Archive | Our Team

Francine Castanon, Associate

Francine Castanon, Associate

Francine Castanon is an Associate with California Consulting and will be responsible for client relations and business development in Ventura, Santa Barbara, and San Luis Obispo Counties. Francine is a U.S. Army combat veteran and holds a B.A. from Cal State Northridge. Francine is currently finishing her Masters Degree in public finance. She has experience working for State Board of Equalization Member Fiona Ma and currently serves on the City of Oxnard Homeless Commission as a Commissioner. California Consulting is proud to welcome Francine to our team.

JC Rivers- Project Manager

JC Rivers has a Ph.D. in Leadership and Organization from Columbia University’s Teacher’s College.  With over 30 years in leadership positions, her professional experience, expertise, and interest are in health care and education management, organization development, capacity- and infrastructure- building and social responsibility.  During the 1990s, Dr. Rivers was founding staff for several government-sponsored, and commercial managed care organizations, and have extensive experience in human services, school systems, and higher education.  She has been a guest speaker with forums on public health, urban education, and grant and revenue development.  She currently serves as a member of several boards of directors.  Dr. River’s has a passion for social justice and championing causes for the disenfranchised and underserved urban and rural communities.

Mario Santoyo-Senior Associate

Mario Santoyo is California Consulting’s Senior Associate in the Central Valley. Mario is a civil engineering graduate from the University of the Pacific Stockton, where he served as associated student body President for UOP’s School of Engineering.

Mario retired as the first Executive Director for the San Joaquin Valley Water Infrastructure Authority who represents five Counties (Merced, Madera, Fresno, Tulare and kings). Mario has 38 years of professional experience in the water resources field, serving as a civil engineer for the U.S Bureau of Reclamation and as the Assistant General Manager for the Friant Water Authority, where he represented 21 Central Valley Project water agencies from Merced County to Kern County. While at Friant he was technical lead on the following projects:

  • Friant/NRDC San Joaquin River Restoration pre-settlement studies
  • Friant and Metropolitan WD Water Management Partnership
  • USBR Upper San Joaquin River Basin Storage Investigation Studies
  • 2009 Comprehensive Water Legislative Package

He was a co-founder and served as Vice President for the Clean Water and Jobs for California Coalition representing State wide organizations for water, business, labor and Agriculture. He also is the Executive Director for both the California Latino Water Coalition (Coalition) and it’s Foundation, these non-profit organizations formed to enhance Latinos’ policy input in issues related to California’s water resources

  • Appointed by Governor Schwarzenegger to the State Parks and Recreation Commission, serving one term as Vice Chair of the Commission.
  • Chairman of the Fresno County Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO)
  • Commissioner on Fresno State University Agriculture and Water Commissions
  • Served as Planning Commissioner for the City of Reedley and Selma

Adelaide Hsu, Project Manager

Ms. Adelaide (Adel) Hsu is our newest project manager. Adelaide (Adel) Hsu is an experienced program administrator, coordinator and grant writer with over 15 years of experience for public entities.

Ms. Hsu has worked with agencies in Northern and Southern California and has successfully written applications to obtain over $5M in new funding from private, County, State, and Federal sources and has worked with City, County, and non-profit agencies.

She has also designed programs, policies and procedures that strike a balance with policy priorities, grant requirements and laws. She is committed to leveraging the strength of each agency and works with them to create realistic goal-driven plans that maximize the use of the grants and grant funds to enrich communities.

Ms. Hsu holds an MA in Public Administration from Brandman (Chapman) University, and a BA in Mass Communications from Siena College, Philippines.

Rob Lipton, Project Manager

Rob Lipton, Project Manager

Rob Lipton is a Project Manager with California Consulting. Mr. Lipton  has extensive experience writing foundation, community and research grants at the local, state and federal level.  Over the course of his career,  he has obtained, on his own, or with others, over $30,000,000 in grant-related funding. Much of his work has been with underserved, diverse and vulnerable populations in CA, across the US, and internationally.  Rob has worked in non-profit settings, writing and obtaining funding for a variety of foundation, programmatic and research needs.  Most recently, he has worked as the grants program director for a hospital group where much of our work was community based.

