Deb Burgin    Executive Director   Deb comes to Ready, Set, Read! with 20 years of experience working for nonprofit organizations in Los Angeles County doing corporate board development and engagement, fundraising planning and implementation, program planning and evaluation, and outreach and education.  During her tenure as Executive Director of Los Angeles Diaper Drive, she successfully grew the organization to become the largest diaper bank in the country. Deb also served as Director of Mission Programs at Susan G. Komen Los Angeles, and at the American Cancer Society in Los Angeles as Director of Health Programs.  Deb received her Masters of Public Health (MPH) from California State University, Northridge in 2003, and completed her internship at UCLA.

Deb Burgin

Executive Director

Deb comes to Ready, Set, Read! with 20 years of experience working for nonprofit organizations in Los Angeles County doing corporate board development and engagement, fundraising planning and implementation, program planning and evaluation, and outreach and education.

During her tenure as Executive Director of Los Angeles Diaper Drive, she successfully grew the organization to become the largest diaper bank in the country. Deb also served as Director of Mission Programs at Susan G. Komen Los Angeles, and at the American Cancer Society in Los Angeles as Director of Health Programs.

Deb received her Masters of Public Health (MPH) from California State University, Northridge in 2003, and completed her internship at UCLA.

Maria Elena Hernandez    Parent Educator   As an immigrant to the US, a product of the Los Angeles public school system, a graduate of LACC and UCLA, and a teacher in the LAUSD — Maria has unique insight into the needs of our students.  She has expertise in bilingual-bicultural ed. & ESL, literacy, cooperation/team-building, social justice, and ecology, working extensively with children and adults.  Maria retired after 27 years with the LAUSD as a teacher and administrator. In her spare time, she volunteers at local elementary schools.

Maria Elena Hernandez

Parent Educator

As an immigrant to the US, a product of the Los Angeles public school system, a graduate of LACC and UCLA, and a teacher in the LAUSD — Maria has unique insight into the needs of our students.

She has expertise in bilingual-bicultural ed. & ESL, literacy, cooperation/team-building, social justice, and ecology, working extensively with children and adults.

Maria retired after 27 years with the LAUSD as a teacher and administrator. In her spare time, she volunteers at local elementary schools.

Maylin Ramirez    Parent Educator   Maylin Ramirez has been in the field of education for over 40 years. As a parent and grandmother, she understands the importance of a parent's role in creating and fostering a nurturing environment for their children.  She started her career as a teacher's assistant for Aragon Elementary School and concluded her career as an Early Education Center principal for LAUSD. She continues to attend workshops and courses to continue her education and stay involved in current breakthroughs and trends in Child Development.  Maylin holds a Bachelor's Degree in Child Development as well as a Master's of Science in Child Development.

Maylin Ramirez

Parent Educator

Maylin Ramirez has been in the field of education for over 40 years. As a parent and grandmother, she understands the importance of a parent's role in creating and fostering a nurturing environment for their children.

She started her career as a teacher's assistant for Aragon Elementary School and concluded her career as an Early Education Center principal for LAUSD. She continues to attend workshops and courses to continue her education and stay involved in current breakthroughs and trends in Child Development.

Maylin holds a Bachelor's Degree in Child Development as well as a Master's of Science in Child Development.

 
Sherriljean Thompson    Parent Educator   Sherriljean Thompson is a 40-year veteran bilingual elementary teacher. Additionally for 15 years she served as an adjunct professor In the Teacher Education and Graduate Multicultural Education Departments at California State University, Dominguez Hills.  Sherriljean has been married to a retired Naval Officer for 43 years, has four sons and five grandchildren. She continues to teach piano to students of many ages.

Sherriljean Thompson

Parent Educator

Sherriljean Thompson is a 40-year veteran bilingual elementary teacher. Additionally for 15 years she served as an adjunct professor In the Teacher Education and Graduate Multicultural Education Departments at California State University, Dominguez Hills.

Sherriljean has been married to a retired Naval Officer for 43 years, has four sons and five grandchildren. She continues to teach piano to students of many ages.

Nancy Tiller    Parent Educator   Nancy was a bilingual teacher for the Los Angeles Unified School District for 24 years. She has taught The School Readiness Language Program ( SRLDP ), Kindergarten and Transitional Kindergarten. She was a mentor teacher for 18 years and supported more than 20 new teachers as they began their careers.  Although she retired in 2013, Ms. Tiller volunteers as a Preschool story hour teacher for the Burbank Unified School District and as a music teacher for LAUSD. She believes that music, movement and language development work together to improve literacy fluency.

