About CI Foundation
The CSU Channel Islands Foundation was established for the purpose of encouraging and accepting private gifts to the University. State funds alone cannot provide for all the costs associated with providing the finest education possible to our students.
The mission of the CSU Channel Islands Foundation is to support the University's strategic agenda and institutional mission. The Foundation is the catalyst and conduit through which gifts and endowment income flow to provide immediate and long-term support of the University. The Foundation will also assist the University by creating strong relationships with alumni/ae, friends, and partners in the state of California who seek to use their goodwill and influence for the strengthening of CI's mission and goals.
Board of Directors
George Leis, ChairPrivate Banking National Sales Manager
Mr. Leis was recently promoted to Private Banking National Sales Manager for Union Bank after becoming Regional President of Union Bank’s Central Coast Region following the acquisition of Santa Barbara Bank & Trust (SBB&T) in December 2012. He previously was President & CEO of Pacific Capital Bancorp (PCBC), a $7 billion in assets community bank holding company that included SBB&T. PCBC had over 1,000 employees and 47 branches.
John Notter, Vice ChairProprietor
Westlake Village Inn
Mr. Notter is a member of the Board of Directors of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation and is Chairman of the Board of the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research. Mr. Notter was instrumental in the development of the city of Westlake Village and is the owner of Westlake Village Inn, Bogies, and Mediterraneo Restaurant.
Neil Paton, SecretaryAerospace Consultant
Fellow, National Academy of Engineering
Dr. Paton has led Space Shuttle Main Engine incident investigation and return-to-flight activities as well as an investigative team created for the purpose of correcting problems with the original Space Shuttle TPS tile system. He has received the Rockwell Engineer of the Year, and Co-authored the “Evaluation of the National Aerospace Initiative.”
Edward BirchChairman of the Board
Pacific Capital Bancorp
Dr. Birch has more than 35 years’ experience in the field of management. Named Vice Chancellor Emeritus of the University of California at Santa Barbara, he also served as Executive Vice President at Westmont College and at Michigan State University. He served as Vice President for the highly successful 1984 U.S. Olympic Games in Los Angeles.
Hugh CassarPresident and CEO
Mr. Cassar is currently the Honorary Consulate of Malta. He along with his wife, Keets, focus their philanthropic efforts on the local community, donating along with becoming personally involved in charities such as Casa Pacifica, The Wellness Community, and The Alliance for the Arts.
Fashion Forms First
Ms. Deal Created Fashion Forms in 1993, which has become the nation’s leader in women’s intimate apparel. Ms. Deal is also the Executive Publisher of Ventura LIFE Magazine, and is an active and generous philanthropist in her own community of Ventura.
Pacific Coast Business Times
Mr. Dubroff is founder and majority owner of Pacific Coast Business Times, the award-winning, weekly business journal for Santa Barbara, Ventura and San Luis Obispo Counties in coastal California.
Ferguson, Case, Orr, Patterson, LLP
Mr. England’s practice emphasizes estate planning, trusts and probate. He is AV-rated, has been certified by the State Bar of California as a Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law and is a former licensed Certified Public Accountant.
Janet GarufisPresident and CEO
Montecito Bank & Trust
Ms. Garufis has spent 25 years in retail, business, commercial, and private banking. Ms. Garufis began her banking career over 30 years ago with Security Pacific Bank, now Bank of America, with experience in retail, business, commercial and private banking.
Christine GarveyRetired Banker and Lawyer
Ms. Garvey is currently serving as a director on four public company boards: Healthcare Properties, Prologis, Toll Bros., and Union Bank. Additionally, she is a director on the not-for-profit boards on iCivics, Habitat for Humanity Southern Santa Barbara County, La Casa de Maria, and Immaculate Heart High School in Los Angeles. While in banking, Christine has managed over 200 million square feet of space at Wells Fargo, Bank of America and Deutsche Bank in London, as well as managing real estate lending at Bank of America.
Fitzgerald Hartley Company
Mr. Hartley has invested in real estate and has managed a full roster of musical talent including LeAnn Rimes, Brad Paisley, and Olivia Newton John. He also serves as Chairman of the Board at The Academy of Country Music, and maintains offices in Ventura and Nashville, TN. In addition to a successful career in the music industry, Mr. Hartley also owns the Watermark restaurant in Ventura, CA.
