The Palms Neighborhood Council
The 2019-2021 Palms NC Board was elected on June 2nd, 2019 to serve the Palms Community and represents residential, business and community stakeholders. Meet your Palms representatives!
I am the President of the Palms Neighborhood Council. I joined as the Area E Representative a year and a half ago and also served as the Chair of the Green Committee. With the Green Committee, I have helped plan several Neighborhood Clean Up Days, where dozens of neighbors get together to pick up trash and beautify our neighborhood. For me, being on the Palms NC is about being part of my community, getting to know my neighbors, and giving back.
In my day job, I am a UCLA PhD student in Health Policy and Management. I also have a Master’s in Public Policy focused on education. I am a former middle school science teacher, and am passionate about supporting child mental health and wellbeing through multi-sector partnerships. Being part of the Palms NC has helped me put my academic knowledge of policy into practice.
When I’m not researching or working with the Palms NC, you can find me hiking, biking, running with my dog, Shorty, doing yoga, dancing, reading and writing for fun, and spending time with friends at restaurants and bars around Palms!
I am the Vice President of the Palms NC and the Chair of the Outreach Committee.
Palms has been my home for the past 8 years. I got involved with the Palms NC in 2018 by volunteering to help at children’s recycled art event and saw how powerful even simple actions can be when neighbors work together. I joined the outreach Outreach Committee and helped to plan and host the 3rd Annual Palms Community Day that occurred in May of 2019.
Before being elected to the role of Vice-President I was the Community-Based Organization Representative on the Palms NC Board. I am also the Miry’s List Welcome Neighbor Liaison for the Palms Neighborhood Council.
I was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and moved to L.A. in 2005 after college as a Teach for America corps member. I taught elementary and middle school at public schools in Pico-Union and South L.A. before transitioning into school leadership and support.
I earned my B.A. in Sociology from Marquette University and my M.A. in Education from Loyola Marymount University.
When I am not serving youth and families or volunteering with the Palms NC, I enjoy being in the sun, reading, listening to music, the beach, and dining across L.A.
I am the Palms Neighborhood Council Secretary. As a civil engineer and architect, I am committed to making Palms cleaner, greener, safer, and better planned. I have lived in Palms for six years and I think our neighborhood is one of the best kept secrets in LA. In the last year, I have been an active volunteer with the Green Committee, and have just taken on the Co-chair role with Jessalyn Waldron. I also volunteer for many other organizations, including Tree People, American Cancer Society, SoCal Westy Swing club (current Treasurer), and as a Peer Navigator for FORCE (Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered). Giving back is a core value of mine. I am passionate about my career working on historic buildings and solar projects. My role requires me to keep multiple parties organized, on-task, on schedule, and code-compliant; and this detail-oriented skill set makes me well-suited for the role of Secretary. I look forward to helping make our great neighborhood even better.
David Bocarsly is a district representative for State Senator Ben Allen (SD-26), working on criminal justice, homelessness and affordable housing, transportation, and early childhood and higher education. He also runs the California Legislative Jewish Caucus, which Senator Allen chairs. David has previously worked for local, state, and federal elected officials in Los Angeles and New York City.
Prior to his professional work in politics, David served as UCLA’s Student Body President and as a Coro Fellow in Public Affairs. He earned his Master of Public Policy and Certificate in Social Justice from the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy. In his spare time, David organizes Jewish community members to advocate for race, class, and gender equity. He also enjoys dancing, laughing, playing backgammon, LA sports, and outdoor adventures.
Community-Based Organization Representative
I am the Palms Neighborhood Council Community-Based Organization Representative. I have lived in Palms for 2 years and worked here for several years before that. I pride myself on being the quintessential professional and I currently work as a real estate agent specializing in probate proceedings. I am an only child and attribute my achievements to hard work and surrounding myself with great people.
I received a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from California State University Northridge and have worked on winning California state assembly campaigns. Immediately after graduating, I became a district executive for the Boy Scouts of America and remain involved with the program to this day. My connection to the scouts is also why I wanted to become the Community Based Organization Representative.
I am an active musician and perform all over Los Angeles. I also enjoy bicycling, playing guitar and rooting for the Lakers.
Representative for Area A
Kay Hartman and her husband Jack and have lived in Palms since 1983. She was born in New York and moved to Orange County with her parents, sister, and brother when she was 7 years old. She has a degree in Mathematics from California State University, Long Beach. Degree in hand, she landed a job at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena as a software developer while pursuing post-graduate studies in Computer Science at UCLA. Kay entered software management while working at Proprietary Software Systems in Santa Monica.
She is now retired and has 37 years experience in software project and program management. Jack and Kay are world travelers and have visited over 40 countries.
Residential Representative for Area B
Rachel Pedowitz is the Associate Director of Impact and Evaluation for a domestic impact investing firm which provides community-enriching infrastructure in the areas of housing, healthcare, and education. Prior to this role, Rachel served as Director of Housing Advocacy for Safe Place for Youth, the lead service provider for young people experiencing homelessness in west Los Angeles, and held direct service and administrative positions in programs which serve children in foster care, young parents, people seeking to expand their employment opportunities, and students engaged in school-based mental health services.
Rachel holds her BA in Psychology and Public Health from UC Berkeley and her MBA and Master of Social Work from USC. In her downtime, Rachel loves dancing, practicing yoga, being in the sun, and spending time with her family and friends.
