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Board Director

Vanessa Bechtel serves as President and CEO of the Ventura County Community Foundation  (Ventura County’s equivalent of the Santa Barbara Foundation). VCCF promotes  philanthropy to improve Ventura County communities. 

Prior to her work with VCCF, Vanessa served as executive director of the Santa Barbara  City College Foundation. She co-founded Monarch Wealth Strategies in 2008 and was  honored as Business Woman of the Year by the Santa Barbara Chamber of Commerce  in 2010. Bechtel was recognized as Nonprofit Leader of the Year by the Ventura  County Leadership Academy in 2019 and Humanitarian of the Year by the Teddy Bear  Cancer Foundation with her spouse, Jim. 

Vanessa graduated from UC Santa Barbara with a degree in Law and Society. In 2016,  she received her master’s degree from the Marshall School of Business at the  University of Southern California. She also received her master’s certificate from the  International Institute for the Sociology of Law in Onati, Spain. 

Vanessa lives in Santa Barbara, and she and core members of her VCCF team  attended one of LFW’s Heart of Philanthropy retreats in 2016. Vanessa also meets  monthly with Ed and Ken and others focused on health of our region’s nonprofit sector as part of the Capacity Builders Collaborative.

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