Patricia Abrantes | Alejandra Aguilar | Ryka Aioki | Peter Anderson | Annabel Augustin | Jennifer Bartlett | Alyce Belford | Todd Bemis | Talia Mae Bettcher | Jenny Betz | Debika Bhattacharya | Traci Bivens-Davis | Jordan Blaza | Rosalyne Blumenstein | Sharon Brown | Didra BrownTaylor | Shirley Bushnell | Army Cachero | Mother Che’la Demuir Cartier | Bijon Chanel | Neva Chauppette | Susan Cohen | Shann Collotzi | Kathleen Crawley | Barbara Crofford | Dr.Jean Davis  | Masen Davis Thomas DeBoe | Daniel Deniz | John A. Donovan | Rene Dumetz | Heather Edney | Michelle Enfield | Eric Escareno | Jennifer Felderman | Ray Fernandez | JakeFinney | Lucy Fitzgerald | Catherine Forbes | Douglas M. F ye | Joshua Glazer | Danielle Glenn-Rivera | Mario Gonzalez | Daniel Gould | Terry Grand | Darnell Anthony Green | Kurtiss Grossman | Kim Hall | Keith Heinzerling | Alison Hamilton | Matt Hamilton | Phil Hendricks | Suzy Herbert | Gennifer M. Hirano | Christopher Hucks-Ortiz | Sharon Hudson | Mark Hufford | Steven K. Hwang | Larry Hymes | Precious Jackson | Jessie Jacobson | Luc Jauregui | Danny Jenkins | Jeff Johnson | Drian Juarez | Danny Kirkcoff | Timothy Kordic | John Kowalczyk | Katrina Kubicek | Joel L. Kushner | Deborah Levan | Jules Levin | David Lisonbee | Margie Lopez | Cristina Magalhaes | Illana Mandel | David Martin | Eddie Martinez | RiKu Matsuda | Sandi McClure | Bobbi McDaniel | Rachel McLean | Elizabeth Mendia | Margaret Meriwether | Nathan Messer | Robert Miodovski | Maureen Morrissey | Shayla Myers | Cassie Najarian | Elton Naswood | Ruel Nolledo | Michael O’Connor Koy Parada | Michele Peterson | Beth Powers | Christina Quinoñez | Meghan Ralston | Cathy Reback | Caitríona Reed | Rory Reed | Brian Risley | Daniel Rivas | Alexis M. Rivera | Mike Rizzo | Isabella Rodriguez | Peggy Roman-Jacobson | Nalee Romero | Sammy Saab | Bamby Salcedo | Giselle Santana | Pearl Saracho | Alan Saruwatari | Kimberly Scott | Roger Sediles | Rita Singhal | Terra Slavin | Suzie Sostrin | Valerie Spencer | Joey Terrell | Neil Thomas | Elise Turen |
Rachel A. Tyree | Henry van Oudheusden | Rose Veniegas | Karla Wagner | Kathy Watt | Robert Weiss |
Joycelyn Whiten | Brenda Wiewel | Loretta Worthington | Truett Wright | Tim Young |

these bios are presented as they were at the time of the training. we do not update bios without the person’s request.

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Patricia Abrantes is currently the Program Director for Olympic Academy, a youth residential treatment facility under the Asian American Drug Abuse Program. She has been AADAP for almost 5 years now, and prior to this, was working with adolescent group homes, and the community health field. She obtained her Masters in Social Welfare from UC Berkeley in 1999, and her BA in Sociology in 1992 from UCSB. She is first generation Filipina and came to the US when she was 14 y/o.

Alejandra Aguilar is a Promotora and Health Educator for the East Los Angeles Women’s Center. Along with Ms. Aguilar’s extensive training in HIV & AIDS she is a certified Sexual Assault Advocate. Trough the HIV prevention Program Mrs. Aguilar provides HIV education in the community. These trainings prepare the women in the community to become HIV Promotoras, so that they can provide HIV prevention and awareness to members of their own community. Ms. Aguilar is the secretary for Alianza: The Latino Caucus on HIV/AIDS in Los Angeles County. Alejandra feels honored to be able to serve her community by providing these services in both English and Spanish.

Ryka Aioki is a chemist, poet, composer and martial artist. She has worked with the American Association of Hiroshima-Nagasaki A-Bomb Survivors, and two of her compositions have been adopted as its official “Songs of Peace.” In 2004, Ryka was honored by the California State Senate for her “extraordinary commitment to free speech and artistic expression.” Ryka has featured venues including the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Los Angeles Poetry Festival, She holds a 5th degree black belt in Judo and is a professor of English at Santa Monica College.
Peter Anderson RN, is a Nurse Practitioner at Cedars Sinai Medical Center.

Annabel Augustin started out as a client at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles. She moved from being a client to being a volunteer with the Tranny Rock Star Project (a transgender harm reduction program) before being hired as staff. She went to HIV Education and Prevention trainings while working and now she facilitates the Tranny Rock Star intervention and support groups. She is in the process of enrolling bin school to gain a higher education and continue to give back to her community.
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Jennifer Bartlett, Program Director, BREATHE California of Los Angeles (formerly the American Lung Association of Los Angeles) CONTACT:

Alyce Belford, Psychotherapist in Private Practice

Todd Bemis arrived in Los Angeles at the age of 18 as a runaway. He is a former IDU who has been involved in the harm reduction community for over 10 years as a needle exchange worker, peer advocate and case manager. He currently works at Common Ground as a prevention coordinator, where he is involved with needle exchange and outreach to injection drug users and at-risk youth.

Talia Bettcher , Ph.D. is a Professor of Philosophy at California State University, Los Angeles. She has published articles on transphobia and transphobic violence and she teaches regularly courses on the philosophy of gender. She has been actively involved in Los Angeles transgender community and grass-roots organizing for over a decade.

Jenny Betz is the Project Director for the Anti-Defamation League’s A WORLD OF DIFFERENCE® Institute. She is responsible for overseeing all of the anti-bias education projects and programs in the Pacific Southwest Region, designed to give schools and communities the tools to create bias-free environments. Before joining the ADL, Jenny worked for the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network and the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center, providing educational programming and community events to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students, teachers, administrators, families and their allies. She also developed anti-bias curriculum focused on family diversity and the needs and rights of transgender people in Boston. Jenny was recently appointed to the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Human Relations Diversity and Equity Council, sits on the Executive Committee of the California Safe Schools Coalition and also serves as a board member for FTM Alliance of Los Angeles. In addition, Jenny is a speaker for Gays and Lesbians Initiating Dialogue for Equality (GLIDE). A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in English from St. Mary’s College and her Master’s Degree in Gender/Cultural Studies from Simmons College.

Debika Bhattacharya, M.D. joined the UCLA faculty in 2006 where she specializes in the management of HIV and HIV/viral hepatitis coinfection. She has HIV clinics at the CARE Center and HIV/viral hepatitis coinfection clinics at the CARE, Olive View Medical, and the West Los Angeles Veteran’s Affair Medical Centers. Her research involves identifying the determinants of viral hepatitis outcomes in HIV coinfection, including the influence of gender.

Traci Bivens-Davis is the Director of Prevention at Common Ground-The Westside HIV Community Center. She has worked in the human services field for over twelve years emphasizing HIV prevention. Her advocacy on behalf of women of color and other vulnerable populations is realized through her leadership in L.A.’s HIV Prevention and Planning Committee, Microbicide Network and Black HIV/AIDS Consortium.

Jordan Blaza has been a transgender advocate since 1996 and currently works at the California AIDS Clearinghouse. In 2004, she started a technical assistance consultancy group, the Center for Transgender Advancement. She presented at the 2002 International AIDS conference in Barcelona, Spain, and at the U.S. Conference on AIDS from 1998 to present. She brought national acclaim to the “Bionic Woman: Transgender” poster. Through a CDC fellowship, she created a program design for a TG Center for Excellence in 2002. She was also involved in The Leadership Campaign on AIDS TG Forum with the U.S. Surgeon General’s Office in 2001. Her presentation on Men Who Have Sex with Transgenders is quoted in the Healthy People 2010: LGBT Health Companion Document (GLMA).

Rosalyne Blumenstein MSW is a national trainer for the Harm Reduction Coalition in New York City and Oakland/San Francisco , and a trainer for the National Development Research Institute. Rosalyne is the Emotional Support Services Manager, and Manager for Wendy’s Hope, a program for lesbians, bisexual women, and women of trans experience living with cancer and other life threatening illnesses. Rosalyne’s current book BRANDED T is available at

Sharon Brown, Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center

Didra BrownTaylor, Ph.D. has a BA and BS in Black Studies and Biology respectfully, from the University of the Pacific. She received graduate training in multicultural community-clinical psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology in Los Angeles and specializes in culturally appropriate research methodology for inclusion of African American and Latino participants. For more than 15 years, Dr. BrownTaylor has been a trailblazer in researching the relationships between alcohol availability, consumption, advertising and negative consequences associated with malt liquor beer drinking. Her latest areas of research focus on Alcopops. Alcosnacks, Energy Drinks and underaged drinking and alcohol (pruno/hooch) production and consumption by prison inmates. Dr. BrownTaylor completed her Post-doctoral Fellowship at UCLA’s Integrated Substance Abuse Program and is a National Institutes of Health- Health Disparities Research Scholar and is the recipient of the Los Angeles County Alcohol and Drug Program Administrators Association of California (CADPAAC) Public Policy Award for 2007. She is currently an Assistant Professor at Charles R. Drew University’s Urban Public Health Program.

