Ryan Atlas

Board Chair

Managing Director, Vista Equity Partners

Ryan Atlas

Board Chair

Managing Director, Vista Equity Partners

Ryan Atlas joined Vista Equity Partners in 2012 and sits on the Vista Foundation Funds’ Investment Committee. Mr. Atlas currently sits on the boards of AlertMedia, Critical Start, ESO Solutions, Granicus, LogicMonitor, Menlo Security, Tigerconnect, and Tribute Technology. He was formerly on the boards of Allocate, Return Path and Wrike and was also actively involved in the firm’s investments in Autotask, Bullhorn, Main Street Hub, and Relias Learning.

Prior to joining Vista, Mr. Atlas worked at JMI Equity, a growth equity firm with over $6 billion under management. While at JMI, Mr. Atlas focused on growth and buyout investments of software and technology-enabled businesses. Before his time with JMI, Mr. Atlas worked at McKinsey & Company, where he advised clients on both strategy and operations in a variety of industries including private equity, technology, and energy. In addition to his work at Vista, he also serves as Board Chair at Friends of the Children Austin, having previously served as Vice Board Chair and Treasurer, and a board member of Austin PBS-KLRU.

Jessica Leggett

Board Vice Chair

Principal, MSD Partners, L.P.

Jessica Leggett

Board Vice Chair

Principal, MSD Partners, L.P.

Jessica Leggett has over 20 years of experience in private equity and venture investing, managing institutional capital, and scaling organizations. At MSD, Jessica is a Principal on the Real Estate team and is responsible for investment strategy and capital deployment on behalf of the Dell family and other like-minded investors. Before joining MSD, Jessica was both Founder and CEO of Seven + Gold, a mission-driven investment platform focused on seed-stage investing across industries.

Earlier in her career, she was a founding partner and the CFO of Vantage Properties, LLC, a New York City based real estate private equity firm with over $2 billion of assets under management. Prior to Vantage, Jessica worked in similar capacities with The Olnick Organization and with Lehman Brothers.

Jessica is a graduate of the Business Honors Program at The University of Texas at Austin with a B.B.A. in Finance. A proud Texan, she relocated to Austin with her husband and two children after living in New York City and San Francisco. She is currently serving on the Board of Directors for Mission Asset Fund and is involved with several non-profit organizations. She previously served as the Treasurer for the Board of Trustees for Democracy Prep Charter School, located in Harlem, New York for 7 years.

Brian Loring

Board Treasurer

Senior Vice President, Vista Equity Partners

Brian Loring

Board Treasurer

Senior Vice President, Vista Equity Partners

Brian Loring is a Senior Vice President at Vista Equity Partners, a private equity firm focused on investing in software, data, and technology companies. Before joining Vista in 2011, Brian worked at Riverside Resources, an Austin-based commercial real estate investment and development firm. Brian received his B.A. and J.D. from Emory University and his M.B.A. from The University of Texas – McCombs School of Business. In addition to Friends of the Children, Brian and his wife Maile are actively involved in other philanthropic organizations, including Hill Country Conservancy, Waller Creek Conservancy, and the ALS Association.

Khalida Ali

Board Secretary

Director, Diversity and Inclusion, Vista Equity Partners

Khalida Ali

Board Secretary

Director, Diversity and Inclusion, Vista Equity Partners

Prior to joining Vista, Ms. Ali worked at Zendesk as Head of Diversity and Inclusion, where she was responsible for building inclusive and equitable business practices across 15 international offices. Before her time with Zendesk, Ms. Ali was Vice President and Chief of Staff for Bank of America’s Global Head of Campus Recruiting and Junior Talent Management, where she established operational, business management and budgetary procedures for a global team. Prior to Bank of America, Ms. Ali was a Manager of Diversity Analytics at NBCUniversal, where she focused on developing company-wide and business unit specific diversity and inclusion strategies by leveraging workforce analytics and industry trends. Ms. Ali began her career at Morgan Stanley and is a graduate of Spelman College.

