Sarah joined Thrive Scholars in October 2020 with over 15 years of experience at growth-focused educational nonprofits. A specialist in foundation relations, as Senior Director of Institutional and Family Philanthropy, she is responsible for growing institutional support from national and local grantmaking organizations.
Prior to joining Thrive, Sarah held senior development roles at uAspire, the GreenLight Fund, and City Year. Sarah earned an MA in European and Eurasian studies from George Washington University and a BA in international relations from Michigan State University. She resides in Natick, MA with her husband and three children, and serves on the board of the Natick Community Organic Farm.
Stanley Iezman is ARA’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, responsible for the strategic planning and direction of ARA’s investing and operational activities. ARA is a private equity real estate firm with over $10.2 billion of assets under management in equity, debt and preferred equity investments throughout the United States. He is a member of the firm’s Investment, Management, and Operations Committees and the Board of Directors. Mr. Iezman is a noted speaker on real estate investment and has authored numerous articles on related issues for real estate, pension, and legal industry publications. Mr. Iezman is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Southern California’s Sol Price School of Public Policy, where he teaches real estate asset management in the Master of Real Estate Development Program and is a member of the Executive Committee of the USC Lusk Center for Real Estate.
He serves as a member of the Investment Committee and as a trustee for the Saint John’s Health Center Foundation in Santa Monica, California, which provides leadership to the Saint John’s Health Center and the John Wayne Cancer Institute. He also is a member of the Planning Committee for the USC Real Estate Law and Business Forum and serves on The Center Theatre Group’s Board of Directors which is part of the Los Angeles Music Center. Mr. Iezman is actively involved in The Urban Land Institute, where he sits on the Board of Governors for the ULI Foundation and participates in the Industrial and Office Park Development Council. He is a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers; the National Association of Real Estate Investment Managers; the Pension Real Estate Association; the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans; the Los Angeles County Bar Association; the Real Estate Roundtable; the American Bar Association and was the Chair of the NYU Real Estate Institute’s Annual Conference on Pension Fund Investment in Real Estate for ten years.
Kate joined the Thrive Scholars team as Mentorship Manager in August 2020. As a first-generation college student, she is passionate about helping students thrive in higher education by connecting them with meaningful relationships and resources. Kate brings over 7 years of experience managing mentorship and academic success programs in non-profit and higher education settings.
Kate holds a Bachelor’s in Multicultural Psychology and Counseling from the Evergreen State College and a Master’s in Adult Education and Instructional Design from Antioch University Seattle.
Zachary Fruhling joined Thrive Scholars in 2020 as Director of Instructional Design. Zachary has nearly 20 years of experience in higher education, both in the classroom and as an instructional designer and educational content author and developer.
Prior to joining Thrive Scholars, Zachary taught philosophy at the University of California, Santa Cruz and at several community colleges, including Cabrillo College, Evergreen Valley College, and most recently at College of Eastern Idaho.
Zachary was the Senior Learning Design Author for logic and philosophy at Cengage, a global education and technology company, where he authored and developed the highly successful Aplia online learning materials for logic and philosophy, used by college and university students nationwide.
Most recently Zachary was a Senior Instructional Designer for HotChalk, Inc. where he designed and built graduate-level online courses in a variety of disciplines for universities such as Concordia University, Nebraska and Concordia University, Portland.
Zachary is also a prolific writer, blogger, podcaster, and poet.
Vannessa joined Thrive Scholars as the Development and Communications Manager in August of 2020. As a first-generation college student from a low-income community, Vannessa appreciates the opportunities that educational access organizations have brought to her life. After earning her BA in Communications with a minor in Art, she journeyed through South America, lived in Australia, and worked as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Panama. She credits her education for opening doors to a world of new and global experiences. She is committed to providing educational opportunities to young people so they can also thrive. Prior to working at Thrive, Vannessa has held positions in independent school admissions, college advising, community organizing, and youth development.
She balances her work life with yoga, hiking, dancing, and eating out with friends. She also loves to travel and immerse herself in the beautiful differences the world has to offer.
