Meet the Team
Chief Operations Officer
Stacy Springer has worked for philanthropic, non-profit agencies since 1993. A graduate from UC Davis with a major in English and an emphasis in Japanese, Stacy has worked as a teacher abroad, the Admissions Director for an international private school in Florida, and has organized fundraisers for the American River Parkway Foundation. Native to Sacramento, Stacy grew up enjoying the parkway and was thrilled to now have the opportunity to manage programs dedicated to preserving ‘Sacramento’s Jewel’. As many of her volunteers were parkway users, enjoying the outdoors for health reasons, Stacy developed an interest in the marriage between health and the environment. As a senior manager now at Breathe, and the coordinator for their largest annual fundraiser, the Breathe Bike Trek, Stacy continues to use her fundraising and program management skills to forward BREATHE’s philanthropic goal of clean air, healthy lungs, and tobacco free living.
David L. Modisette
Manager of Legislative Affairs
Dave was unanimously selected by the Board of Directors to be CEO in July of 2017. Dave brings to the position over 25 years of experience as CEO of other non-profit organizations in Sacramento, including the California Electric Transportation Coalition and the California Municipal Utilities Association. Before that, Dave was Project Director of the California Legislature’s Joint Committee on Energy Regulation and the Environment. Dave also worked at the California Energy Commission for 10 years, becoming the Division Chief of the Energy Technologies Development Division, where he managed the Commission’s activities to develop clean, renewable energy resources. Early in his career, Dave was the Legislative Director for a State Assemblyperson. Dave has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of California, and has lived in the Sacramento area for over 40 years.
Gi-Diep Nguyen has over 26 years’ experience in the accounting field, in both private and non-profit organizations. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley in Applied Mathematics and Operation Research and received her MBA from Golden Gate University. In the 14 years with Breathe, she has been in charge of accounting and personnel functions. In addition, she assists the CEO in the process of budgeting and forecasting yearly income and expenses, internal grant auditing, and preparation for the yearly audit. Breathe has received excellent audit results every year since she has been with the agency.
Senior Programs Director
After graduating from Sonoma State with a degree in English Literature, Katie Cox realized her true passion was for public lands preservation, natural resource advocacy, and youth-based environmental education. Katie spent 2013-15 completing coursework in the Environment & Community graduate studies program at Humboldt State University. Her thesis research investigated barriers to increased participation in backcountry recreation and the environmental movement among communities of color. It was through this research project that she realized the extent that social and environmental justice issues are related to issues of public health. Secondarily, her work offers suggestions to increase the efficacy youth programming and curricula. If not in the office, you might find Katie with her German Shepard ‘Scout Finch’, hunting for agates, trekking through the wilderness, peak bagging or fly-fishing for steelhead on a remote river.
Jacob is our Tobacco Policy Program Manager with a BA in Government from Sacramento State University, he brings over 8 years of experience developing strategic action plans, public policy, and community development. Throughout his career in the non-profit sector Jacob has worked with local agencies and county health departments in the areas of healthy retail, farm to fork, physical activity and obesity prevention. His work has included successfully passing a “Healthy Beverage in Kids Meal” ordinance in the city of Stockton working with elected officials and key stakeholders. In addition, Jacob played a lead role in the campaign to successfully re-elect Cathleen Galgiani to the State Senate, his service as a consultant to non-profits has been of great value to many communities. In his spare time he enjoys hiking along the Sacramento river, playing soccer, and staying active.
Clean Air Policy Manager
After a 10-year hiatus, Jennifer has returned to Breathe California to advocate for improved air quality through better land use planning, guided by the organization’s Clean Air Agenda. She has over 12 years’ experience with Sacramento-based non-profits, wearing many different hats. She has a Master’s in Business Administration from UC Davis and a Bachelor’s in Botany from UC Riverside. In her spare time, Jennifer is a Girl Scout leader, serves on the PTO at her daughters’ school and enjoys walking and bicycling.
Claire Garcia is the Thumbs Up! Thumbs Down! (TUTD) Program Manager and has been with Breathe since 2015. As TUTD Program Manager, her responsibilities include event and training organization, data collection and entry, and supervising over 30 TUTD student volunteers. Claire was born and raised in Sacramento and wouldn’t work or live anywhere else. When she was in high school, she joined Breathe’s Youth Advisory Board and enjoyed the opportunity to become acquainted with Breathe’s programs and mission during that time. Claire went to college at UCLA and majored in Political Science and graduated in 2015, joining Breathe shortly thereafter. She loves her position here at Breathe and now is the foremost authority on whether or not you should spend money on that movie you were thinking about seeing.
Jenny Matchell received a BS in Social Sciences with an emphasis in Environmental Sciences from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Working as a volunteer to rescue sick and injured marine animals at the Marine Mammal Center sparked her interest in the connection between people and the environment. She would go on to volunteer with other organizations in Hawaii and California that study the effects of tourism on marine mammal behavior. Since returning to Sacramento 10 years ago, Jenny has continued her connection with people and the environment on a different platform. As a special event planner and small business owner, Jenny has been able to combine her passion for putting on exemplary events with her love of the great outdoors and physical fitness. Jenny joined the Breathe team because preserving the air quality in this region is important to her as an avid runner and as a fourth generation Sacramento native.
Cerena is our Administrative Assistant and a loyal Sacramento native. She came to Breathe in 2017 ready to combine her love of organization and administrative duties with her passion for health and the environment. She works closely with the COO and CFO to ensure an organized and efficient, yet comfortable and relaxing office atmosphere. Cerena graduated California State University Sacramento in 2016 with her BA, majoring in Psychology and minoring in Business, focusing on management of organizational behavior and human resources; she plans to return to obtain her master’s degree in the near future.