Board of Directors

The Board of Directors is composed of members of the SF State community and the greater San Francisco Bay Area community who are passionately committed to the continuing good health of public higher education and San Francisco State University in particular.

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Board Officers

Robert J. Nava

Robert J. Nava

President
Vice President, University Advancement, SF State

Robert Nava is vice president for university advancement at SF State and is president of the San Francisco State University Foundation. Prior to coming to SF State, Nava held various senior leadership positions at the University of California, Riverside and served as the university's lobbyist in Sacramento and Washington D.C. During much of his 19-year UC Riverside career, Nava also taught as an adjunct faculty member in CSU Fullerton's Chicano Studies program and worked in advocacy for the Orange County Human Relations Commission. Nava served as the associate vice president for institutional advancement at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) from 2005 to 2010, during which time he organized the university's centennial campaign, which raised almost half of its $200 million goal in a down economy before its public launch in September 2010. Nava earned a B.S. in Criminal Justice from UTEP in 1979 and a J.D. from Western State University College of Law in Orange County, Calif. Nava is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CRFE) and was a member of the Harvard Graduate School of Education's Institute for Management and Leadership in Education (MLE), class of 2001. He also was an education fellow with the Institute on Educational Leadership, Washington, D.C. Nava is married to Catherine Aguilera-Nava. The couple have three children and one grandchild.

 

David Serrano Sewell

David Serrano Sewell

('99) Chair
Regional Vice President for San Francisco with the Hospital Council for Northern & Central California
David Serrano Sewell, an attorney, commissioner and advocate, has experience interacting with diverse stakeholders to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.

Starting in 1995 as an aide to Mayor Willie L. Brown, Jr., he represented the office on land use, real estate and permitting matters, often in a challenging environment. As a deputy city attorney for eleven years, he advised the San Francisco International Airport on complex issues ranging from public contracting to compliance with the City Charter.

Now, as the regional vice president for San Francisco with the Hospital Council for Northern & Central California, his passion drives him in support of institutions and people that improve the quality of life of others in the health sector.

From 2004 to 2012, Serrano Sewell was an appointee to the governing board to the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, the state's $3 billion effort to fund stem cell research and facilities. In that role, he worked to fund innovative projects that enhanced California's standing as a global leader in stem cell research.

He is now Governor Jerry Brown's appointee to the Medical Board of California, a consumer protection agency.

He is a proud Gator, who received a B.A. in urban studies in 1999 from SF State, where he served as student body president in 1993. He received a J.D. from Golden Gate University in 2002. He is a 25-year resident of San Francisco, who lives with his spouse, Sarah, and daughter in the Mission District.

 

John Gumas

John Gumas

(’84) Immediate Past Chair
President, Gumas Advertising

John Gumas is the President of Gumas Advertising, a San Francisco-based full-service branding, advertising and interactive marketing agency. A veteran of the advertising and marketing industry, Gumas founded Gumas Advertising in 1984. Today, the award-winning firm serves a host of regional, national and international clients. Gumas currently sits on many boards, including the San Francisco Giants Community Fund, the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce and the Elios Society. He is also the author of the popular book "Marketing Smart." Mr. Gumas received a B.A. in marketing in 1984 from SF State, where he was named 2008 Alumni Advocate of the Year and inducted into SF State's Alumni Hall of Fame in 2010. His wife, Janice, graduated from SF State in 1985, also with a bachelor's degree in business. Janice Gumas is serving as founding president of the newly established SF State Parents Council. Their son studies opera at SF State.

 

Taylor Safford

Taylor Safford

('84, '95) Vice Chair
CEO and President, PIER 39 Limited Partnership
Taylor Safford is the president and chief executive officer of PIER 39. He is responsible for operating all the PIER 39 Companies' divisions and affiliated entities, including Blue & Gold Fleet, Pier Restaurants L.P., California Partnership Marketing Group (CPMG), Strategic Alliances and Bay Marina Management, Inc., as well as the world- famous PIER 39 shopping, dining and entertainment complex.

Safford began his career with PIER 39 in 1979. After rising to controller of the company’s restaurant division in 1985, he was transferred and promoted in 1996 to executive vice president of Finance and Administration for Blue & Gold Fleet, L.P. In 2006, Safford was appointed president of Blue & Gold Fleet, which operates 20 vessels and provides bay cruise excursions and commuter ferry services throughout the San Francisco Bay. Blue & Gold Fleet carries three million passengers annually and is the largest private water transportation operator on the West Coast.

Safford earned his BA and MBA from San Francisco State University. He is currently active on the Board of the United States Travel Association. He has been a trustee on the executive committee of the Inlandboatmen's Union Health and Pension Trusts. He is a past member of Financial Executives International and the Institute of Management Accountants

Born in Connecticut, Safford enjoys golf and racquetball. He resides in Mill Valley with his wife, Kathleen.

