Barry M. Spector, Board Chair
Barry Spector has over 30 years of experience in the food industry, spanning diverse operating and advisory roles. Mr. Spector began his career at Acme Foods, a family-owned meat snack manufacturing company in Baltimore, Maryland. Growing it into a solid middle market company, he assisted the family in selling the business in 1991 to GoodMark Foods, maker of “Slim Jims”. Upon closing, he most notably led and managed a $200 million co-pack meat snack agreement with Frito-Lay. Mr. Spector went on to hold CEO positions in the snack foods, information technology, and venture capital industries. In 1997 he joined an investment banking firm to lead their efforts in the food and snack sector. In 1999 he was recruited to start a consumer investment banking advisory group at Ferris Baker Watts, Inc. until their acquisition by Royal Bank of Canada in 2008. Currently, Mr. Spector is a Managing Director of Creo Capital Advisors in Los Angeles.
Mr. Spector was educated at Ohio University and Johns Hopkins University, and completed the Harvard Business School’s Owner-President Management Program. He has served on the boards of Rymer Foods (NASDAQ:RYMR), La Parisienne Bakery, and the University of Maryland’s William Smith Graduate School of Business and Management-Dingman Center. Mr. Spector is a member of WPO (World Presidents Organization) and served as an officer and board member of the Baltimore-Washington YPO chapter. Currently he serves on the Boards of Saval Foods, EMD Sales Company, and Codign, Inc. In 2006, Mr. Spector moved from Baltimore, Maryland to Santa Barbara and joined the Foodbank board.
“I have spent the last 9 years as a trustee of the Foodbank trying to make a difference in the organization’s goal of eradicating hunger in Santa Barbara Country. My personal goal is to use my abilities to guide the actions of the Foodbank. I believe in the mission.”
Frank Abatemarco, Vice Chair
Frank Abatemarco, a longtime Montecito Resident has been successfully selling Montecito Luxury Properties for 10 years with Sotheby’s International Realty.
Prior to moving to Santa Barbara Frank was an award winning Television Writer and Producer who wrote a variety of Television drama series and Movies for Television including Star Trek, The Next Generation.
Frank recognizes the importance of giving back to the community and he is active in a variety of charitable organizations. He is the past Chairman of the board of trustees for the Santa Barbara Foodbank. He is on the board of directors for Montecito Association and serves on the Land Use Committee. He is married to Toni Abatemarco and they have two children; Gina, a recent graduate of NYU Film School and Christopher who will be attending Embry- Riddle.
George Thurlow, Emeritus
George Thurlow has held the position of Assistant Vice Chancellor for Alumni Affairs at UC Santa Barbara since 2007. He spent 30 years in journalism, ultimately returning to Santa Barbara as publisher of the Santa Barbara Independent in 1994. He is the past chair of the Board of Directors of the Santa Barbara Foundation, the Fund for Santa Barbara, the Conference Visitor and Film Commission, the UC Santa Barbara Alumni Association and the Downtown Organization. He and his wife Denise have three children, Kendra Gaete, who is raising two children in Santa Barbara; George IV who is an assistant vice president at Business First Bank; and Lincoln, who is finishing graduate school in computer engineering at UC Santa Cruz.
Deborah Adam owns and operates Innovative Produce and Faith Farming, a producer of conventional and organic vegetables and strawberries in the Santa Maria Valley, with her husband, George Adam. Born and raised in Yorba Linda, CA where her family was in the citrus farming business, Deborah moved to San Luis Obispo earning her B. S. in Dietetics and Food Administration from Cal Poly. Deborah has been actively involved in various community activities including youth track and field as well St. Louis de Montfort’s parish Finance Council and PTO board.
Deborah and George have lived in Orcutt for 29 years and have 4 children. Weekends are spent enjoying the beautiful Central Coast and attending various Ag related functions.
George L. Bean, Principal
Bean is an owner and original founding member of Capital West Associates, LLC (“CWA”). During the merger of CWA with SKB, Mr. Bean was a Principal of SKB, and for 2 ½ years was focused primarily on Asset Management in the western region. Additionally, Mr. Bean was responsible for investor relations for specific high net-worth investors and deal structuring on numerous investments. Prior to forming CWA, Mr. Bean spent three years at a Pacific Northwest based boutique investment advisor as Senior Vice President of the Private Investment Division with assets of $600 million. During his tenure there, he oversaw the restructuring and management of their real estate equity and mortgage products. He also was responsible for the creation and implementation of a new real estate mortgage product for their existing pension fund clients. Previously, Mr. Bean spent 12 years with MIG Financial Corporation in San Francisco (and its predecessor company, Norris, Beggs and Simpson) handling a wide range of real estate issues at the equity, debt and property level for a varied real estate portfolio. The portfolio included a large group of non-performing and non-traditional real estate assets. Additionally, Mr. Bean spent two years as an independent contractor with the real estate division of Wells Fargo Bank and six years as a partner in several private partnerships in San Francisco, working with real estate and other private investments. George has both a B.S. and an MBA from the University of San Francisco, and over 25 years of real estate-related experience.
