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LENKA BERANOVA

Executive Director - Board

Lenka was raised in former Czechoslovakia, under communist rule and escaped at an early young age with her family, seeking new opportunities.  As an immigrant and a child living under oppression, she understands and has experienced the struggles that many families face living under oppressive governments, difficult life changes and challenges.  After many years of working in a variety of industries with families and kids, her passion for education grew to help create opportunities in education and dreams for all kids. As she would say, "every child deserves a safe place to learn, dream and play."

Lenka has over 20 years of work experience in the business and healthcare industries. She holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania and The Wharton School, as well as a M.A. in Kinesiology from San Jose State University. She has worked as an Analyst and Consultant in Corporate Finance and Litigation Support at The Vanguard Group, Arthur Anderson, Navigant Consulting, and Peterson Consulting. Her business experience consists of preparing complex liability assessments, fact gathering, designing operation and litigation strategies, financial analysis in post-acquisition disputes and SEC investigations for Fortune 500 companies, preparing expert research and litigation reports for claims over $100 million, and analyzing industry trends in banking, pharmaceuticals, communication, insurance and healthcare.

As a former high-level athlete, for the past 20 years she has been dedicated to developing opportunities for children in education and recreation at numerous Philadelphia and Bay-Area schools and institutions. She was the founder/owner of Fitopia Fitness and Wellness, a California-based LLC. Since 2006 she served as the Co-Advisor and Wellness Instructor at Deborah’s Palm, a non-profit dedicated to women’s services. She is an active coach, mentor and volunteer to at-risk-youth programs, such as Big City Mountaineers and many others over her coaching/mentoring years. She is also the founder and board advisor to Za Krajsiu Povasku Bystrica (now: https://www.zrniecka-pre-sny.sk), a non-profit in Slovakia that helps schools to create/sustain underfunded school programs that help provide educational opportunities for children during and after schools.  These school programs unite and engage kids through positive experiences such as Horticulture, Revival of School Settings, Food Drives, Outdoor Planting/Eco-Culture, and Sport Events (Summer Games/Walk/Runs). All in all, connecting kids and communities together, teaching empathy, friendship and sharing responsibilities for safer, supportive sustainable communities. "Together we can make a bigger positive and memorable impact, starting at the grassroots level, by engaging young children in programs that teach them the essential life skills of responsibility and community.

Why do you run and why you love it?

Moving is freeing and it makes me happy.

 

Why education, kids, and sports are essential building blocks for life?

There's no greater way to learn the lessons of life than through education, volunteering and sports.

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NIL DEMIRCUBUK

BOARD OF DIRECTORS | TREASURER and SECRETARY

Nil holds a degree in Industrial Engineering from Bogazici University in Istanbul, Turkey and a PhD in Economics with a focus on International Finance from Clemson University in South Carolina. For the past three years, she has been highly active in the non-profit world, working as an advisor to and volunteer for various women's educational projects and non-profits around San Francisco Area, California. Most recently she has worked with Ashoka Foundation as a member of their Silicon Valley Chapter. In these non-profit organizations her roles included coordinating volunteers, fundraising, and organizing awareness events in girls' education and women's rights. Prior to her entry into the non-profit world, Nil spent nine years as a manager and Director for KMV Corporation, a finance technology company that was acquired by Moody’s in 2002.

Why do you love to walk and move?

I like to walk and dance, usually not at the same time, when I feel happy but I also like to walk and move when I feel sad or frustrated because with each step the world looks brighter.

 

Why education, kids, and sports are essential building blocks for life?

Imagine a world where every kid has access to education, sports, and recreation. It would be a happy place filled with laughter. We would understand how we are all connected. We would know that everyone's actions affects others and the earth. People would work together for a better future. And we may not even have any more reason left to fight with each other.

