OUR BOARD

Whether it’s raising funds or delivering vitamins to families in need, we rely on collaboration to achieve our mission. Our distinguished board members bring invaluable experience from the corporate, academic, and nonprofit worlds to inform and enhance our efforts.


Board of Directors

Peter Van Stolk
Peter Van Stolk Board Chair
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: yes

Peter is CEO of Sustainable Produce Urban Delivery (SPUD.com).

As founder of Jones Soda Company® in 1996, Peter served as CEO and Chairman through 2007. Jones Soda was one of the first consumer branded companies recognizing the potential of Social Media to create an emotional connection with its consumers.

Peter believes in challenging the status quo and has been recognized in publications such as The New York Times®, CNN®, Wall Street Journal®, Fast Company™, and People Magazine®. He has received numerous business awards including Price, Waterhouse, Coopers’ 40 under 40, Brand Week’s Top 100 Marketer, and chosen as one of Canada’s Top One Hundred Young Canadians by MacLean’s Magazine®.

Outside of SPUD, Peter has built four schools and provided countless donations to organizations that focus on women and children issues and he loves to spend time in the mountains; biking, and skiing.

Robert Parker
Robert Parker Secretary
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: no

Rob began his career with Arthur Anderson and KPMG, both global CPA firms. He then moved to private industry, holding the position of worldwide CFO for companies including Euro RSCG, Double-Click, and Lowe Partners. He is a member of Beta Gamma Sigma.

Rob’s unique experience working for marketing agencies in a financial role has proven exceedingly useful to Vitamin Angels, allowing him to wear many hats for the organization. Currently Rob holds the position of Chief Operating Officer for VA, though one title doesn’t seem to capture the scope of his involvement.

Rob splits time between New Jersey and his favorite office team in Santa Barbara.

Howard B. Schiffer
Howard B. Schiffer President and Founder
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: no

Howard started his career as a midwife, learning about the importance of prenatal nutrition for maternal and child health.

After a successful career in the natural foods industry developing quality products and turning them into best sellers through innovative marketing and promotions, Howard founded Vitamin Angels in 1994.

Through his extraordinary leadership of the organization, Howard has received numerous honors and awards including a Lifetime Achievement Award, a Global Humanitarian Award, and Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition.

Howard truly believes every child deserves the chance to lead a full and healthy life. Howard is the author of three books. He has three children and lives with his wife in Santa Barbara, California.

Read the Founder's Story.

Clayton A. Ajello DRPH, MPH
Clayton A. Ajello DRPH, MPH
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  • Independent voting member: no

Clayton is an epidemiologist, entrepreneur, and executive who lead or collaborated with experts in 30+ countries. He provides evidence-based, strategic, and operational advice to nonprofit organizations major transitions. Clayton specializes in advising non-profit organizations seeking to bring about innovative, sustainable, high impact public health initiatives in low- and medium-resource settings.

Clayton has consulted for governments, bi-lateral aid agencies, and multi-lateral organizations with strategic services pertaining to analysis, planning, and implementation of primary healthcare systems in low resource settings. He served as vice president for international programs at the Johns Hopkins University and JHPIEGO, as well as on the faculty of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Upon returning to the private sector, Clayton founded the for-profit company LearnWare International Corporation. Since selling the company, Clayton has spent a decade as managing partner of inlexo. 

Brian Wood
Brian Wood
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Brian Wood is a Managing Director in the Consumer Investment Banking Group of Imperial Capital, based in the Los Angeles office. Brian has over 15 years of providing a broad range of corporate finance advisory services including mergers and acquisitions, private and public capital raising, debt private placements, high yield and strategic advisory. Prior to joining Imperial Capital, Brian was a Managing Director at The Mercanti Group, a M&A and capital markets advisory firm exclusively focused on the Branded Consumer sector. Before Mercanti, he worked for Seidler Capital where he focused on Branded Consumer companies with a particular specialization in the Health, Wellness & Fitness category.  Brian received a BA in Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame and an MBA from Georgetown University. To stay healthy, Brian participates in numerous fitness and sports activities including volleyball, skiing, basketball and running (including Spartan races, Mud runs and Ragnar relays).

