FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 1, 2023
CONTACT: Gustavo Caraveo | Gustavo@childadvocatessv.org
MILPITAS, CA — Child Advocates of Silicon Valley is pleased to announce the appointment of four new board members:
- Ehi Oiyemhonlan, Product Development Engineer at Intel Corporation, effective September 27, 2023.
- Kristen Burton, Senior Director, Subscription Analytics & Revenue Operations—Sales at ServiceNow, effective November 1, 2023.
- Ben Shively, Partner, Wealth Management at Moss Adams, effective November 1, 2023.
- Karen Whipple, former Director of Corporate Communications at TigerGraph, effective November 1, 2023.
“We are thrilled to welcome Ehi, Kristen, Ben and Karen to our board,” said Frederick J. Ferrer, CEO of Child Advocates of Silicon Valley. “Their unique backgrounds will serve to diversify our board in gender, ethnicity and skills, further strengthening our efforts to better serve Santa Clara County’s foster youth. Additionally, Ehi, Ben and Karen’s years of experience as Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Volunteers gives them valuable perspective on our CASA Program, and their understanding of how to work with Silicon Valley’s most vulnerable children will uniquely inform their contributions to the board.”
Ehi Oiyemhonlan has served as a CASA since 2020. An electrical engineer, Oiyemhonlan brings valuable experience after five years as a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters. “Being able to put myself in [kids’] shoes is critical to being a good CASA,” Oiyemhonlan said. “I often talk to my mentee about sensitive topics, particularly regarding race, [explaining] some of the challenges that we may face today because of the color of our skin and letting him know that regardless of how members of society may look at him or perceive him, he can accomplish anything that he wants to do in life…The goal is to provide him with a different outlook on life.” In addition to offering vital cultural insight into more effectively serving this population, Oiyemhonlan’s ability to cultivate strong, strategic partnerships and spearhead innovative processes make him a true asset to the board.
Kristen Burton holds a degree in industrial engineering and previously served on Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s Industrial & Manufacturing Engineering Advisory Board for 10 years. “I’d like to bring my operations and analytics experience to help Child Advocates achieve their mission and goals,” said Burton. Her expertise in feedback gathering and reporting strategies as well as optimizing operational processes through automation and simplification will be a valuable addition to the board. Burton also hopes to build a strong partnership between her company, ServiceNow, and Child Advocates.
Ben Shively served as a CASA for nearly three years and stated that joining the Board offers him the, “Ability to continue serving kids in the community and contributing time and resources to enriching their lives.” Shively previously served as a Northwest Associate Board Member for Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos, where he was heavily involved in fundraising. He plans to apply those skills to his work with Child Advocates while placing equal emphasis on translating childhood development research into programming and increasing engagement of the Board’s network. Shively has utilized his extensive experience in financial planning as a guest lecturer at multiple universities, and he looks forward to contributing that knowledge to Child Advocates’ financial management as well.
Karen Whipple brings almost four years of experience as a CASA and previously served over 12 years as an elected school board trustee in Moreland School District, where she held the position of board clerk for multiple terms and represented the board at both county and state meetings. Whipple has completed the California School Boards Association’s Masters in Governance program and has proven expertise in marketing, public relations and communications, specializing in effectively reaching diverse audiences through a range of mediums and programs. “I feel strongly about helping this community,” Whipple said. “I love my work as a CASA and am [excited to] contribute to the organization in a more strategic way.”
The backgrounds of Child Advocates’ board members is diverse, and collectively, the Board possesses expertise in a range of professional fields including technology, child welfare, law, business planning, accounting and fundraising. It is the Board’s responsibility to provide counsel and oversight regarding the direction and operation of Child Advocates as an agency as well as raise awareness about our CASA Program to support the continued recruitment of potential volunteers and donors.
About Child Advocates of Silicon Valley
Child Advocates of Silicon Valley is an independent nonprofit 501(c) 3 organization created in 1986. We serve children aged birth to 21 years old who are placed in the Santa Clara County Dependency Court System for having experienced trauma in the form of abuse, neglect and/or abandonment. We are responsible for operating the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) program in Santa Clara County according to the national guidelines, which entails recruiting, training and supporting CASA Volunteers. We are an affiliate of the National CASA Association. To learn more, please visit ChildAdvocatesSV.org.