Parents for an Inclusive LILA

Our alliance, Parents for an Inclusive LILA, was formed to foster inclusivity and a sense of belonging for all. Our cultural diversity brings our 65 nationalities together. This parent group is passionate about creating a culture that values difference. 

From this group have come several parent-led and parent-run initiatives represented below:

The Affinity Groups at LILA aim to build community and promote inclusivity, belonging, and celebration of the rich diversity on our campuses. Our Affinity Groups build connections and spaces where families can freely share their experiences, ensuring their voice are respected and celebrated. Together, we build a community that embraces, uplifts, and unites us all.

*What is an affinity group? An affinity group is a gathering of people who share an identity (e.g. profession, religion, race, gender, sexual orientation, age etc.). Identity is a prerequisite for membership. Click here and here for more resources on the benefits of affinity groups.

Meet our Group Leaders

Don’t hesitate to reach out! They’d be delighted to hear from you! More questions? Email Juliette Lange, Director of Admissions & Diversity.

Parents of Neurodiverse Children Group

Jeff Vespa

Los Feliz | Los Feliz Campus

Grade: Kindergarten
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Support Group for Parents of Neurodiverse Children

My wife Emily and I have two daughters, Genevieve in 3rd grade and Josephine in kindergarten. We had to take Genevieve out of LILA this year as she has learning differences that were too much for her to learn properly at LILA. We took over this group last year when we got her diagnosis.

This group is to support parents with neurodiverse children and to share our stories with each other.

Click here to send me an email!

Black Affinity Group

Alicia Moo-Pow

Los Angeles | Burbank Campus

Grade: 6th
Campus: Burbank
Affinity Group: Black Affinity Group

We’ve become long time transplants to LA from NJ, and are a non-French speaking family. Casey started in preschool in West Valley, attended Los Feliz for pre-K – 5th grade, and is currently enjoying the lockers at Burbank. She enjoys playing with friends, video games, art, and her band MHMOK. She also plays tennis. 

I co-lead the Black Affinity Group and formerly served as DEI liaison for the Los Feliz Parents’ Association (PA), and lend a hand to the Annual Fund team. I enjoy traveling and spending time with my family. We chose LILA because of its French curriculum and global perspective. Casey craves being the first to arrive and the last to leave campus – she loves this place! With LILA’s help, I hope Casey will continue to build life-long friendships and grow to be an insightful citizen of the world.

The Black Affinity Group is eager to create a community for the students and families who want to see more of themselves on and off campus.

Click here to send me an email!

Adoptive & Surrogate Family Group

James Bulliard

Los Feliz | Los Feliz Campus

Grades: Preschool & Kindergarten
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Adoption and Surrogacy Affinity Group

We are an adoptive family of four. Our daughter is in preschool at the ELC and our son is in kindergarten at the main campus.

The Adoption and Surrogacy Affinity Group is an opportunity for parents with adopted or surrogate children to meet up and discuss the joys and challenges of adoption and surrogacy, and to help those LILA parents who might be thinking of adopting or having a child through surrogacy. And it’s a play group for the kids!

Click here to send me an email!

Affinity Group Initiative Liaison

JC Gardiner

Montecito Heights | Los Feliz Campus

Grade: 2nd
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Affinity Group Initiative Liaison (LGBTQI+ Affinity Group, LatinE Affinity Group, Black Affinity Group, Parents of Neurodiverse Children Group & Adoptive & Surrogate Family Group)

We are the Abbey family, JC, Michael and our imaginative adopted son, Alder. We love fun adventures in nature, exploring art and design and savoring diverse cuisines. We’re a tight-knit family that thrives on love, togetherness, and a taste for the extraordinary and cherishing every moment.

As Affinity Group Liaison, my primary focus is to empower and support each of our Affinity Groups within the LILA community. Our goal is to foster vibrant and inclusive communities where all children and families can come together and celebrate our diverse backgrounds as one of our greatest strengths. 

Our commitment to creating proud and safe spaces for our families and students is paramount. These spaces serve as vital community connections, cultural resources, and confidence builders. We recognize that a strong sense of belonging is crucial for the well-being and success of our students and their families. Therefore, we are dedicated to nurturing an environment where everyone feels valued and respected.

Click here to send me an email!

Latine Español Affinity Group

Ivette Garcia

Silver Lake | Los Feliz Campus

Grades: 4th and 1st
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Latine Español Affinity Group

My mother-in-law says we’re a very loud family…

This is a group for those of Spanish, Hispanic, and/or Latin American origin, including everyone who identifies as Latin/a/e/o/x. We embrace diversity within the Spanish-speaking community and welcome everyone who identifies as part of such a culturally, racially, and ethnically varied group whether they speak Spanish or not. Allies are welcome too!

Click here to send me an email!

Asian Affinity Group

Runmin Gao

Arcadia | Pasadena Campus

Grades: 4th and 1st
Campus: Pasadena
Affinity Group: Asian Affinity Group

We are a native Chinese family with a passion for learning different cultures.

The history of Asian Americans is both triumphant and tragic, and integral to the American experience, but most notably, it is not well known in the mainstream.

The Asian Affinity Group’s mission is:
1. To provide an environment that supports and nurtures our children’s development of their Asian American identity.
2. To dispel simplistic perspectives and stereotyping by bringing awareness that the Asian American community is a broad spectrum of influential figures that have contributed to American history and culture in significant ways and will undoubtedly continue to do so.

Click here to send me an email!

