NEN Executive Steering Committee
- Cindy Brandon
Executive Director, SF SAFE
Formerly the Executive Director for the San Mateo County Criminal Justice Council, Cindy has been Executive Director of SF SAFE since November 2004 and has over 15 years of experience in the criminal justice field, both in the public and non-profit sectors. Cindy’s areas of expertise include crisis intervention, victim advocacy, conflict resolution, personal safety, crime prevention, NERT training, and Neighborhood Watch.
CEO, Bay Area Red Cross
Harold oversees the strategic development of Bay Area Red Cross, one of the leading American Red Cross chapters in the country, serving over 4.5 million people in six counties in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is currently helping to execute the Bay Area Campaign for Emergency Preparedness, an extensive community preparedness campaigns to train one in four Bay Area residents with life saving skills within five years.
Harold was formerly CEO of the Metropolitan New Jersey Chapter, where he restructured the chapter to better meet community needs and face the challenges in Newark and Paterson, New Jersey – one of the toughest urban areas in the country.
Director, Institute for Civic and Community Engagement, San Francisco State University (SFSU)
Since the mid-90s, Gerald’s work has focused on how the knowledge processes of the university can combine with the knowledge assets of communities to generate new knowledge that has direct impact on community needs. In 1998, he became the Community Service-Learning Director, expanding the program into 43 departments of the University, and from 2004 to 2006, he served as the first Service-Learning Faculty Scholar in the California State University Office of the Chancellor. In May 2008, he became director of the Institute for Civic and Community Engagement (ICCE).
- David Gershon
Founder and CEO, Empowerment Institute
David is one of the world’s leading authorities on behavior change and large-scale transformation. His clients range from large organizations and cities to social entrepreneurs and small businesses. He has addressed issues from organizational talent development to environmental behavior change, from emergency preparedness to low-income neighborhood revitalization.
He is the author of many books, including the best-selling “Empowerment: The Art of Creating Your Life As You Want It”, “Low Carbon Diet: A 30 Day Program to Lose 5,000 Pounds” and “Social Change 2.0: A Blueprint for Reinventing Our World”.
David co-directs the Empowerment Institute Certification Program, a school for transformative change leadership. He has lectured at Harvard, MIT, and Duke Universities and served as an advisor to the Clinton White House and United Nations on sustainability and behavior change issues.
- Michael Pappas
- Executive Director, San Francisco Interfaith Council
A formerly ordained priest of the Greek Orthodox Church, Michael has served parishes in Palos Hills, IL; Stockton, CA; and San Francisco.
During his 14-year ministry, Michael was been a prolific writer, contributing articles to numerous religious and secular periodicals. He has also devoted energy to work with the homeless and furthering ecumenical/interfaith relationships. After stepping down from active ministry in 2004, he became Executive Director of the San Francisco Interfaith Council.
Michael is father of two sons, George and Paul, and one daughter, Julia.
- John Power
- Executive Director, The Volunteer Center
As Executive Director of The Volunteer Center, which serves San Francisco and San Mateo counties, John leads an organization that has for over sixty years nurtured long-standing relationships among the Bay Area’s business, government, nonprofit, and volunteer communities.
An avid volunteer, John is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Goodwill Industries of San Francisco, San Mateo, and Marin, and on the statewide Volunteer Centers of California Board.
- Kelly Quirke
- Executive Director, Friends of the Urban Forest (FUF)
FUF is a community-building organization that has planted more than 42,000 trees along the streets of every San Francisco neighborhood since 1981.
Prior to joining FUF, Kelly was the interim director of the International Bill of Rights (IBOR) Project, which seeks to establish a legally enforceable Bill of Rights for all the worlds’ peoples. Kelly is also a former Executive Director of the Rainforest Action Network (RAN).
Before joining RAN, Kelly was national coordinator of Greenpeace’s U.S. Temperate Forest campaign and a national coordinator of the USA Climate Campaign.
- Dr. Isabel Wade
- Former Executive Director, Neighborhood Parks Council (NPC)
Dr. Wade created NPC in 1996 to “take back” parks which had suffered decline due to budget cuts. NPC has grown to include 120+ park groups and 4,000 park volunteers. The organization links San Francisco’s citizens, neighborhood parks, and local government. Groups sponsor work days and special events to directly improve the condition and usage of their parks.
Dr. Wade’s other achievements include winning one of the first Good Housekeeping Magazine national awards for excellence in the environmental field, founding the State of California’s Urban Forestry Program under Governor Jerry Brown; acting as the first President of San Francisco Friends of the Urban Forest; founding the California Relief Program at the Trust for Public Land; and co-founding the National AIDS Memorial Grove in Golden Gate Park.