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2019 Office Closure Dates

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Management Team

Karae Lisle, Executive Director

Karae Lisle has more than 20 years of leadership experience in both the private and non-profit sectors. She moved to California in 1998 to work for Oracle, founded a boutique strategy consulting firm in 2001, and went on to join Shelter Network as CEO in 2011; the next year spearheaded the merger between InnVision and Shelter Network, (now LifeMoves, $20M budget) which created the largest provider of homeless shelter and services for Silicon Valley, providing 1000 beds (nightly) to individuals, families, veterans.

Before entering the nonprofit sector, Karae worked in a variety of technology companies, beginning with a sales support role at Burroughs Corporation. Progressing through client-facing and revenue generating roles, Karae developed her executive/management acumen.  As a leader, Karae has a reputation as a hard worker that is accountable, honest, and compassionate with the Board, staff and clients. 
Karae’s community engagement includes mentoring young professionals, and serving on the boards of the Harvard Business School Tech Alumni Association, and as Chair of Mercado Global, a nonprofit serving indigenous women in Guatemala. She served as an Adjunct Professor at the University of San Francisco, and San Jose State in the MBA, MS and undergraduate programs from 2000 to 2010. 

Karae holds an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a B.S. in Management Information Systems from Florida State University. In 2014, Karae received a Packard Foundation scholarship to attend the Stanford Graduate School of Business’ Executive Program for NonProfit Leaders. 

Pam Brandin, Executive Director, MPA (Retired)

Pam has been Executive Director of Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired since 1994 and was the Director of Development here for the five previous years.  She holds a Masters of Public Administration from College of Notre Dame and a Bachelor of Arts in Biological Sciences from Stanford University.  Pam is on the board of the Center for Excellence in Nonprofits as well as the Stanford Historical Society.  She recently served as chair of the national VisionServe Alliance board and completed terms on the Stanford Alumni Association and Junior League of Palo Alto*Midi-Peninsula boards of directors.  Pam has previously been president of the Palo Alto Rotary Club, chair of the boards of the Center for Excellence in Nonprofits, YMCA of the Mid-Peninsula and Family Service Mid-Peninsula, and president of the Junior League of Palo Alto-Mid Peninsula.  In 2011 Pam received the Visionary Leadership Award from VisionServe Alliance in recognition and appreciation for her "contributions as a Visionary Leader."

Sharon Hudson, Associate Director M.A., COMS, CVRT

Sharon has been a Rehabilitation Specialist for the Blind and Visually Impaired for 25 years.  She received her MA at Western Michigan University in 1983 as a Rehabilitation Teacher for the Blind.  Then in 1990, she worked full time and attended San Francisco State University to receive her teaching credential as an Orientation and Mobility Instructor.  Sharon is a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist (COMS) and a Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (CVRT).  She was named Associate Director in 2008.

Kristin Green, Supervisor of Social Services, L.C.S.W.

Kristin is very excited to come on board recently at the Vista Center. Prior to coming here, she worked as Program Manager/ Clinical Supervisor at Alum Rock Counseling Center in San Jose, and also as a social worker at the Palo Alto VA, Rady’s Hospital in San Diego, and Didi Hirsh Community Health Center in Los Angeles, CA. Kristin has a B.A. in Psychology from Northwestern University and a Master’s in Social Welfare (Social Work) from University of California, Los Angeles. She has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker since 2009.

Garlyn Serame, Director of Clinic Services

Garlyn has worked in our Low Vision Clinic since 1996 and has been involved in the optical field for over 20 years. She received her undergraduate degree in Health Care Administration from San Jose State University and is also a certified Optician. She oversees the day-to-day operations, strategic planning, insurance billing and HIPAA compliance for both of our clinics. The most rewarding aspect of her job is knowing that we offer our clients the opportunity to regain their capacity to enjoy a task that they thought was unfeasible.

Christy Tall, Branch Manager, Santa Cruz

Christy has more than 18 years of experience in non-profit management and fund development, primarily working with social service and health organizations.  She joined Vista Center in February 2017, and is honored to oversee the operations of Vista Center in Santa Cruz County.  Christy has degrees in Journalism and Political Science from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. In addition to her professional experience, Christy is an active community volunteer, having served in several leadership roles including treasurer and secretary for Rio del Mar Parent Alliance , president and secretary of Rio del Mar School Site Council, and head coach for Girls on the Run.  In 2014, Christy helped launch the 21 Day Kindness Challenge, a national social benefit organization that empowers students to change their world through kindness.  Christy is inspired by Vista Center’s incredibly motivated and hardworking team of staff and volunteers, and is proud to be making a difference for people in our community who are blind or have visual impairments.

Kaleo Waxman, Director of Development

Kaleo joined Vista Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired in 2015 as its Associate Director of Development and became the Director of Development later that year.  Kaleo’s extensive experience in non-profit management and fund development includes alumni and volunteer program development; strategic planning and execution of event/development programs; and the building of comprehensive strategic marketing plans for branding concepts and social media.  She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications with a minor in Business Communication from the University of Washington and previously she was the Director of Public Relations and External Relations at Sofia University.  Kaleo is a member of the Woodside Priory Annual Fund Advisory Group and the Boys Leadership Committee for Portola Valley’s Young Men’s Service League.