Executive Staff Founder & CEO Jacob Martinez He/Him 831-722-6378 ext. 832 firstname.lastname@example.org READ BIO × President Jacob Martinez email@example.com 831-722-6378 ext. 832 In 2014, Jacob founded Digital NEST—a technology workforce development hub providing Latino youth living in under-resourced rural communities with high-demand technology skills, mentoring and hands-on experience so they can secure well-paying jobs. Jacob conceived the NEST after witnessing a young college student out in the cold night doing homework on her laptop because she didn’t have internet access at home. That moment sparked Jacob’s idea to give the brilliant young minds in his community a better chance at achieving big dreams.Over the course of his career, Jacob has provided guidance and mentorship to youth to pursue STEM careers. Before starting Digital NEST, Jacob spent nearly 10 years running a successful program funded by the National Science Foundation, with a focus on encouraging underrepresented Latina girls in the Pajaro Valley Unified School District to study computer science. The program was instituted in every school throughout the district and eventually expanded to include boys.Jacob currently sits on the Board of Directors for Santa Cruz Works, and is on the advisory board of the Association of Science and Technology Centers, United Way Monterey County and Silicon Valley Leadership Group Foundation. In 2020, Jacob received The James Irvine Foundation “Leadership Award.” In 2018 he was given the Monterey Bay Economic Partnership Community Impact award and the Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation selected him as an “Entrepreneur Fellow.” He spoke at the first White House Tech Meetup in 2015 and TechCrunch named him one of 2014’s “Top 10 Men in the Country Supporting Women in Technology.”Jacob understands that businesses improve their ability to innovate when they hire the creative, brilliant young minds living in their own backyards. Local youth solve community challenges, put resources back into the community, and build economic prosperity where they live. By training youth in the technology and soft skills businesses demand, Digital NEST is empowering them to chart their future careers. He plans to open a Digital NEST in all overlooked communities across California and prepare youth to transform them into thriving economic centers.When Jacob is not making sure youth in rural communities are ready for big careers, he spends time with his wife and three kids, cultivates his home garden, and prior to the pandemic, he traveled. He is based in Watsonville. Click here Chief operating officer Dr. Antonia O. Franco She/Her 831-722-6378 ext. 843 firstname.lastname@example.org READ BIO × Home About Careers Impact Programs Contact Menu Home About Careers Impact Programs Contact Donate Interim Chief Finance Officer Ann Thompson She/Her/Hers 831-722-6378 email@example.com READ BIO × Interim Chief Finance Officer Ann Thompson firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 841 Ann is with the NEST on loan from Bank of America where she is a Senior Executive. Ann holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from UCLA. She joined Bank of America in 2006 and has 32 years of experience in retail banking, consumer lending, structured high-net-worth client lending and asset-based commercial lending at major financial institutions. Ann serves on the Board of Trustees of the Oakland Museum of California and previously served on the Board of Trustees for Habitat for Humanity, Greater Bay Area. She was named one of the “Bay Area’s Most Influential Women in Business” by the San Francisco Business Times in 2016 and was added to their “Forever Influential” list in 2017. Ann lives in the East Bay with her husband of 34 years and has two grown sons. Stuart is a comedian and comedy writer in Los Angeles and Drummond is a banker in Seattle. Ann and Mark also have a perfectly behaved French Bulldog, Hazel. Interim Chief Program Office, Director of Program Curriculum Yazmin Herrera She/Her/Ella 831-722-6378 ext. 841 email@example.com READ BIO × Interim Chief Program OfficeDirector of Program Curriculum Yazmin Herrera firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378, ext. 849 Yazmin Herrera has 10 years of collective experience in the nonprofit education sector. Her career started as a project assistant at American Institutes for Research and she went on to co-found Digital NEST in 2014. She graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 2012 with a degree in Anthropology and Sociology. Her interests and skills vary widely. In summary, she loves to learn new things and teach others what she knows. She firmly believes that the best way to learn is by doing and it’s reflected in her work as an instructor, mentor, supervisor, project manager and program designer. When not working, you can catch her in backpacking, hiking, trying new food, researching a new topic, and