Who We Are
Laurie Black, president and CEO of LJ Black Consulting and president of RS Lawrence Development, is well known as a keen and prolific producer of new and innovative ideas. Ms. Black is a passionate advocate; developing and funding programs and augmenting supportive housing for people who are chronically homeless and have chronic mental health conditions.
Ms. Black has been a part of the political and business landscape in San Diego for over thirty-five years.
Half of her career has been spent working for local, state and federal candidates for elective office. From 1986 to 1991 she operated her first business, which included political fundraising, issue development, press relations and implementation of campaign strategies. Ms. Black served as Chief of Staff for Congresswoman Lynn Schenk where she assisted in developing the Congresswoman’s legislative and political agenda. She served as a San Diego Port Commissioner from 2007 – 2009 using her environmental credentials to help create the Green Port Program enhancing the Port’s role as an environmental steward of San Diego Bay. And she sat on CCDC (Center City Redevelopment Center) where she advocated for a downtown homeless shelter and helped support Veterans Village along with other critical housing needs.
Ms. Black is well known for her advocacy on homelessness and disabled veterans, and has presented her ideas on mitigating homelessness at the International Downtown Association's Annual Conference as well as other national and international conferences.
She is also recognized nationally for her passion and expertise in patient advocacy, specifically those with Melanoma needing help mitigating their healthcare and treatment possibilities and opportunities. UCSD Moore’s Cancer Center named her Caregiver of the Year in 2012 and in February 2014 Vista Hill Foundation named her Mental Health Advocate of the Year.
Laurie was most recently appointed to be a Trustee on the UCSD Foundation Board where she volunteers with critical issues related to the university as well as community building. Laurie is a connector and has utilized her ability to connect to the San Diego region to state and federal elected officials as well as change agents in the United States.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science with a minor in Women's Studies from San Diego State University.
Ms. Black was married to the late Robert Lawrence, a local attorney and real estate developer. Laurie has four adult children, two grandsons and granddaughter, and presently lives in the Banker’s Hill neighborhood of San Diego.
CAPT Lynelle Boamah is a native of Baltimore, Maryland and attended the College of Notre Dame of Maryland, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Biology in 1990. Upon graduation from college, she studied cytogenetics at the Johns Hopkins University. She was selected for a competitive Health Professions Scholarship and attended the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine (MD, 1995). She was commissioned as a Lieutenant in 1995 and completed pediatric internship in the newly integrated National Capital Consortium Pediatric Residency Program from 1995-1996. She was selected for residency training in Pediatrics at the Naval Medical Center Portsmouth where she was elected Chief of Pediatric Residents and graduated in 1998.
After residency completion, she was assigned to Naval Hospital Twentynine Palms and served as a general pediatrician from 1998 to 2001. She moved into a graduate medical education role during her next assignment at the Naval Medical Center San Diego pediatric residency program in 2001. She was then selected for full-time out-service fellowship training in Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital from 2004 to
2007. During fellowship training, she earned a Master’s degree in Medical Education and Curriculum Development (MEd, 2008) from the University of Cincinnati, graduating magna cum laude.
Upon completion of fellowship, CAPT Boamah returned to Naval Medical Center San Diego in 2007 and established a robust practice of pediatric gastroenterology. She served as Associate Pediatric Residency Program Director from 2008-2011 and was selected as residency Program Director in 2011. She served in this role until 2016, overseeing the administrative requirements for graduate medical education in Pediatrics and contributing to Navy Medicine’s readiness priorities. During this time, she deployed as an individual augmentee to Palawan, Philippines in support of Balikatan 2012 Joint Humanitarian Assistance Mission. She was competitively selected as the Director for Medical Services, Medical Treatment Facility, USNS MERCY (T-AH 19) from 2015-2017, contributing to Navy Medicine’s mission to support the fleet and the warfighter by projecting medical power forward.
