The following people have all served as board members in the past. We are who we are today thanks to their leadership and guidance and we are, forever, grateful for their service.
Edward Robles is the Sr. Director of Sales, Americas for Euronet Worldwide, Inc., a NASDAQ company (EEFT). Mr. Robles brings over 30 years’ experience in the electronic payments and financial services industries, having led several companies to significant growth and prominence.
Also highly regarded and respected as a civic leader, Mr. Robles rose from active volunteer to the position of Chairman with the National Conference for Community and Justice in, a human relations organization dedicated to fighting bias and bigotry in America. As a volunteer, he was awarded the
Distinguish Merit Citation Award and lauded for his commitment and dedication to the organization’s goals. Furthermore, Mr. Robles served as Co Chairman of the Technology division of the Chamber of the Americas, and also served on the boards of the Latino/a College Leadership Council, the Herb and Lani Alpert Scholarship Fund, and the Center City Community Center. He currently serves on the Colorado Council for Community and Justice and is the founder and Chairman of Operation Project HOPE (Helping Other People Everyday.)
A native of Los Angeles, California, Mr. Robles earned a BS in Business Administration, a BA in Management at the University of Phoenix; and a MBA in International Business at American Intercontinental University. Ed Robles enjoys his home in Los Angeles with his family.
Mrs. Robin Polito has been an educator and administrator for several years and has a deep rooted passion for children’s well-being and equal access to education. She has been an elementary school principal in the Los Angeles Unified School District for the past 16 years and is now a K-8 span school principal. Mrs. Polito possesses a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from CSULA, and is bilingual certified in Spanish from the state of California.
In the infancy stages of OPH, she coined the phrase, “World Peace, One Child at a Time”. She has been actively involved in our organization for the last 11 years. Mrs. Polito believes that every child deserves a beautiful setting in which to learn, which is why she has supported OPH since day one. These days, she leads the school beautification HOPE Grows projects. To quote John Maxwell, “Students don't care how much you know until they know how much you care.” Mrs. Polito serves tirelessly on our board of directors as the board secretary from 2017 through 2020.
Nick Van Der Wende is the group supervisor for Product Leads who design and operate custom engineering applications at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Nick had started at JPL as a graduate intern helping manage residual flight hardware and working on small IT projects. In his 18 years of service at JPL Nick has supervised multiple groups, sat on advisory boards and led many IT projects and
process improvement initiatives.
Nick’s community service started in the Boy Scouts where he routinely helped in his local community and completed a community safety project for is Eagle Scout project. Nick continued serving the community in college through his Fraternity sponsoring awareness and fundraising for Phi Delta Theta’s fight against ALS. Nick has also volunteered to various organizations and events: Big Brothers Big Sisters, Beach Clean-ups, Adopt-A-Highway, and Gentle Barn to name a few. Nick enjoys enhancing the lives of others through service in whatever capacity he can. Currently he also serves at his children’s daycare as the Child Education Center’s Parent Council Co-Chair in addition to his service as a Board Member of Operation Project HOPE (Helping Other People Everyday.)
William Guardado is the Human Resource Manager for Fresh Origins, the leading microgreens and edible flowers producer in the United States. William has over 16 years of experience managing various
aspects of Human Resources from small to Fortune 100 companies. His professional career started as a
FINRA licensed Financial Associate and worked his way up to become part of a national acquisition team with Citigroup as a transition training coach. Volunteering and being an active community member has always held a special place in William’s heart and he has always believed in giving back. Growing up, he attended public schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District and understands first-hand the power and influence external organizations have on children. William has worked closely with the founders of MLA Partners Schools (formerly Mentor LA) during the early stages as a volunteer. As an extension to the well being of children’s future he worked closely with programs helping victims of domestic violence. He has served as an ambassador with the Junior Achievement USA foundation to help prepare K-12 grades with financial literacy. He has also served as an ambassador for the Habitat for Humanity organization helping build homes for underserved communities. Aside from working with people he truly enjoys working with organizations who help our furry friends and volunteered at the Burbank animal shelter in Burbank, CA. He believes animals represent sheer innocence and considers them more of family members and less as pets.
William holds a BA in Animation from Westwood College and a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt certification
from UCLA Extension. He enjoys traveling and has visited over 14 countries. Mr. Guardado has been on
our Board of Directors since 2020.