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SVP International

Staff, Board & Committees


Ann Herzog-Olson, Executive Director

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Ann brings more than 25 years of nonprofit development and marketing communications experience to SVP-MN. She is a native to Minnesota and has spent her entire career with a heart on making Minnesota a better place to live and work. Read More »

Esther Goldberg-Davis, Deputy Director

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Esther is a seasoned development professional with over 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector. She is passionate about working to improve the lives of youth and families. Read More »

Lea Blackwell Favor, Operations Director

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Lea has spent her career working with young people from under-resourced communities and thrives in settings that are youth-centered, culturally-responsive and academically enriching. Read More »


Our Board is made up of SVP Partners who are actively involved in engaged philanthropy. They are leaders from the Twin Cities who provide organizational leadership and oversight to SVP and they are committed to addressing issues to help underserved teens prosper.

Linda Ireland, Board Chair

Linda’s passion for collaborating to tackle complex change brought her to SVP, and she has been a Partner since 2017. She is known for connecting disparate ideas to move people and organizations forward – a provocateur, a CEO once called her. Read More »

Josh Susser, Treasurer

Josh Susser has more than 17 years of professional experience in financial services. In 2018, he founded Cascadily LLC, which manages private equity investments for institutional investors. Read More »

Jeff Arnesen

Jeff Arnesen is Senior Vice President at Marsh where he is responsible for developing and managing private equity [...] Read More »

Linda Bryant

Linda Bryant is Senior Vice President of Programs at EMERGE and has more than 25 years of direct service and leadership experience. Read More »

Ben Burgum

Ben Burgum joined SVP in 2013 on the advice of a friend and fell in love with both the engaged community of Partners and the efficient model of making an impact. Read More »

Nathan Espinosa

Nathan has 20 years of marketing experience in product management, marketing communications and strategic [...] Read More »

Dionne Gumbs

Dionne Gumbs is CEO and Founder of GenEQTY, a digital financial services platform that aims to close the gender gap by providing women and women led enterprises with access to lending and investment products. Read More »

Carla Pavone

Carla Pavone has been a member of Social Venture Partners since 2012, serving on the due diligence team, as a lead [...] Read More »

Brian Peterson

Brian re-entered the nonprofit sector in 2018 - after four years as a nonprofit consultant at CliftonLarsonAllen - [...] Read More »

Christi Strauss

Christi Strauss brings almost 30 years of general management experience leading businesses for General Mills around the world. Read More »

Daniela Vasan

Daniela Vasan graduated from the University of Virginia with a double major in Spanish Literature and Culture and Middle Eastern Studies with a focus in Arabic. Read More »

Veronica Williams

Veronica Williams is Director of Development at the Minnesota Council of Churches. Veronica earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Minnesota and her Master of Nonprofit Management degree from Hamline University. Read More »


Thank you to the following volunteers for sharing their brain power, time and financial support to help guide SVP’s activities in the Twin Cities. Most of our volunteers are SVP Partners.

Corporate Development Team
Dionne Gumbs*
Molly Nelson
Christi Strauss*

Equity Team
Suzanne Oh
Ellie Singer
Steve VanTassel
Guff Van Vooren – Chair
Daniela Vasan
Veronica Williams

Programs Committee
Mary Dee Hicks
Linda Ireland*
Dana Mortenson
Drew Moss
Holly Parker
Kirk Smith
Christi Strauss*
Leslye Suarez
Guff Van Vooren
Ellen Walthour
John Watson

Investment Committee
Rhoda Beaird
Nancy Chang
Cyndie Leary
John Mauriel
Jeff Parker
Ellie Singer
Josh Susser
Charles Talbert – Co-Chair
Steve VanTassel – Co-Chair

Marketing/Communications Committee
Deb Garvey
Nathan Espinosa* – Chair
John Watson

SVP Network Liaison
Guff Van Vooren

Connections to Independence Consulting Team
Jeff Parker
Jeanne Rudelius – Lead Partner
Josh Susser

Cookie Cart Consulting Team
Dan Kinsella – Lead Partner
Christi Strauss*

Elpis Enterprises Consulting Team
Joan Gudorf
Chris Harms
Jayme Keseley – Co-Lead Partner
Ellie Singer – Lead Partner

New Vision Foundation Consulting Team
Jim Anderson
Carlee Donohue
Steve VanTassel
Veronica Williams
Adam Ziskind – Lead Partner

Roots for the Home Team Consulting Team
Marshall Lehman – Lead Partner

Sisterhood Boutique Consulting Team
Christi Strauss*

The BrandLab Consulting Team
Craig Gudorf
Dionne Gumbs*
Linda Ireland* – Lead Partner
Trevor McKinnon
Josh Reimnitz
Kirk Smith
John Watson

*Member of SVP Board