Mel is the founder and Managing Partner of Nile Capital Group, a private equity firm specializing in providing capital and services to talented boutique and emerging managers of superior growth potential. Prior to founding Nile Capital Group, he spent a year and a half with Investec Asset Management as Director of Institutional Investments, North America. Previous to this, he spent ten years with Artio Global Investors as Head of Global Sales and Marketing and member of the executive management committee. During his tenure at Artio, AUM grew from $800 million to a peak of $78 billion ultimately resulting in an IPO and listing on the NYSE. Mel also spent nine years with Wells Capital Management in the capacity of Senior Portfolio Manager before becoming Managing Director of Sales and Marketing. He formerly spent five years with Salomon Smith Barney and its predecessor, where he was Vice President within Equity Sales. Mel holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and received an MBA from the Anderson School at UCLA. Mel also attended IMD, Global Leadership Program in Lausanne, Switzerland. He is a member of the Los Angeles Society of Financial Analysts. Mel is on the board and investment committees of California Community Foundation, YMCA of Metropolitan Los Angeles, South Central Scholarship Foundation, and the Toigo Foundation Governing Board.
Martin Jacobs is an equity portfolio manager at Capital Group. He has 29 years of investment experience and has been with Capital Group for 16 years. Before joining Capital, Martin was an executive director and senior investment analyst at Brinson Partners, Inc. in Chicago and an industry analyst at Security Pacific Merchant Bank in New York. He was also a research analyst at the Wharton Center for Applied Research, Inc. Martin holds an MBA in finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a bachelor’s degree in industrial and systems engineering from the University of Southern California. He also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation and is a member of the CFA Institute. Martin is currently a member of the Capital Group Companies Los Angeles Charitable Contributions Committee, a Vice Chairman of the Children’s Bureau of Southern California, a Director of the Board of Trustees of the Crossroads Community School, and a Trustee of SCS Noonan Scholars.
Stuart is a Partner in DLA Piper’s Los Angeles office. Previously, Stuart was the founding and managing partner of a Los Angeles-based boutique law firm that merged with DLA Piper in 2017. He also serves on the Board of Directors of Loyola Law School.
Jeff Weiss founded CCI, Inc. in 1986. CCI runs exclusive ongoing forums where CEOs and senior executives from Global 1000 firms and large healthcare systems can explore strategies and growth. CCI is partnered with major global consulting firms. He is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Medicine at UCLA, where he so-leads the Leadership Program for UCLA/Rand National Clinician Scholars Program (Formerly Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars).
In 1983, Jeff co-founded the Southern California Technology Executives Network (SO/CAL/TEN), a CEO development organization composed of 210 technology chief executives and sponsored by leading venture capital, investment banking, major law and search firms. SO/CAL/TEN was recognized by Inc. and Fortune as one of the first and most successful high-tech networking organizations.
Previously, he was an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Bio-Behavioral Sciences at the UCLA Medical School and served as Director of the Department of Behavior Medicine at the UCLA/San Bernardino County Medical Center, where he taught Family Medicine and Introduction to Psychiatry to UCLA/UCR Medical Students. He is a licensed Psychologist specializing in behavioral medicine, achievement motivation and career strategy.
Previously, Jeff was a Director at City of Hope Medical Center, High Technology Group, Chrysalis (a homeless employment organization) , Homeboy Industries and MindCare Solutions, a Venture funded Telepsychiatry Firm spun out of Vanderbilt. He was also a Trustee of the California School of Professional Psychology and was a Trustee of the California Academy of Family Physicians Foundation.
He received a PhD in Clinical Psychology and an MS in Organizational Development from the California School of Professional Psychology and completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Tennessee Medical School.
Renita Smith is Founder of an independent consulting firm that guides companies in developing and implementing marketing, business development, and fundraising strategy. Renita gained experience at companies such as Citicorp North America and General Mills. Renita has also served as Executive Consultant and Vice President of Strategy to the Los Angeles Urban League, and served on the Board of Trustees of Chadwick School. She is particularly passionate about ensuring the success of underrepresented minority students in the STEM fields. Renita holds a B.A. degree in Economics from Stanford University and a MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Patrick Kirby has two decades of management experience spanning the corporate, public and nonprofit sectors. He currently serves as the Executive Vice President & Chief Growth Officer at The Institute for Nonprofit Practice. Before that, Patrick taught high school before taking on a range of leadership roles at Citizen Schools, City Year and in the Timberland Company’s Corporate Social Responsibility department. Patrick is a graduate of McGill University and has served on the Board of Advisors of Orchard Gardens K-8 School (Roxbury, MA), GroundWork USA, and Volunteer NH! and The Brookings Institute’s “Building Bridges Task Force on International Volunteering and Service.” He currently coaches nonprofit executives at the Tufts Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service.
Evelyn previously served on the board of South Central Scholars from it’s inception in 2001 until a few years ago. Moved by the stories of the students, their drive and determination, coupled with the devotion and leadership of the Londons, Evelyn and her husband David have remained active in the South Central Scholars community through fundraising and keeping close ties with the organization. Mother of four children, Evelyn actively participates in three different parent organizations and has also served as President of the Parent Association and Board Member of First Pres Preschool. She is also a Girl Scout troop leader and a member of Everychild Foundation. Evelyn graduated from Barnard College with a degree in Economics.
Rick is a founder and Co-Managing Partner of Evolution Media, an investment company created in partnership with Evolution Media Capital (EMC), TPG Growth, and Participant Media, which invests globally in technology businesses within the sports, media, and entertainment industries. EMC is a merchant bank formed in partnership with Creative Artists Agency (CAA) and offers investment advisory, asset management, industry research, capital raising services, and media rights advisory services. Prior to Evolution, Rick led the Film Finance group at CAA where he focused on the packaging and financing of feature films, as well as the structuring of film production and finance companies. Rick serves on the boards of Evolution Media, Evolution Media Capital, Fred Segal, Scopely, Jaunt, iflix, attn:, and is the Chairman of the Board of Inner-City Filmmakers and is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania.
Joan is president and CEO of Herman and Associates LLC, a healthcare and management consulting firm, which specializes in consulting to managed care organizations, provider groups, pharmacy benefit managers, dental, vision and behavioral health companies, as well as to private equity firms investing in healthcare. Prior to that, Ms. Herman was president and CEO of the Consumer Business Unit for WellPoint, Inc. Ms. Herman serves on the Board of Directors of Convergys (NYSE:CVG), HealthSouth (NYSE:HLS), and AARP Services Inc. In addition to SCS Noonan Scholars, she serves on the boards of other nonprofit organizations, including the Venice Family Clinic Foundation, the Gabriella Foundation and Center Dance Arts.
Bob is currently Executive Chairman of Patient Care America and Chairman of the Sapphire RCMS Advisory Board. Mr. Funari has over 32 years of experience managing health care service, medical device, and instrumentation companies. He formerly served on the boards of directors of Beckman Coulter, Bay Cities National Bank (chairman), Community First Financial Group, First Consulting Group, and Pope and Talbot.
He received his BS in mechanical engineering, with honors, from Cornell University and his MBA from Harvard Business School where he was a Baker Scholar. He and his wife Pam live in Long Beach.