Our Team

Our Team

To contact a member of our staff, click here to send an email.

President’s Office

The President’s Office sets organizational vision, manages executive staff, and engages with system leaders and state policymakers to share our learning and advocate for policies that support postsecondary guidance and intersegmental data sharing to benefit students and educators.

Tessa Carmen De Roy

Tessa Carmen De Roy
President
Email the President

Tessa Carmen De Roy is the founder and president of the California College Guidance Initiative (CCGI), overseeing the organization’s strategy, management, financials, and system-level partnerships. Prior to founding CCGI, she spent a decade working to promote college access and success for first-generation, college-bound students in Los Angeles County. Her participation in the development of the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, which simplifies the financial aid application process for students and families by directly importing tax information into their FAFSA, led to a focus on how data and technology could be used to lower academic and vocational barriers for students. Tess earned her Doctor of Education from the University of California, Los Angeles, where she focused on data-supported regional efforts to articulate high school and college coursework.

Maya Ramos Clayton

Maya Ramos Clayton
Chief of Staff

Maya Ramos Clayton serves as Chief of Staff, overseeing the day-to-day operations of the CCGI team. She is a key strategic advisor to CCGI’s President and other organizational leaders, with a primary focus on ensuring the team’s work aligns with CCGI’s organizational values and objectives, the needs of practitioners and students, and the organization’s expansion deliverables. Maya is responsible for cross-team alignment and leads CCGI’s talent management and team development program. Externally, Maya represents CCGI in state-level and regional conversations that have implications for organizational strategy. Before becoming Chief of Staff, Maya served in a number of roles at CCGI, most recently as Vice President of District Partnerships. Prior to CCGI, she worked for a national college access and youth leadership development program. She earned her M.S. from New York University and B.A. from Smith College.

Leigh Ranck

Leigh S. Ranck
Chief Technology Officer

Leigh S. Ranck serves as CCGI’s Chief Technology Officer, spearheading the vision for CCGI’s web-based college and career planning platform for all California 6th-12th grade students and overseeing CCGI’s infrastructure and analytics. Before transitioning into the role of Chief Technology Officer, Leigh served in a number of roles at CCGI, most recently as Vice President of CaliforniaColleges.edu. Prior to joining CCGI, Leigh worked for the MacArthur Foundation’s Connected Learning Alliance, where she spent several years using web applications and communications tools to increase participatory, interest-driven learning that’s connected to educational, civic, and career opportunities for students across the U.S. Leigh previously worked for a nonprofit and a global health firm in New York City with the aim of translating scientific discoveries into affordable and accessible global health solutions. Leigh earned her bachelor’s degree from New York University.

Heather Allen

Heather Allen
Chief Programs Officer

Heather Allen serves as CCGI’s Chief Programs Officer, driving strategy for implementation of CaliforniaColleges.edu and how it can be used by K-12 practitioners and higher education segments to smooth the path to college and opportunity for students throughout our state. She spent more than 15 years working in the Fresno Unified School District in a variety of site and district leadership roles. She began her career as a School Counselor and later became a high school Vice Principal. At the district level, she worked in multiple departments that included IT, School Leadership and College & Career Readiness. She served as the Executive Officer of the Instructional Division before joining CCGI. Heather earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Stanford University and her Master of Science in Counseling from California State University, Fresno.

David John Silva

David John Silva
Executive Assistant

As executive assistant, David John Silva assists the President’s Team in daily business activities, with a special emphasis on leadership support. Prior to joining CCGI, he garnered more than 20 years of experience in office management and administrative assistance over dynamic, virtually based teams. David attended CSU Sacramento with focus on music and theatre arts.

Strategic Impact

The Strategic Impact team is responsible for strengthening internal data analysis processes and strategy as well as supporting the alignment of organizational goals and outcomes with program operations.

