Junior Board of Directors

Mission of the Junior Board

The Junior Board is comprised of motivated and philanthropically-minded young professionals seeking to positively impact the lives of at-risk children and youth in the greater Los Angeles area.

In 2018, the mission of the Junior Board is to ensure the continued operation and success of the Business and Tech Academies through innovative fundraising events.   You are welcome to join us at:

Click here to learn more about the Business and Tech Academies, call (818) 830 – 3646 to learn more about the Junior Board and these fundraising events, and click here to   directly to our Business And Tech Academies.

Officers of the Junior Board

Juliana M. Soic

Associate Attorney, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Junior Board Chairperson

Juliana (Julie) is a mid-level associate attorney in the Real Estate Department of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP. As an attorney who is admitted to practice law in both California and New York, Julie’s practice experience includes representing private equity funds, banks, developers, and large- and mid-cap institutional investors in real estate acquisitions, sales, financings, joint venture structuring and land use matters throughout the United States.

Julie received her bachelor’s degree in History from Brown University in 2008 and her law degree from the Duke University School of Law in 2012, when she graduated with cum laude honors. At both institutions, Julie pursued her longstanding dedication to community service and progressive social change through her work with the Innocence Project and the Duke Center for Criminal Justice and Professional Responsibility (focusing on eliminating wrongful convictions and racial bias in our criminal justice system) and Students for Sensible Drug Policy (focusing on felon disenfranchisement issues and reducing recidivism amongst drug-using populations).

Julie began working with El Nido in 2017, and has since served (and continues to serve) on El Nido’s Scholarship Committee and Business Academy Advisory Board. Julie is also the founding member and current Chairperson of the Junior Board of Directors. She speaks French fluently (having lived in Paris for two years) and her hobbies include interior design, cooking, Pilates and snowboarding.


xiomaraXiomara Peña

Founder, XIO Partners
Junior Board Member, Junior Board Secretary (Primary)

Xiomara Peña works as California’s Deputy Director and National Hispanic Outreach Manager for Small Business Majority, a national, non-partisan, non-profit organization focused on promoting smart public policy that will positively impact small business owners and entrepreneurs. Small Business Majority also commissions opinion research on both national and state levels to determine small business owners’ views on a range of topics including: healthcare, access to capital, workforce, retirement and much more.

Her most notable accolades include a Leading the Way award and the Champion for Families award for her leadership in the Latino community. In 2016, Xiomara was recognized by the L.A. Mayor’s Office of Economic Development for her extensive work highlighting responsible lending and education on access to capital options for small businesses. She currently sits on the Advisory Board for the Women’s Mentoring Collaborative Program and is the Chair for the El Nido Family Centers Alumni Association.​


Juliette Estrade

Executive Assistant to SVP, West Coast Production, HBO
Junior Board Member, Junior Board Secretary (Alternate)

Juliette is a New York-barred attorney currently working in the production department of HBO in Los Angeles. While originally from Paris, France, Juliette attended UCLA School of Law, fell in love with Los Angeles and decided to stay and pursue a career here.  She naturally rolled her prior experience in the legal department of Canal Plus in Paris into a career with HBO.  Although her legal background has been an undeniable benefit to her career, her passion lies elsewhere in the creation and production of purpose-driven television content.

Through HBO, Juliette has been introduced to several compelling, local community-based organizations.  With a specific interest in encouraging the creative voices of school children, as well as empowering homeless youth in Los Angeles, Juliette is an active participant her community.  Her awareness of the disparity between the “Hollywood Fairytale” and reality of life in this City has driven her to dedicate her time to pushing fellow young professionals to obtain the skills and education necessary to succeed, through El Nido programs such as the Business Academy.


Members of the Junior Board

Arden Baker

Special Events Assistant, Creative Artists Agency (CAA)
Junior Board Member

Originally from Washington DC, Arden began her career as the concert chair and talent buyer as a student at Dickinson College, in Carlisle Pennsylvania where she graduated with a BA in Environmental Studies in 2014.  At Dickinson she worked with several different groups on campus to plan social and fundraising events for the alumni association and study abroad programs in addition to the concerts. Over the summer during her college years she worked with Kid Power, a Washington DC based nonprofit focused on helping youth in DC communities by promoting academic excellence and leadership skills. Post-graduation, her passion for music and event production led her out to Los Angeles to pursue a career in entertainment beginning with an internship at Creative Artists Agency in the electronic music department.  Arden has continued a path at CAA ever since, firstly in the entertainment contracts division and most recently as Special Events Assistant in the music department, where she manages bookings for all of CAA’s musical roster for brands, sports teams, tech companies and more. Her enthusiasm for event production goes beyond her role at CAA, she has helped produce events for LA Comic Con, Yuri’s Night, Goldenvoice and the Best Friends Animal Society. Eager to give back to the L.A. community and get involved with another nonprofit, Arden began working with El Nido in January 2018.