Shirley Bushnell as worked tirelessly to help educate her community about issues faced on a daily basis by members of the transgender community, such as employment and housing discrimination, hate and bias crimes, domestic violence, addiction and recovery issues and access to health care. She has worked with the LA County Domestic Violence Council’s LGBT Issues Committee, as well as provided transgender training classes to service providers throughout LA County. Shirley has also been instrumental in providing transgender awareness training in law enforcement, and has provided transgender awareness training to the West Hollywood Sheriffs Department, The Los Angeles Police Community Relations Section, and Hollywood-Wilcox LAPD Station. Shirley received several awards, including the City of West Hollywood’s “Public Safety Leadership Award” and the City of West Hollywood’s Women’s Advisory Board’s “Women in Leadership” award in 2005.

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Army Cachero, CAS is a Program Coordinator for Asians and Pacific Islanders Together Overcoming Meth In our Community (ATOMIC) at Asian Pacific AIDS Intervention Team.
Mother Che’la Demuir Cartier a proven GLBT community partner established House of Cartier. Her work in the LGBTQ expands well over 20 years. The house was started to create a positive membership brotherhood/sisterhood, focusing on community awareness, mentoring, leadership and family. Over the years, the House and Ball community — largely comprised of black and Latino youth and adults who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender — has experienced substantial impact from issues such as the HIV/AIDS epidemic, drug abuse and self acceptance . As a community empowerment initiative, House of Cartier was formed in 2009 to link ballroom members with resources to improve their health outcomes, and provide workshops on HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases, empowerment. House of Cartier produces ballroom events incorporating innovative approaches to HIV prevention, and safer sex messaging.
Bijon Chanel is a leader in the West Coast chapter of the International House of Chanel. Bijon has been a ballroom member for the past eight years competing in the categories of All American Runway and Pretty Boy Realness. Within his time participating in ballroom activities he’s been able to travel to different states to compete. As a leader within the ballroom Bijon lends his helping hand for community causes by supporting and participating with local community based organizations like “In the Meantime Men’s Group, “Minority AIDS Project”, REACH LA and LA Gay & Lesbian Center. Bijon has produced several events and tries to move the ballroom forward with positive reinforcement. He is considered up and coming legend and he is reaching the heights of his career.
Dr. Neva Chauppette  is a licensed Psychologist in part-time private practice in Los Angeles. She is the full-time Project Director of a mobile medical clinic that provides free and comprehensive HIV, Hepatitis ABC, and STD services to at-risk individuals. She is the former Clinical Director of an outpatient mental health clinic for women of color with multiple morbidities (HIV, HCV, psychiatric illness and substance misuse). Dr. Chauppette is a consultant to numerous HIV and chemical dependency treatment facilities throughout several states. As a consultant, Dr. Chauppette offers psychiatric consultation regarding individual psychotherapy clients of other providers/agencies (multi-diagnosed: psychiatric illness/ HIV+/HCV+ /addiction), as well as program needs assessments, curriculum development and design, technical assistance, crisis intervention, and staff/client trainings. Dr. Chauppette provides technical assistance to the California State Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs, the California State Office of AIDS and the Los Angeles County Office of AIDS Programs and Policies. The services provided are state-wide trainings, staff consultations, and program design/implementation. She is also on the Speaker’s Bureau of several pharmaceutical companies: Abbott, Roche, Pfizer, and Boehringer Ingelheim. Dr. Chauppette has worked in the field of substance abuse and HIV since 1988. She earned her doctorate in psychology from Pepperdine University in 1992. She is licensed as a Psychologist in California.

Susan CohenMPH joined the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center in October of 2006 as the Director of Health Education & Prevention. In this capacity, Cohen oversees the operation of the Center’s health education and prevention programs, which include prevention for HIV-positive and HIV-negative communities, alcohol and other drugs outreach and education, outreach and education to transgender communities, mobile HIV/STD testing and counseling, as well as social marketing campaigns to motivate and encourage long term safer sexual practices. For the past 18 years, Cohen’s career in public health education has spanned issues related to sexual health, chemical dependency and non-profit management issues. She is a national speaker on such topics as long term behavior change, program design and evaluation, understanding sexuality development and sexual orientation, women’s sexual health, understanding sexuality and chemical dependency relapse, as well as AIDS in the workplace. In her early years of public health, Cohen worked with AIDS Project Los Angeles, where she coordinated Los Angeles County’s first sexual negotiation skills workshop for the prevention of HIV within gay male populations, drug treatment and the Los Angeles County prison system. Working at the JWCH Institute, Cohen managed the agency’s juvenile court reproductive health program, providing sexual health education to juvenile inmates throughout the county juvenile court system. During her tenure at AIDS Service Center, Cohen developed the agency’s first AIDS in the Workplace program, working with San Gabriel Valley businesses, assisting them in the integration of HIV-sensitive workplace policies, the agency’s first treatment advocacy program, and the expansion of ASC’s Speakers’ Bureau. Most recently, Cohen spent seven years at California State University, Northridge in their Student Health Service. In this capacity, she oversaw all health education and prevention programs that worked to remove health-related barriers to students’ success at the university. Cohen holds a bachelor’s degree in health education and a master’s degree in public health from California State University, Northridge. She is also a part-time professor at CSUN, with more than 13 years of college-level classroom instruction. Cohen is a native to Los Angeles and lives with her partner and two children.

Shann Collotzi is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker that has been working with transgender and HIV positive youth at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles since 2004. Shann graduated from Cal State Long Beach in the MSW program and he has been working in HIV prevention and with HIV positive individuals for the past 11 years as a case manager and a mental health therapist. He participates in the Mental Health Task Force and the Transgender Service Providers Network. Shann conducts trainings on HIV and transgender issues and has presented at local and national conferences. Currently, Shann provides individual, couples, family and group therapy for HIV positive and transgender youth and supervises 4 case managers at the Risk Reduction Program.

Kathleen Crawleyis the founder of the Procovery Institute.The mission of the Procovery Institute is to build hope, healing and LIFE through the Procovery program. The Procovery Institute was co-founded by Kathleen Crowley, creator of Procovery, and her husband Randy Stratt, and is the international purveyor of the Procovery program, providing organizations, systems and communities with implementation leadership—including assessment, consulting, training, materials, technology, best practices, coaching and support for implementing the Procovery program with fidelity and cost-effective outcomes.

Barbara Crofford, LCSW is a licensed clinical social worker who has been working in the field of HIV and AIDS for 18 years. She is currently the Clinical Supervisor at Asian Pacific AIDS Intervention Team, and is in private practice as a psychotherapist in the Culver City area. Herself a consumer of services as a woman living with hepatitis C, she is a member of the Los Angeles Hepatitis C Task Force, and a very involved volunteer with the quarterly “C-Retreat”.

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Dr. Jean Davis has a PhD in Preventive Medicine and a Masters in Clinical Research. She is certified by the American Academy of HIV Medicine as an HIV Specialist. She is a Primary Care Physician Assistant and Doctor of Chiropractic Medicine. Dr. Davis is an Assistant Professor at Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science and UCLA, Department of General Internal Medicine. Dr. Davis is a member of the County of Los Angeles, Department of Health Services Institutional Review Board. She is an HIV/AIDS Clinician at Oasis Clinic/EIP, the Co-Principal Investigator, Co-Site Director, Clinical Director and HIV/AIDS Training Specialist for the Charles Drew Site National Minority AIDS Education & Training Center (NMAETC), Pacific AIDS Education Training Center (PAETC) and LA County Minority AIDS Initiative (MAI) HRSA funded and Co-Investigator for Comprehensive Center for Health Disparities for Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) NIH Program Grant.

Masen Davis is the Executive Director of the Transgender Law Center, a civil rights organization advocating for transgender communities. Under Masen’s leadership, the Transgender Law Center has won significant legal and policy victories helping thousands of transgender people claim and uphold their fundamental civil rights; leveraged over $1 million of public funds for transgender employment programs; and launched innovative programs promoting economic empowerment, healthcare access and leadership development. Prior to joining TLC in 2007, Masen served at United Way of Greater Los Angeles as a Community Investment Officer (2001-2005) and Director of Development (2005-2007). Masen has been an activist in the movement for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality since 1990, when he started his career as the Civil Court Advocate at Horizons Community Services in Chicago. He has served in leadership roles for many organizations, including FTM Alliance (Founder & Board President, 2002-07); City of West Hollywood’s Transgender Task Force (Vice Chair, 2001-03); National Center for Transgender Equality (Vice Chair, 2005-2007); Funders for Lesbian and Gay Issues (Board Member, 2007-2010); and the San Francisco LGBT Community Center (2010-present). His research and writings on transgender issues have been published in academic textbooks and journals, including Sexual Orientation and Gender Expression in Social Work Practice, New Directions in Student Services, and the Seattle Journal for Social Justice. He received his Masters of Social Welfare with a concentration in Nonprofit Management from UCLA, and Bachelor of Arts from Northwestern University.

Thomas DeBoe, Housing Attorney has practiced law in California for more than 8 years and worked for several nonprofits including Westside Legal Services, Legal AID Foundation of L.A., Tarzana Treatment Centers, and the Minority AIDS Project. He is well known in the legal community for his expertise in housing/tenant rights and HIV/AIDS discrimination.

Daniel Deniz Prevention Director, Whittier Rio Hondo AIDS Project

Dr. John A. Donovan Keck School of Medicine, USC Chair, American Liver Foundation’s Greater Los Angeles Medical Advisory Committee

Rene Dumetz is presently pursuing a PhD in Clinical Psychology at the Pacifica Graduate Institute. He is a graduate of the LGBT specialization at Antioch University, where he learned the importance of Affirmative Psychology as a means of development and growth for the LGBT client and therapist. As a gay man of color he believes that we can all realize our innate potential if we accept and integrate all aspects of who we are. He is of mixed racial heritage and believes strongly in the importance of cultural awareness and respect for the great diversity of human experience.

