I am Jenisa Washington creator and executive director of the Impact Circle. A nonprofit collective of talented dedicated women committed to social change in local underserved communities. The Impact Circle is the answer to the question “How can I make a difference?”
As a women, wife (22yrs) mother (of three Waldorf educated children. One of whom Isaiah graduated from Highland Hall Waldorf School in June 2017, Tyme Baraka 11th grader at Highland Hall and Iman Sele attends Westside Waldorf school in California) and former business owner (clothing designer and manufacturer of high end ready to wear women’s clothing) frustrated with the current administration and government. I needed to redirect my frustration into action. My family and I live in Venice California. Where (30-40 mins away) neighboring communities are in crisis. Including Venice (where homelessness is a real issue) Considering my resources, relationships, knowledge of philanthropy, skill set and community. I realized that I had all that I needed to make a difference.
The concept of Mother’s Making A Difference (our organization’s original name) is bringing together women with means and resources who are willing to collectively pool their money, resources, talents, expertise/skill set, voice and donate volunteering time to underserved and unrepresented local nonprofit organizations, people and communities.
The goal is to work with local vetted nonprofit organizations and programs (with an annual operating budgets of $150,000) who are doing incredible work in their communities. The Impact Circle’s mission is to provide transformational impact, enhancement and support to those organizations by giving monetary grants, sharing our expertise/skill set and donating hands on volunteering time to help the organization reach their next level goal!
For the last twenty years I have donated, volunteered and given service to many organizations and nonprofits dedicated to the support of minority artists in the art world, education + support for vulnerable youth, empowerment health and wellness of women + girls, equality and justice for all and environment sustainability. My husband and I have helped raise money and built a school in war torn West Africa’s Sierra Leone and support growth and prosperity in Kigali Rwanda! My most rewarding work recently has been in support of Waldorf education. It has been Wonderful to witness our children Grow, Thrive and Develop into Amazing human beings in a whole and healthy way... as a result of this unique education. The Impact Circle, is a natural next step for me and connected to my life’s work of service!
Patti along with her husband, Dave, own and run several restaurants on the west side and downtown Los Angeles. Patti met Dave while working in marketing at New Line Cinema, having spanned an extensive career in the entertainment industry, from Warner Music Group to Warner Home Video to BMG. Growing up in Milwaukee, Patti was no stranger to the food world, having founded a family baking company that sold to hotels and gourmet food shops, and catered events large and small in the Twin Cities. After Dave founded The Brig, together Dave and Patti opened a series of properties under the Reiss Co umbrella, beginning with Beechwood in 2004. Together, the two share an entrepreneurial spirit that began with a boutique gourmet food shop on Beverly Blvd., and has grown over the years into the vibrant Reiss Co portfolio of restaurant and bar concepts.
As Patti became increasingly frustrated with the current state of our government, it was not enough to write checks and sign petitions. Through her commiseration and discussions with Jenisa Washington, she was inspired to become an active volunteer for organizations close to her heart and serves on the Impact Circle Board to help develop and guide grants for transformative impact to under-served non-profit organizations within the community.
Venezuelan-born, French citizen and gypsy by choice. In the search for my true self I experienced all forms of Art, later deciding that Cinema was the best place to funnel my own expression and a growing interest in social justice. After working for 7 years as a TV producer, I went to contribute as content director for the first Netflix-like service in France and later for a Media company in London. As time passes, I find it harder to define myself only by what I have done professionally. We are so much more than our achievements. These days my interests are plural, while always having as the main focus on promoting unity and collaboration through whatever I do and wherever I go.
Native from São Paulo, Brazil, Estela De Wulf is a former corporate lawyer and executive director of non-profit organizations supporting social change and development in Brazil. Currently based in Los Angeles with her husband and daughter, Estela is a Positive Discipline certified parenting educator and coach, supporting families raise happy and capable children who are aware of their personal power and responsibility. Estela is also a board member of Malibu based Roots & Wings – Institute for the Study of Family Excellence, helping lead an initiative to create respectful relationships in homes and schools.