Promotions & New Roles Announced to Support Strategic Plan

August 03, 2021

Judy Sparacino has been promoted to programs manager. Judy joined the foundation in 2007 as program coordinator, and has been a valued and critical team member supporting the fellowship program. In her expanded role, she will continue to support the fellowship program and take on new responsibilities associated with the fellow selection process and supporting the domestic and international seminars, as well as serving as the foundation’s archivist. Judy will also take on more duties related to our efforts to sustain and expand the D.C. and CA Exchange programs, working with our exchange programs consultant.

Deanna van Klaveren (32) has been promoted to alumni engagement manager. Deanna joined the foundation in 2019 as a part-time alumni coordinator, following many years of service on the Alumni Council (AC) and as a member of the board of directors. Her support of the AC and alumni over the past two years has been critical to engaging our more than 1,300 alumni. Deanna’s new full-time role will provide expanded service and opportunities for growth and connection to our alumni, as envisioned in the strategic plan.

Emily Lazzerini has moved into the new role of development coordinator. Emily joined the foundation in 2010 as enterprise coordinator and has been responsible for maintaining all donor files and records, amongst other duties. Emily’s expertise related to our donors and endowment funds has served an essential need as our foundation’s investment accounts have grown over the last decade. Her new role will focus critical support on the foundation’s expanding development program.

Darlene Din (35) has joined the team as exchange programs consultant, providing guidance and assistance to the staff and exchange programs committees, following many years of volunteer and contractor support to the foundation. She will also support staff and the Ed Team related to the domestic and international seminars, organize exchange activities and develop and propose exchange program expansion options in 2022, consistent with the strategic plan.

These new and expanded roles are critical to the foundation’s ability to meet our goals related to our strategic plan’s critical priorities, living our mission of “Growing leaders who make a difference,” embodying our values of integrity, excellence and respect and achieving our vision to become “Leaders united to strengthen California agriculture and sustainably supply the world.” We look forward to keeping you informed of our progress.

Feel free to contact Dwight Ferguson at or (831) 585-1030 with any questions about these changes.