looking for the next new experience. Development & Grants Development director E Griffin-Ortiz He/Him 831-722-6378, ext. 848 email@example.com READ BIO × Development Director E Griffin-Ortiz firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378, ext. 848 Yazmin Herrera has 10 years of collective experience in the nonprofit education sector. Her career started as a project assistant at American Institutes for Research and she went on to co-found Digital NEST in 2014. She graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 2012 with a degree in Anthropology and Sociology. Her interests and skills vary widely. In summary, she loves to learn new things and teach others what she knows. She firmly believes that the best way to learn is by doing and it’s reflected in her work as an instructor, mentor, supervisor, project manager and program designer. When not working, you can catch her in backpacking, hiking, trying new food, researching a new topic, and looking for the next new experience. Director of operations Joe Gonzales He/Him 831-722-6378, ext. 857 email@example.com READ BIO × Director of Operations Joe Gonzales firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378, ext. 857 As Digital NEST’s Director of Program Operations, Joe does more than set program sites up for success. With more than 15 years in the Nonprofit sector, he’s obsessed with innovating new ways of reaching under-served youth and creating transformational change within our communities. He also has the good fortune to work with a talented team who share his vision, and make the Digital NEST a great place for youth to create, grow, and inspire each other while working side by side! Apart from this, Joe supports org wide initiatives relating to leadership and financial development, fiscal management, and the professional growth of his team. Regardless of which role Joe is playing, his goal is simple—to empower youth, and provide all of the resources they need to succeed; to elevate themselves, their family and their communities.Throughout his career, Joe has worked with notable organizations such as the Y and the Boys & Girls Club—focusing on youth development, health & wellness, and community recreation.The 3 things that inspire Joe:His beautiful wife Dina and their 2 boys Jeter & Jordan Opportunity to Serve Community The Potential of All People Finance & Human Resources Controller Jennifer Rego She/Her 831-722-6378, ext. 833 email@example.com READ BIO × Controller Jennifer Rego firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378, ext. 833 Jennifer is the Controller at Digital NEST responsible for all financial functions including accounting, reporting, payroll, purchasing, budgeting, and auditing. Jennifer has been with Digital NEST for 5 years, starting as a bookkeeper. She has worked for a total of 11 years of nonprofit accounting and 14 years in for-profit accounting during her career. Jennifer is currently working toward her Bachelor’s Degree in Business with a specialization in Accounting which she will complete over the next two years. Jennifer has a daughter in high school and a grown son. Her leisure time is spent with her kids. She has lived in Watsonville for her entire life. Grants Manager Tara Thomas She/They 831-722-6378 email@example.com READ BIO × Grants Manager Tara Thomas firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 As Digital NEST’s grants manager, Tara Thomas manages corporate, government, and regional foundation grants. They have ten years of experience working in development, communications, and programs for local nonprofits and thirteen years of experience working in higher education.Tara is dedicated to building bridges between local education and workforce development institutions to help empower underserved youth to achieve their educational and career goals. Tara received their Ph.D. and M.A. in Literature from UC Santa Cruz and their B.A. in English Education and Spanish from Southern Oregon University. When Tara’s not fundraising for the NEST, they’re gardening, hiking, traveling, helping organize humanities programming in the local community, and teaching racial justice courses at UC Santa Cruz. Senior Human Resources Manager Ximena Ireta-Lopez She/Her/Hers 831-722-6378, ext. 846 email@example.com READ BIO × Senior Human Resources Manager Ximena Ireta-Lopez firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 846 Ximena is a Watsonville native, the eldest of three sisters, and daughter of farm worker, immigrant parents. