Board of Directors

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Liza Seltzer (President) is retired; formerly she was Executive VP and COO at ACI Clinical, as well as its co-owner. Liza served in management positions in the pharmaceutical and public health spaces for over 25 years, including several years in Latin America. She was also a leader in the Quality arena, having served as Chief Judge for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, a Member of the Board of Overseers for the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program, and as a Board Member for the state-level Baldrige program, the Keystone Alliance for Performance Excellence. More recently, Liza joined the Board of Directors of the Rosenbach of the Free Library of Philadelphia and became a certified yoga instructor. She has a BA from Georgetown University and a MA in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School at Tufts University. Liza has been a member of MCC’s Carnation Club for over 20 years, chaired the 2015 and 2016 Celebrating Mothers events, and currently serves as President of MCC’s Board of Directors.

Years of Service: 8

 

Arun Prabhakaran (Vice President) is the Executive Vice President of the Urban Affairs Coalition (UAC), where he oversees all of the $46 M organization’s operations. For 50 years, the Urban Affairs Coalition, the largest African-American led fiscal sponsor in the country, has been a home for doers and dreamers, including more than 80 Program Partners that work tirelessly to change their neighborhoods and communities. Today, UAC continues to unite government, business, neighborhoods, and individuals to improve quality of life, build wealth in urban communities and solve critical issues. Most recently, Prabhakaran entered the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office (DAO) to serve as Chief of Staff to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner in January 2018, following an historic election in 2017 that saw record-high turnout for Philadelphia District Attorney. Arun planned and directed the administrative, financial, and operational activities for the DAO, the fifth largest prosecution office in the United States, serving 1.5 M citizens of the City and County of Philadelphia with an annual budget of $48 M.

Formerly, Mr. Prabhakaran was the Senior Vice President and Chief External Affairs Officer for the Urban Affairs Coalition, where he oversaw UAC’s External Affairs work in fund development, new business, government relations, strategic partnerships, board development and relations, marketing and communications, and community affairs. His previous professional experience includes: Government Relations and Public Sector Sales for a public policy IT firm; founding the city’s first youth-oriented harm reduction drop-in center, which served homeless, drug-addicted youth; working as an independent consultant to nonprofits, government, political candidates, and other institutions; and a decade of grassroots organizing experience working to advance human rights and end poverty in the U.S. Currently, Mr. Prabhakaran serves in a variety of leadership capacities in the community, including: Maternity Care Coalition, Vice President, Board; and Philadelphia Works, Research and Policy Committee.

Years of Service: 7

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Ebony Staton-Weidman, is Southeast Regional Director for U.S. Senator Bob Casey. In her role, she oversees all outreach and operations for Southeastern Pennsylvania— Philadelphia, Montgomery, Delaware, Chester, and Bucks Counties. Ebony acts as the Senator’s liaison to government, community and nonprofit organizations, private sector, and other constituencies. Prior to her role with Senator Casey, Ebony held strategic roles at Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business, Fairmount Ventures, and Comcast. She was responsible for brand strategy, integrated marketing, and relationship development and management with a variety of stakeholders including businesses, professional associations, nonprofits, government agencies, and foundations. 7/29/20 Ebony sits on a number of nonprofit boards, including Community Integrated Services and Wissahickon Charter School, and Maternity Care Coalition. Ebony is a proud graduate of DiverseForce On Boards, a board leadership program led by ImpactED of the University of Pennsylvania and DiverseForce.

Years of Service: 1

 

Saul Epstein is a business entrepreneur and has a career spanning over three decades in the corporate world. He is currently the CEO and owner of Leonard A Feinberg, Inc., an importer of women’s clothing based in Bensalem, PA and New York City. Until recently, Saul was the CEO of Global Harness Systems which has locations in Texas, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Mexico and India. Previously he was a Principal  with  Opinion Research Corporation, Robinson Alarm Company and Crossway Ventures, Inc and  Partner at Ernst and Young, LLP. Saul has also served in the military  for the Army Security Agency, Reserve Unit. Saul is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) , Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a member of the Pennsylvania & New Jersey Bar.  In addition to his professional experience, he has served on the boards of the Committee of Seventy and the Beth David Reform Congregation. Since 1999, Saul has been a loyal and long-standing member of MCC’s  Finance Committee.  Saul volunteers with Big Brothers/ Big Sisters Program. He is married to Roberta Epstein and has two adult children.

