Laura Liévano-Karim is a Fulbright fellow and PhD student in the UCLA Department of Social Welfare. She earned a B.Sc. in Psychology at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada and an MPP degree from Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia. Before joining the PhD program at the Luskin School of Public Affairs, she worked as a researcher on diverse projects, both quantitative and qualitative, addressing multiple social justice dilemmas in Colombia including violence targeting marginalized populations of young people experiencing basic needs instability and youth disenfranchised from the system, throughout rural and urban zones of Colombia. Laura also worked as a lecturer at Universidad de los Andes teaching the undergraduate course: Qualitative Methods for Public Affairs. Recently Laura was working for an NGO specifically addressing the assessment of gender-based violence for teen mothers in the Caribbean region of Colombia and a study on state violence against youth at a juvenile detention center in Bogotá. Laura currently works with professor Dr. Amy Ritterbusch developing a research program on the prevention of violence against children in Colombia and Uganda.
Lynn Zimmerman has over 30 years of LCSW experience working in Los Angeles.
Her interests include mental health issues with a focus on early childhood mental health (Birth to Five), children and families, trauma, and women’s issues. She has a special interest in attachment and neurodevelopmental issues, assessment, treatment and reflective supervision.
Lynn has worked as a Clinical Mental Health Supervisor with Los Angeles Department of Mental Health (LA DMH) and Community Mental Health clinics including: Providence Saint John’s Child and Family Development Center (CFDC) and Didi Hirsch Community Mental Health Clinic. She worked as a Clinical Supervisor and Program Coordinator with the Child Abuse Prevention, Intervention and Treatment Program (CAPIT) and Partnerships for Families (PFF) with Providence Saint John’s / CFDC and Child Alert Program with Didi Hirsch Community Mental Health Center.
Lynn has additionally holds a Master Public Administration from University of San Francisco.
Lynn specialized in psychotherapy and clinical supervision with adults, young adults, adolescents, birth to five and also with parents focusing on postpartum and perinatal issues, attachment, trauma, anxiety and depression.
Currently Lynn has a private practice and offers clinical supervision and consultation to agencies, and licensed and unlicensed clinicians. She is endorsed by the California Center for Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health as an Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist (IECMHS) and as a Reflective Practice Facilitator II (RPF-II
Jihyun Oh earned her BA in Social Welfare at the Catholic University of Korea, her MA in Social Welfare at Seoul National University, and her MSW at the University of Washington (UW), Seattle. Prior to entering the UCLA doctoral program, in 2006-2011, she worked for various projects regarding measuring national minimum cost of living and producing Korean Welfare Panel Study data in the Division of Basic Social Security Research at the Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs (a government-funded think tank). After completing her MSW, in 2017-2018, she interned in Partners for Our Children (UW-affiliated child welfare research center) in Seattle. Drawing on her research and practicum experiences in both Seoul and Seattle, Jihyun’s main research interest is child welfare and its association with relevant factors from both institutional and intergenerational contexts including parenting quality. Through her doctoral study at UCLA, Jihyun hopes to develop more comprehensive and systematic analysis that can contribute to improvements in child support policy and practice.
Sara Wilf is a first-year student in Social Welfare, with an MPA in Social Policy from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs. She also holds a BA in Comparative Literature – Spanish and English from Brown University, where she graduated magna cum laude.
Sara researches youth civic engagement and youth-led social change, with a focus on social media. She is interested both in the developmental process of civic engagement in youth, as well as the impact of civic engagement and youth leadership on individuals, schools, and communities. Her research interests stem from her involvement with youth empowerment programs in the U.S., and her experience evaluating youth-focused programs with organizations such as Ashoka, Mathematica Policy Research, and Make a Difference (India).
You can find Sara on Twitter at @SaraBWilf
Stephanie Thorne is a first year Social Welfare PhD student at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs. Stephanie earned her Master of Science in Social Work with a concentration in Administration and Policy Practice from the University of Texas at Austin and her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a minor in Sexuality Studies from the University of California at Davis. She has worked with children and families in diverse environments for several years, including providing equine therapy, volunteering at a crisis nursery, providing tutoring services, completing family assessments, and in social work case management. Additionally, Stephanie has experience in developmental psychology research and child welfare research. Before starting at UCLA, Stephanie was a Research Associate at a state-wide Texas child placing agency. Stephanie’s research interests include foster care systems in Los Angeles County. Stephanie is a member of the National Association of Social Workers and the Eta Tau chapter of Phi Alpha, the Social Work Honor Society.
Sid Jordan’s interdisciplinary research examines social inequity in health care and the law, particularly for survivors of gender-based violence, and integrates community and macro practice. Sid’s dissertation builds on a participatory action research project led by and for transgender community organizers in Los Angeles to better understand and address gender, racial, and economic inequities in health and access to health services. His study investigates how participants work to define, practice, and reimagine “transgender health care” in a period of increased social recognition, political uncertainty, and pervasive inequality.
Sid has published on the inclusion of transgender people in federal antiviolence policy and on juvenile justice policies and practices, with a focus on LGBTQ youth and institutional violence. His research and writing have appeared in the peer-reviewed journals Violence Against Women, the Journal of Youth and Adolescence, and Youth Justice, and in research reports published by the Williams Institute and the Southern California HIV/AIDS Policy Research Center. He has presented his work at the annual meetings of the Society for Social Work and Research, the American Public Health Association, and the National Transgender Health Summit, as well as a range of professional and public venues, including Los Angeles City Hall and the national Biomedical HIV Prevention Summit.
Sid’s research and teaching draws from his training in law and the social sciences, his practice experience in community development and antiviolence organizations, and his participation in social justice movements. He has advanced training in qualitative methods, legal analysis, and participatory research. He has worked with several research teams and non-profit organizations committed to community-based research and the translation of research into practice.