Alison Fedyna Villa

Alison Fedyna Villa
Director of Strategic Impact

Alison Fedyna Villa serves as the Director of Strategic Impact, working across teams at CCGI to strengthen internal data analysis processes and strategy as well as support the alignment of organizational goals and outcomes with program operations. She is a social impact leader dedicated to disrupting inequitable systems and creating conditions where all students have the opportunity to thrive. Alison brings more than 12 years of experience in the nonprofit and education sectors, leveraging her program evaluation, facilitation and training, and instructional design expertise. Most recently, Alison served as the Assistant Director of Graduate Student Teaching and Learning at UCLA and California Program Director with America Needs You. She earned her Master of Arts in Applied Psychology from New York University, and both her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and her Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Toledo.

Mitzi Bandera

Mitzi Bandera
Data Analyst, Data & Analytics Infrastructure

As data analyst for data analytics and infrastructure, Mitzi Bandera supports CCGI’s analytical strategies and infrastructure optimization, as well as collaborating across the organization to produce analytical reports, dashboards, and data-driven insights. Before joining CCGI, Mitzi worked in higher education and student affairs for seven years, including as an international student advisor at UCLA. Mitzi earned her B.A. in psychology from UCSC and is currently pursuing an associate’s degree in computer science from Santa Monica College.

Communications & Community Engagement

The Communications & Community Engagement Teams are responsible for CCGI’s outreach and engagement efforts. They focus on developing tools, messages, relationships, and partnerships to strengthen our connections with our stakeholders, expand their engagement with our work, and advance our efforts to make higher education more equitable and accessible for all California students.

Lenine Umali
Director, Communications and Community Engagement

As director of communications and community engagement, Lenine Umali oversees both CCGI’s outreach efforts and external communications, helping develop new avenues to reach critical audiences and strengthen relationships with education- and equity-focused institutions statewide. Prior to joining CCGI, Lenine spent much of her career in public service, serving as a policy, communications, and strategic advisor to policymakers and public-serving institutions. She has served as director for a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and a senior member of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors, as well as various non-profit organizations throughout the San Francisco Bay area. Lenine is a first-generation Filipina immigrant and Bay Area native. She earned her bachelor’s degree from U.C. Berkeley and her M.B.A. from the University of Southern California.

Community Engagement

The Community Engagement Team is responsible for building CCGI’s understanding of and connections to the communities we serve across California. They focus on developing relationships and building partnerships to increase engagement with CCGI tools and services and to advance the needs of students, families, and educators.

Darice Ingram
Deputy Director, Community Engagement

Darice Ingram serves as deputy director of community engagement, driving efforts to close equity gaps by building partnerships with California communities and ensuring our work is centered on the needs and experiences of students, families, and educators. Before joining CCGI, she spent 13 years working for California State University, East Bay, and she co-founded a nonprofit dedicated to connecting K-12 school districts, community, parents, businesses, and students to resources that increased college access, retention, and graduation rates of underserved students. Darice earned her bachelor’s degree in business management and administration from University of Phoenix and her Master of Public Administration from California State University, East Bay.

Joanna Vazquez Zelaya
Deputy Director, Community Engagement

Joanna Zelaya serves as deputy director of community engagement, driving efforts to close equity gaps by building partnerships with California communities and ensuring our work is centered on the needs and experiences of students, families, and educators.  Prior to joining CCGI, she worked with Oakland Unified School District, where she designed and managed the implementation of local policy that generated supplemental revenue to re-design traditional high schools into Linked Learning career academies. Back in her home of Southern California, she led and contributed to advocacy efforts to improve the educational outcomes and experiences for Latino/a students in Los Angeles. Joanna earned her M.P.A. from UC Berkeley’s Goldman School of Public Policy and her B.A. from UCLA.

Communications

The Communications Team is responsible for equipping organizational staff with the language and materials they need to effectively talk about the work the CCGI does. The team’s work includes producing print and digital collateral, messaging, social media, presentations, as well as any and all interaction with the media.

Alejandro Guzman
Deputy Director, Communications

Alejandro Guzman serves as deputy director of communications, leading the strategy for all educator-facing communications. Most recently, Alejandro served as public relations manager for Los Angeles Mission College, where he led marketing and communications efforts to help the college recover its pre-pandemic enrollment. Alejandro has more than 17 years of experience in audience identification, developing multimedia content for diverse audiences, and delivering targeted messaging through integrated campaigns. He has won multiple marketing and communications awards throughout his career and has achieved great success through the use of owned, paid, and earned media. Alejandro earned his bachelor’s degree in Journalism from CSU Northridge and his master’s degree in Communications Management from the University of Southern California.

