meet our staff
Have a big idea? Want to learn about our collaborations? Interested in becoming a donor? Have a question about our grants offerings? Need assistance with an event registration? Want to apply to Leadership Evanston? Meet our staff and contact us with your questions or to discuss your interests and needs.
President and CEO
As President and CEO, Sol directs all ECF operations, acting as the Foundation's steward; demonstrating strategic leadership; and, overseeing the organization’s management, operations, and communications.
Sol joined ECF in June 2021. Most recently, he served as Executive Director for I Grow Chicago, a nonprofit in the Englewood community that works to eradicate the roots of violence. Previously, Sol served as the Chicago Executive Director of LIFT Incorporated, an organization that partners with parents to break the intergenerational cycle of poverty and to build prosperity. Earlier in his extensive career, Sol served in a variety of leadership roles for the Boys & Girls Club of Lansing, Cristo Rey Community Center and SCORE! Educational Centers. One of his earliest positions included serving as Youth Coordinator for the City of Evanston. Sol has lived and/or worked in Evanston for the past 15 years, and he is thrilled to be able to invest in the community where he and his wife are raising their family. He holds a BA and an MBA from Michigan State University.
Director of Donor Relations
As Director of Donor Relations, Robby plays a vital role in helping raise funds to advance ECF and its mission. He helps guide the Now!Fund, which currently provides 50% of ECF’s operating budget, through managing prospect data, coordinating fundraising-related activities, and working with the VP of Development to create cultivation and stewardship methods.
Robby joins ECF after working in Evanston for over 4 years at YWCA Evanston/North Shore as the Annual Fund Manager. While there, he worked closely with the Chief Development Officer and board members as a key staff member in the YWCA’s efforts to launch and successfully close a multi-million-dollar capital campaign. Robby has a vast experience in Donor Database Management and Special Event Coordination. He has worked in various Development and Marketing roles at Designs for Dignity, Aspire Chicago, and U.S. Green Building Council. He has also served on the Board of Directors for Wild Hearts, an organization that provides continuous, comprehensive care to animals with mobility issues.
Robby graduated from Sam Houston State University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts. Although Robby grew up in Texas, he has lived in Chicago since 2009, and has enjoyed working in Evanston since 2018.
Program Officer, Thriving Nonprofits
Jenna joined the Evanston Community Foundation team as Program Officer in December 2022 with a deep commitment to community building and collective healing. Jenna is a justice minded leader and advocate for equitable grantmaking practices. She is passionate about facilitating and lifting up community driven solutions and capacity building efforts to support nonprofit organizations to sustainably grow and thrive. Jenna values collaborative learning spaces and serves in leadership roles as both Regional Co-Chair for PEAK Grantmaking Midwest Chapter and Co-chair of the Funder Ally Caucus for Building Equity in Alignment for Environmental Justice. Jenna has a deep love of learning and has dedicated over 10-years to the study of contemplative and healing practices which she is honored to be able to share with community.
Jenna earned a B.A. in Anthropology from Purdue University. She is also a current candidate for a M.A. in Public Service Leadership at Loyola University Chicago. Additionally, Jenna holds a certification in Philanthropy and Nonprofit Organizations from Northwestern University and a Conscious Ambassador of Trauma Informed Care certification from DePaul University - Hansra Consulting.
Jenna is an Evanston resident and can often be found walking her dogs along the beautiful lakefront or discovering little treasures at local small businesses. Jenna is thrilled to be a part of the ECF team and grateful for the opportunity to serve the community she loves so dearly.
Director of Community Leadership
Karli is a proud alumna of DePaul University and she holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a Master of Arts in Organizational and Multicultural Communication. As an active community member and fourth generation Evanstonian, Karli is committed to the promotion of social and racial equity within education, public health, and human service sectors to improve the lives of people who live, work, and love her beloved community of Evanston. When Karli isn’t busy being a Mom to her 8-year-old son, she enjoys all that Evanston’s vibrant dining scene has to offer.
