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Board of Trustees

As Board of Trustees, we hold the school, its mission and its future “in trust.” We use the school’s mission statement and strategic goals as guideposts for board decisions. Bylaws facilitate our work by serving as a reference point.
Our primary work is future-focused and strategic, creating the school from which our grandchildren will benefit tomorrow. We delegate the day-to-day operations to the head of school, via an annual charge approved by the board. Our major responsibilities include setting the strategic direction; ensuring compliance with applicable laws and regulations; accounting for both the financial stability and the financial future of the institution; and selecting, supporting and evaluating the head of school.
A significant portion of the board’s work is done through its eight committees: Audit, Buildings and Grounds, Engagement, Executive, Finance, Head’s Evaluation and Support, Employee Retirement Plan and Trustees.

Officers of the Board (2018–2019)

List of 3 items.

  • Chris Richey, president

    Chris Richey joined the board of trustees in 2014 and became president in 2017. He has served on the LJCDS Finance Committee and Investment Subcommittees since 2012; and the Retirement Committee since 2013.

    He is the managing partner of Neosho Capital, LLC, a registered investment advisory firm. Previous to founding Neosho Capital in 2004, he was director of Mutual Fund Portfolio Management at Brandes Investment Partners (1996-2003), an associate of Cooley Godward Castro (1993-1996) and a credit officer at Union Bank of Switzerland and Marine Midland Bank (1986-1990).

    Richey earned a bachelor’s degree from Southern Methodist University, a Master of Philosophy (Management Studies) from Oxford University, a Juris Doctor from Stanford University and is a chartered financial analyst.

    Richey and his wife, Dr. Sara Browne, an associate professor of Infectious Diseases at UC San Diego, have two children, Anabel '16 and Ethan '19.
  • Lucy Smith Conroy '90, vice president of trustees

    Lucy Smith Conroy ’90 is a lifer who joined the board in 2013 and became vice president of trustees in 2017. She was past president of the Alumni Leadership Council and is Chair of the Committee on Trustees and a member of the Executive Committee.
    Conroy is a freelance theater director and member of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society whose work has been produced both in New York and at regional theaters across the country. She is the former resident dramaturg at Court Theatre in Chicago.
    Conroy earned a Bachelor of Arts in theater and women’s studies from Trinity College and a Master of Fine Arts in directing from Columbia University.

    Conroy and her husband, Ambrose, have three children, Ben '24, Keira '25 and baby Sara.

  • Hal Dunning, treasurer

    Hal Dunning joined the board in 2017 and is President and Chief Operating Officer of Marsh & McLennan Agency – Western Region. Over his 16 years with the company, Dunning served as a key member of the management team that guided the company from an $18 million company with 143 associates in one office to a $180 million company with 650 associates in six offices. All but $20 million of this growth has been organic growth. Barney & Barney was sold to Marsh & McLennan Companies in 2014. During this period of growth, Dunning has been responsible for accounting, HR, organizational learning, IT, communications, facilities and legal & compliance.
    Dunning also serves on the board with The San Diego Foundation and the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce.
    Dunning earned his MBA in accounting at University of Southern California Marshall School of Business and his BA in history from Pomona College.
    Dunning and his wife, Hilary, have a daughter, Haley '20.

Ex-Officio Members of the Board

List of 2 items.

  • Gary Krahn, Ph.D., head of school

    Gary Krahn, Ph.D. is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Serving for more than 29 years on active duty, he retired in the grade of Brigadier General. A significant part of his military career was as a mathematician, educator, analyst, and finally, professor and head of the Department of Mathematical Sciences at West Point. He earned his doctorate in applied mathematics.

    Krahn has been an invited speaker at the National Academy of Sciences, National Science Foundation, Mathematics Association of America and universities around the world. In 2004, he deployed to Afghanistan to help establish and build the 18th university in Afghanistan, hiring the initial 51 Afghan faculty members and shaping the curriculum. 

    Most recently, Krahn was head of Trinity Valley School in Fort Worth for eight years. 

    He and his wife, Paula, reside in San Diego and have two daughters.
  • John D. Collins, board advisor

    John D. Collins has provided legal counsel to LJCDS for more than 25 years. He has been on the board of trustees since 2012, serving on the Audit Committee and the Executive Committee. 
    During his career at Luce Forward Hamilton & Scripps in San Diego and Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP in Del Mar, he has been named in “Best Lawyers in America,” “San Diego’s Top 25 Lawyers,” and “Southern California Super Lawyers.”
    He has given more than 25 years of service to Project Concern International as past chairman of the board and current board member. Collins has also served on the boards of National University and the San Diego Economic Development Corporation.

