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:

KickNic Kickball Tournament, January 25, 2020:  Social and BBQ catered by El Nido’s Culinary Academy students

Barrels and Bottles, July 28, 2019, Hancock Park: An upscale, backyard beer and wine tasting benefit

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

annie dengAnnie Deng

Chief of Staff at Karlin Asset Management, Inc.;  Junior Board Co-President 

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.  

Juliana M. Soic

Real Estate Attorney and Consultant; Junior Board Co-President  

Juliana (Julie), most recently a mid-level associate in the Real Estate Department of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, is an attorney who is admitted to practice law in both California and New York. Julie’s practice experience while at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher focused on representing private equity funds, banks, developers, and other large- and mid-cap institutional investors in real estate acquisitions, sales, financings, and joint ventures throughout the United States, as well as advising on a variety of land use matters. Julie is currently working as a consultant for the planning and development of an innovative, sustainable living community in Idaho.  

El Nido Family Centers Jr. Board of Directors

Shanda McCune

Director of Operations, Codesmith; Junior Board Vice President

Shanda McCune is the Director of Operations at Codesmith, one of the leading tech startups innovating software engineering education. As the non-technical lead for the Venice campus, Shanda manages student admissions and culture, ensures smooth functioning of the engineering programs, and advises the CEO on strategic planning. Previously, Shanda was the Program Manager in the Social Entrepreneurship Department at Mayan Families, an NGO serving indigenous communities in the highlands of Guatemala. Shanda worked directly with Mayan artisans to help them grow their small businesses and learn about finances. Originally from San Luis Obispo, California, Shanda received her BA in Public Policy from Pomona College in 2011. An intrepid traveler with two passports, Shanda has lived and worked abroad in Melbourne, Australia, Suwon, South Korea, and Panajachel, Guatemala before making Venice her home last year. In her spare time, Shanda enjoys traveling to new countries, attending sporting events and discovering new restaurants in her neighborhood. 

Roger Chen

Investment Professional at Karlin Asset Management, Inc.; Junior Board Treasurer

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.  

Jordan Harper Weiss

Director of Operations, Plus Capital; Junior Board Fundraising Chair

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.  

xiomaraXiomara Peña

Founder, XIO Partners; Junior Board Community Outreach Committee Chair

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.​  

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.  

Juliette Estrade

Business Affairs, Fox Searchlight Television; Junior Board Member

Juliette is a New York-barred attorney currently working in the Business Affairs department of Fox Searchlight Television 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 and subsequently, with Fox Searchlight.  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 the entertainment industry, 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. 

Alex Sigoloff

Associate General Counsel, Post Investment Group; Junior Board Member

Alex is Associate General Counsel at Post Investment Group, a multifamily real estate investment company.  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.  

El Nido Family Centers Jr. Board of DirectorsSam Stewart

Business Insights & Analysis Manager, Sony Pictures Entertainment; Junior Board Member

Sam is a Business Insights & Analysis Manager at Sony Pictures Entertainment. Prior to joining Sony, Sam worked as a consultant for entrepreneurial and small business ventures, where she advised leaders on market strategies, and began her career in corporate finance at Target. Sam has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Finance and Economics at the University of Georgia and earned her MBA at Harvard Business School.  


Past Junior Board Members

Saori Bainum

Ryan R. Flanagan, J.D.

Megan Lorenzen