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JANKA CHLADONOVA

SLOVAKIA ADVISOR

A former professional duathlete with a Masters in Education with a specialization in Physical Education and Humanities. She has worked as a Physical Education Teacher, Coach, and mentor for over 15 years in many disciplines. With both a strong athletic, educational, and business background she is our gateway mentor for both education and sports school programming within Europe and the USA. As a mom, she is a strong role model to her kids and to her family supporting both education and sports for all kid

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LENKA BERANOVA

Executive Director - Board

Lenka was raised in former Czechoslovakia, under communist rule and escaped at an early young age with her family, seeking new opportunities.  As an immigrant and a child living under oppression, she understands and has experienced the struggles that many families face living under oppressive governments, difficult life changes and challenges.  After many years of working in a variety of industries with families and kids, her passion for education grew to help create opportunities in education and dreams for all kids. As she would say, "every child deserves a safe place to learn, dream and play."

Lenka has over 20 years of work experience in the business and healthcare industries. She holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania and The Wharton School, as well as a M.A. in Kinesiology from San Jose State University. She has worked as an Analyst and Consultant in Corporate Finance and Litigation Support at The Vanguard Group, Arthur Anderson, Navigant Consulting, and Peterson Consulting. Her business experience consists of preparing complex liability assessments, fact gathering, designing operation and litigation strategies, financial analysis in post-acquisition disputes and SEC investigations for Fortune 500 companies, preparing expert research and litigation reports for claims over $100 million, and analyzing industry trends in banking, pharmaceuticals, communication, insurance and healthcare.

As a former high-level athlete, for the past 20 years she has been dedicated to developing opportunities for children in education and recreation at numerous Philadelphia and Bay-Area schools and institutions. She was the founder/owner of Fitopia Fitness and Wellness, a California-based LLC. Since 2006 she served as the Co-Advisor and Wellness Instructor at Deborah’s Palm, a non-profit dedicated to women’s services. She is an active coach, mentor and volunteer to at-risk-youth programs, such as Big City Mountaineers and many others over her coaching/mentoring years. She is also the founder and board advisor to Za Krajsiu Povasku Bystrica (now: https://www.zrniecka-pre-sny.sk), a non-profit in Slovakia that helps schools to create/sustain underfunded school programs that help provide educational opportunities for children during and after schools.  These school programs unite and engage kids through positive experiences such as Horticulture, Revival of School Settings, Food Drives, Outdoor Planting/Eco-Culture, and Sport Events (Summer Games/Walk/Runs). All in all, connecting kids and communities together, teaching empathy, friendship and sharing responsibilities for safer, supportive sustainable communities. "Together we can make a bigger positive and memorable impact, starting at the grassroots level, by engaging young children in programs that teach them the essential life skills of responsibility and community.

Why do you run and why you love it?

Moving is freeing and it makes me happy.

 

Why education, kids, and sports are essential building blocks for life?

There's no greater way to learn the lessons of life than through education, volunteering and sports.

IMG_0043.JPG

NIL DEMIRCUBUK

BOARD OF DIRECTORS | TREASURER and SECRETARY

Nil holds a degree in Industrial Engineering from Bogazici University in Istanbul, Turkey and a PhD in Economics with a focus on International Finance from Clemson University in South Carolina. For the past three years, she has been highly active in the non-profit world, working as an advisor to and volunteer for various women's educational projects and non-profits around San Francisco Area, California. Most recently she has worked with Ashoka Foundation as a member of their Silicon Valley Chapter. In these non-profit organizations her roles included coordinating volunteers, fundraising, and organizing awareness events in girls' education and women's rights. Prior to her entry into the non-profit world, Nil spent nine years as a manager and Director for KMV Corporation, a finance technology company that was acquired by Moody’s in 2002.

Why do you love to walk and move?

I like to walk and dance, usually not at the same time, when I feel happy but I also like to walk and move when I feel sad or frustrated because with each step the world looks brighter.

 

Why education, kids, and sports are essential building blocks for life?

Imagine a world where every kid has access to education, sports, and recreation. It would be a happy place filled with laughter. We would understand how we are all connected. We would know that everyone's actions affects others and the earth. People would work together for a better future. And we may not even have any more reason left to fight with each other.