Alessandra Fadeff
Manager, Communications

Alessandra Fadeff serves as communications manager, working to develop print and digital collateral, social media, and other content to support educator-facing and internal communications. Alessandra is also responsible for ensuring the alignment and organization of CCGI’s communications assets. Before joining CCGI, she worked to develop admissions, outreach, and communications strategies for UC Berkeley’s undergraduate business program. Alessandra earned her bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies from Seattle University in Seattle, WA.

Ana Castillo
Student Voice Coordinator, Communications

Ana Castillo serves as the student voice coordinator and supports the Communications Team with producing content featuring first-generation high school students and recent high school graduates. She helps recruit students who use CaliforniaColleges.edu for college and career planning, and she ensures their voices are represented in CCGI’s outreach presentations to parents, educators, and other stakeholders. Before CCGI, Ana engaged in volunteer work for her community, helping her city during the summer and fellow youth in after-school programs. She is a recent high school graduate and is the first in her family to attend college.

CaliforniaColleges.edu

The CaliforniaColleges.edu Team is responsible for the development, maintenance, and iteration of CaliforniaColleges.edu, the State of California’s college and career planning platform, including content and collateral to effectively engage educators, students, and families.

Kee Chang

Kee Chang
Director, CaliforniaColleges.edu Integrations

Kee Chang serves as the director of CaliforniaColleges.edu integrations, overseeing transcript-related functionalities as well as college and financial aid application integrations on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Prior to joining CCGI, he worked for Cerritos College, CSU Long Beach, the CSU Chancellor’s Office, CSU Northridge, and CSU Los Angeles, focusing on student information systems and applications supporting student success. Kee holds a B.A. from UC Irvine, and an M.A. from CSU Long Beach.

Laurel Sunderman

Laurel Sunderman
Director, CaliforniaColleges.edu Student Experience

As Director, CaliforniaColleges.edu Student Experience, Laurel Sunderman leads the team that develops and iterates self-led lessons, college and career planning tools, and supplemental content on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Laurel ensures that CaliforniaColleges.edu meets the unique needs of California students, while aligning with current trends in K-12 and higher education counseling, and fulfilling the goals laid out by the state of California. Before joining CCGI, Laurel spent more than 15 years working for Sacramento nonprofit and higher education institutions. She holds a B.A. and M.A. in English from California State University, Sacramento, where she also earned certificates in Teaching College Composition and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL).

Sue Candelier
Director, CaliforniaColleges.edu User Experience

Sue Candelier serves as the director of user experience (UX) on the CaliforniaColleges.edu team. She leads the UX team in providing a seamless platform experience to support college and career planning for California’s 6th-12th grade students. Sue has worked in tech for the last 8 years, including a design agency, telehealth startup, and most recently a government consultancy, where she led the design of human-centered digital solutions for clients at the Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs. Prior to tech, Sue spent 11 years in nonprofit work focused on increasing access to education and the arts. Sue earned her bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and Art History/Visual Arts from Occidental College.

Benjamin Baird

Ben Baird
Engineer, CaliforniaColleges.edu Integrations

As engineer for CaliforniaColleges.edu integrations, Ben Baird is responsible for the externally-facing application integrations between CaliforniaColleges.edu and the California Community Colleges, California State University, University of California, and FAFSA/California Dream Act applications, as well as the platform’s college eligibility tools. Prior to joining CCGI, he worked for the Los Rios Community College District. Ben holds a BA from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and an MS from Drexel University.

Frances Apalategui

Frances Apalategui
Deputy Director, CaliforniaColleges.edu Educator Experience

As deputy director of the CaliforniaColleges.edu Educator Experience, Frances Apalategui guides and develops educator-focused enhancements to the site and leads the team’s support efforts to meet user needs through thoughtful data collection. Before joining CCGI, she facilitated first-year bridge programs, led support services, and taught freshman writing at California State University, San Bernardino, Crafton Hills College, Copper Mountain College, and the University of Redlands. Frances earned her Master of Arts degree in rhetoric and composition from California State University, San Bernardino and continues to serve her alma mater through student presentations and on writing panels.