CAPT Boamah is the recipient of several awards and medals to include, the Executive Council of the Medical Staff Master Clinician award, the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medals and the Navy-Marine Corps Achievement Medal in addition to one unit medal. She holds an academic appointment of Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at the Uniformed Services University. She has given both national and international presentations on evaluating and teaching medical trainees. She was selected to attend the MedXellence course for healthcare executives and completed a one-year program in healthcare leadership at the University of San Diego Health Leadership Academy. She will complete requirements for Joint Professional Military Education I in August 2022. She is board-certified in general pediatrics and pediatric gastroenterology and holds active memberships in the American College of Healthcare Executives and the North American Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition.
She completed a tour as Executive Officer, Medical Treatment Facility, USNS MERCY (T-AH 19) from 2017-2019, completing two Pacific Partnership deployments and Rim of the Pacific Exercise 2018. She went on to serve as the thirteenth commanding officer of Naval Hospital Twentynine Palms/Robert E. Bush Naval Hospital, the Navy’s first African-American female medical corps officer to hold such a position. There, CAPT Boamah led the transition of healthcare delivery and management under the authority, direction, and control of the Defense Health Agency, while simultaneously overseeing military readiness under the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery. Upon completion of her commanding officer tour, she assumed the senior executive medicine position of Fleet Surgeon, U.S. Third Fleet in July 2021. She is responsible to Commander, Third Fleet to provide counsel, planning and execution of health services support to operational forces and civic authorities while supporting certification of combat ready forces and major fleet exercises.
Dr. Brar is an Internal Medicine physician who has always had a deep love of science and for translating complex ideas into accessible information. She is a graduate of Louisiana State University School of Medicine at New Orleans and the Scripps Clinic Internal Medicine Residency, where she was selected Chief medical Resident in 1998.
After beginning her career at Scripps Clinic Torrey Pines General Medicine (1999 to 2006), she was selected to join the Private Internal Medicine Center at Scripps Green Hospital where she practiced concierge medicine. Dr. Brar left Scripps clinic in 2008 to establish her own solo concierge medicine practice in La Jolla. During her five years in private practice, she obtained a certificate from the Stanford School of Entrepreneurship as well as certification by the American Board of Integrative and Holistic Medicine. Pamila became active in the American Academy of Private Physicians, first as a board member, then serving as President from 2015 to 2017. This organization promotes the doctor-patient relationship and the business models that enable it.
After sixteen years in practice, she made the shift from general Internal Medicine to Precision Medicine when she joined the team at Human Longevity, Inc. in 2015 as the founding Medical Director of the Health Nucleus. She has also served as Chief Medical Officer of the J. Craig Venter Institute in La Jolla.
Pamila currently enjoys using her skills to support both the clinical and commercial growth of HLI.
Michael Brooks holds a bachelor’s degree from UCLA in Business Economics with a minor in Accounting, and is working towards an Executive MBA at the Marshall School at the University of Southern California. Mr. Brooks is the founder and CEO of B Squared Real Estate a full-service brokerage and property management company which specializes in Commercial and Multi-Family Income Producing Properties as well as Residential Real Estate. He is also the founder and CEO of Legacy Property Management, and the Co-Founder and President of B2RE Property Management. Mr. Brooks oversees a management portfolio of commercial and residential assets valued at over $180 million and is the asset manager for over a dozen entities which own multifamily properties. He also oversees the operation of over 60 monthly furnished rentals in the hospitality space and holds a California Brokers license. Mr. Brooks is actively working on a pre-launch technology startup in the estate planning industry and is the founder and president of the Edward R. Brooks foundation which endeavors to support underserved children by harnessing the transformational nature of sports, and squash specifically. Prior to forming B Squared Real Estate, Mr. Brooks began his career in a rotational management program at AT&T Communications. After multiple rotations in Operations, Mr. Brooks embarked on his sales career within the company first in the Global Markets organization which supported AT&T’s largest clients, and then later opening the Southern California office for AT&T’s Consulting company, ultimately earning AT&T’s prestigious Diamond Club Award for Sales Excellence.
P. Kay Coleman is President & CEO of Del Mar Venture Group, LLC, an angel investment firm that she co-founded in 2005. She has 30+ years of management consulting experience in strategic planning, marketing, and process improvement.
