2021–2022 BOARD OF DIRECTORS
|Emily Wasserman – President
Emily joined the Junior League of Oakland East Bay as a transfer from the Junior League of Chicago in the fall of 2016. Throughout her time in JLOEB she has had the opportunity to serve in a variety of leadership roles and has enjoyed the opportunity to learn and grow as a leader. She is passionate about empowering all people and works to bring that mentality and vision to her leadership role in JLOEB and beyond. Professionally Emily
|Ericka Nicholes – President
Ericka started her Junior League life in 2014 with the Junior League of Phoenix (JLP). Ericka has always been devoted to the league and served in several capacities including: Vice Chair for the Community Outreach & Advocacy committee, creating JLP’s Public Affairs Committee, and for 2 years as the Vice President of Training.In 2018, Ericka was honored with AJLI’s Rising Star award for her work in the league and commitment to change the Foster Care system. Ericka Nicholes is the current PE for Junior League of Oakland East Bay and is ready to bring the same passion and commitment to Northern California.Favorite Quote “I am so hip, even my errors are correct”
–Ego Tripping by Nikki Giovanni
|Odette Vandaveer – Executive Vice President
Odette joined the League in 2010 and has held several leadership positions including, Nominating Director, Membership Director, MarCom Chair, and Grant Writer. Odette is eager to serve the League as the Executive Vice President. Odette holds a master’s degree in Social Work from UC Berkeley. She is currently the Marketing & Communications Director at Youth Homes, a nonprofit that supports and empowers foster youth. Originally from New Zealand, Odette lives in Walnut Creek with her husband, John, and Mini Schnauzer Cooper. When Odette isn’t working or volunteering, you’ll find her binge-watching episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, hosting dinner parties, or taking a breather from it all on her yoga mat.
|Tania Hillin – Treasurer
Tania joined the Junior League of Oakland East Bay in the fall of 2020 as the New Member Class Project Lead. In her first active year, she was appointed the Assistant Treasurer and shortly transitioned into the Treasurer role. Professionally, Tania is a Loan Specialist / Underwriter with First Republic Bank and working towards a Financial Planner certification. In her free time, Tania enjoys being active — hiking, yoga, kayaking, gardening, strength training — and following a minimalist principle. Tania lives in El Cerrito with her husband, Chris, and akita, Layla.
|Susan Chritton — Secretary
Susan Chritton is a long-time member of JLOEB, having joined in 1988 while pregnant with her second son and finishing a graduate program. During her time in JLOEB, Susan has held positions in all facets of the league including President 97–98; Membership Director; every committee in the membership area – Training, Programs & Arrangements, Placement, New Member as well as Fund Development committees, Strategic Planning, and Community placements. She has been Sustainer Director twice.Susan believes in the concept that a Sustainer’s job is to help sustain the league. She has stepped in to support the Board this year as Secretary. She has coached numerous Presidents as they prepare for their leadership year. Professionally Susan is an Executive Career Coach and Author of Personal Branding for Dummies. https://www.linkedin.com/in/susanchritton/
|Ebony Lewis — Membership/Nominating Director
Ebony Lewis joined the Junior League of Oakland East Bay in 2017 as a transfer from the Junior League of Los Angeles. In Ebony’s league career, she has held a variety of leadership roles including Done In A Day Assistant, Projects Research & Development, Transfer Advisor, Placement Advisor, and is now the Nominating Director. Ebony is passionate about developing the women of the league and looking forward to working with her committee to design an equitable and inclusive leadership planning and nominating process.
Professionally, Ebony works for The Permanente Federation as a Sr. Leadership Development Consultant where she co-designs and manages physician leadership programs across eight markets. She was also elected to be the National Vice President of Kaiser Permanente’s largest business resource group, genKP.
Outside of work and serving her community, Ebony loves to travel, hang with her family, and take speedy walks with her dog Grace.
|Lisa Parker – Sustainer Director
Lisa Parker joined JLOEB in 2015 as a Sustainer Transfer. She immediately got involved, joined the Sustainer Council and served as Sustainer Mentor to the Fundraising Committee. Prior to coming to the East Bay, Lisa was a member of the Junior League of Summit, NJ for 20 years. She was an active member with roles as Membership Development VP, Nominating Committee, Transfer Chair, and many more.
Lisa has also served on several other non-profit boards including the Morristown-Beard School, Girl Scouts of the USA and the Newcomers Club. Her career was spent at Accenture as a technology and business consultant in the health services and insurance industry.
|Leila Shams – Director of Strategy:
Community Impact and Outreach
Leila joined the Junior League of Oakland East Bay in Fall 2018. Throughout her time in JLOEB, Leila has had a strong affinity towards community engagement, impact & outreach. She has shown her leadership skills by taking on a management team position in 2020–2021 and now a Board position for 2021–2022. Leila’s roles in JLOEB support her passion for developing and coaching women, supporting community organizations, and improving outreach through effective action and leadership. Professionally, Leila leverages her strategic partnership, design thinking & action-oriented mindset to progress our healthcare system.In addition, Leila is a clean beauty and lifestyle advocate working to educate, advocate & support women in their journey to understanding how the ingredients in their beauty & lifestyle products have a direct impact on their health. Leila lives in Oakland with her husband, Austin, and loves to spend time taking long walks, making time for daily meditation & has recently got back into playing tennis!
|Shonda Goward, Ed.D – Director of Strategy:
Shonda joined the Junior League of Oakland-East Bay as a transfer from the Junior League of Washington in 2020. Her prior league service has primarily been in the area of community development, and she is looking forward to learning about a different side of the League as a member of the finance committee. Professionally, Shonda is a higher education scholar-practitioner whose expertise is in studying, and creating, academic supports to promote student success. Outside of service and work, you can always spark a conversation with her by bringing up good restaurants, cooking, and baseball.