Nancy Tiller

Parent Educator

Nancy was a bilingual teacher for the Los Angeles Unified School District for 24 years. She has taught The School Readiness Language Program ( SRLDP ), Kindergarten and Transitional Kindergarten. She was a mentor teacher for 18 years and supported more than 20 new teachers as they began their careers.

Although she retired in 2013, Ms. Tiller volunteers as a Preschool story hour teacher for the Burbank Unified School District and as a music teacher for LAUSD. She believes that music, movement and language development work together to improve literacy fluency.

 
 

 

Board of Directors

Merrily Weiss    Founder   Merrily Weiss founded Ready, Set, Read! in 1999 to address the need for literacy resources and training in Los Angeles area preschools. To develop the organization and programs, she drew upon her years of experience as a multi media producer/developer and as a mother and classroom volunteer.

Merrily Weiss

Founder

Merrily Weiss founded Ready, Set, Read! in 1999 to address the need for literacy resources and training in Los Angeles area preschools. To develop the organization and programs, she drew upon her years of experience as a multi media producer/developer and as a mother and classroom volunteer.

Ravi Gill    Board Chair   Ravi is an equity research specialist at Capital World Investors covering the energy sector. He has ten years of investment industry experience, and has been with Capital for the last four years. Prior to Capital, Ravi worked at Goldman Sachs and Morgan Keegan. He holds the CFA and CPA designations and earned his bachelor’s in finance and master’s in accounting from Baruch College of the City University of New York.

Ravi Gill

Board Chair

Ravi is an equity research specialist at Capital World Investors covering the energy sector. He has ten years of investment industry experience, and has been with Capital for the last four years. Prior to Capital, Ravi worked at Goldman Sachs and Morgan Keegan. He holds the CFA and CPA designations and earned his bachelor’s in finance and master’s in accounting from Baruch College of the City University of New York.

Chris Bosco   Chris’ passion for our mission comes from all the time he spent reading to his son who is now 12 years old and an avid reader.  Chris has 14 years of business and strategy experience since receiving his Masters from UCLA Anderson School of Business. He is a senior-level executive with 20+ years of experience working for billion dollar companies to entrepreneurial companies. He also relocated to Prague where he was responsible for for the content and distribution division within Central European Media Enterprises (NASDQ), a vertically integrated media company across seven countries in Europe.  Chris’ undergraduate degree is from UC Santa Barbara where he earned a B.S. in Economics with an emphasis in Accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Chris Bosco

Chris’ passion for our mission comes from all the time he spent reading to his son who is now 12 years old and an avid reader.

Chris has 14 years of business and strategy experience since receiving his Masters from UCLA Anderson School of Business. He is a senior-level executive with 20+ years of experience working for billion dollar companies to entrepreneurial companies. He also relocated to Prague where he was responsible for for the content and distribution division within Central European Media Enterprises (NASDQ), a vertically integrated media company across seven countries in Europe.

Chris’ undergraduate degree is from UC Santa Barbara where he earned a B.S. in Economics with an emphasis in Accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Lisa Delanty   Lisa’s passion for early education began in college when she volunteered at a Head Start center.  For the last 12 years, she has worked at Mattel where she continues to be inspired by child development through play. Her experience includes product approvals, project management, creative operations, line creation, brand management, marketing, e-commerce, licensing, contract negotiation and team development. She is currently a Sr. Manager for Global Consumer Products bringing beloved children’s brands like Barbie, Hot Wheels and Fisher-Price to life through brand partnerships.  Lisa has an MBA with emphasis in Global Business from Pepperdine University. Her undergraduate degree was completed at Santa Clara University where she earned a B.S. in Anthropology and a B.A. in Spanish. She lives in Redondo Beach with her husband and two small children.

Lisa Delanty

Lisa’s passion for early education began in college when she volunteered at a Head Start center.

For the last 12 years, she has worked at Mattel where she continues to be inspired by child development through play. Her experience includes product approvals, project management, creative operations, line creation, brand management, marketing, e-commerce, licensing, contract negotiation and team development. She is currently a Sr. Manager for Global Consumer Products bringing beloved children’s brands like Barbie, Hot Wheels and Fisher-Price to life through brand partnerships.

Lisa has an MBA with emphasis in Global Business from Pepperdine University. Her undergraduate degree was completed at Santa Clara University where she earned a B.S. in Anthropology and a B.A. in Spanish. She lives in Redondo Beach with her husband and two small children.


“Jack” Hagop Tutundjian   Jack has a passion for reading and seeing the benefits of early reading on his son and daughter firsthand has drawn him to the power of the mission.  Jack is a Fixed Income Research Associate at Capital Group Companies covering the state and local government and higher education sectors. He has been with Capital Group for 15 years and was previously in Global Investment Control prior to moving to research.  Jack has a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from California State University, Long Beach and holds a Chartered Financial Analyst designation. He is based in West Los Angeles.