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Heather Edney has developed prevention and treatment programs for substance users for over 15 years in northern and southern California, focusing on harm reduction and disease prevention for young injection drug users. She has also developed and implemented curricula for educational institutions on drug education and overdose prevention. Her national and international presentations on intervention strategies for drug users have equipped hundreds of health care workers to more effectively work with their clients and patients. Currently, Ms. Edney is the Director of Marketing at Cri-Help as well as the coordinator of the Los Angeles Overdose Prevention Task Force.
Michelle Enfield is of the Red Running Into the Water people Clan (Tachii’nii ), born for the Black Streak Wood People clan (Tsi’naajinii), her maternal grandfather’s clan is of the Near The Water clan (Tó’áhaní), her paternal grandfather’s clan is of the Bitter Water clan (Todich’ii’nii), this is how she is Navajo, Dine. She is originally from Lukachukai, Arizona but now resides in Los Angeles, California. Ms. Enfield has attended the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico; and Diné Community College in Tsaile, Arizona studying Fine Arts. Currently, she is at Los Angeles Community College studying Humanities as a UCLA transfer student. Working with the Los Angeles homeless youth since 2008 has given her a first-hand experience of working with underprivileged populations. In 2009, she began volunteering as an HIV test counselor and began her career working with underserved populations at risk for HIV infection. Currently, she is a Training Specialist with the Red Circle Project at AIDS Project Los Angeles and works specifically with the Native American population; by providing HIV education, support and referrals. She is also a council member of Project H.E.A.L.T.H. (Harnessing Education Advocacy and Leadership for Transgender Health), co-chair of the Transgender Service Provider Network (TSPN); member of the Asian Pacific Islander/Native American Coalition and also sits on the L.A. County HIV Prevention Planning Committee (PPC).

Eric Escareno Bio unavailable

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Jennifer Felderman, MA, Adult Viral Hepatitis Prevention Coordinator for the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health. As the Adult Viral Hepatitis Coordinator, Ms. Felderman makes recommendations for the solution of problems for the Department of Public Health regarding adult viral hepatitis in Los Angeles County and collaborates across Public Health programs regarding hepatitis: 1) education and training; 2) prevention and outreach; 3) advocacy and community planning; 4) screening, testing and surveillance; and 5) counseling, care and treatment activities.

Ray Fernandez is currently the coordinator for Aids Project Los Angeles’ Mpowerment Program, a program for YMSM ages 13-24. It is a multi-ethnic project open to all ethnicities. The program seeks to reduce risk behavior via the creation of strong social networks that encourage harm reduction and the building of better communication and negotiation skills. Ray has served in this position for the last 4 years. His educational background is in Ethnic and Gender Studies with a concentration in cross-cultural Studies.

Jake Finney Bio unavailable

Lucy Fitzgerald HALSA Bio unavailable

Catherine Forbes is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Clinical Researcher in the Division of Adolescent Medicine, Childrens Hospital Los Angeles where she currently provides psychotherapy for teens and young adults. In addition, she is currently a supervisor on a CDC funded project developing and implementing a locally developed HIV intervention program for transgender youth (TG-AIM: Transgender Adult Identity Mentoring) and a team member on another CDC funded project updating and packaging an HIV prevention program (Project AIM: Adult Identity Mentoring) for national use with diverse, urban youth in community settings. Dr. Forbes received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology with a focus on child and community psychology from the George Washington University in 2003. She completed her pre-doctoral internship at Didi Hirsch Community Mental Health Center in Culver City, CA and completed a 2-year post-doctoral fellowship in adolescent mental health in the Division of Adolescent Medicine at CHLA in 2005. She has been working with transgender and HIV+ youth in the Risk Reduction Program at CHLA for more than 3 years. Dr. Forbes has presented her clinical and research work at numerous local and national conferences and recently co-authored a qualitative study on transgender youths’ use of services (Corliss, Belzer, Forbes, & Wilson, 2007).

Douglas M. Frye, M.D., M.P.H. Deputy Director, HIV Epidemiology Program, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health

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Joshua Glazer is an LA-based music and culture writer and editor. Having discovered writing as a founding staff member of Real Detroit Weekly—covering everything from local band The White Stripes to Detroit techno—Josh relocated to Los Angeles in 2003 and began working for URB Magazine, one of America’s longest running independent music publications. He continues to write regularly for outlets such as Coachella CAMP Magazine, LA Weekly, Shockhound, Suicide Girls, Mixmag Brazil, iTunes and more. He has also promoted hundreds of dance music events in Detroit and Los Angeles and performs regularly as half of DJ duo Mid City West. Josh was recently a member of the LA County Rave Task Force, Harm Reduction and Education workgroup.

Danielle Glenn-Rivera (Osage/Cherokee) has advocated for the health and well-being of American Indians and provided cultural awareness training in the Los Angeles area for over twenty-two years. She was a counselor at the Indian Center Inc. Domestic Violence Shelter, later she supervised the Southern California Indian Center (SCIC) JTPA office in North Hollywood. In 1990, as Program Coordinator of SCIC’s Tobacco Control Program, she created, initiated, designed, developed, and implemented a culturally appropriate American Indian Tobacco Control program. The materials promoted American Indian tribal, sacred and traditional tobacco use, and opposed the non-traditional, commercial abuse of tobacco. In 1993 Ms. Glenn-Rivera as a Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (DHS) Tobacco Control Program Community Education Specialist, she reviewed materials, provided technical assistance, education/prevention classes, organized health fairs and other events for community-based organizations and communities in Los Angeles. As a member of the California DHS American Indian Tobacco Education Network Board (AITEN) she chaired Policy committee. As Health Program Coordinator in the Los Angeles County DHS Health and Faith Project, she organized networks, information, outreach, prevention/education, and referrals with American Indian churches and organizations, and community faith organizations in Los Angeles and other areas. Danielle chaired the American Indian AIDS Council (AIAC) since 1996. AIAC, was the first American Indian organized group of community members to advocate for American Indian HIV/AIDS issues in Los Angeles. AIAC, attained an American Indian HIV+ seat on the Los Angeles County Commission on HIV Health Services (CHHS). Danielle, substituted for the American Indian rep and Co-chaired the CHHS Recruitment, Diversity and Bylaws Committee for two terms. She was on the Los Angeles County CDC Prevention and Planning Committee (PPC) Policies/Best Practices Committee. She also Co-chaired the California State Office of AIDS Multicultural Liaison Board (MLB). Danielle has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Oklahoma, where she also completed graduate courses in Ed. Psych/Counseling. She finished graduate courses in Movement Therapy at UCLA. She has a Chemical Dependency Specialist Certificate and certificates in various areas of health, including HIV/AIDS, Diabetes, and FASD. In 2005 she attended an FASD Center for Excellence training and attended other FASD trainings since then. She provides FASD training for the American Indian community. As a Co-convener of the Los Angeles County American Indian Children’s Planning Council (AICC), she co-chaired the Indian Child Welfare Act workgroup and also co-chaired the Safety/Survival committee at SPA 2/CPC. She was a volunteer at the Rape Crisis/Valley Trauma Center, a member of the LA County Native American Indian Commission, and Interim President of the California Indian Education Association. She’s a member of the Los Angeles Indian Child Welfare Advisory Board, the Advisory Board for American Indian Studies at CSUN, and recently the FASD Center for Excellence American Indian/Alaska Native /Native Hawaiian Expert Panel. Ms. Glenn-Rivera works at the Los Angeles County Public Health, Substance Abuse Prevention and Control department.


Daniel Gould, MSW Health Network Coordinator Teaches: Psychology at Antioch University Brings organizations together to set health priorities for the LGBT community in California. Master’s degree in social welfare from UCLA. With over 16 years’ work in health and social services, Daniel co-founded and managed health programs for FTMA of Los Angeles and is a member of the California Center of Excellence for Transgender HIV Care Advisory Board.

Terry Grand MD , founder of ACT UP for HIV activism

Darnell Anthony Green has been advocating for people with HIV/AIDS and speaking out on issues concerning Black and Latino men who have sex with men (MSM) since 2001. Prior experience includes; Brother 2 Brother Youth Mentorship, The AIDS Taskforce of Cleveland, Mazzoni Center LGBT Healthcare and Wellness, and The COLOURS Organization both in Philadelphia. Darnell has lent his creative talents to Art Action AIDS and “Da Real Tea”, a social marketing campaign which won The National Football League Award for social service, and was presented at The Ryan White Conference. Darnell is excited to be the Many Men Many Voices (3MV) Program Coordinator/Facilitator for the LA Gay and Lesbian Center. He feels that it’s time for MSM of color to be visible and vigilant.


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Kim Hall is a Treatment Educator Advocate for Tarzana Treatment Center. She is also a Registered Addiction Specialist through CAARR INSTITUTE; a Certified HIV Prevention Counselor; and a Certified Treatment Educator. She has worked for Tarzana Treatment Center for the past 6 years, specifically in Treatment Education for the past 4 years.

Keith Heinzerling MD, MPH is an Assistant Professor in the UCLA Department of Family Medicine and Medical Director of the UCLA Substance Abuse Pharmacotherapy Unit. His research and clinical focus is on the discovery, development, and dissemination of anti-addiction medications. He has a primary care-based Addiction Medicine practice at the UCLA Family Health Center. Dr. Heinzerling is a graduate of the Stanford University School of Medicine and the NYU/Bellevue Internal Medicine/Primary Care program, where he was a Chief Resident in Medicine.

Alison Hamilton, Ph.D. is an Associate Research Anthropologist in the Department of Psychiatry at UCLA and a Research Health Scientist at the West Los Angeles VA. She received her Ph.D. in anthropology from UCLA in 2002, and her M.P.H. in Community Health Sciences from UCLA in 2009. Dr. Hamilton currently has a Career Development Award from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to study women methamphetamine users and sexuality. At the VA she does mental health services research, particularly in severe mental illness and co-occurring disorders. Her areas of specialty are substance abuse, sexuality, mental health, women’s health, evaluation research, and health services research,


Phil Hendricks has been working in the field of HIV/STD prevention education for the past 10 years. He specializes in risk reduction education for high-risk gay and bisexual men. He has run prevention programs in Seattle and Los Angeles. Hendricks has served on community advisory boards for both the HIV Vaccine Trials Network and the HIV Prevention Trials Network. He has also served on the board of directors for POZ Seattle, a grassroots HIV-positive social support network. He currently serves as coordinator of the Crystal Meth Program at AIDS Project Los Angeles. The program provides interventions for friends, lovers and family members who are concerned about a loved one’s crystal meth use, as well as providing risk reduction counseling for active crystal meth users.

