Buena Vista Partners of Palo Alto assists the residents of Buena Vista Mobile Park by providing resources and opportunities and fostering connections to the surrounding community.

Meet the Board

Emilio Jon Rodriguez, Chairman and Treasurer

Since moving to East Palo Alto in the early 1990s, Jon has served under-resourced communities as a volunteer with a variety of organizations and has a focus on empowering youth to become the leaders of tomorrow. Leading teams of volunteers for service trips to Nicaragua has further fueled his desire to serve similar communities locally.

Inspired by the leadership and tight community of the residents of Buena Vista, Jon is excited to support their ongoing efforts to provide resources, advocacy, and educational support to this special community.

A keen traveler, Jon enjoys exploring foreign cultures and foods.

Julie Young, Vice Chair

Recently moved from the South Bay to the Peninsula, Julie has found “new neighbors” at Buena Vista. She has greatly enjoyed time spent at the park and getting to know the residents. Impacted by their stories and the deep sense of community, Julie is thrilled to be a part of a greater effort to provide support, hope, and greater resources to all the residents. 

As a career, Julie has worked in both education and non-profit arenas, with a focus on mobilizing people to serve under-resourced communities. Globally, she has led teams of volunteers to Uganda, Costa Rica, and Mexico, and locally, she has mentored youth to serve the economically disadvantaged in San Jose and Sunnyvale.  She is currently employed as the Director of Compassion at Palo Alto Vineyard Church.

Travel, baking, and afternoon tea are some of Julie’s favorite pastimes. 

Karen Bil Ratzlaff, Secretary

A long-time Barron Park resident, Karen considers it a privilege to be part of this fledging organization that will help provide a safety net and a hand up for financially vulnerable neighbors at Buena Vista Mobile Park. 

Karen’s career has included writing and fundraising for diverse non-profits, notably an organization that helped street children in Russia and a religious order that raised money to build schools in rural Nicaragua.

She is passionate about antiques, gardening and a good mystery.

Amado Padilla

Amado is a long-time Palo Alto resident and a Professor of Developmental and Psychological Sciences in the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University. He has served on the boards of numerous non-profit organizations in the community working with children and youth. For the past eight years, Amado and his Stanford students have assisted Buena Vista Mobile Park parents and children in the areas of education and wellness. His wife, Deborah, is an educator who until recently was the principal of a Catholic parish school in Redwood City.

Amado has traveled extensively in Latin America and enjoys cooking, collecting art and taking very long walks.