Bonnie Baranoff

Bonnie is one of the natives, born and raised in San Diego. She grew up in East County and is proud to call La Mesa her forever home.  She is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego and has worked in STEM and higher education publishing for over 20 years.  She’s proud to be one of the first graduates of Antioch University’s “Women & Leadership” Certificate Program, and is energized by community involvement and getting things done. She hopes more La Mesa residents get involved in serving our community by working together to keep La Mesa the “Jewel of the Hills.” Bonnie is a founding member of La Mesa Conversations. 

John Greenwell

A native of San Diego's East County, John Greenwell is an Academic Coach at Arroyo Vista Charter School in Chula Vista.  In this role, John coordinates the school's staff development, monitors teaching practices, and facilitates continuous assessment of student progress.

John earned his bachelors degree in Philosophy and French Literature from Fordham University in New York City and his Masters of Science in Education from Northwestern University in Evanston, IL.

John currently serves as the Co-Director for the San Diego Leadership Alliance, a nonprofit dedicated to developing young leaders in the San Diego metropolitan area.  He also is one of the leaders of the San Diego chapter of Gay For Good, the nation's only all-LGBT and ally volunteer organization. As an active member of the Young Professionals Council and the Leadership Circle, John continues to highlight the amazing work of the San Diego LGBT Community Center. John volunteers for many progressive, community organizations throughout the San Diego region. In his remaining spare time, John enjoys hiking, swimming, watching movies on Netflix or Hulu, and reading.  Proud to create meaningful dialogue in his community of La Mesa, John is excited to be a part of La Mesa Conversations!

Colin Parent

Colin Parent was elected to the La Mesa City Council in Fall 2016, and looks forward to serving La Mesa in this new capacity. He is Policy Counsel at the Circulate San Diego. He is responsible for advocating for affordable transit, safe walkable neighborhoods, and effective land use policy. 

Colin served on the Jerry Brown for Governor 2010 campaign, and was appointed by Governor Brown as the Director of External Affairs for the California Department of Housing and Community Development. Prior to working for Governor Brown, Colin practiced law for three years as a commercial litigator at the San Diego office of the international law firm of DLA Piper US LLP. During 2013 and 2014, Colin served as the Director of Policy at the San Diego Housing Commission. Colin is a serial social entrepreneur in San Diego. He co-founded the San Diego Leadership Alliance, an organization that trains young San Diegans to be equipped for civic leadership. As a board member of the League of Conservation Voters San Diego, he chaired the first ever coalition to grade the environmental records of elected officials in the City of San Diego. 

Colin grew up in East County San Diego and is a graduate of the NYU Law School, and the University of California, San Diego. He enjoys spending quality time with his Kindle, and taking pictures of his food. Find out more at

Akilah Weber

Dr. Akilah Weber is a board-certified obstetrician/gynecologist and is the Director of the Pediatric & Adolescent Gynecology Division at Rady Children's Hospital-San Diego.

A native San Diegan, she graduated from Gompers secondary school in 1996. Dr. Weber earned her medical degree at the University of Rochester Medical and Dental School in New York, completed her residency at John H. Stroger Hospital of Cook County in Chicago and completed a pediatric and adolescent gynecology fellowship at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center.

Dr. Akilah Weber is an active member of her community. She is very passionate about giving back and serving as a positive role model for youth and exposing them to careers in the STEM fields. She is the science coordinator for the Links to STEM program, which targets minorities in grades 4-8.  She is a member of a variety of organizations including the San Diego Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., the San Diego Chapter of The Links Inc. (currently the corresponding secretary), the San Diego Chapter of Jack & Jill of America (currently the deputy program director), La Mesa-Foothills Democratic Club (currently on the executive board), and the Black Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (currently the recording secretary). She is also an elected delegate to represent for the 79th Assembly District.

When not working, Dr. Weber enjoys reading, traveling and spending time with her family and friends. She is married and has two young sons, Kadir age 6 and Jalil age 4.


Dr. Anthony Mc Ivor, Founder Emeritus
After 27 years in Washington DC, as a subject matter expert and writer for the defense and intelligence communities, Dr. Mc Ivor now works from his family home in La Mesa. Most interesting client: Spanish Nuclear Agency in Madrid.  A proud Highlander still, Anthony holds degrees from Grossmont College and the University of California, San Diego.  Dr. Mc Ivor is a founding member of La Mesa Conversations.

Dexter Levy, Founder Emeritus
Retired Construction and Labor Relations Executive; Former Chairman of the La Mesa Planning Commission; Former Chairman of La Mesa’s 
Building Code Review Committee; Former Member of the Proposition G Independent Citizens’ Bond Oversight Committee for $247 million of General Obligation Bonds for new additions at Grossmont Hospital. He is a founding member of La Mesa Conversations.