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology at UCSC where she first learned about Digital NEST. Quickly after graduating, she began her AmeriCorps Fellowship at Digital NEST. Soon after completing her fellowship, she began her full-time career at Digital NEST. Ximena’s career trajectory at Digital NEST has offered her experience in youth engagement, facility operations, and currently Human Resources. Ximena loves horror movies, true crime documentaries, and is obsessed with the Real Housewives franchise. Do not bother inviting her on a hike, to the beach, or camping (unless its glam-ping). Do invite her for a drink, any occasion where there will be food, and funny people! Senior Development Manager Open! VIEW OPEN POSITIONS Administrative Assistant, CEO & CPO Diana Hernandez She/Her/Hers 831-722-6378, ext. 830 email@example.com READ BIO × Administrative Assistant, CEO & CPO Diana Hernandez firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 830 Diana was born in Guanajuato, Mexico and her family immigrated to Santa Cruz, CA shortly after. She spent the first 9 years of her life there before moving to Watsonville, CA where she has resided ever since. Diana attended Cabrillo College and graduated in 2022, she is currently attending CSUMB working towards her B.S. in Collaborative Health & Human Services, with a concentration on Social Work and Public Health. She has worked at Digital NEST since 2018 but her journey here began in 2016 as a Connect Crew volunteer. Diana is inspired by the impact that Digital NEST has on members’ lives and seeing them grow within the NEST just as she did. When Diana is not at work or in school, you can find her spending time with her friends, at the beach, or at home with her 2 dogs and cat. She loves exploring creative outlets such as painting, film photography, and cross-stitching. A fun fact about Diana is that she is a danzante for Ixtatutli/White Hawk Indian Council. Diana spends her time at Digital NEST supporting our Founder and CEO, as well as the CPO and the Programs team with their admin-related tasks and projects! Administrative assistant, development Open! VIEW OPEN POSITIONS Bookkeeper Adreana Cornejo She/Her/Hers 831-722-6378 email@example.com READ BIO × Bookkeeper Adreana Cornejo firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 Adreana Cornejo was born and raised in Watsonville, CA from an immigrant farm-working family. From a young age she worked alongside her family in the Salinas strawberry fields and used that experience to motivate her to obtain higher education. Adreana has remained a local of the tri-county area, attending Watsonville High School, obtaining a Bachelors in Science and MBA from CSU Monterey Bay. Adreana has over 14 years’ experience as a Quality Improvement professional in the healthcare field and over 20 years’ experience as a Bookkeeper specifically for the nonprofit sector. As of early 2020, Adreana began working with the local nonprofits Pajaro Valley Loaves and Fishes as well as the Watsonville Film Festival as a Bookkeeper and in early 2021 also became a proud member of the DigitalNEST family in the same capacity. To be part of incredible local organizations, that help the community and more specifically the underserved, is the greatest motivation for Adreana. Adreana loves spending time with her two beautiful daughters and loving husband. Employer Partnerships Manager Sandra Pineda She/Her/Ella 831-722-6378, ext. 805 email@example.com READ BIO × Employer Partnerships Manager Sandra Pineda firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 805 Sandra Pineda was born in Glendale, LA, and raised in the Central Valley in Tulare, CA. She moved to the central coast to attend University of California, Santa Cruz. She graduated in 2017 with a B.A. in Sociology and a concentration in Global Information and Social Enterprise Studies. Upon graduating, Sandra discovered Digital NEST and the welcoming community of Watsonville. She joined the team as a Volunteer Program Coordinator for a year. Following that, she provided Administrative Support over 3 years to CEO Jacob Martinez and several other directors. She transitioned into the Employer Partnerships Manager role in 2022 where she aims to connect our members to internship and entry-level career opportunities, and manages our career development conference, NEST Flight! What inspires Sandra about working at the NEST is seeing talented and shy youth blossom into mindful, confident, and driven talented young professionals. Watsonville Programs Associate Site Manager Monica Villanueva She/Her 831-722-6378, ext. 804 email@example.com READ BIO × Associate Site Manager Monica Villanueva firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 804 Monica Villanueva-Espinoza has over 6 years of operations management and hospitality. She is born and raised in Watsonville, CA and has dedicated her career to develop her community. Being at the Digital NEST she is inspired to provide the resources to assist all the youth that come through the NEST doors as she was once given. She enjoys being able to connect youth to options and opportunities so that they don’t feel limited. While she is not at the NEST, she enjoys different types of crafts, concerts, and spending time with her loved ones and pup Mirko. Front Desk Staff Open! VIEW OPEN POSITIONS DA+T Program Manager Genevieve Rico She/Her 831-722-6378, ext. 