"I was inspired to join Vitamin Angels because I wanted to make a real difference in improving and saving lives of women and children. More than any other organization I’ve seen, Vitamin Angels [is] making an impact for those that are most often ignored. I am extremely proud to be a part of such an important mission with such an exceptional group of people."

Michelle Brooks
Michelle Brooks
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: yes

Michelle is a managing principal at Arlon Group, a food and agriculture investment firm that invests across the food supply chain. At Arlon, Michelle manages Arlon’s North American investment activities which are focused on investing in middle-market companies in the United States, the largest food and agriculture market in the world.

Michelle was previously a principal with Weston Presidio, a middle-market private equity firm with $3.3B in AUM. She worked for Weston Presidio from 1999 to 2010 and was responsible for leading due diligence and investment execution in a variety of sectors, including food and beverage and restaurants. Michelle has served on the board of directors of numerous private companies and is currently a board member for Door to Door Organics, HMR Foods, and Wholesome Sweeteners.

Michelle received her MBA with distinction from Harvard Business School and an AB in government from Harvard University.

What inspired you to join Vitamin Angels? Vitamin Angels' commitment to helping the neediest in a profound and fundamental way moved me to get involved. Good nutrition is everyone's most basic need and the foundation for everything we want for children and their families.

How do you like to stay healthy? I care about staying healthy for myself and for my family, so I try to eat well, stay active and create space for mental health in my life.

Tom Tolworthy
Tom Tolworthy
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  • Independent voting member: yes

Tom is the President and CEO of Twinlab Corporation. He is responsible for establishing overall business strategy for growth and profitability, as well as setting marketing direction for brand management.

Tom is committed to providing the foundational leadership required to bring Twinlab to the forefront of serving the dietary supplement industry with sound cultural participation and social responsibility. He has joined Vitamin Angels on trips to the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Kenya to observe the delivery of vital nutrition to hundreds of children and families in need.

Prior to joining Twinlab in 2011, Tom served as CEO at The Vitamin Shoppe, where he introduced Vitamin Angels as a charitable initiative and spearheaded the first annual Vitamin Angels Golf Outing resulting in a donation of more than $250,000. Before joining The Vitamin Shoppe, Tom spent eleven years at Barnes & Noble in various positions, leaving there as President.

Joanne M. Gray
Joanne M. Gray
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: yes

Joanne is a partner at Goodwin Procter, LLP. She is Co-Chair of Goodwin Proctor's Food Industry Group and is a partner in the firm's Litigation Department.

Joanne helps her clients develop strategies for building consumer brands while complying with increasingly complex regulatory requirements. She advises on risk management, public, relations, crisis management issues, as well as litigation avoidance counseling and due diligence reviews for products or companies in the food, supplement, drug, and device industries.

Joanne has held a number of leadership roles for The American Bar Association. She is the current national co-chair of the ABA's Food and Supplements Group. Joanne has spoken nationally and been published extensively over the course of her career. She is a graduate of The College of The Holy Cross and Fordham University's School of Law.

Joanne has devoted much of her career to advising nonprofits and has served on a number of boards. She has been listed in Who's Who in the Law, New York Super Lawyers, and Legal 500.

Michelle Goolsby
Michelle Goolsby
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: yes

Michelle served as Executive Vice President, General Counsel, and Chief Administrative Officer for Dean Foods Company for over a decade. Prior to that, Michelle spent over 13 years practicing law with two major Texas law firms, focusing primarily on corporate, securities and capital markets transactions. 

Currently, Michelle provides advisory services, including executive coaching and leadership development, and training and development programs, to for-profit and nonprofit organizations.

Michelle is a partner and a member of the Investment Committee of Greenmont Capital Partners, member of the Board of Directors of The Organic Center and of Vitamin Angels, a Trustee of The University of Texas Law School Foundation, and a Founding Member of the Center for Women in Law.

She received her M.A. from the Simmons School of Education and Human Development at Southern Methodist University, her J.D. from The University of Texas School of Law, and her B.B.A. - Accounting from The University of Texas at Austin.  