    He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from Stanford University and his Juris Doctor degree from Stanford Law School.

    He and his wife, Kathy, have been partners in a downtown San Diego art gallery for almost 20 years. 

Members of the Board (2018–2019)

List of 16 items.

  • Karen Deschaine Anderson

    Karen Deschaine Anderson has been on the board of trustees since 2014 and has served on the Audit Committee since 2008.

    Anderson is a corporate lawyer in the San Diego office of Cooley LLP. She earned a Juris Doctor with a specialization in business law from the University of California, Los Angeles School of Law, an MBA from Auburn University and a Bachelor of Science in economics from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Prior to law school, Anderson served as a captain in the U.S. Army and commanded two companies.

    She was one of the founders of the national nonprofit organization, Ms. JD, and serves on the board of directors of Athena San Diego. She has been recognized with SD Metro magazine’s top "40 Under 40" and “Women Who Impact San Diego” and with Athena’s Pinnacle Award.
    She has two children, Dakota, class of 2019 and Jenna, class of 2021.
  • Yuriko Anton

    Yuriko Anton earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of California, Los Angeles and subsequently worked in New York, London and Tokyo in the financial industry. Anton has served on the boards of the Maria Mitchell Association, Beacon Hill Nursery School, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the Plastic Pollution Coalition, The Japan Society of Boston and the American Repertory Theater. In addition to her work as a board member, she has been active in several other nonprofits and educational institutions, including Claremont McKenna College, Colorado College and Buckingham Browne & Nichols School.

    Anton has five children including two step-sons with husband Philip. Her stepchildren, Miles ’28 and Wyatt ’21, have been a part of the LJCDS community since 2016.
  • Jack Chitayat

    Since September 2016, Jack Chitayat has served on the Buildings and Grounds Committee of the Board of Trustees and as a board member starting in 2017. Chitayat is Chairman, Managing Member and CEO of Atlantic Realty Group. The main activities of the group include principal investments in, syndication and management of U.S. commercial real estate investments in the North East, Mid-Atlantic, South, Midwest, Texas, Southwest, California and Canada.
    Chitayat's private family investment arm, Chitayat Holdings LLC, has made investments in private and public technology, biotech and finance related companies. Chitayat simultaneously serves as Chairman and CEO of LLPG, Inc., since its formation in June 2003, at which time it acquired a license from Liquidmetal Technologies for the use of the Liquidmetal family of non-precious and precious alloys in jewelry and luxury product applications.
    Prior to joining LJCDS, Chitayat served as Chair and President of the Board of Trustees of The Gillispie School in La Jolla, as well as Vice President of the Board of Trustees and Chair of the Investment Committee, Finance Committee, Development Committee and Master Planning Committee. Chitayat has also done extensive fundraising for both World ORT and American ORT, an organization dedicated to providing education and training to under-privileged Jewish families in over 50 countries.

    Chitayat graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor's in economics and international relations from Tufts University.
    Chitayat and his wife, Nikoo, have two sons, Cyrus and Cameron, both in class of 2023.

  • Rebecca Gaffney

    Rebecca Gaffney joined the board in 2013 and has served as a member of the Marketing and Communications Committee, New Families Subcommittee and the Internal Communications Subcommittee.
    Gaffney comes from a background in strategy work. Most recently, she was a director in group strategy for Christie’s in London where her work focused on branding, global auction house operations and CRM. Previously, Gaffney worked at McKinsey & Company (also in London) advising clients across industries on strategies for growth, marketing and operations.
    Gaffney earned a Bachelor of Arts in government from the College of William and Mary, a Master of Science in European studies from the European Institute at the London School of Economics, and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

    Gaffney and her husband, Jamie Levine, have a son, Alexander in the class of 2027.
  • Angela Glynn

    Angela Glynn joined the board of trustees in 2013 and has served as the Parents Association president, chair of the Country Day Fund and chair of the Development Committee.

    Glynn worked for Qualcomm for 10 years in sales and business development.

