Receptionist / Administrative Assistant
Finance & Human Resources
Director of Finance & Human Resources
CPA, CGMA (Consultant)
Director of Resource Development
Director of Programs
Instructor, Orientation & Mobility
Core Skills Program Manager
IT / Program Assistant
Instructor, Independent Living Skills
Instructor, Adaptive Technology
Instructor, Independent Living Skills and Braille Literacy
Access News and Technology Coordinator
Instructor, Adaptive Technology
Senior IMPACT Project
Director of Senior Programs
Manager of Senior Programs
CareersPLUS Program Coordinator
Low Vision Clinic
Director of Clinical Services & Occupational Therapist
Senior Low Vision Clinic Assistant
Low Vision Clinic Assistant
Society for the Blind’s Board of Directors
Volunteers With A Vision
A volunteer Board of Directors governs Society for the Blind. Society for the Blind seeks out Board members that bring the necessary skills and expertise to inform our strategic decisions, ensure financial responsibility and accountability, and to lead the organization in realizing its mission. At least one-third of our board members are blind or low vision.
Janice Walth, President
See No Limits
Janice Walth joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in July 2013.
Janice has been a world class competitive archer for the past eight years but has been blind since childhood with Retinitis Pigmentosa or R.P., a degenerative condition of the retina. Janice has a bachelor’s degree in Assistive Technology. She is an Independent Service Provider for the Department of Rehabilitation and offers technology support to individuals who are blind throughout the San Joaquin Valley.
Janice competed in the 2007 Paralympic Archery World Championships in Korea winning the overall silver medal for the United States (men’s and women’s), while setting five women’s world records. Janice continues to complete world-wide.
Tracy Kinoshita, Vice President
Tracy Kinoshita joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in September 2016.
Tracy retired in July 2015 after a nearly 20 year career in banking. After spending much of her career in retail branch management she transitioned to Risk Management and Operations in 2008. As VP/Operation Controls Manager she was responsible for physical security; loss prevention; fraud investigations; legalities; retail branch support; and Bank Secrecy Act policy, procedure and compliance. Currently, in additional to her work with Society for the Blind, Tracy and her husband Steve coach Cross Country and Track & Field at Folsom High School, and assists with programs/events for the United States Association of Blind Athletes. Tracy’s son Michael, who has a rod-cone dystrophy, sparked her passion for advocacy for those who are blind and low vision.
Dawn Cornelius, Immediate Past President
Cornelius & Davini LLP
Dawn Cornelius has been a member of the Society for the Blind Board of Directors since July 2010.
Dawn is a partner at Cornelius & Davini LLP, a local CPA firm. She specializes in income tax preparation and consulting, and litigation support services. Dawn has an undergraduate degree in Economics from UC San Diego and an MBA and Master’s in Accounting from the University of Washington.
Allison Otto, Secretary
Allison Otto joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in September 2007.
A third-generation member of the family business, Allison joined the Otto Construction team as its marketing director in 2000. Currently, she is Executive Vice President.
Allison graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in business management and earned her Certificate in Construction Management from UC Davis.
Les Passuello, Treasurer
Les Passuello joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in March 2015.
Les is the Senior Vice President of Finance for VSP Global, the largest and only not-for-profit vision benefits company in the U.S., serving over 70 million members nationwide. He has worked in various positions at VSP for over 20 years, and previously worked in banking, insurance, and retail.
Les is a CPA and has an undergraduate degree in Accounting from Indiana State University and an MBA from the University of Texas at Arlington. He has previously served on the Board of Directors for Make-A-Wish and Orangevale Rotary Club.
William E. Carter Co., Inc.
William (Bill) Carter joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in September 2007.
Bill is owner of the William E. Carter Company, a full service design/build residential/commercial remodeling firm, serving the greater Sacramento area since 1976. He has been a pioneer in the industry receiving many accolades and design awards including national, regional and local recognition.
Stephen M. Lerner
California Bureau of Real Estate, Sacramento
Steve Lerner re-joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in May 2014. He previously served on the board from 2003 through 2012, serving as Board President from 2004 through 2008.
Steve obtained his Juris Doctor degree from the University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law. Steve was appointed Assistant Commissioner of Legal Affairs at the California Bureau of Real Estate by Governor Brown Jr. in November 2015. Prior to this appointment, Steve served as Deputy Attorney General in the Natural Resources Law Section of the California Attorney General’s Office. Steve also worked in private practice for 16 years, including 10 years at McDonough, Holland & Allen.
