Exceptional People’s Choice Award Winners

Time and again, ECF’s board members seek additional opportunities to contribute in a variety of ways
that buoy our ECF family fiscally, physically and emotionally.

To honor their innovation and outreach and recognize their exemplary support and impact,
we created the Exceptional People’s Choice Award in 2020. Winners are chosen each year by ECF staff.

2023 Winner — Azita Karimkhany Fatheree

As a member of the Board of Directors and a mother of a son with special needs, Azita has a great passion and commitment for advancing our mission. She worked tirelessly as our Annual Campaign Chair and developed a new event this past year—the ECF Fall Art Crawl—raising awareness of ECF Art Centers throughout Los Angeles. Azita serves as Co-Chair of the ECF Associates Board. She also serves on the Board’s Development Committee, Budget & Finance Committee, Programs Committee and Real Estate Committee and spearheaded a new Community Engagement Task Force to further program enrollments and outreach.

Ellen Turner

2022 Winner — Ellen Turner

Ellen has brought unprecedented levels of engagement and advocacy in her role as Chair of the Development Committee for ECF. She revived ECF’s longest running “First Ever” Golf Benefit with the launch of the ECF Golf Benefit at Oakmont Country Club. Her IT company, Turner Techtronics, performed an extensive free IT assessment that is being referenced to upgrade ECF’s IT equipment, system and security enhancements, and provided instrumental support and real-time CDC COVID updates and health information to ECF Human Resources throughout the pandemic. She has been a dedicated member of the Board of Director’s CEO Succession Task Force, and serves as Assistant Secretary.

2021 Winner — Leslie Abell, Esq.

Les has been a Board Member of ECF since 1984, having served as Chair for three different terms. An ECF Legend, Les and his family have been active supporters of ECF since the late 1950’s, when his sister received services from ECF. He serves as a co-participant on the CEO Succession Task Force and meets with ECF’s CEO monthly. He has generously supported each of ECF’s events and campaigns. Les has also contributed his expertise to ECF’s success and stewardship as a co-leader of Jefferson/Machado property negotiations with the City and Developer.

2020 Winner — Paul Zimmerman

Paul, a Board Chair for 20 years of the ERAS Center with a combined ECF/KEC Board service tenure over 34 years, serves as a co-participant on the CEO Succession Task Force. He dedicates his time and maintains monthly meetings with ECF’s CEO. A passionate ECF supporter and an ECF Legend, Paul is also a generous financial supporter of every ECF fundraising event and campaign.

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