Suzy Herbert has been clean and sober for the past 11 years following many years of substance abuse, specifically alcohol and crystal meth. Her personal experience and the assistance she received aroused in her a passion to help others in a similar plight. Suzy’s experience includes advocating for the homeless, working in the HIV+ community, and assisting mothers at risk of losing custody of their children due to substance abuse related issues. She’s also very active in the recovery community. Suzy is currently the Outreach Coordinator for Herbert House, a co-ed sober living on the west side of Los Angeles. In addition, she serves as Board Secretary for the Sober Living Coalition, is a member of the Westside Crystal Meth Coalition, and is an active volunteer for the Westside Shelter and Hunger Coalition. She has volunteered with Chrysalis in their Women’s Empowerment program and with Women at Risk as Event Coordinator for their annual fundraiser. Suzy is currently attending Loyola Marymount University’s Extension Program to become certified in Reality Therapy and also in their Drug and Alcohol Counseling Program.

Gennifer M. Hirano, M.Ed. is the Director of Sex Workers Outreach Project in Los Angeles. (SWOP-LA) SWOP-LA is a peer based sex worker empowerment advocacy and outreach group that is relatively new to LA. They offer HIV prevention and testing, violence prevention, advocacy and education. She is a social justice educator and has worked on sex worker rights issues for 10 years.

Christopher Hucks-Ortiz, M.P.H. is a Project Director and currently works primarily out of our clinical research site on Vine Street in Hollywood where he oversees or consults on multiple studies. He currently manages an NIH/DAIDS funded study (HPTN 061) to determine the Feasibility of Conducting a Community-Level, Multi-Component Intervention for Black men who have sex with men. He also manages a NIDA-funded study (SATH-CAP) to assess the transmission of HIV and other STIs within drug using networks, and from drug users to non-drug users.

Dr. Sharon Hudson received her PhD in Preventive Medicine from the University of Southern California in 1998. For the past eight years, she has worked as a behavioral scientist for the Health Research Association. Dr. Hudson’s work focuses on HIV prevention among high risk populations, including men who have sex with men (MSM) and substance users. She is the principal investigator on a CDC-funded HIV prevention study for substance-using MSM. She has also been funded by the California HIV/AIDS Research Program to conduct two studies focusing on young MSM and crystal meth.

Mark Hufford, Substance Abuse Counselor, Twin Town Treatment Centers

Steven K. Hwang, MD, Assistant Medical Director with the Los Angeles County Tuberculosis Control Program B.A., Magna Cum Laude, U.C. San Diego, 1991; M.D., Saint Louis University School of Medicine, 1995; residency in internal medicine at UCSF-Fresno Medical Education Program, 1998 infectious diseases fellowship at UCLA-Affiliated Hospitals Program in Infectious Diseases, 2000.

Larry Hymes [MFT #48870] is a licensed Marriage, Family Therapist registered with the Board of Behavioral Sciences. He received his M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University, with a specialization in Community Psychology. He is also is member of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT), and past Board Member of the Lesbian and Gay Psychotherapists Association of Southern California. Larry has worked extensively with youth, first within LAUSD, and then with Gay & Lesbian Adolescent Social Services (GLASS). He currently works as a therapist at The Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center counseling both adults and youth, and also at Homeless Healthcare Los Angeles (HHCLA) working with the addicted homeless population.

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Precious Jackson is an HIV+ activist, treatment educator and public speaker. In her position as the Women’s Health Educator for the Center for Health Justice she manages the Women’s Program which allows her to work directly with HIV infected and at-risk women in CRDF (Century Regional Detention Facility) of the Los Angeles County Correctional Facilities. Precious currently serves on the California HIV/AIDS Planning Group. She is also a member of the AIDS Treatment Activists Coalition’s Drug Development Committee (ATAC). The Center for Health Justice empowers people affected by incarceration and HIV to make healthier choices and advocates for the elimination of disparities between prisoner health and public health. To achieve our mission, we advocate for HIV+ prisoners and provide HIV/AIDS, STD and Hepatitis education and treatment information to prisoners in California and throughout the United States.
Jessie Jacobson has been a Marriage and Family Therapist intern in private practice as a Gender Specialist; as well as an associate professor in Graduate Psychology at Antioch University Los Angeles. She also works as a Professional Life and Transition Coach at Gender Help. She specializes in TransWomen and TransMen, Gender Variant and LGBT clients as well as with the non-LGBT population. Jessie was trained then employed as the first transsexual Mental Health Clinician by the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center (the largest LGBT organization in the world) in 2002. She received her M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University L.A. in 2003. She has moderated TransWomen’s Therapy Groups as well as individual, couples and family therapy both at the Center through 2008 as well as in private practice more recently as a Life Coach, working with hundreds of clients during that time. Jessie is also a professional lecturer on Trans, mental health issues and diversity training, and is a teacher at Antioch University L.A. as well as serving on the board of Antioch’s LGBT Graduate Psychology Specialization, the first such specialization in the world. Additionally, Jessie has appeared on radio and television (Showtime, Discovery Health Channel, PBS, etc.) regarding Trans issues and psychology. She also works as a private and corporate consultant specializing in gender variant and LGBT matters for agencies such as Vista Del Mar, Tarzana Treatment Center, Didi Hirsch Jump Street, among others. Jessie has also been a strong political advocate for Trans social and human rights issues, as well as more general LGBT concerns.

Danny Jenkins co-chairs the Hepatitis C Task Force for L.A. County, and is living with Hep C. He has designed and initiated health-related prevention and treatment programs for people living with HIV and youth populations which are still recognized and replicated as effective, cost efficient and compassionate service models.

Jeff Johnson For 20 years Jeff worked in the business world as both a corporate executive (managing 180 employees) and small business owner (with 17 employees). During this tenure, Jeff earned a reputation as a business turn around specialists and customer satisfaction index improvement expert. Jeff has been recognized with District and National Awards for these efforts. Jeff left the corporate world to start and operate two successful businesses which he sold as part of a life change. Jeff has served as a part-time para-professional and full time professional working with families in reunification efforts with and without substance abuse issues. Jeff has been a Program Director and Board Member for women with children with substance abuse issues, facilitated training seminars on family reunification and substance abuse. Recently, he assisted in the Orange County drug court developing policy and programs integrating wraparound services with DCFS. He has also lived in a Transitional Age Youth Homeless Shelter as a manager/counselor. Jeff presently is the facilitator for the Rio Hondo Intensive COD program under the MHSA Wellness Center Program. The COD Program model is being used as a model for all LACDMH COD programs, receiving an award from DMH for Outstanding Co-Occurring Disorder Services, the Wellness Group Health Lifestyles is an L.A. County Stars award winner for June 2007, and the Wellness Center is the LACDMH 2007 Employee Group of the Year. Jeff earned an MSW, has completed one year of Law School, is married with four children (mostly grown), and two dogs (still growing). Jeff is a private pilot, scuba diver, scratch golfer (he scratches off his score after each hole), and loses at Play Station 3 games with the kids.

Drian Juarez is currently the Program Manager for the LA Gay and Lesbian Center’s Transgender Economic Empowerment Project; the only program in all of Los Angeles assisting the transgender community with employment issues and economic health. Juarez graduated from Otis College of Art and Design with a BA in Fine Art and began advocating for the transgender community in 05 as Lead Health Educator for a non-profit in the West Hollywood/Hollywood area. During this time she was able to increase her activism by becoming a member of the West Hollywood Transgender Advisory Board (formally the West Hollywood Transgender Taskforce) and was elected by this group in 09 to design and compose an original poem inscribed on Transgender Memorial Plaque which was erected at Mathew Shepard Triangle in West Hollywood; the only plaque in the nation to commemorate the lives of trans people who have passed due to hate crimes and violence. She also became a member of the Transgender Service Provider Network and was invited to become a board member of the Female to Male Alliance in 07 and worked to redesign the mission statement of this local nonprofit, the only one in all of Los Angeles with a 501C3 status started by trans-people for trans-people, to be inclusive of the entire community; this work led to an eventual name change in 09 to Gender Justice LA. In the same year Juarez was invited to become a member of the Transgender Law Center’s, Transgender Leadership Council a group that assists with the planning of the yearly Transgender Leadership Summit and a member of the Transgender Economic Development Initiative (TEDI), a group that meets with legislators all over California in an effort to increase the funding for trans-specific employment programs all across the state. Juarez was also invited to become a member of Liberty Hills Funding Board 2010, a group that reviews the proposals and conducts site visits with some of the groups in consideration to receive a grant. Lastly Juarez was the recipients of the 2010 Trans Unity Trailblazer Award.

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Danny Kirkcoff Bio unavailable

Timothy Kordic is the Teacher Adviser for the HIV/AIDS Prevention Unit of the Los Angeles Unified School District. His work is currently with the Secondary health teachers to provide training on the District-adopted HIV/AIDS & STD Prevention Curriculum, including Federal, State, and District mandates. He also supervises the District’s Positively Speaking program and works with several collaborative partners to implement and promote several awareness campaigns throughout the school year to target specific priority populations. Mr. Kordic was a classroom teacher for several years, and later worked outside of the classroom on violence-, bullying-, and ATOD- (alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs) prevention with the public and private schools.

