Meet Our Team
Heather Marie Burke
Heather Burke is the Director of Investor Relations, where she connects investors to innovative impact investment opportunities that use finance as a tool for social change. Heather is a social innovation and development strategist with 14 years of experience designing, financing, and leading innovative public-private humanitarian, CSR, and international development projects across 15 countries. Most recently, for 10 years, Heather led corporate social innovation and government relations for Project Belize–PwC’s $16 million Clinton Global Initiative youth education commitment in Belize. Heather is the Co-founder of girltank—a nonprofit recognized by Toyota and the Women in the World Summit as a “Mother of Invention” for the advancement of female social entrepreneurship. Heather received her M.A. at Johns Hopkins SAIS, where she was an Abraaj Global Policy Fellow.
David has 20 years of experience directing the acquisition, financing, ownership, and disposition of early-stage companies. He brings a deep knowledge of equity transactions including due diligence, structuring, closing, and operational management. David has a track record of profitable impact investing, and strategic advising. He and his associates make investments that match risk with returns and reconnect investors with the performance of the companies they invest in, selecting companies in need of financing that make a positive impact in the world—without sacrificing returns. David is a managing member of his family’s clean technology fund West Coast CleanTech (WCTT), founded on the belief that the confluence of economic, social and environmental factors driving rapid technological change in green technologies offers positive investment opportunities. David is a board member of the Baja Coastal Institute, a nonprofit organization devoted to regional environmental and socioeconomic research throughout Baja, Mexico. David is a graduate of the The University of New Hampshire.
As the Director of Community Relations, Laura builds community visibility for innovative social change strategies. Laura is also the founder and president of the Galinson Family Foundation, the Price-Galinson Collaborative Fund, the Alternative Families Fund, as well as the Laura Jo Galinson Advised Fund of the Jewish Community Foundation of San Diego. Laura has a bachelor of arts in comparative religion from University of Colorado, Boulder. She was a record-breaking swimmer and award-winning photographer, later serving as senior publicist at Harper Collins in San Francisco before relocating back to San Diego in 1997, when Laura’s father—Murray Galinson—introduced her to Sol Price, and her work in philanthropy began. Today, Laura focuses her charitable work on her passions for education, youth, mental health, and the arts. Laura and her wife, Jodi Diamond, are devoted mothers to their children Hannah, Bob, Syvan, and Teddy. Laura currently serves in leadership roles at the Museum of Photographic Arts (education chair and acquisitions and development committees); Jewish Women’s Foundation (board member), Support the Enlisted Project (advisory board and development committee), Psych Armor (mental health advisor), and Hillel San Diego (board member and capital campaign chair).
Lauren’s background in nonprofit development made her eager to activate more capital for social change, leading her to co-found Mission Driven Finance. As Chief Community Officer, she oversees community & philanthropic relationships, and marketing & communications. Prior to building Mission Driven Finance, she spent nearly 10 years fundraising for a wide variety of nonprofits—from large universities to small, volunteer-run initiatives. Lauren proudly serves as a board member of Business for Good San Diego, a network of small business owners committed to policies supporting their workers, families, community, and environment. She is a 2019 Social Venture Circle Innovation Entrepreneur, and an active member of Women Give San Diego, San Diego Social Venture Partners, SD Grantmakers, and SD Impact Investors Network. Lauren is an alumna of Punahou School in Honolulu, and Columbia University in the City of New York.
Louise is a San Diego native with a passion for community engagement and development. She previously worked in the legal industry where she conducted policy research for nonprofit in-house counsel and worked on the risk management team for a corporate law firm. During her undergraduate career, she interned for local and federal government offices to deepen her understanding of issues that impact her community, such as homelessness, education, and infrastructure. She also volunteered and served in public service programs, taking on roles that enhanced professional development for unemployed citizens, promoted mentorship for underprivileged women of color, and increased access to governmental nutritional programs. Louise received a bachelor of arts in Government from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. As a Community Finance Fellow, she plans to integrate her experience advocating for underserved communities with finance to help build a more inclusive economy.
Zach works as the data & operations coordinator where he assists the team’s efforts in portfolio management, compliance, loan closing, and data security. Before joining Mission Driven Finance, Zach graduated with honors from Point Loma Nazarene University with a double major in international development and finance. As an undergrad, he held various internships to pursue his passions of social justice and equity. He worked as a human trafficking research intern with The Center for Justice and Reconciliation, an international intern serving small businesses in Ecuador, a lending intern for Austin based CDFI PeopleFund, and a loan specialist at CDC Small Business Finance in San Diego.
David co-founded Mission Driven Finance in 2016 after spending 20 years working in the financial and philanthropic sectors and looking for a way to blend those two worlds. Prior to focusing on impact investing, David specialized in family office investment portfolios including both private investments and risk management through derivatives. Most recently, David has been the Investment Manager for the Price Group, a family office and charitable foundation environment, including directly running an actively managed equity derivatives portfolio and serving as a director with the Price Philanthropies Foundation. With a long dedication to community involvement, David has served in a leadership capacity for a variety of nonprofit and philanthropic initiatives, including San Diego Grantmakers, San Diego Impact Investors Network, Education Synergy Alliance, Mission Edge San Diego, San Diego Social Venture Partners, and San Diego Humane Society.
Andrew is an analyst with experience assisting small businesses and economic development. Prior to joining Mission Driven Finance, he was an analyst at Future Partners, a management consulting firm working to bridge the gap between large corporations and small minority-owned businesses. In addition, he has led services to spread financial knowledge in communities. He holds a bachelor of finance from Florida International University.
