Jason joins RAFT from Revolution Robotics Foundation, a STEM focused foundation that creates robotic kits, challenges, and competitions for kids, where he served as Executive Director. Prior to leading Revolution Robotics, Jason was the President for the Robotics Education & Competition Foundation where he spearheaded their overall growth from $1M to almost $10M in seven years by expanding STEAM programs and participation to over 18,000 teams in 40 countries. Jason is a former award-winning high school teacher in San Jose. He has successfully planned, developed, and launched global education and workforce development programs, including initiatives to promote the inclusion and advancement of girls and under-represented groups in STEAM disciplines and fields.
Dave joined RAFT in 2015 as Director of Finance after 20 years in the high tech industry. Dave brings strategic financial planning and analysis leadership having supported a variety of business organizations including corporate finance, product design, sales, marketing and manufacturing for technology companies.
Chase has worked in education for over 20 years serving as a teacher, administrator, curriculum content writer, program evaluator, charter school advocate, and consultant. Chase started his education career as a classroom teacher and has taught at the middle and high school levels. After a brief stint in the private sector, he ran a charter school, then joined the California Charter Schools Association, where he served as Director of School Quality, Vice President of School Development and Support, and Vice President of Research and Evaluation. He also currently serves as a Commissioner for the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
Before joining RAFT, Chase served as the Managing Director for The Alvo Institute, one of the first technology-agnostic consulting firms dedicated to personalized learning, and as the Director of Personalized Learning for New Leaders. In these positions, Chase helped traditional, charter, and private schools and districts across the country to design, pilot, implement, and evaluate blended and personalized learning programs.
Chase earned his BA in History from Pomona College in Claremont, CA, and his Master’s in Curriculum and Teacher Education from Stanford University.
As of January 2020, Nivisha Mehta has joined RAFT as the Chief Development Officer. Nivisha brings 18 years of experience in major gift fundraising, grant writing, special event planning and sponsorship, marketing, and program strategy and development for nonprofit organizations. In that time, she has raised over $8 million and developed expertise in fundraising across diverse ethnic communities in the Bay Area. Nivisha has been a senior philanthropy/major gifts officer for many large Bay Area nonprofit organizations such as the American Red Cross, Alum Rock Counseling Center, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, IIT Madras Foundation, El Camino Hospital Foundation for their South Asian Heart Center, and most recently Hope Services.
Naa Anim-Appiah joins RAFT after serving as Sr. Director of Finance at CityTeam Ministries in San Jose for almost seven years. She obtained an MBA in Finance from Emory University in Atlanta, and she has over twenty years experience in Finance and Accounting, having worked in both non-profit and large for-profit organizations. Naa brings extensive financial leadership experience in strategic planning and analysis as well as accounting controllership.
Webb McKinney is a management consultant with a primary focus on merger integration and leadership development. Mr. McKinney also serves on the boards of two non-profit organizations: Resource Area for Teaching (RAFT) and The Silicon Valley Education Foundation (SVEF).
Prior to retiring from HP after 34 years of service in Nov 2003, McKinney was the EVP leading HP’s ongoing merger integration and global citizenship efforts, as well as HP’s organizational effectiveness and governance initiatives.
Previously, McKinney co-led HP’s post-merger integration team for the merger of HP and Compaq. His responsibilities included planning and leading the integration of HP and Compaq’s systems, processes, and people.
McKinney was born in Ontario, California. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Southern California. He is the co-author of Becoming Hewlett Packard: Why Strategic Leadership Matters. He is married to Christina McKinney. They have two daughters: Megan Giannini and Sarah Gibson, and four grandchildren: Ryann & Luca Giannini and Charlie & Oliver Gibson.
Nigel Ball has been involved with RAFT for many years in various roles. He has served as Head of Marketing, Board Chair, and interim CEO. Additionally, he has a long history in the Silicon Valley corporate world and has held executive positions at Hewlett Packard and Oracle.
Brenda Peffer is a senior marketing executive with over 25 years of experience at some of the biggest brand name companies in high technology. She is currently an independent management consultant specializing in marketing strategy and serves on the board of RAFT as Secretary. Peffer held executive and senior marketing management positions at Hitachi Data Systems, HP, and Apple. As Vice President of Marketing at Hitachi Data Systems, she led a worldwide marketing team that drove double-digit annual growth. Peffer came to Hitachi Data Systems from HP where she served in a series of Channel Management and Director of Marketing roles with responsibility for driving revenue growth for many of HP’s enterprise software, hardware, and services businesses. Prior to joining HP, she developed her marketing skills at brand leader Apple Computer. While at Apple, among many marketing management positions, Peffer led the companies Product Introduction team that oversaw the processes associated with bringing all-new Apple products to market.
