Karuna Jaggar
Executive Director

Karuna Jaggar joined Breast Cancer Action (BCAction) as Executive Director in early 2011. Karuna brings a lifelong commitment to social justice and a strong background in nonprofit management and growth.

Under her leadership, Breast Cancer Action has grown in size and reach. Building on the strong legacy of BCAction’s founders and past leaders, BCAction is today a leading source of independent information about breast cancer through one-of-a-kind educational materials, internationally acclaimed webinars, and a strong grassroots Community Leaders program. Today BCAction is a national leader in the anti-fracking movement and has grown its Think Before You Pink® campaigns, including the 2014 campaign challenging Susan G. Komen and Baker Hughes’ pink drill bits “for the cure” which was featured on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

Karuna’s vision helped guide BCAction’s adoption of a bold new strategic plan in 2014 that made health justice central to the organization’s mission. Karuna serves on the Breast Cancer Research Council of the California Breast Cancer Research Project, helping guide the funding strategy and direct grants to breast cancer research that is innovative, collaborative and responsive to the needs of women living with and at risk of the disease.

Karuna strives to bring an inclusive leadership style to Breast Cancer Action, valuing a diversity of voices and experiences as well as making space for people to bring their unique talents to the organization. Throughout her 15-year career in nonprofit leadership, Karuna’s work has focused on women’s rights and on eliminating socio-economic inequities. Karuna began her career working with women’s microenterprises internationally and in the U.S., providing self-employment and business training, funding and support for low-income women. Prior to joining BCAction, Karuna was Executive Director at the Women’s Initiative for Self Employment. Karuna has served on the Board of the California Association of Microenterprise Opportunity (CAMEO) where she chaired the Policy Committee.

Karuna holds a Master’s degree in Economic Geography from UC Berkeley, with a special emphasis on Women, Gender, and Sexuality, and received her BA in Philosophy from Smith College. Karuna is an alumna of the Women’s Policy Institute, a program of the Women’s Foundation of California. Karuna is an unapologetic patient advocate for loved ones who have undergone treatment for breast cancer. She is the parent of two daughters and aunt to two nieces, all between the ages of 7 and 10.


Rebecca Saltzman
Deputy Director

Rebecca has spent the past two decades as a policy advocate, coalition builder, grassroots organizer, and manager with local, state, and national issue-based organizations. She’s also managed, worked on, and advised several local candidate campaigns, various public transit ballot measures, and a statewide initiative. Before joining Breast Cancer Action, Rebecca served as the Interim Executive Director of the California League of Conservation Voters (CLCV), the non-partisan political action arm of California’s environmental movement. Prior to taking on this role, she managed CLCV Education Fund’s Green California program, a network of more than one hundred organizations with a common environmental, health, and justice agenda, working collaboratively to speak to the California legislature with one voice. Rebecca is an elected member of the BART Board of Directors, representing District 3 in the East Bay.

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Zoe Christopher
Resource Liaison & Office Manager

Zoë wears many hats: As BCAction’s Resource Liaison, she connects those seeking information and assistance with the resources they’re looking for regarding detection, treatment, and prevention of breast cancer, as well as BCAction’s environmental and health equity work. As a member of the extended program team, she works to strengthen our local campaign presence and manages our Volunteer Program. She also coordinates all aspects of our working environment. Zoë holds a Masters Degree in transpersonal psychology, and after 15 years working in the trenches of crisis intervention and support, today, when she’s not serving as a mentor for underserved youth, she can be found meandering the streets with a camera, cooking dinner with friends, or practicing joy as a member of a community dance group.

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Katrina Semich
Development Associate

Katrina works with Breast Cancer Action’s fundraising team and donor base, and brings eight years of experience in nonprofit development to BCAction. She has pursued her passion for women’s health and social justice through serving in development roles in international family planning, civil rights, and environmental sustainability nonprofits on the SouthCoast of Massachusetts and Washington, D.C., where she organized local sexual assault survivors to press for policy changes. Katrina holds a Master’s in Public Administration from American University, and a Bachelor’s degree in English & Women’s Studies from University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth.

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Connie Matthiessen
Communications Manager

Connie Matthiessen is a Bay Area journalist and writer whose work has focused on health, education, social justice, and the environment. She started her career at the Center for Investigative Reporting, and has written for a variety of print and online publications and websites. She has also contributed to books including The Hunting Ground and Because I Said So. She has worked as a communications writer for Healthcare Without Harm, the California Institute for Integral Studies, the Center for Care Innovations, and other organizations. She lives in San Francisco and has three children and two very pampered cats.

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lopa-palLopa Pal
Development Manager

Lopa manages Breast Cancer Action’s fundraising activities, ensuring that the organization has the resources it needs to fulfill its mission. Prior to BCAction, Lopa spent 10 years as Donor Relations Officer at Greenbelt Alliance. She brings to BCAction  a love of advocating for environmental justice and building sincere and long-term relationships. Working closely with the Executive Director, Lopa oversees the organization’s fundraising appeals, events, and donor database. She manages third party events and house parties nationwide as well as Don’t Pink For Me, BCAction’s peer to peer fundraising platform. If you want to host a house party or start a Don’t Pink For Me page please don’t hesitate to contact her! Lopa received her BA from UC Santa Cruz and her MA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in Art History.

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Kavya Narendra-Babu, Communications Intern

Kavya is currently a senior at UC Berkeley working on a double major in Legal Studies and Neurobiology, and a minor in Human Rights. She works for the local campus newspaper, The Daily Californian, which has invigorated her interest in communications. Kavya helped coordinate social media outreach as a part of the Tell Her Story project with the Institute for South Asia Studies at Berkeley. She also worked closely with Professor Elul’s lab on research relating to the brain, which has allowed her to gain intensive skills in data analysis and research. Kavya’s excited to work as Breast Cancer Action’s Communications Intern this summer and is looking forward to all the ways she can support the organization’s strategic communications.

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Emma Strand, Strategic Planning Intern

Emma is entering her final year as an undergraduate at UC Berkeley, majoring in Public Health with a minor in Human Rights. She comes to Breast Cancer Action after a semester studying and doing research at the University of Ghana in Accra. With experience in sexual assault prevention and restorative justice on her campus, Emma deeply respects Breast Cancer Action’s work to provide women with accurate and reliable information and to shift the burden of addressing and ending the breast cancer epidemic from the individual to society. During her internship, Emma will work closely with staff to support Breast Cancer Action’s 2019 Strategic Planning process, overseeing the membership survey and landscape analysis. She’s eager to contribute to the organization’s sustainable progress.   

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Edwina Wong, Think Before You Pink® Intern

Edwina is currently a graduate student at UC Berkeley, pursuing a master’s degree in public health, with a focus on epidemiology and data science. She has a background in microbiology and biotechnology, as well as experience in data analysis and visualization, local outreach to disadvantaged business enterprises, and water quality analysis.