Our Board

At the December 4th Annual Meeting of the Affiliates in the Desert, our Board for 2022 was elected.

Meet our Board of Directors


Ricardo Robles

Ricardo is a founding member and Vice President of the LA Phil Affiliates in the Desert. As a music enthusiast, he believes that bringing classical music to the youth of the Coachella Valley will help both the individuals themselves and the community as a whole, and quoting Gustavo Dudamel, “music is a fundamental human right.” He has directed all of his efforts to working on the Affiliates in the Desert agenda to advance the Los Angeles Philharmonic educational programs.

He has always been committed to helping others through his involvement in Rotary Clubs, most notably when he served as Club President from 1993 to 1994. He is also a strong supporter of youth education, which brought him to be a member of the St. Theresa School Board in Palm Springs where he served as president of the Board for two terms.

Ricardo Robles is based in Indio with 30 years of experience in business management. His company currently represents global food manufacturers in the
Coachella Valley.

Vice President

Bractzo Ibáñez

Bractzo is a firm believer in the transformational power of education and arts and serves currently as a Director-at-Large for the LA Phil Affiliates in the Desert.
For the last 21 years Bractzo has been working to help Latino communities have better education opportunities through social labor and seminars, and through his work as president in the following organizations:

• California Association for Bilingual Education (CABE- chapter 91), period 2017-2018
• DELAC (District English Learners Advisory Committee PSUSD) 2015 – 2017
• Head Start Parent Policy Council (Riverside County Office of Education) Chairman 2012-2013


Rick Seeley

Now as the Treasurer of the Affiliates in the Desert, Rick’s more than 25-year support of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Hollywood Bowl has taken on new meaning. He is a community champion and philanthropist.

Rick also serves as the president of the Palm Springs Cultural Center. The cultural center incubates, produces and encourages arts and cultural programs to leverage the unique power of creativity to open minds, bridge what divides us, and discover what connects us. In this capacity, Rick has an avid interest in developing exposure to the arts for lower income residents in the community.

The Affiliates in the Desert is the perfect progression in the common thread of his career of promoting economic and cultural diversity and equality in all aspects of business and the arts. Rick holds a bachelor’s degree in business management from the University of Redlands and has done post- graduate work at the University of Michigan. He retired from Southern California Gas Company in 2016 after a 33- year career of increasing responsibilities culminating in his tenure as the Director of Procurement and Supplier Diversity.

As a fourth generation Southern Californian, Rick is a founding and continuing director of the Long Beach Heritage Foundation. He is also vice-president of Build
Out California, the world’s first LGBT trade organization focused on leveling the playing field in construction industry procurement opportunities.


David Freedman

In addition to serving as Secretary of the LA Phil Affiliates in the Desert, David is a member of the Palm Springs Sustainability Commission and Chair of the Community Advisory Committee of Desert Community Energy, which provides electricity to Palm Springs residences and businesses.

David is a long-time supporter of performing and visual arts organizations in Palm Springs, Los Angeles and elsewhere and has hosted several events for Affiliates in
the Desert. He credits his love for classical music to the music education he received when he was young, including regular attendance at Philadelphia Orchestra youth concerts. David’s goal for Affiliates in the Desert is to bring the same experiences to the youth of the Coachella Valley and help develop the next generation of classical music lovers.

Following a 30-year career as an international corporate lawyer in New York and Paris, David Freedman retired to Palm Springs in 2015 and began a new career as volunteer environmental activist and advisor on nonprofit governance.

Membership Officer

Madalina Garza

As the Membership Officer of the LA Phil Affiliates in the Desert, Madalina looks forward to collaborating in creating a community outreach marketing strategy to reach new members in our area as well as supporting programs that will enable youth here in the Valley to take advantage of the life-changing opportunity that this organization aims to provide.

Madalina is a Web Developer, Digital Marketing Strategist and Creative Director at Garza Creative Media. She has spent the last eight years helping brands, organizations, and individuals make an impact with their digital presence and knows how to build brands that make a deep and meaningful connection with their audience, adding a personal and human touch to what can otherwise seem like a daunting and confusing technical sphere. Her clients include non-profit organizations, government commissions, religious organizations, educational institutions, fashion brands, podcasters, conference organizers and small business owners.

She has participated as a Business and Digital Etiquette mentor with the Women Leaders Forum of the Coachella Valley (WLF) and the Palm Springs Unified School District, and is a member of the PS ModCom Education Committee, which oversees the PS ModCom Scholarship Program and helps develop School Programs focused on architecture and preservation for local schools.

