Hermelinda Sapien - President & CEO

Hermelinda Sapien

President & CEO

Marite Marlow


COO -Pascal Do

Education – Luis Aguilar

Financial Aid – Elsa Garcia de Leon

Human Resources – Yvette Galindo

IT – Ryan Nelson

Hermelinda Sapien

President & CEO

Hermelinda Sapien has served as CET President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) since 1999. Sapien has been an integral part of CET since its founding in 1967; she was the original Executive Secretary for co-founders Russell Tershy and the late Dr. Antonio Soto.

Prior to her appointment as CEO, Sapien served 18 years as Corporate Director of Human Resources. Subsequently, in 1987, she was appointed as Executive Deputy Director. Throughout her tenure, Sapien has championed funding for workforce training initiatives targeting underserved and underrepresented communities.

Hermelinda Sapien is a graduate of the Durham School of Business and the Stanford University Executive Management Program. She is a senior fellow with the American Leadership Forum.


Mohammad Aryanpour

Chief Financial Officer

Mohammad Aryanpour has served as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) since 1997. Aryanpour oversees the Fiscal Department, monitors the internal and financial auditing processes, and ensures compliance with fiscal policies and procedures.

Prior to joining CET, Aryanpour held controller positions at various non-profits and served as financial auditor for Price Waterhouse Coopers and the Marriott Corporation.

Aryanpour received his MBA and BS in Accounting from Lincoln University.


Mary Jane Smith

Director of Contracts and MIS

Mary Jane Smith has served as Director of Contracts, Planning and MIS since 2008. Smith oversees contract administration and planning, student records, data quality assurance, and the reporting of student statistics to private, state, and federal funders.

Prior to joining CET, Smith held several positions in county government where she focused on the administration and management of workforce development programs, including programs funded under the Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA) and the Workforce Investment Act (WIA). Ms. Smith received her BLA from Salem State College.


Luis Aguilar

Interim Director of Education

Luis Aguilar has served as Interim Director of Education since 2015. Aguilar joined CET in 1990 and has held several leadership positions during his tenure, including Regional Director, Center Director and Associate Corporate Director of Education. As CET’s Director of Education, Aguilar oversees curriculum development and maintenance, research and development for new programs, and the publication of the CET Student Catalog.

Aguilar received his BA in English and Spanish from San Jose State University.


Yvette Galindo

Director of Human Resources

Ms. Yvette Galindo has served as Director of Human resources since 1999. Galindo oversees the Human Resources Department and compliance with HR policies and procedures. Galindo joined CET in 1993 and held various roles prior to her position in human resources.

Before joining CET, Galindo held various positions in community services organizations including the Legal Aid Society of Santa Clara County, Mathson Middle School and Mayfair Center.

Galindo received her MA in Urban Planning from the University of California, Los Angeles and holds a BA in Community Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz.


Elsa Garcia de Leon

Director of Financial Aid

Elsa Garcia de Leon has served as Director of Financial Aid since 2010. Garcia de Leon oversees the Financial Aid Department and is responsible for ensuring compliance with federal and state financial aid regulations.

Garcia de Leon joined CET in 1997 and has held several leadership positions during her tenure. A champion of education for those that are most in need, Garcia de Leon established Plaza Comunitaria at CET, a program that offers basic literacy, elementary education and GED services to the immigrant community in San Jose.

Garcia de Leon received her MA in Counseling Psychology from Santa Clara University and holds a BLA from the National Hispanic University.


Ryan Nelson


Ryan Nelson has served as Director of Information Technology since 2016. Ryan oversees all technology operations and develops IT policies and systems to support the implementation of strategies set by upper management.

Prior to joining CET in 2009, Ryan worked for Federal Realty Investment Trust as a Network/System Administrator.
Ryan Nelson is Microsoft, Cisco, Citrix and VMware Certified. He received his BS in Computer Science from Brigham Young University.


Carlos Lopez

Director of Government Relations

Carlos Lopez joined has served as Director of Government Relations since 2000. Lopez first joined CET in 1973 and has held various leadership positions within the organization.

In 1993, Lopez was appointed by Governor Pete Wilson to help administer California’s employment and training programs. In 2000 he returned to CET as Director of Government Relations, overseeing fund development and assisting the CEO in the development of proposals, and policy papers for presentation to private, state, and federal funders.

Lopez is a veteran of the U.S. Army and received his BA in Management from St. Mary’s College.


John Diego

Program Development

John Diego has served as CET’s Director of Program Development since November 1999. Diego is responsible for providing leadership in planning, coordination, implementation and evaluating a comprehensive program development in support of the CET’s initiatives. Diego works closely with corporate directors and center directors and external agencies to identify all program development resources and is one of CET’s principal grant writers.

Prior to joining CET in 1999 and appointed by the County of Santa Barbara Board of Supervisors, Diego held the position of Executive Director for the county Job Training Network and Private Industry Council workforce development programs. He represents CET at California Workforce Association (CWA), National Council of La Raza and Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs (AFOP) and the National Skills Coalition (NSC).

Diego holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology as well as a Bachelor’s in Social Welfare and Corrections.

Board of Directors

  • Chairman, Asbjorn Osland, SJSU

  • Vice Chair, Bob Martinez, IBM

  • Treasurer, Daniel Ezquerro, SJECCD

  • Secretary, Chris Longoria, SDSU

  • Sam Ho, San Jose City/Evergreen College District

  • Oscar Lamas, Santa Clara County Office of Education

  • Greg Adams, Pepsi Bottling Company

  • Nancy Fimble, SJSU

  • Jessica Boda, Apple

  • Irene Gutierrez, San Jose City/Evergreen College District

  • Emerita Postlewait, Santa Clara Education

  • Edward Ramirez, CET Alumni, Boeing Satellite Development Center

  • Jose Romero, Intel Corporation