Kay serves as the Immediate Past Chair and Vice Chair of The San Diego Regional Policy & Innovation Center, a partnership between the Brookings Institution, The County of San Diego, and San Diego Foundation. In March 2023, she was chosen as one of San Diego’s Top 50 Nonprofit Board Leaders of Influence. She is also a Board member and former Board Chair of San Diego Foundation. She was named Director of the Year by the San Diego Corporate Directors Forum in 2021. In addition, Kay serves on the national board of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN). She was conferred the title of Chair Emerita of the American Cancer Society’s (ACS) Southern California Area Board in 2020. She was recently appointed to the County of San Diego’s Civil Service Commission. She also serves as President of the Board of Directors of the Westin Mission Hills Resort & Villas in Rancho Mirage.
Kay earned her MBA in Finance & Strategic Planning from the Wharton School of Business. She received a MS in Counseling Psychology and a BA in English with High Honors from the University of Tennessee. She lives in Encinitas, CA.
Davies is currently a member of the Francis Bacon Authentication Committee, which published the artist’s Catalogue Raisonne in 2016. His doctoral dissertation on Francis Bacon was later expanded and published by Garland Press, and he has subsequently published extensively on Bacon’s work. Davies received his A.B., summa cum laude, (1970), M.F.A. (1972), and Ph.D. (1976) from the Department of Art and Archaeology at Princeton University.
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Ian received his BA in Religion from Williams College and served as an Officer in the United States Marine Corps, deploying to Okinawa, Japan and Australia, before finishing his commitment at Camp Pendleton. After an honorable discharge from the USMC, Ian consulted back to the government for many years in the area of tactical systems engineering, and for a brief period worked in commercial network engineering during the internet boom.
In 2013, Ian made a significant career pivot to follow his growing passion for financial services. In response to seeing so many people of all ages feeling paralyzed by skepticism, frustration, and information overload, Ian founded Reviresco Wealth Advisory, an independent fee-based fiduciary firm based in San Diego. The firm leverages its independence, researching unique solutions to client’s shifting challenges throughout their financial lifecycle.
Seeing a similar prevalence of confusion and anxiety in the area of college planning, magnified by severe cost increases for higher education, Ian founded Reviresco College Planning in 2018. Emphasizing the difference between college savings and college planning, the firm provides families and students with the type of education, tools, and strategies they really need to improve their quality of life throughout all phases of the college planning and college funding processes.
In his free time, Ian enjoys spending time with his wife and two children, working out at the gym, getting in as much “beach time” as possible, and cultivating his appreciation for Eastern Philosophy and Taoism.
Robert has been volunteering as a teacher to Access students for a number of years on the topic of financial literacy, which has been a key success factor for our kids as they transition to their new lives at college.
Robert lives in San Diego with his wife Cairyann, and while now retired, can still can be seen gracing local squash courts and racing cars at tracks across America.
Kevin is a Principal in Barney & Barney’s Employee Benefits Division where he serves as the Technology and Life Sciences Practice Group Leader. Kevin joined Barney & Barney in 2002, and became a Principal in 2009.
In addition to being a partner in Barney & Barney’s Benefits practice, Kevin has always been an active member of the tennis community. He was a member of his university’s varsity tennis team and participates in USTA league play throughout the year. Kevin is a member of BIOCOM’s Human Resources Committee and earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in International Affairs from the University Colorado, at Boulder. He is married and has two children.
Renato Paiva has served as the Executive Director of Access Youth Academy since it began. During the past 15 years, he has ably led Access to produce outstanding results and has helped Access to be regarded as one of the leading urban squash and youth development programs in the nation. During that time, Access students have achieved 100% college graduation rates, secured$9.7 million dollars in scholarships, and 13 national squash titles. Working closely with the Access Board, he led the design and construction of state-of-the-art education and squash facility located in a federally designated Promise zone in Southeastern San Diego that opened in June 2021.
A native of Brazil, Renato became an internationally ranked squash player and competed in several countries. Prior to Access, Renato coached in several colleges, including serving as Assistant Squash Coach at Harvard University and a Head Coach at USC. In 2010, Paiva was named Development Coach of the Year by U.S. Squash and was honored as 2011 Coach of the Year by the U.S. Congressional Caucus on Youth Sports in Washington, DC. His wife, Renato and his staff are supported by a dedicated board of directors, mentors, and volunteers.