Larry HibblerOwner and President, Simi Valley Ford
Larry Hibbler is the President and Owner of Simi Valley Ford in Simi Valley, California. Larry has been in the automobile industry for nearly 43 years. His extensive career has included an array of positions and roles, including – salesperson, sales manager, general sales manager, partner, and principle owner.
Ralph T. Iannelli, Jr.President & CEO
Essex Capital, Corp.
Investor, executive, and business owner Ralph T. Iannelli Jr. is 40-year veteran of the finance, venture capital, and technology markets. From the beginning of his career as a securities trader at a Wall Street firm to his current role as President and CEO of Essex Capital Corporation in Montecito, California, Ralph Iannelli has garnered a vast amount of experience and knowledge within the investment community.
William KearneySr. Vice President
Mr. Kearney joined Merrill Lynch in 1975. During his career with Merrill Lynch, Bill has coordinated private placements for the West Coast, served as the Sales Director for offices from Encino to San Luis Obispo and served on the National Advisory to Merrill Lynch Management. In 2004, Bill was honored with the Merrill Lynch Lifetime Achievement Award.
Congress of California Seniors
An Air Force veteran and former national director of the United Auto Workers' political and legislative department, Mr. Lacayo has advised U.S. presidents, members of Congress, Senate, and governors, marched for civil rights alongside Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., championed the rights of farm workers with Cesar Chavez, and helped to found and lead the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement and the U.S. Hispanic Leadership Institute.
Douglas McRaeFinancial Consultant
Mr. McRae has been in the financial industry for more than four decades serving in the investment management and trust fields working with business owners, medical and legal professionals, corporate executives and entertainment field executives. Over the last thirty years he has served on numerous not-for-profit boards focusing on fund development and financial management.
American Tooth Industries
Mr. Pozzi’s professional career covers prestigious positions with the Organizing Committees of the 1990, 1994, and 1999 FIFA World Cups, the Olympic Games of Atlanta, Salt Lake, Athens and Torino. Most recently, he has served as the Local Liaison for the International Paralympic Committee at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver, Canada, and as Bid Consultant for the successful bid by the City of Sochi, Russia, to host the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.
Creative Director, Novocom
Mr. Ridgway has earned more than 150 national awards for print and television design. Among the many honors he has received are over a dozen Emmy Awards (including three for NBC News and two for “The CBS Evening News”), in addition to numerous Broadcast Designers Association, Cable Ace, Monitor and Telly Awards.
Blaise SimquPresident and CEO
SAGE Publications, Inc.
Blaise R. Simqu is the President and Chief Executive Officer of SAGE Publications, one of the leading academic and educational publishers in the world. The SAGE group of companies includes SAGE Publications, Inc., Corwin Press, and CQ Press based in Washington, DC., in the U.S.; SAGE Publications, Ltd. in the U.K.; SAGE Publications, Ltd. Pvt., in New Delhi, and SAGE Asia-Pacific in Singapore. Blaise has been part of the SAGE organization for more than 20 years. He has held a variety of positions from Editor to Vice President to Executive Vice President. He was appointed C.E.O. in 2004. Blaise has also worked with the Hampton-Brown Company, Jossey-Bass Publishers and the Kinko’s Corporation.
Peter WollonsPresident and CEO
Airborne Technologies, Inc.
Mr. Wollons founded Airborne Technologies in 1973 after graduating from college with a degree in accounting. His career in Aerospace grew over the years to become a major manufacturer of airframe structural components for the United States Air force and Navy as well as governments throughout the world flying US manufactured aircraft.
Loeb & Loeb LLC
Mr. Zolke focuses his practice on media, entertainment, sports and intellectual property law. He has handled acquisitions and sales of media properties and programming, and other intellectual property assets. In the area of sports law, Mr. Zolke has substantial experience handling a variety of matters, including media rights, venue, sponsorship and naming rights agreements. Additionally, Mr. Zolke handles a substantial amount of intellectual property matters, including name and likeness exploitation, branding and licensing.