2017 Speakers

  • Barbara BoxerSen. Barbara Boxer (Ret.)

    A forceful advocate for families, children, consumers, the environment and her State of California, Barbara Boxer became a United States Senator in January 1993 after 10 years of service in the House of Representatives and six years on the Marin County Board of Supervisors. In January 2017, she stepped down after four terms in the Senate. A national leader on environmental protection, Senator Boxer was the ranking member on the U.S. Senate’s Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW).
    Senator Boxer was also the ranking member of the Senate Select Committee on Ethics. She was a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, where she chaired the first subcommittee ever to focus on global women’s issues.
    Senator Boxer was also a member of the Democratic leadership in the Senate, serving as the Chief Deputy Whip from 2005 – 2016.

    Lynn Daucher Lynn Daucher

    Lynn Daucher began her career in public service after winning election to the school board for the Brea Olinda Unified School District. She served on the school board for 13 years, raising standards and building a new high school through an innovative public-private partnership without taxpayer dollars. In 1994, she was elected to the Brea City Council and served one year as mayor. In 2000, she was elected to represent the 72nd District in the California Assembly. During her six years in the Assembly, she served as the highest-ranking Republican on the budget sub-committee on Education and Finance. In 2007, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed Daucher as director of the California Department of Aging where she served for over three years. Daucher currently serves on the board of directors for the Archstone Foundation and board of SeniorServ.

    Karriann Farrell HindsKarriann Farrell Hinds

    Karriann Farrell Hinds is the director of operations for the National Women’s Political Caucus Los Angeles Westside chapter board of directors. A graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and Loyola Law School, she has dedicated her professional life to serving and advocating for others, first as a volunteer attorney with the Harriett Buhai Center for Family Law, and later as an engaged board member of the ACLU of Southern California. Hinds is an appointee to the California Board of Accountancy and the Los Angeles County Commission for Women. In addition, Hinds serves on the boards of and collaborates with multiple organizations committed to advocating for equal representation of women and people of color in elected and appointed office.

    Jackie A. Filla, PhDJackie A. Filla, PhD

    Jackie A. Filla is an associate professor of political science in the History & Political Science Department at Mount Saint Mary’s University. Her research interests include state and local politics, direct democracy and women’s representation in local government. Filla also spearheads programming for the University’s annual Ready to Run™ nonpartisan campaign training for women. Prior to coming to Mount Saint Mary's, she was an assistant professor and faculty affiliate at the Pennsylvania Center for Women and Politics at Chatham University in Pittsburgh, Penn. She has been awarded grants from the John Randolph and Dora Haynes Foundation and the Women and Girls Foundation and has been published in Urban Affairs Review and State and Local Government Review.

    Sheila James KuehlSheila James Kuehl

    Supervisor Sheila James Kuehl served eight years in the State Senate and six years in the State Assembly, and, in 2008, left the legislature under California's term limits statute. As of 2014, she has represented Los Angeles County’s Third District. She is also Chair of the Board of Commissioners of First Five, LA, and a member of the Boards of Directors of Metro, the Expo Authority, and the LA Local Agency Formation Commission. She is the Founding Director of the Public Policy Institute at Santa Monica College and has served as a Regents' Professor in Public Policy at UCLA. During the 1997-98 legislative session, she was the first woman in California history to be named Speaker pro Tempore of the Assembly. She is also the first openly gay or lesbian person to be elected to the California Legislature.

    Eloise Gómez ReyesEloise Gómez Reyes

    Eloise Gómez Reyes was elected to the California State Assembly in November 2016 to represent California’s 47th Assembly District. Working alongside Legal Aid, she helped provide free legal services and represented the residents of the Inland Empire. She became was the first Latina to open her own law firm in the Inland Empire and co-founded of the Inland Empire Community Health Center. She is also an adjunct professor at Cal Poly Pomona. For her excellence in the community work, she was a recipient of the Wiley Pro Bono Award from the California State Bar (1988–2015), and was recognized as Attorney of the Year from the Inland Empire Latino Lawyers Association. She also serves on the Executive Board for the Children’s Spine Foundation, the Board of Directors for the Inland Empire Latino Lawyers Association, the San Bernardino Valley College Foundation, and the National Orange Show.

    Ana GuerreroAna Guerrero

    Ana Guerrero serves as Mayor Eric Garcetti’s chief of staff and directs all aspects of the Office of the Mayor. In this capacity, she is the primary driver of the mayor’s agenda. Guerrero has worked with Mayor Garcetti since he was first elected to the Los Angeles City Council in 2001. She was appointed as his council office chief of staff in 2008 after serving as his district director and deputy chief of staff. Upon his election as mayor in 2013, Mayor Garcetti appointed Guerrero chief of staff to the mayor’s office. Guerrero came to Los Angeles in 1995 to become the lead organizer of the United Neighborhoods Organization. In this position, Guerrero led a campaign that helped more than 5,000 immigrants become naturalized, politically active citizens. Guerrero is an immigrant from Mexico and is the daughter of farm workers.