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KATARINA BERANOVA

SLOVAKIA CHAPTER CO-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

A passionate dedicated leader to her communities and to her family. She has served in the teaching industry over 20 years as a TRUE mentor, a leader, and a role model, voted to be the best teacher of the year for many years. Her western influence living in United States has provided her with insight in how to help change her home community in Povazska Bystrica. She is an active member of the City Council in Povazska Bystrica. Believes in educating the public about their rights and responsibilities as citizens of Povazska Bystrica. Strongly dedicated towards reviving and developing recreational activities and programs for children. Her expertize in education and love for children makes her the heart of our organization in Slovakia and Europe.

• Strong family roots in Slovakia, educator/teacher for over 20 years.

• Former member of TJ ZVL Povazska Bystrica, Slovakia

• Masters from FTVS UK Bratislava, physical education and pedagogy

• Taught at SOU Engineering/Technical High School v Povazskej Bystrici

• Co-Founder of “Za Krajsiu Povazsku Bystrica” a Slovakia based non-profit

• City Council Member for Povazska Bystrica

MICHAEL JEFFY

MICHAEL JEFFY

US ADVISOR

Michael Jaffe, M.D. attended UC San Diego School of medicine and completed his residency in Psychiatry at Stanford University. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of California at Berkeley. He has worked in numerous settings, including the Palo Alto VA medical center in it's residential, inpatient, and outpatient settings, with specialized experience with PTSD and Addictions. He is highly engaged and involved with local non-profits. He has lectured at the National Center for PTSD and is on faculty at Stanford University as an Adjunct Clinical Instructor.

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MICHAL CHLADON

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Michal Chladon, has a strong history as a former swimmer, a competitive triathlete for 7+ years, a strong mentor, and a coach to children educational and sport programming in Slovakia and the US. With both a strong background in Business, a Masters in Education and Pedagogy, and his athletic skill set, he is our organization's valuable mentor and insight that will help our organization build and establish effective sustainable programming at schools in Europe. A family man, highly dedicated to athletics, education, and his community, he is our gateway mentor for both the educational and sports programs within the US and in Europe. Speaks German, Slovak, and English.

BRUCE DALLAS

BRUCE DALLAS

US ADVISOR

A partner and member of Davis Polk’s Corporate Department, Mr. Dallas is a founding partner of the Menlo Park office. He advises on corporate finance, derivatives, SEC disclosure and corporate governance. His transactional work includes initial public offerings (with an emphasis on high-technology and bio-technology companies), high-yield, convertible and straight debt offerings and issuer repurchase programs.

Mr. Dallas has been the primary capital markets partner for Comcast, E*TRADE, MASCO, NBCUniversal, Oracle, Roper Industries, SAIC and Texas Instruments. He also regularly represents leading underwriters. Mr. Dallas authored three recent SEC no-action letters, two for Comcast permitting its then 51% subsidiary, NBCUniversal, to be treated as wholly owned for purposes of reduced SEC periodic reporting, one confirming this relief following the acquisition form GE and one for SAIC permitting it to use Rule 14a-16 (Notice and Access) for the pending collapse of its holding company structure.

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KENDRA MAYFIELD

US ADVISOR

Kendra Mayfield has more than 15 years of experience in writing, editing and internal and external communications. She received a B.A. in Communication Studies from UCLA and has written for various print and online publications, including Wired.com, LinkedIn and UCSF Medical Center.  She was a communications specialist for Gap Inc.'s Global Communications and Public Affairs Writing team, she managed various internal and external communications projects, including writing, editing and publishing content for corporate Intranet news portal and internal social media resource to engage 134,000 employees worldwide. She is a former college athlete, she is an avid runner, hiker, skiier and soccer player who is active in local Bay Area sports groups.

 

Why do you love to walk and move?

To stay energized, healthy and active ... and to get outside!

