Mission, Vision, Values
The Casa Foundation develops, administers and disburses philanthropic resources for the benefit of Residents of Casa de las Campanas. It provides funding for Resident projects, programs and services. Foundation endowment funds provide perpetual support for health and fitness, music and art, transportation, employee scholarships, resident activities and other projects that improve Resident well-being.
Board of Directors
The Foundation Board of Directors consists of five un-paid volunteer members. Three of the members must also serve on the board of the Casa de las Campanas Life Plan Community. The other two members must be residents in good standing at Casa de las Campanas. Directors may serve three consecutive two-year terms.
Kathy Lord | Chair
Katherine was elected to the board in December 2014. She currently serves as the Casa board secretary, vice chair of the Casa Foundation board of directors, and is a member of the marketing & community outreach and governance committees. She has served as chair of the health and wellness committee. Katherine has more than 40 years’ experience, 35 in California alone, as a licensed, practicing architect specializing in educational facilities (university, community college, and K-12) and health care and retirement projects. Katherine received her Bachelor of Arts with a major in architecture and master’s of architecture degrees from Washington University in St. Louis. Katherine is a principal and majority owner of Lord Architecture, Inc., located in Rancho Bernardo. She has been a member of the American Institute of Architects for 35 years and is currently the AIA/San Diego Chapter’s president. She is also a member of the USGBC/SD, the Collaborative for High Performance Schools, the Coalition for Adequate School Housing (CASH), and an advisory board member of the New School of Architecture.
Steve Spear| Vice Chair
Steve was elected to the board in December 2013. He currently serves as chair of the marketing & community outreach committee, and is a member of the governance committee, and the planning & construction committee, and the Casa Foundation board. He received his Bachelor of Arts from The Colorado College, a Master of Science from the University of Southern California, a Master of Arts from San Diego State University, and a Ph.D. from the University of California, Riverside. Steve retired after 39 years as a professor at Palomar College and continues to serve on the Palomar College health benefits committee. During his tenure at Palomar College, he served on the budget committee, strategic planning committee, and was president of the faculty senate and chairman of the earth sciences department. He was an active participant in the design and planning for the new natural sciences building and planetarium.
Vernon Pertelle | Secretary
Vernon Pertelle was elected to the Board in 2021. He is the President and CEO of StraitHealth. He is also the President and Executive Director of Pulmonary Horizons, which provides national, regional, local and organization-specific education programs designed to improve the overall diagnosis, treatment and management of patients with COPD. He is a health care executive with significant operations, strategy, and financial management experience in the continuum of care, including hospital & health systems, post-acute care, HMO benefit administration, Home Medical Equipment (HME), and Durable Medical Equipment (DME) providers and manufacturers. He is an author with original work including manuscripts, abstracts, contributions, books and has served as a reviewer for peer-reviewed healthcare journals. He is a speaker at the national and international respiratory professional societies and has presented clinical importance topics to improve patient care.
Carol was born & raised in Alhambra, California. She is a So Cal woman through and through - 3 generations! She attended Mt. San Antonio Jr. College, Cal State University at Long Beach, many a night school & summer classes. She received her Master's degree from Chapman University. After Jr. College, she worked for the City of Monterey Park and then the City of Montebello. Carol later attended the L.A. Police Academy after which she worked in the detective division of the Montebello Police Department where some of her work involved counseling youngsters. After graduating from Cal State at Long Beach, she settled in Newport Beach and for 40 years lived on Balboa Peninsula Point. For 31 of those years she taught at Newport Elementary School right on the beach on Balboa Peninsula. Carol eventually lived just above Laguna Beach in what became Laguna Niguel. She bred and raised dressage & evening horses for many years. From raw land, she developed a 23-acre ranch at 3,200’ (Twin Oaks) in the southern part of Sierra foothills. This was her get away for 18 years. It was a difficult-but-wise decision to move to Casa in 2014. Carol settled into a carefree life of exploring the trails and wildlife in the open lands around Casa. She enjoys growing many veggies & even cotton in Casa’s garden. Carol facilitated the development of our current vegetable garden, served on the Casa Foundation and Scholarship Committee for many years and lately also on the Building Committee.
Resident Garry Butterfield, who serves as the Chair of the Foundation Advisory Committee, joined the Foundation Board of Directors in January of 2020. He currently co-chairs the Covenant Group at Casa and has also served on the Finance, Activities, and Historical committees. Before retirement Garry served as the General Manager of the Sweetwater Authority in Chula Vista from 1978 – 1992. In the larger community, Garry has served as the Chairman of the San Diego Regional Quality Control Board, the Vice-Chair of the San Diego Parks and Recreation Commission, and the Vice-Chair of the San Diego County Public Works Agency Advisory Board.
Jim Eckel, CFP | Director of Philanthropy
As the Director of Philanthropy, Jim provides fundraising for the Casa Foundation. He is a Certified Financial Planner(CFP) and has been working in the financial and charitable fields for over 30 years. Prior to the Casa Foundation, he was with the USS Midway Museum, The Heritage Museum of Orange County, and Scholars Hope Foundation in development and consultative roles.
Foundation Advisory Committee
The Foundation Advisory Committee is a committee of 8 - 10 residents who provide input and recommendations to the Foundation Board of Directors on funding needs, policy, programs, resident concerns, etc. They are an invaluable support structure and work directly with Jim Eckel, our Director of Philanthropy, to advance the Foundation’s mission. This committee operates on a functional level by disseminating information about the Foundation to residents through printed material, educational programs and donor recognition events.
- Garry Butterfield - Chair
- Jim Eckel - Vice Chair
- Dot Koerner
- Carol Rhoades
- Val Murphy
- Sonny Googins
- Benita Page
- Mike Stelman
- Tom Lee
- Sue Cagni
- Dottie Risheberger