Mission & Our Story

Our Mission

To champion equitable public education for students, families, and our community. Through grants, volunteers, and STEM programs, we center equity for the benefit of our students and the entire community.

Our Vision

A future where public schools support students of all identities and life experiences to thrive in school and in life.

Our Values

  • We strive for success for all students
  • We center equity and human dignity
  • We invest in innovation and collaboration

Our Theory of Change

In the spring of 2022, we worked with staff, board, Teaching & Learning Advisors & Community Advisors to build out this Theory of Change. It will focus and guide our work over the next 3-5 years.

Our History

The Berkeley Public Schools Fund (then Berkeley Public Education Foundation) is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization established in 1983, when Proposition 13 tax restructuring began impacting public schools. A group of Berkeley parents and community leaders, concerned about the diminishing resources for public schools, created the Berkeley Public Schools Fund.

Starting with educator grants, followed by volunteer programs, and most recently STEM programming, the Berkeley Public Schools Fund directs resources to areas of greatest need (“equity gaps”) in the Berkeley Unified School District (BUSD) and is a reliable resource for educators, BUSD, and the broader public school community.

The Schools Fund is entirely supported by contributions from individuals and businesses in the community. Funds are directed to support students through grants for educators, training and matching volunteers with educators, to run our STEM programming and for specific purposes designated by fiscal sponsorship arrangements.

Year to year, operating costs for the Schools Fund are 20-30 percent of our budget.


Nagat joined the Berkeley Public Schools Fund in 2024 and is the STEM Programs Manager. She and her children have attended Berkeley schools, and she has been active in the school community since 2014. Nagat has held roles as an instructional technician for afterschool programs and as an instructional assistant in special education, and has participated in Super Science Saturdays and the summer Maker Camp. Nagat is passionate about supporting Berkeley students, educators, and families, with a focus on STEM education and community engagement.

Nagat Alwasim

STEM Programs Manager

Greta joined the Berkeley Public Schools Fund in 2022. She has a background in anthropology, the arts and nonprofit consulting. Her approach to development is grounded in creating fulfilling pathways for folks to engage with and support something they deeply care about. She is committed to fostering a culture of accessibility and equity through her work, and is thrilled to play a role in supporting Berkeley students, educators, and families.

Greta Hadley

Director of Development

Jissel joined the Berkeley Public Schools Fund in 2021. Prior to joining, Jissel's work experience consisted of early literacy, service-learning, and volunteer program management through Bay Area nonprofits. Her approach to education is rooted in a social justice lens that critically examines institutions and strives to center equity, dignity, and respect for students and families.

Jissel Poblete

Program Manager—Classroom Volunteers

Angie joined the Schools Fund in February 2021, working in various roles related to STEM program development and finance management. She has been involved in Super Science Saturdays and summer Maker Camp since each program's inception. As of January 2024, she is the Schools Fund's Director of Finance & Operations. Angie has been working with the Berkeley school community since 2009.

Angie Won

Director of Finance & Operations, STEM Programs Supervisor

After serving for 5 years as the Schools Fund’s Director of Programs and Deputy Director, Duffy Ross is currently serving as the Interim Executive Director. Duffy has served as the Director of Education for Naturebridge and as a district-level instructional coach and a 4th grade teacher in the Oakland public schools. She was most recently a Peer Coach and Teacher Leader in the New Leaders Emerging Leaders Program.

Duffy Ross

Interim Executive Director

Sally joined the Schools Fund staff in August 2021, after volunteering with the organization through the pandemic distance learning. She’s found it to be a meaningful career pivot from 20+ years as an independent marketing research consultant. She is thrilled to utilize her organizing and communication skills in support of the Berkeley school community.

Sally McLaughlin

Program Manager—Schools Support Volunteers

Karina Cruz Rosales joined the Berkeley Public Schools Fund in 2024 and is the Communications Coordinator. With expertise in communications, design, and community engagement, she excels in creating compelling narratives that highlight organizational impact. Passionate about social justice and community storytelling, Karina's experience includes managing social media, developing marketing strategies, and leading impactful events. She is dedicated to fostering connections and making a positive difference in education through her creative work.

