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team01_bigElisia Harkins-James

Elisia set up the Barbara Seniors Harkins Foundation in 2005 to help underprivileged children in the South Dade area. This is the cause her mother had devoted her life to before she passed in May, 2005, and Elisia was determined to continue her good work. At present Elisia is traveling between Homestead, where her home is, and Los Angeles, where she teaches film to High School children. She has also produced a number of films, one of which aired on national television in July, 2008. Her goal is to return to Homestead and work for the Foundation full time.




team02_bigAlexandra Tengco

Alexandra Tengco is a freelance video editor, in addition to being the Summer Film Camp Program Director for the Foundation. She has been an integral part of the Summer Film Camp and afterschool book club since their inception, as well as launching the foundation’s first #GivingTuesday initiative in 2016. A native of Los Angeles, CA, she received her BA from the University of Santa Barbara, California in Film and Media Studies. She is also working as a teaching assistant for high school television production classes and is currently as Associate Video Producer for a women-run media company called The Tempest. Previously, Alexandra worked as a camera assistant on several projects and as an assistant editor for the global documentary, One Day on Earth. Prior to that, she shot and edited a documentary for the Los Angeles Regional Office of the U.S. Census Bureau.


Joshua James

Joshua James is a freelance photographer and business entrepreneur, still pursuing education to further his knowledge and skill as a photographer at Los Angeles Community College in Los Angeles, CA. Joshua’s passion for photography through education has led him to share his passion with kids by working with the Barbara Seniors Harkins Foundation as Director Of Photography/Video. Joshua has been extremely supportive in running the media portion of the BSHF as well as documenting the movement through his lens. Joshua’s background of growing up in one the roughest parts of Los Angeles county, Compton, California, has solidified his urge to help bring change in the inner-cities.

His background in customer service has given him the expertise to work diligently with kids in preparing them for a bright future. The BSHF is proud to have such a unique candidate supporting the movement of education. Joshua has pledged his allegiance in helping all underprivileged kids succeed by honest encouragement and sincere attention given.




Lesem Puerto

Lesem Puerto started working with the Dr. Barbara Seniors Harkins Foundation as a volunteer camp counselor for their Film Camp summer program while she studied Film and Media at UC Santa Barbara. After Lesem graduated with her BA, she began doing research and outreach for the foundation and earned the paid position of Research Assistant. Ms. Puerto’s research focuses on grant applications, community engagement, and participant outreach, and she is currently working on earning a Masters in Public Administration at Cal State Los Angeles as she enhances her skills in program coordination and nonprofit management.



Teddy Gizachew, is a Volunteer with the foundation who is responsible for our Job Blog. He is from Alexandria, Virginia, and is currently attending Virginia Tech. Teddy is a junior majoring in Electrical Engineering. He decided to major in this field because he wanted to study about how Electricity works and how it is generated. Teddy had been volunteering with Foundation for the past four years. According to Teddy, It has been a great learning experience managing the content on the Blog.