A personal and major career shift in 1978 led to a new philosophy toward work:


It had to be fun


It had to be “worthy” work


It had to pay well…or I would do it for free if I felt like it!


The company’s vision was to provide analysis, support and advice, with a focus on non profit organizations, that would help the leaders, and thus the organization, thrive and be successful.  Or in some cases, determine that it was time to shut the doors, turn off the lights, and let someone else meet the need.


The areas of focus, initially, were on the arts, social services for women and girls, and marketing research studies.  Eventually, after meeting Jeffrey Wilcox of Third Sector, and becoming an Affiliate with his company,  the focus was on interim CEO management for non profits who had retired/fired or lost an executive director…and they weren’t ready to bring on a new full time leader. 


CZ took on the role of Interim Executive Director for a variety of Los Angeles and Orange County non profits including The Girls Scouts Council of Long Beach, Orange County Head Start, (twice), The Laguna Beach Seniors, (twice) Girls Inc. of Orange County and The Pacific Marine Mammal Center.  Tasks included an analysis of operations, financial considerations, policies and procedures, Board Development and anything else that needed “fixing,” including flood recovery construction, union contracts, and handling the search for a new executive.


Mentoring and coaching was almost always integral to the projects, and is now a major focus.  Consulting services are targeted to board development, strategic planning, program assessments and leadership training.


CZ Associates/Carole Zavala specializes in Interim CEO management for non-profits and services focused on strategic planning, program evaluation and organizational development. She is highly skilled at interviewing techniques, conducting focus groups and facilitating community meetings that help organizations readily identify priorities and needs.  Her guidance in strategic planning makes it possible for organizations to fulfill their vision.


She provides coaching and mentoring services to professionals seeking to make career transitions and/or to those currently in leadership positions who wish to strengthen leadership skills.  Recent clients have included Laguna Beach Seniors, Inc., Sterling Strategic Management Co., Impact Giving and GroundWork Group.  She has mentored several young women at Sias University in China, through the World Academy for the Future of Women. 


As a practicing artist and filmmaker, she established Gallery Q, a venue for exhibitions by senior/community artists at the Laguna Beach Senior/Community Center. She runs an open studio program, The Art Salon, through the City of Laguna Beach.



Affiliate/Senior Team Member – Executive Consulting for the Non-profit Sector-Jeffrey Wilcox/Founder

Specializes in Interim Management, specifically as an Interim Executive Director for non-profit organizations in Orange, Los Angeles and neighboring counties.  


Pacific Marine Mammal Center

Interim Executive Director                                                                                                               May 2011 to August 2012

Provides rescue, rehabilitation, release of marine mammals along the OC coastline.  Managed all aspects of 40 year-old organization.  Hired to create/implement financial/personnel policies and procedures; oversee minor construction projects related to flood recovery.  Conducted feasibility study to determine future growth/potential for the Center.


Orange County Head Start, Inc. one of the largest non-profit agencies in Orange County with an annual budget of $40 million dollars.

Interim Executive Director                                                                                                              11/05-4/06 and 6/09 to 1/2010

Oversight of all aspects of organization with 450 employees, 27 sites serving 4,000 pre-school children from low-income families.  Charged with improving communication, community collaborations, and accountability of staff.


Laguna Beach Seniors, Inc.

Interim Executive Director/Consultant                                                                                            8/2010-1/2011


Project Tomorrow                                                                                                                          7/03-8/05

Executive Director

Managed all aspects of an organization dedicated to enhancing science education in Orange County schools K-12. 


Girl Scout Council of Greater Long Beach                                                                                     6/03-10/03

Interim Executive Director

Managed all aspects of the agency during transition and selection of new Director


Girls Incorporated of Orange County                                                                                            9/2001-9/2002

Interim Executive Director

Administered overall operation of this affiliate of the national agency.


American Women’s Economic Development Corporation (AWED)    

Director of Training and Counseling                                                                                             1990-1992

Developed, implemented and evaluated all aspects of this demonstration project for the Small Business Administration that served women-business owners in the Los Angeles and Orange County area.


Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Orange County                                                                                   1993-2002

Development Associate –Corporate and Foundation Giving


United States Navy – Trainer -NEMESIS Project at Port Hueneme, CA.                                      1992-1998

Topics included: communication and leadership styles; time management; creative problem solving; coping with conflict and difficult people in the workplace; stress management.


Consulting Services

Worked with major arts organizations in Los Angeles/Orange County as well as services to non-profits serving women, and youth.  Client list available upon request.  Has provided services with major arts organizations in Los Angeles/Orange County area, including LACMA, MOCA, the Getty Museum and the Laguna Art Museum.  Projects included strategic planning as well as program evaluation, training for teachers, etc.




University of California, Los Angeles—Bachelor of Arts


University of California, Irvine—Graduate work in Management


Community Involvement


Board of Directors -The Sias Foundation—partnership between a private University in Zengzhou, Henan Province in China and Ft. Hays University in Ft. Hays, Kansas.  (2001-present)


References and comprehensive client list available upon request.

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