Who We Are

With nearly 70 years of combined experience in non-profit executive leadership, strategic planning, and fund development, BuildingBlox consultants are able to share lessons from the trenches and best practices from the field.


Our team includes:

Nate Levine


Nate founded BuildingBlox Consulting in 2006 after serving as Executive Director of the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco, Director of Development at Stanford Law School, and Chief Operating Officer at the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco. Nate has had extensive experience in management including responsibility for a 300+ person staff and an operating budget of $25 million. He has been responsible for the fundraising efforts for more than $2 billion in his career. Nate holds a B.S. degree from Antioch College and an M.S. degree from Cornell University. When not meeting with clients or rapidly responding to their emails, Nate can be found playing guitar in his Old Time band, The Wronglers.


Charlene Akers

Senior Consultant

Charlene’s 15-year career in museum development and public relations includes Associate Development Director of the UC Berkeley Art Museum and founding Development Director of the Bay Area Discovery Museum. After leaving the non-profit world to pursue a career in writing she wrote five non-fiction books published by Heyday Books and Lucent Press, newspaper articles, introductions and poetry. She also co-founded the naming company WordSalad. Charlene has advanced degrees in Spanish Literature and Comparative Literature from the University of California at Berkeley.


Andy Kastner


Andy comes to BuildingBlox with more than 10 years of diverse executive experience serving nonprofit and philanthropic organizations. His work has focused on change management, place-based strategic grantmaking, and fundraising, building cross sector social impact initiatives domestically and abroad. Andy received rabbinic ordination from Yeshivat Chovevei Torah and holds a B.A. from Indiana University. Outside of work, Andy enjoys making plant-based meals for his family and is an avid long-distance adventurer.


Barbara Lundquist

Analyst and Research Specialist

Barbara comes to BuildingBlox after 16 years as a Technical Writer for Oracle and Sun Microsystems. She is a certified Salesforce Administrator and has worked for Jewish Vocational Services SoCal, helping them analyze data and write grant reports for their Veterans’ First employment program.  Previously, Barbara worked as Program Manager for Young Audiences of Minnesota and as a school teacher, teaching music to grades K-12 in Illinois and Minnesota. Barbara has a B.A. degree in Music Education from St. Olaf College. She’s served on the Board of the Bay Zen Center in Oakland. Currently, she volunteers as a librarian at First Church Berkeley, where she also participates in their Mental Wellness ministry. She likes reading a little bit of everything and relaxing with her cat.


Nancy Monnig

Business Manager & Consultant

Nancy comes to BuildingBlox with over ten years of diverse non-profit experience. With a degree in Social Work from Xavier University, she spent two years as a caseworker for abused and neglected youth. Most recently, Nancy was a consultant at Heller Consulting working with clients to optimize their use of Raiser’s Edge®, a premier donor database. As Development Associate for the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco, she focused on special events, database management, direct mail campaigns and its capital campaign. Nancy previously served on the Board of Directors for Bay Area Wilderness Training. Her hobbies include gardening, sewing, knitting, and figuring out new ways to make her daughter laugh.


Gabriel Larsen Santos


Gabe joined BuildingBlox after graduating with a degree in History from the University of Colorado Boulder, where he worked as a reporter for the CU Independent, a student-run news publication. Since moving to San Francisco he has volunteered for La Raza Community Resource Center and the SF Pathways to Citizenship Initiative. When not at work, Gabe enjoys writing letters, reading classics and spending time with his family.