 

Venesia Thompson-Ramsay

Venesia Thompson-Ramsay

Treasurer/Secretary
Chief of Operations, University Advancement, SF State

Venesia Thompson is chief of operations for university advancement at SF State and secretary and treasurer for the San Francisco State University Foundation. Thompson has over 15 years’ experience working in nonprofit and higher education settings. Prior to coming to SF State, Thompson served as senior director, finance and administration at Urban Habitat, a policy, advocacy, research nonprofit in Oakland, CA. Prior to joining Urban Habitat, she worked as the assistant director of the Center for Urban Redevelopment and Education (CURE), an applied research and community outreach center based at Florida Atlantic University. Thompson serves on the board of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), East Bay Chapter. Thompson earned a B.A. in Language and Linguistics from the University of the West Indies, Mona and a M.A in Political Science from Florida Atlantic University.

 

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Board Directors

 

Vincent R. Anicetti

Vincent R. Anicetti

('77, '87) Senior Vice President, Global QualityCoherus Biosciences
Vince R. Anicetti is the Senior Vice President, Global Quality at Coherus Biosciences, the leading biologics platform company solely focused on delivering high-quality biosimilar therapeutics in regulated markets worldwide. Most recently he was the Executive Director of Quality for Boehringer-Ingelheim's California facility, responsible for Quality and on-site Regulatory Chemistry, Manufacturing, and Control. 

He was one of the first 100 employees hired at Genentech when he joined the company in the early 1980s. Anicetti retired from Genentech after 30 years where he held leadership positions in Quality, Regulatory Affairs and Project Portfolio Management, including vice president of Biologics Quality (2006-11), vice president of Portfolio Management (2003-6) and senior director of Regulatory Affairs (2003-6).

Anicetti is a sought-after speaker and has chaired several bio-technology conferences. He has co-authored a number of articles for scientific journals and, while at Genentech, was part a team that received a patent for inventing a method of purifying recombinant proteins from corresponding host cell proteins. Since 2011, he has been an adjunct professor of the Keck Graduate Institute teaching classes in Biopharmaceutical Quality and CMC Regulatory Affairs. He also served as past Chair of the Parenteral Drug Association (PDA) and as a PDA Fellow of Science and Regulatory Affairs from 2011-2013.
 
Anicetti received his B.A. in Biology in 1977 and his M.S. degree in Clinical/Biomedical Science in 1987, both from SF State.

 

Kimberly Brandon

Kimberly Brandon

('84) Senior Vice President and Wealth Advisor, Morgan Stanley
Kimberly K. Brandon has mapped a flourishing career in the field of financial services. Currently she serves as Senior Vice President with The Brandon Group at Morgan Stanley, where she oversees a portfolio of assets of high net worth individuals, foundations, endowments and public entities. Ms. Brandon joined the firm in 2004 from the Private Bank at Bank of America in San Francisco as a Private Client Manager.  While at Bank of America, Brandon provided strategic investment management advice to ultra high net-worth individuals, foundations and endowments. Previously, Brandon spent 13 years with Wells Fargo Bank working with high net-worth individuals.

A native San Franciscan, Brandon is a graduate of San Francisco State University, where she serves as a member of the executive committee and chairs the investment committee of the SF State Foundation Board of Directors. She is also a member of the University’s School of Business Development Council. She has completed Cannon Financial Institute’s Certified Wealth Strategist Mastery Program and holds the National Association of Securities Dealers Series 7, 63 and 66 licenses.

Brandon is very active in the San Francisco community with involvement in civic and political causes. She is the first African-American woman to serve on the San Francisco Port Commission, which overseas 7.5 miles of the most expensive real estate in the world, which includes maritime, commercial and retail developments. Amongst its tenants are AT&T Park, the Ferry Building, Pier 39 and Fisherman’s Wharf.  Kimberly was appointed by Mayor Willie L. Brown, Jr. in August 1997.  

She also spends numerous hours serving the community on various nonprofit boards and is immediate past chair of the Board of Trustees of the Museum of African Diaspora and an active board member of PACT, Inc, Metta Fund, The San Francisco Foundation’s Koshland Committee and a member of the San Francisco Chapter of The Links, Inc, where she serves on the national finance and investment committee.

 

Leona M. Bridges

Leona M. Bridges

('79) Director, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency
Leona Bridges is a director of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Board. Formerly, Bridges was the managing director for Barclays Global Investors. Bridges serves on numerous community and nonprofit boards, including the West Bay Local Development Corporation, the American Baptist Seminary of the West and the Advisory Council of Golden Gate University's Ageno School of Business. She has also been involved with the Saint Mark's School Inc. (trustee) and the San Francisco Alumni Delta Community Foundation (chief financial officer and treasurer). Bridges was named the 2006 Citizen of the Year by the National Council of Negro Women. Bridges received a B.A. in business administration from SF State in 1979 and was inducted into the SF State Alumni Hall of Fame in 2011.

 

Willie L. Brown, Jr.

