Los Angeles Area

Our Team

  • Laura Zachar

    Laura Zachar

    Executive Director

    Laura Zachar is the senior executive director for California. Laura has overall responsibility for the operations of Reading Partners Los Angeles as well as the fundraising and community engagement efforts. Prior to joining Reading Partners in 2014, Laura spent over 10 years working to support educational equity for students through various roles, most recently as a consultant for AVID and an executive director for Playworks. Laura holds a degree from Arizona State University and a CFRE (Certified Fundraising Executive) certification, and has raised nearly $20M in her career. A Southern California native and voracious reader herself, Laura is committed to continuing to use education and literacy as a platform to close the opportunity gap for as many students as possible.
  • Chloe Oliveras

    External Relations Director

    Chloe has focused her career on harnessing the community to help ensure all students have the opportunity to be successful in school and beyond. As an AmeriCorps member with City Year Los Angeles, she provided individualized math and English support to students in LAUSD classrooms. She followed her passion for supporting students to Reading Partners where she's increased the volunteer program by 40 percent, established a Tutor Advisory Council, and supported numerous fundraising campaigns and events. She currently oversees fundraising and community engagement efforts for the Greater Los Angeles Area and is always interested in finding ways to collaborate with other organizations or initiatives. To contact: chloe.oliveras@readingpartners.org
  • Jenna Chaffee

    Deputy Program Director

    Jenna grew up in Knoxville, Tennessee, then attended Cornell University where she double majored in psychology and linguistics. There she focused on infant language acquisition research. It wasn't until after college that she discovered her passion for literacy and education while volunteering at an elementary school in her hometown. This passion led her to move across the country and join Reading Partners. She served two years as an AmeriCorps Site Coordinator, opening a new Reading Center at Madison Elementary School before joining the RPLA staff. Now in her 5th year at Reading Partners she is excited to spend more time in all 13 of our Reading Centers across LA as the Deputy Program Director!
  • Mariela Hernandez

    Program Manager

    Mariela is originally from the East Coast. She studied at Florida International University and received her degree in English Education. Upon graduation, she dedicated two years of service with City Year and continued her work there within leadership. She later transitioned to working at YouthBuild Charter School in Philadelphia as an Operations Manager, supporting students in earning their diplomas. She has also worked with Step Up, where she lead staff to empower young girls to be confident and college-ready. Mariela's passion for literacy and national service eventually brought her to Reading Partners. She is excited to work with students to help them gain confidence in themselves and to help close the opportunity gap.
  • Kayla Weems

    Program Manager

    Kayla is a San Diego native and alum of University of California, Berkeley. During her undergraduate years, she developed a passion for education and community service that led her to serve 2 years with Reading Partners as AmeriCorps Site Coordinator after graduation. Before joining the Reading Partners Los Angeles staff, Kayla was the Senior Site Manager and Foster Grandparent Program Project Director at Jumpstart. There she trained and managed older adult volunteers to help low income preschoolers get ready for kindergarten by building foundational language, literacy, and social-emotional skills.
  • Annie Chin

    External Relations Manager

    Annie was born and raised in the Bay Area, where she discovered a love of reading and storytelling at a young age. After receiving her B.A. in Communication Studies at UCLA, Annie chose to apply her passion for literacy to two terms of service with Reading Partners, first serving as a site coordinator at Wilshire Crest Elementary and then as a senior volunteer coordinator for the LA region. As a former member of both the program and community engagement teams, Annie currently applies her varied expertise to her role as Reading Partners Los Angeles’ External Relations Manager. In her spare time, Annie can often be found -- you guessed it -- reading.

AmeriCorps team

Community engagement

Steven Aslin, Senior Volunteer Coordinator

Analisa Cabral, Senior Volunteer Coordinator

Teresa Pangallozzi, Senior Volunteer Coordinator


Russell Chang, Site Coordinator at Wilshire Crest Elementary School

Sara Couch, Senior Site Coordinator at Longfellow Elementary School

Nicole Golden, Regional Site Coordinator

Kimberly Griffith, Senior Site Coordinator at Crescent Heights Boulevard Elementary School

Heather Honig, Site Coordinator at Roosevelt Elementary School

Oona Laurie, Site Coordinator at Shenandoah Street Elementary School

Alex Lee, Site Coordinator at McKinley School

Giselle Miranda, Senior Site Coordinator at Madison Elementary School

Iva Mrkonjic, Site Coordinator at William Green Elementary School

Ellen Mulvihill, Site Coordinator at Carthay Center Elementary School

Beverly Omoregie, Senior Site Coordinator at F. D. R. Elementary School

Melissa Ortiz, Site Coordinator at Washington Elementary School

Azra Rahim, Senior Site Coordinator at Jackson Elementary School

Cecilia Rivas, Senior Site Coordinator at Saturn Street Elementary School

Imelda Rocha, Senior Regional Site Coordinator

Debora Vicente, Senior Site Coordinator at Jefferson Elementary School

Board of directors

Barbara Mitchell, Board Chair, We Stage It Right

Stephanie Bond, Community Member

Sally Harrison, Puma Biotechnology

Steve Fox, Capital Group

Jennifer Allan Goldman, Junior League

Jessica Kaczmarek, James Irvine Foundation

Kelly Hewitt King, California Community Foundation

Pam Kunick-Cohen, Community Member

Michelle Lee, Hahn and Hahn

Jeremy Minter, LA Conservation Corps

Nyanza Shaw, Shaw Esquire

Veronica Truong, Black Equities Group, Ltd.


Thanks to our partners

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