Orange County Leadership
Orange County Chapter Staff
Executive DirectorAbout Michelle...
Michelle Popoff is Executive Director of the JDRF Orange County Chapter. In this role, Michelle works closely with our staff, Board of Directors, our strong volunteer base, and our type 1 diabetes (T1D) community. Michelle has been with JDRF Orange County since 2005, when she was brought on board to start the chapter’s outreach program. Since then, the program has grown extensively and provides many resources, events and connections for the T1D community, including the Bag of Hope, annual TypeOneNation Summit, T1D Care Kit, Walking the T1D Tightrope events, Research Updates, Youth Ambassador program and more. Michelle has served a variety of roles within the chapter, including Outreach Manager, Senior Development Manager, Outreach Captain for JDRF’s West Region and her current role as Executive Director.
Michelle was diagnosed with T1D at the age of 11 and is passionate about helping the T1D community and the JDRF mission to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications. She is the proud mom of her son, Jake, who was her inspiration to get involved with JDRF when he was born. Michelle graduated from UCLA with a B.A. in Communications and is a die-hard Bruin!
Development ManagerAbout Christine...
Christine joined JDRF in 2015 and is the lead staff member for the Orange County One Walk at Angel Stadium as well as our annual Fore the Kids Golf Classic. In addition to these main events, Christine also holds key roles in all other chapter events and working with our Donor Development Committee and the Board of Directors. She comes to us with a wealth of experience in Marketing, Customer Development & Management, Project Management and more.
Christine was diagnosed with T1D at the age of 6 and is committed to JDRF’s mission. She graduated from Chapman University with a BS in Business Administration and a dual emphasis in Marketing and Entrepreneurship. Besides helping us turn Type One into Type None, Christine’s passions are music and dancing.
Senior Development CoordinatorAbout Brittany...
Senior Development Coordinator
As the Senior Development Coordinator, Brittany serves a vital support role for the Orange County Chapter. Brittany is the lead staff member for volunteers at the One Walk as well as silent auction and raffle items for all special events (Gala, Dream Guild events, Fore the Kids Golf Classic).
Development ManagerAbout Jane...
Jane Gagne joined JDRF in August 2014 after relocating from New York City to the Orange County area. She previously worked at a family owned investment firm in downtown Manhattan. Her motivation for turning Type One into Type None is her husband Dave, who has successfully been living with T1D for over 35 years. She has a BS from Roger Williams University in Bristol, Rhode Island. Jane lives in Newport Beach with Dave and their and son.
Office ManagerAbout Aspen...
Aspen Groff joined JDRF in September 2017. She was diagnosed with T1D in 2012 and is thrilled to be part of an organization that gives back so much to the type 1 community. Originally from Colorado, Aspen graduated from the University of Colorado Boulder with a BA in Communication and moved to California in 2014 with her Fiance Chase and her two dogs, Abby and Mochi. Aspen’s hobbies includes doing anything with her dogs, spin class, exploring the outdoors, playing guitar and traveling. Although Type 1 Diabetes is a challenge to live with, she has never let it stop her from living her life to the fullest and has never given up hope that we will one day find a cure!
Board of Directors
Board Member Since 2012About Mary...
Board Member Since 2012
Mary Allen has lived in Newport Beach for over 40 years. Her involvement with JDRF began after her granddaughter was diagnosed in 2001. Mary Allen’s career was spent working in the field of Gerontology.
Board Member since 2000About Judy...
Board Member since 2000
Judy Brandt has been personally committed to finding a cure for type 1 diabetes (T1D) since her daughter Patty was diagnosed with T1D in 1994. Along with her husband Ray, she has been intimately involved with the JDRF Orange County Chapter for years, volunteering at a number of levels, including serving on committees such as the Gala and Walk. While employed at Allergan, she formed the Allergan Walk team which brought in new supporters and raised awareness as well as dollars. Judy chaired the Nominating Committee for 2 years and has chaired the Donor Relations Committee for the past two years, continuing in that role. She also served on the founding Board of the Dream Guild and continues to support that vitally important JDRF organization. Judy is also involved with several other Orange County non-profit organizations, both health related and focused on human services.
