Educare California at Silicon Valley proudly collaborates with public and private partners to operate our innovative early learning school. Our work and accomplishments are richer because of the dedication, leadership, engagement, and diversity of perspectives of our board of directors and staff. Our board is comprised of thought-leaders in the fields of education, early education, philanthropy, and supportive services. We are grateful for the expertise, passion, and advocacy our board members bring to close the opportunity gap by making high-quality early learning accessible for all children.
Shannon Hunt-Scott is the President of The Scott Foundation, a private grant-making organization focused on educational equity, social entrepreneurship, women and girls in STEM, and social impact causes. Shannon co-founded TSF with her husband, Kevin Scott, in 2014 to empower Bay Area children to achieve their personal best. Since its launch, the foundation has provided over $4 million in grants to 32 organizations. Shannon transforms her gratitude for life into philanthropic-based service for organizations making significant social impact at the local and national levels, demonstrated through her involvement as a board member for NARAL Pro-Choice America; trustee and capital campaign chair for Hillbrook School; board member of The Tech Interactive; and the Board Chair for Educare California at Silicon Valley. Shannon also serves on Educare’s Finance, Executive, and Development Committees.
Dr. Mary Ann Dewan is the Santa Clara County Superintendent of Schools. Dr. Dewan has over 30 years of experience in education, and is recognized for her expertise in early learning, special education, education reform, and change leadership. She is passionate about diversity, inclusion, equity, and social justice. Dr. Dewan currently serves as the Board Vice Chair for Educare California at Silicon Valley and as co-chair of the Kids In Common Vision Council.
Jeff Sunshine joined the David and Lucile Packard Foundation in 2007, where he serves as the Program Officer and Manager of the early learning, after-school and summer enrichment grantmaking portfolios in the Children, Families, and Communities Program. Prior to joining the Packard Foundation, Jeff was the director of programs at The Silicon Valley Community Foundation overseeing its domestic and global grantmaking activities and initiatives. He also served as the executive director of the Volunteer Center of Alameda County and as director of volunteer programs for the Archdiocese of the City and County of San Francisco. Jeff is trained as a special education teacher and as a mental health clinician. He practiced as a family therapist for 15 years both in Boston and in the Bay Area. Jeff currently serves as the Board Secretary as well as a member of the Development Committee for Educare California at Silicon Valley.
Juan Cruz is the Superintendent of the Franklin-McKinley School District. Prior to leading FMSD, Juan gained extensive experience in the East Side Union High School District, where he was a teacher and principal for 18 years. Juan started his career in education as a social science teacher at Yerba Buena High School, later served as the associate principal of Educational Development at Piedmont Hills High School, returned as the principal of Yerba Buena High School for seven years, and then briefly held the position of principal at Santa Teresa High School until his appointment as associate superintendent of Educational Services for the East Side Union High School District. He held this position for three years until his appointment in July 2015 as superintendent for Franklin-McKinley School District. He currently serves as the Board Treasurer and Chair of the Finance Committee for Educare California at Silicon Valley.
Michael Burke is Vice President of the Buffett Early Childhood Fund, an Omaha-based foundation that invests in the first five years of learning, where public education is most underfunded. Michael has more than 30 years of experience in politics, public relations and philanthropy. His work at the Buffett foundation focuses on building the coast-to-coast network of high-performing Educare schools while also providing guidance on efforts to improve state and federal policies affecting young children and their families. Before joining the foundation in 2007, Michael supervised public affairs and communications for several children’s organizations, including: Ounce of Prevention Fund, Voices for Illinois Children, and the American Academy of Pediatrics. He also managed media relations for two political campaigns in rural Illinois. Michael serves on the Governance Committee and as a board member for Educare California at Silicon Valley.
