The WISE Board serves as an advisory group for the Bonita J. Campbell Endowment for Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) that helps in guiding future and present women in career endeavors in the fields of engineering, math and science. This is accomplished by serving as a communication central node to local, nationwide, and worldwide active organizations in these fields. We act as an advisory committee to improve the understanding, appreciation, and recognition of Women’s contributions in these technical fields. We also support the occupational growth of women within the math and science industries. The board provides advice on the expenditure of funds related to the endowment and in alignment with its goals. We look to maintain high levels of ethical, professional and educational standards with all those organizations seeking our guidance.
Advisory Board By-Laws (PDF)
Advisory Board, 2020-2021
- Laurene Abato-Earwood
- Eunice Bagwan
- Laura Nowatzki-Bilek
- Bonnie Campbell
- Shadi Mahjoob
- Phyllis Marbach, Chair of the Board
- Rashmi Shah
- Sandra Stoller
- Mark Stover
- Virginia Oberholzer Vandergon
- Marilee Wheaton
Board Member Biographies
Laurene joined Xerox in 1985 in the Electronics Operations as a summer intern. She has worked in engineering, software, and product development, moving into technical program management delivering custom engineering solutions. She transitioned from Technology to Services and was the TPM for gov’t healthcare web projects, until Xerox separated to become Xerox and Conduent. Laurene retired from Xerox and joined Conduent in Jan 2017 as a TPM for Global delivery projects.
Laurene received her BS degree in Biological/Chemical Sciences from Binghamton University in N.Y. and a Master’s degree in Electronic Engineering from State University California at Northridge. She lives in Northridge with her husband and two children.
She is involved with FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) & REC Robotics working with high school students building competitive robots and volunteers as judge and referee at local tournaments. Laurene was a recipient at the 2019 Volunteer Service Awards and has been a board member for WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) at CSUN since 2011. See Image Gallery from the 2019 Volunteer Service Awards
Eunice Bagwan received her bachelor’s degree from CSUN in Environmental and Occupational Health (EOH) as well as a master’s degree from the School of Engineering at Johns Hopkins University in Environmental Management and Planning. She currently works as an Environmental Planner at Chambers Group. Eunice has been a WISE board member since 2021.
Laura Nowatzki-Bilek is a mechanical engineer who graduated with a degree from UCSB. She originally worked in telecommunications designing central office equipment for wireless telecom after graduation. Later, Laura shifted to the cosmetics industry where she initially worked as a design engineer and eventually transitioned to sales. Laura’s career has been serving as the Vice President and General Manager of the West Coast in North America for global cosmetics manufacturing companies. Currently, Laura has turned to entrepreneurship as she is now the co-founder/COO/CFO of Halcyon Beauty. Laura has been a member of the WISE advisory board since 2019.
Shadi Mahjoob teaches in the Mechanical Engineering Department at CSUN. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Amirkabir University of Technology (Tehran Polytechnic) in Iran, as well as a Ph.D. from U.C. Riverside. She has published widely in the engineering literature, including scholarly journal articles in the ASME Journal of Heat Transfer and the International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. In addition, she has experience in industry as a scientist and engineer. Shadi is a member of the American Society of Engineering Education and Women in Engineering ProActive Network, Inc. Shadi has been a WISE board member since 2020.
Phyllis is a Senior Advisor with Stellar Solutions, Inc.Recently she was an Agile Coach and Trainer for the teams on the Future Operationally Resilient Ground Evolution (FORGE) program. FORGE will provide the Next Generation Overhead Persistent Infrared ground system. Retired from Boeing Defense Space and Security (BDS) in 2016, Phyllis has over 35 years of experience in aerospace programs such as satellites, chemical lasers, the International Space Station, and various propulsion systems. Her final 8 years with Boeing, she was an agile coach for the Boeing Enterprise for unmanned air systems, radio, avionics, and research programs. Phyllis was a Boeing Designated Expert in agile software development, software engineering and systems engineering. She is a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM), a Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO) and a Scaled Agile Framework™ Version 4.0 Program Consultant (SPC). Phyllis is active on the board of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) Los Angeles Chapter and has served as the President, Vice President, Membership Director and currently Secretary.Phyllis received a B.S. from Centre College of Kentucky in 1977, a Certificate in Engineering from CSUN in 1979 and her M.S. in Engineering from UCLA in 1984.Phyllis has been a WISE board member since 2015. email@example.com
Rashmi Shah received her Masters of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from CSUN, along with her Bachelors of Science degree in chemistry.She worked at Rockwell/Boeing for 35 years before retiring. Rashmi received several awards including the Rockwell Chairman Diversity Award, multiple Customer Satisfaction Awards, and Technical Team awards. In addition, she was an “Engineer of the Year” award finalist. Rashmi has published many scientific journal articles in the areas of heat exchanger innovations, thermal effects in laser-induced damage, and acoustic-optics modulators. She also holds a patent on Volume Absorbing Beam Dump. During her career, Rashmi was able to use her unique combination of Chemistry, Mechanical Engineering, Thermal Management, and Electro-optical background to understand and guide technical staff. She was a skilled manager of employees at various levels while also performing highly technical simulations and analyses. Rashmi has been a WISE board member since 2019.