The Bookshelf

Edythe Repoff

Los Feliz | Los Feliz Campus

Grade: 3rd
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: The Bookshelf

Max and I have had a wonderful experience bringing up our daughter Skyler in collaboration with LILA. Skyler started as a preschooler at the ELC and is now in 3rd grade. As non-French speakers with multicultural backgrounds, we’ve valued being part of an internationally diverse and inclusive community.

The Bookshelf is an open, parent-led group that works to provide the LILA community with a monthly list of books and resources that encourage healthy identity development, disrupt racism, and support open dialogue within the community, to empower kids and parents to make LILA an inclusive safe space for everyone. We aim to bring together a group of stories that portray a variety of voices, points of view, and experiences.

Click here to send me an email!

Jewish Heritage Group

Samantha Weisman

Los Feliz | Los Feliz Campus

Grades: Pre-K and 2nd
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Jewish Heritage Group

Our family has been with LILA for 5 years and we feel very at home with the warm and welcoming community.

The Jewish Heritage Affinity Group provides a space for families with Jewish backgrounds to celebrate and learn about our similarities and differences. It creates a micro-community within the larger LILA community that allows families, and especially our children, to identify with each other and feel a connection to their own heritage as well as others who share their history and traditions.

Click here to send me an email!

Affinity Group Liaison

Melody Jiggetts

Mt. Washington | Los Feliz Campus

Grades: Elementary
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Black Affinity Group, Latine Español Affinity Group

I’m Melody Jiggetts, mother to two LILA students. What drew me to LILA was the vibrant mix of cultures represented by the student body and, as the Affinity Group Liaison, I’m happy to help the school’s mission of embracing diversity by amplifying the voices of affinity group members.

I am passionate about helping the school community because I strongly believe in the importance of representation. Seeing diversity in our students, families, and staff is crucial for creating a strong and inclusive community.

Click here to send me an email!

Middle Eastern Affinity Group

Katayoun Hajiannia

Encino | West Valley & Burbank Campuses

Grades: K, 6th and 7th
Campuses: West Valley and Burbank
Affinity Group: Middle Eastern Affinity Group

My husband and I are originally from Iran. We are a family with three young boys. My youngest started kindergarten at West Valley, and the older ones are now enjoying 6th and 7th grade at Burbank. We are an active family in sports and participate in additional extracurricular after-school programs. We love traveling, adventure, and we treasure the memories we have made along the way.

This is a group for those who have cultural, ethnic, or geographical ties to the Middle East – a diverse region encompassing countries in Western Asia and parts of North Africa – or connected to these cultures through marriage. The group aims to celebrate its rich cultural, historical, and linguistic diversity. It offers off-campus cultural activities and discussions.

Click here to send me an email!

Private School Village Ambassador

Angélique Cinélu

Lake Balboa | Los Feliz Campus

Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Black Affinity Group

Our Angelino family is part Mid West, East Coast, Parisian and West Indian. We’re a musical family that cares deeply about healthy equity. We speak English and sometimes French in our home.

As the Private School Village Ambassador, I work directly with the Black Affinity Group to connect our community to the broader Los Angeles society of Black and Brown private school students.

Click here to send me an email!

Latine Español Affinity Group

Federico Enriquez

Glendale | Los Feliz Campus

Grade: Kindergarten
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Latine Español Affinity Group

Greetings! We are the Enriquez Leniek family, and this marks our inaugural year at LILA! Originally from Argentina, we lived in Costa Rica and Mexico before coming to the US. Our lives happen somewhere between US, Mexico and Argentina and our blessings include two cherished pieces of Mexico: our daughter Olivia and our pug, Nandita. We’re delighted to make connections with all of you!

This group provides a space for members to celebrate their cultural heritage, discuss issues relevant to the Latinx community, and promote cultural awareness and appreciation. Activities will include cultural events and pop up gatherings aimed at fostering a sense of unity and support among Latinx families within the school community.

Click here to send me an email!

Black Affinity Group

Siwatu Moore

Altadena | Pasadena & Burbank Campuses

Grades: Preschool and 6th
Campuses: Pasadena and Burbank
Affinity Group: Black Affinity Group

We are New York transplants who have come to love the West Coast (mostly, though we miss the Caribbean food). We arrived in 2019 and have found the LILA community to be incredibly welcoming and helpful. Our two girls love doing everything from weekends at the beach to school trips out to Joshua Tree. The last two years we’ve really been able to set our roots as things have opened back up. We’re excited to see what the future brings.

I am co-leader of the Black Affinity Group. Our mission is to create a space for black students and their families to navigate the challenges of the minority experience. In addition we plan to advise and work with LILA leadership to further realize the institution’s commitment to inclusion.

Click here to send me an email!


Marguerite de Bourgoing

West Adams, LA | Los Feliz Campus

Grade: Kindergarten
Campus: Los Feliz
Affinity Group: Allyship Book Club

Hello, I am Marguerite, one third of an Afro-Brazilian French family. I am the French component, with a slight British touch 🙂

During the pandemic, I was fascinated to learn that one child out of two in California is born from a foreign parent. Thanks to LILA, I’m grateful that I am able to raise my son Joaquim (KA), L.A. born and raised, in an international and multilingual environment. As a white woman, what drew me to LILA allyship club is sharing my ongoing interest in the intersection of arts, culture and identity. This is a journey in the making and I look forward to growing with my LILA cohorts as I go along.

Click here to send me an email!


Questions about DEI at LILA? Head to our DEI webpage and read our DEI Charter by clicking the button below.