WHO WE ARE

AltaSea Leadership

AltaSea Team

Instructor

Frances Arrecis

Director of Advancement

Robin Aube

Director of Advancement Services

Natasha Berendzen

Partner, Brumer Law Group and AltaSea Legal Counsel

Daniel Brumer

Senior Program and Grants Manager (Consultant)

Meredith Brooks

Community Partnerships Manager

Dorothy Valerie Cardenas

BlueSEA Director

Jade Clemons

Senior Manager of Communications

Alex Cornejo

Bookkeeper

Rosa Delgado

Database and Research Manager

Kim Ellis

Instructor

Charlie Flint

Facilities Manager

Walter Flores

Director of Education

Alan Hill

Executive Administrator

Michelle Raymond

Operations Manager

Angie Reed

Custodian

Frankie Velador

Communications and Development Coordinator

Emily Vidovich

Instructor

Frances Arrecis

I studied at Cal Poly Pomona and received a B.S. in Environmental Biology with a focus in biodiversity, conservation, and ecology. I am passionate about our environment and educating our youth to help support it. I worked at my campus’ ethnobotanical garden and rainforest throughout my entire college career where I became familiar with plants native to Southern California. I maintained these plants while educating school groups/visitors on how important these plants contributed to native’s daily life (specifically on Tongva land). I also worked at our vivarium, taking care of reptiles, amphibians, and fish. I currently work for a children’s science museum where I teach science enriched programs in a classroom, workshop, and assembly setting as well as write curriculum. I hope to always educate our youth on how important our ecosystems are and how we can support them.

Director of Advancement

Robin Aube

Robin Aube is the Director of Advancement at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. She grew up in San Pedro and has been a member of the innovative ocean and marine science campus for six years managing Project Blue, AltaSea’s education program, serves as the foundation grant writer and as the Board of Trustees liaison. She is also responsible for planning and implementing special events at AltaSea, such as, the quarterly Open Houses.  Robin has played a key role in the capital campaign and with donor relations. She is a graduate of CSUDH holding a Bachelor of Science degree in Clinical Science with an emphasis in Nuclear Medicine and a Master’s degree in Business Administration.

Director of Advancement Services

Natasha Berendzen

Natasha Berendzen is Director of Advancement Services at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. Prior to joining AltaSea, she was Development Manager at the Ocean Institute in Dana Point, California and Prospect Research Manager at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, playing an integral role in capital campaign efforts. She was also part of a mother-daughter team that created the nonprofit networking groups Women of Washingon, Women of Los Angeles, Women of Orange County and Women of Pasadena.

Natasha received her M.B.A. from California State University, Long Beach and a B.A. with honors in Anthropology from Boston University.

Partner, Brumer Law Group and AltaSea Legal Counsel

Daniel Brumer

Daniel Brumer is a partner at Brumer Law Group where he represents public and private companies, real estate developers, equity investors and lenders in a variety of transactions involving acquisitions and dispositions, leasing, development, joint ventures, land title, and debt and equity financings. He regularly advises clients on local government and public affairs, providing strategic counsel on complex political, regulatory, land use, and other matters involving state and local government in California.

Daniel was previously a senior advisor to Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Krekorian, responsible for all land use and economic development matters, and a planning and land use deputy to former Los Angeles City Councilman Tom LaBonge. He started his legal career as an attorney at O’Melveny & Myers LLP, the oldest law firm in Los Angeles, where he represented public and private companies in mergers, acquisitions, dispositions, financings, and other corporate transactions.

Daniel received his Juris Doctor from Columbia Law School in 2007, where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar and a James Kent Scholar for high academic honors, and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from the University of Maryland in 2002, where he was named to the Distinguished Dean’s List and a member of the University’s Burns Academy of Leadership. He is also a past founding Director and Corporate Secretary of Crown Preparatory Academy, a Los Angeles Unified School District public charter school, and a licensed California real estate broker.

Senior Program and Grants Manager (Consultant)

Meredith Brooks

Meredith Brooks is the Senior Program and Grants Manager (Consultant) at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. She is developing the AltaSea Marine Grants program to expand the portfolio of government grants, with a focus on STEM education, aquaculture and growing the Blue Economy in Los Angeles.

