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The Leaven Board of Directors

Joe Allio President of the Board
member since 2012
Subcommittee: Personnel

Joe Allio is Chief of Police with the Fairfield Police Department and a 28-year veteran of law enforcement. He began his law enforcement career in South San Francisco, and four years later joined the Fairfield Police Department where he was an officer, a Sergeant and a Captain before being selected by the City Manage as Chief of Police. During this time, he also severed in pastoral positions at local churches, was a member of the Host Lions Club and the President of the Northern California Batten Disease Association. As a member of the Fairfield Police Department, he served on the SWAT team, was a founding member of the Peer Support Team, participated in the development of "active shooter" response training and developed and implemented the Police Probation Team. He has earned two Exceptional Performance Citations. Allio and his wife, Kathy, reside in Vacaville.

Sheilah Tucker Vice President
Member since 2014
Subcommittee: Board Development, Marketing/
Development and Personnel

Sheilah Tucker has lived in Solano County more than 30 years and is a former broadcaster and now works as a realtor for Coldwell Banker Kappel Gateway Realty. She is a member of the Fairfield-Suisun Chamber of Commerce and Chair of the Travis Regional Armed Forces Committee, is past president of the Soroptimists of Central Solano and has held volunteer leadership positions with the Napa/Solano Girl Scouts and the Solano County Library Foundation. Tucker and her husband, Joe, live in Fairfield, California

Gary Gottschall Treasurer
Member since 2014
Subcommittee: Finance and Board Development

Gary Gottschall is the Deputy Commander, 60th Operations Group, Travis Air Force Base. As the civilian deputy commander, he assists in the management of more than 1,000 personnel and 8.5 billion in assets and all mission support activities, including an operations support squadron providing air traffic control, weather, intelligence, flight management support, and KC-10 initial qualification and upgrade training. Gary, a graduate of the Air Force Academy, retired as a Colonel, Commander, 615 Contingency Response Wing, from the United States Air Force in 2012; as an Air Force pilot, he had over 3800 flying hours, primarily in the C-130. He took part in a wide variety of global mobility missions and deployments while on active duty including Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation New Dawn, Operation Unified Assistance, Operation Pacific Passage and many other contingency and humanitarian operations. Gary, his wife Trish and their two daughters live in Vacaville, CA.

Martha Lacy Secretary
Member since 2012
Subcommittee: Operations and Finance

Martha Lacy is the principal at David A. Weir Preparatory Academy. She strongly believes that every child can and will be a success. Since becoming principal, Lacy has helped teachers and students develop, evidenced by a 130 point increase in the Academic Performance Index (API). Students have doubled proficiency in mathematics and increased by over 15 percentage points in English Language Arts. Mrs. Lacy is actively involved with the community, seeking support for her students and their families. This included linking with a local church to provide families with food every Friday and coordinating a GED program for students' parents. Lacy lives in Vacaville, California with her husband Nicholas.

Annette Fortney Member since 2015
Subcommittee: Operations

Annette is the Owner/Operator of the Chick-fil-A franchise in Fairfield, California, a store she opened for the company in September of 2011. A long-time employee of Chick-fil-A, Annette has been a wonderful partner with The Leaven, providing food for many of our special events. Annette is a long-time Fairfield resident, and she and her husband have two married sons. The family attends Real Life Church in Fairfield.

Mat Fratus Member since 2015
Subcommittee: Finance

Mat is the Fire Chief for Rialto, California, the location of The Leaven's first after-school center in Southern California. Before joining the Rialto fire department, Mat served for 24 years with the San Bernardino, California, fire department, most recently as the Deputy Fire Chief. He lives in a San Bernardino County mountain community with his wife and attends the Church of the Woods in Lake Arrowhead. Mat is the father of three sons and has two grandchildren.

David Zellner Member since 2015
Subcommittee: Board Development, Marketing/Development and Personnel

David is the Director of In-Park Services for Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo, California. Dave was first introduced to The Leaven through a friend and was impressed by the success of our model. "Day-to-day, I see the result of kids dropping out of education," Dave says. "What our young people need most is to find Christ and to succeed academically so they have opportunities for the future." Dave is a former Executive Sous Chef and worked for the corporate offices of Six Flags before relocating to Northern California and assuming his current role at the Vallejo theme park. He and his wife attend Crossroads Christian Church in Vacaville.

Mike Nail Member since 2016
Subcommittee: Operations

Mike Nail is a retired Judge of the Superior Court for the State of California, holding that position for more than two decades. Prior to assuming the bench, Judge Nail was District Attorney for Solano County for 11 years and Assistant District Attorney for 14 years. Upon his retirement in 2007, Judge Nail wanted to invest his time into helping at-risk children. He was a former member of the Lion's Club and a member and past president of Fairfield-Suisun Chamber of Commerce. He and his wife have three children and five grandchildren.