“Jack” Hagop Tutundjian

Jack has a passion for reading and seeing the benefits of early reading on his son and daughter firsthand has drawn him to the power of the mission.

Jack is a Fixed Income Research Associate at Capital Group Companies covering the state and local government and higher education sectors. He has been with Capital Group for 15 years and was previously in Global Investment Control prior to moving to research.

Jack has a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from California State University, Long Beach and holds a Chartered Financial Analyst designation. He is based in West Los Angeles.

Rieko Mendez    Board Chair   Rieko Mendez is a business leader with over 20 years of experience at Toyota North America. She brings strengths in ideation and ability to simplify complex business issues, as well as experience with adult learning, board presentations, project management, and leading cross-organizational teams.   Reiko has an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management and a B.A. and M.A. in International Policy Studies from Stanford University.

Rieko Mendez

Board Chair

Rieko Mendez is a business leader with over 20 years of experience at Toyota North America. She brings strengths in ideation and ability to simplify complex business issues, as well as experience with adult learning, board presentations, project management, and
leading cross-organizational teams.

Reiko has an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management and a B.A. and M.A. in
International Policy Studies from Stanford University.

Diana Su   Diana is a project manager in the construction industry with seven years of experience. At Suffolk Construction, she oversaw the construction of two large high-rise residential projects in the San Francisco Bay Area. Diana also worked at Webcor Builders, working on the virtual design and construction aspects for projects such as the Transbay Terminal and SFMOMA. She was born and raised in San Francisco and relocated to Los Angeles in 2018. She heard about Ready, Set, Read and felt their mission resonated with her values and passion for reading and always learning.  Diana received her Bachelor’s Degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from University of California, Berkeley. She has a Master’s Degree in Construction Engineering and Management from Stanford University.

Diana Su

Diana is a project manager in the construction industry with seven years of experience. At Suffolk Construction, she oversaw the construction of two large high-rise residential projects in the San Francisco Bay Area. Diana also worked at Webcor Builders, working on the virtual design and construction aspects for projects such as the Transbay Terminal and SFMOMA. She was born and raised in San Francisco and relocated to Los Angeles in 2018. She heard about Ready, Set, Read and felt their mission resonated with her values and passion for reading and always learning.

Diana received her Bachelor’s Degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from University of California, Berkeley. She has a Master’s Degree in Construction Engineering and Management from Stanford University.


Sarah Wright-Killinger   Sarah is a digital media executive who has worked at the Los Angeles Times, Yahoo,  and Disney. She believes in the power reading gives young children by helping them unlock their  imaginations and learn lifelong skills.  Sarah received her MBA from Pepperdine University and her B.A. in Journalism from Ithaca College.  Sarah lives with her husband and two young kids.

Sarah Wright-Killinger

Sarah is a digital media executive who has worked at the Los Angeles Times, Yahoo,

and Disney. She believes in the power reading gives young children by helping them unlock their

imaginations and learn lifelong skills.

Sarah received her MBA from Pepperdine University and her B.A. in Journalism from Ithaca College.

Sarah lives with her husband and two young kids.

Joyce Chang   Joyce currently serves as Director HR Strategy and Operations at Activision. In this role, she helps create and deliver the strategic people agenda, ensuring it’s tied to the company’s long-term business goals; leads cross-functional initiatives focused on company culture, employee engagement, diversity & inclusion, talent development, and organizational design.  Prior to joining Activision, Joyce was AVP of Transformation and Communications at Frontier Communications where she was responsible for HR initiatives. For the majority of her career, Joyce was a human capital consultant with Deloitte Consulting, where she delivered large-scale organizational transformations.  Joyce graduated with a B.A. in Communications and Film Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. She earned an MBA from UCLA Anderson’s School of Management.

Joyce Chang

Joyce currently serves as Director HR Strategy and Operations at Activision. In this role, she helps create and deliver the strategic people agenda, ensuring it’s tied to the company’s long-term business goals; leads cross-functional initiatives focused on company culture, employee engagement, diversity & inclusion, talent development, and organizational design.

Prior to joining Activision, Joyce was AVP of Transformation and Communications at Frontier Communications where she was responsible for HR initiatives. For the majority of her career, Joyce was a human capital consultant with Deloitte Consulting, where she delivered large-scale organizational transformations.

Joyce graduated with a B.A. in Communications and Film Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. She earned an MBA from UCLA Anderson’s School of Management.