Pilar Diaz Bio
Pilar is a nonprofit professional with more than 17 years of experience working in Southern California. Her roles have included grantmaking, development, program management, and community organizing. Pilar is currently the Director of Community Partnerships & Resource Development for the Boys & Girls Club of West San Gabriel Valley.
Her work has focused on reaching underserved communities and improving the lives in those communities. A transplant from Colorado, Pilar began her career in South Los Angeles. First, as a Program Director for the Watts Labor Community Action Committee, Pilar provided leadership and resource workshops for students and parents who resided in the Nickerson and Jordan Downs Housing Projects. Thereafter, she became the Los Angeles Organizer for the Center for Community Change in its National Campaign for Jobs and Income Support work surrounding Temporary Aid for Needy Families reauthorization campaign. She worked with Los Angeles organizations in collaborating to advance their welfare reform advocacy efforts on local, state, and federal levels.
Pilar’s 14 years in grantmaking for private foundations prioritized assisting nonprofits in Southern California in building their capacity while providing quality and culturally competent programs. At The California Endowment, she worked on the Local Opportunities Fund grant initiative, which focused on supporting emerging and community-based organizations. At LA84 Foundation, her portfolio included established organizations such as LA’s BEST and Southern California Tennis Association, but also many community-based youth sports programs from throughout Southern California, especially remote areas. And in addition to reviewing and managing youth sports grants, one of Pilar’s roles at LA84 Foundation was festival director for Run4Fun, a 10-week, county-wide running program that culminated in a 2K cross country meet. She also recruited and managed volunteers as well conducted outreach and organized events. During her tenure in grantmaking, she was active in the Asian Americans Pacific Islanders In Philanthropy and the Emerging Practitioners In Philanthropy. She was on both organizations’ steering committees and chaired subcommittees.
Pilar is active in various community organizations including PBS SoCal API Community Council and Center Theatre Group’s Young Producers Circle. She was one of the founding board members of Hunger Action L.A., an organization working to end hunger and promote healthy eating, as well as TeAda Productions, whose mission is to expand awareness of issues affecting underserved communities through the development and presentation of performances by people of color. Pilar also served on the board of the University of Colorado Boulder Alumni Association. For her community work, especially engaging the next generation of philantropists, she was recognized by the Liberty Hill Foundation as its 2011 Change L.A. NextGen Honoree.
Pilar earned her undergraduate degree in Ethnic Studies from the University of Colorado Boulder and a Master of Public Administration degree from California State University, Northridge.