Originally from Rancho Palos Verdes, Meredith now splits her time between the Olympic Peninsula, RPV, and Hawai’i, where she has spent the last decade helping manage one of the USDA Regional Aquaculture Centers. She has fifteen years of management and communication experience in the fields of sustainable aquaculture R&D and conservation, and has authored two K-12 STEM curriculums for Hawai’i schools. Meredith graduated from the University of Southern California with Bachelors Degrees in Political Science and Journalism, and is a member of the Lambda Pi Eta honor society of the National Communication Association.

Community Partnerships Manager

Dorothy Valerie Cardenas

Dorothy Cardenas is the Community Partnerships Manager at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. Prior to joining AltaSea, Dorothy provided crucial administrative support within the film and property management industries. Working in the film industry she coordinated and oversaw budget costs within multiple television series in ABC Studios, CBS Television, NBC Universal, and 20th Century Fox Studios. Dorothy has led the fundraising committees within grassroots community organizations and coordinated logistics for live events. She received her Bachelor’s degree from California State University, Long Beach in English Literature.

BlueSEA Director

Jade Clemons

Jade Clemons is a recovering lawyer and budding economist. She held various legal roles, predominantly in the tech sector, before pursuing a Master of Economics degree to steer her career in the direction of public policy. During these studies, an internship at the United Nations Development Program introduced her to economic development work, which would become her passion.

She comes to AltaSea after serving as the Sr. Program Manager of the Planetary program at the Berggruen Institute, where she promoted equitable and sustainable economic systems with an eye towards human and non-human flourishing. Prior to her time at the Berggruen Institute, she served as the Associate Director of the Center for Regional Economics at the Milken Institute focusing on small business and sustainability initiatives.

A California native, she earned her B.A. in Business Administration from Pepperdine University, her J.D. from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, and her M.A. in Economics from the University of Southern California.

Senior Manager of Communications

Alex Cornejo

Alex Cornejo is the Senior Manager of Communications at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. Prior to joining AltaSea, he was the Director of Communications at Strength Based Community Change (SBCC), a nonprofit in Wilmington where he helped in shaping the brand and identity of the agency. He was also part of the Rotary International of Wilmington where he continued to give back to the community. Equipped with an A.A. in Communications and Media Studies from Long Beach City College, Alex has honed his skills in digital marketing, fundraising, and nonprofit marketing through specialized certificates. Beyond his professional pursuits, his passion for photography, cultivated since high school, has become a powerful tool for capturing and sharing the untold stories of individuals.

Alex believes that everyone has a remarkable narrative waiting to be shared, and he is driven to amplify those voices through the art of film and photography.

Bookkeeper

Rosa Delgado

Rosa Delgado is the Bookkeeper at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. She is a Southern California native and has been working in the Nonprofit sector for over 20 years. During her time at the National Audubon Society, specifically The Audubon Center at Debs Park, her love for nature conservation blossomed. As an administrative assistant, she helped in the day-to-day duties while the nature center was being built, which was to be the first LEED Platinum certified building in the country. Rosa also held the roles of volunteer coordinator and office manager during her time at Audubon.  Most recently, as staff accountant at the Institute for Nonprofit News, she handled the fiscal sponsorship accounting for 20 plus small nonprofit newsrooms.

Database and Research Manager

Kim Ellis

Kim Ellis is the Database and Research Manager at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. With her experience in the non-profit and higher education sectors, she provides valuable research to support fundraising efforts and ensures data integrity within the database. Before joining AltaSea, she worked in development at Cal State LA, the Southern California Institute of Architecture, and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. She holds a master’s degree in Library and Information Science from San Jose State University and a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from the University of California, San Diego.

Instructor

Charlie Flint

Charlie developed a love of the ocean at a young age surfing in South Carolina. Surfing drew him out to California as a teenager where he has lived since. Awestruck by all the innovative things going on at AltaSea, he considers it a privilege to work with everyone here and is happy to be a part of educating the next generation of students to be stewards of the ocean and its precious resources. 

Charlie taught 8th grade science for the first twelve years of his teaching career before moving to the Hawthorne Math and Science Academy to teach physics for fifteen years before retiring. He has also taught chemistry and AP environmental science and is a National Board-certified teacher in physics. He was also selected by the Society for Science to promote research and help students enter science competitions. Charlie has forged partnerships with local industries including SpaceX, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman, Metropolitan Water District and other industries in the area.  

