Board of Trustees
The Board of Trustees holds the school and the mission in its trust. Its role is to protect and nurture the core values of the school while simultaneously planning and preparing for the future.
This strategic planning includes ensuring the fiscal health of the school so that it may best serve the program today and will continue to best serve future generations of students. The Board hires, supports, and empowers a Head of School who is entrusted with executing the school's mission.
The Trustees and the Head of School collaborate together to support and create an engaging, nurturing, and forward-thinking institution that holds the best interests of its children at the forefront at all times.
Our current board has 16 members comprising of nine women and seven men, (eleven of whom are current parents, three of whom are alumni parents) a faculty member, and the Head of School. Each of our Trustees brings a wealth of experience and wisdom to the Board, and together they provide a strong overall perspective.
2019-20 Board of Trustees
Abby Weintraub*, and her husband, Matt Manfredi, are parents of Sofia (5th) and Max (MA2). Abby was born and raised in New York City. She graduated from Brown University, where she received a B.A. in Psychology. She then went on to study graphic design at Pratt Institute in New York City. A designer and obsessive reader, she combined the two, and worked on staff in the art department at Alfred A. Knopf Publishing in New York City for eleven years designing book covers. In 2007 she moved to Los Angeles, and opened her own design studio, where she still designs covers, as well as other design materials.
Lara Bergthold*, Principal Partner at RALLY, is a communications strategist working with a national non-profits and foundations on progressive issues. Originally from Santa Cruz, California, Lara received a Masters in Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley. She serves as Board Chair of People for the American Way and sits on the Rock the Vote Board. Her favorite things to do involve her son Eli (6th), who enjoys fast cars, math and science, talking about stuff and playing with friends.
Elizabeth Cunningham, Faculty Representative grew up in the woods and farmland of the mid-Atlantic, north of Baltimore. She graduated from Vassar College with a BA in English, focused primarily on creative writing. Following graduation she earned master's degrees in Elementary Education and Special Education from Lesley University through Urban Teachers, and began her teaching career at Washington Latin Public Charter School in Washington D.C. in middle and high school classrooms. Moving to Los Angeles to teach at The Oaks was an exciting opportunity to deepen her practice as a progressive anti-bias educator. She is grateful for the opportunity The Oaks provides to prioritize collaboration, self-focus, and allyship in the classroom.
Bernard Friedman** is a parent of Oaks alums Akiva ('19) and Nathaniel ('17). He is a biotech entrepreneur, who in partnership with Johns Hopkins and Yale Universities, has developed commercial ventures in oncology. He concurrently follows his interest in documentaries through his production company, “Flying Mind”, which has produced three features, “Bending the Arc”, “Bogalusa Charm”, & “N of 1”
Donald E. Grant Jr.* and his wife Erika are the parents of Princeton (5th). Donald is originally from Buffalo, NY and holds a B.S. in Biology and a doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Multi-Cultural Community Psychology. Donald began his career as a middle school science teacher in Baltimore MD before overseeing a specialized branch of foster care systems for LA County Department of Mental Health. In addition to serving as the Executive Director of Mindful Training Solutions, a training and consulting firm, he currently serves as the Associate Dean of the School of Human Development at Pacific Oaks College where he oversees both Bachelors’ and Masters’ degree programs in Human Development and Advocacy & Social Justice. Through his work as a media mental health consultant and writer, Donald works to increase awareness on mental wellness issues, education, parenting, child development and socio-cultural events. Donald currently serves as a chair of the Board Governance Committee.
Adam Greenfield* is a native Angeleno, who holds a B.A. in Political Science from the University of Michigan and an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Chicago. Adam has more than 17 years of experience as a fundraising, cause marketing and corporate relations professional. Prior to starting his own consulting firm, the Do Good Consulting Corp., Adam served as Senior Director with Capital Strategies, one of the leading political and non- profit consultancies in California. He was the Director of Corporate Relations at Global Green USA, a leading environmental non-profit, and he has also held positions in the Corporate Communications department of Rolf Global, as well as Human Rights Watch. Adam lives in Hancock Park with his wife, Ellen, and their two daughters, Harper ('19) and Sasha (4th).