Professionally, Judy is an HR Consultant. Her business experience includes 25 plus years in Human Resources with small and large organizations, including 10 years with Allergan. During her last five years there, she headed the staffing department for the Irvine headquarters. Her consulting practice includes workshops on “Hiring for Emotional Intelligence”.
Board Member since 2005About Janet...
Board Member since 2005
Janet has over 36 years of experience in pharmaceutical research in bringing new products to market; most of these has been in ophthalmology with Allergan. Since leaving Allergan, she has been consulting for start-up companies and a non-profit to assist them with their drug development strategies.
Janet is in her 3rd year of a second term on the Orange County JDRF Board of Directors. Besides participating in Walk and the Gala, Janet is an active member of the Donor Development Committee.
Board Member since 2005About Kevin...
Board Member since 2005
Kevin has been with Canon Solutions America in its’ Long Beach, Ca. regional headquarters for fifteen years. Kevin has responsibility for the Western United States, including seventeen locations employing approximately 950 employees. Prior to joining Canon, he was Vice President of Human Resources for seven years with CalComp Technologies Inc., a subsidiary of Lockheed Martin which was a computer peripherals manufacturer in Anaheim, Ca. In these companies he was responsible for all employee capital issues including talent acquisition, compensation, employee benefits, and employee relations. Kevin has more than thirty years of human resources generalist and management experience. He also held the positions of Manager of Employee Relations and Supervisor of Technical Recruiting for a combined seven years at Continental Airlines.
Kevin was born in New York City, moved to Southern California with his family while in High School, and graduated with a Bachelors of Business Administration from Loyola Marymount University where he met Michele, his wife of 30 plus years. He is a member of the Society for Human Resources (SHRM). He is a Board Member for the Orange County chapter of Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) for 10 years, where he has served for 2 years as the Co-Chairperson of the Nominating Committee. His past volunteer activity for more than 20 years has included serving as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Continental Federal Credit Union, which had assets of approximately $190M, where he was also the Chairman of the Human Resources Committee. Living in Huntington Beach with his wife and three children, he has enjoyed coaching his children’s sports teams, which have included soccer and baseball. He also enjoys being a spectator for the other sports in which his children participate, including water polo and swimming.
Board Member since 2017About Ellen...
Board Member since 2017
Ellen Darling’s best friend is Tracey McCarter. Tracey’s youngest daughter, Charlize, was diagnosed with T1D 8 years ago. Ellen immediately became dedicated to finding a cure for this disease, and got involved with JDRF and devoted her time and resources to this organization. She has educated others about the disease and her friends/contacts have, in turn, donated money to the cause. Ellen and her family have devoted substantial time and efforts to the cause as well.
Ellen is a trial attorney at K&L Gates LLP. She primarily handles products liability cases for life science companies. She also handles class action cases involving various false advertising claims.
Board Member since 2011About Frank...
Board Member since 2011
Frank Deni has seen the difficulty of living with Type 1 diabetes. His wife, Elizabeth, has dealt with this condition for 56 years. Frank believes that the advances that have been made in research funded by JDRF have significantly improved Liz’s ability to manage her disease. For this reason, Frank has supported and volunteered for fund raisers over the past 25 years to ultimately find a cure. He has been an active member of the Orange County JDRF Board of Directors for 2 terms. Frank is a perpetual donor by making monthly contributions, being a Captain of a One Walk Team and serving on several JDRF committees.
Frank retired from The Boeing Company in 2010 as an Executive Director after 30 years of service. He previously worked for Chrysler Corporation in Detroit, Michigan as Superintendent with 10 years of service. Frank has taught college level courses, is an executive mentor for the UCI MBA program and serves on the Board for his HOA. He has been married to Elizabeth for 47 years and has one child, Kari Kohl and two grandchildren, Ashley and Ryan. Frank and Liz reside in Lake Forest.