Roger Chen

Investment Professional at Karlin Asset Management, Inc.
Junior Board Member

Roger is an investment professional at Karlin Asset Management, a private investment firm which employs an opportunistic strategy across real estate, public equities and private equity. At Karlin, Roger invests in special situations across public equities and options / derivatives. Previously, Roger worked as an investment associate at Crosslink Capital, a hybrid TMT venture / hedge fund located in San Francisco. Roger received his Bachelor of Science degree in Finance & International Business from New York University’s Leonard N. Stern School of Business in 2012. Roger has been a CFA charter holder since 2016. He was born and raised in Los Angeles and enjoys being active / working out, traveling internationally and reading.

annie dengAnnie Deng

Chief of Staff at Karlin Asset Management, Inc.
Junior Board Member

Annie is Chief of Staff at Karlin Asset Management, Inc., a private investment firm that employs a flexible framework to invest opportunistically across a variety of asset classes and investment strategies.  Previously, she was an associate in the real estate department of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, where she represented institutional clients in range of transactions, including acquisition and sale, mortgage and mezzanine financing, and joint venture.  Annie has dedicated time to volunteering with various nonprofit organizations over the years, including performing pro bono legal work for BASTA!, Kids In Need of Defense (KIND), and the California Air Resources Board (CARB).  She began working with El Nido in April 2018.

Annie graduated from McGill University in 2008 (Bachelor of Commerce in Finance) and from the University of Southern California in 2011 (Juris Doctor).  Over the years, she has lived, studied, and worked in Canada, Mainland China, Hong Kong, the United States, France, and Norway. She loves travel, film, literature, dogs, and spending time with friends and family.


Ryan R. Flanagan, J.D.

Vice President, Heffernan Insurance Brokers
Junior Board Member

Ryan R. Flanagan brings 11 years of real estate experience working as a broker, principal, developer and attorney to Heffernan’s real estate insurance practice.  Specifically, he was integral in the acquisition and disposition of over $265MM worth of raw land, multi-family, industrial and commercial real estate, including the sale of a 37 store portfolio worth $160MM for a publicly traded retail grocer.

Being an attorney and understanding the complex issues involving liability, Ryan is an asset for clients seeking to employ an individual with the responsibility of obtaining the most advantageous insurance policies both in terms of coverage and price for his clients.

Ryan graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Administration degree in Business with an emphasis in Entrepreneurship and four years later graduated from Loyola Law School of Los Angeles.  Ryan currently resides in Playa Del Rey, California with his fiance and enjoys an active lifestyle of playing golf, working out, and spending time with friends and family.


Megan Lorenzen

Associate Attorney, Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP
Junior Board Member

Megan Lorenzen is an associate in the Los Angeles office of Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP, where she practices in the firm’s Corporate and Securities Litigation group. In her practice, Megan represents clients in a wide range of commercial and corporate litigation, including property disputes, contract claims, consumer products liability and class action defense. Megan received her bachelor’s degree in Sociology from American University in 2011 and her law degree from Duke University School of Law in 2017. Through the years, Megan has dedicated her time to volunteering with various nonprofit organizations that provide support to youth, including Facilitating Leadership in Youth, Horton’s Kids, Durham Teen Court, and Alliance for Children’s Rights. When she’s not busy working or volunteering, she enjoys cooking, reading and dancing ballet.


Alex Sigoloff

Associate Attorney, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Junior Board Member

Alex is an associate attorney in the Los Angeles office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, where he practices in the firm’s Real Estate Department. In his legal practice, he represents clients in financing, acquisition and joint venture real estate transactions. Alex received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics with a minor in Philosophy from Pomona College in 2011, and graduated cum laude in 2014 from Duke University School of Law. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Alex’s longstanding commitment to community service includes work with multiple local organizations. He actively participates in pro bono clinics with Bet Tzedek Legal Services, and represents unaccompanied minors in their quest to obtain legal immigration status in the United States with Kids in Need of Defense (KIND). He enjoys crossword puzzles, Lakers games, beach volleyball, and science fiction novels.

Jordan Harper Weiss

Director of Operations, Plus Capital
Junior Board Member

Jordan is the Director of Operations at Plus Capital, a venture firm that connects Hollywood influencers, celebrities and pro athletes with investment opportunities at early and mid-stage startups.  Prior to joining Plus Capital Jordan worked at United Entertainment Group where she managed integrated global marketing campaigns of over $25 million for a portfolio of fortune 500 brands across various business categories (Fashion, Automotive, Beauty, Food and Beverage CPG, QSR/Casual Dining, and Consumer Electronics).  Jordan began her career at Creative Artist Agency, working in the music and comedy tour marketing department with clients across their roster – Lana Del Rey, Twenty One Pilots, Jackson Browne, Gabriel Iglesias, Jim Gaffigan, and Trevor Noah. Jordan attended Tulane University where she earned a bachelor’s degree of Science in Management from A.B. Freeman School of Business.