Steve is a 2009 graduate of the Sacramento Metro Chamber’s Leadership Program and served on the program’s Alumni Board for several years.
Witnessing his grandmother lose her sight because of diabetes, Steve is passionate about Society’s mission to empower individuals living with low vision or blindness to discover, develop and achieve their full potential.
First Northern Bank
Michelle Machado joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in July 2018.
Michelle is Vice President/Commercial Loan Officer with First Northern Bank, a locally based independent community bank specializing in relationship banking. Michelle has worked in the banking industry in the Sacramento area for 20 years.
Michelle has an undergraduate degree in Finance from California State University Sacramento. She is currently attending Pacific Coast Banking School, a graduate-level management education program focused on the financial services industry, and will graduate with a leadership certificate in September 2019.
Mark J. Mannis, M.D.
UC Davis Health System Eye Center
Dr. Mark Mannis joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in July 2011.
Dr. Mannis is Professor and Chair of Ophthalmology for the UC Davis Health System Eye Center specializing in corneal transplantation and external diseases of the eye. He received his medical degree from University of Florida College of Medicine and has been in practice for 33 years.
Dr. Mannis has pioneered the use of the Implantable Macular Telescope (IMT) to restore central vision for patients with Age-Related Macular Degeneration at the UC Davis Eye Center.
Bryce McAnally joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in March 2010.
Bryce is the Director of Media and Programs for Kaiser Permanente. He has an undergraduate degree in Communication Design from California State University-Chico and an MBA in Marketing and Organizational Behavior from California State University-Sacramento.
Marlene Mourtzikos joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in January 2017.
Since joining Delta Gamma Fraternity in college, Marlene has been giving time to organizations that reflect Delta Gamma’s philanthropic vision of Service for Sight. She is especially passionate about serving our veterans and active duty men and women who are blind or have low vision, and has volunteered with the VA Long Beach Healthcare System’s Blind Rehabilitation Center since 2012. With over 18 years of retail and online industry experience spanning E-Commerce, catalog, and brick-and-mortar channels, she is currently a freelance internet retail consultant. Marlene holds a B.A. in Economics and Political Science, cum laude, from the University of Rochester and a J.D./M.B.A. from Southern Methodist University.
Dr. Paul Peterson
Peterson Chiropractic Corporation
Dr. Paul Peterson rejoined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in January 2014. He previously served on the board from 1998-2011.
Although Dr. Peterson grew up with a macular degeneration which he inherited and was diagnosed with at the age of six, his vision has never slowed him down. Dr. Peterson has operated the Peterson Chiropractic Clinic in Sacramento for the past 37 years. He graduated as valedictorian from Palmer College of Chiropractic where he went on to become a member of the faculty. While teaching at Palmer, he was the team doctor for the rugby football team. Dr. Peterson has also been a member of the Palmer College of Chiropractic Board of Trustees for the past 33 years.
Steve Strong re-joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in July 2018. He previously served on the board from 2011-2012.
Steve started his career in San Francisco for the Champion Papers and Field Ernst Envelope Company. In 1965, he was transferred to Sacramento where he opened a sales office, and six years later, he opened his own printing business which he operated for more than four decades and included a second office in Reno, NV.
Steve has been actively involved in many organizations throughout the years. He has served on the board of Society for the Blind, Ducks Unlimited, Downtown Sacramento Rotary Club, The Sutter Club, Westminster Memorial Park, Valley Hi Country Club, First Tee of Greater Sacramento, and Grandfather’s Club of America.
Steve has been married for 55 years, has three children, five grandchildren and a great grandson. He is now retired and eagerly looking forward to returning and serving on the board of Society for the Blind once again.
Jeff Thom joined the Society for the Blind Board of Directors in September 2016.
Jeff Thom graduated from Stanford Law School in 1978, after obtaining a bachelors degree in political science from Willamette University. Jeff worked as an attorney for the California Legislature for 30 years. He is currently the immediate past president of the California Council of the Blind and first vice president of the American Council of the Blind. He has served in a variety of blindness-related capacities on the national, state, and local level and is currently chair of the Sacramento Regional Transit District Mobility Advisory Council. He is married, and is a father and grandfather. Jeff loves to read and watch sports.