WHO WE ARE

About Pathways

Pathways to Independence was founded in 1991 by Dave and Joyce Bishop and received 501(c)(3) status as a Public Charity in February, 1994.   Pathways’ initial goal was to help a young woman named Monica, get advanced education and achieve self-sufficiency. Monica was the product of a dysfunctional alcoholic family and at age 19 had a 2 year-old daughter and no support. With Pathways’ help, Monica was able to get advanced training and a full-time job with health benefits for her and her daughter. 

Pathways to Independence is the inspiration and avenue for individual empowerment, personal healing and scholastic growth.

The mission of Pathways to Independence is to transform the lives of disadvantaged single young women through education, therapy, mentoring, housing, and healthcare, to break the cycle of poverty and abuse.

Presently, Pathways has 14 Board Members and 300+ volunteers collaborating to execute our mission.

The Board

Our active and involved Board of Directors, comprised of area professionals including two Pathways’ graduates, is charged with the financial and managerial oversight of our operations. We are extremely fortunate to have such a committed group at the helm of our organization. No Board Members receive any compensation whatsoever.

2022 MOTTO

United in Mission

(Pictured) Pathways board and staff at the April 2022 retreat.

Our Current Board Members

Raymond Cervantez

Board Chair

Lindsay Mais

Treasurer

Nikki Harris

M.A., LMFT
Secretary

Lisa Fluke

Anita Beltran

Joe Dzida

Jerry Green

Sharon Dickson

LCSW

Christina Stricklin

Pathways Graduate

Sylvia Hendron

Leslie Wulff

Tracey Hutton

Our Current Staff Members

Diana Hill

Interim Executive Director

Diana has focused her career on real estate, education, and investing.

Lisa Mais

Fund Development Officer

Lisa has over 25 years of non-profit and fundraising experience with Pathways to Independence.

Eydie Pasicel

Program Director

A graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Development and a minor in Psychology.

Renee Shepherd

Development Director

Renee is a fundraising professional with over 15 years of experience in nonprofit development.

Kitty Barlow

Controller

Kitty owns and operates her own Accountancy.  She is a Certified Return Tax Preparer, licensed by the State of California.

Cindy Gillis

Administrative Assistant

Cindy has been involved in the Long Beach nonprofit community since 1990.

Franc Freeman

Apartment Manager

Coming Soon

Vanessa Estevez

Apartment Manager

Coming Soon

Friends of Pathways

In 1996, Pathways to Independence was struggling financially, and ready to close its doors. Along came a small group of can-do women who formed “Friends of Pathways” (FOP) to raise money for Pathways to Independence (PTI).

We started with a bang, hosting a progressive dinner party in Park Estates in October of 1996. The generosity of that first group of guests enabled 12 students to begin their journey on the path to Independence. We have grown from a gathering of a handful of Friends to a committee of over 100; with over 650 guests in attendance each year. 2019 was a banner year for our Fundraising event – over $750,000 was raised at our “Fiesta  in the Park” event.

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Diana Hill

Diana’s career has been in real estate investing and education.  She owned and operated a national seminar firm for 18 years, was a Director of Education at Online Trading Academy for 14 years, and now is privileged to be Interim Executive Director for Pathways to Independence. Diana has been a community leader for over 25 years in Los Alamitos and the greater Orange County area. She is currently a governing board member of the Los Alamitos School District among other volunteer positions. Diana has been associated with Pathway since 2007 and has served as a mentor, coordinator, and board member. Diana is passionate about making a difference in the lives of those who have demonstrated a desire to grow and break the negative cycles in their lives. She is a leader who serves, inspires, and always reaches for audacious goals.  

Lisa Mais

Lisa Mais, Fund Development Officer has over 25 years of non-profit and fundraising experience with Pathways to Independence. She is driven by a passion for service, collaboration, and a desire to have a positive impact on the world. Her successful track record of grant writing, donor development, and fundraising events brings a focused energy to the Pathways team as the organization grows.

Eydie Pasicel

Eydie graduated from California State University, Long Beach where she received a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Development and a minor in Psychology. She has worked with survivors of violence since 2010 and has led a myriad of trainings to service providers on how to create spaces that would best support a survivor’s healing journey. Eydie has completed trainings centered on Racial Equity and Restorative Justice and she is a proud alum of the Leadership Long Beach Institute. When Eydie is not at work you can find her riding her bike, dancing with her partner, breaking bread with friends, or just hanging out with her plants.

Renee Shepherd

 Renee Shepherd is a fundraising professional with over 15 years of experience in nonprofit development. She has a background in donor relations, special events, , grant writing, corporate giving and community engagement. Renee has served as both fundraiser and board member for several nonprofit organizations in Los Angeles and Las Vegas. She is a third generation South Bay resident and active in her community of Carson. 

Kitty Barlow

Kitty owns and operates her own Accountancy.  She is a Certified Return Tax Preparer, licensed by the State of California. She became involved with Pathways in 2009. She has been a mentor, and has served on The Board.  She shares her passion for the Pathways mission even more than her passion for numbers. “I can not think of a better organization to work for”, “It is, and will continue to be my honor to serve this wonderful organization”.

Cindy Gillis

Cindy has been involved in the Long Beach nonprofit community since 1990. She has held leadership positions in Junior League, Assistance League of Long Beach and her son’s school’s PTAs in addition to many committee positions in various local organizations. Cindy joined Pathways to Independence as a volunteer in 2006 and became an employee in 2010. She is passionate about the opportunities that Pathways affords their clients and is excited to be a part of the team that supports their growth.