A 30-year resident of Los Angeles, Jeremy Bernard served as White House Social Secretary and Special Assistant to President Barack Obama from 2011 until 2015. Previously, he was Senior Advisor to the United States Ambassador in France and the White House Liaison to the National Endowment for the Humanities. In early 2018, he published with co-author Lea Berman, Social Secretary for the George W. Bush administration, the book Treating People Well: The Extraordinary Power of Civility at Work and in Life. Jeremy is also a member of the board of the Rescue + Freedom Project, an animal welfare organization.
Jeremy fiercely believes that everyone in Los Angeles deserves the opportunity to achieve their dreams and that driving meaningful change will mean addressing the multifaceted challenges facing our city with innovative, multi-sectoral collaborations. Jeremy is thrilled to lead the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles into its next chapter of creating exciting, effective civic partnerships.
Ilir Lita brings two decades of experience across public, private, and philanthropic sectors to his role as the Director of Programs at the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles where he partners with civic leaders to address the city’s most pressing challenges. Prior to the Mayor’s Fund, he was the Director of Research, Operations, and Impact for The Artemis Agency, a philanthropic advisory firm. At The Artemis Agency, he worked with individual, corporate, and non-profit clients to create long-term, comprehensive strategies for charitable giving. Ilir’s prior experience includes creative development at DreamWorks Pictures and Warner Bros. Entertainment, and product development at Google. He currently serves on the Steering Committee for the L.A. chapter of Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy and Co-Chair of its Giving Circle and has served on the Board of Governors for the University of Southern California and as Co-Chair of Avant-Garde at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. A first-generation college student, Ilir earned a Bachelor’s in Communication and Media Studies and a Master’s in Professional Writing from the University of Southern California.
Marie’s expertise lies at the intersection of data and social good. In her previous roles at Foundation Center she worked in a data management capacity with public charities data and international philanthropies data. For the city government of her hometown of Lexington, Kentucky, she oversaw the adoption of a new database for environmental inspection reporting with the Division of Water Quality. As an avowed generalist, Marie enjoys working with organizations that serve a variety of issues areas in order to create change that is intersectional and multi-faceted and seeks to build capacities and partnerships across sectors. Marie frequently finds herself brimming with ideas and derives joy from improving workflow efficiencies, optimizing data management and analysis, and exploring new possibilities for innovation, design, and collaboration. She currently volunteers as a teen mentor with a local nonprofit, WriteGirl, and is a member of the Southern California Chapter of PEAK Grantmaking. Marie holds a Master’s of Public and International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh and a Bachelor’s degree (Summa cum Laude) in Philosophy and Political Science from the University of Kentucky.
Julie, a life-long Angeleno, is proud to be serving as the Mayor’s Fund Coordinator. Previously, Julie served as the Executive Director of Marketing for the UCLA student-run non-profit, the Pediatric AIDS Coalition. In this role she coordinated social media strategies, oversaw design alterations, and collaborated on media coverage regarding the cause-related work of the organization. Her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies combined with her specialization in Gender Studies from UCLA enables Julie to utilize an intersectional approach to build strong relationships within the philanthropic sector. With special interests in equity, health and sustainability, Julie is excited to work alongside a team that has a hand in impacting all kinds of positive change around Los Angeles.
Natalie is a Program Manager at the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles. Previously, Natalie worked with the Government Alliance on Race and Equity to assess the impact of their racial equity training program for local governments in California. During the Obama Administration, Natalie worked at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development through an intergovernmental partnership with PolicyLink, where she created a guide to effective government-philanthropic collaboration and contributed to the rollout of landmark federal fair housing regulations. She also brings experience in international development through consultancies with the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) and the World Bank. Natalie holds a Master’s in City Planning from the University of Pennsylvania, where she specialized in Community and Economic Development, and she earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Geography from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. As a transplant to Los Angeles from Washington, D.C., she is excited to have this opportunity to support her new hometown through impactful projects and innovative partnerships.