Currently, Mr. Bean serves as a Trustee and advisor to several families with commercial/residential real estate interests. He works closely with the other professionals involved namely, lawyers, accountants and investment managers to ensure that the client(s) current goals and objectives are met as well as the successful planning for the transition of wealth and family values.
“I joined the Board of the Foodbank to better understand and thereby hopefully help to lessen the serious food insecurity issues facing many families and individuals in Santa Barbara County.”
Peter N. Brown
Peter N. Brown is a partner at the law firm of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck in Santa Barbara, and was a partner in the law firm of Hatch & Parent before that firm’s merger with Brownstein in 2008. His legal practice emphasizes land use, environmental law, and public law. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from Amherst College and his law degree from the University of Southern California, where he was an editor of the Southern California Law Review. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Music Academy of the West and The Granada Theater, and currently is Vice President of the Goleta Valley Chamber of Commerce. He and his wife Suzanne, a retired music teacher of the Goleta Union School District, have lived in Santa Barbara for 38 years, and raised their children, Chris and Matt here.
Dianne, a certified diabetic educator, works as a Physician Assistant (PA-C) at Dawes Family Medicine in Santa Maria. She graduated fromUCSB in 1994 with a BS in Biopsychology and from Butler University in Indianapolis with a BS in Health Sciences/ Physician Assistant.
Working with the Foodbank is her first big leap into volunteerism. She moved to the central coast in 2006 to be closer to family. She enjoys the local areas through hiking, going to plays and concerts and spending the weekends in parks, beaches and wineries.
Mr. Narded Eguiluz grew up in San Luis Obispo County and graduated from Cal Poly, SLO with a B.S. in Agribusiness. After college, he worked for his family’s farm, managing the operations and working in the fields. He eventually moved to Santa Cruz for 8 years to pursue a career with a leading horticulture company, overseeing the processing and distribution of flower bulbs. Wanting to return to his agricultural roots, Mr. Eguiluz moved to the Central Coast and now resides in Santa Maria with his wife and their 2 dogs. He is currently the District Manager at the Driscoll’s Santa Maria facility, and an active member of Driscoll’s Philanthropy Grants Committee. Mr. Eguiluz is excited to be on the Foodbank Board of Trustees to help share his distribution knowledge and give back to his community.
Wayne has lived in the Santa Maria Valley for over twenty-five years and is a Vice President at Farm Credit West. During his lending career he has worked in Ventura and Carpinteria. His job is to provide short-term farm operating loans, equipment leases and farmland mortgage to local growers, ranchers and vineyard operators. Wayne received his BS degree in Agriculture from California State University, Chico with a focus in business management.
Wayne developed his sense of community involvement from raising his three children in a small community. He and his wife, Cynthia, were involved as leaders in the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts Organizations. Wayne has been a member of the Santa Maria Noontime Kiwanis Club for twenty-four years. He served on the Board of Directors for several years and was awarded Member of Year for his volunteer work and fund raising efforts. When Wayne is not working, he can be found relaxing on his small farm or up in the Sierras hiking or skiing.
Cindy Halstead, Treasurer
Before joining the Channel Islands YMCA, Cindy worked as an auditor for two large accounting firms; Ernst & Young, in Los Angeles, and Deloitte & Touche in Oxnard, where she earned her CPA certification and developed her accounting and audit skills. During her career in public accounting, she gained insight into many different industries and later discovered a passion for nonprofit organizations.
In 1992 she joined the Channel Islands YMCA’s finance department. She was instrumental in restructuring the department and converting the organization to computerized operating and accounting systems. After many years as Controller, she became Chief Financial Officer in 2006.
Cindy has served as board treasurer for Girls Inc. of Carpinteria and treasurer for the board of the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County. While serving as a board member, she discovered she could use the governance and accounting experience learned at the Y to benefit other local nonprofit organizations.
Cindy has a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and a Master of Business Administration from California State University, Northridge. In addition to being a Certified Public Accountant, she holds the title of Chartered Global Management Accountant, and is a member of the AICPA and CalCPA.
“The Foodbank of Santa Barbara County is an incredibly important organization. Not only does it provide much need food to individuals and other nonprofit organizations in Santa Barbara County, it provides the necessary education to make healthy lifestyle choices for all ages.”
John La Puma, M.D.