Years of Service: 9

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Ismael Alvarez Jr., is the Division Director of Center Based Services at Children’s Crisis Treatment Center (CCTC). A graduate of Temple University’s Counseling Psychology Program, he is a Licensed Professional Counselor with over 10 years of experience working in non-profit mental health settings, serving children and adolescents with emotional/behavioral problems along with their families. In his current position, he manages the daily functioning of six programs (Outpatient, Trauma, Therapeutic Nursery, Acute Partial, and Parent/Caregiver Services, Physical Health and Behavioral Health Integration) at CCTC. Mr. Alvarez’s commitment to his own development as a clinician and supervisor makes him a well-informed, compassionate Director, who manages to keep hope springing eternally in a very challenging environment.

“As a Latino male, born and raised in North Philadelphia,I have experienced and understand the obstacles facing the lives of the people and communities served by MCC and I am proud to give time and effort to an organization that supports communities like the one I grew up in that has shaped who I am today. Serving as a member of MCC’s Board of Directors will give me an opportunity to share my experience, knowledge, and expertise of the human condition and particularly the issues and adverse childhood experiences that impact the lives of young people and their families in hopes of leading them towards healthier and positive lifestyles and futures.”

Years of Service: 7

 

Arthur Gimenez  is currently the Director of Business Development at PIDC’s Business Lending department and has several years of experience in lead generation, business model evaluation, and financial statements analysis. Previously, Arthur worked as a Director for The Enterprise Center Capital Corporation where he oversaw business development, underwriting, and portfolio management activities. Arthur received his MBA from Temple University’s Fox School of Business with a concentration in Finance and Marketing. Before pursuing his MBA, Arthur was a management consultant for Accenture’s Finance and Performance Management practice and assisted clients such as Comcast, and T-Mobile and Time Inc.

Years of Service: 2 

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Megan Knowlton Balne, Esq. is a partner at Hyland Levin Shapiro where she focuses on employment and commercial litigation. She clerked for the late Honorable Jerome B. Simandle, Former Chief U.S. District Judge for the District of New Jersey and for the Honorable Ronald E. Bookbinder, Former Assignment Judge of the New Jersey Superior Court for Burlington County. Megan is a graduate of Ramapo College and Rutgers University School of Law-Camden. At Rutgers, Megan was Editor-inChief of the Rutgers Journal of Law and Religion and represented victims of domestic violence. Megan also has a passion for the theater arts and regularly participates as an actor, director or stage manager in different productions. Megan lives in Cinnaminson, New Jersey with her husband, Tommy, her vivacious six-year-old son, Sammy and her toddler twins, Abigail and Lillian. Megan is a graduate of the United Way Board Leadership program and serves on MCC’s Governance Committee.

Years of Service: 5

 

Keith Daviston (Treasurer) is the Chief Financial Officer for the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office. Keith is a seasoned finance veteran with more than 25 years of both for-profit and non-profit experience. Previously, Keith served as the Chief Financial Officer of Arbill Industries Inc. Arbill is a leading manufacturer and distributor of industrial safety products, and a provider of safety consulting and training services. Keith also served as the Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for the Philadelphia Housing Authority and the CFO of the Urban Affairs Coalition. Keith has also held senior roles in the banking and energy sectors.

Daviston attained the rank of Major (retired) in the Delaware National Guard and is a Certified Public Accountant. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees of Peirce College in Philadelphia and as the Chair of the Audit & Investment Committee. Keith aslo serves as the Board President of the Delaware Church. Keith is a graduate of Slippery Rock University with a BS in Accounting.

Years of Service: 5

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Lisa Farnin (Secretary) is an accomplished marketing professional, project manager, and program manager with more than 25 years of experience in the areas of systems integration, consulting, sales, marketing and corporate citizenship with IBM and Ford Motor Company. Lisa has been recognized locally and nationally for her leadership in team building, negotiating, problem solving, and service. She has served on a number of nonprofit boards and has experience with startups, mergers, and much in between. Lisa is a 20+ year breast cancer survivor, diagnosed when pregnant with her second child. She has a BS in Engineering from Lehigh University and an MS in Computer Science from Villanova University.  Lisa resides in Bucks County, PA with her husband and two college age children.