('55) Member, California State Assembly (1964 – 1995)
Speaker, California State Assembly (1980 – 1995)
41st Mayor of San Francisco (1996 – 2004)

Willie Lewis Brown, Jr. served over thirty years in the California State Assembly, spending fourteen and a half years as its speaker, and later served as the 41st mayor of San Francisco, the first African American to do so. The San Francisco Chronicle called Brown “one of San Francisco’s most notable mayors” who had “celebrity beyond the city’s boundaries.” Brown was born in Mineola, Texas and attended a segregated high school. He moved to San Francisco in 1951, attending San Francisco State University and graduating in 1955 with a degree in liberal studies. Brown earned a J.D. from University of California, Hastings College of the Law in 1958. He spent several years in private practice before gaining election in his second attempt to the California Assembly in 1964. Brown became the Democrats' whip in 1969 and speaker in 1980. He was known for his ability to manage people and maintain party discipline. According to The New York Times, Brown became one of the country's most powerful state legislators. During his last years in the Assembly, Brown maintained control, despite a slim Republican majority, by gaining the vote of several Republicans. Near the end of his final term, Brown left the legislature to become mayor of San Francisco. Brown served as San Francisco mayor from January 8, 1996 until January 8, 2004. His tenure as mayor is marked by a significant increase in real estate development, public works, city beautification, and other large-scale city projects. He presided over the "dot-com" era at a time when San Francisco's economy was rapidly expanding. Brown presided over the city’s most diverse administration with more Asian Americans, women, Latinos, gays, and African Americans than his predecessors.

 

Dana Corvin

Dana Corvin

(’73) Community leader
Dana Corvin serves on the boards of the Morris Stulsaft Foundation (secretary), the Contemporary Jewish Museum, the Mt. Zion Health Fund (secretary) and the Jewish Community Federation Board (at-large member) and has sat on numerous boards, including the Congregation Emanu-el, the Jewish News Weekly of Northern California and the American Red Cross of the Bay Area. Corvin is also a member of United Way's Women Leadership Council. She received her M.A. in special education from SF State in 1973 and taught special education in the San Francisco Unified School District. Corvin owned and operated Cal-Steam before selling the company in 2008. She is married to Harris E. Weinberg, Esq.

 

Greg Cosko

Chief Executive Officer of Hathaway Dinwiddie Construction Company
Greg Cosko is president and CEO of Hathaway Dinwiddie Construction Company, overseeing all three company offices (San Francisco, Santa Clara and Los Angeles). Hathaway Dinwiddie, formed by the merger of two of the oldest construction companies in California, was responsible for such famous structures as the Transamerica Pyramid, Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco and the headquarters of Nestlé USA in Glendale. Cosko was executive-in-charge of building the Getty Center in Los Angeles, one of the largest private construction projects ever built in California. A native of Pasadena, he attended San Francisco State in the mid-1970s and left to begin his career with Hathaway Dinwiddie. Cosko serves on the board of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce and the board of regents of Serra High. He and his wife, Deborah, live in Hillsborough and have three sons, ages 21, 19 and 12.

 

Photo of Val Dolcini

Val Dolcini

('85) Administrator, Farm Service Agency, United States Department of Agriculture
Val Dolcini is administrator for the Farm Service Agency, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Previously, he served as state executive director of the California Farm Service Agency where he oversaw 30 offices from the Oregon border south to the Imperial Valley whose primary mission is to deliver federal farm programs to California's farmers and ranchers. He was appointed to that position by two presidents – President Clinton in 1999 and President Obama in 2009. Prior to those appointments, Dolcini worked for a Fortune 500 technology and management consulting firm, where he guided government relations programs for company clients, strategized with business teams about relationship development and consulted on a wide range of political matters. Earlier in his career, Dolcini spent a number of years as a senior staff member for California's governor, lieutenant governor and two members of the state's congressional delegation. A fifth-generation Californian, Dolcini received a B.A. in history from San Francisco State University in 1985 and earned a J.D. from Golden Gate University School of Law. He lives in Davis, Calif., with his wife and son.

 

Photo of Donald "Don" Endo

Donald "Don" Endo

Senior Director, Tax with BDO USA, LLP
Since 2012, Don Endo has been the Senior Director, Tax with BDO USA, LLP. BDO provides assurance, tax, financial advisory and consulting services to a wide range of publicly traded and privately held companies. Prior to this, Mr. Endo was CFO at Qvale Automotive Group, Inc. for 16 years (QAG operated dealerships selling high-end luxury cars).

Mr. Endo also served on the Board of Directors for QAG as well as a number of companies owned privately by the family group. In addition, he currently serves as a Community Advisory Board member of the San Francisco Bay Region of Wells Fargo Bank. Mr. Endo and his wife Katherine Eriko Endo live in Castro Valley. They have two adult daughters; Kaitlin Endo is a 2014 graduate of San Diego State and Jessica Endo is currently a student in the SF State/UCSF Joint Doctorate of Physical Therapy program.