Anamica is a Microsoft 365 and Azure consultant aimed at helping customers drive maximum value from Microsoft cloud (Office365, M365, Windows, Edge, Teams, Azure). Helping customers identify and diagnose technical, architectural, and competitive blockers and respective solutions for sales opportunities and usage decision blockers and ensuring that these solutions are implemented. She is keenly focused on propelling enterprise-wide success through proactive process engineering and comprehensive, strategic initiatives. She drives exceptional across-the-board performance by revitalizing under-performing areas and capturing new growth opportunities. Her track record of success has been reinforced by ensuring others' success and encouraging professional growth at all levels. She is a proven Program Management professional with recognition in a successful startup.
Blair served as President and CEO of Rady Children’s Hospital for 26 years from 1980-2006. He received his B.A. from Amherst College where he played squash and tennis, and his law degree from the University of Pennsylvania. He was a nationally ranked squash player. He is a faculty member at the UCSD Rady School of Management, where he teaches a course in leadership and communication. He is a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and serves on the board of Health Care without Harm, an environmental health advocacy organization. Previously, he served as a medical-legal specialist for the National Institutes of Health, on the faculty of the Yale School of Medicine, as an Assistant Vice President at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in Princeton, as Vice President and Director of the hospitals and clinics at Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation in La Jolla, and on the US-Mexico Border Health Commission. He is a prolific author and speaker about a variety of health care issues. He lives in La Jolla with his wife Georgia, who is a professor in the UCSD School of Medicine. They have two daughters and four grandchildren. Blair believes strongly in the mission of Access in transforming young lives.
Joe Sammartino is a corporate and real estate trial attorney in San Diego, California. He has litigated civil cases on behalf of and against major international companies and has defended the rights of individuals in state and federal courts throughout California and around the United States. He has significant experience in litigation involving real estate disputes, contract disputes, business disputes, partnership disputes, trade secret disputes, real estate matters, construction, construction defect, product liability, professional liability, insurance bad faith, and employment matters. Joe has handled all aspects of litigation from pre-litigation demands, negotiations, and settlements through the filing of complaints, discovery, comprehensive motion practice, depositions – having served as lead counsel in over 350 depositions – mediation and settlement, arbitration, or trial and verdict in state and federal courts, including appeals. Joe has served as outside general counsel for clients, providing a wide-range of services including: corporate structures, dispute avoidance and resolution, drafting and reviewing contracts, nondisclosure agreements, partnership agreements, professional services agreements, financing structures and deals, real estate leases and sales, easements, , severance agreements, employee handbooks, risk management policies and procedures, due diligence and letters of intent for mergers and acquisitions.
Joe is a San Diego native. He enjoys traveling, hiking, and playing sports with his three boys and their dog. He also enjoys playing tennis and padel.
America Sanchez was born and raised in Southeast San Diego. She has been a part of Access since 2013 and began the program after trying out twice in the 7th grade. Throughout her time during high school at Access, America participated in the SoCal League, SEA tournaments and programs like the Changemakers Tour. America graduated from The Preuss School UCSD in 2018 and went to pursue her bachelor’s degree at UCLA and majored in Geography with a minor in Labor Studies and was named the UCLA Friends of Geography Scholar. Being a student-worker, America worked in the Dining Halls, Academic Advising, and landed in the Urban Planning Graduate Admissions department at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs. All the while during her senior year at UCLA, America began working at the Brentwood Country Club of Los Angeles as a Receptionist. Throughout time, America found the connection of Admissions with Membership at the Brentwood Country Club and began assisting the Membership Department which convinced her to stay in Los Angeles after graduating. Being at Brentwood for close to two years, America has now been promoted to be the Member Services Coordinator.
America has been an advocate for expanding squash in Los Angeles and has volunteered for the Squash PLAYLA initiative and will now transition to helping to launch Access Youth Academy LA in the Fall. America is excited to begin this new chapter in Access and continue to make communities powerful!