Board Member since 2005About Cindy...
Board Member since 2005
Cindy has been involved with JDRF with her husband Jeff and family since their youngest daughter Rachel was diagnosed with T1D at age 4. Cindys involvement with JDRF began in 2003 with a family team for JDRF’s One Walk, then she became a member of an Outreach Committee, then an Outreach Chair, then Event Chair of TypeOneNAtion and currently a second 6 year term on the Board of Directors. The entire Dreyer family is committed to volunteering to find the cure and believes that JDRF’s mission is the way to do that!
Personally and professionally, Cindy is a nurse who cares for her special need daugher Jackie at home. She and her husband Jeff live with Jackie, and an Australian Shepherd named Millie in Trabuco Canyon.
Board Member since 2002About Scott...
Board Member since 2002
Scott Farber has been personally committed to finding a cure for type 1 diabetes (T1D) since his daughter was diagnosed with T1D in 2001 at the age of seven. Along with his wife Bronwyn, they has been intimately involved with the JDRF Orange County Chapter for years, volunteering at a number of levels, including president of the Orange County Chapter Board, Walk Chair and Treasurer. Stephanie graduated from the University of Oregon and is working for a digital media advertising agency in Newport Beach.
Professionally, Scott has been a Partner at Grant Thornton LLP since 1992. He is currently the West Region Audit Practice Leader and International Business Center Director. Additionally, he served as an elected member of the firm’s Partnership Board from 2005 to 2011. Scott and his family lived in Hong Kong from 1995-1998 when he served as Grant Thornton’s Asia Pacific Technical Director and Liaison Partner with responsibility over 16 countries.
Scott has more than 35 years of experience in the areas of complex financial reporting, international trade, risk assessment and strategic financial transactions. He has provided guidance to a wide range of companies, from emerging start-ups to large publicly-held entities with global operations.
Board Member since 2013About Carl...
Board Member since 2013
Carl Hattermann is the Senior Vice President at UBS and has been a JDRF board member since 2013. Carl has an undergraduate degree in Biology from Whittier College. He also earned an MBA in Finance from the University of Southern California. His prior career experience includes positions on finance staff at Ford Motor Credit Corporation, Manager of Financial Planning for Caesars World, and finally assistant treasurer for Hilton Hotels. He has earned a Certified Cash Manager designation from the Association of Financial Professionals and is a member of the Association for Corporate Growth.
Nominating & Board Development Chair - Member since 2006About Julie...
Nominating & Board Development Chair - Member since 2006
Julie Hellmers graduated from Cal State Fullerton with a BA in Liberal Studies. Julie spent her career selling Cardiovascular products for Merck Pharmaceuticals for 10 years before committing full time to become a mother of 3 as well as a community leader. Julie’s commitment with JDRF started nearly 11 years ago after her Daughter Katherine was diagnosed at age 4 and not long after her son Brennen was also diagnosed with T1D. Julie is the Nominating and Board Development Chair and is also involved with Gala and the Dream Guild committee.
Treasurer - Board Member since 2000About Karen...
Treasurer - Board Member since 2000
Karen has an affinity to help others both in professional and personal development. She has always been a strong proponent of companies engaging in philanthropy whereby good acts improve operating conditions, quality of life—and positively serve society. She is a Leadership Practitioner and Coach with over 20 years of experience in corporate, small and mid-size business and non-profit organizations. Portions of her business focus on incorporating leadership development with efforts of philanthropic Sustainability
With a Marketing, Sales and HR background she enjoys advocating for non-profits. JDRF, OneOC, Hoag Hospital, Operation Homefront, AHA, Working Wardrobes and the OC Performing Arts Center’s Business Partnership.