Karina Cruz Rosales

Communications Coordinator

Board of Directors

Lea Baechler-Brabo joined the Schools Fund Board in 2018 and has been active as a parent and professional in the Berkeley schools since coming to Berkeley in 1996. Lea is an advocate for equity in education and has used her role as a parent leader to be sure our schools welcome and listen to the diverse voices of our community. Lea is currently an education communications consultant. She is the proud mother of three boys who attended Berkeley schools; her twins are off in college and her youngest is now attending Berkeley High School.
Lea Baechler-Brabo

Board Member

José Luis was born in Guanajuato, México, the son of a farmworker and factory worker. He graduated from UC Berkeley becoming the first person in his family to graduate from college. After receiving his MBA from Georgetown, he spent over 20 years leading tech innovation in the automotive industry, but his first love was always politics and community organizing. Having had access to a world-class education, José Luis is committed to ensuring that opportunity is available to all our youth. To that end, he and his wife seeded a scholarship at UC Berkeley in the name of his parents. He is the proud parent of three BUSD students, has served on School Governance Councils, and worked in other ways to ensure that Berkeley’s public schools are the best they can be.
José Luis Bedolla

Board Member

Kevin Craddock II, is a native of Oakland, California, whose family has been rooted in the Bay Area for over 70 years. For his early studies, he attended James Logan High School (Union City, Ca) where he excelled as a hurdler in track and field, breaking over 20 age-group national records, the California high school state record and the U.S. High School National Record. Craddock attended the University of California, Los Angeles where he received his BA in History (2010) as well as multiple Conference titles and an NCAA All-American crown. After retiring from his professional track career, Craddock did two years of head coaching and teaching at Laney College of Oakland, and one year of head coaching and teaching at James Logan High School.

Craddock is currently a member of the Ebenezer Church of Berkeley where he has served as Lead Pastor for the past four years. He follows a lineage of pastoral-ship that includes his father, Pastor Kevin Craddock Sr., and traces back to his great grandfather, Pastor Felix Robinson, who planted the church in South Berkeley 67 years ago.

Kevin Craddock II

Board Member

Rachel Eisner is a non-profit management leader with over 25 years of experience. She currently serves as the Director of Development & Communications at Civicorps, a local conservation corps in West Oakland, providing workforce development and education for young adults. Committed to closing the opportunity gap in our school community, she has served as a parent advocate in roles on the BUSD PTA Council Board and the 2018-2019 Superintendent's Extended Learning Taskforce. A native of New York City, Rachel lives in Berkeley with her husband and three children.
Rachel Eisner

Board Member

Maya Glenn, a native Berkeley resident and Berkeley Public Schools Alum, joined the Berkeley Public Schools fund in 2019. She earned her B.A. from UC Berkeley and her Master’s in Public Health from Indiana University. While living in Indiana, Maya and her husband founded D.R.E.A.M. Alive Inc. a non profit organization, focusing on mentoring, education and career development for youth of Indianapolis. Maya has four children and has had the privilege to serve on the board of non profit organizations locally and abroad focusing on youth and education.
Maya Glenn

Board Member

Tasha Henneman is the current Chief of Policy & Government Affairs for PRC. Formerly, she served as the District Director for Senator Nancy Skinner and as the Education and Health Policy Advisor for former Mayor Tom Bates. While with the City of Berkeley, Tasha led the Kindergarten Readiness Workgroup as part of the 2020 Vision Initiative and was instrumental in the creation and implementation of the Berkeley Promise Program. She has a 6th grade son who attends Sylvia Mendez.
Tasha Henneman

Board Member

A former founding member of APT Life Sciences and Arda Technologies, Madan Kumar has managed engineering and technical teams on three continents. He thrives in dynamic, innovative environments like the one he helps guide at CloudBase. He’s also proud of his non-profit work on workforce development, education, water and sanitation. Madan finds happiness in family, cooking, eating, running and serving on the Berkeley Public Schools Fund Board.
Madan Kumar

Board Member

Bobby Lutzker joined the Schools Fund board in 2019. He is a lawyer who advises life sciences companies in licensing and collaboration transactions. He has also worked with small businesses, including helping Berkeleyside launch its $1 million direct public offering and later convert to a non-profit organization. His kids go to Sylvia Mendez Elementary, and he is grateful to the teachers and staff for the love and effort they give for families in the community.
Bobby Lutzker

