Welcome New Board Members

The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County is proud to welcome two new members to its Board of Directors. Rick Williams and Rob Garcia both have extensive experience giving back to the community and serving on nonprofit boards.

Rick Williams

Rick Williams is the former CEO of the Sobrato Family Foundation and the founder and President of Realize Consulting Group. Rick also previously served as the Director of the Asset Funders Network and the National Programs Director of the Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation. Additionally, Rick previously served as the Deputy Director of the Santa Clara County Mental Health Department and as an executive in several nonprofit organizations. 

Rick has served on many nonprofit boards and is currently the Vice Chair of Third Sector Capital Partners.  He also serves as a board member of the Community Foundation of San Luis Obispo County and Pivotal, the largest foster youth-serving organization in Silicon Valley.  Previously, Rick served as the Board Chair of Archbishop Mitty High School, and as a Board Member of Northern California Grantmakers, the National Council of Family Philanthropy, Fresh Lifelines for Youth, Silicon Valley Law Foundation, and Grantmakers for Effective Organizations. 

Rick holds a master’s and bachelor’s degree in clinical psychology from Antioch University and Washington State University. He resides on the Central Coast of California with his wife of 36 years, Barb. He has a daughter who is working and living in Pittsburg and a son who is working and living in Silicon Valley.

Rob Garcia

Rob is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner and has earned the Accredited Investment Fiduciary® professional designation from Fiduciary 360, receiving formal training in investment fiduciary responsibility. He also obtained a Certificate in Financial Planning from Boston University and holds FINRA Series 65 certification.

Rob graduated cum laude from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo in 1997 with a degree in Business Administration concentrating in Financial Management. Rob believes in giving back to the
community. He currently serves on the Cuesta College Foundation Board as well as their Finance Committee, the French Hospital Medical Center Foundation Finance Committee, and on the Board of Directors for Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo, CAPSLO. As a veteran, he has been a member of the American Legion Post 66 for
over 20 years.

Rob lives in Templeton, with his beautiful wife, Deb, his two sons, Brandon and Jakeb, and their golden-doodle, Jack. The Garcia family is often found on the tennis court, as all four enjoy the game, or headed out for a camping trip.

We thank outgoing Board members Mary Verdin and Jim Brabeck for their decade of service.

Jeff and Joan Buckingham of The Buckingham Family Charitable Fund

Jeff and Joan Buckingham have made SLO County their home and serve the community in a variety of meaningful ways that make a difference in their own lives and in the lives of others. When Jeff Buckingham was a kid, he always dreamed of being a dairy farmer.  Luckily for him, Jeff found an enthusiastic partner in Joan and discovered that running a business and running a farm require the same traits of patience and stamina, knowing the landscape and helping others find their way. 

Jeff and Joan show their dedication to the community through random acts of kindness and direct involvement in community programs, projects, charitable contributions, and volunteering – including Jeff’s two-year term as president of The Community Foundation Board and his continued service as a Board member.  

Video courtesy of AMF Media Group SLO

The heart of the Buckingham’s commitment to serving those around them can be seen and felt in part of the family’s mission statement, “We are an inexhaustible source of contribution to our community and to our world.” With the Buckingham Family Charitable Fund, “we can look at our donations on an annual basis to make sure that our values match up with the donations.”

Jeff and Joan established The Buckingham Family Charitable Fund in 2021. As Jeff shared, “We decided to do this because we can take advantage of a larger charitable deduction by combining all of our giving over several years into a donor-advised fund.” As a member of the Board of The Community Foundation, having their own fund is also a way to learn more about the experience of Foundation donors. 

Jeff and Joan have two grown children and live off the grid on a ranch near Los Osos with an assortment of cows, dogs, cats, chickens, and many wild creatures.

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Heidi H. McPherson Chief Executive Officer (805) 543-2323