our Leadership

STAND! For Families Free of Violence is proud of the leadership that comes from both our Board of Directors and Administrative Team. Below is a list of Board Officers and the Administrative Team Leaders.

The Board's Role

  • Governing the organization by establishing broad policies and objectives
  • Selecting, supporting, and reviewing the performance of the chief executive officer
  • Insuring the availability of adequate financial resources
  • Approving annual budgets and strategic planning
  • Accounting for the ethics, compliance, and performance of the organization

board of directors

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Kitty Cole, Chair

Kitty Cole founded Kitty Cole & Associates, a business coaching, training and speaking company in 1993. She has coached and trained thousands of real estate agents and managers, mortgage brokers and owners, and executives in other businesses.  Kitty has also conducted workshops, seminars, facilitated company retreats and spoken at national real estate conventions. Her clients include many real estate companies in the Bay Area.

Prior to Kitty’s coaching/training business she sold real estate for Mason McDuffie, a regional real estate company in Northern California. Prior to that, she was a buyer and store manager for I. Magnin, a national specialty store, and as a buyer for Robinson’s in southern California. 

Kitty holds a Bachelor’s degree in Management from St. Mary’s College.

Kitty is passionate about her work with STAND as she believes that helping women and their families will change the economic environment in this country for the better.  She has “pulled her sisters along for the ride” with STAND and other charities for more than thirty years.

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David Dolder, Vice Chair

David has 40+ years as a professional and volunteer in the family violence arena.  He has worked with the Boy Scouts of America as a District Scout Executive and Council Deputy Scout Executive. He holds a Bachelors and Master’s Degree in Psychology from Chico State University.  In addition, he was licensed as Marriage and Family Therapist. 

David has a wealth of professional experience.  He worked as a Counselor and Coordinator of Adult Education in the Education Department Presidio of San Francisco. He was the first Executive Director of the Family Stress Center.  He also has worked with an independent entrepreneur to establish a sales training program, and has 15 years of experience as an independent insurance agent.

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Darlene Espinoza, Treasurer

Darlene has been in the finance and lending industry for over 38 years.  She is passionate about her profession and as a result – nearly 100% of her business is referred by Financial Planners, Experienced Realtors, Family Law, Estate Attorneys, Tax Attorneys, and past Clients.  Her entire focus is building a relationship of trust, and being a comprehensive resource to the clients and referral partners.  Her background includes Life, Property & Casualty Insurance Agent – Certified Financial Planner – Certified Mortgage Planner and now Executive Loan Advisor.  She has been as the Top Mortgage Professional for the San Francisco Bay Area (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015)

She has been with RPM Mortgage, Inc. for over 10 years as an Executive Loan Advisor providing residential and commercial mortgage loans.  She is a devoted mother of three and has six wonderful grandchildren.  She has supported and volunteered for many worthwhile organizations over the years and has served as Board Member for Women’s Initiative and now with STAND!.

Nadia Costa, Board Secretary 

Nadia Costa is a shareholder at Miller Starr Regalia, a professional law corporation, in Walnut Creek and Newport Beach offices. Nadia is Co-Chair of Miller Starr Regalia's Land Use Practice Group and serves as the Vice-Chair of Programs for the Land Use Committee for the State and Local Government Section of the American Bar Association.

She attended the UC-Santa Barbara, B.A., 1992; UC-Los Angeles, Master of Social Work, 1996; University of California Berkeley School of Law - Boalt Hall, J.D., 2001 and was admitted in 2001, California; U.S. District Court, Central District of California.

She is a member of the American Bar Association, the State & Local Government Section-Council; Building Industry Association; Professional Women in Building Council; California Association of GHADs-Board; International Council of Shopping Centers; Urban Land Institute; and STAND! for Families Free of Violence.

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Julianne Hummer, Board Assistant Secretary

Juliane has a background in lending, having worked for RPM Mortgage and Prospect Mortgage. She uses her organizational skills gleaned from years as a lender, event planner and executive assistant to close today’s complex transactions in real estate. A licensed real estate agent, Juliane expertly coordinates the escrows from start to finish. She also manages listing coordination, team leads and client satisfaction. She has a deep love for giving back to her community and beyond. She volunteers for several different non-profits around the Bay Area, including STAND! For Families Against Violence and The Taylor Family Foundation. She also is a member of the Danville Chamber of Commerce, and her team at RE/MAX Accord is a member of the Castro Valley Chamber of Commerce, helping put on and participate in several events throughout the year, such as the Castro Valley Car Show and the Chili Cook-Off.

 

 

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Soraya Golesorkhi, Board Member

Soraya Golesorkhi is a realtor at Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, since 2007, in Orinda, California. Prior to joining Coldwell Banker, she was the Marketing Coordinator at PRN.  Soraya is a Certified Negotiation Expert and Seniors Real Estate Specialist.

Soraya is a graduate of Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, receiving her B.S. in Experimental Psychology with a minor in Human Factors Engineering.  She previously worked in marketing and operations.  

Soraya is a member of the Women’s Council of Realtors, the National Association of Realtors California, Association of Realtors of Contra Costa Association of Realtors, and the American Association of University Women.  Soraya is active in community service.  She volunteers as a parent advisor for Campolindo High School, a board member of: the Women’s Initiative, the Women’s Council of Realtors Contra Costa County, and for STAND! for Families Free of Violence.