Rachel Arnold

Co-Founder

Senior Managing Director, Vista Equity Partners

Rachel Arnold

Co-Founder

Senior Managing Director, Vista Equity Partners

Rachel Arnold has over two decades of experience investing in and scaling growth at market leading software companies. Ms. Arnold is Co-Head of the Vista Endeavor Funds and serves as a member of Vista’s Executive Committee, the firm’s governing and decision-making body for matters affecting its overall management and strategic direction, and Vista’s Private Equity Management Committee, the firm’s decision-making body for matters affecting Vista’s overall private equity platform. She currently sits on the boards of BigTime, BlueConic, Jebbit, RadarFirst, Tripleseat, and Zapproved, and is involved in the firm’s investments in ComplySci, Dispatch, Kazoo, and Mabl. She was actively involved in the firm’s investments in AGDATA, Autotask, BigMachines, Bonterra, Bullhorn, Kibo, Lanyon, Lone Wolf, Naviga, PeopleAdmin, Relias Learning, and SecureLink.

Prior to joining Vista Equity Partners in 2012, Ms. Arnold held executive positions at four Vista companies. Her roles have included interim CEO at Bonterra (formerly Social Solutions), Senior Vice President of Engineering, Product Management and Marketing at Mitratech, Vice President of Product Management and Strategy at MicroEdge, and running Business Development and Channel Programs at SRC Software. Outside of her Vista tenure, Ms. Arnold served as Strategy Director at Interbrand and as an Equity Research Associate covering enterprise software at Pacific Crest.

Ms. Arnold is passionate about giving back to her community. In 2017, she co-founded the Austin chapter of Friends of the Children, a nonprofit organization focused on breaking the cycle of generational poverty through transformative work with high-risk youth. Ms. Arnold is the Past Chair and current board member for the Friends of the Children Austin chapter and also serves as Treasurer and Trustee for The Contemporary Austin. She previously served on the National Board for Friends of the Children.

Amy Baer

Director of the Baer Family Foundation

Amy Baer

Director of the Baer Family Foundation

Amy Baer is Director of the Baer Family Foundation, which she founded with her husband Joshua Baer to support the Austin community with a focus on disadvantaged children and inclusive entrepreneurship. She retired from Dell in 2007 where she served in a variety of roles including Manager of Enterprise Strategy and Communications for Asia-Pacific/Japan located in Singapore, and as an advocate for the expansive partnership between Dell and Microsoft.

Amy resides in Austin, Texas, with her husband Joshua and their three children. You can reach her on Twitter @AmyBaer.

Bettina Barrow

Independent Film Producer

Bettina Barrow

Independent Film Producer

Bettina Barrow is an independent film and television producer based in Austin, Texas. Her short film “Maude” premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, sold to multiple distributors shortly thereafter, and won a large cash prize from Amazon for its popularity on the platform. Bettina produced the feature film, "Sister Aimee", directed by Samantha Buck and Marie Schlingmann, which premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, screened at the 2019 SXSW Film Festival, and sold to 1091 Media. She has multiple projects in development with Buck and Schlingmann, including a television series that was developed for HBO and a feature thriller called “Seamonster”. Currently, Bettina is in post-production on “Downtown Owl”, a feature film based on the novel by Chuck Klosterman. Sony Worldwide Acquisitions in distributing the film. “Downtown Owl” stars Ed Harris, Henry Golding, Vanessa Hudgens, and Lily Rabe. Bettina is also a Sundance, Film Independent, Rotterdam, Cannes, and TIFF Fellow.

Before becoming an independent producer, Bettina was a lawyer at an international law firm in Los Angeles, specializing in employment and entertainment law. Her background in the creative arts, namely her experience as a professional actress, inspired her to exit the legal world and pursue film production. Bettina is a graduate of Princeton University and the UCLA School of Law.

Jade DeKinder

Associate Dean of Master of Science Programs, McCombs School of Business, The University of Texas at Austin

Jade DeKinder

Associate Dean of Master of Science Programs, McCombs School of Business, The University of Texas at Austin

Jade S. DeKinder is the Associate Dean for the MS Programs and a Clinical Assistant Professor of Marketing at The University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business. Dr. DeKinder received her Bachelor’s degree in Economics with highest honors from Emory University and her PhD in Marketing from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School. Her research interests include market signaling, information asymmetry and uncertainty in buyer-seller relationships, sales force compensation, and econometric modeling. Her research has appeared in the Journal of Marketing and the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science.