Janette Nikolakopoulos

Janette Nikolakopoulos
Deputy Director, CaliforniaColleges.edu Student Experience

As deputy director of the CaliforniaColleges.edu Student Experience, Janette Nikolakopoulos guides and develops student-focused enhancements for CCGI’s college and career planning platform. Informed by stakeholder feedback, research, and best practices, Janette manages continual improvements to the platform, ensuring its efficacy and ease-of-use. Before joining CCGI, Janette spent almost a decade with edtech companies, primarily managing cross-functional product teams to publish online courses, resources, and tools. Janette earned her B.S. from Northwestern University and her M.A. from St. Mary’s College of California.

Maribel Chonhim

Maribel Chonhim
Senior Manager, CaliforniaColleges.edu User Research

As Senior Manager of CaliforniaColleges.edu User Research, Maribel Chonhim supports users and tests enhancements to ensure optimal operations and communicates proactive and strategic updates on platform functionality. Before joining CCGI, she worked as a student services coordinator at a private college planning agency in the San Fernando Valley and as a substitute teacher in the San Gabriel Valley. Maribel earned her M.A. in educational counseling along with her PPS credential from Azusa Pacific University and her B.S. in sociology from the University of La Verne.

Marissa Chávez
Senior Manager, CaliforniaColleges.edu Content

Marissa Chávez serves as Senior Manager, CaliforniaColleges.edu Content, and is responsible for assisting in the development of college and career curricula. Previously they worked in admissions for a selective university and developed transitions curriculum at various universities. Marissa is a proud product of the Central Valley and a first-generation student who holds a bachelor’s from UC Davis and master’s in Higher Education Counseling and Student Affairs from California Polytechnic State University.

Jacquelyn Mendieta
Manager, CaliforniaColleges.edu Educator Experience

Jacquelyn Mendieta serves as Manager, CaliforniaColleges.edu Educator Experience, enhancing the resources and support for educators utilizing the platform. Prior to joining CCGI, she worked for 16 years at the California State University, Los Angeles, recruiting students to the university, providing educational resources and support to students, educators and community members, and coordinated all recruitment events and conferences such as Preview Week for admitted students. As a strong supporter of higher education, she also served as advisor to several student organizations at the university. Jacquelyn earned both her bachelor’s degree in Psychology and her master’s degree in Child Development from the California State University, Los Angeles.

Tori Zavala
Manager, CaliforniaColleges.edu Student Experience

Tori Zavala serves as Manager, CaliforniaColleges.edu Student Experience, and works with the CaliforniaColleges.edu team to enhance new features and resources that support students who use and interact with the platform. Prior to joining CCGI, she worked in analytics and research for a consulting firm. Tori is a proud first-generation college graduate. She holds a bachelor’s in Psychology from California State University, Channel Islands, and a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Oregon State University.

Lillie Apostolos

Lillie Apostolos
Manager, CaliforniaColleges.edu Content

Lillie Apostolos serves as manager for CaliforniaColleges.edu content, assisting with content research and development for CaliforniaColleges.edu. Prior to joining CCGI, she worked as a writer and English instructor. Lillie holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in English from California State University, Sacramento.

Data & Analytics Infrastructure

The Data & Analytics Infrastructure Team oversees all of CCGI’s internal cloud-based data analytics and engineering infrastructure and technical strategy. Their work includes data analytics, data warehousing, and data engineering projects, ensuring alignment with the organization’s mission and goals.