 

Why education, kids and sports are essential building blocks for life? Sports and teamwork teach valuable life lessons in collaboration, problem solving and more.

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SCOTT HENDERSON

US ADVISOR

Scott Henderson holds a BS in Economics from UC Berkeley 94’ and MBA from Santa Clara University 03’. While attending Berkeley, Scott was a member of the NCAA championship water polo team. He followed up his collegiate water polo career as a very successful Masters swimmer and triathlete. Scott worked in the high-tech industry at Cisco Systems in manufacturing engineering before he was received a career ending injury on the job. Scott has made a miraculous recovery from his Traumatic Brain Injury and is now a girls assistant water polo coach on The Big Island, Hawaii, and enjoys raising his 3 children in an active outdoor and aquatic lifestyle. Scott and his wife Jill became active with Swim Across America, a non-profit organization raising money for cancer research and treatment centers across the US, after their 2 year old daughter was successfully treated for a stage 4 metastatic Wilms' (kidney) tumor.

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JILL HENDERSON

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Jill Henderson holds a BS in Exercise Physiology with minors in Nutrition and Psychology 1993. As well as a MS degree in Exercise Physiology from California State Universty, Chico 1998. For the last 14 years she has served the greater Bay Area athletes while working as a massage therapist for Sports Medicine Institute International, a non-profit organization providing low cost therapy service to high level, low income athletes. Prior to this, Jill worked at Stanford University in Behavioral Medicine and Centers for Research in Disease Prevention doing research in childhood obesity and community heath intervention. Jill spent many years volunteering for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Team in Training as a coach and injury prevention coordinator, and currently, she and her husband Scott are involved with Swim Across America, a non-profit organization raising money for cancer research and treatment centers across the US.

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DR. LAWRENCE STEINMAN

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Dr. Steinman is a professor of neurology and neurological sciences, pediatrics, and genetics. He also served as the chair of the Stanford University Interdepartmental Program in Immunology from 2003-2011.

 

Dr. Steinman’s research focuses on what provokes relapses and remissions in multiple sclerosis (MS), the nature of the molecules that serve as a brake on brain inflammation, and the quest for a tolerizing vaccine for autoimmune diseases like type 1 diabetes and neuromyelitis optica. He has developed two antigen specific therapies, using DNA vaccines, for MS and type 1 diabetes. He was senior author on the seminal 1992 Nature article that reported the key role of a particular integrin in brain inflammation. This research led to the development of the drug Tysabri, which is used to treat patients with MS and Crohn’s disease.

 

Dr. Steinman received his BA from Dartmouth College and his MD from Harvard University. He was a post-doctoral fellow in chemical immunology fellow at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. Dr. Steinman returned to Stanford University Hospital as a resident in pediatric and adult neurology and then joined the faculty at Stanford in 1980.

 

Dr. Steinman has received numerous honors and awards, including the John M. Dystel Prize from the American Academy of Neurology and the National MS Society for his research on MS, and the Charcot Prize for Lifetime Achievement in MS research. He has twice been awarded the Senator Jacob Javits Neuroscience Investigator Award by the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke.  Dr. Steinman is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences.

 

Dr. Steinman holds a number of patents in the areas of immunology, and for therapies of Huntington Disease, type 1 diabetes and MS. He cofounded Neurocrine Biosciences, Bayhill Therapeutics now named Tolerion, Nuon Therapeutics, Transparency Life Sciences and Atreca.

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PAVOL DEMACEK

SLOVAKIA ADVISOR

Pavol Demacek is the founder of MEDEKO, a family-based company manufacturing non-ferrous metal alloys, solders, semi-finished products and finished castings in Slovakia. The key to MEDEKO's success is people. Motivated and performing employees are a core element of his thriving company. In 2011MEDEKO ranked third in the top employer chart in the category of small and medium enterprises in the Slovak Republic. Pavol Demacek Ingr. is a strong and dedicated leader to his community and to his employer. He believes in the "right to play" for all kids and the essential need in educating young youth to becoming great leaders within their communities.