Libby Doggett

Strategic Change Leader, Early Learning

Libby Doggett

Strategic Change Leader, Early Learning

Libby Doggett is leveraging 40+ years of leadership and management skills honed through work in schools, Head Start, and childcare to improve the well-being of children in Texas. She serves on numerous national, state, and local boards that impact the quality of life of our nation's youngest children. While working in Washington DC, Doggett served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Early Learning at the US Department of Education. In that role Doggett provided early childhood expertise and policy guidance to the Secretary and served as the early learning liaison to the White House, the Department of Health and Human Services, and other federal and state agencies. Prior to that, Doggett served as Executive Director of the Federal Interagency Coordinating Council for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers with disabilities and their families and then worked at the National Head Start Association, directing a program to improve literacy in early learning classrooms across the country. Later Doggett led two national campaigns for the Pew Charitable Trusts: one to provide support to advocates in targeted states to build home visiting and parent support programs, and another to advance high-quality, voluntary pre-kindergarten for all three-and four-year old’s in states across the country. Through its successes, Pre-K Now significantly increased the investments and number of children attending state supported pre-k. Doggett has three degrees from the University of Texas and lives in Austin with her husband Lloyd Doggett, and near their two daughters and four grandchildren.

Shannon Ghangurde

Texas Budget & Legislative Consultant

Shannon Ghangurde

Texas Budget & Legislative Consultant

Shannon Ghangurde has nearly two decades of legislative and state budget experience working in the Texas Legislature. Prior to starting her own consulting practice, Shannon served as the Committee Director for the Senate Finance Committee where she oversaw the budget writing process for all areas of state government, including health care, education, transportation, natural resources and general government services. During her time at the Capitol, she also served as the Committee Director for the Senate Health and Human Services Committee and General Counsel to Texas Senator Jane Nelson, where she helped lead negotiations on marquee initiatives including the health care portion of the state budget, Medicaid reform, historic advances for mental health, and the creation of the nation’s largest cancer research institute, CPRIT.

Today, Shannon provides expert legislative consulting, advocacy, analysis and grassroots coordination for a wide range of both corporate and non-profit clients in sectors such as health care, energy, crime victims, mental health and substance abuse prevention, and the arts.

Shannon holds a B.A. degree in government from the University of Texas at Austin and a law degree from the Washington College of Law at American University. A native Texan, Shannon resides in Austin with her husband and two children, who enjoy traveling and the outdoors.

Dr. Manny Gonzalez

Regional Director, South at Western Governors University

Dr. Manny Gonzalez

Regional Director, South at Western Governors University

Dr. Manny Gonzalez serves as Director of South Regional Operations for Western Governors University, a non-profit, accredited, online university established in 1997 by 19 U.S. governors to expand access to higher education across the nation. As Regional Director, Dr. Gonzalez leads strategic initiatives and education partnership efforts in the South Region which includes Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico. Through this work, Dr. Gonzalez expands access to higher education and builds pathways to careers in the high-demand, high-need workforce fields of education, nursing/healthcare, IT, and business.

Prior to joining WGU, Dr. Gonzalez served as Executive Director for the Community College Association of Texas Trustees, a membership organization representing more than 400 elected trustees and regents across the state’s 50 public community college districts. Dr. Gonzalez’s career also includes work for the University of Texas at Austin, the Texas House of Representatives, and the White House Domestic Policy Council.

Dr. Gonzalez holds a baccalaureate degree in Management from Trinity University, an M.Ed. in College & University Personnel Administration and Ph.D. in Education Leadership & Policy, both from the University of Texas at Austin. During his higher education academic career, Dr. Gonzalez focused his research efforts understanding and addressing issues related to college access, student success, adult learners, and college affordability.

Dr. Gonzalez currently serves on the Austin Community College District Board of Trustees (Place 5), Leadership Austin Board of Directors, the Trinity University National Alumni Association Board, and the Austin Community Foundation Somos Austin Steering Committee. In his free time, Dr. Gonzalez enjoys spending time with his wife Andrea and their three young children, coaching/watching their respective games at Town & Country Sports, serving as Pond Springs Elementary PTA Vice President, and searching for the best hole in the wall coffee & taco spots across town.

Lisa Graham

Partner & CEO, Notley

Lisa Graham

Partner & CEO, Notley

Lisa Graham co-founded Notley in 2015. Notley is on a mission to unleash relentless changemakers. Headquartered in Austin, Notley teams up with a diverse range of passionate people and partners to combat issues across multiple cause areas. Notley has an exciting for-profit/nonprofit approach, and they envision a world in which the integration and collaboration of purpose and profit brings about lasting systemic change.