Dr. John Kowalczyk is a widely published urologic surgeon whose association with Lim-Keith Multispecialty Medical Clinic, Inc. began in 1996. Dr. Kowalczyk provides a full spectrum of urologic care with special expertise in the areas of impotence, incontinence and urodynamics. A graduate of Loyola University in Chicago, IL, Dr. Kowalczyk received his medical degree and completed his residency at Midwestern University. He proceeded immediately from his residency into a prestigious fellowship at Indiana University Medical Center, where he studied the latest developments in incontinence and impotence, co-authoring several journal articles with his mentor, John Mulcahy, M.D. After completing his Fellowship, Dr. Kowalczyk relocated to Southern California and began practicing as a member of the Lim-Keith Multispecialty Medical Center team. He has also served as Chairman of the American Cancer Society’s Man-to-Man Prostate Cancer Program (Central Los Angeles Unit), as Quality Assurance Director for Thompson Memorial Hospital and Director of Urinary Incontinence at Hollywood Community Hospital. Dr. Kowalczyk continues to contribute to the development of new treatments in urologic surgery. To date, he has published 12 medical journal papers. He is board certified by the American Board of Osteopathic Surgeons and in 1999 was named a Fellow of the American Board of Osteopathic Surgeons. His hospital affiliations include Hollywood Community Hospital, Midway Hospital Medical Center, Glendale Adventist Medical Center and Good Samaritan Hospital. Dr. Kowalczyk is a member of the American Medical Association, American Osteopathic Association, American College of Osteopathic Surgeons and the American Urologic Association, as well as several California and Los Angeles medical associations.
Katrina Kubicek, Ph.Dc, is a Cultural Anthropologist, and is the Progam Manager for the Community, Health Outcomes and Intervention Research Program at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. She has served as the Ethnographer for a number of National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) funded studies including the Healthy Young Men’s study, the African American Young Men’s Study and the Young Men’s Adult Identity Mentoring project. Ms. Kubicek is also the Assistant Director of the Office of Community Engagement of the Los Angeles Basin Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) where she fosters community partnership in translational research opportunities. For the last 10 years, Ms. Kubicek has been conducting community-based research in partnership with a range of community service providers and agencies working with underserved populations, including violence prevention programs for immigrant populations, gang prevention programs and HIV-prevention research with young men who have sex with men. Her research has focused primarily on exploration of the interpersonal, familial, social, cultural and economic influences on the health and well being of under-served populations. She is the recent recipient of a grant from the California HIC/AIDS research Program that is exploring intimate partner violence with young gay and bisexual men to better understand the relationship between violence and HIV. Previous research has focused more specifically on factors that may increase adolescents’ risk of engaging in a violent relationships with respect to family and peer networks. She also vast experience in working in collaboration with community partners and is committed to disseminating research findings that are relevant to a variety of audiences, with the ultimate goal of designing programs and interventions that are effective for the target populations and communities.

Dr. Joel L. Kushner serves as Director for the Institute for Judaism and Sexual Orientation at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Los Angeles. The IJSO provides a myriad of resources and services, including LGBT liturgies and life-cycle rituals, field internships, academic conferences, and consulting to community groups. He brings to this position a unique educational background and professional experience. Dr. Kushner has a 17-year history of dedication to counseling, training, and education and a passion for cultural issues and diversity. He has multiple graduate degrees in counseling and clinical psychology from Columbia University in New York and from Rutgers University in New Jersey. For the last nine years, Dr. Kushner has worked as a consultant to both profit and non- profit organizations as a behavioral healthcare consultant focusing on crisis management, performance, training, and policy development. Dr. Kushner has a lifelong interest in pastoral care developed originally from coursework at New College, University of Edinburgh, Scotland. He completed an extended unit in CPE at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City and continued in its on-call rotation for two more years as a lay chaplain. For eight years, Dr. Kushner co-led education bereavement groups for adults at St John’s Medical Center in Santa Monica, CA. In the mid 1980s, Dr. Kushner volunteered for GMHC in New York, participated in several of the first AIDS education programs conducting outreach as well as led groups focused on education and behavior change. He also volunteered with the Deaf AIDS Project focusing on curriculum design to help bring information to a population that, at that time, had no access to AIDS education. In Los Angeles, Dr. Kushner served for three years on the Board of Directors of LAGPA, the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Psychotherapy Association.

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Deborah Levan has worked in the field of health promotion and health education for 25 years, focusing on Alcohol and Other Drug abuse/misuse prevention and community-based services for older adults for the past 18 years. She is currently the Divisional Director of Older Adult Services of Behavioral Health Services, Inc. a not-for-profit community-based health and social service agency in Los Angeles County. Ms. Levan provides direction and administrative oversight for several BHS programs targeting older adults, including a drug misuse prevention program for older adults called The Medicine Education Program, and a Promotores de salud project that provides culturally appropriate health promotion training and AOD prevention to Latino older adult volunteers. Ms. Levan also manages BHS South Bay Senior Services, a program that provides care management and in-home supportive services to homebound, frail elderly and disabled adults in the South Bay area. She holds a Master’s Degree in Public Health, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychobiology, both from UCLA. As an appointed member of the Aging Constituent Committee of the California Department of Alcohol & Drug Programs, Ms. Levan is honored to be currently serving as the Committee Chairperson. She is an active member of the American Society on Aging and has presented at several state and national conferences on the prevention of alcohol and drug misuse among older adults and on the Promotores de Salud model in reaching Latino older adults

Jules Levin Executive Director National AIDS Treatment Advocacy Project (NATAP)

David Lisonbee (With his partner, Tiran) owns and operates Twin Town Treatment Centers, a network of Southern California based intensive outpatient addiction treatment programs. Through Twin Town, David and Tiran most recently opened an outpatient treatment center in the LGBT center of West Hollywood. David has been a behavioral healthcare administrator for over twenty-two years and has actively participated in gay 12-step programs for thirteen years (also having thirteen years of continuous sobriety.) Originating from Logan Utah, David came-out in college in the late seventies. After graduating with a degree in psychology, he moved, finding more accepting communities on the West Coast. Since leaving the very conservative traditions of Utah, David has lived in San Francisco, Portland, Oregon, Long Beach, San Jose, San Diego and now, West Hollywood.

Margie Lopez has been working in the field of Substance abuse treatment for over 16 years, and is also a Certified Domestic Violence Counselor. Currently, directing a program for treatment of Alcohol/Drugs and Domestic Violence, as well as providing on site mental health services. Prior experience after college was 18 years of Law Office Management

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Cristina Magalhaes, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in the PsyD Program at the California School of Professional Psychology in Alhambra. She has published many articles and done many presentations on trans issues, including Current controversies in transgender psychology: Increasing diversity awareness; TRANSforming our unions: The joy of transgender relationships; Transgender femininity: An exploratory study; and Where does the T fit in LGBT? Understanding gender variance

Illana Mandel, American Liver Foundation Bio unavailable

David Martin, Ph.D., is a Professor in the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences (Medical Psychology), Director of HIV Mental Health Services, and Chief Psychologist and Director of Training in the Psychology Division at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. He received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Washington in 1977, and his Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 1983. He completed internship and post-doctoral training at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, and he is licensed as a psychologist in California. Dr. Martin is a member of a several professional organizations, including the American Psychological Association (Divisions 8, 12, 38, 40, 44), the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, and the California Psychological Association (Divisions II, IV, VII). He also serves as an expert for the Boards of Psychology, Behavioral Sciences, and Optometry for the State of California. He served as an oral commissioner for the Board of Psychology from 1986 to 2001. In addition to his professional affiliations as a psychologist, Dr. Martin maintains affiliations with a number of governmental and community-based organizations, including the Long Beach HIV CARE Comprehensive Planning Group, the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services HIV Commission, the State of California Department of Health Services HIV Comprehensive Care Working Group, and the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health HIV Mental Health Program. In 1991-93, Dr. Martin chaired the Mayor’s HIV/AIDS Task Force for the City of Long Beach, California. During the past year, Dr. Martin served on Los Angeles County HIV Health Services Membership Task Force to make recommendations concerning restructuring the Commission and the Prevention Planning Group. Dr. Martin’s current research projects include employment issues for persons with HIV (for which he has a five-year NIMH-funded grant for to investigate a program designed to assist persons with HIV in their efforts to return to work), neuropsychological evaluation of persons with HIV disease, HIV treatment adherence, and high-risk sexual behavaior. He has published and presented in the areas of depression, HIV (risk reduction, mental health, and community need), and ethics (treatment of gay men and lesbians, HIV-infected populations, work in managed care). Dr. Martin’s responsibilities as Director of the HIV Mental Health Program at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center include coordinating care with primary-care providers, oversight of mental health and psychiatric services for people with HIV/AIDS, supervision of post-doctoral fellows and field-placement students in their clinical service provision, and evaluation and follow-up clinical work with persons with HIV. During his work in this capacity, Dr. Martin has worked with community and governmental assistance and legal agencies, and he assisted in the creation of certain Los Angeles County procedural responses to high-risk sexual behavior among persons with HIV. In his capacity as Chief Psychologist and Director of Training in the Psychology Division, Dr. Martin is responsible for oversight of the administration of a division of 19 psychologists and for organization of training activities for 8-10 post doctoral fellows in the oldest APA-accredited psychology post-doctoral fellowship program in the United States and coordination of field-placement student activities for 35 field-placement students across six different programs.

Eddie Martinez Associate Director, The Wall Las Memorias; Past Co-Chair of the National Latino AIDS Awareness Day planning committee; Present member of the Los Angeles County Meth Work Group;
Present member of the State of California Office of AIDS Latino Advisory Board; Lead coordinator and present member of the Greater East Los Angele Meth Task Force.

RiKu Matsuda is an Intergroup Relations Specialist at the LA County Commission on Human Relations. He is a former board member of FTM Alliance and co-founder of qteam, a queer and trans youth of color multi-issue organizing collective in Los Angeles. Currently, riKu serves as a core collective member of LETSGO! Liberation (LGL) and hosts the public radio show FLIPTHESCRIPT Monday nights from 8-8:30pm on KPFK 90.7FM.