Dr. Robert Black
Dr. Robert Black
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: yes

Robert (Bob) E. Black, M.D., M.P.H. is the Professor and Director of the Institute for International Programs in the Department of International Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland. Bob is trained in medicine, infectious diseases and epidemiology. He served as an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and at institutions in Bangladesh and Peru on research related to childhood infectious diseases and nutrition. Bob’s current research includes field trials of vaccines, micronutrients and other nutritional interventions, effectiveness studies of health programs, and evaluation of preventive and curative health services in low- and middle-income countries. His other interests are the use of evidence in guiding policy and programs, including estimates of burden of disease, and the strengthening of public health training. He has more than 600 scientific journal publications and is co-editor of the textbook “Global Health.”  

"My career has [focused on] generating evidence on how vitamin and mineral supplements can make a difference in the lives of women and children. My involvement with Vitamin Angels helps get that evidence into programs around the world that directly benefit millions of people."

Board of Advisors

Tom Meriam
Tom Meriam
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

"Listening to Howard Schiffer describe the difficulties facing so many of the world’s children, and the hope that comes from something simple--yet so effective--as two doses of vitamin A per year, [inspired me to join Vitamin Angels]."

Sara Snow
Sara Snow
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Sara Snow is a natural health expert, a speaker, spokesperson, author and TV host.  As host of two TV series for the Discovery Networks, regular appearances on outlets including CNN, Good Morning America, CBS Early Show, New York Times, Lucky Magazine, Better Homes and Gardens and many others, Sara educates, coaches, motivates on healthy living.   Ms Snow is also co-founder of a healthy-materials fashion line called hide&cheek that uses certified organic seaweed to create skin nourishing garments.  Snow sits on the board of advisors for Thrive Market and the global non-profit, Vitamin Angels.

What inspired you to join Vitamin Angels?

I am a mom of two small girls but I'm one of the lucky ones who can afford healthy food and other necessities to keep them well.  Who does my heart break for?  Those mothers who can not.  That is why I joined the board of Vitamin Angels.  To help bring the power of life-saving vitamins to children in need.

How do you like to stay healthy?

My method of staying healthy is quite simple.  I eat healthy foods (fresh, fewer ingredients, lower in sugars) and I am active in some way every single day.  And because I also believe that happy makes you healthy, I look at my family and find joy in my life every day.  

Angela Kelly
Angela Kelly
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Angela Kelly is the President of Nutrivation and an active board member for Vitamin Angels serving the Board of Advisors, www.vitaminangels.org.  She also serves in many additional volunteer positions within industry organizations, such as NIA-West and the Open Invitational Golf Tournament.

Angela received her BS degree in Communications in 2000 from Lewis State Clark College and has utilized her exceptional interpersonal skills to establish and maintain strong relationships with customers and associates in the Nutraceutical industry. Angela has a proven ability to exceed her client's expectations and deliver solutions to their formulation obstacles and as a result, she has developed a loyal customer base. She brings both experience and enthusiasm to the industry. Her natural ability to understand her others needs partnered with Vitamin Angels charitable causes makes for a winning combination that will help ensure the success of Nutrivation well into the future.

"After visiting Peru to see the work of Vitamin Angels first hand, I felt inspired to assist Vitamin Angels in any way I could. When you speak to the mothers who no longer worry if their children will survive the year, you search your soul trying to find ways you can help Vitamin Angels reach more children. You can hear about the number of children reached by the dedication of Howard and Vitamin Angels, but when you see a Peruvian mother running to our van while it’s bumbling down a pothole-ridden road, just to receive a bottle of prenatal vitamins, you realize how important the mission of Vitamin Angels is. When you hear about the millions of children served by Vitamin Angels and then see these children playing, laughing, and learning, your heart knows the world has become a better place because of Vitamin Angels. Why wouldn't you want to join the team of Vitamin Angels after experiencing this? It was a no-brainer."

