Laura Marcus | Chief Executive Officer
Ms. Marcus started her career in nonprofits in 1997 as part of an HIV/AIDS prevention project in South Africa and became Executive Director of the Human Care Alliance after returning to the United States in 2000. Laura joined Dientes Community Dental Care in 2004 and served as Executive Director from 2006 through 2008. After serving as the Vice President of risk at Nonprofits Insurance Alliance Group in Santa Cruz, Laura rejoined Dientes Community Dental Care as Chief Executive Officer in May 2011. A graduate of Leadership Santa Cruz County, she earned a bachelor’s degree from San Jose State University (a first generation college graduate) and is a fellow of Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, Leadership Institute for Nonprofit Executives. She completed her Master’s in Public Health from University of California, Berkeley in 2018. Laura currently serves on the board of the Health Improvement Partnership and recently finished a 5 -year term on the United Way board supporting the process to reinvigorate their business model for sustainability. She is a 2013 graduate of Focus Agriculture and a 2015 recipient of the Community Assessment Project Community Hero Award.
Dr. Sepi Taghvaei | Chief Dental Officer
Dr. Sepi Taghvaei attended San Jose State University for her undergraduate studies and obtained her Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from New York University College of Dentistry in 2009. She completed a one year General Practice Residency at Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno, CA where she learned the importance of access to care and providing underserved patients with dental care and education as early as possible to ensure a lifetime of great dental health. In 2014, after spending several years in a corporate dentistry environment in a leadership role, Dr. Taghvaei was excited to return to her passion of community dentistry as Dientes’ Chief Dental Officer. As the co-chair of Oral Health Access Santa Cruz County, Sepi has found great pleasure in leading a multi-partnership effort in improving the oral health of Santa Cruz County residents. Dr. Taghvaei lives in Aptos with her son and their pug, Squirt. They love Santa Cruz and spend their free time exploring all that our beautiful county has to offer.
Sheree Storm | Chief Development Officer
A marketing professional with over 25 years of experience, Sheree brings a business perspective to the non-profit world in her position as Chief Development Officer. Prior to joining Dientes, she worked at ReSurge International, Second Harvest Food Bank Santa Cruz County, Oracle, Marine Terminals Corporation and Global Business Access. Sheree also worked in Japan promoting U.S. agricultural products to the Japanese market. She holds a Masters of Business Administration in International Business from The George Washington University and a Bachelors of Science in Marketing from California State University, Fresno. She is a 2007 graduate of Focus Agriculture and a 2018 graduate of Leadership for Community Transformation.
Tiffany Turner | Chief Operations Officer
Tiffany joins Dientes with a wealth of knowledge in private business and non-profit organizations, mostly in the public health sector, having previously worked as the Director of Operations for the Center for Oral Health in Pomona, CA. She holds a Masters of Business Administration in Strategy and Leadership, and a Masters of Public Health in Leadership. Tiffany's passion for helping others, coupled with her leadership skills and public health experience, make her a great fit to our organization.
Zandra Hughes | Director of Human Resources
Zandra comes to Dientes as a Human Resources Professional with over 20 years of experience. Her passion is in providing H.R. solutions by helping teams build their infrastructure through compliance, technology and people. She is mission driven and has spent a decade working in the non-profit sector, primarily at Federal Qualified Health Centers. She has a degree in Healthcare Administration and is working towards completing her degree in Human Resource Management. She has two professional Human Resource certifications (PHR, SHRM-CP) and is an active member with the Society of Human Resource Management. Zandra is a local Aptos resident who enjoys spending time with her family, is a voluntary board member for a local women’s triathlon club and is a running coach. Zandra's passion for serving our community makes her a great addition to the team.
Nicole Mello, Commercial Way Clinic
Yari Alvarado, Watsonville Clinic
Maria Alfaro, Beach Flats Clinic
Angelica Cruz, Outreach Clinic
Board of Directors
Ron Japinga, President
Camille Smith-Ballon, Vice President
Michael Moore, Treasurer
Alexandra Navarro, Secretary
Not pictured: Briana Costa
Fiscal Year 20-21 Board Meetings:
July 27, 2020 | August 31, 2020 | September 28, 2020 | October 26, 2020 | November 30, 2020
January 25, 2021 | February 22, 2021 | March 29, 2021 | April 26, 2021 | May 24, 2021 | June 28, 2021