    She earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of North Texas.
    Glynn and her husband, Joe, have two children, Alexander, class of 2022 and Audrey, class of 2023, who both started LJCDS in 2008. 
  • Russell Holmes

    Russell Holmes joined the board in 2017 and is the founder and CEO of Projecis, Inc., a leading cloud-based content management and data visualization software company with clients in North America and Europe. Holmes also co-founded Synteract in 1995, a privately held, global contract research organization (CRO) that generates $70 million in revenue annually. He has over 20 years experience in the clinical research industry and helped Synteract, now SynteractHCR, become the leading global CRO that it is today.

    Holmes earned bachelor’s degrees in computer science and mathematics, as well as a Master of Business Administration from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, CT.
  • Bob Kain

    Bob Kain joined the board of trustees in 2015 and is currently serving on the Buildings and Grounds Committee.

    Kain is the president and co-owner of Mesa Rim Climbing and Fitness Center, one of the top 10 climbing gyms in the United States. He’s also active as a Biotech corporate advisor.

    Prior to founding Mesa Rim Climbing, Kain was at Illumina for 14 years, retiring as the Chief Engineering Officer. Illumina is the market leader in the genomics systems industry and is recognized for its industry-leading strategic decision-making, tactical execution and product engineering. Previous to joining Illumina, Kain was the director of the microarray business unit at Molecular Dynamics from 1989 to 1999.

    He is an active member of his community. Kain currently serves on the boards of commercial and community organizations including Pet Wireless, Orflo, YMCA of La Jolla and San Diego River Parks Foundation.

    Kain earned a Bachelor of Science from San Diego State University in physics, and a Master of Business Administration from Saint Mary's College of California.

    He and his wife, Ranelle, have one son, Nathan, class of 2023.
  • Jim Kelly

    Jim Kelly has been an LJCDS trustee since 2013 and serves on the Building and Grounds and Audit Committees.

    He has over 30 years of industry experience, having entitled, developed and acquired more than $1 billion in real estate assets. Kelly is president of Emerald Venture Group; former managing partner and chief operating officer of CT Realty Investors; and former principal of Cobblestone Golf Group, which he helped grow to the nation’s third largest golf management company.
    He also has over 20 years of experience in renewable technology development as founder and chairman of Tellus Technology, Inc., and co-inventor/patent holder of the Tellus Process.
    Kelly lives in La Jolla with his wife, Jennifer, and their four children. They are active in multiple local charities, with a focus on children and education.
  • James Kelly

    James Kelly has been involved in scaling operations for early-stage technology companies for the last decade. Most recently, he was responsible for building the finance and capital teams at Square, Inc. He started his career as an auditor at Deloitte and moved on to be a finance manager at Cisco Systems. Kelly earned a bachelor's degree in economics and political science from the University of California, Los Angeles.

    Kelly and his wife, Inna, are the parents of Caroline ’22, Kate ’25 and Ali ’29, and have been a part of the LJCDS community since 2015.
  • Lisa Bicker Martin

    Lisa Bicker Martin joined the board in 2017 and is a private investor and small business owner who has spent the past three decades as a leader in both the private and nonprofit sectors, and has an established track record in entrepreneurship, energy and sustainability.
    She is the immediate past chair of The San Diego Foundation’s Climate Initiative, a unique collaboration between public and private groups geared toward measuring the impacts of climate change on the San Diego region. She was also the founding president of CleanTECH San Diego and built the organization from a startup to over $1 million in annual revenues in four years. She was awarded the San Diego Business Journal ‘Women Who Mean Business Award’ in 2009 in recognition of her work to establish the San Diego region as a worldwide leader in the clean technology sector. Prior to that, she was the founding president of the California Clean Energy Fund (CalCEF), a private nonprofit $30 million investment fund formed to accelerate investment in California’s clean energy economy.
    Earlier in her career, Bicker Martin was a founder and Chief Operating Officer of NewEnergy, Inc., a high-growth, retail electricity provider that grew to over $800 million in revenues prior to its acquisition by the AES Corporation. Today, NewEnergy is the largest retail electricity provider in the United States.
    Bicker Martin has also served as General Counsel to California Council for Environmental and Economic Balance (CCEEB), a non-profit advocacy group founded by Edmund G. “Pat” Brown. In an earlier role, she also served as senior writer for Governor George Deukmejian.
    She earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of California at Davis and a Juris Doctor from the University of San Francisco.
    Bicker Martin and her husband, Jeff Martin, have two children, Roman, class of 2015 and Janey, class of 2025.
  • Dana Meiselman

    Dana Meiselman joined the board in 2017. She previously served on the marketing and communications committee, volunteered as a new parent admissions ambassador and helped produce videos for the Blue Bash.
    Meiselman has nearly two decades of experience as a television news reporter. She worked for KGTV 10 News in San Diego and for various TV stations in North Carolina, Florida, Tennessee and Michigan. She has also produced videos for nonprofit organizations including Project Concern International.
    Meiselman graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in communication, with a concentration in marketing from The Wharton School.