She has a true kinship and adoration for JDRF and has held several board member and leadership positions with the OC Chapter for over 12 years. Currently she holds a seat on the Executive Committee. Karen is a T1D and she and her husband are personally committed to finding a cure.
Board Member since 2015About Christina...
Board Member since 2015
Christina has been committed to JDRF after witnessing what her close friend’s children went through after being diagnosed. Christina has been active with the JDRF Dream Guild for 6 years and on the Board of Directors for 3 years. Christina also served as President of the Dream Guild in 2015/2016 as well as co-chaired countless events including the 2017 Dream Gala.
Board Member since 2014About Jeff...
Board Member since 2014
Jeff Klein has been personally committed to finding a cure for type 1 diabetes (T1D) since his son Hunter was diagnosed with T1D in 2009 at the age of 11. Along with his wife Kristi, he has been intimately involved with the JDRF Orange County Chapter, including a member of the Board of Directors and Chairman of the Golf Committee as well as walk committee member.
Professionally, Jeff is a business owner at The Boston Group and DC Environmental operating in the recycling and environmental services business sector.
Board Member since 2006About Bob...
Board Member since 2006
Bob Loewen first began supporting JDRF in the 1990s as a donor when Ally, the daughter of his friend and partner Phil Bosl and wife Charlene was diagnosed with T1D at age 3. When Bob’s own son, Todd, was diagnosed at age 19 in 2004, Bob joined the JDRF Board. Tragically, Ally died from low blood sugar the following year shortly after graduating from college, compounding Bob’s commitment to find a cure to this terrible disease.
Bob is a retired attorney, who concluded his career as a partner at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP after 36 years in 2014. Bob is a veteran, having served a tour in the Army in Vietnam. He is Chairman of the California Policy Center, a think tank devoted to public education reform and fiscal responsibility in government. A longtime officer and board member of the Lincoln Club of Orange County, Mr. Loewen is a member of its Board of Counselors and is Chairman Emeritus. He also serves on the Board of Advisors of the Claremont Institute Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence. Married to Jacinta Loewen in 1972, the couple has three grown children and has lived in Laguna Beach for over thirty years.
Board Member since 2017About Julie...
Board Member since 2017
Julie’s involvement with JDRF began when her son Robby was diagnosed with T1D on August 16th, 2004. She has witnessed first hand JDRF’s unwavering commitment to fund promising research for new and better treatments, technology and the ultimate goal of a cure and this is why she is passionate and committed to the mission of JDRF. Through the years Julie has enjoyed participating in chapter events, volunteering, advocating, and serving on several committees. The T1D community is an amazing group of people and the JDRF Orange County Chapter is like family to her. Julie, along with her husband Robert, son Robby and daughter Amanda will continue to support JDRF until Type One is Type NONE!
Julie is a Realtor with First Team Estates/Christie’s International Real Estate, Newport Beach and is blessed to have the opportunity to partner with amazing clients and guide them through their real estate journey. Julie’s three favorite words are “JDRF”, “CURE” and “SOLD!”
Board Member Since 2014About Laura...
Board Member Since 2014
Laura joined the JDRF Orange County board in 2014. She is passionate to help find a cure for T1D and serves on the golf committee. Laura has been part of the restaurant landscape for her entire life and opened her first restaurant at the age of 23 in Newport Beach. Today, Laura works with her family at the Newport & Naples Rib Company, a barbeque restaurant known for giving back to the community that has supported them for the past 30 years. Previously, she was the Director of Programs and Development for ACT Today!, a national non-profit that provides services and support to children diagnosed with autism.
Laura, who has TID, lives in Costa Mesa with her husband Jerry and three children Amber (18), Justin (15) and Jessica (15). She also serves on the board of her church and actively supports her children’s activities.
Tom PorterAbout Tom...
