About the Board
Brian Brandle, President
Brian Brandle is Christopher’s father and the President of the Christopher Brandle Joy of Life Foundation. Brian grew up in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey and has lived in Oakland, New Jersey since 1996 with his wife Mary and his daughter. Brian and Mary created the Foundation on April 1st, 2010, the day after Christopher lost his battle with Medulloblastoma. Brian’s vision for the Foundation is to honor Christopher’s incredible bravery and strength by ensuring the Foundation grows into an organization that truly makes a difference by funding the most valuable research and improving the lives of children and their families battling this disease.
Brian has spent his career in the automotive finance industry and has worked for several companies within this field including Volvo Finance North America, FiServ Automotive Solutions and AmeriCredit Financial Services. He has held a wide variety of positions including Senior Business Analyst, Fleet and Special Sales Manager, Dealer Relationship Manager, Assistant Region Manager and Credit Manager. Brian holds a degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Management from Montclair State University. He currently works for Volvo Car Financial Services as a Market Manager and is a member of the Bergen County 200 Club.
Lynne C. Allan, Vice President
Ms. Allan is Chief Operating Officer of Greater Hudson Bank, which has locations in Orange, Rockland and Westchester Counties in New York. She is presently Co-Chairperson of the Board of the United Way of Rockland County and is a member of the American Heart Association of the Greater Hudson Valleys Go Red for Women Business Leaders Committee. She is a past member of the Good Samaritan Hospital Foundation Miracles Committee as well as the Union State Bank Foundation.
Ms. Allan earned her Masters Degree in Corporate Communication from Iona College in New Rochelle, NY and her Bachelors Degree in finance from Siena College in Loudonville, NY. She presently resides in Oakland, N.J. with her husband and two sons.
Pamela L. Gheysen, Treasurer
Pamela L. Gheysen is Christopher’s Aunt. She is a senior corporate finance professional with over 25 years of increasingly responsible financial experience. Pamela is a Managing Director at Aareal Capital Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Aareal Bank, a leading international bank specializing in property finance. Prior to joining Aareal Capital Corporation, Ms. Gheysen held various management positions at Hypo Real Estate Capital Corporation; HypoVereinsbank; Granite Management Company and First Nationwide Bank.
Pamela has always actively volunteered her time to assist various professional and civic organizations. For the past five years, she has been an Officer of the Real Estate Lenders Association serving on the Programming, Membership, Communication and Events Committees. Pamela has been also been a member of the Co-Op Board of the building she lives in in New York City where she has held the positions of Treasurer and Vice President during 2005- 2007 and 2010-present. From 2006-2009, Pamela was a member of the Finance Committee for the Board of Directors of The Academy of the Holy Angels in Demarest, NJ. Philanthropic activities have always played an integral part of Pamela’s life. Some of her past efforts include volunteering at Valley Hospital in Ridgewood, NJ during her teen years, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center as a graduate student; The Children’s Storefront in NYC and Habitat for Humanity in Uganda during her professional years. Pamela received a B.S. in Accounting from Boston College and an M.B.A. in Finance from New York University. She resides in New York City.
Mary Clare Brandle, Secretary
Mary Clare Brandle is Christopher’s mother and Secretary of the Christopher Brandle Joy of Life Foundation. Mary has spent much of her adult life helping charitable causes. As a high school student she volunteered at both the Valley Hospital and YMCA in Ridgewood, New Jersey. Throughout her college career Mary volunteered for the Special Olympics, taught arts and crafts to elementary age students and swimming to Head Start pre-school students.
As her children entered elementary school in Oakland, she became very active in the Heights School Parent Teacher Organization and the Oakland Education Foundation. Mary served as the President of the Oakland Education Foundation in 2009-2011, an organization that raises money to help fund projects to improve Oakland’s elementary school system. Together with Christopher’s father Brian, Mary established the Christopher Brandle Joy of Life Foundation to honor Christopher’s bravery and courage. It is her hope that the Foundation will be able to assist in advancing the treatment of Medulloblastoma so that children afflicted with this disease can continue their Joy of Life.
Mary has spent her career in the employee benefits consulting industry and holds several designations as a Qualified Pension Administrator. She is currently employed as a Client Relationship Manager for Milliman, Inc. Mary attended Ithaca College where she earned a degree in Mathematics and minored in Art. Born in Chicago, she grew up in Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey and resides in Oakland with her husband Brian and their daughter.
James O’Connor, Trustee
James David O’Connor is Christopher’s uncle. He is the owner of Check M Out Security Services and Investigations, LLC. His outstanding leadership skills and business acumen have enabled Check M Out to become a very successful, rapidly growing business.
Jim worked as a Police Officer for the City of Newark, where he retired as a highly decorated Lieutenant and a Commander of Newark’s Auto Theft Task Force. Jim grew up in a family where volunteering in the community was commonplace. As an adult, the same principles have applied; Jim is an active member of the Meadowlands and Mahwah Chambers of Commerce and serves on the boards of both. He is also a member of the Bergen County 200 Club and has been responsible for organizing various charitable events for all of these organizations.
Jim considers it an honor and a privilege to serve on the board of the Christopher Brandle Joy of Life Foundation. He looks forward to bringing his experience and expertise in effective fundraising to this worthy cause. Jim lives in Mahwah, New Jersey with his wife of twenty years, Jeanette. Jeanette and Jim have two children.