Saloman Davila

Salomón Dávila
Director, Cloud Infrastructure

Salomón Dávila serves as director of cloud infrastructure, developing scalable statewide data-engineering tools and pipelines and supporting the organization’s data analytics and cloud infrastructure. Before joining CCGI, he worked for the California Community College system as faculty, administrator, and consultant, where he spent two decades developing community college programs across 40 colleges, connecting high school to careers in advanced manufacturing, cloud computing, and data science. Salomón earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and he earned his master’s degree in teaching and curriculum from Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Technical Assistance and User Support & Training

The Technical Assistance and User Support & Training team are responsible for supporting educators in their use of CaliforniaColleges.edu with 6th-12th grade students. The Technical Assistance team focuses its efforts on improving the quality of transcript data by facilitating “a-g” course clean-up with K-12 districts that receive technical assistance from CCGI. The User Support & Training team provides individual user support, as well as year-round virtual training to educators integrating CaliforniaColleges.edu into their college and career work.

Joanne Do 
Senior Director, Technical Assistance and User Support & Training

Joanne Do serves as senior director of Technical Assistance and user support & training, driving the strategic vision for CCGI’s work with K-12 districts and individual educators who use CaliforniaColleges.edu. She also leads talent development and coaching efforts to build the capacity of the Technical Assistance and User Support & Training Teams. Before joining CCGI, Joanne worked at College Access Plan, where she led the organization through precipitous growth and helped to shape the organization’s culture. She has also served as an admissions reader for UC Berkeley. In 2018, she was recognized as an Inspiring Leader by the Center for Nonprofit Management. Joanne earned her B.A. in American literature and culture from UCLA, her M.A. in English from Loyola Marymount University, and her Ed.D. from UCLA.

Technical Assistance

The Technical Assistance Team works directly with K-12 districts to monitor and improve the quality of transcript data and address issues related to CaliforniaColleges.edu’s data-informed functionality.

Angelina Chacon Garcia

Angelina Chacon-Garcia
Director, Technical Assistance

As director of Technical Assistance, Angelina Chacon-Garcia leads CCGI’s efforts to support K-12 districts in improving the accuracy of transcript data and addressing issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Before joining CCGI, she managed data and assessments for three California K-12 charter schools, using data systems and tools to address data discrepancies in Student Information Systems and supporting operational and accountability reporting. Angelina holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and religious studies from the University of California, Davis, and she earned her master’s degree in education with an emphasis on social justice and equity from San Francisco State University.

Patricia Zarco

Patricia Zarco
Director, Technical Assistance

As director of Technical Assistance, Patty Zarco leads the team responsible for supporting K-12 districts in improving the accuracy of transcript data and addressing issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Before joining CCGI, she spent 13 years as a project director with UC Merced, Center for Educational Partnerships, where she oversaw federal, state, and privately funded college-access programs in the Central Valley. Patty is dedicated to serving the Central Valley, supporting her community as an organizer and Mistress of Ceremonies for the Young Women’s Conference, an annual Livingston-based leadership conference. She serves on the advisory board for Central Valley Scholars, and her likeness was used for a mural in the city of Merced celebrating the diversity of the Central Valley. Patty earned her bachelor’s degree in communication studies from California State University, Stanislaus and her master’s degree in education from Fresno Pacific University.

Sara Kong

Sara Kong
Deputy Director, Technical Assistance

Sara Kong serves as as deputy director of Technical Assistance,  leading on the day-to-day operations of a team responsible for addressing issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu and supporting K-12 districts in improving the accuracy of transcript data. Before joining CCGI, Sara worked for the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District and was part of the Orange County Regional Collaborative group of Career Counseling Coordinators, which increased the awareness and participation in Career Technical Education (CTE) and dual enrollment. She earned her master’s degree in school counseling from Chapman University and her bachelor’s degree in child and adolescent development from California State University, Fullerton, where she graduated summa cum laude in the University Honors Program.

Tamara Vaughan

Tamara Vaughan
Deputy Director, Technical Assistance

Tamara Vaughan serves as deputy director of Technical Assistance, supporting K-12 districts in uploading their files to CaliforniaColleges.edu and advising the CCGI’s Technical Assistance team in their work to improve the accuracy of K-12 transcript data. Before joining CCGI she served as the database systems analyst for a public K-12 district, where she was charged with CALPADS data reporting, SIS database management, and data validation. Prior to that, she spent seven years in various roles in higher education, where she was responsible for state and federal data validation and submission as well as managing student information systems. Additionally, she served on several retention working groups and data-user and product-implementation teams.

