Board of Trustees

Members of the Board of Trustees

List of 21 items.

  • Cris Abrego

    Cris Abrego is the CEO of Endemol Shine North America and chairman of Endemol Shine Americas.  He oversees both the North American and Latin American divisions of Endemol Shine Group, a global independent television production company. Cris has made inclusion a top priority for his team at Endemol Shine and within the wider entertainment industry, recently launching a fellowship program with the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation focused on creating opportunities within the industry for diverse students. Cris graduated from California State University, Fullerton. Cris and his wife Adriana are parents to two Buckley Upper School students and one Lower School student. He joined the board in 2020.
  • Andrea Alberini

    Andrea Alberini volunteered extensively through the Parents’ Association for years when her children attended Buckley, including serving one term as president during the 2009-2010 school year. Andrea is a former teacher and currently serves as a Trustee on the UC Davis Foundation. She and her husband Carlos are natives of Argentina and the parents of five Buckley alumni from the classes of ’03, ’05, ’08, ’10 and ’12. She chairs the advancement committee and joined the board in 2014.
  • Valeria Balfour

    Valeria Balfour is a practicing attorney specializing in labor and employment law. Prior to joining the board, Valeria served as Parents’ Association President for the 2010-11 school year. After joining the board in 2012, Valeria served as chair from 2016 to 2018. Valeria received her undergraduate degree from Duke University, a masters in public policy from Duke University, and a JD from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She and her husband Michael Goslin are parents of an alum, class of 2020, and a current Upper School student.
  • Anne-Marie Balzano

    Anne-Marie Balzano is the director of leadership and governance at the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), a non-profit membership association that provides services to more than 1,900 schools and associations of schools in the United States and abroad. Anne-Marie designs and implements learning opportunities for school administrators and trustees, and conducts research on issues facing independent schools. A former head of school and associate professor of education leadership, Anne-Marie earned her BA from The American University in Washington, D.C.; her masters in Teaching from Notre Dame de Namur University; and her Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from Mills College. She became a trustee in 2020.
  • Eric Biddle ‘94

    Eric Biddle ‘94 is a managing director in the consumer retail investment banking team at Barclays Capital in Los Angeles. Eric is a Buckley “lifer” and a graduate of Colgate University. He also received his MBA from the USC Marshall School of Business. Eric and his wife Kim have two daughters in the Upper School. He joined the board in 2019 and chairs the strategic planning committee.
  • Tova Cohen

    Tova Cohen has been an active volunteer in the Parents’ Association (PA) as well as serving as president during the 2016-17 school year. Prior to staying home to raise her children, Tova was a marketing executive at Estee Lauder. She and her husband Kaveh have two students at Buckley, one in Lower School and one in Upper School. Tova has been on the board since 2017.
  • Leslie Goetzman

    Leslie Goetzman served as Parents’ Association president during the 1996-97 school year and as trustee from 1997 to 2007.  During that term as trustee, Leslie served on the board’s executive committee and was instrumental on the committee on trustees. She was named an emeriti trustee in 2011. She is a UCLA graduate and she and her husband Gary are parents of two Buckley alumni from the classes of 2007 and 2008.  Leslie rejoined the board in 2017 and chairs the committee on trustees.
  • Jackie Goldberg ’91

    Jackie Goldberg ’91 is Design Director of Alexa at Amazon. She is dedicated to defining exceptional customer experience and developing outstanding teams by partnering design with technology. She is an active advocate of the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, ArtCenter College of Design, and is a graduate of Yale. Jackie sits on Buckley’s Alumni Engagement Board and joined the Board of Trustees in 2020.
  • Yoshi Maruyama

    Yoshi Maruyama serves as CEO of TOCA Football, a soccer-focused experiences company. Yoshi graduated from Columbia University in New York and began his career as an investment banking associate at J.P. Morgan, then led global business development for Universal Studios and DreamWorks Animation. He also serves on the boards of SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment and Make-A-Wish Greater Los Angeles. Yoshi and his husband Art are parents to two Buckley students, one in Lower School and one in Middle School. He joined the board in 2016.
  • Alix Merkley ’75