Years of Service: 4

 

Katherine Foy, MSW is the Corporate Compliance Officer at Christ’s Home, Incorporated in Warminster, Pennsylvania. She safeguards operational and related activities through the development of robust policies and procedures that ensure legal, ethical, and proper conduct. Prior to her current position as Christ’s Home Corporate Compliance Officer, Katherine was the Senior Vice President of Quality, Compliance and Risk at Acenda, Incorporated in Glassboro, New Jersey. Katherine inspired a culture of continuous quality improvement and excellence with the context of integrated healthcare and population health. Katherine was also the Director of Compliance and Consumer Risk for the Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC) and served as a Federal Project Officer/Program Specialist with the United States Department of Health and Human Services for over 14 years. Professionally and philanthropically, Katherine has more than 30 years of experience in social services, economic empowerment, and education. She is an exceptional collaborator who partners with stakeholders and subject matter experts to manage successful and innovative operations. She received her MSW from the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Work and a BA in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science from Temple University. Katherine is married to Dr. Reginald Foy, has two children and lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Years of Service: 5

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Julia Reusch serves as a director of National Strategic Partnerships for Community Impact at Comcast NBCUniversal, helping to build relationships and programming with organizations across the country. She is also responsible for managing the relationships with Boys & Girls Clubs of America and City Year, working together to provide access and training so all kids and teens can harness the power of technology. Before joining the National Strategic Partnerships Team, Julia worked in Communications helping to tell the Comcast NBCUniversal community impact story. Prior to Comcast, Reusch worked in various community relations positions at Allstate, including managing the national strategy for agency local presence and serving as a corporate spokeswoman. Before making the switch to corporate communications in 2011, Reusch worked in television for 10 years — as a director for reality shows such as Animal Planet’s “Tanked,” a sports producer helping to launch SprinTV, and as a news reporter and producer, earning a Peabody for her role producing WSLSTV’s coverage of the Virginia Tech shootings in 2007. Julia was born and raised in the Philadelphia suburbs, where she currently lives with her husband, Jon, and twin boys, Henry and Charlie. She holds a B.A. of Political Science from The Ohio State University and is a member of the 2020 Institute of CSR Class at Johns Hopkins University.

Years of Service: 1

 

Iola Harper is a nationally-recognized, award-winning advocate for small businesses and urban neighborhoods. She has spent well over two decades working diligently with minority and women-owned firms and economic development agencies across the Delaware Valley, helping them gain access to needed financial, technical, and contract opportunity. The small business and economic development agencies that she has worked with are too numerous to name, but her work and efforts have benefited thousands of small business locally and regionally.  In 2016 she began work as the Deputy Director of Commerce for the city of Philadelphia. In this role she runs the Office of Economic Opportunity. This job involves ensuring that people of color, women and disabled-owned firms have equal access to city, quasi-city and some private sector contracts. Iola looks at this as an opportunity to open the door for businesses that she helped prepare to walk through.  Her success working with not only small businesses but in urban neighborhoods garnered the attention of former Governor of PA when she was named one of Pennsylvania’s top 50 Women in Business. Her work drew a national spotlight several years ago when she was honored by the Small Business Administration as one of the Nation’s top small business advocates and when she was named one of Philadelphia’s most influential women by the NAACP.

Years of Service: 2 

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Ana Lopez is a strategic marketing executive with extensive experience in the financial services industry delivering solutions to open new markets, generate and engage new customers and accelerate business growth. Most recently Vice President, Direct Channels with TD Bank Group, Ana played an instrumental role in driving the launch and adoption of new digital capabilities, such as Mobile Deposit, which has taken in over $1B in deposits since its 2013 launch. Previously, she was Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning with Wells Fargo from 2006-2011, where she developed consumer segment strategies, including the Bank’s first enterprise Hispanic strategy, which has been 7/29/20 leveraged throughout the organization to drive new retail growth. Prior to joining Wells Fargo, Ana was a Senior Vice President with Bank of America, where she managed the P&L of the Hispanic savings business (over $16B in deposits), and led the overall strategy and execution for high growth consumer markets, driving customized product and brand development, channel enhancements, and marketing programs, and launching a Spanish language web site. Ana holds BS and MBA degrees from Columbia University and MS and JD degrees from Georgetown University. She was admitted to the Bar in New York. In addition to her professional experience, Ana has served on the Board of Trustees of the Latino Community Foundation in San Francisco, and on the Board of Directors of the Women’s Institute for Housing and Economic Development in Boston. She was drawn to MCC’s mission due to her longstanding interest in working with organizations committed to improving the lives of women and children.