Robert H. Brook holds the Distinguished Chair in Health Care Services at the RAND Corporation, where he previously served for 19 years as vice president and director of RAND Health. He is also a senior principal physician policy researcher at the RAND Corporation and professor emeritus of Medicine and Health Services at UCLA. He led the Health and Quality Group on the $80M Health Insurance Experiment and was co-principal investigator on the Health Services Utilization Study. He was the co-principal investigator on the only national study that has investigated, at a clinical level, how Medicare’s prospective payment system affected the quality and outcome of acute hospital care. He was also the co-principal investigator on a joint activity of 12 academic medical centers, the American Medical Association, and RAND, the purpose of which was to develop appropriateness criteria and parameters for the use of procedures.
Brook received his M.D. and Sc.D. from Johns Hopkins University.
Nancy Hinojos is a SCS-Noonan alumna who is currently serving on the Los Angeles board. After graduating from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, Nancy received the Fulbright Fellowship in Binational Business. She currently works for Deloitte Consulting in Los Angeles, as a Strategy & Analytics Consultant supporting private and public sector clients to strengthen their data science capabilities. At every step of her academic and professional career, Nancy has been a big advocate for diversity and inclusion. As an alumna board member she looks forward to supporting SCS Noonan as they continue to scale.
For over 30 years, Lauro enjoyed a multifaceted successful career both in fortune 100 corporations and in small entrepreneurial companies internationally and domestically. Before he retired from Amgen in 2019, he led a team of transformation specialists focused on multiple improvement opportunities and risks throughout the company. In this role, he created and led the Business Performance Team, the Acquisition Integration COE, the Enterprise Risk Management Board function and the Engineering Excellence Team. Prior to Amgen, he developed and managed multinational joint ventures in the satellite communications field in the Americas.
He was CEO of companies owned by Vodafone, Citigroup and Loral Space and Communications. Lauro was Satmex’s CEO where he guided the company through its privatization, corporate transformation and international growth. He began his career at McKinsey and Company in Mexico and later he also pioneered the startup of McKinsey’s operations in Brazil. He has served in multiple boards, the most recent being, the Board and Compensation Committee of Campus Crest Communities, an NYSE traded company. He also serves on the Board of UNETE, a non-for-profit organization taking technology to schools in impoverished areas throughout Mexico.
He holds a BS in Industrial Engineering from Texas A&M University and an MBA from Duke University he also studied Effective Corporate Governance for CEOs at Harvard.
Cynthia (Cindy) and Sheldon (Shel) grew up on the east coast, met in London England as part of a semester abroad program, married in 1974 and moved to Los Angeles in 1985.
Shel is a founding member and principal of Oaktree Capital Management, a Los Angeles-based institutional money manager specializing in alternative investment strategies. He co-manages the firm’s US and Global high-yield bond portfolios. Prior to forming Oaktree, Shel was a Managing Director at Trust Company of the West (TCW).
Cindy has been active in the non-profit sector, having chaired Partnership Scholars, an educational enrichment program for economically disadvantaged youth. She remains quite involved in supporting human rights and women’s health issues. Also she is an active doubles tennis player at the Riviera Tennis Club.
Shel is a trustee of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation and the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History and serves on the Investment Committees of Bowdoin College and the California Community Foundation, both of which he previously chaired. He also teaches a second year MBA investment seminar at USC Marshall School.
Shel holds a BA from Bowdoin College and an MBA in accounting and finance from Columbia University. Cindy received her BA from Connecticut College and her MBA in Marketing from Rutgers University.
Stephanie joins Thrive Scholars as the College Access Manager based in Los Angeles, CA. Stephanie’s experience as a first-generation college student coupled with her passion for social justice has led her to work in college access. Before joining Thrive Scholars, Stephanie was a College Counselor at the Schuler Scholar Program. There she worked closely with Scholars and families to navigate the college process and help demystify access to higher education. She is excited to bring her experience in college counseling to Thrive Scholars!
Stephanie graduated from Bucknell University with a B.A. in Sociology and Spanish. During her time there, she was involved in the Latino Student organization, community service and independent research. In her free time, she enjoys listening to podcasts, playing board games and exploring new places!