Parents Education Network

Board of Directors

Dewey Rosetti, Founder

Ms. Rosetti resides in San Francisco with her husband Bill, and two daughters who both have learning disabilities and ADHD. She has been a tireless advocate for her daughters and others with learning and attention difficulties for over twenty years.

In 2003 Ms. Rosetti founded Parents Education Network.  She has been a board member for the last ten years.  Ms. Rosetti is the co-founder and board chair of Project Variability.  She is a past Trustee of the Charles Armstrong School, the founder of the Parent Support Group at Katherine Delmar Burkes School, and a past board member of Burkes School. She is also past President of the Little Sisters of the Poor Auxiliary.

Ms. Rosetti retired from Levi Strauss as Merchandise Manager responsible for 125 million dollar business. Prior to that, she was a Research Analyst/Librarian at McKinsey & Co.

Ms. Rosetti received her M.B.A. from University of California at Berkeley in 1976, and her B.A. from the University of Florida in 1967.

In 2011 Ms. Rosetti received the Heroes and Hearts Award sponsored by San Francisco General Hospital for her work with PEN.

Ellice Sperber, Chair

Ms. Sperber resides in San Francisco with her partner, Dale Van Fossan, and her two daughters who both have learning disabilities. Ms. Sperber has been involved with PEN from its earliest years.

Ms. Sperber is a retired American Sign Language Interpreter for the Deaf and the Deaf-Blind with more than thirty-five years of dedicated work in the disabilities and disability rights community. She was the Artistic Director of The LA Sign Company, a theatre company that produced plays blending Deaf and Hearing actors. She worked at the San Francisco Lighthouse for the Blind as a Deaf-Blind Consultant. Ms. Sperber was also a dancer and the Singing Director with Zadruga Folk Ensemble.

Ms. Sperber was Chair of the Parent Group on Learning Differences at San Francisco Day School, is a former Trustee of Gateway Public Schools and Director for Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic, N. CA, and has chaired fund-raising activities for weSpark Cancer Support Center's Celebrity Golf Tournaments, a non-profit founded by her sister. Ms Sperber serves on the Advisory Board of Northern California Branch, International Dyslexia Association.

Ms. Sperber graduated with a degree in Linguistics from California State University, Northridge.

Sandy Otellini, Treasurer

Ms. Otellini resides in San Francisco with her husband, Paul, and daughter who is dyslexic. She retired from Intel Corporation in 1995 where she held several legal and management positions. Prior to joining Intel, Ms. Otellini was an associate with the legal firm Paul, Hastings, Janofsky and Walker where she represented Fortune 500 companies in all aspects of employment law.

Currently Ms. Otellini is co-founder of the Parents Education Network. She is Vice Chair and Director of the Exploratorium, and a Board member of the de Saisat Museum at Santa Clara University. Ms. Otellini served on the Steering Committee of the Hearts in San Francisco Project, a project benefiting the San Francisco General Hospital Foundation

Martha Gregg, Secretary

Ms. Gregg lives in San Francisco with her husband, Jim, and is the mother of two dyslexic daughters who attend an independent school. She is an Interior Designer with clients throughout the Bay Area. Ms. Gregg has also been a film editor and florist. She currently is a Board member of the Blauvelt-Demerest Foundation which supports wildlife conservation and education.

Debra Johnson

For twenty-five years, Debra Johnson worked in the financial services, hospitality and healthcare industries with a focus on marketing, advertising and communications.  During the course of her career Debra particularly enjoyed coordinating large events, such as a film series and themed weekends targeted to a variety of affinity groups. She was instrumental in the development of the branding and collateral materials for her family’s winery, Astrale e Terra, which is located in the Napa Valley.  She has also served on the boards of Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization and UNICEF’s Midwest Chapter.  She currently resides in northern California with her husband and two children.

Karl Shaikh

Karl Shaikh has over fifteen years of experience in researching, developing, critiquing and/or implementing strategy for a range of organizations, including major European and international firms, as well as numerous small businesses and nonprofits.

Karl has an MBA and a Masters in Finance from London Business School, with a focus on Strategy, Corporate Finance, Entrepreneurship and Venture Capital. Since arriving in San Francisco in Oct '09 from London, Karl has been managing his business in the UK remotely. He is also enjoying serving as a stay-at-home dad to his 30-month-old boy named Zac, and the recent addition of 9-month-old Zara.