Vice President for Community Investment
Becca rejoined ECF in spring 2013 as Program Officer and began her service as Vice President for Community Investment in January 2020. She often describes herself as a “recovering development officer,” having previously held the post of Director of Major and Planned Gifts and Interim Vice President of Development at Planned Parenthood of Illinois (PPIL). Prior to her work at PPIL, she was Director of Development and Communications at ECF, and enjoyed previous development work at NorthShore University Health System (then, ENH) during its 2001 capital campaign.
Becca co-chairs Northwestern University’s Racial Equity and Community Partnership Grant Advisory Committee and is a Trustee and Allocations Chair of Episcopal Charities of Chicago. She serves on the Operations Steering and Racial Equity Committees of Evanston Cradle to Career as well as the Food Insecurity and Seniors COVID-19 Taskforces in the city of Evanston. She is a founding member of the Evanston Care Network, the Evanston Local Marketplace, and the Creative Commerce Committee of the City of Evanston. Becca was a 2018 McCormick Foundation Executive Fellow at Erikson Institute, 2018 SEED Training (Seeking Educational Equity & Diversity) participant, and a 2015 graduate of Leadership Evanston. Becca earned her Bachelors at the University of Illinois in Urbana/Champaign, with a Sociology major and Gerontology minor, and is currently pursuing an Executive Scholar Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. Becca has lived and/or worked in Evanston since 2001, and is now a proud “Skevanston” resident along with her husband and two young children.
Lauren Davis (she/they) joined ECF in October of 2022. Lauren is a native Evanstonian who cares deeply about giving back to the community that has given her so much. Lauren earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and teaching certification in Elementary Education from their beloved Spelman College. While not currently in the classroom, education remains very important to her and central to her life’s work. They also have a fiery passion for social justice which has been stoked by a family legacy of servant-leaders and trailblazers. Lauren is engaged with the community in several ways, including being a Minister at Second Baptist Church. They have also served as an Organizer with Evanston Fight for Black Lives, a board member with the Reparations Stakeholders Authority of Evanston, and junior board member of the James B. Moran Center. In their free time, Lauren enjoys being at the Lake, baking, spending time with her loved ones, and hanging out with their puppy child, Zuko.
Vice President of Finance and Operations
Cynthia has more than eight years of experience in finance and operations in the nonprofit sector. Prior to ECF, Cynthia worked at Lakeview Pantry, where, as the first finance employee, she was charged with bringing the 50-year old organization up to speed with modern financial processes and bringing all finances in-house from an outside accounting firm. Previously, Cynthia led the finance department at Urban Initiatives, where she formalized the financial, operations, and human resources processes over the course of her five year tenure. At both organizations, Cynthia also spearheaded the launching of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives.
Cynthia is a proud graduate from Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa. She’s also a graduate of the Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement (HACE)’s Mujeres de HACE leadership program. Most recently, Cynthia has been a part of the first cohort for the University of Chicago’s Rustandy Center Nonprofit Network for Strategic Operations and Finance Program. Cynthia grew up in the western suburbs of Chicago, and has now set roots in the Pilsen neighborhood.
Tori Foreman joined ECF in February, 2022. She is a long time Evanstonian, where she raised her four children. She has worked in Evanston for many years, including at the McGaw YMCA, District 65, Evanston Township High School, and the City of Evanston in the Parks and Recreation Department.
As a community member, Tori has volunteered and served on several boards, including the Evanston Public Library Board. Tori is a people person and loves to interact with folks from all walks of life. She enjoys the outdoors and recently started horticulture classes at the University of Illinois.
Director of Leadership and Training
Since 2014, Jennifer Moran has been the director of Leadership Evanston, the Evanston Community Foundation’s signature program. Jennifer is currently involved in the community literacy solution design team of Evanston Cradle to Career.
