Ronda Swenson: Founder and Executive Director
Ronda has over 20+ years experience with the foster care system, criminal justice system and education system. Ronda has worked as a criminal defense paralegal, social worker/investigator for dependency attorneys and with the Northern California Innocence Project as a Paralegal/Investigator. Ronda assisted her mother and stepfather in foster care for twenty years and shared a home with over a 100+ youth.
In addition to her career in the criminal and social service systems. Ronda has had an extensive career spanning over 25+ years in the modeling and fashion industry. She has also taught modeling & self-esteem courses, styled on photoshoots, television shows, and movies. Ronda has provided hair and make-up on sets and with a youth theater company. Lastly, she has produced countless fashion shows and events.
Ronda has a BA in Sociology, A MA in Education with a teaching credential in Sociology and has completed extensive units toward a PHD in Social Services with a specialization in Criminal Justice. Ronda is a single mother having raised her teenage daughter Macy alone. Macy is one of the main reasons for Compassion is Fashion. Ronda wants to be able to show Macy you can take your talents and use them to change lives.
Ronda started Compassion is Fashion because she has witnessed first hand the void in our systems. A void that affects the lives of the children and adults they are meant to serve. A void that she believes if we all work together we can fix.
Dorie Ravara: Office Manager
Dorie has over 20 years experience in a corporate setting, managing business operations, accounting, marketing, human resources, customer service, and information technology. Dorie's background includes growing a start up from two people to over 100 employees and creating separate departments for accounting, marketing, HR and IT.
A unique perspective Dorie brings to the table is her ability to overcome, no matter the odds. She has survived cancer while pregnant, multiple near death experiences with Anaphylaxis ( life threatening allergic reaction) and more ambulance rides and ER visits than she'd like to count. She has had many years of experience caring for a parent with Dementia and Alzheimer's as well as another parent with brain and spinal surgeries. She has served two terms as the President of the parent-teacher group at her children's elementary school and is a current member of the Pastorial Council at her church. Dorie graduated Summa Cum Laude from DeVry University with a BS in Technical Management with a speciality in Project Management in 2007 while being a full-time employee, wife and mom of two kids.
Since having cancer, she has completed 2 full marathons, 3 half marathons and 2 triathlons. Dorie was born and raised in San Francisco, California as the first American-born child of Filipino Immigrants. On Valentime's Day 1998, Dorie married her setup junior prom date after 9 1/2 years of dating. She has three children. The oldest is a 12-year old competitive Level 8 Gymnast. The second is a 10-year old actress, model, singer, and voiceover artist. The youngest is a 6-year old Tae Kwon Do martial artist. Dorie understands that all people, especially children, are one of a kind. She believes God gives every person a special gift and a role to play in the world. Being a part of Compassion is Fashion and to empower people to have better self-esteem and a positive outlook in life is a dream come true for Dorie. There is nothing compared to seeing a child beaming in self-confidence and success in achieving something that a child has worked hard to accomplish. Dorie not only wants that for her children, but for all children.
Ngim Ung-Ferrell: Marketing & Social Media Manager
Ngim is a trained Genetic Scientist with a penchant for helping others. She was born in the refugee camps of Thailand, after her family escaped the tumultuous reign of Pol Pot and the destruction of Cambodia via the Vietnam War. Later, the family was sponsored by a Catholic Diocese group and immigrated to Iowa. The cultural challenges and assimilation struggles provided Ngim with the self-confidence and empowerment needed to aspire towards something better. Through education, plus mentoring, she learned about the Human Genome Project and believed this was the future of medicine.Her desire was to help the world by discovering cures for life threatening diseases and she attended college and received her degree in Genetics. Ngim shares authorship on scientific publications and has a patent under her belt.
Most recently, Ngim took the Can Do Anything Attitude and opened her own boutique. She built the store from the ground up and acconplished a lot with very few resources. As with science, she used the store as a venue for helping others by building self-confidence and empowerment through fashion.
Compassion is Fashion aligns with Ngim's desire for helping others. She believes the tools for improving a nation are self-confidence and empowerment, tools that are often lacking for those in foster care and disadvantaged populations. Children are our future, she looks forward to helping them succeed.
Staff Bios & Board Bios Coming Soon!