Heather Heimerl Brunold, M.Ed., Ed.D.
President & CEO
Heather Heimerl Brunold has been a thought leader in education, specializing in adolescent development and family/school dynamics for more than two decades. After completing her doctorate in education from the University of Southern California, Heather became passionate about utilizing her expertise outside the four walls of a classroom, and instead on behalf of the greater community. Seeing an opportunity to use the TED brand in support of the local good, Heather acquired the TEDxPasadena and TEDxPasadenaWomen licenses and has focused the brands as vehicles to positively influence our community’s approach to learning. This ultimately led her to establish Words2Action, a nonprofit organization that serves as the fiscal agent for our local TEDx efforts, but also whose mission is to transform the words we speak into tangible action by providing sponsorships for teens who identify female ages 13-18. Heather is by her nature a helper, healer and teacher. Her passion for learning and her love of relationship building are the reasons she enjoys serving our community.
Board Chair | Golden Peak Partners, LLC
In addition to owning and operating her real estate investment firm, Carrie is active in the Pasadena community, serving various organizations for nearly 20 years. Her early career began in event planning in Washington, DC. The skills learned in that area have been paramount to her local charity work. Over the last 20 years, she served in the Pasadena Children’s Guild, Circle of Friends (as President), Urban Compass Guild (as a founding member), and Huntington Hospital (as a volunteer in the Emergency Department). Carrie is also an active board member for both Kidspace Children’s Museum and Young & Healthy. She also dedicates time to her alma mater, Georgetown University as an alumni interviewer and class reunion coordinator. Carrie is the proud wife of Scott Walker and mother of three children. When not volunteering or running her company, Carrie enjoys spending time with her husband of 18 years, their children, and their extended family and friends. She is very excited to be a part of the Words2Action team after her years with TEDxPasadenaWomen.
Shelley Arakawa is an advocate and change agent with a passion for strengthening access and excellence in education. As an executive search consultant with Witt/Kieffer, she brings a true appreciation for the role that leaders play in transforming institutions and contributing to the larger society, and provides expert counsel and guidance on searches ranging from presidents and provosts to vice presidents and deans. Previously, Shelley served as the Director of Regional and Campaign Giving for Punahou School, one of the largest single-campus K-12 independent schools in the United States. In this role, she helped build the infrastructure for regional alumni involvement, and increased financial support for key initiatives. Prior to this, Shelley held senior roles with the College Board, leading the higher education team in forging innovative and collaborative partnerships with about 350 colleges and universities. Among her many accomplishments with the College Board, Shelley launched the organization’s first Native American Student Advocacy Initiative and directed the Summer Institute on College Admissions and School Relations and the Enrollment Leadership Academy. Shelley has additional non-profit experience with the Foundation for a College Education and held admission roles with Stanford University and Dartmouth College. Shelley received a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College and a JD from the University of California Hastings College of the Law.
Rocelyn is a licensed Life & Health Insurance Agent and has worked in the medical field as an Administrator and a Medical Practice consultant. Rocelyn has volunteered with TEDxPasadena since 2015 and is dedicated to making a difference within the Pasadena community. Rocelyn brings her enthusiasm and excitement to the Board of Words2Action and is looking forward to her continued service and helping those with muted voices be heard!
Bernadette Capulong is the CEO & Founder of BC Design Haus, a WBENC and small business-certified, full-service design and branding agency in the Los Angeles area. They drive results by combining creativity and marketing data to bring smart branding solutions to customers.
Born in the Philippines, Bernadette’s parents immigrated to Portland, Oregon, when she was a child. She graduated high school with honors and attended California State University Long Beach, earning her a Bachelor of Art in Graphic Design.
After her education, it wasn’t long before she soared quickly up the ranks at corporations like IBM, Nestlé, Procter & Gamble, and Mattel. She spearheaded global billion-dollar brands like Barbie, Crunch, and Minecraft, with innovations and sales records through her creative efforts.
In 2009, she founded BC Design Haus at the cusp of the recession. Bernadette’s vision was simple: high-quality work, in half the time then the competition, adding greater value while building long-term relationships.
Although she is meant to be an entrepreneur, she is also meant to be a mother, and a single one at that. Bernadette adopted her son in 2015, and found that motherhood sparked in her a desire to be an even more fearless, inspiring and determined leader than ever before.
Olivia Hudnut is a licensed attorney in California clerking in the Los Angeles County Superior Court. She also serves as the vice co-chair on the American Constitution Society’s Los Angeles Lawyer Chapter. Olivia began advocating for those with muted voices as a member of the University of Southern California Sexual Assault Task Force and Violence Outreach Intervention and Community Empowerment (V.O.I.C.E.) representative. She has used her legal skills to speak on behalf of and empower disenfranchised, marginalized members of our community as a student lawyer with the Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County’s Workers’ Rights and Reentry Clinics, University of Southern California International Human Rights Clinic, and as a legal fellow with the Federal Public Defender’s Office for the Central District of California. As a recent addition to the Board of Words2Action, she hopes to bring her legal experience to bear in bolstering the foundation of the organization and serve its mission to transform good intentions into positive change.
Linda Hunter is a creative collaborator and banking professional with over 25 years in the retail and private banking industries. Her commitment to exceptional client experience, employee engagement, operational and brand integrity have been the bedrock of her career successes. Throughout her career, she has been dedicated to giving back to the communities in which she’s served which allowed her to launch and participate in multiple volunteer opportunities including with Dress for Success, Team Impact, SCS Noonan Scholars and Junior Achievement. Linda has volunteered with TEDx Pasadena Since 2015.
Linda’s passion for dialog towards positive change and creating space for muted voices led her to the important mission of Words2Action.
Adrienne Hernandez is the CEO of FLAGSHIP Group, LLC, an agency that provides 24-hour residential supports for adults who live with developmental disabilities. With over 30 years of work experience with this population, Adrienne is a strong advocate of celebrating “Diversity-In-Ability” versus “Dis-ability.” As CEO, she enthusiastically focuses the mission of her agency on helping individuals live in their fullest potential in the context of full Community Membership.
Her vocational journey has provided her with some wonder-full opportunities to act as Advocate, Ally and Mentor for intergenerational and multicultural communities. She has experience with successfully pursuing grant opportunities, organizing community workshops and facilitating professional training curriculums, which have addressed issues such as, Economic Disparity, Domestic & Sexual Violence, Self-Advocacy and Healing through Art. Connected to her personal journey through life adversities, Adrienne pulls on her unique experiences to encourage others to intentionally use their stories and personal power of impact to create positive change in the lives of others. She focuses her life attitude around treating others from a place of Compassion, Mutual Respect and Celebration of the Human Spirit. These experiences have afforded her the development of a diverse “Tool Kit” of resources from which she is looking forward to contributing to the growth and vitality of Words2Actions’ mission to “..improve the world, one idea at a time.”
One of her favorite quotes, which she frequently uses to encapsulate her life purpose, is by author Emile Zola: “If you ask me what I came into this world to do, I will tell you: I came to LIVE OUT LOUD.”