“The arrival of these five new trustees heralds fresh thinking and energy as Whittier builds momentum during this academic year and beyond,” said Interim President Kristine Dillon '73. “Please join me in welcoming these accomplished alumni to their important service in support of Whittier College.”
Meet the New Board Members
Tiffany Dean ’97 is a consultant on board governance in the nonprofit and higher education sectors.
Earlier in her career, at AGB Consulting, Dean was responsible for developing and delivering comprehensive programs and services for the boards of public foundations and their CEOs to support their governance responsibilities and fiduciary duties. At Oregon State University Foundation, she served as corporate secretary, maintaining corporate records and advising on policy and procedural matters, governance, and communications about the board.
Richard Gilchrist ’68 returns to the Whittier Board of Trustees, which he previously chaired from 2003 to 2011. Gilchrist brings unique insight into Whittier’s investment activities thanks to extensive experience in the real estate industry, having served as an executive officer of several real estate investment trusts (REITs). He currently serves as a director for Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust and Chairman of the Board of Spirit Realty Capital.
Gilchrist is also a member of the Advisory Board of the University of California, Los Angeles Law School, where he earned a J.D. in 1971.
Lila Laviano ’03 streamlines the affordable housing development process by ensuring regulatory compliance, setting outcome-driven project goals, maximizing cost efficiencies, and expediting timelines.
Since graduating from Whittier, Laviano has accrued more than 20 years of work in real estate development and asset management focused on affordable housing in California. Laviano has brought more than 25,000 affordable housing units into compliance within the City of Los Angeles and provided executive oversight for over $500 million in assets. In 2010, she started a consulting and private real estate development company and pivoted to a private capital financial model deployed within Housing for Us All and Erna Enterprises.
Lisabeth Marziello ’87 and her husband, Joe Marziello ’86, are President-Chief Executive Officers of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Philadelphia. The Marziellos lead an organization that employs over 220 people at 22 locations.
Since coming to Philadelphia, the Marziellos have raised more than $120 million in revenue to support programming, operations, and capital investment.
They launched the Call-to-Action Literacy Initiative, which now reaches over 1,400 youth at 15 Clubs throughout Philadelphia, and STEM learning Labs to provide young people with 21st-century skills.
Dr. Raquel Torres-Retana ’91 is an educator with over 30 years of experience in various collegiate settings.
A daughter of Mexican immigrants, Torres-Retana has a passion for educational equity and social justice rooted in her San Gabriel Valley working-class upbringing. A first-generation college student, Torres-Retana graduated from Whittier, then earned a master's in Public Administration from CSU-Dominguez Hills and an Ed.D. from the USC Rossier School of Education.
In 2015, Torres-Retana began her current appointment as a dean at Pasadena City College. She is also an adjunct assistant professor at the USC Rossier School of Education.
Married with three adult children, she lives in the Los Angeles area.