Sandi McClure Bio unavailable

Bobbi McDaniel works as a Policy Advisor to the City of Los Angeles, Human Relations Commission her first year was spent working exclusively in troubled Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) middle and high schools. She has trained well over 3,500 administrators, teacher, parents, and students in the areas of conflict management. Some of the schools where she has worked include Crenshaw, Dorsey, Fremont, Locke, Jordan, Santee, Jefferson King – Drew, Markham, Washington and Le Conte. Bobbi has a BA in Speech Communications from the University of Nevada her home state and was awarded a fellowship to attend Fordham University in New York City where she received her Master’s in Education

Rachel McLean is the Adult Viral Hepatitis Prevention Coordinator with the California Department of Public Health, STD Control Branch. Previously, she worked on policies affecting incarcerated youth and their families at the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights in California and on issues affecting people released from prisons and jails at the Council of State Governments Justice Center in New York. She also founded the Drug Overdose Prevention and Education Project in San Francisco.

Elizabeth Mendia is the Executive Director of Whittier Rio-Hondo AIDS Project (WHRAP).

Margaret Meriwether is a behavioral health and wellness specialist for the Smoking Cessation Leadership Center at UCSF. The Center, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the American Legacy Foundation, works with over 80 health professional organizations, localities, community groups, and health care organizations to increase the cessation rate for smokers. Margaret graduated with a doctorate in organizational psychology and a master’s degree in counseling psychology. Her work has appeared in publications ranging from the American Association of Respiratory Care Times to the The Bottom Line.
Nathan Messer is the President of He helped found the Seattle chapter in 1999 and has trained over a dozen harm reduction groups focusing on the club drug/rave/nightclub scene, as well as acted as a lead and trainer for the Black Rock Rangers of Burning Man. DanceSafe is a harm reduction organization serving the recreational drug using communities in music subcultures, primarily those focusing around electronic music and jam bands.

Robert Miodovski, Health Educator at LA County TB Control Program
Maureen Morrissey, MA, MFT is a licensed Marriage, Family and Child Therapist with over 20 years of experience. In the late 1980s Maureen worked for the Los Angeles Shanti Foundation. She conducted telephone intakes with people affected by HIV and facilitated a support group for persons with AIDS. In 1992 Maureen became one of the founding therapists of the Los Angeles Gender Center. She worked as the Center’s Clinical Director until 1998. She returned to LAGC in 2007 because she was drawn once again to working in a place that celebrates the uniqueness of each individual. In addition to specializing in gender issues, Maureen also works in the field of Reproductive Medicine. She counsels individuals, couples and groups regarding fertility concerns and family building options such as ovum & sperm donation, surrogacy and adoption.


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Cassie Najarian is currently pursuing her Master’s in Clinical Psychology in the LGBT Specialization at Antioch University Los Angeles. She is presently training as a counselor in the mental health department of the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center and is a volunteer at LifeWorks, an LGBT youth mentoring program located at The Village at Ed Gould Place. She will also begin training as a mental health counselor in the first cohort of COLORS, an LGBTQ Youth Center located in the MacArthur Park area and formed in conjunction with Camino Nuevo Charter Academy, The Relational Center, and the LGBT Specialization at Antioch University.

Elton Naswood is of the Near to the Water People Clan, born for the Edge Water People Clan, his maternal grandfather’s clan is of the Mexican People, his paternal grandfather’s clan is of the Tangle People, this is how he is Navajo, Dine. Mr. Naswood is the Program Coordinator for the Red Circle Project, a Native American HIV Prevention program at AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA) and serves as a member of the Community Advisory Council for the National Native American AIDS Prevention Center. He is currently the Co-Chair of the American Indian Mental Health Task Force, Los Angeles County and was an elected community member to the Los Angeles American Indian Children’s Council, Los Angeles County. Elton enjoys reading Native American literature and poetry, watching collegiate sports especially football & volleyball and hanging out with close friends

Ruel Nolledo, Government Affairs Officer at First 5 LA. Previously was the Manager, State & Local Affairs, AIDS Project Los Angeles

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Michael O’Connor HALSA

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Koy Parada, PhDc, MPH has been working in cancer prevention in the Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) community, with an emphasis on Hepatitis B-related liver cancer, for nearly ten years. She is a Hepatitis B Advocate for Bristol-Myers Squibb, serving as the co-Chair of both the Los Angeles and Orange County Hepatitis B Coalitions. She also teaches service-learning course at the UCLA School of Public Health, preparing students to run street-based clinics for the homeless and health fairs/Hepatitis B screenings for indigent AAPI communities. She has received awards for her work with the underserved, including the Secretary’s Award from the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, and the Award for Excellence in Public Health Practice from the Associated Schools of Public Health.

Michele Peterson, MPH, is the Associate Director of Community Health Programs at The Center for Health Improvement, a national, independent nonprofit organization dedicated to improving population health and encouraging healthy behaviors. She provides comprehensive support to help public and private organizations across the country effect lasting change in their efforts to prevent disease and promote health.

Beth Powers, HIV Program Coordinator United American Indian Involvement

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Christina Quiñonez is a case manager and a health education specialist at the transgender services project from the Division of Adolescent Medicine with Childrens Hospital Los Angeles. She has been working in the field of HIV since she was very young, she has worked at different agencies in the Los Angeles County including the Department of Public Health Epidemiology Department and Bienestar Human Services

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Meghan Ralston is Drug Policy Alliance’s harm reduction coordinator in Southern California. She is an advocate and activist for harm reduction and healthcare services for marginalized populations in Los Angeles, California. Ralston’s activism work includes creating an organization that assembles and delivers first-aid kits directly to the homeless in her community. She currently serves as the facilitator of the Los Angeles County Harm Reduction Collaborative and co-chairs the Overdose Prevention Task Force of Los Angeles County, as well as serving as an active member of the Hepatitis C Task Force for Los Angeles County. She holds a B.A. in organizational communication from Capital University.
Cathy Reback is a Senior Research Scientist with Friends Research Institute, an Associate Research Sociologist with UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs (UCLA ISAP), and a Core Scientist with the UCLA Center for HIV Identification, Prevention and Treatment Services (UCLA CHIPTS). Dr. Reback’s research focuses on the intersection of sexual identity, gender identity, substance use and HIV risk behaviors among two marginalized and extremely vulnerable populations: gay and bisexual male substance users and male-to-female transgender women. Dr. Reback served as the Principal Investigator of the qualitative research study, “Heterosexual Men Who Have Incidental Sex with Men and/or Male-to-Female Transgenders” funded by the City of Los Angeles and served as co-investigator, with Dr. Paul Simon, on the first epidemiological study of transgender health in Los Angeles County, “The Los Angeles Transgender Health Study.” Dr. Reback has served as Principal Investigator or Co-investigator of behavioral intervention, ethnographic and epidemiological studies funded by NIDA, CDC, CSAT, CHRP, California State Office of AIDS, and Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. Dr. Reback has an extensive background in conducting community/research collaborations, evaluating behavioral and biobehavioral treatment therapies, evaluating major research intervention studies, designing and implementing street-based intervention programs for out-of-treatment substance users, and managing large-scale HIV prevention and intervention programs. Dr. Reback collaborates with many local community-based organizations to scale evidenced-based interventions into community settings. Dr. Reback’s community and policy work includes current and past membership on numerous local and national HIV/AIDS and substance abuse task forces and advisory committees.
Caitríona Reed has been a facilitator of Personal and Organizational Change for more than twenty-five years. She facilitates workshops, retreats, and trainings internationally. She integrates her lifelong work in Hypnosis, and as a Master Trainer of Neurological Repatterning and NLP, with her background in Deep Ecology, Global Process Work, and Zen. She received formal recognition as a Zen teacher from renowned Zen Master and Nobel nominee, Thich Nhat Hanh, in 1992. She currently works as a catalyst of transformational change to help individuals, organizations and entrepreneurs thrive in a continually changing social, economic, and global environment. She is cofounder of Manzanita Village Retreat, and the Five Changes Process.. She lives with her partner of thirty years, Michele Benzamin-Miki, in Southern California. She is author of The Thirty Pressing Questions, a year-long training curriculum integrating perspectives for personal change.

Rory Reed, LCSW, Ph.D. Candidate, holds a master’s degree in social work from the University of Utah and is a doctorate candidate in clinical psychology with a dual emphasis in neuropsychology and Marriage and Family Therapy. He is a licensed therapist and specializes in treating a variety of problems related to impulse control including substance abuse, sexual compulsivity, and pathological gambling. He is a part-time instructor in Marriage and Family Therapy at Alliant International University and has authored and co-authored several books, chapters, and scholarly articles. He has been a featured guest on several television and radio talk shows throughout the nation. Originally from York, England, he was raised in Canada and now resides in Los Angeles.

Brian Risley, MFA, manages the Treatment Education Program at AIDS Project Los Angeles, one of the largest ASOs in North America. Four times a year, the program hosts the highly regarded multi-day APLA Treatment Education Certificate Training for healthcare and service providers in Southern California. Brian has been Co-Chair of the Hepatitis C Task Force for five years and facilitates the longest running Newly Diagnosed HIV+ group in California. Among other awards, he is the recipient of The Body.Com’s National HIV Leadership Award for Outstanding Educator.

Daniel Rivas Deputy Director Policy and Projects at AIDS Healthcare Foundation

Alexis Rivera is the former Policy Advocate at the Transgender Law Center (TLC) in San Francisco. Prior to her work at the TLC, she was the Project Coordinator for the “Tranny Rock Star” Project at Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles. Alexis has received several awards for her contributions to the transgender community. She has been an activist and educator in the trans community for many years, and has presented throughout the country. She is now an independent consultant.

