2018 Annual report

Letter From Executive Director

Lisa Wittke Schaffner

Foundation Goals 2019

  • Identifying and closing the gaps in the educational system
  • Improving career and college readiness throughout all schools
  • Decreasing the negative health impacts associated with poverty, especially Pediatric dental health
  • Creating opportunities for the most under-resourced populations to improve their quality of life and career opportunities

The John Jordan Foundation worked through 2018 to fill gaps in our community toward equity in education, health and income stability. The fires of October 2017 compounded some of our biggest challenges and added a mental health focus for even our youngest citizens....

The John Jordan Foundation worked through 2018 to fill gaps in our community toward equity in education, health and income stability. The fires of October 2017 compounded some of our biggest challenges and added a mental health focus for even our youngest citizens.

Our foundation receives a large number of requests each year and filling the most pressing gaps has been a driver for the grants we fund. The last seven years has been a journey of learning, insight and change along with our community. We have developed a broad understanding of health disparities, and the direct link between education, income and health outcomes. Investing in the right programs that can be duplicated and scaled up is a key part of the continued focus to improve quality of life for all members of the community.

This year, we expanded our partnerships with organizations that have established excellent programs and were in need of further funding to enhance and grow the services they offer to their clients. Together we stay focused on impact data to improve reporting and leverage even more resources. In addition, we continued our investments and provided support and leadership on countywide initiatives including Upstream Investments, Health Action, the Violence Prevention Partnership and Cradle to Career frameworks toward collaboration and change. The health outcomes of the most under-resourced children and empowering families to be economically stable will guide our ongoing work. There is a continuing need for focused investments, and we encourage collaboration between entities and are investing based on these considerations.

I look forward to 2019 and working with our partners to achieve greater equity in health, education and income stability for the community. Please contact me with any questions.

Lisa's Signature
Lisa Wittke Schaffner

Who We Are

Lisa Wittke Schaffner

Lisa Wittke Schaffner

Executive Director
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Lisa is the Executive Director of the John Jordan Foundation in Healdsburg, California. The Foundation was established in 2012 and focuses on educational, income stability programs and health access.

Prior to this position she was Chief Executive Officer of the Sonoma County Alliance for seven years, the Alliance is a coalition of business, agriculture, labor and individuals organized to protect private property rights, to encourage a healthy economy.

In 2012, Ms. Schaffner was elected to the Sonoma County Board of Education, serves as President and was re-elected in 2014 and 2018.

Lisa is the Chair of the Redwood Credit Union Board, Co-Chair of Health Action Sonoma County, sits on the boards of the Sonoma County Fair, United Way of the Wine Country, Sonoma County Grape Growers Foundation, Family Justice Center, Social Advocates for Youth, 10,000 Degrees Advisory Board and is on the Career Technical Education Foundation Board. She is the also on the Operational Team Member for Cradle to Career, the Upstream Investments Policy Committee and the policy team for the Violence Prevention Partnership.

Lisa Schaffner was born and raised in Healdsburg, California. She graduated from California State University Sacramento in 1991 with a degree in Government and Journalism.

In 1999 Lisa was elected to Healdsburg City Council. She was Vice-Mayor from December 2002 until December 2003 and again in 2007. She became Mayor of Healdsburg in December of 2003 and again in December 2007, retiring from Council at the end of 2008. In 2010, Lisa as appointed to the Council to serve out an existing vacant term.

Most importantly, Lisa is a mother of two amazing young adults McKenzie, 23 graduated in May 2018, from Johnson and Wales Miami and lives in Charlotte, NC where she has opened her first store and Malloy, 20 attends California State University, Sacramento as a junior.

John Jordan

John Jordan

Founder and Board Chair
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John is Chief Executive Officer of Jordan Vineyard & Winery and co-founder and Chairman of the Board of Labrador OmniMedia. An avid pilot, during college he continued to feed his passion for flying and received his Airline Transport Pilot License at age 23 (minimum age requirement). John is a graduate of Occidental College in Los Angeles and holds a JD from Empire College School of Law. While studying law, John also attended graduate school and received a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of San Francisco.

After passing the California Bar Examination in December 2002, John joined the Santa Rosa-based law firm where he'd worked as a clerk in college, then opened his own private firm in Sonoma County in 2004. John enjoys flying his Piper Cub and fishing for bass on Jordan lake. He also serves as a professor at the Empire College School of Law, and speaks German and Russian.

He shares his hillside home with Labradors he adopted from a local shelter.

Josh Hermsmeyer

Josh Hermsmeyer

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Josh is co-founder and CEO of Labrador OmniMedia and Rottweiler Hardware. With 10 years in the wine industry on the grower and supplier side, Josh's passion lies at the intersection of wine and technology. Josh has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Wine & Spirits, Wines and Vines, The Press Democrat, North Bay Biz and Fast Company Now. He has given talks on social media and marketing at UC Davis, Sonoma State University, The Wine Industry Technology Symposium, The Mendocino Winegrape Commission, and Women for Wine Sense.

Josh has also written for Vineyard & Winery Management, Wines and Vines and co-authored a chapter on direct-to-consumer marketing and Wine 2.0 for Professor Liz Thach's Wine: A Global Business, the authoritative academic text on the wine industry. He served on the Sonoma County Wine Library Associates Board of Directors from 2007-2008, and was elected President for the 2008 year. Josh was trained at UC Davis, where he studied Economics and Winemaking.