Daniel Marker

Daniel Marker
Senior Manager, Technical Assistance

As Technical Assistance senior manager, Daniel Marker serves as a key collaborator and driver of CCGI’s work with K-12 districts, driving implementation of efforts to improve the accuracy of transcript data and address issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Before joining CCGI, he worked for the California State University, Stanislaus, where he served students in the transition to college through academic preparation initiatives and student-centered support. He also serves as a Stan Futures Lead within the Cradle to Career, Stanislaus Partnership. Daniel earned his master’s degree at the University of Toronto, Wycliffe College and is currently in progress with his Doctor of Education at California State University, Stanislaus.

Abigail Bailey

Abigail Bailey 
Manager, Technical Assistance

As Technical Assistance Manager, Abigail Bailey supports K-12 districts in improving the accuracy of transcript data and addressing issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Abigail has worked in K-12 and higher education for the past 15 years. Within that time, she spent 10 years in a large school district focused on increasing access to higher education by supporting and championing data systems aimed at equity and transparency. She initiated new community partnerships aimed at ensuring the accuracy of district-wide programs, thus increasing opportunities for all students in the areas of financial aid and the college application process. She earned her Masters in Public Administration from California State University, East Bay and her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Salvador Dorado

Salvador Garcia Dorado
Manager, Technical Assistance

Salvador Garcia Dorado serves as Technical Assistance manager, supporting K-12 districts in improving the accuracy of transcript data and addressing issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Prior to joining CCGI, he served as a high school parent- and community-engagement specialist and as a university recruiter in Los Angeles. Salvador holds a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from Pomona College and earned both a master’s degree in Latin American studies and a post-baccalaureate certificate in women’s, gender, and sexuality studies from California State University, Los Angeles.

Ying Lo Khang

Ying Lo-Khang
Manager, Technical Assistance

As Technical Assistance manager, Ying Lo-Khang supports K-12 districts in improving the accuracy of transcript data and addressing issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Before joining CCGI, she worked for Breakthrough Sacramento, where she supported underserved students and families in college and career planning. Ying earned her bachelor’s degree in social work from the University of California, Berkeley and her Master of Social Work from Columbia University.

Amy Martinez Aguilar
Manager, Technical Assistance

As Technical Assistance manager, Amy Martinez supports K-12 districts in improving the accuracy of transcript data and addressing issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Before joining CCGI, she worked for UC Merced’s Center for Educational Partnerships, where she assisted underserved students and families with college and career planning and collaborated across sectors to propose and implement academic-preparation programming. Amy earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of California, Merced, and she earned her master’s degree in school counseling from Fresno Pacific University.

Cheyenne Zamora 
Manager, Technical Assistance

As Technical Assistance manager, Cheyenne Zamora supports K-12 districts across the state in improving the accuracy of transcript data and addressing issues affecting the data-informed functionality on CaliforniaColleges.edu. Before joining CCGI, she worked as a college and career technician for the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District, supporting high school students in exploring postsecondary options and navigating the college application processes. Cheyenne is currently enrolled at California State University, Sacramento, pursuing her bachelor’s degree in psychology.

Edwin Cortez

Edwin Cortez
Data Analyst, Technical Assistance

Edwin Cortez serves as data analyst, Technical Assistance, supporting K-12 districts in uploading their files to CaliforniaColleges.edu and advising CCGI’s Technical Assistance team in their work to improve the accuracy of K-12 transcript data. Prior to joining CCGI, Edwin spent years working for a higher education institution in the areas of financial aid advising and scholarships data operations. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science with a minor in statistics and a data analytics certificate from Google.