Louie Nguyen, CFA
Louie is a seasoned global investor, with a particular focus on disruptive endeavors and mobilizing capital and human resources to solve community pain points. Prior to joining Mission Driven Finance, Louie ran Soledad Investment Management, where he made global investments including impact-oriented investments in Vietnam. Before launching Soledad, Louie was a senior portfolio manager for the Needelman Asset Management International Value product. Earlier in his career, he worked directly with company founder Charles Brandes as an institutional portfolio manager for high-profile North American and Asian institutional clients at Brandes Investment Partners. Louie has held civic leadership positions with the Del Mar School Education Foundation, Mingei International Museum, and Asian American Repertory Theatre.
Benson’s passion for entrepreneurship and long-time vision to work with small businesses led him to join Mission Driven Finance. He previously worked as a marketing campaign specialist supporting real estate agents in the development and implementation of successful marketing campaigns. Furthermore, Benson also has an extensive background in human services where he worked with various nonprofit and public sector organizations including Alliance for African Assistance and Public Consulting Group, Inc. supporting New Americans and economically challenged populations in San Diego County to overcome barriers to employment and achieve self-sufficiency. He has taken active leadership roles in his community church by leading a cause-based group that engages specific issues in the local community through advocacy, awareness, and support. Benson attended Colorado State University-Global Campus, where he earned his undergraduate degree in business management with a specialization in small business and entrepreneurship. His long-term career aspiration is to become a business consultant supporting small businesses and social innovators developing impactful businesses in their communities.
Nancy A. O’Leary
Nancy has spent over 20 years of her career in the venture capital industry, most recently as the Chief Financial Officer of JK&B Capital, a $1.1 billion venture firm investing in the software, telecommunications and healthcare industries. At JK&B she has been responsible for all financial reporting, back-office operations, portfolio investment support, and investor relations. Prior to joining Mission Driven Finance, Nancy also founded and ran Keystone Associates, a provider of accounting and back-office services to venture capital and private equity funds in the Chicago area. Prior positions include managing the installation and conversion of the accounting systems with Lanac Technology, as well as a Director of Finance position at a human resources consulting firm. Nancy has served board leadership roles with Mission Edge San Diego and Spark Ventures and is a member of SD Social Venture Partners.
Laura’s mission is to design and scale solutions that drive social transformation and break down social, political, and economic inequities. She is committed to ensuring that communities of color are not only beneficiaries but also driving solutions. Her experience with capital access barriers motivated her to join Mission Driven Finance as Manager of Community Projects where she ensures that our team delivers unparalleled service to community partners and projects. Prior to joining the MDF team, she worked on equity and diversity projects as a social impact consultant. Laura is also an education advocate, a leadership coach, and is a passionate and strategic professional with over ten years of experience in corporate compliance, nonprofit management, community engagement, advocacy, and philanthropy. She is an alum of UC Berkeley, the Hispanas Organized for Political Equality (HOPE) Leadership Institute, the Leadership for Equity and Opportunity (LEO) | Rise Together Institute and the Hispanics in Philanthropy (HIP) Líderes Fellowship.
Essence is a San Diego native who loves to spend time with her family and friends and in her downtime enjoys reading historical fiction, romance, and thrillers. Growing up in an underrepresented community and having the opportunity to pursue her education enlightened her to the need for the betterment of communities that have been overlooked and underrepresented. She believes this fellowship at Mission Driven Finance will equip her with the tools and growth needed to aid underserved communities, in their attempt to better their lives and that of future generations. Essence graduated from the University of California, San Diego with a bachelor of arts in political science and international relations. While attending UCSD, she also worked as an undergraduate research fellow at the U.S. Immigration Policy Center at UCSD under Dr. Tom Wong.
Shreya has spent her career focused on the impact social conditions have on health, and has a unique combination of skills in grant-funded program implementation coupled with finance and operations. Prior to joining Mission Driven Finance, Shreya was Finance Director, Hospital and Health Plan Operations at Kaiser Permanente, and responsible for the startup budget to open a new $850M hospital. Before moving into the finance position, Shreya was Senior Community Benefit Manager in the Public Affairs Department and administered Kaiser Permanente’s $32M community benefit program. Earlier positions were at Community Health Improvement Partners and the Los Angeles County Public Health Department. Shreya is an officer at SD Grantmakers, member of the MAAC board of directors, is a LEAD San Diego graduate, and a former member of the Carmel Valley Community Planning Board.
Prior to joining Mission Driven Finance, Crystal worked as an executive assistant for a tomato harvesting company based out of Sacramento, and has previous experience in the restaurant and real estate industries. Crystal is expected to transfer to San Diego State University in September 2020 to pursue a degree in economics. While economics was not what she initially planned to major in, it is a field that she became very interested in after taking a job as an executive assistant, where she started to see the major financial imbalances between her community in Barrio Logan and the people she was working with in Downtown San Diego. She took particular note of the lack of financial literacy available to underserved and overlooked communities such as her own. Crystal hopes that her work with Mission Driven Finance will help her achieve her professional goal of becoming a financial advisor, and making financial education readily available to low-income communities.
Carrie Stokes Holst
Carrie works on the frontlines with Mission Driven Finance where she leads borrower engagement and management. She’s also the driving force behind impact, including the company’s B Corp certification. Prior to Mission Driven Finance, she earned her masters in public administration at the University of Washington where her capstone work focused on asset building and community economic development. Previous work includes community-based nonprofits and higher education.
Wilda is powered by impact and purpose, and has spent over a decade implementing communications strategies in the social sector prior to joining Mission Driven Finance, with nonprofit experience in the arts, reproductive health care, and workforce development. She is an alum of UC Berkeley’s film program, the U.S. Peace Corps’s health program in South Africa, the San Diego Leadership Alliance Institute, LEAD San Diego’s Impact, and Rockwood Leadership Institute’s Building Power Fellowship.