With a background in finance and investments, Tom Porter opened Marquee Staffing’s first branch in 1989. For the past 25 years, the firm has built a strong reputation based around developing strategic relationships with candidates and clients throughout Southern California. In addition, Tom utilizes his positions on the board for both TSIL and TempNet to provide current and potential clients with the best insight on changing labor laws and best practices within the industry. Giving back to the community has been a integral focus for Tom and the Marquee Team for the past 25 years. Through his work with JDRF, regular partnerships with local charities and engaging his team on active volunteerism, Tom believes philanthropic programs play a deciding factor on Marquee’s success today.
Contact Tom Porter at email@example.com to partner with us!
Board Member since 2007About Jim...
Board Member since 2007
Jim’s daughter Stephanie was diagnosed with Type 1 at 13 months. Looking to get involved he literally knocked on the door of his local JDRF chapter and that led to 10+ year association with the Dallas Chapter including chapter president, chapter vice-president and vp of fundraising. Jim also served on the board of directors of the Orange County Chapter of JDRF for 6 years from 2007 – 2013 including the executive board, treasurer and committee chairman of the Fore the Kids golf tournament. He has now returned to the board again as of 2017. He is a senior vice-president with First American and lives in Ladera Ranch with his wife Sherry and youngest of his three daughters, Shelby.
Linda RobertsonAbout Linda...
Linda Maxwell Robertson was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes 40 years ago. Throughout that time she has been an active member of JDRF serving as a volunteer in NYC and Orange County. She is committed to finding a cure and raising awareness, serving on the outreach committees and as the chapter’s research information volunteer. Linda is a licensed marriage and family therapist in private practice and a mental health specialist with the Santa Ana Unified School District. Among those she helps are individuals with type 1 diabetes and their families manage the psycho-social effects of the disease. She has been a speaker, panelist and moderator at forums devoted to exploring the topics of T1D.
Board President Elect - Member since 2011About J.D...
Board President Elect - Member since 2011
JD Shafer has been an active JDRF board member and advocate for many years. He has served on the golf committee as chair and is currently Board President Elect for the FY18 year. JD has been quietly dealing with his own type 1 diagnosis for over 30 years. JD has two supportive children, one of which, Tiffany, is a freshman at the University of Washing in Seattle. Trevor is an incoming senior at Tesoro high school and talented tennis player. JD worked for the Robert Mayer Corporation for 9 years prior to joining the Irvine Company 4 years ago. As Senior Director, he oversees a sizable portfolio in apartment home rental communities throughout Orange County. He has served in the capacity of Board President of the Conference and Visitor Bureau of Huntington Beach, and on the Executive Committee of the HB Chamber of Commerce. The chamber recognized him as the business person of the year while working at the Hilton Resort.
Board President - Member since 2007About John...
Board President - Member since 2007
John Stoner has been involved with JDRF since his son Tommy was diagnosed in 2006. John is presently serving as the President of the JDRF Orange County Board of Directors. John has also been involved on the Gala Committee, where he has co-chaired the wine committee for several years, and on the Major Gifts and Outreach Committees. John was co-chair of the 2014 Gala. John’s wife Barbara Fox Stoner is also involved with JDRF, having served as a trained mentor and as a member of the Nominating and Board Development Committee.
Professionally, John and Barbara have both practiced law in Orange County since the mid-1980’s. In 2013, they founded their own firm, Stoner Fox Law Group, LLP. Barbara is also an instructor at California State University Dominguez Hills.
Board Member since 1997About Ann...
Board Member since 1997
Ann Winthrop has been personally committed to finding a cure for type 1 diabetes (T1D) since her daughter was diagnosed with T1D in 1995 at the age of 8. Along with her husband, Marc she has been intimately involved with the JDRF Orange County Chapter for years, volunteering at a number of levels, including holding two terms as Executive Board President, Chapter Walk Chair, Gala Chair and Guild President. Ann served as a Regional Chapter Services volunteer supporting 14 chapters in the western region.
Professionally, Ann has worked in the Human Resources area for companies in the pharmaceutical, automotive and technology sectors. She has also worked as a professional fundraiser.