Sandra Stoller is currently a Systems Engineer at Blue Origin, which is developing space launch systems for space tourism and a variety of commercial and government customers. She was previously a Principal Engineer at Aerojet Rocketdyne, where she worked in various aspects of rocket propulsion and space and terrestrial-based energy for over 41 years. During her tenure at Rocketdyne, the company changed hands several time, so she has worked for Rockwell International, The Boeing Company, Pratt and Whitney Rocketdyne and Aerojet Rocketdyne during that time period. Sandy is a graduate of CSUN's engineering program and was one of the earliest members of the first iteration of WISE when it was a support system for female engineering students. Sandy has been a WISE board member since 2021.
Virginia Oberholzer Vandergon (Gini) is a Professor of Biology at CSUN. Her research interests are in the field of metabolic pathway evolution in plants. Using bioinformatics and molecular tools she studies the evolutionary history of genes through the study of gene families that are linked in pathways. Another part of her position is as a K-12 science education liaison. Gini was a high school biology teacher and spent time in elementary, middle and high school classrooms teaching science and math. Working with pre-service teachers in a non-majors Biology course she designed a service learning component called Tomorrow’s Scientist, an afterschool club for middle school students, who are taught by CSUN students, who design and implement engaging science lessons. She also works with STEM scholars who might want to be science teachers providing field experiences for them. Gini has been a member of the WISE Advisory Board since 2020.
Marilee J. Wheaton is a Systems Engineering Fellow at The Aerospace Corporation, where she provides technical leadership and builds capability across the Corporation on enterprise systems engineering, systems architecting, and model-based systems engineering. Previously she was the Executive Director of the Aerospace Institute which operated the Charles E. Lauritsen Library, responsible for information research and archive resources of the corporation, and managed The Aerospace Press.
Marilee is a Fellow and Life Member of the Society of Women Engineers and an active member of the Los Angeles Section for over 30 years. She received a SWE Distinguished Service Award in 2010 and the SWE Advocating for Women in Engineering award in 2020. In addition to her service to SWE, Marilee has made contributions to increasing the awareness of women in engineering through her participation and leadership in other professional societies.
A Fellow of AIAA, Wheaton is an active member of the Systems Engineering Technical Committee, and a Fellow of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE), where she is the current INCOSE President-Elect. Marilee has a B.A. magna cum laude in Mathematics and Spanish from California Lutheran University. She holds an M.S. in Systems Engineering from the University of Southern California (USC). In addition, she is a graduate of the UCLA Executive Program in Management. Wheaton has served as adjunct faculty in the Systems Architecting and Engineering Program at USC Viterbi. Marilee has been a WISE board member since 2011, and was a recipient of the 2016 CSUN Volunteer Service Award.
WISE Advisory Board Past Members
2010 to current
We are grateful for the following members who have served on the WISE Advisory Board over the past several years. Their selfless service has encouraged thousands of girls and young women (as well as boys and young men) to enter and excel in the STEM fields.
Susan Belgrad served for eight years as a member of the WISE Board, and is currently Professor of Education at CSUN, specializing in STEM education. During her time of service on the Board, she was heavily involved in planning several of the WISE programs, including the annual Pi Day celebration. Susan currently serves as the faculty lead for the STEM MA and also leads the STEM Innovations Team with faculty and administrators from the College of Education and Engineering and Computer Sciences. The Team advances the need for educators to focus on the "T and E" in STEM learning to promote student achievement from Pre-K to College and Career.
Sharon Cascadden started at the Hughes Missile Systems division of Hughes Aircraft Company as a student engineer in 1979 before graduating from CSUN as a mechanical/materials science engineer in December 1980. In 1983, she transferred to Hughes Space and Communications Company where she became the top technical expert in nondestructive evaluation (NDE) and damage assessment of communications satellite structures until her retirement in 1999. At CSUN, she was active in the Society of Women Engineers as the charter president of SWE-CSUN, Tau Beta Pi, and ASME. On Tuesday, September 17, 2013, Sharon passed away after battling cancer for several months. Sharon was a very active WISE board member, and served on the WISE board for three years before her death.