840 email@example.com READ BIO × DA+T Program Manager Genevieve Rico firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 840 Genevieve Rico received a B.A. in Cinematic Arts and Tech from California State University Monterey Bay in 2014 and has been running her own Wedding Photography business for well over 7 years. With her experience in filmmaking, Genevieve has been able to share her knowledge and expertise within the Digital Arts and Technology program with the youth members here at the Digital NEST. Community outreach, representation and connection have been the main goals rooted in her own personal and professional journey. She believes in uplifting other small business creatives and amplifying the voices of the youth through different art mediums, including filmmaking. Genevieve will always lend a helping hand to those around her. People projects & Leadership Manager Xitlali Cabadas She/Her/Ella 831-722-6378, ext. 803 email@example.com READ BIO × People Projects and Leadership Manager Xitlali Cabadas firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 803 Xitlali Cabadas is a Watsonville native, and is passionate about doing work that has a positive impact in her community. She is passionate about the work she does as she sees herself in the youth she works with every day. Growing up it was a struggle to figure out what she was passionate about, and being able to be a part of a young person’s career journeys brings her a lot of joy. As the People, Project’s and Leadership program manager, she is able to take her experience in community leadership, and project management to create curriculum that is relatable and engaging four our youth. In her free time she enjoys live music, collecting vinyl records, and playing video games. WI+T Manager Mayra Ochoa She/Her 831-722-6378, ext. 847 email@example.com READ BIO × WI+T Manager Mayra Ochoa firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 803 Mayra Ochoa was born in Salinas and raised in the small city of Zamora, Michoacán. She brings her passion for technology and education to Digital Nest. She fell in love with Computer Science Education when she worked in CoderDojo at Hartnell College. Giving back to the community has been the root of her personal and professional journey. When not at work, Mayra loves exploring the Monterey Peninsula with her family and friends. She also enjoys cooking, coding, playing volleyball and listening to audiobooks. PP+L Specialist Valentina Velasquez She/Her 831-722-6378, ext. 829 email@example.com READ BIO × PP+L Specialist Valentina Velasquez firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 829 Valentina Velasquez received a Bachelor of Arts in Ethnic Studies and Spanish at St. Mary’s College of California. After graduation, Valentina returned to her hometown of Watsonville, and joined the Digital NEST looking for a way to reconnect with her community at the height of the pandemic. She first began as an AmeriCorps Fellow at the NEST and later became a PP+L specialist. Valentina enjoys working in the PP+L pathway because she gets to work directly with members and help their ideas become a reality! While not working Valentina enjoys spending time with her family, reading books and graphic novels, and creating stickers. Salinas Programs W+IT Career Specialist Jennifer Lopez She/Her 831-722-6378, ext. 828 email@example.com READ BIO × W+IT Career Specialist Jennifer Lopez firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 828 Jennifer Lopez was born on the other side of the U.S. in a state called New Jersey and moved to California when she was 4 years old. She was part of the CSin3 program earning her bachelor’s degree in Computer Science within 3 years in May 2021. Jennifer has experience creating websites. Throughout her years of college, she spent helping her current peers and incoming cohort members by being a TA. When the opportunity arose to be a volunteer at Digital NEST during her last year of college, she took it right away. While volunteering, she found great satisfaction in seeing members grow and the community within the NEST.During the weekends, Jennifer enjoys crocheting plushies, browsing youtube and going to Round 1. She recently got a cat who has given her the worst of allergies.Jennifer creates the curriculum for the Web + Information Technology department to teach workshops by season. She also works together with Salinas Union High School District (SUHSD) teachers to provide youth with workforce training. Education Specialist, DA+T Graphic Design Mayra Ruiz-Valtierra She/Her/Hers 831-722-6378, ext. 842 email@example.com READ BIO × Education Specialist, DA+T Graphic Design Mayra Ruiz-Valtierra firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 42 Mayra was born in Watsonville California. She went to school at Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology where she studied graphic design. Mayra has been a graphic designer for 10 plus