Mike Rizzo As the LA Gay & Lesbian Center’s Manager of Crystal Meth Recovery Services, Mike Rizzo brings both his 12 years of personal experience in recovery from Crystal Meth addiction as well as his 4 years experience as Program Director of the gay owned and operated treatment facility, Alternatives. Mike received his certification as a Drug & Alcohol Counselor from LACC and also holds his B.A. in Liberal Arts from Salem State College. Mike serves on several crystal meth work groups and advisory boards and has been both a featured speaker and panelist in various town hall meetings throughout the country. Mike’s own crystal meth recovery and his work within the gay recovery community have been featured in various mainstream publications, including GQ Magazine, The Advocate and an Emmy Award Winning episode of KCET’s “Life & Times” television series.
Isabella Rodriguez is the current Community Advocate for The Transgender Law Center’s Los Angeles Division. She is working to provide comprehensive services to the Transgender community through community organizing and advocacy. She started working with the Transgender Community 7 years ago as a mentor to transgender youth in Foster Care. Ms. Rodriguez is the co-chair of the Transgender Service Provider Network and she is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s Degree with a concentration in Creative Writing from Antioch University

Peggy Roman-Jacobson, Legal Director, HALSA obtained her Juris Doctor from the City University of New York School of Law at Queens College in 1999, and became a member of the California State Bar in 2000. During law school she secured fellowships with several national public interest law firms including the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, the Center for Constitutional Rights and the ACLU. Since obtaining her license to practice law, Peggy has worked as litigator for various civil rights firms including Schonbrum DeSimone Seplow Harris & Hoffman, specializing in plaintiffs-side employment discrimination and police abuse matters where she obtained several million dollars in jury verdicts and settlements for victims of discrimination. Peggy has also provided pro bono legal assistance and advocacy to clients of Clean Needles Now and Common Ground, the Westside HIV Center for the last eight years. As Legal Director, she provides direction and case oversight to the HALSA Legal Team and handles cases involving HIV/AIDS discrimination in employment and places of public accommodation, privacy and denial of treatment and medical access cases.

Nalee Romero Bio unavailable

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Dr. Sammy Saab, with the Phleger Liver Institute, is a leader in the field of liver transplantation. A respected UCLA researcher and clinician, Dr. Saab is also Associate Professor, Division of Digestive Disease, Department of Internal Medicine and Dumont-UCLA Liver Transplantation at the University of California Los Angeles Center for Health Sciences.

Bamby Salcedo is a nationally recognized transgender Latina woman, currently serving as the Health Education & HIV Prevention Services with Childrens Hospital Los Angeles. Bamby is the founder of Angels of Change, the first trans youth calendar aimed at providing trans youth with a positive image. Bamby has participated in numerous state and national conferences as a presenter and motivation speaker including Equality and Parity 2005 and 2009, United States Conference on AIDS in 2005 and 2007, Staying Alive in 2006, and HIV Prevention Leadership Summit 2006. An outspoken advocate for the LGBT community, she has been invited to speak at protests and rallies on immigration issues, marriage equality, and HIV funding cuts in the state of California. Her experience and scope of work include organizing around HIV prevention, correctional policy, and economic and professional development for transgender people across the US. Among her accomplishments include a nationwide petition to Congress and our President for trans communities to be counted in the 2010 census.

Giselle Santana is a Youth Advocate for the past year with Childrens Hospital Los Angeles Tranny Rockstar Project. Gizelle has participated as a volunteer in panels in numerous occasions to bring awareness about trans youth issues in different schools and universities including The University of Redlands and UC Irvine. Gizelle is also one of the first calendar models for the Angels of Change Calendar, in her spare time Gizelle is always researching information about trans issues and finding ways to have a better world for trans youth.

Pearl Saracho, Immigration Attorney has headed HALSA’s immigration practice since 2004. Ms. Saracho received her B.A in political science from University of California, Irvine. She went on to law school at Western State College of Law in Fullerton California. After graduating from law school Ms. Saracho took on other endeavors such as working as a case worker for Orange County’s abused and neglected children. During this time Ms. Saracho became certified in court and community mediation. She worked for Orange County Human Relations as a mediator for three years. Ms. Saracho then went on to practice law as an immigration attorney for Orange County Catholic Charities. Ms. Saracho is considered one of the top 2 public interest Immigration attorneys for people living with HIV in California.

Alan Saruwatari, CST has worked in the healing arts field since 1985. He has done extensive work in physical therapy, shiatsu therapy and qi gong and has studied under some of the best practitioners and teachers in their respected fields. As a trainer/health educator for 17 years, Alan has presented to and trained thousands of individuals at local, state and national levels.

Kimberly Scott has worked for Minority AIDS Project as a Transgender Advocate for the past 6 years. She does outreach, Case Management, and group facilitation. In addition to that, she is a Youth Prevention Case Manager, working specifically with transgender youth.

Roger Sediles is currently the Prevention Training Specialist for AIDS Project Los Angeles’ Crystal Meth Program where he has worked for the past three years. He currently facilitates HIV Prevention/Substance Risk Reduction Groups with Gay active Crystal Meth Users in both English and Spanish. In addition Mr. Sediles has participated in the planning and production of many community events to promote awareness around the issue of Crystal Meth Abuse.

Rita Singhal, MD, MPH is the Medical Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Office of Women’s Health. She is board certified in Internal Medicine and has completed fellowship training in Women’s Health and Health Services Research. She also received her Master’s in Public Health at UCLA School of Public Health. She is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Dr. Singhal serves as a medical expert on public health programs promoting breast and cervical cancer screening and heart disease prevention in women and has dedicated her career to improving the health of underserved women in Los Angeles County

Terra Slavin is the Lead Staff Attorney of the Domestic Violence Legal Advocacy Project at the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center. She is responsible for overseeing the delivery of comprehensive legal services for LGBT survivors of domestic violence. This includes client consultations, case research and court representation in civil domestic violence matters. She is also responsible for training domestic violence and legal service providers on LGBT sensitivity and same-gender domestic violence legal issues, and has provided trainings to hundreds of attorneys and advocates across the country. Attorney Slavin is on the advisory board of the ABA’s Legal Assistance and Education for LGBT Victims of Domestic Violence Project. She graduated from Northeastern University School of Law in Boston, Massachusetts in May 2005.

Suzie Sostrin Bio unavailable

Valerie Spencer is a transgender advocate and educator. A native of Southern California, she works in the arena of social services—specifically representing HIV prevention and service delivery as it relates to the transgender community. Spencer has worked with a diverse array of organizations and agencies—including health departments and universities and developed Los Angeles County’s first curriculum addressing transgenderism from the perspective of people of color. In addition, she has presented to community groups and at conferences around the country. Valerie Spencer describes herself as “being a woman from birth but discovering that just a bit later.” Her personal directive is simple—to make the complex comprehensive. “Trans-issues are very diverse, often moving into areas more commonly ignored by mainstream society: sexism, gender phobia, poverty and marginalization as a whole,” Spencer said. Valerie Spencer co-developed and co-facilitated the Transgender Leadership Academy, a collaborative effort between the Los Angeles Transgender Youth Consortium and the FTM Alliance. “This was a ground-breaking effort to build our leaders. In the past, transgender leadership came into being by way of osmosis. This was a chance to take all of the information that we as leaders have gained, share it in a constructive manner and shape our mavericks of the future,” she said Spencer has an artistic side as well. She co-starred in the 2004 V-Day production of “The Vagina Monologues,” featuring an all trans-woman cast. In addition, Spencer was featured in the documentary, “Beautiful Daughters,” which aired on Logo and Showtime television. “We are a special, gifted and courageous people who have been caught by the diversions of labeling, self-hate and misunderstanding. But there is hope and this hope will move us to the greatness of who we really are,” Spencer said. Valerie Spencer has made forward-development and comprehensive dialogue her movement. For all that she has done for the transgender community, the LGBT community and the community at large that Christopher Street West is proud to honor her with the Berman / Schaffer Award.

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Joey Terrell, Public Policy Coordinator, AIDS Healthcare Foundation

Rev. Neil Thomas is currently the Senior Pastor of the Metropolitan Community Church, Los Angeles, the founding church of Metropolitan Community Churches, an international movement of churches reaching in and beyond the gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, queer, questioning, and inter-sex community. A part of the denomination for 26 years, Reverend Thomas has served in numerous positions including Chair, Board of Ordained Ministries (European District), Member, Elder’s Task Force on Education, Member, European District Committee, Member, Board of Samaritan College in Europe, Supervising Pastor, and Ecumenical Officer. As a native of Bournemouth, England, Reverend Thomas grew up in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. In later years, he worshipped in a number of different churches including the Church of England and Baptist traditions. He attended St John’s Theological College (Church of England), La Saint Union (Roman Catholic) and King Alfred’s College, and graduated with a BA (M. Div [USA equiv]). He is currently enrolled in a Doctorate program at San Francisco Theological Seminary. Reverend Thomas served as the Senior Pastor of Metropolitan Community Church, Bournemouth following his Ordination, serving in this capacity for 12 years. He was instrumental in founding churches in Southampton, Brighton, Dorchester, and Torquay, (England). In 2002 he answered a call to ministry in Los Angeles where he currently serves as Senior Pastor. Well known for his social activism he has been instrumental in feeding programs for the homeless, night and day shelters, safer sex initiatives, establishing relations with police and LGBTQ communities, Over the Rainbow, (a drop in center offering counseling, support and information), LGBTQ youth services, as well as challenging laws that continue discrimination and intolerance. He also served as Chaplain to the Sanctuary (an HIV/AIDS hospice), five drug and alcohol rehab houses, Women’s Refuge and the Mayor of Bournemouth. He also served as Chair of Relate (Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch) – a relationship counseling organization. In 1998 he was honored by an invitation from HRH Queen Elizabeth II to attend a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in recognition of his work in the Bournemouth community. Reverend Thomas is a contributing author of “Daring to Speak Love’s Name”, and “From Queer to Eternity”. He has also been featured in a number of journals relating to queer theology and ministry to the LGBTQ community. As Senior Pastor of MCCLA, Reverend Thomas is building a strong community of faith that is firmly rooted in the call to be ministers in the world. He believes that God is calling us all to make a difference and to reach the world, one life at a time.Reverend Thomas currently serves as President of California Faith for Equality, an interfaith coalition that is building a strong voice in bringing about Marriage Equality in California, President of the Los Angeles LGBTQI Clergy Council and serves Metropolitan Community Churches on the California Council of Churches.
Elise Turen, PhD – Associate Director of the Los Angeles Gender Center and Clinical Sexologist who has 28 years experience as a therapist, educator and advocate in the field of Human Sexuality and Chemical Dependency. She has worked with individuals, couples and families coping with issues of gender identity, DSDs and their related concerns, sexual abuse, and addictive illnesses in private, institutional and educational settings. For the past 17 years at the Los Angeles Gender Center, her mission has been to create a safe environment in which her clients can explore the diversity of their gender identity along with their sexual and anatomical health and rights. She has done extensive research on the effect of internalized transphobia on transsexed individuals in transition. She is a member of The Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS), World Professional Association of Transgender Health (WPATH), and The American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT).