Facilities Manager

Walter Flores

Director of Education

Alan Hill

Alan Hill is the Director of Education at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. He is originally from Wales and has lived in the South Bay for 25 years. He has been an educator for 35 years. After completing B.Ed. degree at University of Wales, he began developing his teaching experience at schools and outdoor centers in the UK. A professional development scholarship took him to Prescott College in Arizona to learn more about experiential education. He moved to the US permanently in 1992 to work for Prescott College. He traveled to Anchorage, Alaska to take an adjunct faculty position at the University of Alaska and within a couple of years had assumed the position of Assistant Coordinator of the Alaska Wilderness Studies program at UAA. While at University of Alaska he completed his M.Ed. specializing in Curriculum Development. In 1997 he moved to Palos Verdes to take the position of Director, Outdoor Education at Chadwick School where he built and developed a robust curriculum for the Outdoor Education Program and assisted in developing the Outdoor Education Program at Chadwick International in Songdo, South Korea.

Executive Administrator

Michelle Raymond

Michelle Raymond is Executive Administrator at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. She has extensive experience developing client research solutions for business planners. Michelle has been a lifelong volunteer starting with Beach Watch protecting the tidepools at Abalone Cove in Palos Verdes. Her nonprofit experience includes being a board member with the Junior League of San Francisco as Vice President and as Community Programs Director. Michelle’s passions include giving the ocean a voice in our sustainable future, sailing, and traveling. She is a graduate of USC holding a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.

Operations Manager

Angie Reed

Angie Reed is the Operations Manager at AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. She is a lifelong San Pedro resident and with that comes a natural connection to the ocean and marine life. Angie raised her college age son in San Pedro with the same deep connection to our coastal waters. She has 20+ years’ experience in the non-profit sector with roles both in finance and operations. She began her finance career in accounts payable and quickly expanded to roles including accounts receivable, grant revenue and staff accounting before moving into operations for organizations with $1 to 9 million budgets.

As Operations Manager, Angie led her organization through two natural disasters and served as project manager for a construction rebuild. She also managed the response to the recent pandemic for her organization, ensuring seamless transition to virtual operations. As well as spearheaded digitization efforts which allowed the organization to not miss a beat in serving their mission. She managed a 45-unit multi-family dwelling in Koreatown that served as transitional housing for the unhoused as well as women and children fleeing human trafficking.

Angie’s heart has remained with the non-profit sector as her main driving force is to be a conduit for good and to be part of the effort to enhance the lives of the communities in which she serves. Her key responsibilities at Alta Sea will allow her to serve that personal mission.

Custodian

Frankie Velador

Frankie, the oldest of four, grew up in Boyle Heights, where his father’s profession as a professional painter instilled in him a love for maintaining cleanliness and order. During his teenage years, Frankie played high school basketball and dedicated six years to Folklorico dancing. 

His first job at UPS eventually led him to a health-conscious company, where he worked in warehousing and customer service. Here, he developed a passion for personal health and fitness, complementing his sociable nature.  

As a supervisor at a janitorial company, Frankie oversaw the cleaning of commercial and residential spaces, including post-construction cleanups. His commitment to cleanliness and his natural transition to supporting AltaSea’s mission led him to pursue a role in maintaining the growing campus.  

Currently residing in San Pedro, Frankie appreciates the peacefulness and proximity to the ocean that the area offers. His dedication to cleanliness, love for the ocean, and commitment to personal growth make him an ideal fit for supporting AltaSea’s mission and its thriving community. 

Communications and Development Coordinator

Emily Vidovich

Emily authors AltaSea’s annual “Here’s the Blue Deal” article series, where she tells the stories of the blue economy and provides educational content about ocean conservation and climate change. She also supports the development team by conducting prospect research, updating databases, curating literature reviews, and writing grant narratives. Prior to joining AltaSea, Emily completed internships at the Natural Resources Defense Council and Heal the Bay, and was an animal care volunteer at the Marine Mammal Care Center. She graduated cum laude from the George Washington University with a degree in art history and a minor in journalism and mass communications. During college, she was an environmental journalism correspondent for Planet Forward and a childcare volunteer for the Homeless Children’s Playtime Project. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Global Environmental Studies at Sophia University in Tokyo, Japan.