    Alix Merkley ’75 is one of our founder Isabelle Buckley’s five grandchildren; her mother, also Isabelle, was one of Isabelle Buckley’s four children. Alix attended Buckley on the Stansbury campus during elementary school and graduated from Dominican University of California. A former school teacher, Alix currently resides in Napa where she works as an interior designer and, with her husband, owns Shackford’s Kitchen Store. She joined the board in 2016.
  • Mark Nehoray

    Mark Nehoray is a senior partner at Deloitte Tax LLP.  He served as a non-trustee member of the board’s audit committee for three years before being named a trustee in 2017. He chairs the Audit Committee. Mark and his wife Farah are parents of two Buckley alumni from the classes of 2011 and 2016.
  • Brian Nussbaum

    Brian Nussbaum is a partner in the audit and assurance practice of Deloitte & Touche LLP with more than 18 years of public accounting experience. Brian serves clients ranging from emerging growth start-up businesses to international public companies and is the leader for the Deloitte Los Angeles emerging growth company practice. He graduated from the University of Southern California with a BS in business administration and a masters in accounting. He and his wife Dana are parents to two Buckley students, one in Middle School and another in Lower School. Brian chairs the investment sub-committee of the budget and finance committee. He joined the board in 2019.
  • Peggy Procter

    Peggy Procter is a lifelong educator who presently serves as head of Echo Horizon School, a pre-K-6 school in Culver City. Peggy holds a bachelors in government and Spanish from Dartmouth College and and a masters in Spanish language and culture from Middlebury College. She is passionate about multicultural global education; diversity, equity, and inclusion;  innovative, student-centered curriculum and pedagogy; and teacher development. Peggy joined the board of trustees in 2020.
  • Karen Richardson ’95

    Karen Richardson ’95 is a former official in President Barack Obama’s administration, having served as an advisor in the White House and deputy assistant secretary in the Bureau of Public Affairs at the U.S. State Department, as associate director in the Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs, and as an advisor to Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett on international issues. Karen has a BA from Howard University, a JD from Howard University School of Law, and a masters in international affairs from the London School of Economics. Karen graduated from Buckley in 1995 and joined the board in 2016. She chairs the diversity, equity, and inclusion committee.
  • Valeria Rico-Nikolov, Vice Chair

    Valeria Rico-Nikolov is the chief marketing officer for Confie Seguros, a privately held insurance broker. A native of Spain, Valeria has a background in leadership, marketing, and strategic planning. She and her husband Nicholas are the parents of three Buckley alumni from the classes of 2009, 2017, and 2019. She joined the board in 2013, served as chair from 2018 to 2020, and currently serves as vice president and chair of the buildings and grounds committee.
  • Shari Rosenthal

    Shari Rosenthal is a partner in the Los Angeles office of Manning & Kass, where she leads the firm’s products/liability and landlord/tenant/habitability teams. She received her JD from Southwestern University School of Law following her undergraduate studies at Syracuse University. Shari served for 10 years on the board of trustees at The Willows School in Culver City, including a term as co-chair of the board. She and her wife Marlene King are parents to a Buckley Upper School student.  Shari joined the board in 2019.
  • David Sadkin, Treasurer

    David Sadkin is president of Bel Air Investment Advisors LLC, which he joined in 2006. He is responsible for advising individuals, families, endowments, and foundations, chairs the firm’s management committee, and is a voting member of the investment committee. He is a member of the Cedars-Sinai Board of Governors and serves as a co-chair of the Young Governors. He is also a member of the Temple Israel of Hollywood Board of Trustees, and serves as the assistant treasurer and a member of the finance, personnel, and endowment committees. He participated in the Geller Leadership Project at the Jewish Federation of Los Angeles and also sits on the board of directors of Terror Free Tomorrow, a Washington, DC-based non-profit organization which researches and advises on practical solutions to extremism world-wide. David and his wife Liz are parents to two Buckley students in Middle and Upper School. David joined the board in 2019. He is treasurer and chairs the budget and finance committee.
  • Chip Sellers, Chair

