The Education Foundation of Anaheim Hills (EFAH) was founded in February 2016 with a straightforward mission. We exist to invest directly in the education of students at Running Springs Elementary School, and empower teachers and administrators to be innovators in learning.
This includes investment in classroom technology and supporting new STEM programs that augment the existing curriculum, with the goal of helping our children to become 21st century leaders.
The EFAH Board of Directors is comprised of parents and community members from the Anaheim Hills area that volunteer their time, talents and expertise to carry out the EFAH mission.
Meet the current Board of Directors
Sandeep Baweja, President
About Sandeep: It’s all about the kids. For me, it’s that simple. My wife Shruti and I have three children at Running Springs Elementary. So investing in our children is our top priority, which motivates my involvement with our community’s Education Foundation. I graduated from UC Santa Barbara with degrees in philosophy and history. I then obtained my law degree from Syracuse University.
After initially practicing law, I became Vice President Al Gore’s Political Director for Washington State, where I ran his 2000 presidential campaign. This was the most challenging, frustrating, exhausting, fun, exciting, amazing experience of my life. It was also the most illuminating as well. I worked with numerous organizations on varied causes, including educators and teachers unions. As a result, I gained a true appreciation for the vital role of grassroots community activism. I now serve as President of Intellex Strategic Consulting, a business consulting firm based in Anaheim, which works with small companies on growth strategy, business development, and risk management.
In my spare time, I coach competitive youth soccer with the Chelsea Soccer Club and remain active with charitable causes benefiting children, such as the Orangewood Children’s Home. The Foundation is dedicated to preparing our kids for the 21st century, to compete and succeed in a tech-driven era. Since technology embraces every aspect of our lives, so too must our children’s education embrace technology. The Foundation’s mission, therefore, is spot on. It’s exciting to part of its timely and visionary efforts.
Abel Casanova, Treasurer
Patty Chau, Secretary
My name is Patty Chau. I have been a parent volunteer at Running Springs Elementary for 7 years. I have a 6th grade son and a 3rd grade son. I am the current PTA President and have recently joined the Education Foundation Board. I have helped coach the Running Springs Track Team for several years, and I am the operating room charge nurse on the evening shift. I love to play tennis and volleyball.
Andrea Yamasaki, Board Member
About Andrea: Andrea Yamasaki is the Governing Board Member for Trustee Area One of the Orange Unified School District. She was elected in 2016. She is a member of the Legislative Committee and the Cities Schools Committee.
Her commitment to students and schools began 18 years ago as a highly involved parent of 3 children who attended Nohl Canyon Elementary School, El Rancho Charter School and Canyon High School. Her oldest recently graduated from the School of Art Institute of Chicago and is working on internet marketing and analytics. Her second child is studying Business Finance at UC Riverside. Her youngest just finished her first year at UC Irvine majoring in Computer Science. Both of her daughters have experience in teaching Code to students.
She served as a board member at all 3 of her children’s schools which includes PTSA President at both El Rancho Charter School and Canyon High School. She currently serves on the Orange Community Council PTA Executive Board, the Canyon Education Foundation Board and on the board the Asian Pacific Islander School Board Member Association. When her children were in primary school, she served on the Nohl Canyon School Association Executive Board and started the afterschool enrichment program and chaired the first carnival.
She is a founding committee member of Community Advancement through Renovation for Education, the organization that supported OUSD bond measures. She played an important role in the passage of Measure S facilities bond – a first for OUSD.
She also had leadership positions with the Canyon High School Girls Basketball Booster, Girl Scouts, National League of Young Men and American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life. She is passionate about fighting cancer as she lost her youngest brother to cancer.
Andrea considers it a privilege to be on the Education Foundation of Anaheim Hills. The needs and concerns of parents is constantly evolving and feels that it is important to connect with and support parents with young children.