John La Puma M.D. is a board-certified internist and an expert in nutrition and the lifestyle and dietary management of obesity and common chronic diseases. He is on a mission to discover the personal medical problems that stop you from looking and feeling your best, and to help you Refuel® your body with what you eat, to become your best you. The first physician in the US to teach a cooking and nutrition course in a US medical school, at SUNY with Michael Roizen M.D., Dr. La Puma is cofounder of ChefMD®, inventor of GlutenFreeQuiz.com, and director of CHEF Clinic®. He co-hosted the national cable weekly series Health Corner for Lifetime TV for nearly four years, recently with Leeza Gibbons and Joan Lunden, and will host ChefMD Shorts with Dr John La Puma on PBS from 2014 through 2016. He is the author of the forthcoming (Men donʼt diet, men…) REFUEL® (Crown/Harmony, 2014) and author or coauthor of two NY Times best-sellers: ChefMDʼs Big Book of Culinary Medicine (Crown, 2008) and RealAge Diet (HarperCollins, 2001). Also a professionally trained chef, Dr. La Puma is nationally recognized for his scientifically-sound and engaging approach to food and health. He sees patients and is based in Santa Barbara, California.
TWITTER @johnlapuma | LINKEDIN http://linkedin/in/johnlapuma | FACEBOOK http://facebook.com/drjohnlapuma | www.drjohnlapuma.com
“Our Foodbank understands that poor quality food sickens people and makes them hungrier. To help them get better, the Foodbank is leading the way locally and nationally in identifying food insecurity as a medical problem. As a practicing physician, I am grateful for this vision, and for the resources the Foodbank provides which I can prescribe to people whose need is not for another medication, but for whole, nourishing, increasingly local foods.”
Carol Poundstone Olson, CFA, Consultant
Ms. Olson has a consulting business which conducts independent compliance reviews for Investment Advisory firms. She has over 25 years of experience in the securities business. Prior to starting her own firm, she served as Chief Compliance Officer and Treasurer of Santa Barbara Asset Management. In addition to her compliance experience she has as Chief Financial Officer for various firms. She has a BS in Finance and Economics from the University of Arizona. She obtained her Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 1999. Carol moved to Santa Barbara in 2006 with her husband, Stephen. Carol has been actively involved in various community activities including Santa Barbara Museum of Art Women’s board, Girls Inc.
“No one in our country should have to go hungry and the Foodbank is an important provider of nutritious food to those that need it. I applaud the Foodbank’s focus on nutrition education and various studies on the effects of nutrition on overall health.”
Barbara is founder and President of Brylen Technologies, a calibration laboratory established in 1985. Over her career Barbara has been involved in the local community. She participated in Leadership Santa Barbara County program. She was a mediator for the West Side Community Organization. She is a Senior Member of the American Society for Quality, a member of the National Conference of Standards Laboratory International and a charter member of its 174 writing committee helping establish the International Standard for accreditation for calibration laboratories. She is a member and served as president of the Science and Engineering Council, Santa Barbara, was a committee member and chair for the City of Santa Barbara’s Community Development/Human Resources for several years. She is a charter member of the National Association of Women Business Owners-SB chapter and served as its secretary for two years. In May 2011 NAWBO-SB awarded her with the prestigious honor of Entrepreneur of the Year in the field of Technology. She is a Rotarian in Goleta Noontime Club and has served on the board as secretary, international chair and was president during 2008-2009. She was on the Board of Legal Aid Foundation and served as its secretary, treasurer, and President 2009 through 2011. Barbara works out several mornings a week, walks her two rescue dogs daily and acts in community theaters when the opportunity arises.
Erwin has been a Santa Barbara resident for almost 20 years working in the construction industry after graduating with a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from California State University, Fresno. While managing projects throughout the Tri-Counties, he furthered his education at the University of California, Santa Barbara where he earned his Project Management Certification. He is currently working as the Chief Estimator for Frank Schipper Construction Co., a Santa Barbara based general contractor that specializes in commercial construction. While being a board member at the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County, he also serves as a State Director for the Associated General Contractors of California as well as a board member for the AGC Tri-Counties District, where he served as chair in 2010. Dedication to giving back to the community and making a difference are reasons why he remains active in local and statewide organizations.
Vibeke Weiland, Secretary
Vibeke Weiland is a certified Nutritional Therapy Practitioner practicing at Santa Barbara Wellness for Life in Santa Barbara. She received her M.A. in behavioral psychology from the University of California, San Diego and also holds a certification as a Specialist in Fitness Nutrition from the International Sports Sciences Association. Vibeke believes in encouraging optimal health through a lifestyle aligned with what homo sapiens evolved to do: eat real food as nature provides it, move, sleep soundly, be outdoors and share in community. She joined the board in 2013 with the goal of supporting the Foodbank’s efforts to develop sound nutritional policies and provide vital nutritional education to the residents of Santa Barbara County. Her professional affiliations include the Nutritional Therapy Association, the International Sports Services Association and the National Association of Nutritional Professionals. She is an avid hiker and cook. She and her husband have two teenaged children who good-naturedly tolerate- and frequently even enjoy- her kitchen experiments.
“As a nutritional therapy practitioner, I understand the profound impact that food quality has on an individual’s health and ability to function. The Foodbank’s mission of providing real, whole food, along with the necessary food literacy education to go with it is what inspired me to join the board. If the Foodbank’s vision is realized, we will have impacted the public health—and thus the healthcare, education and economic systems—of this county in measurable ways.”