Doug Jones
Doug Jones
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Doug is the Senior Vice President, Merchandising for The Vitamin Shoppe. Prior to taking over the Merchandising function, Doug was the Vice President of Supply Chain Management for The Vitamin Shoppe. He joined the company in 1998 as the Director of Planning and Analysis. During his tenure at The Vitamin Shoppe he has held positions of increasing seniority including responsibility for the Distribution Center, logistics, packaging, customer service departments, Inventory Management, Sourcing, Product Development and Purchasing teams.

Prior to joining The Vitamin Shoppe, Doug worked at Tiffany & Co. as the Project Director of Planning and Analysis where he led major change initiatives. Before Tiffany & Co., Doug was a Financial Analyst with Kmart Fashions.

Doug holds a degree in Finance from The American University in Washington, D.C. He also has a specialization in Japanese and Real Estate.

"I played with 3-year-old Vilma on the dry mud outside of her home in Guatemala. Her brittle, brown hair, with tinges of orange from vitamin A deficiency, brushed my face as a breeze floated by. I smiled, realizing in that moment that her life changed course -- because that day, she received her first dose of vitamin A. I love Vitamin Angels because of what they are doing for Vilma and for millions of other children that I will never meet."

Dave Brubaker
Dave Brubaker
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Dave is currently Chief Executive Officer of NutraGenetics, LLC, and CEO and Founder of HealthWell Ventures, LLC.

Previously, Dave founded and was Chairman of Leiner Health, and co-founded the Feeling Fine Company.

Dave is a former University of Southern California Trustee, past President of the USC Alumni Association, past Chairman of the Board of the USC Norris Cancer Hospital, and a member of the USC Skull and Dagger Honor Society. He is a member of the Chancellor’s Cabinet at Arkansas State University and the President’s Cabinet and Foundation Board of Directors at the University of North Alabama.

He is an original member of the Council for Responsible Nutrition. Dave serves as Chairman of the advisory committee for the Coby Brubaker Children’s Foundation. He also served as a Board Member for Operation USA.

Dave holds a B.S. and M.B.A. from the University of Southern California, Marshall Business School. 

Luis N. Pacheco, MD, FAACP
Luis N. Pacheco, MD, FAACP
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Dr. Luis Pacheco is an Emmy Award winning Family Physician who is Board Certified in Family Medicine, has received a CAQ in Sports Medicine, and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Medicine. Luis received an Emmy Award and ‘Golden Mike’ for his work on Spanish-language television with Univision. Formerly the Director of Pre-Doctoral Education for the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Southern California, USC-Keck School of Medicine, Luis is one of the most well-known and trusted physicians in the US Hispanic Community today. He has received numerous awards and recognition.

Luis received his B.A. in Biology from Columbia University in New York, his M.D. from Central University in Puerto Rico with an emphasis on Tropical Medicine and performed his clinical clerkships at Harvard, Tufts, and Boston Universities in Boston. He completed his Internship and Residency in Family Medicine at USC and was elected Chief Resident his senior year.

Samantha Prasad
Samantha Prasad
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Samantha is a partner in the tax group at Minden Gross LLP, in Toronto, Ontario. Samantha's practice focuses mainly on corporate, estate, and international tax planning.

Samantha is also an accomplished author having authored, co-authored, or co-edited pieces for the 3rd edition of Tax and Family Business Succession Planning, “The Liability for Taxes” chapter of the CCH Directors’ Manual, and various other CCH Canadian Limited tax publications. She is a Contributing Editor of both The TaxLetter and The MoneyLetter newsletters and is a regular contributor to Tax Notes (CCH). Samantha frequently lectures for professional and commercial organizations, businesses, and conferences.

Samantha is actively involved in Meritas and a member of their Canada Tax Group and their Leadership Institute as well as serving as a mentor. She served on the Board of Directors for The Macaulay Child Development Centre, and was a member of the Executive Committee for Operanation. 

Samantha received her B.A. from the University of Toronto and her LL.B. from Queen’s University. She was called to the Ontario Bar and admitted to the New York State Bar.

Jim Hamilton
Jim Hamilton
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Jim Hamilton is currently President and CEO of Neptune Technologies, the pioneer in omega-3 phospholipid products.