Ms. Peffer earned a BS in Marketing from San Diego State University and an MBA from San Jose State University.
Kathy is passionate about mission-driven organizations that foster positive social impact. She has served as CEO or COO for companies in publishing, online media, and education software, including the San Jose Mercury News, Marketwatch.com, and Teachscape. She also has more than 20 years experience serving as a Director on the boards of numerous non-profit organizations doing work in education (Bellarmine College Prep, KTEH Channel 54), health care (Good Samaritan Health System, ReSurge International), and civic development (American Leadership Forum).
Brooks is the Vice President & Deputy General Counsel – Litigation, Employment, Cybersecurity, and Regulatory Compliance at VMware, where he oversees a global team of legal professions covering subject matter areas such as litigation, government inquiries and investigations, employment law issues, cybersecurity, regulatory compliance, and VMware’s Dawn Raid Program. He is also a member of VMware’s Cybersecurity Response Team, Emergency Response Team, and Crisis Management Team. Mr. Beard previously served for a year as the interim lead of VMware’s global Ethics & Compliance Team and, during the same period, lead the Privacy Team.
Brooks joined VMware in 2014 after spending 18 years in private practice, including 17 years at Morrison & Foerster in its San Francisco office, where he became a partner in January 2005. While at Morrison & Foerster, Mr. Beard had a broad-based litigation practice representing clients in state and federal court, as well as before state and federal administrative agencies, focusing on intellectual property (patent, trademark, and trade secrets), false advertising, environmental, breach of contract, trade secret, white-collar criminal, and civil rights matters, among other types of matters. In addition to being admitted to practice in several Federal District Courts, Mr. Beard is admitted to practice before the Eighth, Ninth, Eleventh, and Federal Circuit U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals and the Supreme Court of the United States.
In October 2007, then-San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom appointed Mr. Beard to serve as a Commissioner on the San Francisco Rent Stabilization and Arbitration Board—a position he held until 2013. And from 2009 until 2014, Mr. Beard sat on the Eco-Entrepreneurship Advisory Council and the Council of Legal Advisors at the Donald Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, University of California, Santa Barbara.
Mr. Beard received his B.A. from the University of California, Santa Barbara, his J.D., cum laude, from Vermont Law School, and his LL.M., with distinction, from the Georgetown University Law Center.
In her role as Sr. Director, external reporting & technical accounting at Adobe, Jillian is responsible for the accounting and administration for Global Equity and Payroll Operations and related activities under both US GAAP and IFRS and providing technical accounting guidance to Adobe’s business units and other functional areas. She is also responsible for purchase accounting, equity conversion, and equity valuation related to mergers and acquisitions and overseeing the preparation, review, and filing of Adobe’s SEC reporting on Forms 10-Q and 10-K. She has led Adobe’s implementation efforts related to the adoption of various new accounting standards, including the recent updates to ASC 718 Stock Compensation and ASC 842, Leasing.
Jillian is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a Certified Equity Professional (CEP). Prior to joining Adobe, Jillian was part of the Audit and Assurance group at Deloitte. She has also held various finance and accounting related positions with the Ritz Carlton, LLC and the Walt Disney Corporation.
In her spare time, Jillian enjoys spending time with her husband and 3 kids, gourmet cooking, wine tasting, travel, swimming, and running.
Kevin is a Principal with Deloitte & Touche’s Risk & Financial Advisory practice and is a national leader in the Extended Enterprise Risk Management (EERM) practice. Kevin joined Deloitte more than twenty-five years ago and has delivered a broad range of services, including risk management, third party compliance, contract compliance, software asset management, software quality assurance, and internal and external audit services during his career. Kevin has participated in the development and operation of numerous extended enterprise compliance programs focused on hardware, software, and intellectual property management in the technology, telecom, pharmaceutical, and consumer business industries. Kevin is also an advisory partner for several global clients in the technology industry where we are delivering a wide range of consulting and compliance services.
Kevin received BS degrees in both Accounting and Computer Information Systems from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona.
Certifications – CISA (Certified Information Systems Auditor) and CGEIT (Certified in the Governance of Enterprise IT)
Peter Geschke is in his 30th year educating students in the Fremont Unified School District, where he currently teaches Advanced Placement Physics at Mission San Jose High School. Peter is an active member of the Northern California-Nevada Section of the American Association of Physics Teachers as well as the Exploratorium Teacher Institute. Peter earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences from the University of California at Davis and his teaching credential from California State University – Sacramento.