    Chip Sellers is the executive vice president of LaSalle Mortgage Real Estate Investors, Inc., formerly Latitude Management Real Estate Investors. He served as a trustee at Hollywood Schoolhouse, serving for several years as chair. He graduated from Carleton College with a BA in economics and received his MBA in finance from the University of California at Los Angeles. Chip and his husband Brett have two Buckley students in Upper School and Middle School. He joined the board in 2017 and became chair this year.
  • Ben Vega, Secretary

    Ben Vega is the general counsel for the Meruelo Group, a privately held company with interests in professional sports, media, gaming, banking, construction, food services, and real estate. Ben graduated from Harvard College in 1995 and Harvard Law School in 1999. He and his wife Belinda are the parents of a Lower School student. Ben joined the Buckley board in 2019 and serves as secretary.
  • Ron Wanglin '71

    Ron Wanglin '71 is the Chairman of Bolton & Company, a full-service insurance broker that handles the employee benefits, property and casualty and risk management needs for thousands of clients across the globe. A trustee from 1994–2007, Ron served as chair from 2003–2007. He and his wife Marianne are parents of two alumni from the classes of ’07 and ’10, and he himself is a Buckley alum from the Class of ’71. As an emeriti trustee, Ron returned to the board in 2018.
  • Randall Winston

    Randall Winston is a television producer and director currently working on Mixed-ish for ABC, the prequel to Blackish. He studied communications at Ohio University and served as a board member of Ohio University’s College of Communication and on the board of the Lupus Foundation of America. Randall and his husband Michael have two children and one Buckley Lower School student. He joined the board in 2020.

The Role of the Board of Trustees

As the Board of Trustees, we hold the school “in trust,” using the school’s mission statement and strategic goals as guideposts for board decisions. The head of school, our only employee, guides the school’s daily operations, administration, and staff. As a board, we are focused on its future, with the goal that school will remain a dynamic, nurturing learning community, financially healthy, and relevant for our students, their children, and their children’s children. We do this by fulfilling four responsibilities: setting the school’s strategic direction; ensuring compliance with applicable laws and regulations; accounting for both the financial stability and 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: advancement, audit, budget and finance, buildings and grounds, executive, diversity, equity, and inclusion, investment, strategic planning, and trustees.

We are current parents, alumni, parents of alumni, and friends of the school, who go through a rigorous vetting and training process facilitated by the committee on trustees. As prospective trustees are considered, we intentionally seek those who bring a diverse set of skills, talents, and experiences to the board. The composition of the board changes every year, as terms expire and new trustees are elected. Trustees can serve up to three, three-year terms and participate in at least two board committees each year of their trusteeship.

Trustees Emeriti

Mike Ahmar
George Bender
Valerie Benzimra
Ellen Buckley (deceased)
Paulette Cohen
Philip de Toledo
Anita Dymant
John Emerson
Tracy Esse
Robyn Field
Leslie Goetzman
Patricia Goldberg
Denise Gutches
James P. Higgins
Lela Hung
Martin Irani
William G. Isaac, Sr. (deceased)
John Lawrence
Maurice Marciano
James L. Owens (deceased)
Frank Price
Carol Ramsey
Fredric N. Richman
Bruce Rosenblum
Vernon Scott III (deceased)
Terry Semel
Dale Snodgrass
Arthur Swerdloff
Richard O. Thies (deceased)
Janet L. Wagner (deceased)
Ronald Wanglin ’71
Jane White (deceased)
Robert Wilson