 

Nancy Fudem

Nancy Fudem

Philanthropist
Nancy Fudem is a longtime resident of San Francisco and a lifelong resident of the Bay Area. She has a bachelor of arts in Spanish from the University of California, Los Angeles and a masters of arts in Spanish from the University of California, Berkeley. Fudem has devoted the last 20 years to raising her family, volunteering in local schools and running a small entrepreneurial jewelry and accessory business. Her late spouse, Frank, was a commercial real estate broker and an active member of the San Francisco business community. Fudem's son, Jonathan, is a student at the University of Southern California, where he studies media and technology, and works for the campus television station.

 

Ted Griggs

Ted Griggs

('84) President, Comcast SportsNet
Ted Griggs was promoted to president of Comcast SportsNet Bay Area in July 2012. He began with the network in 1998, first serving as vice president of production and operations, then vice president and general manager. Under Griggs' leadership, Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, together with its sister network Comcast SportsNet California, has established itself as Northern California's leading source for live game coverage, comprehensive on-air and online local sports news, debate and analysis. In 2008, Griggs was ranked first in the San Jose Mercury News' "Bay Area's 25 Most Powerful Sports People" and has remained in the top five on the annual list. He has also guided Comcast SportsNet's community relations efforts, which include the All-Star Teacher Award and Comcast Cares Day, programming and promotional support for the Special Olympics of Northern California and the Make-A-Wish Foundation Greater Bay Area Chapter and fundraising support for the Willie Mays Boys and Girls Club at Hunters Point. Griggs received his B.A. in radio/TV in 1984 from San Francisco State University, where he is a Notable Alumnus in Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts (BECA). Currently, he serves on the SF State Athletics Advisory Board and is working with BECA on the Sports Broadcasting initiative. He is also a member of the CSU Entertainment Advisory Board. Griggs resides in Novato with his wife, Amy (B.A., '86 Radio/TV), and their three children.

 

Mary Huss

Mary Huss

Publisher, San Francisco Business Times
Mary Huss has served as president and publisher of the San Francisco Business Times since 1991. Huss has worked on business journals in Philadelphia and St. Louis, as well as on the St. Louis Post Dispatch and the Riverfront Times, a St. Louis alternative weekly that she helped launch shortly after earning her degree in journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1976. She is credited with turning around the San Francisco Business Times. Under her leadership, the paper has launched many annual awards programs, including the "100 Most Influential Women in Business," the "Top 100 Women-Owned Businesses," the "Corporate Philanthropy Awards" and the "Fastest-Growing Private Companies." In addition to her duties at the helm of the San Francisco Business Times, Huss donates to numerous causes and charities, volunteers her time and serves on SF State's College of Business Advisory Board.

 

Judy Marcus

Judy Marcus

('62) Philanthropist
Judy Marcus has been dedicated to community service, contributing her time and talents to such organizations as the Humane Society of Silicon Valley, Montalvo Arts Center, Breast Cancer Connections and Avenidas Senior Center and Community Services Agency in Mountain View. She graduated from SF State in 1962 with a B.A. in physical education. Marcus and her husband, George, who graduated with a B.A.in economics from SF State in 1965, established the International Center for the Arts at SF State in 2005. They are also co-owners of Kokkari Restaurant in San Francisco and Evvia in Palo Alto.

 

Herb Myers

Herb Myers

Past Foundation Vice Chair
Retired Regional Business Banking President, Wells Fargo

Herb Myers was the regional business banking president, San Francisco Bay Region, for Wells Fargo & Company. Before joining Wells Fargo in 1998, Myers spent 20 years at Citibank in various executive positions. He serves on the boards of the San Francisco Travel Association (formerly the Convention and Visitors Bureau, past chairman), the Salesian Boys' and Girls' Club of San Francisco, Foster Farm Bowl, the Bay Area Gridiron Society. Other boards on which Myers formerly served include the San Francisco Symphony Board of Trustees, SF School Volunteers, Fort Mason, UNCF and Trinity Children & Family Services Foundation, San Francisco General Hospital Foundation, past VP, and The Buck Institute for Age Research. Myers earned his M.S. in management from MIT and is married to Rita Myers.

 

Don Nasser

Don Nasser

('63) President, Bay Properties, Inc.
Don Nasser is president of Bay Properties, Inc., and managing director of his family's Castro Theatre, which his grandfather, father and uncles opened in San Francisco in 1922. Nasser earned his B.A. in business/real estate from SF State in 1963 and then worked in banking for two decades before becoming president of Bay Properties and taking over the reins of the Castro Theatre. Nasser supports, among other arts and civic causes, SF State athletics and the University's campaign for a new performing arts center. In 2010, Nasser was inducted into the SF State Alumni Hall of Fame. Nasser is married to Gale C. Nasser.

