Meet Our Board

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Sonia Bar

Sonia is a freelance production professional, working in commercials, TV shows, and independent films. She also writes, directs, and produces her own projects, and has formed "The Hollywood Dream Crew,” a team of production assistants working together to bring new voices and create content in Hollywood. 

Carol Biondi

Carol has been an advocate for children and youth in the foster care and delinquency systems for 40 years and has served on numerous non-profit boards and on several government boards.  Currently, she is a Commissioner on the L.A. County Commission for Children and Families and the California Governor’s Advisory Committee for Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. She is also on the board of the Children’s Defense Fund, The United Friends of the Children and The Anti Recidivism Coalition. She is married, and has two daughters and six grandchildren.

Brendan Countee

Brendan Countee is Vice President of Development and Production at Showtime Networks. He helped launch original programming at Hulu with shows like CASUAL, THE MINDY PROJECT and DIFFICULT PEOPLE. Before that he was a comedy writer and performer for Handsome Donkey. Before joining the board at ManifestWorks, Brendan spent a decade volunteering as a mentor for incarcerated children in Los Angeles County. 

Grant DeVaul

Grant is a Private Wealth Advisor and co-founder of The Core Group at RBC Wealth Management. Grant and his wife Virginia are committed to supporting the most needy communities in Los Angeles.

 

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Lucy Firestone

Lucy is the co-founder of Wild Precious Life, a lifestyle company that produces and curates experiences and products designed to catalyze transformation and inspire freedom. With a background in film industry, she continues to develop projects that she is passionate about. She also serves on the board of InsideOut Writers and has spent many Saturdays with incarcerated youth in a mentoring/life skills program that seeded ManifestWorks.

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Art Gonzales

Art works as a freelance production assistant in television, commercials, and music videos. Art is also a story consultant with the goal of becoming a producer. Additionally, Art volunteers his time mentoring others and in advocacy for social justice reforms.

 

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Jan Levine

Formerly a juvenile court judge on the Los Angeles Superior Court, Jan continues to work with under-served and incarcerated youth.  She is a member of the county Probation Commission and also volunteers as a writing teacher within the county’s detention facilities. She is the mother of three adult children, an amateur photographer and struggles in pursuit of French fluency. 

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Michele Mulroney

Michele is an LA-based screenwriter and director, and a graduate of London’s Central School of Speech & Drama.  In the UK, she spent several years working with reentry programs for the formerly incarcerated, and was a residential social worker at East London’s Mill Grove Children’s Home. She mentors at several writers labs, including Sundance and Outfest, and teaches at the American Film Institute.  She is a board member of the Writers Guild of America.  

Diane McArter 

Diane is the founder of Furlined, Love Child and Jefferson Projects, and co-founder of ManifestWorks. With over 30 years experience in commercial advertising, she's committed to producing creative and strategic content that will influence and effect social change. She has served on The Board of Governors for the AICP/Museum of Modern Art and has participated as a judge at the Cannes Festival.

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Dan Seaver

A former journalist and advertising copywriter, Dan is one of the founders of ManifestWorks.  He spent more than a decade as a volunteer in a Los Angeles youth incarceration facility, and is currently a Commissioner for the Los Angeles County Probation Department. He is married and has a daughter. 

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Shelly Townshend 

Shelly has worked as a Commercial Production Executive for 20 years, representing many internationally acclaimed directors, and overseeing projects shooting all over the world. She is a member of the AICP Negotiating Committee, and has most recently become deeply involved in diversity issues as they relate to the film industry.  She is a member of the Ghetto Film School Advisory Board, and a member of the Commercial Director Diversity Program Committee.

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Prophet Walker

Prophet is a businessman, an engineer, and an advocate for justice reform. Access to educational opportunities nurtured Prophet’s own transformation, and he studied engineering at Loyola Marymount University, quickly entering the construction business. Now, a builder, developer and co-founder of Upwell Real Estate, Prophet is intent on bringing opportunity to under-served communities around California. 

 
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Chip Warren

The third founding member of ManifestWorks, Chip is a storyteller at heart and has applied his passion to projects that inform, persuade, and enlighten, with a keen interest in social justice issues. Chip has produced and directed documentaries for film and broadcast partners, as well as educational media that’s used in universities and public institutions nationwide.