Ted Hamory, Head of School. Ted’s career in education began almost 30 years ago, as a bilingual teacher with Teach for America. Within a decade he had co-founded a small, bilingual charter school in downtown Long Beach, California. This school, which opened in 2000 with 70 students, brought progressive, public education to an underserved, ethnically diverse community. He then led the expansion of the school to three campuses, serving grades K-12, with 700 students. In 2010, Ted became the fourth Head of The Oaks School, a progressive K-6 school in Hollywood, where he is thrilled to help build on the school’s solid reputation for creating thoughtful, compassionate students who love to learn. Ted earned a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, a Master of Arts in Education from Pepperdine University, and a Bachelor of Arts from Vanderbilt University, where he studied Economics and Spanish. Ted enjoys spending time with his large family of six children, ranging in age from 26 to 3 years old, reading and working in his garden.
Phil Hay**, Vice Chair and his wife, Karyn Kusama, are parents of Michio ('19). Phil was born in Decatur, Illinois, and was raised mainly in the environs of Akron, Ohio. He received his BA in English Literature from Brown University and was part of the Fiction Workshop at UC Irvine, where he earned his MFA, as well as taught undergraduates in composition and fiction. Phil is a screenwriter, fiction writer, producer, and director. With his writing partner, Matt Manfredi, he wrote or co-wrote films including crazy/beautiful, R.I.P.D.,Clash of the Titans, Ride Along, Ride Along 2, and The Invitation. At The Oaks (which he loves dearly!), Phil is a member of the Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice Committee and a library volunteer.
Jessica Day* and her husband, Paul, are parents of Sydney (MA2) and a 4-year-old son, Connor. Jessica graduated with a BA in economics from Cornell University and spent 7 years at a New York-based hedge fund in various positions, including treasurer and CFO. She recently served as the treasurer of the Mom's Club of Los Feliz and is currently serving as the treasurer of the PA of The Oaks School. In addition, she currently serves on the board of Minds Matter of Los Angeles, a non-profit that mentors low-income students and helps them get into college.
Rene Rivera* has two daughters attending The Oaks School, Ava 6th grade, and Luna, 3rd grade. He was born in San Antonio, Texas, where he attended Incarnate Word College, majoring in Theater, and Psychology. He moved to New York City, where he attended, and graduated from The Juilliard School. He has worked on Broadway, Off-Broadway, Regional Theater in the U.S. and Europe. He also has worked extensively in Film, and Television. His critically acclaimed play, The King of the Desert, written by wife Stacey Martino, has been utilized as a community outreach tool for Mexican-American communities, urban youth, and essentially, all communities, as a voice of the unseen, and under privileged, seeking deeper connection with their families, and themselves. He has volunteered as an Art Therapist for Autistic children in NYC. Mr. Rivera has been a student of The Marshall Rosenberg Nonviolent Communication, and has attended several immersion workshops and retreats, including Family Heart Camp, which focuses on compassionate family living. He also completed The Parenting Educator program at Echo Parenting in Silver Lake. He is also a strong supporter of the homeless. Mr. Rivera is honored to serve on The Oaks Board, and will always have the children's, and The Oaks Schools' best interest, as his top priority.
Abby Sider* and her husband David Shayne are the parents of Nora (6th) and Molly, who graduated from the Oaks in 2018. Abby received a B.A. from McGill University in Montreal and an M.A. in Latin American and Museum Studies from NYU. She worked in publications at the Brooklyn Museum, NY; in Communications at the American Museum of Natural History, NY; and as a freelance editor for the Getty, the UCLA Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, and Los Angeles magazine in L.A. Abby later taught citizenship classes to adult immigrants, and is currently enrolled at Cal State L.A. in a TESOL M.A. program. At the Oaks, Abby has been PA President and has co-chaired EISJ, Gala, Hospitality, and Library.
Colleen McCaw Standish* and James Standish are the parents of four Oaks children, Audrey (’10), Wren (’13), Linden (’15), and current student, North (6th). Colleen is originally from Butte, Montana and has a degree in English, (Creative Writing) from USC. Before kids and parenting she worked at KPFK Radio as an Assistant to the Program Director. She also worked as an Assistant to poet, Carol Muske-Dukes, and worked as well for PEN Center West. She served as Vice-Chair and Secretary on the Board at The Neighborhood Nursery School (at various times) while her kids each attended pre-school there. She and her husband Jim opened (owned and operated) Lark Bakery in 2006, which they sold in 2011. She has been a member of The Oaks community for 17 years and has, among other things, volunteered at the school as Room Parent, Hospitality Co-Chair, Library volunteer, Art volunteer, Annual Fund committee member, and served for four years as a Library Co-Chair. She is an avid walker, orchid grower and reader of poetry.
