Jason Vorderstrasse

Jason Vorderstrasse joined the U.S. Foreign Service in 2004 and currently serves as the Diplomat in Residence for Southern California, Hawaii, and Nevada.  Prior to this assignment, he served as the Reports and Blockchain Coordinator and the Deputy Director of the Office of International Labor Affairs in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.  Previously, he worked as the Chief of the Political and Economic Affairs Section at the U.S. Consulate General in Tijuana, Mexico.

Other assignments include Chile Desk Officer in Washington, Global Affairs Officer for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs in Washington, Consul in Hong Kong, and Vice Consul in Kingston, Jamaica. Prior to joining the Department of State, he worked for the U.S. Department of Labor in Los Angeles.

Jason holds a law degree from Golden Gate University and a B.A. in International Relations from Pomona College. He grew up in Oregon and speaks Spanish, intermediate Mandarin, and intermediate Cantonese.

Everardo Alvizo

Everardo Alvizo is a Project Coordinator and Registered Associate Clinical Social Worker with Special Service for Groups (SSG) / Health Integration for At-Risk Racial Ethnic Communities (HIARC).

Alvizo manages the day-to-day operations of this federally funded grant program that integrates mental health, substance abuse prevention, Hep A/B screening/vaccinations, and HIV testing and primary care services, all co-located in downtown Los Angeles. Prior to this role, Alvizo was a member of SSG’s Development Team working on securing grants for a diverse set of services, including mental health, homeless, and HIV/AIDS.

As a Program Analyst with SSG, Alvizo also helped to develop community agency collaborative efforts and worked with SSG’s Executive Director on mental health policy advocacy impacting Los Angeles County.

Alvizo received his B.A. in Sociology with a minor in Latin American Studies in 2003 and his Master in Social Welfare in 2008, both from UCLA.

Luisa Lowe

Luisa Lowe, LCSW, is a graduate of the UCLA MSW program, 2007, and teaches a variety of micro classes focusing on developing clinical skills in MSW students. Off campus, Lowe works with youth, adults and families in a variety of mental health settings.

Lowe provided school-based mental health services with the Occupational Therapy Training Program, supporting programs at several schools in South Los Angeles.

She currently has a private psychotherapy practice in San Pedro in which she specializes in treating a wide range of mental health concerns in adults and adolescents, including peripartum mental health, depression, anxiety, trauma and adolescent transitions.

Barrie Levy

Barrie Levy, L.C.S.W., is a Clinical Social Worker and a clinical and organizational consultant.

She has been on the faculty of the Department of Social Welfare in the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs since 1981. She previously served on the faculty of the Women’s Studies Department from 1993 to 2011. She teaches courses about mental health policy, and sexual and domestic violence (policy, prevention and intervention).

Levy is author of Dating Violence: Young Women in Danger, an anthology on teen relationship violence (Seal Press, 1998) and In Love and in Danger: A Guide for Teens on Violence in Intimate Relationships (Seal Press, 2007). She has written a primer for college students, Women and Violence (Avalon Publishing, 2008). She is co-author with Patti Giggans of What Parents Need to Know About Dating Violence (Seal Press, 1995), Fifty Ways to a Safer World (Seal Press, 1997) and When Dating is Dangerous: A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Relationship Abuse (Hazelden, 2013). She is a nationally recognized speaker and trainer on domestic violence, and has made many television and radio appearances.

Levy currently works with PeaceProsLA, a team that engages men who are community leaders in dialogues about cultural social norms, using a bystander model promoting action for social change and collaborating to promote healthy non-violent models for masculinity.

She conducts weekly groups for staff at the Center for Pacific Asian Families, a comprehensive multicultural/multilingual domestic violence/sexual assault program in Los Angeles.

From 1995 to 2003, she was Director of the Westside Domestic Violence Network (WDVN), an interagency consortium addressing effective service delivery to families affected by domestic violence in West Los Angeles. She has provided professional training courses on domestic violence for continuing education programs throughout California, and conducted seminars in the U.S., Japan and Italy.