years. She loves teaching the youth all about graphic design and how it can impact them and their community. She loves to paint and draw and spend time with her family. Fun fact about Mayra is that she almost pursued a career as a opera singer but decided to stick to her original passion of visual arts. It was this passion of visual arts that led her to a career in graphic design. Mayra hopes to help the youth to the same opportunity here at the NEST and help them find creative paying careers. Member specialist Open! VIEW OPEN POSITIONS Front desk Staff, Salinas Center Foram Shah 831-722-6378 email@example.com READ BIO × Front Desk Staff, Salinas Center Foram Shah firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 Foram Shah has grown up in Salinas and is a fierce advocate for her community. She has been involved in Salinas for many years and volunteered though the Salinas Public Library, local colleges/elementary schools and more. After joining Digital NEST in 2021 she became a member and then a Member Advocate. The NEST’s mission of providing youth with hands on guidance and access to opportunities for their future inspires her. As a Member Advocate, she thoroughly enjoys the opportunity to connect with other youth, guide them to research their goals to feel confident for their future. To achieve her own future educational goals, she is currently pursing her Associates and Bachelors Degree in Computer Science and looks forward to continuing her education with a Master’s Degree in the future. Her aim is to help broaden the scope of Computer Science, and provide representation with platforms for minority voices to leave their impact on the subject. Brunch is her favorite meal and in her spare time she enjoys reading, trying out new restaurants, spending time with her friends and family, traveling, and going to the beach. bizzNEST Senior Manager, bizzNESTSenior Site Manager, Digital NEST Salinas Omar Perez he/Him 831-722-6378, ext. 850 email@example.com READ BIO × Senior Manager, bizzNEST | Senior Site Manager, Digital NEST Salinas Omar Perez firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 850 Omar is a Salinas native with a passion for economic justice, racial equity, and community building. He has 7 years of project management and community relations experience as a political organizer in Monterey County helping to elect local leadership. Omar currently serves on the Alisal Vibrancy Plan Implementation Committee and the City of Salinas General Plan Steering Committee. As the Senior Manager of bizzNEST, Omar is inspired by the opportunity to bring economic mobility to young people of color through the internship and as the Senior Site Manager for Digital NEST Salinas, Omar enjoys creating a welcoming and inclusive space for youth to gain skills to tackle their career journeys with confidence. Omar Received his B.A. in Psychology from UC Santa Cruz and his M.Sc. in Group Processes and Intergroup Relations from the University of Kent, Canterbury, United Kingdom. In his free time, Omar loves practicing family recipes, spending time in his garden, traveling, and exploring nature. Design Manager Michael Wachs He/Him 831-722-6378 email@example.com READ BIO × Home About Careers Impact Programs Contact Menu Home About Careers Impact Programs Contact Donate Web & Graphic Design Specialist Hassyel Rangel She/Her/Ella 831-722-6378, ext. 856 firstname.lastname@example.org READ BIO × Web & Graphic Design Specialist Hassyel Rangel email@example.com 831-722-6378 ext. 856 Hassyel was born and raised in Watsonville, CA. She attended Pajaro Valley High School and then went on to San Jose State University to earn a degree in Design Studies. She has worked at the Digital NEST since the Summer of 2021 as the Web and Graphic Design Specialist. Hassyel enjoys hanging out with her friends, hiking with her dog, and watching movies. She is inspired by the youth she works with every day and is driven by their talent and motivation to follow their dreams. A fun fact about her is that she used to catch lizards when she was little and loves reptiles to this day! Web Development Specialist Gilbert Haro He/Him 831-722-6378 firstname.lastname@example.org READ BIO × Home About Careers Impact Programs Contact Menu Home About Careers Impact Programs Contact Donate Client Specialist Cosme Lobato-Dondiego He/Him/El 831-722-6378, ext. 866 email@example.com READ BIO × Client Specialist Cosme Lobato-Dondiego firstname.lastname@example.org 831-722-6378 ext. 866 Cosme Lobato-Dondiego has years of customer service under his belt. Was working in community banking for the past 5 years where his love of helping his community grew. This is his first job in non-profit work, he’s a huge fan of the work DigitalNEST does and what the organization stands for. He wanted to work for a company that is representative of his community, and that values the potential of everyone and that creates an environment where everyone feels accepted.