In his spare time, Karl teaches a Strategy course and an Entrepreneurship course to an MBA class at USF. He has also delivered three service grants to nonprofits in San Francisco on behalf of the Taproot Foundation. It was while delivering a Taproot service grant to PEN that he first encountered the organization and was eventually invited to join the board.

Karl is passionate about PEN's mission because he believes that the best way to make a difference to people's lives is by helping them learn - and that helping people learn how to learn, to suit their own learning style, is perhaps the greatest gift.

Brian Thomas

Brian Thomas is the Associate Head of School at The Bentley School in the East Bay, overseeing the Upper School Campus since August of 2008. Brian was the Head at the Presidio Hill School in San Francisco, Executive Director and High School Developer/High School Principal at the Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy (Agassi Prep) in Las Vegas, Nevada, and Assistant Head of the Upper School at Catlin Gabel School in Portland, Oregon. Brian first came to the San Francisco Bay Area to become the English Department chair at Marin Academy. He is a graduate of Yale and received a Master's Degree in Education from Portland State University.  He also serves on the Boards of the Bay School of San Francisco and the Seven Hills School in Walnut Creek. He is a former Trustee at the Howard Gardner School in Vancouver, WA.

He grew up on Chicago's far south side in the City of Harvey and the Village of Robbins. Brian frequently writes and speaks about educational innovation, changing school culture, and creating inclusive, respectful environments in schools. Before working in the education space, Brian was an actor, working off-Broadway and in Los Angeles.  He has worked for Bill Cosby, Stedman Graham, the Negro Ensemble Company, and the Hartford Stage Company.  In 1988, he received an Emmy Award for his work as an actor for the docudrama, Fastbreak to Glory: The Du Sable Panthers Story. Over the years, Brian has been an ardent advocate for the Parent Education Network, advising the SAFE students since the groups inception. Brian is married to Jaime Thomas and they have two children, Eian and Olivia.

Julie Traun

Ms. Traun resides in San Francisco with her husband Tony Tamburello, and daughter who is dyslexic. She has been active in starting a parent support group at Presidio Hill School.

Ms. Traun has been an attorney in private practice since 1979. Currently she is a sole practitioner and employed part time by the Bar Association of San Francisco as an administrator in the Indigent Defense Program. Ms. Traun has taught as an adjunct professor of law at Golden Gate University Law School and USF Law School, and New College of California School of Law. Ms. Traun is a long time member of the Conflicts Committee of the Bar Association of San Francisco, the National Lawyers' Guild, Women Defenders, California Attorneys for Criminal Justice and the California Criminal Trial Lawyers' Association. She has been honored by the Bar Association of San Francisco and Women Defenders as an "Outstanding Criminal Defense Attorney."

Ms. Traun received her law degree at the New College School of Law, and B.A. from the University of Minnesota.

Carol Welsh Gray

Carol Welsh Gray is a social sector entrepreneur with thirty years experience designing and scaling social innovations that improve conditions for children, youth and families. She founded award-winning initiatives and nonprofits that include Daybreak Shelter for Homeless Youth, Center for Venture Philanthropy, and Raising A Reader, an early literacy program that she expanded to 33 states.

As bookends to these achievements, Carol pioneered venture philanthropy, venture capital practice applied to the achievement of social goals, at Joint Venture Silicon Valley's school reform initiative. She was most recently the Executive Director of Thrive Foundation for Youth, where she translated new research on youth purpose into adult techniques, youth curriculum, and assessments adopted by national nonprofits.

Carol is a graduate of Stanford University where she holds a B.S. in Human Biology and a M.S. in Physical Therapy, with an emphasis on child development. She currently works as an independent consultant, supporting nonprofits in their reach for audacious goals.

At PEN, Carol integrates her career experience with her personal interest in learning differences. Three of Carol's four children had significant dyslexia and attention differences and with significant support, they have become thriving, highly literate young adults. Through PEN, Carol seeks a head start to support differences that may likely pop-up in her brood of toddling grandchildren.


Parents Education Network (PEN), 6050 Geary Blvd., Ste. 101A, San Francisco, CA 94121    Phone: (415) 751-2237

PEN is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, federal tax ID# 43-2008436.

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