Her previous experience ranges from working political campaigns to consulting school districts on public school finance. Lisa actively gives back to the Austin community and is on the Board of Directors of Philanthropitch, Beam, and Friends of the Children. She is a member of Entrepreneurs Organization (EO) and holds degrees in Communication Studies and History from The University of Texas at Austin. As a 2009 graduate of the LBJ School of Public Affairs, Lisa completed a specialization portfolio in nonprofit studies through the RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service. She is a 2018 graduate of the Leadership Austin Essentials.

Caroline Haley

Manager, 4HC Energy

Caroline Haley

Manager, 4HC Energy

Caroline Haley moved to Austin to attend graduate school at University of Texas, and stayed. She is married to Brian, and they have a daughter Jane and son Speller. Caroline also serves on the board of Waterloo Greenway Conservancy and Blanton Museum of Art. The Haleys attend All Saints Presbyterian Church.

Anne Jacob

Director, Jacob Family Holdings, LLC

Anne Jacob

Director, Jacob Family Holdings, LLC

Anne E. Jacob is a mother, teacher, volunteer and advocate for children in disadvantaged environments. Anne serves as a Director, on the Board of Directors, of the Jacob Family Holdings, LLC (JFH). JFH, directly and through its subsidiaries, provides financial planning, accounting, and investment management services to the Jacob Family, and is a controlling investor in a number of private companies. Additionally, Anne serves as a Board Observer, to the Board of Directors, of the Arc of the Capital Area, an Austin-based non-profit that focuses on adults with developmental disabilities. Anne was previously a first grade teacher at Downer Elementary School, in Richmond, California. Prior to Downer, Anne received a MS in Education from Mills College, and a BA from Santa Clara University.

Anne lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband and three children. Anne’s middle child, Grayson Jacob, was diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome, a rare genetic disease. Anne is an avid skier and gardener and enjoys all things outdoors.

Judge Aurora Martinez Jones

Judge, 126th State District Court, Travis County

Judge Aurora Martinez Jones

Judge, 126th State District Court, Travis County

Aurora Martinez Jones has served as the presiding judge of the 126th District Court since January 01, 2021 where she is responsible for the administration and oversight of all Travis County CPS cases. Prior to that, in 2015, she was appointed as Associate Judge in Travis County where her bench was dedicated to the CPS dockets. She is from La Porte, Texas, a suburb of Houston, and attended college at The University of Texas at Austin where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Government and a minor in Spanish. She then attended law school at The University of Texas School of Law and upon receiving her law license; she started her own law firm, The Martinez Jones Law Firm, PLLC. As an attorney, Aurora Martinez Jones practiced primarily in child welfare law, juvenile justice, personal injury, probate, real estate, family law, and civil litigation.

Judge Martinez Jones is Board Certified in Child Welfare Law and is a Child Welfare Law Specialist, Certified by the National Association of Counsel for Children. She is also the presiding District Judge for the Family Drug Treatment Court and the Crossover Program for Dual Status Youth.

She is the past Chair for the Texas Children’s Justice Act Task Force, is the past President of the Austin Black Lawyers Association, is currently on the Board for the Child Protection Law Section of the State Bar of Texas and is on the Board for the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ), among other leadership positions she holds in the community. Judge Martinez Jones is also active in both the local Austin Bar Association and Texas State Bar through her service on various committees. She is a Texas Bar Foundation Fellow and a member of the Robert W. Calvert American Inn of Court.

Judge Martinez Jones and her husband, Mitchell Jones, are the proud parents of two precious little girls.

Karen M. Kennard

Co-Managing Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig

Karen M. Kennard

Co-Managing Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig

Karen M. Kennard is the Co-Managing Shareholder of the Greenberg Traurig Austin, Texas office. Karen focuses her practice on government law, policy, and regulatory matters with an emphasis on municipal local government issues. Her legal experience spans more than two decades and includes positions as City Attorney for the City of Austin, Texas and General Counsel for the Texas Municipal League (TML)

Karen represents clients on a broad range of legal issues including procurement/government contracts, economic development and tax incentives, transportation, public infrastructure, land use, land development, and legislative advocacy. Karen’s local government practice is national in scope and includes the representation of large publicly traded corporations, private companies, individuals, and governmental entities and special districts.

Karen serves on several Austin community boards and spends her free time traveling, hiking, and reading books.