He lives at and manages Rebecca's Vineyard, a 17 acre pinot noir vineyard in the Russian River Valley

Program Focus

Youth and Education

The Foundation supports programs that promote child, youth, and family development. As we deepen our commitment to building assets for vulnerable children and families, we focus on all aspects of children’s lives and align with the collaborative work of Cradle to Career. Within this context, youth and education programs address the entire continuum from early childhood education through college and workforce development. The overall goal is to support healthy infant, child, and youth development by mobilizing, strengthening, and aligning systems that affect children’s learning. The strategies are: 1) mobilize youth, families, and communities to inform policies that affect learning and achievement for vulnerable children and youth; and 2) forge partnerships between educational institutions and our community to promote learning, academic performance, and workforce preparation among vulnerable young people.

Income Stability

The Foundation is focused on supporting programs that provide a path for upward mobility and financial security. Widely shared economic prosperity not only improves the lives of low-income families and communities, but it is also good for business and the stability and growth of the economy. To achieve economic security, families need enough income from their jobs or enterprises to provide for their families' basic needs, save for emergencies, and invest in assets such as a home, a new or expanded business, education and training and retirement savings. These assets are critical because they build long-term household stability, allowing families to weather crises and unexpected challenges that are an inevitable part of today's world. The core strategies are loan programs, career training and financial education.

TALLK Sonoma County Office of Education

TALLK Sonoma County Office of Education

TALLK provides preschool teachers with training and coaching in specific strategies for interacting with English learner children to support language acquisition. Overall, the project aims to support language development among preschoolers in their home language and in English, recognizing that skills learned in both languages will support the children’s literacy development.

According to Jenn Guerrero, English learner program coordinator for the Sonoma County Office of Education, TALLK is based on the research-demonstrated best practice of providing adult education through a combination of information sharing followed by coaching.

“In California, 57 percent of children birth through age 5 live in a household where English is not the primary language,” she says. “The TALLK Project provides our Early Childhood Education educators with the the tools and strategies needed to effectively meet the needs of these Dual Language Learners in our preschools.”

Guererro adds that through the generosity of the JJF, TALLK was able to train close to 25 coaches from across the state of CA, thereby enhancing language acquisition for 250-300 preschoolers.

See Full Article »

Santa Rosa Community Health Centers, Pediatric Dental Clinic

Santa Rosa Community Health Centers, Pediatric Dental Clinic

With generous support from The John Jordan Foundation, Santa Rosa Community Health’s Dutton Campus opened in March 2018 on Dutton Avenue, just a few blocks from the Dental Campus that was also funded by the Foundation in 2014. The proximity of these two locations in central Santa Rosa is improving access for patients and increasing awareness of Santa Rosa Community Health (SRCH) as a trusted source for high-quality care.

The October 2017 wildfires added an unforeseen urgency and new meaning to the Dutton Campus opening. Slated to open just five months after the fires that would destroy our largest health center – the Vista Campus – Dutton became the medical home for many of Vista’s 24,000 displaced patients and 130 providers and staff. It also served as an inspiring symbol of resilience and recovery for our entire team and the broader community who gathered with us in June to celebrate its opening. We are also pleased to share that the Dutton Campus won the North Bay Business Journal’s 2017 Top Real Estate Projects award.

In the first ten months, the 24,000 square-foot facility served 11,067 unique patients in almost 40,000 medical, dental, and mental health visits – well beyond our goal of 8,000 patients. 1,777 of those patients received over 3,000 dental visits. Dutton is the first SRCH campus that integrates all three services under one roof, as well as an alternative medicine center with modalities such as acupuncture and massage to support patient healing.

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Mike Hauser Academy

Mike Hauser Algebra Academy

The Mike Hauser Academy convenes students, businesses and teachers, empowering our future workforce to become leaders in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Through this three week program, students get the opportunity to visit various STEM related companies where they interact with engineers and professionals, observe demonstrations, and participate in direct learning experiences and practical applications for STEM concepts.

The Academy is a collaborative effort to increase academic achievement and inspire students to pursue their dreams.

Mike Hauser Academy is offered to all ELL students, as well as additional students determined by each school, entering ninth grade from partner middle school districts.

The John Jordan Foundation has invested as a major program sponsor for the last six years.

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VOICES’ mission is to empower underserved youth by utilizing holistic services throughout their transition from the foster care system, while building a loving community and establishing a solid foundation for a healthy future. At the core of the VOICES program are youth-led strategies designed to address the independent living, housing, education, employment, and wellness needs of transition-age youth.

Since opening its doors in 2009, VOICES Sonoma has supported thousands of youth as they break the cycle of poverty and despair and grow into healthy, contributing members of our community.

Over the last year, support from the John Jordan Foundation has enabled VOICES’ success, evidenced by excellent progress made towards the program’s proposed goals. Following is a summary of those goals and the achieved results.

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Other Project Investments

Overall Impact

Our goal at JJF has always been to create lasting impact. Each year we are able to create a better future. These are just some of the ways we achieved that goal in 2018 alone.
2017 Annual Report



John Jordan Foundation has participated in over 100 events, just in 2018!



Our investments have directly helped 100K+ students and their families.



Our Teacher’s Wishes program helped 106 schools, 34 districts and independent schools.



We invested with 134 schools, organizations and programs for under-resourced families and individuals.