A native of San Jose, Chris Funk is the Superintendent of the East Side Union High School District. He started his career in education as a teacher at Yerba Buena High School. Eighteen of his 22 years in education were with the San Jose Unified School District, where Chris served for five years as the principal of Lincoln High School, during which time SJUSD became the first district in California to usher in the University of California, A-G default graduation requirements in 1998. Chris was promoted to Director of Human Resources in 2006. After one year, Chris was promoted to Assistant Superintendent, Division of Instruction, and played a pivotal role in supporting the passage of the Equity Policy 2010, the backbone to the new strategic plan subsequently passed by the Board of Education in 2012. Chris serves on the Finance Committee and as a board member for Educare California at Silicon Valley.
Greg Kepferle is the Chief Executive Officer of Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County, which he has proudly served since 2005. Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County is dedicated to reducing poverty by promoting economic self-sufficiency, advocating for justice, and building community. Previously, Greg held the positions of Executive Director of Catholic Charities of Central New Mexico for eight years and the Associate Executive Director of Catholic Charities of the East Bay for over seven years. His experience has also included multiple positions such as Director of the Social Justice Resource Center and Director of the Parish Social Ministry. He currently serves on the Governance Committee and Board of Educare California at Silicon Valley.
Camille Maben is the Executive Director of First 5 California. She is responsible for staffing the California Children and Families Commission, in addition to directing the work of the agency and its staff. Prior to her appointment at First 5 California, Camille served as the Division Director of the Child Development Division at the California Department of Education (CDE). She most recently served as co-chair of the State Advisory Council on Early Learning and Care. She was previously appointed by the Governor as Chief of Staff for the Office of the Secretary of Education. Earlier roles have included Division Director of the School and District Accountability Division at CDE, the superintendent's representative to the California Interscholastic Federation, senior advisor to former State Superintendent Delaine Eastin, and consultant to the Assembly Education Committee. Camille has been a school board member for the Rocklin Unified School District for over 20 years. She is currently a board member for Educare California at Silicon Valley.
Meera Mani is the Director of the Children, Families, and Communities (CFC) Program for the David and Lucile Packard Foundation. She joined the foundation in 2009 as a program officer, and in 2010 assumed responsibility for leading the preschool, after-school and summer enrichment subprogram. Prior to joining the foundation, Meera served as a research director for Preschool California. Meera was the President of the Clayton Foundation in Denver, Colorado, where her leadership was instrumental in developing initiatives, organizations and government programs focused on building a comprehensive system of high-quality early care and education in Colorado. Between 1999-2001, Meera managed the day-to-day operations of Educare Colorado, now known as Qualistar Early Learning, an initiative dedicated to improving children’s early learning experiences. Additionally, she served on various task forces, committees and collaborative projects including the Mayor’s Early Childhood Education Commission. Meera is a board member for Educare California at Silicon Valley.
Scott brings over 20 years of education policy and management experience to Kidango, where he serves as the Chief Executive Officer. As Chief Policy Advisor for Early Edge California, he helped lead the expansion of preschool access to over 170,000 children each year through the establishment of the new transitional kindergarten grade and the consolidation of existing preschool programs into the new California State Preschool Program. In 2014, Scott served as a senior fellow at the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley. In 2011, he was appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to be the Executive Director of the California Early Learning Advisory Council. Scott is also the former Director of Early Education at Kidango, where he led program operations. He is also a co-founder of a private montessori school in Oakland, California. He currently serves as the Chair of the Governance Committee for Educare California at Silicon Valley.
Since 2005, Jolene Smith has served as the Chief Executive Officer of FIRST 5 Santa Clara County, an organization that supports the healthy development of children prenatal through age 5 and enriches the lives of their families and communities throughout Santa Clara County. Jolene is recognized for her vision and leadership on ensuring that the healthy development of our youngest children is viewed as a high priority in the county. Through her efforts, Jolene has worked to engage and unite the community through strategic partnerships and collaborations to tackle challenging issues such as children’s health insurance, early literacy, high quality early education, screening and assessment for developmental delays, model court programs, and a cross-disciplinary, cross-sector community of learning. She is a board member for Educare California at Silicon Valley.