 

Neda Nobari

Neda Nobari

('84) Founder and President, Neda Nobari Foundation
After more than twenty years as a director and vice chair of Bebe Stores, Inc.’s board of directors, Ms. Nobari stepped down in 2006. Prior to Bebe Stores, Inc., she worked in the software industry. Ms. Nobari is the founder and president of the Neda Nobari Foundation, a small private foundation established in 2008, which primarily supports organizations associated with the arts, education, the environment, homelessness and poverty. The foundation reported total assets of approximately $13 million at the end of 2013. She has served on a number of nonprofit boards such as the Iranian American Women Foundation, International Society for Children with Cancer, Mom's Against Poverty, Golestan Center for Language Immersion and Cultural Education and The Redford Center. Ms. Nobari and her then husband, alumnus Manny Mashouf, donated $10 million to the former SF State Creative Arts Campaign. Ms. Nobari later redirected her portion of the gift to the John Paul Leonard Library (Nobari Hall on the first floor is named in her honor). Ms. Nobari was a member of the Board of Directors of the SF State University Foundation (2009-2010) and the University Corporation (2008-2009). Ms. Nobari relocated to New Hampshire in 2010 to begin a Master’s in Liberal Studies (focusing on the intersection of diaspora and cultural identity of Iranian-American women) at Dartmouth College and graduated in June 2015. She returned to the Bay Area in 2014 and lives in Orinda, California.

 

Dennis O'Donnell

Dennis O'Donnell

('82) Sports Anchor, KPIX CBS 5 Television
Dennis O'Donnell is the Sports Director at CBS 5. In 2008 and 2009, he received an APTRA award for Best Sports Segment. In 2009, 2008 and 2005, he received a Northern California Area Emmy for on-camera talent, anchor/sports reporter. In 2008, he received another Emmy for sports program feature/segment. He appears Sunday through Thursday on Eyewitness News. O'Donnell joined the CBS 5 News team in August 2000 and has been a fixture in Bay Area sports broadcasting since 1982. Prior to CBS 5, O'Donnell was executive sports producer at KRON-TV. O'Donnell is the pre-season voice of the San Francisco 49ers, calling the play-by-play on CBS 5. He has called play-by play for more than 80 sporting events since 1999, including Stanford and USF basketball for Fox Sports and Bay TV. While at KRON, O'Donnell's contributions helped earn the station the honor of "The Best Sportscast in California" by the Associated Press on five separate occasions. Along with his work at KRON, O'Donnell has anchored sports with KOVR in Sacramento and KFTY in Santa Rosa. In addition to the daily sportscast on CBS 5 Eyewitness News (Monday-Friday at 6 and 11 p.m. and Sunday-Thursday at 10 p.m. on The CW 44/Cable 12), O'Donnell hosts or has hosted CBS 5's NFL post-game show "The 5th Quarter," "49ers Preview," "Last Honest Sports Show" and the number-one rated Sunday night sports show, "Gameday" (every Sunday night at 11:30 p.m.). O'Donnell attended San Francisco State University, is married and lives in San Francisco. He donates time to charitable causes including the Alzheimer’s Association and the Leukemia Society.

 

L. Wade Rose

L. Wade Rose

Vice President of External Affairs, Dignity Health
L. Wade Rose is vice president of external and government relations for Dignity Health (formerly Catholic Healthcare West), the largest hospital provider in California and the western U.S. The Dignity Health network of 40 hospitals, more than 10,000 physicians and approximately 60,000 employees serve a population spanning 22 million people across California, Arizona and Nevada. Rose is responsible for developing strategic leadership relations between Dignity Health and key external organizations and individuals. Rose focuses on coordinating strategic goals and objectives with governmental initiatives at the federal, state and local levels and linking Dignity Health to significant private organizations and individuals within communities. Rose serves on the boards of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, SPUR and the Museum of the African Diaspora and is a member of the board of the California Alliance of Catholic Health Care. He also serves as the Dignity Health representative to the Bay Area Council, San Francisco Committee on Jobs and the Washington, D.C.-based Partnership for Quality Care. Preceding his involvement with Dignity Health, he served on the staffs of California governors Jerry Brown and George Deukmejian and was responsible for community affairs and development at the UC Irvine and USC schools of medicine.

 

Marsha Rosenbaum

Marsha Rosenbaum

('72) Director Emerita, Drug Policy Alliance
Marsha R. Rosenbaum is an author, speaker and well-known expert on women, youth and drugs, addiction, treatment and drug policy issues. Currently, she is the president of the JK Irwin Foundation. Rosenbaum is director emerita of the San Francisco office of the Drug Policy Alliance. She has co-chaired international conferences and regularly speaks to Parent Teacher Associations, schools, drug treatment and prevention professionals and the media about teenagers and drugs and drug policy issues. From 1977 to 1995, she was the principal investigator on numerous National Institute on Drug Abuse-funded studies. Rosenbaum earned a B.A. from UC Berkeley in 1970, an M.A. in sociology in 1972 from San Francisco State and a doctorate in medical sociology from UC San Francisco in 1979. Rosenbaum supports numerous community, human services and environmental causes.

