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Your work resonates throughout our community.

Leading From Within creates an environment for social sector leaders to learn, share, and grow together.  As we collect stories from program participants, our alumni community, and network of peers – we grow in connecting leaders and their work with the community at large.

By sharing our stories, our leaders inspire and leverage the impact of our social sector in Santa Barbara County and beyond.

Learn more about Our Network.

Stories From Our Network 2020 Edition

Four stories of four incredible individuals, and their purpose in creating positive change.

STORIES OF IMPACT

Sylvia Barnard

Executive Director, Good Samaritan Shelter Leading For Community Impact Sylvia Barnard was a single mom living on welfare when she put herself through college. She believed that education was her…

Teresa Alvarez

Executive Director, Carpinteria Children’s Project Emerging Leaders, 2016 Teresa Alvarez knows firsthand how critical the services are that her organization, Carpinteria Children’s Project, provides. The nonprofit preschool prepares children for kindergarten…

Gloria Soto

Executive Director, Future Leaders of America Council Member, City of Santa Maria  Emerging Leaders, 2017 Cohort     When Gloria Soto’s 8th-grade guidance counselor encouraged her to apply to Future Leaders…

Tyson Halseth

Development Director | Pacific Pride Foundation Katherine Harvey Fellows 2019-2020 Tyson Halseth has spent the better part of his career working for the Pacific Pride Foundation. He started fresh out…

Norbert K. Tan

Deputy Director | AAPI Equity Alliance Courage to Lead Participant The Tans were one of just two Asian American families at Norbert’s high school in Westchester County, just outside New…

Connie Alexander

Co-Founder & Co-Executive Director | Gateway Educational Services Courage to Lead Participant Connie comes from a long line of activist women, devoted to the idea that if you see something…

Michael Kenji (Maka) Takahara

Health Education Specialist | Department of Health & Wellness (UCSB) Katherine Harvey Fellows Alumni If you wonder if positivity is contagious, Michael Kenji (Maka) Takahara’s laugh might make you a…

Gabriela Macias-Mota

Program Director | Future Leaders of America Emerging Leaders Alumni At Future Leaders of America (FLA) we treat students like individuals, and at that age that’s transformative,” says Gabriela, having…

Frederick Janka

Executive Director | Carolyn Glasoe Bailey Foundation Courage to Lead Alumni  We can only be transformed for the better through art, and I am a passionate believer in that,” says…

Christopher Tucker

Executive Director | Garden Court Courage to Lead Alumni Garden Court independent living community in downtown Santa Barbara is transforming low-income senior housing on a national level and significantly improving…

Wendy Sims-Moten

First 5 Santa Barbara County | Executive Director & Santa Barbara Unified School Board | President Emerging Leaders Alumni Wendy Sims-Moten has served as Executive Director of First 5 Santa…

Frank Rodriguez

Policy and Communications Associate | CAUSE (Central Coast Alliance United for a Sustainable Economy) Emerging Leaders Alumni Frank Rodriguez is the person you want advocating for you. The son of…

Karin Powers

Finance and Human Resource Director | North County Rape Crisis & Child Protection Center Emerging Leaders Alumni Karin Powers graduated from Cal Poly at the age of 40. If she…

Niki Sandoval

Dr. Nicolasa “Niki” Sandoval, the first member of the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians to earn a doctorate in education, never even considered going to college. She didn’t think…

Samuel Duarte

The Little House by the Park is anything but little. The friendly faces and numerous activities that fill the center are driving big changes in the city of Guadalupe, thanks…

Chuck Flacks

Chuck is a beam of light when you see him – always with a smile and sense of honest compassion. However, he proves that anyone can get stuck in the…

Elisa Pardo

Elisa Pardo learned how a social services organization can change a life when she became a teenage parent. The Community Action Commission of Santa Barbara County (CACSB) helped her in…

Danna D. McGrew

Partner | Bartlett, Pringle, & Wolf Katherine Harvey Fellows Alumni Danna’s talents extend well beyond her accounting and business consulting expertise. With exceptional candor and positivity, Danna juggles a big…

Michael Heck

State Director | Community Solutions, Inc. Leading for Community Impact Alumni For someone who spent 10 years in prison, Michael Heck’s path to leadership was anything but ordinary.  And yet,…

Eder Gaona-Macedo

Executive Director | Future Leaders of America, Inc. Emerging Leaders Alumni As a Latino youth, Eder Gaona-Macedo felt his voice didn’t matter. He grew up as an undocumented immigrant in…

Alejandra Gutierrez

(Former) Director of the Family Service Center | SB Unified School District Emerging Leaders Alumni Alejandra is a Santa Barbara local, having grown up intertwined in two different cultures. Her Mexican…

Ben Romo

(Former) Community Recovery and Engagement Coordinator | Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Management Katherine Harvey Fellows Alumni Ben Romo draws inspiration from his personal experience as he helps lead in disaster…

Leading From Within collects stories from program participants, the alumni community and network of peers to connect its leaders with the community at large. If you prefer to reach out to our team directly, you may contact Sarah Harris at sarah@leading-from-within.org or (805) 770-3232.

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