A native Evanstonian, Jennifer grew up and raised a family in south Evanston. She spent her professional life as an early childhood educator. Working as a classroom teacher in both Chicago Public and in Evanston/Skokie School District 65, Jennifer has focused on connecting communities through active listening and relationship building. Jennifer is bilingual in Spanish. She helped to start the District's Two Way Immersion program (TWI), now in its sixteenth year. Jennifer is a 'connector' who believes in listening to good ideas, maintaining a sense of humor and emphasizing the positive.
Vice President of Development
Rebecca Parmet is in her fifth year with the Evanston Community Foundation. As the current Vice President of Development and former Donor Relationship Manager, she manages all planned giving, grantmaking partner fundraising, annual development, and endowment fund appeals.
Previously serving in Planned Giving at The Rotary Foundation, she ensured all legacy gifts were stewarded with intention and care. Prior to this role, Parmet spent four years at PS It's Social (Curt’s Café) in several capacities, including the General Manager for the Women’s Empowerment Program and the Development Associate for all fundraising. She also wrote the Workforce and Life Skills training curriculum focused on student leadership.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in Family Community Services from Michigan State University and a master’s degree in Public Administration from Roosevelt University. She was also a board member of Caring Outreach by Parents in Evanston and served as a tutor for Books and Breakfast at Kingsley Elementary School. She loves her little dog, Pepper.
Andrea has been with ECF since 2013, acting as the incredibly reliable right hand support for ECF’s finance work. Andrea’s deep knowledge of accounting and bookkeeping along with the Foundation’s operations has enabled. She had a demonstrated history of working in the financial services industry and is skilled in accounting, nonprofit operations, and tax-deductible giving practices. When she’s not busy balancing our books, you can catch Andrea keeping up with her 19 year-old son or riding her bike along the many beautiful miles of Chicago’s lakefront.
Nadia joined the Evanston Community Foundation as Database Associate in November 2022. Previously, Nadia oversaw the database at Warehouse Workers for Justice and grew to enjoy the challenge of collecting and using data for more equitable, community-centric fundraising. Passionate about wealth redistribution and shifting systems of power, Nadia got her start in fundraising as an organizer with a volunteer-run mutual aid funding collective in 2020. She's eager to play a part in supporting the community justice initiatives Evanston residents bring to ECF.
Outside of work, Nadia teaches swim lessons and spends as much time as she can in the lake (weather permitting). She loves her sewing machine, doodling, and curling up with her feline roommate, Crispy Lou.
Jenny Valdes Del Valle
Program Officer, E-Town
Jenny joined ECF in July 2021. As Program Officer, Jenny plays a vital role in advancing ECF’s mission through community programs, community relationship building and grants. She helps build, coordinate and steward the Foundation’s grantmaking portfolio. Additionally, she serves as ECF’ liaison to the Latinx community in Evanston
She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations and French, with a minor in Latin American Studies from Lake Forest College. Jenny’s passion for social justice and community engagement has been nurtured by her professional experience. In 2019 she served as a translator and interpreter for Undocumented communities at Rosalind Franklin University Clinics. Moreover, she collaborated with the Monteverde Institute, carrying out research on Child malnutrition in Costa Rica. Before graduating college, she served as the Economic Affairs Intern at the Quebec Government Office in Chicago. Jenny is committed to bring a multicultural, multifaceted scope to ECF’s work. She fluently speaks Spanish, English and French.
Outside of work, Jenny enjoys being around nature, and exploring Chicago’s dining scene. Her favorite hobbies are being a plant mom, and going to as many concerts as possible
Director of Operations
Julie has a broad range of responsibilities including managing and maintaining all the different office technologies. Julie has a long background in administrative support services.
Prior to joining ECF, she spent seven years at the Pritzker Group in a wide range of administrative roles, including reception and executive administrative assistance, database management and maintenance, accounting and office services. Julie is bilingual in English and Spanish. She enjoys jogging by the lake, cooking y le gusta bailar.