Who We Are
MEF is run by a Board of Directors that is comprised of dedicated parent and community volunteers with professional experience in a variety of areas, including fundraising, finance, business, education, and marketing.
MEF Board Members are strong supporters of all schools in the Martinez Unified School District (MUSD), and understand that a public education is free, but a great education is not. The MEF Grant Program was established to fund requests from educators for the benefit of our MUSD students. MEF Board Members are proud to subsidize the huge gap in state funding necessary to guarantee our students quality programs and services.
Rochelle is a long time Martinez resident and her two young adult children are alums of Morello Park, Martinez Junior High School (MJHS), and Alhambra High School. She worked for over 25 years in Brokerage Operations and Institutional investments and was Managing Director of Investment Operations with global responsibilities until she retired to begin an “encore career” as the owner of her own personal training business. Rochelle became an MEF Board Member in 2015 and has volunteered on the Outreach, Grant, and Marketing/Public Relations Committees. She has also served as both the MEF Vice President and President. Rochelle believes in supporting grants for alternative classroom furniture and funding such items as Hokki Stools, a creative seat for those having a challenging time sitting still, as they enable students to focus and achieve their full potential. Rochelle is also proud that MEF has funded grant requests for the MJHS Robotics Program and is excited that it teaches students about technology, coding, and process development.
Cheryl graduated from the University of the Pacific and has been a Martinez resident for 28 years. After a career in management and personnel, she found her calling as a volunteer, serving on the boards of Buena Vista Auxiliary of Assistance League of Diablo Valley, Pleasant Hill Aquatics, and the Morello Park and Martinez Junior High School PTAs. Cheryl is also a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) and a CASA Team Leader. She is passionate about enhancing the educational experiences of our Martinez students and became a MEF Board member in 2009. Cheryl has served the Foundation as Recording Secretary, Vice President and President. She has been involved with the Martinez Unified School District as a Para Educator, and a committee member of the Local Control Accountability Plan, Curriculum Advisory Council, Alhambra High School WASC, three different school Site Councils, and AHS Grad Night. Cheryl is honored to be a member of MEF, a non-profit, all volunteer organization, that, since 1986, has funded educator grant requests totaling over $3.3 million – all for the benefit of our Martinez Unified School District students.
Bobbi is a 43-year Martinez resident with a degree in Speech Pathology and Audiology from Southeast Missouri State University and a Master’s in Education Leadership from Cal State East Bay. Bobbi taught for 22 years in the Martinez Unified School District (MUSD) and then went into administration for Benicia schools. She first became active with MEF in 2015 as the MUSD School Board Liaison, and after leaving the school board, continued volunteering with the education foundation because she valued its dedication to making our schools better. It gives Bobbi great pleasure to see the teachers in MUSD receive financial help to make their classrooms a special learning environment for their students. Bobbi believes that providing funds for technology, books, furniture, and experiences, all help MEF create dream classrooms.
Diane is a long-time member of the Martinez community and joined the MEF Board in 2009. She has a degree in Chemical Engineering and after working at various engineering firms, now dedicates her time to a variety of volunteer positions. Diane has held multiple positions with our local PTA’s and is involved with the Diablo Regional Concert Band, the Society of Women Engineers, and the John Muir National Historic Site. She serves on a number of Ed Foundation committees and is presently our MEF Treasurer. Diane is delighted that MEF supports a variety of educational materials and proud that, since 1986, we have funded grant requests for books totaling over $238,000.
Mike graduated with a Chemical Engineering degree from University of Nevada-Reno and worked for the Shell Martinez Refinery for over 30 years. He is now employed by the Martinez Refining Company and is a former Martinez Citizen of the Year. Mike has served on a variety of committees for the Martinez Unified School District and volunteers with Main Street Martinez. He serves on the MEF Finance Committee and the Run for Education Committee. Mike believes that supporting grant requests for robotics inspire a student’s curiosity, creativity, and invention through connected play and coding.
CJ has been a part of the Martinez community for 14 years as a member of the Martinez Unified School District. During that time, he held positions ranging from Assistant Principal of Martinez Junior High School to his present post as the Superintendent of Schools. CJ is married to his college sweetheart and they are parents of two children. He is currently a second year Chairman of the Board for the Martinez Chamber of Commerce and for over four years has volunteered with the Martinez Rotary Club. CJ has been a part of the MEF Board since 2016 and is passionate about the Foundation’s Grant Program because he sees firsthand how Martinez students and schools are able to have increased teaching and learning experiences thanks to the funding awards from MEF.
Jenn is a graduate of Tufts University and has an MBA from the Goizueta Business School at Emory University. Jenn is a Marketing & Customer Engagement leader with over 15 years of experience helping companies leverage data and technology to drive demand and deliver great customer experiences. A believer in philanthropy, she has served on the board of Planned Parenthood Northern California and became an MEF Board Member in 2005. Jenn has served on a variety of foundation committees, including Marketing/Public Relations, Website, Community Outreach, and the Run for Education Family Fun Night. She is passionate about raising the visibility of MEF in our community and continues to be impressed with the support our community gives to education. The more people understand how MEF supports our schools, the more we can do to directly impact our student’s education and future, as well as the future of Martinez.
