About Us

Belinda Lyons-Newman, MBA, Principal

Belinda has more than two decades of experience in all aspects of nonprofit management, organizational planning, fund development, and program development. She brings her business expertise and strong commitment to social justice into her work. 


Belinda’s experience includes ten years as Executive Director of the Mental Health Association of San Francisco (MHA). At MHA Belinda launched nationally recognized programs and led the organization through a successful operational and financial turnaround, overseeing expansions in programs and budgets. She also led the San Francisco campaign and served on the statewide campaign for California Proposition 63, the Mental Health Services Act, which was passed by California voters in 2004. The Act continues to bring in more than $1 billion each year for mental health care across California.

Belinda also served as Commissioner and Chair of the City of Berkeley Homeless Commission, as a member of the Chinatown Community Development Center Board of Directors, and as a member of the San Francisco Mayor’s Behavioral Health Innovations Task Force. She currently serves as a member of the Evaluation Committee for the State of California Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission and she is an Advisory Board Member at the U.C. Berkeley Greater Good Science Center.

Belinda received the 2006 National Mental Health Association Innovation in Programming Award and a 2010 Public Health Hero Award from the City and County of San Francisco Department of Public Health.

As a skilled group facilitator, Belinda brings a diverse set of tools and facilitation methods to her work with teams. She has completed training in facilitation from Community at Work, Technology of Participation (ToP) Facilitation Methods, the Interaction Institute for Social Change, and in Design Thinking methods from the U.C Berkeley Haas School of Business.

Belinda earned her MBA in Nonprofit Management at the U.C. Berkeley Haas School of Business and her BA in Psychology and Women’s Studies at McGill University.

For more information, please contact Belinda to discuss your needs.

Van S. Nguyen, Associate

Van is passionate about equipping clients from the private, not-for-profit and public sectors with strategic market insights that allow organizations to operate at their peak potential. As a strategy consultant at Accenture and the Kaiser Permanente Health Plan, Van has worked with a broad range of clients from statewide government agencies to corporate venture capital firms to develop and refine their operational and growth strategies leveraging a unique blend of analytics and design thinking. Van is a proud “double bear” having earned both his Masters of Public Policy and Bachelor of Arts at the University of California, Berkeley.

Sharyl Rabinovici, Ph.D., Associate


Sharyl Rabinovici is a Bay-Area based research and policy consultant whose mission is to create knowledge and shared understanding to serve the public good. She conducts survey and qualitative research projects, orchestrates strategic initiatives, and leads stakeholder engagement projects for a variety of non-profits, cities, and government entities. She received her PhD in Public Policy from UC Berkeley and currently serves as Visiting Scholar at the Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center at UC Berkeley, a Board member of the US Resiliency Council, and President of the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute’s Northern California Chapter. Her background also includes two years teaching as Visiting Assistant Professor of Public Policy at Mills College, as well as degrees from Stanford in geology and the University of Chicago in public policy.

Kristin Barendsen, Editor

Kristin Barendsen is an award-winning writer and editor who helps organizations craft messaging, update their brand voice, revamp website copy, create video scripts, and more. A former contributing editor for Yoga Journal and Yoga International magazines, she has published more than 100 stories in magazines and newspapers around the world. She is co-author of Photography: New Mexico and a book on Buddhism to be published by an imprint of MacMillan in 2018. She has also copyedited/proofread more than 150 nonfiction books. She is a recipient of the Academy of American Poets Prize and two Southwest Writers writing awards. Kristin studied creative writing and studio art at Stanford University, graduating with distinction. 

Contact Us: (415) 845-5259 or email