Andrea Lindstrom, Board Member
About Andrea: Andrea Lindstrom has a diverse background in Sales and Marketing, EdTech, Theater Arts as well as Business Operations. She is a huge STEAM advocate. Most recently she has been involved with assisting the Running Springs Elementary Robotics team. She has 2 students at Running Springs, one in Mrs. Morrissey’s 4th grade class and one in Mrs. Slater’s 3rd grade class. She is looking forward to helping EFAH and RSE continue to provide EdTech and STEAM opportunities to our RSE students.
Danielle Alcaraz, Board Member
About Danielle: Danielle Alcaraz and her family have been a resident of Anaheim Hills for 16 years. The Alcaraz family has been an active member of the community as volunteers, a small business owner of Sorrento Valley Plumbing, and parents of a 5th and 8th grader who are very active with extra curricular activities.
Danielle has excelled in a variety of senior strategic sales and business development roles in the education technology industry.
Danielle is passionate about making education the most powerful tool to change the world for the best.
Caitlin Hirchman, Board Member
Caitlin Hirchman is an Orange County native, having grown up in nearby Yorba Linda. She has a bachelor’s degree from California State University at Fullerton in Business Finance. She has a successful background in sales, and health insurance training, consulting, and management. When the opportunity to be a stay at home mom presented itself Caitlin knew it was the right path. She is passionate about spending quality time with her family, and being involved in her children’s education and activities. Caitlin believes that every child has a gift, and it takes an involved, caring community to provide children with exposure to new opportunities, ideas, and pathways so each child may discover their talents. She is
honored to be an EFAH Board Member, and looks forward to helping continue the mission of developing our students to be 21 st century leaders. Caitlin is the Book Fair Chairperson, as well as the Golf Tournament Chairperson. She lives in Anaheim Hills with her husband David (an Anaheim Hills native), and their two children, Stella, age 7, and Isaac, age 3.
Reza Mortezaie, Board Member
My daughter, Moneli, started as a kindergartener at Running Spring’s elementary school in Fall 2019 and according to her, “Running Springs is the best school in the world”. Last year, my wife, Golnaz, and I became
active with the Running Spring’s PTA and Dads Club and really enjoyed getting to know and work with so many great people.
With respect to my educational and professional background, I am currently a Transpiration Engineer with Caltrans (Calif. Dept. of Transportation) working on various statewide projects, including I-5 widening in Orange County and seismic retrofit studies of various freeway bridges. Before Caltrans, I worked with a number of consulting companies on a variety of projects. The most notable projects included Presidio Parkway Freeway in San Francisco, Port of Cristóbal in Panama, Regional Connector Metro line in Los Angeles, and High-Speed Rail in Fresno. I am also a registered Civil Engineer and Geotechnical Engineer with the State of California.
I obtained my Bachelor and Master of Science (BSc and MSc) in Civil Engineering in 2000 and 2004, respectively. Subsequently, I obtained my second MSc and doctorate (PhD) from University of California, Los
Angeles (UCLA) in 2010 and 2012 in Civil Engineering with a focus on Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering. During my graduate studies, I established the “CalGeo Student Chapter at UCLA” in 2007 and served as its first president and graduate advisor for 3 years. Today, the chapter is one of the most active chapters at UCLA’s Civil Engineering department and has won several statewide awards. I also served as a board member and chair of the ASCE Geo-Institute Los Angeles chapter from 2013 to 2019. I have published several papers in high-impact factor journals such as Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering journal and ASCE Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering. Finally, I teach as a part-time faculty at CalState Long Beach (CSULB) and University of California, Irvine (UCI).
I am eager and hopeful to be able to bring my knowledge and experience to the Education Foundation of Anaheim Hills (EFAH).
Past Board Members
- Janet Kwon, Founder, Board Member Emeritus
- Kristin Dunn, Founder, Board Member Emeritus
- Brandi Lau, Board Member Emeritus
- Katherine Heidelman, Board Member Emeritus
- Steven Thurman, Board Member Emeritus
- Andy Howard, Founder
- Tamara Murphy, Founder
- Jia Dadabhoy, Founder
- Keri Prochnow, Founder
- Vaishali Bhatt, Former Board Member
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