At Large

Chuck Steinman

Chuck is the most recently elected Board Director of the LA Phil Affiliates in the Desert. Soon after joining the Affiliates he volunteered to design and produce our first two newsletters. He is a concert subscriber at the LA Phil and Palm Springs Friends of the Philharmonic series.

His volunteer background includes the Palm Springs Art Museum where he was an Ambassador at the Architecture and Design Center of which he was a Founder and served on the A+D Council as Vice Chair for Programs. Also, he co-edited the Museum Service Council’s newsletter and arranged day tours and talks. Back East, he serves as Vice Chair of the Truro Historical Commission and is Board Chair of the Friends of the Truro Meeting House.

Chuck’s professional experience includes 14 years with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill in the Washington, DC and Boston urban design offices. He later joined the Boston
office of a Saudi-based firm to manage design-build interiors projects in Bahrain and London. Before retiring he served as a founding and managing partner for an
interior design firm specializing in senior communities and elder care projects. He has master degrees in urban planning and business management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Now retired, he spends most of the year in Palm Springs and summers on Cape Cod, MA.

At Large

Mike Napoli

Mike is the Founding President of the LA Phil Affiliates in the Desert. He has also served on the board of the following performing arts organizations: American Youth Symphony, Steinway Society of Riverside County and Waring International Piano Competition. He is also Executive Director of Performing Arts LIVE where he works with dozens of Performing Arts organizations throughout Southern California on strategic and marketing issues.

He is passionate about the performing arts and the education of the next generation of performing artists. In addition, Mike is the President of the Tech Coast Angels in the Inland Empire. Here he works with early stage start-up companies in their pursuit of success. In the past,

Mike has worked for several banking and institutional money management organizations including Bankers Trust Company, Drexel Burnham Lambert and Wilshire

At Large

Steve Weiner

Steve has an outstanding reputation in the arena of health care strategic affiliations, mergers, and acquisitions. He has led initiatives involving mergers of nonprofit providers, including community hospitals and academic center-based systems; acquisitions of nonprofits by for-profit companies, including private equity firms; joint ventures and partnerships among for-profit and nonprofit entities; and strategic realignments within academic medical systems among medical schools, academic medical centers and faculty practice plans.

Steve has also facilitated the introduction of new and less costly care delivery alternatives, including the integration of retail clinics into pharmacy providers. He has worked on Massachusetts health care reform, helped form the regulatory structure for Dubai Healthcare City, and undertaken several medical travel initiatives. Steve also serves as board chair for a major national charitable patient assistance foundation.

Steve is the founding chair of Mintz’s Health Law Practice. He has over 30 years of experience in the health care field as a policy maker, educator, and attorney. He represents health care services providers and new technology companies in a broad array of legal matters, including strategic positioning; payer strategies; clinical integration initiatives; mergers, acquisitions, strategic affiliations, “demergers,” and joint venture arrangements, including arrangements between tax-exempt and for-profit organizations; and navigating complex regulatory requirements.

In Massachusetts, Steve has been very active in matters relating to the development and implementation of the Commonwealth’s signature health care reform program and in implementing the initiative to create a statewide interoperable electronic health record system, using both state and federal stimulus legislation funds.

Steve also represents health care providers in developing, monitoring, and restructuring relationships between hospitals and physicians; regulatory and reimbursement matters, including licensure, certification and determination (certificate) of need proceedings, managed care contracting, Medicare reimbursement and appeals, and Medicaid and uncompensated care pool reimbursement; fraud and abuse and Stark Law counseling; general contracting; and, for academic medical centers specifically, clinical research, conflict of interest, relationships with affiliated medical schools, and relationships with federally qualified community health centers.

He also works extensively with the US Department of Defense on matters relating to TRICARE and the operations of the US Family Health Plan program. Since its inception, Steve has served as pro bono legal counsel to the Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare, a foundation promoting compassionate care and more effective communications between patients and caregivers.

He has also participated in a number of international health care activities, including structuring the health care regulatory system for the Dubai Healthcare City, where he then served for almost ten years as a member of the licensing board, and representing a number of organizations engaged in the medical travel industry. He is a member of the Healthcare and Life Sciences Committee of the International Bar Association (IBA), where he has most recently served as Committee co-chair. In his capacity as a Committee officer he has organized and/or moderated panels at annual meetings of the IBA on topics that have ranged from comparative international strategies related to regulating drug pricing to public health issues associated with drug-resistant microbes.

Steve has been an Associate Professor of Law at Boston University School of Law; a visiting lecturer teaching a course on health care restructuring at the Yale Law School; and for many years an adjunct faculty member at Suffolk University School of Law.

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