Prior to this, he was Vice President Human Nutrition and Health, North America, and President of DSM Nutritional Products USA. He also served on the global management team of DSM Nutritional Products’ Human Nutrition business, an organization with over $2 billion in sales and operations in more than 40 countries.

During the course of his over 30 year career in the field, Jim has played a leading role in the dietary supplement, food, animal feed, personal care and consumer products industries. Jim’s industry knowledge and innovative approach have made him a valuable contributor to numerous organizations and associations including as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Council for Responsible Nutrition.

Jim is a graduate of Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, and he has attended numerous business and leadership programs including at the London Business School and INSEAD.

What inspired you to join Vitamin Angels?  For me, Vitamin Angels was the power of nutrition personified. They helped me understand how vital nutrition is. Not just for good health. But for life.

How do I stay healthy? Walk and weigh… each day. Every evening I try to make sure I have moved or walked at least a minimum that day. And each morning, a weight check. For there is nothing like a regular reminder to help insure good behavior.   

James S. Tonkin
James S. Tonkin
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  • Independent voting member: -

For more than 33 years, Jim has served as a private-sector brand product and marketing development professional who builds and designs national infrastructures for food and beverage industry clients. He has successfully created and implemented business and financial strategies for domestic and international corporations—focusing on production, branding, sales, marketing, and distribution.

Jim’s long-standing expertise stretches across several sectors, including domestic cheeses and potato chips; bottled waters for people and pets; and nutraceutical, functional and enhancement beverages. Jim serves as a popular keynote speaker several times a year. He covers a range of topics that include trends in the business, product innovations, and food and beverage industry predictions.

Scott Holmes
Scott Holmes
  • Election date:
  • Independent voting member: -

Seasoned advertising and digital executive, Scott is a true visionary with broad and deep expertise in technology, entertainment and mobile commerce initiatives with Fortune 100 brands and start-ups alike.  Accomplished leader of 20 years and former founder of United Future, a digital media agency, Scott was named 2012/13 Mobile Ambassador by the Mobile Excellence Awards Association.

Scott has helped mentor several startups over the past decade, and has been written up as a thought leader in the WSJ, Wired Magazine, Los Angeles Business Journal and featured speaker. He resides in Westlake Village with his wife and 2 sons.

What inspired you to join Vitamin Angels? The ability to make a difference today and not have to spend money on finding a cure.

How do you stay healthy?  A daily regimen of vitamins, exercise, healthy elixirs and smiling as much as possible.

Peter W. Hefele
Peter W. Hefele
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  • Independent voting member: -

Peter is the Senior Vice President of Business Development for Vitaquest International LLC, including its Garden State Nutritionals, Windmill Health Products, and Celmark Hydroceuticals divisions.

Previously, Peter was the Vice President of Sales and Marketing for HVL Incorporated, which included its market-leading Douglas Laboratories division. Additional responsibilities included Board Advisement on the execution of mergers and acquisitions.

Before joining HVL Incorporated, Peter served as the Manager of North American Pharmaceutical Sales for Capsugel, a Division of Pfizer. Over his eleven years there, Capsugel became the international leader in the development and manufacturing of hard gelatin capsules (HGC).

Peter sits on various boards, has publications in print, and is a degreed Chemist and German Literary. Peter is a graduate of Drew University.

Jeffrey B. Brams
Jeffrey B. Brams
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  • Independent voting member: -

Jeff is General Counsel and Vice President for Science and International Business for Garden of Life, Inc., a privately held, leading brand of premium whole food nutrition, probiotic and digestion supplements. Jeff joined the company in 2007 and oversees product formulation, research and development, science, regulatory, international sales, and legal departments.

Prior to Garden of Life, Jeff served as Vice President and Assistant General Counsel for Arby’s Restaurant Group, and General Counsel to the United Franchise Group.

Over his career Jeff has traveled to and worked in more than 50 countries. Widely considered to be an expert in franchising, Jeff has been a national speaker and author for the American Bar Association and the International Franchise Association for the last fourteen years and was distinguished by Franchise Times magazine as “One to Watch under 40”.

Jeff received his Juris Doctor from the University of Florida College of Law and his B.S. in Finance from Oral Roberts University. 

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