Lisa Tarlow-Thurnauer* and her husband Thomas Thurnauer are parents of Sadie (4th). Lisa is currently President of the Hollywood Heights Association, the neighborhood that encompasses the Oaks School and the Church, and has served in that role for the past 5 years. Her years of service on the Board of the HHA dates back to 2011. Since Sadie began at The Oaks, Lisa has volunteered for the Art room, the Book Fair and the Gala. She holds a BA from Hunter College in New York City, where she went on to work in script development and as a producer on short films. After moving to Los Angeles in 1999, Lisa went on to producing still photoshoots for advertising and editorial campaigns and continuing as a freelance stylist. Lisa and her family strongly support Best Friends Society Animal Rescue. Lisa is currently co-producing the LilySarahGrace Kids Craft Fair, where all proceeds fund arts programs in public schools and gives grants to teachers to deliver instruction via arts infused inquiry based learning.
David Yorkin**, is the parent of Dinah and Dolores (Class of 2019). A Los Angeles native and graduate of Tufts University, he has worked in various capacities in the film and television business, primarily writing and producing. He is also involved in buying and selling of vintage instruments, and is passionate about teaching and exploring guitar with a focus on jazz with a handful of students. He and his wife, Alix Madigan, are actively involved with Nephcure Kidney International, an organization that funds research in search of a cure for kidney disease. He is most recent project is “Confessions of A Guitar Dealer,” published by Hal Leonard Press.
Liz Dean* and her husband, David Schulner, are the parents of Asher (6th) and Ella (3rd). Liz was born and raised in Pacific Palisades, CA. She earned her BA in Theatre from Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR. From there, she transitioned into casting and has been a Casting Director for the past 16 years. Liz has cast such shows as “nip/tuck”, “The Family”, “Designated Survivor” plus the Golden Globe winning feature film “The Kids are All Right”. She currently casts "Star Trek: Picard" on CBS All Acess, NBC’s “Good Girls”, ABC’s “The Good Doctor”, Netflix's "Firefly Lane", plus she cast the pilot of her husband’s series, “New Amsterdam”. Liz has been a member of The Oaks Community for seven years and in that time has volunteered in the Library, Art, Hospitality, plus has served as a Room Parent and on the Annual Fund Committee. Currently, she serves on the Library, Art and Alumni committees and this year she will Chair the Annual Fund committee.
Sara Morris*, and and her husband, Sam Ragsdale, are parents of Georgia (4th) and Griffin (MA1). Sara was born and raised in Delaware. She graduated from Colgate University with a B.A. in both Philosophy and Religion. An avid traveler, Sara lived in San Francisco and Hawaii after college, until finally landing in Los Angeles. After writing a few novels that never saw the light of day, Sara worked with special needs children for over a decade. After having her own children, she went back to writing. She now works as a freelance copywriter and as a writer for film & television. Sara has volunteered on multiple committees at the Oaks, as well as being a Room Ambassador for several years. She is in her second term as Co-President for the Parent Association.
Janine Hancock Jones, is Harvard-Westlake's Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. In addition to this role, Janine serves as an Associate Director of Admission. Prior to joining Harvard-Westlake, she worked as a management-side labor and employment lawyer at several large law firms, taught several legal writing classes at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law and Capital University Law School, and served as Senior Advisor/Deputy Legal Counsel to former Ohio Governor Ted Strickland focusing much of her work on supporting minority-and women-owned businesses by ensuring that the state met its legally mandated set-aside goals. She has also served on numerous non-profit boards including the Black Women Lawyers of Los Angeles, the John Mercer Langston Bar Association, Columbus Early Learning Centers, the Ohio State Bar Association on Diversity Initiatives, and the Ohio Legal Assistance Foundation to name a few. Janine and her husband, Chris (an Upper School Dean at Harvard-Westlake) are the proud parents of daughters Taylor (HW '18 & Columbia "22) and Avery (HW '23).
** Alumni Parent