Board Member

Yasi Nouri Massih was on the Schools Fund board from 2009-2016 and was the Board Chair. She attended Malcolm X, Willard, and Berkeley High before going to Cal for her undergraduate work. She has worked in the biotech industry and recently completed her Masters in Public Health from Johns Hopkins. She has three children, two of which are currently in Berkeley public schools. Yasi was introduced to the Schools Fund through former board members Judith Lubman and Amy Roth.
Yasi Nouri Massih

Board Member

Dennis Schrag is a Berkeley native and product of Berkeley Public Schools, K-12. After attaining a BA from the University of Wisconsin - Madison, he spent nearly 10 years as a broadcast journalist and then received his MBA from the University of Oregon. Dennis has been a non-profit development professional for more than 12 years working in higher education, children's health care, after school sports mentorship programs. He currently serves as the Senior Director of Individual Giving for Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area. Dennis has a daughter at Berkeley High School.
Dennis Schrag

Board Member

Julie Sinai has more than three decades in the non-profit and public sector working for social and economic justice, with a focus on equity, community well-being, access to education, and economic self-sufficiency. She launched Berkeley Unified School District’s School-Linked Programs in the late 90's, forging collaborative efforts to bring medical, dental, and behavioral health services into the schools. From 2003 to 2011, Julie was the policy advisor to the mayor of Berkeley. She also has served as the mayor’s chief of staff. She served on the Berkeley School Board as an appointed member from 2013 to 2018.

Julie also served as the Director of Government Relations for UC Berkeley and was a consultant with the California Community College System focusing on K-16 partnerships supporting career and college readiness. Since 2017, she has served as the Chief Strategy Officer for LifeLong Medical Care, an East Bay Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) dedicated to addressing health equity and access to medical, behavioral health and social services for low income and uninsured communities.

She and her husband Eric have two children, both proud graduates of Berkeley Public Schools.

Julie Sinai

Board Member

Terry Taplin is a 3rd generation Berkeleyan, a BHS graduate, a poet and Berkeley City Councilmember representing District 2, West and Southwest Berkeley. Terry was elected to the City Council in November 2020. A mobility and environmental justice activist, Terry has led on housing, green transportation, and fights for a climate resilient future. He is also on the “2 x 2” Committee made up of two Berkeley City Council members and two School Board members. As a West Berkeley native, Terry envisions a future where West Berkeley is at the center of an economically vibrant, innovative, and sustainable East Bay.
Terry Taplin

Board Member

Lynna Tsou is an adjunct professor at BATTI (Bay Area Teacher Training Institute) where she teaches and mentors educators and is a founding family member of a Mandarin-immersion school, Yu Ming Charter School. As a school psychologist & co-owner/general manager of The Coder School Berkeley, Lynna is passionate about supporting children & families to best meet their social-emotional and learning needs and is committed to educational equity & social justice. Lynna received her BA & PhD in educational psychology from UC Berkeley.
Lynna Tsou

Board Member

Founding Members

Mary Friedman was one of the early founders of the Berkeley Public Schools Fund (then Berkeley Public Education Foundation), which began in 1983 in response to Proposition 13 tax restructuring. She served as the organization’s volunteer Executive Director for 17 years, and she has been consistently on the Board ever since. She has also been a member of the Metro Board of the YMCA of the Central Bay Area since 2000. Her children and grandchildren have attended Berkeley schools.
Mary Friedman

Board Member

Allan ‘Chuck’ Miller is a local workplace civil rights lawyer who put three children through the BUSD. In 1983 when his daughter’s school, now known as Arts Magnet, was threatened with closure, he with others active on that issue founded the Schools Fund, and he has been active ever since. Chuck feels strongly that public education is a foundation stone of our democracy.
Allan ``Chuck`` Miller

Board Member

Alumni Board Advisors

John Caner is the CEO of the Downtown Berkeley Association. He has over twenty years of business, non-profit, and community development experience. John served for three and a half years as the Executive Director of Rebuilding Together Oakland where he significantly expanded programs and funding, and has served on the boards of several Berkeley organizations. John has a long-time interest in education, having served as a volunteer teacher’s assistant at Willard Middle School, volunteer instructor with the Presidential Classroom, and an entrepreneurship mentor with BUILD.org.
John Caner