Years of Service: 5 

 

Randy Mintz-Presant is director of public affairs for the Gift of Life Donor Program, a world leader in promoting life-saving organ transplantation. As part of the senior management team, Randy oversees outreach and education initiatives. Her background includes holding senior leadership positions in top communications and health care organizations, and leading marketing communications programs for major companies such as AstraZeneca, Cigna, Dun & Bradstreet, and IBM. Randy started her career in journalism, writing for national publications such as Cosmopolitan, Family Circle and The Washington Post. She and her family are longtime residents of Philadelphia’s Bella Vista neighborhood, and she has served on numerous committees for area parks and schools, as well as organizations such as the Public Citizens for Children and Youth and the National MS Society. She holds a bachelor’s degree in communications from Syracuse University and a master’s degree in marketing communications from Temple University. Randy is in her second term on the Maternity Care Coalition Board; her tenure includes serving on the Strategic Planning, Celebrating Mothers Event, and Cooperate Advisory, Fund Development and Marketing committees.

Years of Service: 7

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Bonnie Wingate has been connecting executives with the power Insigniam provides to catalyze breakthrough results in their most critical and challenged initiatives. She has worked with executives of Fortune 500 companies in a variety of industries, including medical devices, pharmaceuticals, fast-moving consumer goods, food and beverage, and banking. Among Bonnie’s clients are a medical device company that accelerated their R&D timeline by 75% in four and a half months, an IT department that raised their ComputerWorld ranking from #170 to #17 in one year, and the R&D division of a consumer product company that created and commercialized what the industry called “the holy grail” product. The company’s products held the top three places in the market for years, and for six years they and their competitors had been working on the next-generation product. The company which solved “the holy grail” would own the category’s future. After just six months of working with Insigniam, R&D created the product that had evaded them and their competitors for years, retaining market dominance. Before joining Insigniam, Bonnie grew the start-up division of a local personnel service from the ground up. After seven years under her leadership, Day & Zimmermann purchased her company. She was an Executive Vice President before the purchase and retained that position during five years with D&Z; she was the first woman executive at D&Z. Bonnie is the President of the Greater Philadelphia Chapter of the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association. She formerly held the position of Vice President and President-Elect, and has been a member of the HBA Board since 2012. She holds a B.A. in Journalism from Indiana University.

Years of Service: 2

 

Desarae Woodall Smalls  is currently President of the Early Head Start Policy council. She serves also as an Oral Ambassador for Head Start, and represents MCC’s EHS program in regards to home visiting and center based care. Desarae has been a leader among EHS parents and was previously a client of MCC’s services. In January 2018, she participated in the federal review of the EHS program which required extensive knowledge of the program’s model and performance standards. Desarae has a deep understanding of the needs of the organization’s client base and the fiscal challenges the local community faces daily. Additionally, she attended Head Start’s national training on parent engagement. Desarae resides in Norristown, PA with her husband and three children.

Years of Service: 2

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Mary Pat Sherry is Director of Market Development for the AmeriHealth Caritas Family of Companies. In this role she is responsible for new business opportunities and the development of key stakeholder relationships nationally. In her previous role as Director of Corporate Public Relations she led the implementation of grassroots and associate advocacy campaigns and supported the corporate marketing strategy through community development initiatives. She joined AmeriHealth Caritas in October, 2007. Her career began as a health educator for the American Cancer Society where she was responsible for the development and facilitation of cancer awareness and prevention programs for schools, hospitals and community groups. Mary Pat serves on Maternity Care Coalition’s Early Head Start Board Committee (EHSBC). She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health from West Chester University.

“I was drawn to Maternity Care Coalition because of a shared mission to improve access to quality prenatal and post-natal care for women and children. I am impressed by MCC’s community based services that focus on strengthening families.”