    Meiselman and her husband, Carter, have two children, Avery, class of 2025 and Ellis, class of 2027.
  • Amy Mischler ’91

    Amy Mischler ’91 currently works at Intuit in strategic partnerships. Her background is in marketing, business development and strategic marketing in both technology and finance companies, ranging from startups to Fortune 500 corporations. Mischler earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from the University of San Diego and a Master of Science in Business Administration from San Diego State University with a concentration in entrepreneurship. 

    Mischler is a San Diego native, an alumna (and lifer, along with her two sisters) of LJCDS and the mother of Willa ’27 and Callan ’30. She is a former chair of the Country Day Fund, the program chair of Blue Bash 2014, and has been active within the development department since she and her husband, Bob, joined LJCDS as parents in 2013.
  • Jennifer O’Brien

    Jennifer O’Brien is an owner and manager of JELD Properties, LLC, a real estate investment and management firm based in San Diego. She previously practiced law at Wegner Law Offices in Cincinnati, Ohio, worked at Bank of America Securities, LLC in San Francisco, and practiced estate planning in La Jolla at Albence & Associates. O’Brien earned a BA in German and English at Kansas State University and a Juris Doctor from the University of Cincinnati College of Law.

    O’Brien and her husband, David Stickney, are the parents of Lydia ’23 and Elinor ’25. O’Brien has been a Country Day Fund ambassador and an active volunteer at LJCDS since the family joined the community in 2007.
  • Tony Toranto

    Tony Toranto is a partner at Sheppard Mullin in the firm’s real estate, corporate and energy practice groups. He specializes in a diverse range of transaction types across these practice areas, with an emphasis on financial transactions. Toranto currently serves on the LJCDS Building and Grounds committee and was responsible for coordinating the committee’s recent presentation proposing a potential solar installation project for LJCDS. He is involved in philanthropic work with other organizations, including Jewish Family Service (where he and his wife, Karin, have served as the annual gala co-chairs) and Salk Institute for Biological Studies (where he is a member of the Salkexcellerators and serves on a scientific advisory committee). Toranto is also active in American Israel Public Affairs Committee where he is a Congressional Committee member. Toranto earned an AB, MA, MBA and JD, all from Stanford University.
    Tony and Karin are the parents of Maddy ’24 and Nate ’27 and have been a part of the LJCDS community since 2011.
  • Kevin Wechter

    Kevin Wechter has served on the board of trustees since 2013 and has been a member of the Building and Grounds (2012-2015), Safety and Security (2013-2015), and Executive (2013-2015) Committees. He previously served as board secretary from 2013-2015.

    Wechter is a principal of PacVentures, Inc., a San Diego-based commercial real estate investment company. He worked as a commercial real estate investment banker for more than six years before and during law school, where he negotiated, structured and closed more than $100 million in joint ventures, investment sales and secured financings. After law school, he was a real estate and business lawyer at Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich (now DLA Piper).
    He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration and an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin, with an emphasis in finance and real estate. He holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Southern California Law Center.
    Wechter and his wife, Dr. Jamie Resnik Wechter, have two children, Cassidy, class of 2020 and Cody, class of 2022.
  • Jing Zeng

    After moving to San Diego from China in the late 90s, Jing Zeng has owned and operated her own insurance agency since 2000 and is also a financial manager. She is actively engaged with the Chinese community both at LJCDS and in the larger San Diego area. Zeng has served on the board of the American Culture and Education Foundation and was the vice president of the San Diego Chinese American Association.

    Zeng has served on the Blue Bash committee and has been a liaison between the development office and the Chinese community at LJCDS since 2016. She is the mother of Austin ’20 and joined the board in 2018.

La Jolla Country Day School

9490 Genesee Avenue
La Jolla, CA 92037

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