(805) 746-7365 info@venturafiresafe.org

Staff

Elaine Himelfarb

 

Executive Director

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Elaine has held leadership positions in both the philanthropic and nonprofit sectors. As the Senior Program Officer for MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, Elaine and her team created the strategic vision for the Grants Department and awarded over $5 million in grant funding. Prior to that, Elaine was hired as the Executive Director of Project Concern in Romania where she helped put the Project and Romania on solid financial footing and opened three branch offices.

Elaine is currently on faculty with the Ventura County Center for Nonprofit Leadership and with Conejo Valley Adult School, and serves on the Board of The Greater Contribution, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of women through micro-loans in East Africa. Through these leadership positions, Elaine developed a deep understanding of the need for local community solutions as well as policy advances to address some of the most challenging issues of our time.

Elaine holds a Masters in Public Health from Tulane University.

Kate Furlong

 

Programs Manager

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After working for over a decade in the non-profit sector, Kate found her way to the Ventura Regional County Fire Safe Council in March 2021. Born, raised, and educated in Ventura County and has a passion for nature, fundraising, and community.

She has a love for education and empowering individuals through volunteer efforts and aspires to increase equity and equality throughout the county, especially when it comes to hazard prevention. With a background in invasive species management, open space conservation, watershed sciences, and fire and restoration ecology, Kate is excited to utilize her skills and connections to help make Ventura County a safer, more connected, place live.

Kate graduated with honors from the California State University, Channel Islands with a Bachelor’s of Science in Environmental Science and Resource Management with a minor in Biology and is also a Co-Vice President of the Board of Directors for Runners for Public Lands, a non-profit focused on connecting runners to land conservation and stewardship.

Stephen Watson

Administration Manager

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We are so excited to introduce our new Administration Manager; Stephen Watson! Stephen joined our team in July 2021, and he has already made such an impact getting our organization into shape. He’s very eager to restructure and reorganize the grant management, financial, and administrative aspects of the fire safe council.

Although Stephen is new to our organization, he is no stranger to nonprofit work. He worked as a Marriage and Family Therapist Trainee at a nonprofit in Van Nuys for over 3 years while getting his masters in Psychology and Counseling. After working as a therapist for many years, Stephen then went on to being an office manager at a therapy center for troubled teens. He even aided in the creation of a new nonprofit community mental health center that provided low cost therapy for teens and families who couldn’t otherwise afford it. In addition, he served as the Secretary and Treasurer at this nonprofit for over 2 years. It was during this time that he realized he had a passion for working behind-the-scenes in the more administrative roles.

Although you may not see him as much out and about in the community, he is a vital part in our organization. We feel so fortunate to have him on our team, and we are confident that he will help us immensely in making our workflow processes more efficient so we can continue to serve and expand the amount of people we can reach through our programming.