 

Eric Maldonado, Board Member

Eric Maldonado joined the Board because his family has been affected by domestic violence, and he strongly supports STAND!’s mission to prevent it and to assist victims. He believes it is everyone's obligation to improve our communities for our children and grandchildren.

 

 

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Cheryl O'Connor, Board Member

Cheryl O’Connor is the Executive Director of HomeAid’s Northern California chapter.  O’Connor served as CEO of the Building Industry Association of the Bay Area (BIA) during the height of the economic recession from 2009 to 2011, successfully reducing organizational costs and redirecting its focus to political advocacy. 

As Regional Chair of the BIA in 2008, O’Connor initiated green building standards, a forerunner to the California green energy code. She held senior level leadership positions in sales and marketing and was recognized as Sales Manager of the Year and Marketing Director of the Year; in her career, she was directly responsible for the opening of more than 50 award winning new home communities.


O’Connor has received the BIA Bay Area Lifetime Legend Award and Chairman’s Award.  She also serves on several Boards including STAND! For Families Free of Violence, HomeAid America and Build it Green and holds a California Real Estate Broker’s License.

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Margot Stanford, Board Member

Margot Stanford is a native of the Bay Area. She grew up in Contra Costa County, and continues to reside and work in the area. Margot is engaged in her community, with involvement in various non profits and civic affairs committees. She actively works with various local government and education foundations in development and marketing.

Working 16 years within the Commercial Banking field for two local community banks, Margot brings experience in advocating for non profits, collaborating with local government agencies, and many valuable contacts to her board position at STAND! For Families Free of Violence. Margot is passionate in advocating ending the cycle of domestic violence and child abuse. She is honored to show her support as a member of the board.

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Karen Varnado, Board Member

Karen is a leader recognized for entrepreneurial and strategic vision, blending executive acumen with collaborative team building to achieve business goals. She is a Financial Literacy Educator with World Financial Group, a Transamerica company whose parent company is Aegon, a Forbes, Global 2000 Company. With a personal goal of educating 10,000 women by the end of 2018, Karen helps clients regardless of age, income, or level of education, to understand how money works so that they can become their own money manager.  Her prior experience includes executive management positions in the high tech industry.

Karen holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of California, Los Angeles, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from Central State University, Ohio.  She holds a Life, Health and Accident License in the state of California, Oregon, and Washington, as well as a real estate license in the State of California.

She is also a member of the Board of Directors of BART and UCLA Alumni Scholarship Programs, and prior Board member of the East Bay Rental Housing Association, and Children of Shelters, San Francisco.

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Linda Best, Board Member

Linda Best is the retired President and CEO of the East Bay Leadership Council, a private sector public policy organization, and retired Executive Director of the Contra Costa Economic Partnership.  She serves on the East Bay Broadband Consortium Steering Committee representing the Contra Costa Economic Partnership.  She is also Chair of the Steering Committee of the Contra Costa Chapter of the East Bay Conversation Project and serves on the boards of directors of Opportunity Junction and the John Muir/Mt. Diablo Community Health Fund and on the Advisory Board of the Eugene O’Neill Foundation.  She also serves as a member of the East Bay Regional Park District Advisory Committee.  She received her BA and MA degrees from Stanford University.


Administrative Team

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Rhonda James, Chief Executive Officer

With a career as clinician, educator and non-profit leader, Rhonda brings unique qualifications for leadership at STAND! For Families Free of Violence! Her dynamic non-profit leadership style has generated strong performance results at the Contra Costa Crisis Center and at Community Violence Solutions, where she served for many years respectively as Executive Director. Her early career work as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and her experience as an educator have shaped her administrative portfolio.

Rhonda’s professional passion for social justice work aligns with her personal commitment to serving the needs of vulnerable and marginalized community members.

Rhonda was honored as Alumni of the Year at John F Kennedy University in 2004 and inducted into the Contra Costa County Women’s Commission Hall of Fame under the category of Women Working for Justice in 2012.

Rhonda is a collaborator, always seeking new ways to partner to serve the needs of family violence survivors and was one of five founding board members of the Family Justice Center in Richmond California in 2011.

Mario Beltran, Chief Financial Officer

Mario has worked in this capacity at STAND! since 2015, while having been with the agency previously. He has over 20 years of leadership experience in finance.

 

Reina Sandoval-Beverly, Director of Client Services

Reina, a longtime activist and advocate, has more than 25 years of experience working to end violence against women and their children. In addition to having worked with boys in the juvenile justice system and facilitated batterers’ intervention groups, she has held leadership roles at the Solano and Contra Costa Counties in Victim Advocacy agencies, Community Violence Solutions’ Safe 4 Us Visitation and Exchange Center, and has returned to STAND! where she was with us in various leadership capacities from 1998-2002.

 

Sharon Turner, Director of Client Services

Sharon specializes in services that engage men and boys in preventing intimate partner violence, as well as community education/training and teen dating violence prevention. Sharon has worked at STAND! for more than 20 years. With a lifetime of experience in the field of domestic violence service provision as well as women's development and training, Sharon brings international expertise and a broad network of connections to STAND!