 

Dottie Simmons

('94) Strategic Planning Specialist
Dottie Simmons spent 15 years at HBO, most recently as the Director of Strategy and Planning for all HBO Original Programming, working on series and films including "Game of Thrones," "Boardwalk Empire," "Veep," "The Normal Heart" and "Behind the Candelabra."  Simmons studied in the department of Broadcasting and Electronic Communication Arts (BECA) at SF State and earned her B.A. in Media Management with a minor in Women’s Studies in 1994. After graduation, she joined the San Francisco office of Turner Network Sales as a Sales Assistant and quickly advanced to the role of Operations Director for the Western Region. While there, she helped launch several networks including Turner Classic Movies and CNN International. Having spent five years with Turner, Simmons returned to Los Angeles to be closer to her family. In 2000 she began working for HBO, first overseeing operations for HBO Films, then expanding her responsibilities to include all HBO Original Programming. Simmons has served on the BECA Alumni Advisory Board and the California State University Entertainment Industry Initiative Advisory Board.

 

Jerry Simmons

Community leader
Jerry Simmons retired in June 2011 after more than 40 years with Hyatt Hotels. The six years prior to his retirement, Simmons was the managing director of the Hyatt Regency San Francisco. In March 2011, Simmons received the San Francisco Hotel Hero Award for his lifetime achievement as a hotel executive. A firm believer in giving back to the community, Simmons helped raise $10,000 for the American Heart Association through his hotel in 2009. Simmons played college football at Bethune-Cookman University in Florida, and, prior to his hotel career, played professional football for 10 seasons in the NFL for the Pittsburgh Steelers, New Orleans Saints, Atlanta Falcons, Chicago Bears and Denver Broncos. He is married to Lucky Simmons.

 

David Simon

David L. Simon

('72) President, Simon Bros. Media
David L. Simon is a fourth generation San Franciscan and earned his B.A. degree in Journalism at San Francisco State in 1972.

Simon is a uniquely qualified entertainment industry executive whose professional career has covered the US and the world as a senior executive with major media giants such as Fox, Disney and DreamWorks. He is widely respected for his expertise in television programming, production and management.

Simon launched and operated television channels in the U.S. and international territories. He has an extensive background in creating content for television and digital platforms. During his tenure at the Fox Television Stations such acclaimed series as “America’s Most Wanted” and “Cops” were initially developed. He created and managed Disney’s first international television production company, based in London, with offices in eight countries, producing 45 weekly television series in 40 countries. He was also responsible for multi-national event programming such as The Grand Opening of EuroDisney and developed the company’s first international television co-production of features and series. He expanded his production knowledge into digital media as head of DreamWorks Television Animation Studio, where he oversaw production of series and made-for-video features.

Founding his company, Simon Bros. Media, he continued to work on content development and production with major studios such as Sony, Turner, MGM, Microsoft and Fox, and launched two animation studios in Los Angeles and Berlin. Simon is currently the Chief Operating Officer of New Music Channel.

Simon is a recipient of several awards, including Primetime Emmy Awards and a New York Film Festival Silver Medal. He served as president of the National Association of Television Program Executives as well as on the board of governors of the Television Academy and board of directors of the British Academy of Film & Television Arts, Los Angeles.

His strengths are the result of hands-on experience in all aspects of the media business. His distinctive management style encompasses team building with a constructive and motivational attitude. He is a natural leader and facilitator, with a consummate record of achieving goals.

Simon resides in Malibu, CA with his wife, Linda. Their daughter Michelle is a television story producer.

 

Camilla Smith

Community leader, author
Camilla Smith is principal of Smith Research Associates. In addition to her service on the SF State Foundation Board, Smith was on the University president's executive committee for the College of Creative Arts capital campaign and served on the previous SF State Foundation board. Smith is a member of the Bay Area Public Affairs Executive Committee for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Additionally, Smith serves on several national and community boards, including the National Public Radio Foundation, the Leakey Foundation, San Francisco Performances, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Music @ Menlo, Friends and Foundation of the San Francisco Public Library, Library Advisory Board at the University of California at Berkeley and the Council of Friends of the Bancroft Library. Smith edits the newsletter for The Bancroft Library, Bancroftiana. She and her husband, George Smith Jr., have five children and eight grandchildren.

 

Russ Stanley

Russ Stanley

('88) Managing Vice President, SF Giants
Russ Stanley has been with the San Francisco Giants since 1989. He is responsible for the ticket sales of all events at AT&T Park and the team's spring training facility, Scottsdale Stadium. He was a key player in developing the team's charter seat program as well as the Giants’ secondary market and dynamic pricing rollouts. Stanley and his dedicated team of sales, operations, client relations and luxury suites staff have implemented many progressive ideas that have improved Giants fan experience and satisfaction. During his tenure, the team has developed many fan-friendly programs to alleviate the pressure for season ticket holders who must purchase and use 83 game tickets. Whether it's reselling tickets online, relaying via email, finding ticket partners or donating tickets, Stanley's team has built the infrastructure to do it all electronically. The Giants' dynamic pricing program, where the team changes prices based on demand, has changed the ticketing business. Stanley's team of ticket and sales professionals continues to be at the forefront of the sports ticketing world. The SF State graduate came to the Giants after eight years at Marine World, in both Redwood City and Vallejo.