John is a 20-year resident of Martinez and his two children have attended local schools since their kindergarten days. John is an attorney practicing in medical malpractice defense. He is an active volunteer, serving on his high school alumni board, his church council, and on committees for professional attorney groups. John joined the MEF Board in 2015 and believes the MEF grants supporting classroom technology, the dramatic arts, and music are extremely beneficial to our schools and it’s these programs where we most easily see student progress.
Jack retired from the Contra Costa County Public Defender’s Office after 30 years working as a trial lawyer and managing attorney. He has lived in Martinez since 1982 and is an active member of the Executive Board of the Retiree Support Group of Contra Costa County, working to protect the benefits of retired public servants. Jack joined the MEF Board in 2011 and has been the Race Director for the Annual MEF Run for Education since 2012, though his wife and daughter have been participating in the Run for years before that. Jack comes to MEF believing that spending our community resources on helping today’s young people succeed will save all of us from having to spend much more in the future were they to fail.
Dylan is a life-long Martinez resident who attended Martinez Unified School District (MUSD) schools, graduating from Alhambra High School in 1989. Dylan is employed by Contra Costa County as a Deputy County Counsel and serves on the City of Martinez’s Park, Recreation, Marina and Cultural Commission. He has been a member of the Martinez Education Foundation for over 15 years, serving on finance and fundraising committees. As a parent of school aged children (13 and 8), he has seen how the MEF Grant Program benefits all students by providing much needed resources directly to the classrooms. He looks forward to growing MEF’s donor base so that MEF can continue to support MUSD and all the students throughout the district.
Larry was born and raised in Martinez. After graduating from the University of Arizona, he returned to this community and since 1979 has worked for Lippow Development Co. Larry has a long history of volunteering, working with the Contra Costa County Taxpayers Association, the Child Family Therapy Center, Main Street Martinez, the California Chamber of Commerce, the Capital Region Family Business Center, and the UOP Institute for Family Business. Larry has been a staunch supporter of Martinez schools, serving on the John Swett Elementary Site Council and joining the MEF Board in 1990. Over the years, Larry has been the MEF President, Vice-President, Treasurer, and is currently our Busi-kids Chairman. He strongly believes that Martinez schools are one of the most important assets in the community and it is a priority to support them. Larry has served on the foundation board for over 30 years because it is a great organization that is focused 100% on supporting the Martinez schools.
Anne grew up in Martinez and is a proud alum of John Swett Elementary, the Martinez Junior High School (MJHS), and Alhambra High School. Anne taught English and Yearbook at MJHS from 2012-2019. Anne served on the board of Creative Play Center and joined the MEF Board in 2019. As a parent of a Las Juntas student, Anne is especially proud of the work MEF does to get students and teachers the resources they need to make Martinez schools awesome.
Martha has been a Martinez resident for 34 years and for 21 years was employed by the Martinez Unified School District as an Alhambra High School Technology Specialist. Martha has volunteered with the PTA, Alhambra High School Athletic Boosters, and joined the MEF Board in 2017. As the MEF Grants Chairperson, Martha is especially proud that since 1986, MEF has contributed over $1.3 million in support of Martinez Unified School District technology grants.
Deidre has been a member of the Martinez community for over 20 years. Deidre is a mom, attorney, and a Martinez Unified School District (MUSD) School Board Trustee. She has worked with the Boys & Girls Club of Contra Costa County, Volunteers of America, and joined the MEF Board in 2019. Deidre is thrilled that the MEF Grant Program directly provides funds for educational resources and materials that help MUSD students be academically competitive in their pursuit of careers and college.
Shannon graduated from St. Mary’s College and has been employed for more than 30 years as an administrative assistant and office manager. Shannon has been a board member for the Martinez Pee Wee Baseball and Martinez Little League and joined our MEF board in 2016. She is an enthusiastic volunteer and after the 2017 Sonoma fires, helped at the Bodega Bay Shelter and Information Center. Additionally, Shannon has raised funds for local food banks, underprivileged Oakland schools, and the Martinez Education Foundation. Shannon is proud that the MEF Grant Program supports the Martinez Unified School District and improves the classroom experience for all our Martinez students.
Leslie is a 22-year Martinez resident with two (now young adult) children who matriculated through the Martinez Unified School District and now enjoy very successful careers because of it. Prior to joining MEF, Leslie served on the PTA of Morello Park Elementary for six years in various capacities, including chairing their biggest annual fundraising event. She was the Director of the “Parent Educator Program (PEP)” at Morello Park for five years, leading a team of volunteer parents in teaching resiliency skills once per week to students in grades 3-5. And it was through her time volunteering on the Alhambra High School “Grad Night” committee (serving as Chair for two years) that she gained an appreciation for the lasting power a unique and robust educational experience can have on both students and teachers. An experience that can be made richer with the support of volunteer hours and MEF grants. Countless MUSD graduates over the years come back to Martinez and share their gratitude and special memories around the incredible support and life preparation provided by our programs, teachers and volunteers. Leslie graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a Business Administration degree, and received an MBA in Organizational Development from Golden Gate University. She is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources, and is currently the Onboarding and Transitions Leader for Ernst & Young LLP’s West Region. Leslie is excited to bring her experience and passion around diversity, inclusiveness and communications to MEF as it continues to support the long tradition of learning excellence in Martinez.