In December, the Board of Supervisors voted to approve the creation of a five-year Women and Girls Initiative (WGI) to address the disproportionate disadvantages and burdens faced by LA County women and girls.
The motion, coauthored by Supervisors Kuehl and Solis, asks the County, with all its resources – its nearly $29 billion budget, 100,000 employees, and 37 departments –to identify and make recommendations about these differences in treatment and outcome.
On Tuesday, Supervisor Kuehl announced the appointment of three outstanding leaders to the WGI Governing Board:
Kafi D. Blumenfield is a philanthropic and social justice change-maker. Kafi’s inclusive vision of the world allows her to build bridges, inspire transformative change, and ensure that equity is at the heart of her leadership and impact.
Whether as the founding Executive Director of Discovery Cube LA or President/CEO of the Liberty Hill Foundation or Deputy Director of Neighbor to Neighbor, Kafi has mentored dozens of change agents from diverse backgrounds and collaborated with them to erect systems and create programs that expand opportunity and build more equitable communities. She believes that one test of leadership is the ability to foster and uplift the leadership of those around her in order to drive lasting change.
In her personal and professional philanthropy, Kafi is most proud of her efforts to support multi-racial coalitions advancing inclusive agendas for social, political and economic prosperity. Over the last decade, she has led fundraising efforts that resulted in millions of dollars for organizations serving the needs of Angelenos and organizing them to harness their own power to advance change.
Kafi is a board member of Tides, the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands and the James Irvine Foundation as well as an advisory board member of River LA, Pomona College’s Draper Center, Anti-Recidivism Coalition and Project X. Kafi is also a member of giving circles like the XX Fund, which enables women and girls to support organizations dedicated to helping women and girls reach their potential and strive for economic justice. She is an appointee to the California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls.
Kafi’s work has been recognized by organizations such as LAANE, the National Women’s Political Caucus LA Westside, National Council of Negro Women, and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. She holds a law degree from UCLA and a B.A. from Pomona College. She and her husband live in Woodland Hills with their two children.
A working mom and lifelong Angeleno, Wendy Greuel attended LA public schools and graduated from UCLA. Wendy started her career in public service working for her mentor, former Mayor Tom Bradley, where for ten years she worked on a wide range of public policy issues including child care, senior care homelessness, housing, public health, and education.
While in Mayor Bradley’s office, Wendy was a leader in the creation of LA’s BEST, a nationally recognized after-school program that provides a safe and supervised environment for children after school, and helped found the city’s first childcare center.
Wendy’s commitment to affordable housing led her to Washington D.C., where she served in President Clinton’s administration as the Deputy Director of the Interagency Council on Homelessness and later as the Southern California Regional Director at the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
In 1997, Wendy transitioned into the private sector, working for five years in the film industry as an executive at DreamWorks SKG. She provided strategic guidance in their civic and philanthropic efforts in the Los Angeles Region.
In 2002, Wendy was elected to the Los Angeles City Council and quickly developed an impressive record of accomplishment by creating jobs, preserving open space and reducing traffic congestion.
In 2009, Wendy was elected City Controller, becoming only the second woman in LA’s history elected to citywide office. As Controller, she brought a laser focus to examining government.
Jai Lee Wong is an independent consultant, and specializes in work with foundations and nonprofit organizations. Her clients have included The California Endowment, Marguerite Casey Foundation, the James Irvine Foundation, and Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy (AAPIP).
Jai served as the founding director of Women’s Leadership Circles (WLC), an organization to support women leaders in nonprofit organizations and to promote financial literacy. She was also a founding board member of the Los Angeles Women’s Foundation, now Women’s Foundation of California. Jai helped to start the National Pacific Asian Women’s Forum (NAPAWF), a national policy advocacy organization for Asian Pacific American women.
Jai worked as Senior Program Officer for The California Endowment, where she helped develop a framework for cultural competency in health care. Her portfolio included women’s health, workforce development, and environmental health. As Manager of the Southern California Region, she managed the staff in TCE’s Los Angeles, San Bernardino and San Diego regional offices. !
Prior to joining TCE, Jai worked as a Human Relations Consultant for the Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission. She played a key role in mediating relations between Korean Americans and African Americans, before and after the 1992 Civil Unrest. She also worked as a counselor at the UCLA Asian American Studies Center.
Jai is a recipient of numerous fellowships, including the Kellogg National Fellows Program of the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, and a Public Affairs Fellow at the Coro Foundation. She is also the recipient of the Upton Sinclair Award from the Liberty Hill Foundation, the LEAD Award from Women and Philanthropy, and Woman of the Year from the National Women’s Political Caucus. She was also a delegate to the 1995 United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, China.
Jai earned an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management, a BA from California State University, Los Angeles, and attended the University of California, Berkeley.
Jai emigrated from South Korea as a teenager and resides in Los Angeles, California with her husband, labor attorney Kent Wong. They are the proud parents of two adult sons.