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April 19, 2017 | 3:00 PM

Why We Gather

Julie Lytle Nesbit
Pegine Grayson
Ashley Fontanetta
Haley Kirk
Whittier Trust Philanthropic Services

Families today face more significant challenges to their “togetherness” than ever before. Cultural and media influences have infiltrated what was once a sacred space. Combined with the pressures and responsibilities of wealth, today’s family values seem to be hanging on by a thread. Keeping families together requires an intentional focus. Philanthropy is a tool that does as much outwardly as it does inwardly. Our experiences assisting clients in weaving philanthropy into their family fabric provides a rich array of stories of the relationship building, character development and life lessons that can be formative to a family’s identity and ensuring your family values migrate to the next generation.        


Julie Lytle Nesbit   

Julie is a Senior Vice President and Executive Director of Whittier’s Philanthropic Services Department. She oversees advisement, asset management, administration and grant-making activities for our private trust, private foundation, donor-advised fund, endowment and public charity clients. 

   As a consultant to high net worth families, senior executives, founders of companies and family offices, Julie advises clients regarding issues of formalizing their philanthropy, strategic grantmaking and involving the next generation in charitable giving. 

   Julie joined Whittier Trust with over twenty-five years of experience in the financial services and high-tech worlds. She spent fifteen years at Ernst & Young, LLP, thirteen as a partner. After holding a number of operating and leadership positions, she vested and elected an early retirement in order to pursue her true passion in philanthropy. Prior to Ernst & Young, Julie worked for XL/ DataComp, Inc. in Hinsdale, IL as a District Manager, and as a systems engineer at IBM.   

   Julie received her BS degree from the University of California, Los Angeles and has completed advanced studies at Harvard Business School and at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.


Ashley Fontanetta

Ashley provides philanthropic advisement to Whittier's high net worth clients and management services for their foundations and donor-advised funds. The Philanthropic Services team provides high touch services for clients who wish to begin a formal process of charitable giving, enhance their existing philanthropy or explore new strategies to increase philanthropic impact.

 Ashley brings to Whittier Trust a background in both financial services and nonprofit management. Prior to joining Whittier Trust, Ashley worked as a Financial Advisor at a brokerage firm where she was responsible for advising wealth management strategies for her clients and their families. Prior to that, she spent several years as the director of a nonprofit organization serving chronically-ill youth. 


Pegine Grayson

Pegine provides philanthropic advisement and comprehensive, turn-key management services for her clients’ foundations and donor-advised funds.  She advises high net worth families, senior executives, founders of companies and family offices regarding issues of formalizing their philanthropy, strategic grantmaking and involving the next generation in charitable giving.

As a Senior Vice President, Pegine brings to WTC a wealth of experience as an attorney in both private practice and nonprofit legal services.  She previously served as the Executive Director of the Western Center on Law & Poverty, a state-wide poverty advocacy organization, and as a management and Board consultant to nonprofit organizations throughout California.  She received her law degree from USC Law School, her Bachelor of Arts degree from Middlebury College and  her Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy designation from The American College.  She is trained as a mediator, and serves on the Board of Casa Treatment Center, a residential recovery center for women in Pasadena.

Haley Kirk

Haley provides grant management services for Whittier Trust Company’s foundations and donor advised funds as well as philanthropic advisement to the younger generation of our high net worth clients. Haley provides high quality and customized administrative services for many of the aspects of foundation management that our philanthropic clients often find daunting.  She also connects clients to the enjoyable part of giving, including, but not limited to, coordinating site visits and charitable events and helping them maximize philanthropic impact.

Haley earned her BA in psychology from Stanford University, where she also minored in political science. Prior to joining Whittier Trust, Haley worked at Vodafone Americas Foundation focusing on grants administration, employee engagement, and business giving strategies.  Prior to that, she worked at Cisco executing corporate social responsibility initiatives. Haley is currently pursuing her Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy designation through The American College.

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