Residential Representative for Area C
I am the Palms Neighborhood Council Area C Representative. A native Angeleno and 24-year resident of Palms, CA, I have worked in the multicultural City of Palms for over 20 years and know the good, the bad and the ugly. I was appointed to the Palms Neighborhood Council (Palms NC) in June 2018 and have been an avid participant in the Homeless & Safety Committee that works directly with the LAPD to lower crime rates and illegal activity in our neighborhood. I spend my days in Palms dealing with the many pertinent issues of our community as a resident, stakeholder, and business manager.
I am committed to maintaining a safe and friendly community which includes residential parking rights for local renters and owners. I am dedicated to creating a better environment for all of our current and future residents with hopes they’ll join us in our efforts to keep our community one of the best communities in the City of Los Angeles.
Residential Representative for Area D
Jessalyn Waldron discovered passion for serving others through acting and educational theater. Moreover, serving the public for over fifteen years in restaurants, she decided she’d rather return to academia to serve the public’s greater needs. A recent magna cum laude graduate from UCLA with her B.A. in History and a minor in Education she was leader both on and off campus. A former intern for Mayor Garcetti, as well as a certified peer mediator for the Los Angeles Institute for Non-Violence and volunteer for multiple organizations working to protect the ocean and work with children, she’s always been active and involved in her community. Being a transfer student at UCLA she became an advocate for the diverse transfer student community of over 7,000 students by working for the Transfer Student Center. As a program coordinator for the Transfer Mentor Program and co-chair of the student organization Non-Traditional Student Network she provided students with resources as well as planned and hosted events to build community and ensure the success of UCLA transfer students. She is honored and excited to serve her home for the last nine years, the neighborhood of Palms, as the Representative for Area D.
Karla Van Horn
Residential Representative for Area E
I am the Palms Neighborhood Council Area E Representative. I was born in Costa Rica and, at the age of 14, my family moved permanently to St. Cloud, FL., where my parents own and operate Reptile World Serpentarium. As a teenager I worked in the family business learning the ins and outs of reptile husbandry and venom production. While still working full time in the family business, assisting my father with extraction and laboratory processing of snake venom, I attended the University of Central Florida’s Legal studies program, becoming the first one on my mother’s side of the family to obtain a higher education.
In 2011 I decided to move to the place where I felt at home and on September of that same year, I became a resident of the Palms neighborhood. Taking up a position at a construction firm, I showed aptitude for construction and engineering. In 2013 I enrolled in Cal State’s construction engineering program and have loved and enjoyed a successful career in the construction industry since. Today I am the senior project manager/engineer at a small construction firm based in Los Angeles and operating in several states.
From a young age I was interested in public services and volunteerism. At a young age I joined the student body council at my school in Costa Rica. In Orlando I donated my time to assist with the hospice of the comforter helping families get through the hardest periods of their lives. Since arriving in LA I have volunteered at the West LA Animal Shelter, walking and feeding animals up for adoption. In my line of work I have played an important role in helping minorities and people with limited means learn trades and obtain a vocational and technical education.
In late 2018 when the seat for area E representative came open, I felt this was a great opportunity to serve the community I have called home and loved for the past 7 years. On December 2018 I was appointed as the Area E representative, and I also have joined the Public Safety and Homelessness cCommittee as well as the Planning Land & Use Committee. I am committed to advocating for the community of Palms and making sure our voice is heard.
I’m an L.A. native and have lived in Palms since 2010. My main goal is to improve the profile of Palms and the Palms NC by reaching out to businesses, especially building management companies. Over 90% of Palms residents are apartment dwellers, and they are under-represented in city affairs, and yet are the most effected by city policies. Through both business engagement and beautification, I think we can change the answer to the question “Where is Palms?” to one were everyone in L.A. knows our neighborhood, the first one outside of Los Angeles to join in 1915!
I am a Palms Neighborhood Council Business Representative. I grew up in Los Angeles, received my undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley and my PhD in Neurobiology from UC San Diego. I have been living in Palms since 2017, but my ties to the neighborhood stretch back for decades. Over forty years ago my parents opened their real estate office near Venice and Overland. Today, my brother and I carry-on the family business, managing three multi-family apartment buildings in Palms, among others in the West Los Angeles area. I have an inexorable tie to the neighborhood and would like the opportunity to help guide its development. With an ever-burgeoning business center growing in both Palms and neighboring Culver City, we can expect the demand for housing to continue to rise in the area. It is the role of government to provide the local infrastructure to sustain this growth and it is the councils’ job to ensure that the city government acts in accordance with the best interests of the neighborhood. Palms is changing, and I would like to contribute to make sure that change is for the better.
I am the Palms Neighborhood Council Youth Representative. I began volunteering with the Palms NC at the beginning of 2019 as a way to do something meaningful and rectify my post graduate malaise. Despite a four year stint in college, I have lived in Palms my entire life and am excited to be able to contribute to the community that has helped shape me into the person I am today.
I have a BA in Literature with an emphasis in Creative Writing from the University of California, Santa Cruz. I believe writing is something that can help the people of Palms come together and connect in a way that is creatively conducive. In my free time I like to write, read, work out and attempt to master the art of understanding the self.