Dr. Samantha Miller

Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School

Dr. Samantha Miller

Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School

Dr. Miller has been awarded ABPP specialty board certification in clinical child and adolescent psychology. This board certification attests to excellence in meeting the advanced education, training and professional standing established by the specialty, as well as examination by peers attesting to expertise in the specialty. Miller has expertise in comprehensive diagnostic evaluations and delivering empirically supported treatments. Dr. Miller is the owner of a conciergerie model private mental health practice and is a courtesy affiliate faculty in the Department of Psychiatry. She provides clinical instruction and supervision to doctoral candidates, fellows and medical residents.

Lauren Moorman

TOPO Development

Lauren Moorman

TOPO Development

Lauren and her husband, Tom, have lived in Austin since 2004, and she works in commercial real estate development. As parents of a 7-year-old, Lauren and Tom are thrilled to support Friends Austin - and recognize the value of time, attention and mentorship and the impact they have on our children and community.

Milam Newby

Past Board Chair

Managing Partner, Austin, Vinson & Elkins LLP

Milam Newby

Past Board Chair

Managing Partner, Austin, Vinson & Elkins LLP

Milam Newby is the Managing Partner of the Austin office of Vinson & Elkins, where he advises on and leads transactions in an array of industries, including technology, financial services, manufacturing, life sciences, chemicals, transportation, and energy. Milam is also Head of the firm’s Technology practice.

Johanna Peyton

Community Philanthropist

Johanna Peyton

Community Philanthropist

Johanna Peyton is a mother of three, an active philanthropist, and a children's book writer. She received a MPH from the University of Texas School of Public Health and a BBA in Marketing and Entrepreneurial Management from Texas Christian University. Austin has been her home since 2009 and she is grateful for opportunities to help support her community. Johanna and her family are members of All Saints Presbyterian Church.

David Sooch

Senior Director of Finance, Graza

David Sooch

Senior Director of Finance, Graza

David is a native Austinite and is passionate about giving back to the community to help break the cycle of poverty through education. His involvement in philanthropy began at an early age, serving as a junior board member on the KDK Harman Foundation. David currently serves on the Sooch Foundation board, which seeks to make a positive and permanent change in the lives of economically disadvantaged people in Austin through increased educational opportunities. In his professional career, David has held various roles in Finance and Operations in the consumer packaged goods industry and currently works at Graza. David holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from the University of Michigan and an MBA from the University of Texas. David is an avid golfer and loves getting out to the course as often as possible in his free time.

Colleen Trabold

Real Estate Partner, Terrace Mountain Investors

Colleen Trabold

Real Estate Partner, Terrace Mountain Investors

Colleen has worked in a commercial real estate family business for over 30 years. She is married to Frank, and she has 3 adult children. Colleen has served on several boards including Episcopal School of Dallas and as the President of The Elisa Project board. Colleen has always had a passion for literacy and is currently working with children that have been diagnosed with dyslexia. Colleen is in her second year of her certification process to become a Certified Academic Language Therapist (CALT).

Javier Valdez

Executive Director, HealthStart Foundation

Javier Valdez

Executive Director, HealthStart Foundation

With a proven track record in nonprofits, education, technology, and startups, Javier has skills and experience that converge in his role as Executive Director of HealthStart Foundation. Once a corporate executive, he now works to scale HealthStart’s growth thoughtfully and inclusively. In this role, his strengths range broadly from connecting with people to discovering insights in data.

Authentic and approachable, Javier focuses on developing a collaborative, team-centered culture where everyone has input and has a sense of ownership and pride in the output. Javier builds strong relationships among stakeholders, including C-suite executives, community leaders, donors, and volunteers.

Javier also enjoys mentoring the people on his team and helping them reach the next level professionally. He fosters open communication as he helps his mentees pioneer their futures. This style aligns beautifully with HealthStart’s programs, which nurture children’s education and curiosity so that they are equipped to build lifelong healthy habits.

With an engineering and science educational background, Javier gets excited about HealthStart’s science-based approach to healthy eating habits. With an active lifestyle, he realizes the importance of taking care of his body!

Drawing from his background in technology and operations, Javier also brings in tech that helps HealthStart function productively, blending entrepreneurial efficiency with nonprofit nuance and a heartfelt mission.

Javier enjoys fitness when he’s not working, especially cycling and Pilates. He loves eating healthy foods and trying new restaurants. He also enjoys live music at all the cool local venues.