Greg Scherman is married with two daughters. He co-founded Access Youth Academy with Chris Walker in 2006 with the goal of giving back to the San Diego community at large by helping under-served youth. He is the President of The Scherman Energy Group, consultants to the oil and gas and solar industries and has been active in real estate and other business ventures since graduating from UCSD. He is a competitive athlete - formerly a bike racer and now a top amateur squash player, having competed in the Maccabiah Games in 2009. He is a level 1 certified squash coach and one daughter was a former captain of the Cornell women's squash team. Greg is excited to be actively engaged in all facets of Access Youth Academy and the new facility.
Ganisha graduated from the University of California, Riverside with two bachelor’s degrees in English and Spanish Literature and later received her master’s degree in education from Claremont Graduate University. She went on to teach High School English at El Monte High for two years. Here, so connected closely with her students, bringing a fun and relatable learning experience to her classroom. In her two years, she started the school’s first recycling program, held a teachers vs. students volleyball fundraiser, and served on the parent-teacher board. She ended her career as a high school teacher to pursue her passion for the family business. In 2009, Ganisha and her family created a hotel and retail management company, Sethi Management, Inc., which allowed them to bring all operating functions of their various entities in-house amidst a recession. This helped them engage with the businesses they owned at a deeper level, improving company culture and bottom-line. Ganisha played the role of Director of Human Resources for two years, working directly with all entities and associates to keep Sethi Management organized and running. She earned her Certified Hotel Administrator certification and served on various hotel owner association boards. Now, as Chief Executive Officer, Ganisha continues to make an impact on the company by promoting communication, clarity, and creativity. Ganisha believes that the way to success is with and through the people of the company.
Kevin D. Smith is an active trial lawyer who has spent the majority of his professional life trying cases on behalf of Fortune 500 companies and major corporations. In his 30 years of practice, Kevin has defended commercial, professional liability, product liability, transportation, and catastrophic matters in state and federal courts. Despite having to frequently overcome difficult challenges on liability and damages in high exposure cases, Kevin has obtained victories on behalf of his clients in an impressive ninety four percent of the cases he has tried. This has resulted in Kevin being elected to the prestigious American Board of Trial Advocates and regularly honored as a Southern California “Super Lawyer.”
Susan Taylor represents Scripps Health to the community, patient groups and leaders throughout the region. Susan joined Scripps in 2011 after more than 15 years as an award-winning San Diego news anchor for NBC. As director of external affairs, Susan plays a critical role in raising awareness and understanding of Scripps’ programs, facilities and services. She also helps educate a broad range of audiences via speeches, and YouTube videos about the significant changes under way in health care locally and nationally. www.Scripps.org/videos
A 2011 recipient of the San Diego Women Who Mean Business Award, Susan was honored in 2019 by the SD Police Officers Foundation for being a spokesperson for the campaign against cyber-bullying. She was on the board of LEAD San Diego from 2012-2018.
Her particular focus is how globalization and rapid changes in technology are affecting the social dynamics and economic challenges of regions across America.
A co-founder in 1984 of the internationally recognized CONNECT program, Walshok has been an integral player in the evolution of San Diego’s innovation economy for more than 30 years.
BY STEVE ATKINSON
JULY 29, 2021
It begins with an after-school program of academics and squash from 7th through the 12th grade. Students visit colleges, prep for the SAT and ACT, get help with college applications, and of course, play in squash tournaments ...
BY ELISABETH FRAUSTO
JULY 9, 2021
La Jollan Blair Sadler, a former president of Rady Children’s Hospital, is using retirement to continue his crusade to squash social inequities via Access Youth Academy ...
BY M.G. PEREZ
FEBRUARY 2, 2022
“Why is it called squash? Because the ball is squashy,” said Deon Saffery, the Academy’s squash manager. She was recruited from the United Kingdom to come to San Diego and teach children as young as 10 how to play the centuries-old game ...
A 501(c)(3) non-profit organization committed to transform the lives of underserved youth. Access was founded in 2006 by Greg Scherman and Chris Walker, who believed the San Diego community could benefit from an urban squash program that provided opportunity and support unlike any other non-profit in the region.
Federal Tax-ID (EIN) 20-5119659
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