 

 

Ellen Mata, Senior Associate

Ellen Mata is California Consulting’s Senior Associate.  Ellen has over 20 years of experience working with government agencies, non-profit organizations, for-profit businesses and consulting firms to create quality grants and proposals.

Ellen’s most recent experience includes working as a Grant Writer for the Fresno Regional Workforce Investment Board.  In that capacity, Ellen was responsible for grant research and preparation.  She wrote several State and Federal grants during her time there.  Ellen also served as Development Manager, Grants and Sponsorships, with the Fresno Metropolitan Museum of Art & Science.  In that role, Ellen was responsible for writing the Museum’s grants and grant reports, developing sponsorships, cultivating donor relationships, managing the Museum’s business membership program and administering the REVEAS ASK Science mini-grant program.

Ellen graduated from Kingsburg High School and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of California, Santa Barbara.  She lives in Fresno with her husband, Daniel, and their children.

Jaimie Lewis, Project Manager

Jaimie Lewis serves California Consulting with a background in finance, budgeting, and grant writing. Prior to joining California Consulting, Jaimie served as a grant writer and financial analyst for Omnitrans, San Bernardino County’s transportation provider. Jaimie’s employment history includes work for the County of San Bernardino as a public health grant auditor, the State Board of Equalization as a sales and use tax auditor and a small business owner for several businesses she founded. Jaimie has extensive knowledge in post-award management and milestone reporting. Working with cities like the City of Rialto and numerous non-profits in the Southern California region, Jaimie has written and assisted in the grant management and monitoring efforts for many organizations.

A graduate of California State University, Northridge, Jaimie earned her Bachelor’s Degree in business administration and her Master’s Degree in public administration. She has written competitive grants and discretionary grants to aid in the awarding of over $48 million in federal, state and private funding.

A native of the Inland Empire, Jaimie currently resides in Rialto, California. Married to her high school sweetheart, Jaimie is wife and mom of five children, four girls and one baby boy born in 2018.

Susan Phipps Carr, Project Manager

Susan Phipps Carr, Project Manager

Susan Phipps Carr is a Southern California native with over 30 years of grant writing experience. She has written the Los Angeles City Housing Authority and Los Angeles County Parks and Recreation as well nonprofit organizations in California and Texas.

 Ms. Carr has secured over $165,000,000 in grant programs and comes to California consulting with extensive knowledge in Redevelopment Agencies, Housing Department, Community Development Departments, and State HCD Programs.

 Ms. Carr has a Master’s degree in Human Services and Human Development at Pepperdine, University.

Derek Rojas- Associate- Southern California

Derek Rojas is a Southern California Associate for California Consulting. Derek has been in the solid waste industry for over 27 years, the majority of that time spent with Valley Vista Services, serving in various capacities. He began as their sales and Marketing Manager, with his role evolving to focus on business development and public relations. Derek enjoys the process of promoting and growing a business through positive representation at various trade shows and government organizations.
He enjoys the responsibility of maintaining, improving, and creating new business relationships with school districts, city, county, state, and federal officials.
He has served on several chamber boards and philanthropic committees and currently volunteers his time with Meals on Wheels and local service clubs in the San Gabriel Valley.
Derek and his wife live in Corona and have one daughter who is away at college.

Eduardo Vega- Project Manager

Eduardo Vega is a Project Manager for California Consulting.  Eduardo has over twenty-five years of experience in health, human services, and government agencies, including expertise in management, strategy, policy, communications, program development, research and evaluation, grantsmanship and organizational development.

Highly successful as a resource development expert, Vega’s grant proposals have often significantly outscored competitors, resulting in contract awards from multiple state and federal agencies including the National Institutes of Health, the World Health Organization and others.

In addition to over a decade at the executive leadership level in non-profit, human services and government agencies, Vega has been a California State Commissioner (2005-2011), a Fulbright specialist, and consultant to the federal government through the department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the White House Office of Science and Technology, and others.

For his service he has been recognized by the State of California, the US Office of the Surgeon General, the United States Senate, the US State Department, the nation of Fiji and the Office of the White House of President Obama. Vega holds an MA in Psychology from New School for Social Research.