Laurie Capitelli is a three-term Berkeley City Council member and has served on the Schools Fund Board since the 1980’s when his own children were in the Berkeley schools. Laurie was a high school history teacher before becoming a real estate agent in the 1970’s at Red Oak Realty, where he still works. Laurie is heading up efforts on the Berkeley City Council for universal access to pre-school and addressing substance abuse at Berkeley High.
Laurie Capitelli

Chris Hudson became involved with the Schools Fund as a spring luncheon sponsor in the early 2000’s. He is a partner in Hudson McDonald, a Berkeley-based real estate investment and management company. He attended UC Berkeley as an undergrad and has lived in Berkeley for more than 20 years. His two children currently attend Berkeley High School, and his wife is a physician at UC Berkeley. In addition to his work for the Schools Fund, Chris serves on the board of the Computer Technologies Program and is active in the Urban Land Institute.
Chris Hudson

Marisita Jarvis has been an active volunteer in the Berkeley Public Schools since her children attended Berkeley High. She was one of the founding members of the Academic Pathways Project at that school and is committed to work to improve education for all of our students. She thinks the Berkeley Public Schools Fund works very effectively to achieve that goal. She works for the Urban Land Institute in San Francisco, where she is the director of the UrbanPlan Program. She joined the Schools Fund Board in 2003 and is the Co-Vice Chair of Grants.
Marisita Jarvis

Ruben is the Director of Local Government and Community Relations at UC Berkeley. For much of his career, Rubén has worked with local community organizations and city government, as well as with state and federal policy makers. He was the Senior Director at Oakland-based PolicyLink, where he led efforts in research, public education, training, and technical assistance to strengthen community and civic participation in local decision-making and economic development and coordinated the Alliance for Boys and Men of Color.
Ruben Lizardo

Karen McKie served on the Schools Fund Board from 2000 to 2011, retiring as Board Chair. Karen was pivotal to community efforts to save music in the Berkeley public schools and served as the Parent Coordinator for the BHS Jazz Ensemble 1993-1999. Karen also helped to restore the high school’s orchestra and marching band. She partnered with the previously established Joffe Music Fund to create the Joffe/Boatwright Music Scholarships to support youth striving to excel in the BUSD music program. She was a founding member of both the Berkeley High School Development Group and the AP Program. Karen has been a Berkeley resident since 1971 and has two sons who attended BUSD public schools and graduated from Berkeley High School.
Karen McKie

Josh Miller was a member of the Berkeley Public Schools Fund Board from 2015 to 2021 and served as its Board Chair from 2019-2021. Josh works in the philanthropy sector as a professional grantmaker with expertise in grantmaking strategy, nonprofit capacity building, and funder collaboration. Josh received his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern and a BA from Brown University. Josh currently has two children in the Berkeley Public Schools.
Josh Miller

Locke Schultz Jaeger joined the Schools Fund Board in 2014 and is the Development Chair. Locke is a strong (some say fierce) advocate of Berkeley Public schools. She attended Berkeley schools and now has three children getting a Berkeley school education as well. As a parent, Locke is an active participant in the PTA, the classroom, and in the community. Locke has seen the value of the support of the Berkeley Public School Fund in the classrooms, schools, and the lives of the students and is delighted to join her efforts with so many other Berkeley School supporters to continue to strengthen the Schools Fund.
Locke Schultz Jaeger

Abby Smith joined the Schools Fund Board in 2015 and is Board Chair. Abby is a Principal in Bain’s San Francisco office, and she is the leader in Bain’s North America Education Practice working primarily with California District leaders and several leading charter school organizations. She has also spent time working with UC Berkeley on their transformation with a focus on organizational design. She serves on the Tuck Annual Giving Advisory Board and is the Head Agent for her Dartmouth class. She is a graduate of the Berkeley Public Schools and a former Berkeley High math teacher. Abby lives in Berkeley and has four young children.
Abby Smith

Marsha Weintraub has been a community member of the Schools Fund Grants Committee since 2009. She taught in the West Contra Costa School District for 34 years as an elementary school teacher, a Title I resource teacher, and a Resource Specialist. A Berkeley resident for most of her adult life, she wants to support educators in their efforts to create a high quality, 21st century education for Berkeley Public School students.
Marsha Weintraub

Alumni Board Advisors

Margaret Corrigan
Calvin Eng
Carol Olson

Community Partners

Annual Reports

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2020 Bonar Street, Suite 130
Berkeley, CA 94702

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Berkeley, CA 94702

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