Sid previously led a national demonstration project to increase access to services for LGBTQ survivors of domestic and sexual violence. He started his social work career as a peer outreach worker for homeless youth and, for nearly two decades, has provided training and consultation to youth-serving and social service agencies. Sid earned a Juris Doctor from the University of Victoria and an undergraduate degree in Sociology and Political Science from the University of Washington.
Shannon’s research is interdisciplinary and centers on adolescent and family development, mental health, stress and support. Her mixed-methods dissertation uses a life history calendar qualitative approach to interview transgender adolescent-parent dyads to explore their stress and support experiences across the adolescent life-span. Additionally, her dissertation includes a quantitative survey to further describe adolescent and parent perceptions of current adolescent psychological distress and school experiences. This research is important because it explores the role of parent- adolescent stress and support for adolescent gender identity development and affirmation.
Shannon earned her MSW from the University of Southern California and spent the 8 years prior to her doctoral training as a clinical social worker with children, families and adolescents. Specifically, she has worked as a clinical social worker within the field of child-adolescent mental health, LGBT adolescent mental health and youth HIV. During her PhD training, Shannon coordinated multiple research projects which included developing research protocols, collecting both quantitative and qualitative data and grant writing. Shannon has developed expertise in qualitative methodology and analysis, family mental health and qualitative dyadic analysis. Shannon used her clinical social work and research experiences within her teaching. During her doctoral education, she taught both MSW and Public Affairs undergraduate courses including human behavior, child and adolescent psychopathology and research methods.
Shannon received funding for her work from the American Psychological Foundation Roy Scrivner Memorial Research Grant and a National Research Service Award (NRSA) F31 predoctoral fellowship from NICHD. Shannon’s funding enabled her to expand her work to explore transgender adolescent-parent stress and support outside the contexts of her dissertation. During her doctoral studies and through her F31, she has collaborated with and been mentored by scholars across multiple institutions including UCLA, USC, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, Pitt and University of Hawaii. Through these collaborations, she published a manuscript as a lead author in the Journal of Sexuality Education and has collaborated on multiple manuscripts published in AIDS Care, Substance Use and Misuse, Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions, and LGBT Health. Shannon plans to apply knowledge gained to: (1) develop larger grants and context specific interventions to support transgender children, adolescents and their families across multiple social domains; and (2) build upon the broader field of child, adolescent and family research and health.
Ulises Ramirez is a bilingual and bicultural licensed clinical social worker. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Masters in Social Welfare from UCLA. Mr. Ramirez has received Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) certifications from the Academy of Cognitive Therapy and the National Institute of Mental Health and began teaching the CBT course at UCLA’s Luskin Department of Social Welfare in 2010. He is intensively trained in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) and is one of the founding clinicians of the Spanish-speaking DBT Program at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. His interest in third-wave behavior therapies has also led him to receive intensive training in Cognitive Behavioral Analysis System of Psychotherapy (CBASP) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). Additionally, Mr. Ramirez is certified as a practitioner and supervisor in Prolonged Exposure (PE) Therapy, a treatment for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Mr. Ramirez is a Mental Health Clinical Supervisor and coordinates the social work training at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center’s Department of Psychiatry. He has been a field instructor to MSW students since 2000 and has also provided CBT and DBT supervision to psychiatry residents and psychology externs. He was involved in the dissemination of CBT and PE treatments for the Los Angeles County’s department of mental health by supervising clinicians from directly and county contracted clinics.
Mr. Ramirez has been committed to providing culturally competent evidence-based practice treatment and has performed training workshops and presentations on CBT, PE and DBT with the Latino population at several conferences. Mr. Ramirez is a co-author of the Cultural Competency and Dialectical Behavior Therapy chapter in the book Cultural Issues in Acceptance and Mindfulness Based Approaches.
Sarah Godoy’s scholarship focuses on youth impacted by commercial sexual exploitation in the juvenile justice and child welfare systems and their intersection with healthcare services and specialty court programming in Los Angeles County. At UCLA’s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior, she is the Co-Investigator of a pilot study focused on reproductive health and the Project Manager of a mixed-methods research study.
Godoy conducted preliminary research in the red-light district of Tijuana, Mexico and practiced social work with women and children in the brothels of Old Delhi, India’s red-light district. She has published five articles in Forbes, underscoring the intersection of sex trafficking and technology. In 2017, Sarah was named number 20 of the top 100 Human Trafficking and Slavery Influence Leaders.
Helmut K. Anheier is Adjunct Professor of Social Welfare, and Professor of Sociology at the Hertie School in Berlin, Germany. He served as President of the Hertie School from 2009 to 2018, held a Chair of Sociology at the Max-Weber-Institute of Heidelberg University and served as founding Academic Director of the Centre for Social Investment and Innovation. He is the Academic Co-Director of the Dahrendorf Forum, a joint initiative by the Hertie School and the London School of Economics and Political Science. His research centres on social innovation, nonprofits, civil society and philanthropy; governance; cultural policy; organisational studies; and indicator systems. Anheier was the principal academic lead of the Governance Report (Oxford University Press), and is editor-in-chief of Global Perspectives (University of California Press). Anheier is author of over 500 publications, many in leading journals and with top university presses. He has received various national and international awards. He received his PhD from Yale University in 1986, was a senior researcher at the Johns Hopkins University’s Institute for Policy Studies, Professor of Public Policy and Social Welfare at UCLA , Centennial Professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and Professor of Sociology at Rutgers University. Before embarking on an academic career, he served as Social Affairs Officer at the United Nations.