Senior Management

Lena French

Lena French
Executive Director

Lena French, MBA, is the Executive Director of the Blind Children’s Center. Ms. French is a compassionate, dynamic leader who has served as the Center’s Executive Director for the past two years, after serving as its Director of Finance and Assistant Executive Director for 15 years. She has been employed with the Center for 29 years in all. During her tenure she has been a catalyst for tremendous growth, as the Center has tripled its enrollment in the past six years through the addition of the Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd Grade Programs, augmenting the existing Infant, Preschool and Pre-K Programs. Ms. French takes a hands-on approach to leadership, and frequently takes the time to work with teachers and students first-hand, in addition to engaging in fundraising and friendraising for the Center. She is admired by staff, students, parents and alumni, and has been a passionate advocate of growing services to those in-need, particularly families from low-income circumstances and children with multiple-disabilities, who now make up a greater percentage of the Center’s student body than ever before.

Fernanda Armenta-Schmitt, Ph.D.

Fernanda Armenta-Schmitt, Ph.D.
Director of Education & Family Services

Fernanda Armenta-Schmitt, Ph.D., is the Director of Education & Family Services at the Blind Children’s Center, as well as its Assistant Executive Director. Dr. Armenta-Schmitt, who has been employed at the Center for 27 years, supervises the its multidisciplinary staff of teachers, assistants, specialists, social workers, consultants and mentors in an inclusive, family-focused educational environment. Dr. Armenta-Schmitt has extensive experience in the arena of early intervention and serving families of young children with significant disabilities, and has authored several publications dedicated to serving families with diverse backgrounds and needs. As a licensed clinical psychologist, she has worked in multicultural community mental health settings, and has taught graduate-level courses at several universities throughout the Los Angeles area.

Board of Directors

Executive Committee

Danette M. Beck
President & Chair Delta Gamma Committee
Managing Director, Marsh Co.

Jeffrey Leitzinger, Ph.D.
Founder & President, Econ One Research

C. Herbert Joiner
1st Vice President & Parent of past Center student
Primerica Financial Plans

Scott E. Schaldenbrand
2nd Vice President
CFO, Global Supply Company

Lawrence F. Meyer
Law Offices of Lawrence F. Meyer

Lisa D. Hansen
Chair, Kenneth T. & Eileen L. Norris Foundation

Jennifer Brown
Recording Secretary & Co-Chair The Tom Sullivan Blind Children’s Center Celebrity Golf Classic Committee
Senior Sales Consultant, A.V.I.

Gregory J. Grande
Past President, Chair Planned Giving Committee & Co-Chair Blind Children’s Center Fall Golf Classic
Vice President, BNY Mellon Wealth Management

Directors at Large

David R. Braun, CLU
Director & Co-Chair The Tom Sullivan Blind Children’s Center Celebrity Golf Classic Committee
SVP, Highland Capital Brokerage

Mark Correa
Vice President, Wells Fargo Advisors

Patricia Craine, M.A., L.M.F.T.
Licensed Psychotherapist

Kevin T. Gordon
Senior Vice President, Regional Manager, Wells Fargo

Sandra G. Hubert
Community volunteer

Sherwin J. Isenberg, M.D.
Director & Chair Research Committee
Professor of Pediatric Ophthalmology, Jules Stein Eye Institute, UCLA

Samuel Masket, M.D.
Clinical Professor, Jules Stein Eye Institute, UCLA

Lynnel P. Muñoz
Regional Vice President, SAP

Carolyn Newberry
Director & Classroom Volunteer
Community volunteer

Octavio Pescador, Ph.D.
Director & Parent of a past Center student
UCLA Professor

Pilar C. Pettys
Vice President, Wealth Management Advisor, U.S. Bank

Marc Rojas
Director & Co-Chair Blind Children’s Center Fall Golf Classic
Officer, Los Angeles Police Department

Ann Ruth
Community volunteer

Marion Ruth
Owner, Ruth Realty

Fred A. Sayeg
Producer, Fred Sayeg Productions

Azadeh Shladovsky

Stephen Simmons
Features Editor, Beverly Hills Courier

Mark T. West
Director & Chair Finance Advisory Committee
Client Success Director, Oracle Cloud Analytics

Andrew Wincel
Founder, Chairman & CEO, Inviso Group

Ina Zec
Director & Parent of a past Center student
Community volunteer

Delta Gamma