 

Brent Stranathan

Brent Stranathan

('75) Vice President of Broadcast Distribution, CBS Television
A broadcast industry veteran with more than 32 years of experience, Brent Stranathan has been the vice president of Broadcast Distribution at CBS Television in New York since 1991. As VP, he has senior executive operational responsibility for the network’s program integration and distribution to affiliates nationwide. Since joining CBS, he has led the organization through rapidly changing times, including the transition from analog to digital signals and the introduction of high definition TV. In addition, he is a two-time technical Emmy Award winner for his work on TV network coverage of the Winter Olympics in 1988 (for ABC) and in 1998 (for CBS). He is a member of various industry trade organizations and was the former president and chair of the Society of Satellite Professionals. In addition, he has spoken at a number of broadcast/telecom industry conferences, including the SATCON (Satellite and Content Delivery Conference & Expo), the HD World Conference & Exposition, and the Satellite 2011 Conference. Mr. Stranathan was inducted into the SF State Alumni Hall of Fame in 2012. He and his wife, Elizabeth, live in Garden City, NY.

 

 

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SF State Representatives

 

Les Wong

Les Wong

President, SF State
Leslie E. Wong joined San Francisco State University as its 13th president in August of 2012. He oversees one of the nation’s premier urban comprehensive universities offering baccalaureate degrees in 123 academic areas; 27 credential programs; 35 certificate programs; 62 master’s degrees; and 4 doctoral degrees. He leads more than 3,000 faculty and staff as they serve a student population of over 30,000.

President Wong holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Gonzaga University, a master’s degree in Experimental Psychology from Eastern Washington University, and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from Washington State University. Early in his career he had faculty appointments at Pierce College and Evergreen State College in Washington State. He served six years as Academic Dean of Evergreen State College before accepting an appointment as Provost and Academic Vice President at the University of Southern Colorado where he led efforts that significantly enhanced the institutions academic technology infrastructure. He also served as Interim President at the University of Southern Colorado where he was instrumental in augmenting institutional funding from both private and public sources. In 1999, Wong accepted an appointment as Vice President for Academic Affairs at Valley City State University in North Dakota. At Valley City State, he fostered innovative uses of technology, substantially grew institutional grant funding, and established international exchange programs in China and Mexico. In 2004, Dr. Wong was appointed president of Northern Michigan University where he led a successful recovery from accreditation concerns, developed the institution’s first comprehensive strategic plan, increased institutional grant funding, and fostered institutional ties with the community. While at NMU, Dr. Wong's leadership in bringing technology to rural areas led to visits by President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama.

President Wong maintains research interests in educational technology, academic assessment and the role of underrepresented minorities in the academy. He serves on numerous boards and community organizations including the AASCU New Presidents Academy, Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics, the Bay Area Council and the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce.

 

Weston Adams

SF State Student Representative
Weston Adams is currently a student assistant in the Dean’s Office, College of Business at San Francisco State University. Prior to that, he provided administrative support to the California Youth Basketball League. Weston was on the Honor Roll throughout high school, was co-captain of his high school football team, and was also member of the school’s track and field team. Weston is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Business Administration at SF State and is expected to graduate in Jun 2019.

 

Philip King

Philip King

Ph.D., Associate Professor of Economics, SF State
Philip King is a professor of economics at SF State. King's tenure at the University began in 1987 after a nearly two-year professorship at State University of New York (SUNY) at Cortland. In 1978, King earned a B.A. in philosophy and economics from Washington University, where he was nominated to Omicron Delta Epsilon, an economics honor society. King received his Ph.D. in economics from Cornell University in 1987. He has published numerous books, articles and policy papers and has given talks and presentations on various subjects, including international economics and international economic policy, the economic growth of California and the economy of California's coastline. At SF State, King has served on a number of administrative and governing boards and has been the cluster coordinator for Third World Development since 2004. King's statewide service includes numerous successful economic impact critiques of, for example, Walmart Supercenters' impacts on California communities. King is married to SF State alumna Sharmila Kumari King (M.A., '95 Economics), a professor of economics at University of the Pacific.

 

Robert J. Nava

Robert J. Nava

Foundation President,
Vice President, University Advancement, SF State

Robert Nava is vice president for university advancement at SF State and is president of the San Francisco State University Foundation. Prior to coming to SF State, Nava held various senior leadership positions at the University of California, Riverside and served as the university's lobbyist in Sacramento and Washington D.C. During much of his 19-year UC Riverside career, Nava also taught as an adjunct faculty member in CSU Fullerton's Chicano Studies program and worked in advocacy for the Orange County Human Relations Commission. Nava served as the associate vice president for institutional advancement at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) from 2005 to 2010, during which time he organized the university's centennial campaign, which raised almost half of its $200 million goal in a down economy before its public launch in September 2010. Nava earned a B.S. in Criminal Justice from UTEP in 1979 and a J.D. from Western State University College of Law in Orange County, Calif. Nava is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CRFE) and was a member of the Harvard Graduate School of Education's Institute for Management and Leadership in Education (MLE), class of 2001. He also was an education fellow with the Institute on Educational Leadership, Washington, D.C. Nava is married to Catherine Aguilera-Nava. The couple have three children and one grandchild.