    Lindsey HorvathLindsey Horvath

    Mayor Lindsey P. Horvarth was elected to her current term on the West Hollywood City Council in 2015. Prior, she served as a councilmember from 2009 to 2011. She also served as a transportation commissioner from 2011-2015. Mayor Horvath is widely known for her leadership on women’s issues, as a champion of LGTBQ rights, and also serves as a global coordinator for One Billion Rising, a global campaign of the V-Day movement to end violence against women and girls. She is an advocate for A Window Between Worlds, the UN Foundation and CARE. She was first appointed to the West Hollywood Women's Advisory Board in 2007, focusing on issues facing women and families in West Hollywood, and has collaborated with community leaders and organizations in successfully advocating for the full funding of the backlog of untested rape kit evidence in the city and county of Los Angeles.

    Connie LeyvaConnie Leyva

    Connie Leyva was elected to the 20th State Senate District in 2014. Prior, Senator Leyva was elected as the first woman to be president of the California State Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, representing more than 2.1 million workers throughout the state. She is committed to get California working again, with schools, jobs and opportunities that provide every family and community with the chance to prosper. She runs a fundraising drive coordinated with local Stater Bros stores that have helped raise more than $1.2 million for leukemia research. She partnered with the United Way to open a food pantry that has been a helping hand to nearly 4,000 people during the economic downturn. For more than 15 years she has helped thousands of needy children through the Shoes That Fit program and Kingsley Elementary.

    Nury MartinezNury Martinez

    Councilwoman Nury Martinez is Los Angeles' first Latina elected to the Los Angeles City Council in 25 years. In 2009, she was elected to the LAUSD Board of Education and from 2003 until 2009 she served the city of San Fernando as mayor and as a city councilwoman. Today, she is the only woman on the L.A. City Council, where she represents District 6. Martinez has dedicated her life to the San Fernando Valley, where she was born and raised. Martinez relies on her experience in community organizing and her family history to inspire her community revitalization goals on the L.A. City Council. In her unique role as the sole elected female member of the Council, Martinez is committed to encouraging and supporting girls and women to take leadership roles and be part of government.

    Elizabeth MatthewsElizabeth Matthews

    Elizabeth Matthews is a veteran PR executive running her own LA-based public relations and brand strategy firm. She has executed public affairs campaigns on Capitol Hill and developed innovative brands for Fortune 500 companies. She’s been deeply involved in public service since receiving her Political Science degree at the University of Southern California (USC) – including campaigns for Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Eric Garcetti. Elizabeth has served on the Mayor’s Arts Advisory Board and as an Economic Development consultant; and four years as Chair of PR on the Board of Directors of the LA County Museum of Art’s (LACMA) largest art council. She is Director of PR on the Executive Board of political action group, Together We Will, LA. Elizabeth recently co-founded Female Forward which, in partnership with the City of LA and the Mayor’s office, empowers citizens to champion women’s issues.

    Rebecca NinburgRebecca Ninburg

    Rebecca Ninburg currently sits on the City of Los Angeles’ Board of Fire Commissioners. Prior to her appointment, she served for two years as vice president and then president of the City of Los Angeles’ Commission on the Status of Women. While on the CSW she worked closely with the LAFD to help strategize the recruitment of women in the fire service, which has resulted in the doubling of female applicants to the LAFD. In 2014, she was named one of the top 10 most influential women in Los Angeles by Los Angeles Magazine. Ninburg has devoted herself recently to public service but is best known for her work as the co-founder and CEO of the Los Angeles Derby Dolls, an all-female roller derby league committed to elevating women, young girls and the community through sport.

    Celestine W. PalmerCelestine W. Palmer

    Celestine Palmer is president emeritus and founder of the Los Angeles African American Women’s political action committee (LAAAWPAC); founder of Los Angeles African American Women’s Public Policy Institute (LAAAWPPI); and co-founder of Women Building for the Future political action committee. LAAAWPAC is committed to promoting candidates to public office and supporting issues that address the concerns of the African-American community by contributing financial resources and using collective voices for political impact. The LAAAWPPI is a 10-week intensive training program for African-American women, and was created as a separate nonpartisan and nonprofit foundation. Palmer became actively involved in the political process as a member of her Los Angeles Teacher’s Union when elected to the House of Representatives and delegate to conventions. In the California State Democratic Party, she served as vice chair and chairperson of the California Democratic Party’s Women’s Caucus.

    Mona PasquilMona Pasquil

    Mona Pasquil serves as appointments secretary in the Office of Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. and is responsible for helping the governor build his administration by recruiting top candidates to serve the state. She previously served as chief of staff to California Lt. Gov. John Garamendi and as acting lieutenant governor, after Garamendi was elected to Congress. This marked the first time a woman, an Asian Pacific Islander and a Filipino American served in this role. Pasquil is a veteran political advisor and strategist, and president of Pasquil Associates & Strategic Communications. She has directed presidential, gubernatorial and local campaigns across the nation. She’s most proud of her work mentoring California's youth to become more active in their communities. This includes founding the Asian Pacific Youth Leadership Project of California, dedicated to boosting Asian and Pacific Islander youth involvement in state policy.