Jervey Tervalon, Founder & Director

Jervey Tervalon was born in New Orleans to an Afro/Creole family and was raised in the Jefferson Park area of Los Angeles. He received his MFA in Creative Writing from UC Irvine, where he worked with Thomas Keneally, the author of Schindler’s List. He’s the author of six novels and two anthologies including Understanding This, for which he won the Quality Paperback Book Club’s New Voices Award, and the Los Angeles Times bestseller Dead Above Ground. His most current novel, Monster’s Chef was published in June 2014. Currently he’s the Founder and Director of Locavore Lit LA, a literary magazine and educational advocacy organization and the Founder and Literary Director of LitFest Pasadena. He’s worked as a screenwriter, dramatist and Disney Screenwriting Fellow and was recently a Shanghai Writers’ Association Fellow. Currently he teaches at the College of Creative Studies at UC Santa Barbara.

Léna Garcia, Managing Editor

Léna Garcia is pursuing her high school English teaching credential and Master’s in Education at the University of California, Berkeley’s Educators for Excellence & Equity (BE3) Program. She has worked with multilingual and newcomer students in Los Angeles, Oakland, and Santa Cruz. She worked as a reporter and as the Assistant News Editor for The Santa Barbara Independent. Léna has a BA in Literature from the University of California, Santa Barbara’s College of Creative Studies and a minor in Professional Editing. 

Angelina Coppola, In Schools Program Director

Angelina Coppola grew up in Los Angeles. She is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, where she received her BA in English with a concentration in Creative Writing. Her writing has been covered in LA Magazine, The Washington Post, CNET Australia, among others. She has extensive experience as a teaching artist and has worked for several organizations in this capacity, including South Pasadena Arts Center (SPACE), WriteGirl, Bold Ink Writers and Day One. She currently writes and teaches in Los Angeles.

Patricia Hurley, Managing Director of Light Bringer Project & Outreach to Schools Co-Lead

Patricia Hurley has daily oversight responsibility for Light Bringer Project, its programs, and operational needs. A graduate with a Fine Arts degree from ArtCenter College of Design, she has professional experience in public relations and marketing. She is a past board member of Leadership Pasadena and is on the communication task force for Villa Esperanza Services, which serves developmentally disabled individuals and their families. Patricia has been with the organization for the past ten years.

Tom Coston, President of Light Bringer Project & Outreach to Schools Co-Lead

Tom Coston has been actively involved in the greater Los Angeles nonprofit community for the past 18 years. As president of Light Bringer Project he leads the organization and its board to fulfillment of its mission “to build communities through the power of the arts” and to achieve long-term success for its innovative learning, prevention, and career pathways programs. Tom has held leadership positions on the boards of many high-profile nonprofit organizations, including Villa Esperanza Services, Leadership Pasadena, Mothers’ Club Family Learning Center, Arroyo Seco Foundation, and Institute for Urban Research and Development, and has served as board president of several of these. Tom is the producer of Pasadena’s famed Doo Dah Parade. He is a graduate of UCLA.

Graeme Fordyce, Brand Consultant

Graeme Fordyce is a writer and photographer living in Los Angeles. He received his BA in Literature from the College of Creative Studies in Santa Barbara and his MFA from the University of Southern California Writing Program where he was a past winner of both the Ed Moses Fiction Award and the Academy of American Poets Prize.

Scott Gandell, Art Director

Scott Gandell wears many hats. He descends from a long line of creatives and business professionals. His experience is as diverse as the subjects he illustrates. You may want to visit Pop Secret Gallery where he has made a home for The Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles, of which he is a Board Member. His network is vast and he is a proud alumnus of ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena.

Philip Huynh, Web Consultant

Philip Huynh graduated from California State University, Northridge in 2015 with a degree in Cinema & Television Arts. From there, he began his journey as a junior web developer and now UI/UX Designer at Filmtools in the last 5 years. During the day, Philip helps manage and design various websites for the company. However, during the night, he works with local non-profits and small businesses to help create and build their vision.