 

Ann Sherman

Senior Associate Vice President for Human Resources

Ann Sherman currently serves San Francisco State University (SF State) as the Senior Associate Vice President for Human Resources. She joined SF State in April 2014, after almost 7 years as Director of Human Resources, EEO Officer, and Title IX Officer for Northern Michigan University (NMU). Prior to NMU, Ann worked in a variety of human resources and organizational development roles in the medical device, automotive, energy/utility, and insurance industries for organizations such as GE Healthcare, Datex-Ohmeda, Bundy, MichCon, and AAA Michigan. 

Ann started her undergraduate studies at Michigan Technological University as a computer science major. She subsequently switched to a course of study in biology, but realized that talking to machines and communing with animals was less fulfilling than helping people realize their full potential. As a result, she finished her undergraduate degree at the University of Michigan in Dearborn and embarked on a Ph.D. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology at Wayne State University in Detroit.

Ann’s five criteria for this latest career move have been overwhelmingly met at SF State and by the San Francisco Bay area. Ann has two sons, one a sophomore at Northern Michigan University, and the other a graduate of the University of Michigan. She loves to travel, read, kayak, and explore.

 

Jennifer SummitJennifer Summit

Interim Provost / Vice President for Academic Affairs

Jennifer Summit received her Ph.D. in English from Johns Hopkins University in 1995. She served as the Dean of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning at San Francisco State since 2013. At San Francisco State, she led the creation of the new Division of Undergraduate Education and Academic Planning, which includes general education, writing in the disciplines and writing across the curriculum, student academic support and advising, curriculum development, student learning assessment, the Metro College Success Program, and the Institute for Civic and Community Engagement. Summit also co-chaired the campus wide Student Success and Graduation Initiative Task Force, which pulls together administrators, faculty, staff and students, to monitor and increase the university’s graduation rates.

She was previously at Stanford University from 1995 - 2013, where she was a professor of English and served in multiple administrative and leadership capacities. Summit was Stanford's director of integrated learning, the chair of the Committee for the Review of the Undergraduate Major and the chair of the University Writing and Oral Communication Requirements Revision. She also served for three years as the chair of the department of English at Stanford, and co-founded and directed the university's Center for Medieval and Early Modern Studies. In 2012, she served as an American Council on Education Fellow at San Jose State University, where she led the Provost's Task Force on Student Engagement.

A widely-published scholar of medieval and early modern English Literature, Dr. Summit has received major fellowships and awards from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the Modern Language Association. Summit's scholarly interests bridge the medieval and early modern periods and focus on the histories of reading, literature, and knowledge, with a special interest in literacy and the disciplines today. Her published work includes Action vs. Contemplation: Why an Ancient Debate Still Matters, co-authored with Blakey Vermeule (University of Chicago Press),  Memory's Library: Medieval Books in Early Modern England (Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press, 2008), which was awarded the Roland H. Bainton Book Prize by the Sixteenth Century Society and Conference (SCSC) and the John Ben Snow Foundation Book Prize from the North American Conference on British Studies (NCBS), and Lost Property: the Woman Writer and English Literary History, 1380-1589 (Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press, 2000). With Caroline Bicks (Boston College) she is co-editor of the Palgrave History of British Women's Writing, Vol 2: 1500-1610 (2010), and with David Wallace (U. Penn) she co-edited a special issue of the Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (2008) on "Rethinking Periodization." She has also published widely on issues of curriculum design, student learning and innovation in higher education.

 

Venesia Thompson-Ramsay

Venesia Thompson-Ramsay

Foundation Secretary and Treasurer
Chief of Operations, University Advancement, SF State

Venesia Thompson-Ramsay is chief of operations for university advancement at SF State and secretary and treasurer for the San Francisco State University Foundation. Thompson-Ramsay has more than 15 years' experience working in nonprofit and higher education settings. Prior to coming to SF State, Thompson served as senior director, finance and administration at Urban Habitat, a policy, advocacy, research nonprofit in Oakland, CA. Prior to joining Urban Habitat, she worked as the assistant director of the Center for Urban Redevelopment and Education (CURE), an applied research and community outreach center based at Florida Atlantic University. Thompson-Ramsay serves on the board of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), East Bay Chapter. Thompson-Ramsay earned a B.A. in Language and Linguistics from the University of the West Indies, Mona and a M.A in Political Science from Florida Atlantic University.

 

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Directors Emeriti

Lee Blitch

Community Leader

 

Don W. Scoble

(’61, MA ’71) Community Leader

 

Laurie Pitman

Philanthropist

 

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