Sharon Hutchins is a global strategic IT and business operations leader who delivers substantial experience designing, leading a broad range of improvement and realignment initiatives through more than 20 years of leadership at Intuit, Inc. (Nasdaq: INTU). She has proven success with corporate and public sector organizational turnarounds, leading IT M&A integrations and driving global expansion. Sharon understands all aspects of business operations and is known for her ability to translate vision into operational action plans, build leaders at all levels and help companies understand their customer base. She is uniquely qualified to advise and assist companies in understanding and growing their customer base, advising on M&A initiatives, improving operations and exploring digital transformation to gain efficiency and effectiveness.
Sharon works closely with Intuit’s corporate development team to analyze and make decisions on company-wide acquisitions. In her roles as IT Business Operations, M&A Integration, Global Expansion and Special Events, she devised a global IT M&A Playbook to provide a structured approach to define IT’s role in all M&A phases and deliver flawless Day 1 integration. Sharon has proven success helping Intuit enter new markets, establishing partnerships with the right global suppliers and understanding foreign government affairs and cultural sensitivities. In a push to drive global expansion, her global IT procurement and fulfillment strategy shortened the purchasing time of IT hardware and support for international regions by 50%. As an expert in governance and compliance, she led the implementation of a GRC solution to streamline and oversee the SOX and PCI compliance programs.
Sharon earned her Bachelor of Science from Haas School of Business at University of California, Berkeley, and studied upper-level coursework in Educational Leadership at California State University, Sacramento. She holds Six Sigma Master Black Belt Certification (GE approach) and was a featured speaker at the Haas Women in Leadership Conference at U.C. Berkeley in March 2018. Prior Board experience: School Board Trustee, Travis Unified School District, 1985 - 1996 (4 years Chairman of the Board).
Cecil is a Partner in KPMG’s Silicon Valley office with over 21 years of experience providing audit and accounting services to public and venture-backed private companies primarily in the Software and SaaS industry. He is designated as one of KPMG’s SEC Reviewing Partners and National Revenue Recognition Network members. Cecil was previously a Partner in KPMG’s National Office where he consulted on complex technical accounting, auditing and financial reporting matters. Cecil also served two years as a Professional Accounting Fellow in the Office of the Chief Accountant at the Securities and Exchange Commission, where he consulted on audit and financial reporting matters, studied and developed rule proposals under federal securities laws, and conducted various activities with respect to the SEC’s oversight of the PCAOB and FASB. Cecil began his career with KPMG’s Vancouver, Canada office.
Edith Mourtos was named Superintendent of Luther Burbank School District effective July 1, 2020. She brings more than 35 years of experience in education, serving as teacher, principal, reading language arts coordinator, director, and Chief Academic Officer.
She oversaw the Professional Learning and Instructional Support Division which provides leadership and support to school districts through professional development, implementation of curriculum and instructional practices as well as the SCCOE EPIC and LEAP educator certification programs. Her leadership and the work of her team is a critical piece of supporting schools in their efforts to raise student achievement through the best practices in teaching and learning.
Ms. Mourtos also served as Principal of Cumberland School in the Sunnyvale School District. Under her direction, Cumberland received the 2016 Glenn W. Hoffmann Exemplary Program Award, the 2016 California Gold Ribbon Schools Award, and the 2017 Sunnyvale Community Award for Outstanding Environmental Achievement and the California Distinguished School Award in 2018.
Ms. Mourtos has also provided professional development and teacher education courses for the Alameda County Office of Education/University of California Office of the President and San Jose State University. Prior to her move into administration, Edith served as a classroom teacher for 16 years in the Greater Bay Area. She holds a Master of Arts in Staff Development from Mills College and a Bachelor of Arts Liberal Studies from San Jose State University.
Sridhar Narasimhan is a management consultant, providing strategy and ‘hands on’ interim executive leadership services to public & private (venture-backed) enterprises.
Prior to this, Sri was Vice President & General Manager of Customer Experience for Hewlett Packard (HP). In this role, he was responsible for creating an exceptional, pan-HP experience across the entire customer journey.
Sridhar has more than 25 years of international leadership experience in sales, marketing and operations; across hardware, software, and services at companies such as HP, Avaya, Symantec, and Adobe. Sridhar holds a Bachelor’s Degree with honors in Marketing from the University of Huddersfield in the UK.
Karen D. Rohde is a retired Human Resources Executive. She was most recently the Chief Human Resources Officer for Marvell Technologies. She has also held the top Human Resources role at Amyris, Inc. (biotech) and Hitachi Global Storage Technologies. Prior to those roles, she was the Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Chief Talent Officer for Sun Microsystems. Karen has an M.B.A. from U.C. Berkeley’s Haas School of Business and spent the first decade of her career in Finance. Karen is passionate about unlocking the potential of people, teams and organizations, creating order out of chaos, and making connections. She also believes in volunteering in her local community. Karen has served on the Boards of Directors of The Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose and The Girls’ Middle School.