Years of Service: 7

 

Giuliano Pignataro is a real estate developer committed to architectural preservation, classic design, and uncompromising environmental sustainability. Born and raised in Philadelphia, his range of experience includes several years as project manager for one of the nation’s largest home builders in both suburban and urban markets; director of construction and development for a portfolio of over two thousand luxury rental residential units; and as managing director of a green building project in Jamaica, West Indies.

Years of Service: 3

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Radhika Kakarla, MD FACOG is the CEO, Medical Director, and Founder of HATCH. She is a boardcertified Obstetrician-Gynecologist with 20 years of experience. Dr. Kakarla is a highly-skilled and well-respected physician in the community currently practicing with Main Line OB-GYN and also holds affiliations at several nearby hospitals. She graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s degree from Louisiana State University, followed by her medical degree at LSU School of Medicine, as part of a six-year accelerated program. Dr. Kakarla was a member of the prestigious Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society and recipient of the Senior OB-GYN Award, as well as the Residency Teaching Award, from Parkland Hospital of UT Southwestern. She is a member of several prominent medical organizations including the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, American Medical Association, and Texas Medical Association. Dr. Kakarla stays busy enjoying life to the maximum with a passion for empowering and bringing women together thus allowing them to grow to their full potential. She loves yoga and fitness, traveling the world to expand her spirituality, and spending time with family and friends. She currently resides in Villanova with her husband and two children. Dr. Kakarla has recently received her yoga teaching certification in 2020.

Years of Service: 2  

 

Nora Cruz, is a Private Wealth Advisor at Goldman Sachs in the Consumer & Wealth Management Division, where she advises wealthy individuals, family offices and select non-profit organizations. Nora earned her MBA and Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School, where she was twice recognized in the top 20% of her class and awarded the MBA Leadership Award for her graduating class. Prior to graduate school, Nora worked for the NBA Washington Wizards in the marketing department and coached college women’s basketball at several east coast institutions, including the United States Military Academy, Emory University, and Appalachian State University.

Years of Service: 1

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Nakia Stith, at the age of 22 assumed a leadership role at Top of the Clock Inc., a West Philadelphia-based security and protection services firm started by her father in 1991. Nakia immediately led the company through a sweeping turnaround taking the company from near bankruptcy to profitability with consistent annual growth. Ever focused on pioneering new paradigms, in 2011 Nakia launched ResilienC – an innovative and socially conscious firm that addresses the security, safety, and public health of urban communities holistically. She has pioneered a new approach to safe environments that makes it easier to establish trust and cooperation in facilities, schools, and communities. Her goal is to create a higher level of consciousness around security, safety, and public health issues – one that challenges and influences policies and procedures to improve lives. Nakia is an avid supporter of traditional prenatal healthcare and education; she empowers women and families to take control of their pre-natal and childbirth experiences by serving as a doula and childbirth educator.

Years of Service: 8

 

Omar Woodard chairs MCC’s Public Policy Committee. He is also a Head Start alumnus. He is a philanthropic adviser with a decade of experience working across the government, business, and nonprofit sectors. Previously, he was policy director to State Senator Anthony Williams, where he developed his citywide healthcare strategy. Before that, he was principal at Venture Philanthropy Partners, a philanthropic investment firm with investments in federally qualified health centers. Earlier in his career, he advocated on behalf of healthcare legislation in the U.S. Congress, and represented healthcare and pharmaceutical clients as a federal lobbyist and as a management consultant. Omar serves on several local and national boards, including the African American Chamber of Commerce of PA, the Girard College Foundation, and the Hispanic Heritage Foundation. Omar received a bachelor of arts in international economics and public policy and a master’s degree in nonprofit management from The George Washington University. He also completed executive education at Harvard Business School in nonprofit governance. Omar resides in the Germantown section of Philadelphia.

Years of Service: 6

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Susan Robbins, is a pediatrician with training in public health and preventive medicine. Prior to aiding some programs for the Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, she served as the Medical Director of Pediatric and Adolescent Services for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University, and the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health. She completed residency training at Thomas Jefferson University and Johns Hopkins University. She is involved with the American Public Health Association/ Maternal and Child Health Section, Physicians for Social Responsibility – Philadelphia,PA, and the Philadelphia County Medical Society among other organizations. She highly values the mission of Maternity Care Coalition, and has been participating in the Early Head Start Board Committee and the Health Services Advisory Committee for a number of years before joining the Board of Directors.

Years of Service: 3