Freddie Zenteno

Freddie Zenteno
Data Analyst, Technical Assistance

Freddie Zenteno serves as data analyst, Technical Assistance, supporting K-12 districts in uploading their files to CaliforniaColleges.edu and advises CCGI’s Technical Assistance team in their work to improve the accuracy of K-12 transcript data. Before joining CCGI, he spent eight years working for higher education institutions, specializing in accreditation, compliance, project management, data analytics and reporting, institutional research, and business intelligence. Freddie earned his Bachelor of Science in informatics from the University of California, Irvine, and is currently pursuing his Master of Science in information technology with a concentration in data science from California State University, Fullerton.

Linda Xayavong
Data Analyst, Technical Assistance

Linda Xayavong serves as data analyst, Technical Assistance, supporting K-12 districts in uploading their files to CaliforniaColleges.edu and advises CCGI’s Technical Assistance team in their work to improve the accuracy of K-12 transcript data. Before joining CCGI, Linda spent nearly ten years working in the area of research and evaluation at Elk Grove Unified School District where she assisted in the planning and coordinating activities related to state and district assessment programs. She attended San Diego State University with a focus on Chemistry.

User Support & Training

The User-Support & Training Team provides individualized support and virtual training to educators, providing resources, tools, and support to help integrate CaliforniaColleges.edu’s planning and application tools into guidance interventions and instructional time.

Lisa Andrews

Lisa Andrews-Swartzlander
Director, Training

As director of training, Lisa Andrews leads CCGI’s efforts to provide high-quality service to educators who use CaliforniaColleges.edu through year-round training. Prior to joining CCGI, she served as a professional school counselor with the Pomona Unified School District. Currently, she serves as adjunct faculty at the University of La Verne’s La Fetra School of Educational Counseling, as an independent college counselor at Top College Consultants, and also as a reviewer for the Recognized ASCA Model Program for the American School Counselor Association. Lisa earned her Bachelor of Arts in communicative disorders from the University of Redlands. She holds a Master of Social Work from the University of Southern California, a Master of Arts in educational leadership from Concordia University, and a Master of Arts in school counseling from the University of La Verne.

Kristina Tyler

Kristina Tyler
Director, User Support

As director of user support, Kristina Tyler leads the the team responsible for providing high-quality service to educators who use CaliforniaColleges.edu through individual user support. Prior to joining CCGI, she supported students in the classroom by teaching 5th grade English Language Learners in Rhode Island and by serving as education programs coordinator for an after-school program in Orange County. Kristina earned her M.A. in urban education policy from Brown University.

Sarah Yanagi
Deputy Director, User Support

As deputy director of user support, Sarah Yanagi provides high-quality service to educators who use CaliforniaColleges.edu through individual user support. Prior to joining CCGI, Sarah worked as an elementary school and secondary educational Speech Language Pathologist for Elk Grove Unified School District and as a clinical supervisor for graduate students pursing a career as a educational Speech Language Pathologist. She worked avidly with middle school students as they learned strategies for self-advocacy and classroom learning on their journey to choosing a college and career path. Sarah received both her B.S. and M.S. in Communication Sciences and Disorders from CSU Sacramento.

Katherine Zevallos Pastor

Katherine Zevallos Pastor
Senior Manger, User Support & Training

As user support and training senior manager, Kat Zevallos Pastor serves as a key collaborator and driver of CCGI’s work to help educators successfully utilize CaliforniaColleges.edu’s planning and application tools through both high-quality, individualized support to educators and year-round virtual training. Before joining CCGI, Kat served as the inaugural Dream Center coordinator at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, where she established foundational values of activism, community, education, and empowerment for the success of Undocumented students. Kat earned her M.S in college counseling and student development from Azusa Pacific University. She is an active member of and mentor for the Undocuprofessionals Network.

Andrew Brown

Andrew Brown
Manager, User Support & Training

As user support & training manager, Andrew Brown promotes successful utilization of CaliforniaColleges.edu planning and application tools among educators via high-quality, individualized support and year-round virtual training. Prior to joining CCGI, he was a part-time collections assistant in the vertebrate paleontology department of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles. He has also worked as a barista for several third-wave coffee establishments. Andrew earned his bachelor’s degree in anthropology at California State University, Northridge.