Rachel A. Tyree, MPH, is the project director for tobacco cessation initiatives for the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health Tobacco Control and Prevention Program. She also oversees the media and social support and services program of work under Project TRUST, a Communities Putting Prevention to Work grant through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Rachel coordinates efforts to implement tobacco cessation programs and smoke-free policies in social service agencies including HIV treatment, substance abuse, and mental health treatment centers. Previously, Rachel served as the public information officer for the LA County Department of Public Health. Rachel spent 10 years working in public affairs and media relations with Golin/Harris International, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, and the Citizens’ Health Care Working Group, an independent, nonpartisan commission created by the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003. Rachel received her master of public health degree from Emory University in Atlanta, GA. Rachel graduated from UCLA with a degree in Communication Studies with a minor in Policy Studies.

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Henry van Oudheusden is President and CEO of Behavioral Health Services Inc. He has a Master of Divinity and a Master in Social Work, in addition to Master of Liberal Arts and a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy. He is a member of the Academy of Certified Social Workers, a Certified Diplomat of the American Psychotherapy Association, a Master Addiction Counselor, and a Certified Rational Addiction Therapist. He also holds memberships with the National Association of Social Workers; the National Association of Cognitive‑Behavioral Therapists; the National Association of Addiction Counselors; and the National Association of Psychotherapy

Rose Veniegas is a social scientist whose research addresses the use of behavioral theories and interventions in community-based settings. She is currently collaborating with AIDS Project Los Angeles under a CDC-funded contract to provide HIV prevention capacity building and technical assistance to community-based organizations and state and territorial health departments. She was the PI for a State of California HIV/AIDS Research Program-funded study (UARP ID05LA024) to examine the challenges faced by and strategies for successful implementation of evidence-based interventions among staff from CBOs. She has served on the Los Angeles Mayor’s HIV/AIDS Leadership Council and co-chaired the Standards and Best Practices Subcommittee of the Los Angeles County HIV Prevention Planning Committee

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Karla Wagner is a doctoral candidate in Health Behavior Research at the University Of Southern California Keck School Of Medicine. She has worked in Needle Exchange Programs in New York and Los Angeles since 2000. Her research focuses on the alleviation of negative health outcomes associated with drug use, including the prevention of HIV, viral hepatitis, and fatal overdose. She recently conducted a study evaluating an overdose prevention program for opiate users on Skid Row, and is working on her NIDA-funded dissertation study, which investigates gender differences in the perceived costs of safer injection among IDUs who use syringe exchange.

Kathy Watt, Executive Director, Van Ness Recovery House since 1994. Kathleen Watt has been the Executive Director of the Van Ness Recovery House (VNRH), a residential substance abuse treatment program targeting Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender communities. VNRH was founded in 1973 by the Los Angeles Gay Community Service Center and members of Alcoholics Together joining forces to begin the nation’s first Gay and Lesbian-targeted alcohol recovery facility. In 1994 VNRH added a Job training Program to assist residents increase their computer skills and to become employed. In 1995 CNRH added out-patient counseling based on harm reduction to address the exploding crystal methamphetamine crisis. In 1996 VNRH added treatment-on-demand (day treatment program) for those waiting on the list to enter the residential program. In 1996 VNRH also added a sober living facility – a 12-unit apartment building providing transitional living for residents who completed the 4 to 6 month residential program. In 1996 Watt assisted Norway in establishing a social-model drug & alcohol program modeled after VNRH in the town of Odda. In 1997 VNRH participated in the first federally-funded research study on Crystal Methamphetamine and Gay Men on the west coast. Watt has been a member of the HIV Drug & Alcohol Task Force since 1999, the Los Angeles County HIV Prevention Planning Committee, and the Los Angeles Commission on HIV, and the Chairperson of the LGBT Drug & Alcohol Constituent Committee for the State of California Drug & Alcohol Program Office. Currently Watt is serving a two-year term as the National Community Co-Chair of the Urban Coalition of HIV/AIDS Prevention Services (UCHAPS).

Robert Weiss LCSW, CSAT is founder and Executive Director of The Sexual Recovery Institute – Los Angeles, an outpatient sexual addiction treatment center. An acknowledged writer of sexual addiction literature, he is co-author of “Cybersex Exposed: Simple Fantasy to Obsession” (Hazelden 2001), author of “Treating Sexual Addiction” in The Handbook of Addictive Disorders (Wiley and Sons 2004), Cruise Control: Understanding Sex Addiction in Gay Men (Alyson Books) and co-author of the fall 2006 book: Untangling the Web: Sex, Porn and Fantasy Addiction in the Internet Age (Alyson Books). Currently Mr Weiss serves on the editorial board of The Journal of Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity. A UCLA MSW graduate and trained under the direction of Dr. Patrick Carnes, Mr. Weiss is a former board member and committee chair of The National Council for Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity and has lectured for The UCLA Neuro-Psychiatric Institute, The American Association of Sex Educators and Therapists The National Association of Social Work and in Washington DC at The NIH (National Institutes of Health), among many others. He provides clinical training for numerous multi-addiction treatment centers, among which are Pine Grove, The Gentle Path Program, Sierra Tucson, The Life Healing Center and The Meadows. Media appearances in the past year include The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Today Show, Dateline NBC and CNN. Past appearances also include 20/20 and ABC World News Tonight. Mr. Weiss is the featured therapist in “Hypersexuality” a 90-minute Discovery Channel program about Sexual Addiction filmed by the BBC. This year Mr. Weiss was extensively interviewed for an upcoming Showtime special on the role of Pornography in American Life. Media appearances include Dateline NBC, 20/20, ABC World News Tonight and CNN. Currently, Mr. Weiss is the primary therapist in “Sex Mania” a 90-minute program about Sexual Addiction filmed by the BBC. This show is in rotation on Discovery Channel Health and is also shown internationally. Upcoming media include a lengthy role in National Geographic’s Naked Science (November – 2005) about ‘Sexuality and the Human Mind’ and a key professional role in a major documentary on 2005 HBO special ‘Pornography in America’. n a field with very few recognized experts, Mr. Weiss is an acknowledged professional in the assessment and treatment of persons with addictive sexual disorders and sexual offending.

Joycelyn Whiten Ph.D. is a Neuroscientist, University Professor and Scholar with a major interest in Neurobiology and Behavior. As a NIDA/NIAAA Fellow in the Career Teacher Program she has designed and taught Addiction studies, and complementary courses in several settings, medical schools, Universities, at both graduate and undergraduate levels. For the past fourteen years she has been involved at the cutting edge of training individuals who are in COD recovery (Peer Advocates)., She designed and delivered the curriculum for the UCLA COD course for Addiction Counselors and Mental Health professionals and was the co-trainer for the Addiction Specialist Training at California State University at Los Angeles for Substance Abuse Counselors. She serves in an advisory capacity in this field to several Universities. Her research has been in neurosciences and gastroenterology. She is a founding member of the Association for Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse (AMERSA).

Brenda Wiewel is licensed in California as a Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) and a Marriage, Family, Therapist (MFT). She has been the Executive Director of Los Angeles Centers for Alcohol and Drug Abuse, a private, non-profit substance abuse treatment program, since 1999. Prior to that she was the agency’s Clinical Director, providing Clinical Supervision to more than twenty-five substance abuse counselors over a twelve year period. She has written unpublished curriculums for the agency’s parenting and domestic violence classes. Her article with colleague Toni Mosley entitled “Family Foundations: A New Program For Pregnant And Parenting Women Offenders With Substance Abuse Histories”, was just published (November 2006) in the Journal of Offender Rehabilitation. She has written and presented papers on five occasions for the National Association of Social Workers (NASW). As a founding member and current Chairperson for the NASW California Women’s Council, she participated in leadership roles to organize local, statewide, and national professional education conferences. The Council focuses on education and advocacy regarding women as social workers and clients. Her special interests in social work include the needs of substance abusing women, violence against women, co-occurring disorders, and restorative justice.

Loretta Worthington is a queer activist with over a decade of experience working to reduce health disparities in lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) communities, specializing in the prevention and intervention of substance abuse including tobacco. Over the last decade, Loretta worked to improve LGBT health with the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center, and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, and served as the Chairperson for the LGBT Constituency Committee for the CA State Department of Alcohol & Drug Programs for several years. As the Executive Director for Rainbow Health Initiative, Loretta leads the effort to improve the health of LGBT communities throughout MN. Loretta was recently honored with the 2010 Troy D. Perry Living the Vision Award by All God’s Children Metropolitan Community Church.

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Tim Young Bio unavailable

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