Jenniffer Herrera served on the WISE Board for nine years, including two years as chair. She was born in Guatemala, and immigrated to the United States with her family at the age of nine. Jenniffer graduated from CSUN with both a Bachelors in Manufacturing Systems Engineering in 2006, and a Masters in Engineering management in 2009. Her first industry position was with Nestle, USA as an Industrial Engineer in the Hot Pockets factory in Chatsworth, starting September 2010. Jenniffer has been working for Nestle, USA since and is now in the Glendale Corporate Office. She has held several positions including Goal Alignment Lead for the International Brand Division and Lean Value Stream Manager for the Confections Division. Her current role is Technical Service Manager continuing to support the Confections division. In addition to her service on the WISE Board, Jenniffer participated on campus panel discussions at CSUN and served on the local chapter of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE). She won the CSUN Volunteer Service Award in 2018.
Diane Kulisek served for four years on the WISE Board, and continues to be very active as a Quality Assurance Leader and Consultant for FDA-regulated companies. Her experience encompasses development and manufacture of everything from mechanical pencils to rocket engines, with her most recent efforts having been focused upon the specialized needs of the medical device industry. Her major employers, representing approximately 25 years of her career, have included Johnson & Johnson, The Gillette Company, and Rockwell International. She has also worked with many smaller companies and a wide variety of other industries, including toy manufacturing, explosives and explosive devices for aerospace applications, filtration for commercial and pharmaceutical applications, electronic component manufacturing, high technology computer manufacturing, and in software development.
Diane received her MS in Engineering in 1992 and a BA in Biology in 1979, both from CSUN. In addition to her CSUN degrees, she is certified by the American Society for Quality (ASQ) as a Manager of Quality / Organizational Excellence (CMQ/OE) and as a Quality Engineer (CQE). Diane’s other professional activities include past and present leadership roles for ASQ at the global, national and local levels, a position on the Board of Directors for the Engineers’ Council in San Fernando Valley, co-founding of the CSUN Center for Quality and Productivity Improvement at CSUN, co-establishment of the CSUN APICS-ASQ Student Chapter, leading the Southern California Chapter of the Institute for Operations Research and Management Science (INFORMS), participation on the Industry Advisory Council for the Department of Systems and Operations Management within the College of Business at CSUN and guest lecturing for quality-related courses offered at CSUN, USC, UCLA, CSU Los Angeles and CSU Dominguez Hills.
Susan McConnell has over 25 years of experience in medical device development. She has worked in large and small medical device companies including Abbott, Boston Scientific, Siemens, MiniMed, Amgen, and Medtronic. She has worked on the design, development and qualification of drug pumps, pacemakers, and hospital safety products. She holds several patents in the field. She received degrees in Materials Engineering and in Physics from the University of Utah and has an MBA in Technology Management. Susan served on the WISE board for over seven years.
Nancy McIntyre was a high school science teacher at Chaminade College Preparatory and ran the Eagle Engineering robotics program. With a BS in Education from C W Post University and a MA from Adelphi University in New York, she has more than 20 years of teaching with most of it focused in biology and robotics. Nancy is a FIRST Robotics Senior Mentor and an event partner with VEX robotics who travels across the nation and around the world to help improve STEM education. Nancy served on the WISE board for four years.
Kathleen “Kappy” Paulson
Kathleen “Kappy” Paulson received her BS in Biology in 1973 from Marietta College, and her BS in Engineering from CSUN in 1985. She has been a mechanical engineer for the Naval Facilities Engineering Service Center (NFESC) in Port Hueneme, CA since 1980. She has been involved in numerous environmental safety projects, such as the Navy’s Environmental Sustainability Development to Integration Program. She works with the NFESC’s Environmental Department as a climate change contact, and is a subject matter expert on industrial ventilation for NAVFAC (Naval Facilities Engineering Command). She is the recipient of the 2010 NFESC Engineer of the Year award. She retired from the Navy in 2015, and served on the WISE board for nine years.
Lilly Shraibati served as a member of the WISE Board for eight years, including two years as chair. She graduated from CSUN with a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering, is a registered Civil Engineer in the State of California, and holds a Grade 3 Water Distribution Operator certificate with the California Department of Public Health. Lilly works for the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, managing over 170 diverse group of engineering, technical, and administrative staff. Her other commitments include serving on the CSUN Industry Advisory Board for the Department of Civil Engineering and Applied Mechanics and participating in events which encourage America’s youth to engage in the engineering field. Lilly was selected for a CSUN Volunteer Service Award in 2014.
Jackie Wollner worked in the engineering world for over 30 years. Her focus is in the fields of Business Management Systems, Reliability, Maintainability, System Safety, Human Factors, and Quality engineering. Her experience ranges from aerospace, to defense, to the food industry. Jackie has served on various industry boards and committees, and was the first woman to serve as the General Chairperson of the Annual Reliability and Maintainability Symposium. She is the Corporate Business Systems Integrity Manager for Moog, Inc., a worldwide designer, manufacturer, and integrator of precision control components and systems. Jackie participated in the Career Facilitation Program for Women in Engineering which was funded by the National Science Foundation, held at CSU Northridge. She has a Master’s Degree in Engineering, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology, both from CSUN. She served on the WISE board for two years.