Meet Kinsey Cohen & Julia Stermer, Newest VCCF Staff
We would like to welcome our newest VCCF staff members, Kinsey Cohen and Julia Stermer!
Julia Stermer is the Executive Assistant to President & CEO, Vanessa Bechtel, at Ventura County Community Foundation. Born and raised in Camarillo of Ventura County, Julia is thrilled to enter the nonprofit field to help her home community after many years in the travel industry.
In her high school and early college years she raised money for, and attended, volunteer work abroad in Romania, Turkey, China, and Brazil where she mostly taught English and assisted in finding solutions to pressing needs of the local communities through an organization known as IMPACT. After completing her Associate Degree of Arts at Ventura County Community College, she began the Bachelor of English program at California State University of Channel Islands before family illness and financial need caused her to postpone study and enter the workforce fulltime. Based on her passion for travel from her volunteer work, she joined the travel industry where she spent many years within a river cruise company, progressing from Reservationist to Groups Reservationist, to Communications Coordinator & Administrative Assistant, to Executive Assistant of the Vice President of Sales. She was inspired to join Ventura County Community Foundation, because of their Vision, Mission, and Values: trust, transparency, compassion, equity, tenacity, excellence, and authentic connection. Her personal mottos are “pack patience and kindness on every trip; always maintain a student mindset; and we cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.”
When not working, Julia volunteers as a re-enactor at Renaissance Fairs, exhibiting historical attire and handiworks from the 15-1700s which included the Middle Ages, Elizabethan Renaissance, and the Age of Enlightenment, also known as the Golden Age of Piracy. Outside of these events, she enjoys hiking, board games, and spending time with friends, family, and her cat, Athena.
Born and raised in Chatsworth, Kinsey Cohen has lived in Ventura County on and off since her freshman year at CSU Channel Islands in 2013, where she received a B.A. in Psychology. An avid sailor, Kinsey also holds an OUPV Captain’s License/Merchant Mariner Credential. Prior to joining the VCCF team, she was the Development and Programming Assistant and a Program Instructor at a nonprofit located in Oxnard aboard a 110. ft tall ship. Kinsey spent her childhood summers sailing on Huntington Lake at Gold Arrow Camp but really fell in love with sailing when she joined her varsity sailing team at CSUCI, where she was the captain for three years and a sailing instructor for youth and adults at the CI Boating Center. She found a passion for teaching kids how to sail when she was a counselor for two years back at GAC and a sailing instructor for the CIBC summer camp. Kinsey is ecstatic to bring her unique experience to VCCF and contribute to the incredible impact that the foundation brings to Ventura County. When not working or sailing, Kinsey loves to knit and crochet, read, explore Disneyland, and brag about her cat, Anya.