Dedreiana Elliott

Dedreiana Elliott
Manager, User Support & Training

As user support & training manager, Dedreiana Elliott promotes successful utilization of CaliforniaColleges.edu planning and application tools among educators via high-quality, individualized support and year-round virtual training. Before joining the team at CCGI, she served as an admissions officer for UC San Diego. In addition to working in the UC system, Dedreiana also has experience working with various high schools, California Community Colleges, and the CSU system. She earned her bachelor’s degree in communication from California State University, Channel Islands.

Anna Lorena Garcia

Anna Lorena Garcia
Manager, User Support & Training

As user support & training manager, Anna Lorena Garcia promotes educators’ successful utilization of CaliforniaColleges.edu planning and application tools through high-quality, individualized support to educators and year-round virtual training. Before joining CCGI, she worked for the University of California Office of the President and the UC Merced Center for Educational Partnerships, where she spent more than a decade working with educators, students, and families supporting college and career planning. Anna Lorena earned her bachelor’s degree in liberal studies from the University of LaVerne.

Olivia Lopes

Olivia Lopes
Manger, User Support & Training

As user support & training manager, Olivia Lopes promotes educators’ successful utilization of CaliforniaColleges.edu planning and application tools through high-quality, individualized support to educators and year-round virtual training. Before joining CCGI, she worked for Reading Partners on their Community Engagement team, aiming to support students in literacy. Olivia’s passion for social justice and educational equity drives her work every day. She earned her bachelor’s degree in sociology at Regis University.

Naib Tapia

Naib Tapia
Manager, User Support

As a User Support Manager resolving help tickets related to the utilization of CaliforniaCollege.edu, Naib Tapia will also be streamlining the college planning and application process for students with step-by-step resources and tools as needed. Born in Los Angeles and raised there until she was 12, one winter her family decided to move to the Napa Valley and she has been in Northern California ever since. For the past five years, Tapia has been able to support and assist with academic advising for low-income, first-generation students. In addition, she has been able to streamline the college-going process for students, families and educators. She received her Master of Science in Family and Human Development from Arizona State University and her Bachelors of Arts in Criminology and Criminal Justice from Sonoma State University.

Business Operations

The Business Operations team ensures the alignment of CCGI’s technology platforms, implementation strategies, and operational protocols. The team manages all CRM (Salesforce) data for the organization and facilitates team effectiveness across our statewide, virtual workplace.

Sheri Hiebert

Sheri Hiebert
Senior Manager, Business Operations

As business operations senior manager, Sheri Hiebert is responsible for contract management and execution of agreements with K-12 school districts, higher education institutions, third-party nonprofit organizations, and vendor contracts across the state, as well as with maintaining contract protocols and management of specialized projects. Prior to joining CCGI, Sheri worked for a Fortune 500 global workforce solution firm, where she held several management roles, including providing project management supporting both new and existing clients with workforce contracts across North America. Sheri brings over 17 years of experience in business operations, project management, and strategic implementation. She attended Wichita State University with a focus on business administration and management.

Ruchita Bhatia

Ruchita Bhatia
Salesforce Administrator

Ruchita Bhatia serves as CCGI’s primary Salesforce administrator, keeping the organization’s Salesforce platform up-to-date with new releases, automating complex business processes, providing enhancements, collaborating with team members to define and document development requirements, training end-users on new customizations, and managing external vendors. Before joining CCGI, she worked as a software engineer and developed web and Windows applications for various clients. Ruchita also volunteers her time as a Salesforce administrator/developer with the Morning Star Foundation. She earned her master’s degree in information technology from DAVV (India).

Jonny Jayne

Jonny Jayne
Specialist, Business Operations

As business operations specialist, Jonny Jayne supports the management of the operations, tools, and processes that underlie CCGI’s work. Jonny earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from CSU Channel Islands.

Harvey Yung

Harvey Yung
Specialist, Business Operations

Harvey Yung serves as business operations specialist, supporting the management of Salesforce and other CCGI tools, infrastructure, and processes. Before joining CCGI, Harvey worked as a safety coordinator at a major biotech company, ensuring all policies and procedures were followed. He was also an EMT in San Francisco, assisting people in their time of need. Harvey earned his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from San Francisco State University.