Since 1977, Levy has specialized in psychotherapy with adults and adolescents recovering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and violence, including sexual assault and intimate partner violence, and therapy related to gay and lesbian issues, as well as anxiety and mood disorders.

Levy was founder and Director of the Statewide California Coalition for Battered Women. She is a co-founder of the Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women, now Peace Over Violence. She is former Director of Consultation, Education and Prevention, Didi Hirsch Community Mental Health Center in Culver City, Calif.

 

 

Khush Cooper

Khush Cooper, MSW, PhD. is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs as well as a consultant to public child welfare systems and private child welfare organizations in the areas of foster care reform, LGBTQ youth in systems, implementation science, and leadership. Dr. Cooper teaches Child Welfare Research, Leadership, Public Policy for Children and Youth, and Macro Practice at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs at UCLA and is a foster care subject matter advisor to the UCLA Williams Institute, a nationally renowned LGBT research and policy analysis center. She received her MSW (2000) and PhD (2010) in Social Work from Luskin.

 

Her research projects include the California Residentially-Based Services (RBS) Demonstration Project which tested new models for the provision of residential treatment to foster children across four jurisdictions, which models influenced AB 403 Continuum of Care Reform – the largest overhaul of California’s child welfare system in 30 years; the RISE Project, a $13 million, federally-funded 5-year demonstration project which developed evidence-based practices and a rigorously evaluated training curriculum aimed at reducing barriers to permanency for LGBTQ youth in foster care; the Los Angeles Foster Youth Study, the first empirical study to determine the disproportionality of LGBTQ youth in a large urban child welfare system; and the LA LGBTQ Youth Preparedness Scan which used a preparedness framework (as opposed to a cultural competence framework) to analyze the eleven youth-relevant Los Angeles County departments’ capacity to properly serve LGBTQ children, youth and families.

 

Additionally, as a social entrepreneur and specialist in the study and implementation science, Dr. Cooper has cultivated long-standing relationships with policymakers, leading practitioners, and consumers to shield and guide California’s child welfare organizations, both public and private, through reform initiatives. Her credibility in the child welfare field is further enhanced by her years of direct practice experience in foster care, residential treatment and community adolescent service settings. She has deployed performance management systems for large multi-site child welfare and mental health provision organizations; designed practical implementation support and readiness initiatives with regard to state and federal legislative mandates (such as the Title IV-E Waiver Demonstration Project and the Families First Prevention Services Act; and currently is an adjunct member of the Implementation Collaborative within Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago as well as CQI subject matter expert utilized widely by Casey Family Programs.

 

Consuelo Bingham Mira

Consuelo Bingham Mira, Ph.D. is currently lecturing at the UCLA Department of Social Welfare and is the Coordinator of Evaluation and Research for the Public Child Welfare (PCW) California Social Welfare Education Council (CalSWEC) program.

Dr. Bingham Mira received her Master (MSW) and doctoral (Ph.D.) degrees from the University of California Los Angeles, training in the departments of social welfare and psychology. She completed her California Certification in Alcohol & Drug Abuse Studies and Counseling at UCLA.

She has had extensive clinical research experience and has worked on grants from the National Institute of Mental Health, National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and the National Institute on Aging at Harbor-UCLA, UCLA and Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science. Bingham Mira has worked with the Los Angeles Department of Mental Health, Los Angeles County Health Services, Los Angeles Community Mental Health Centers and St. John’s Health Center.

Her work among the varied cultural and ethnic groups in Los Angeles, Europe and South Africa emphasizes a multi-cultural mental health perspective that incorporates an ecological approach that consists of the biological, psychological, sociological, and cultural forces that affect the interplay between the person and their environment. Bingham Mira also had a professional career in dance, music and theatre and her years of training and passion for the performing arts infuses her approach to education.

 

Rebecca Danelski

Rebecca Danelski, LCSW, teaches first-year direct practice courses in the MSW program.

She has a psychotherapy practice in Culver City where she specializes in women’s issues and treats a wide range of adult mental health problems, including depression, anxiety, trauma, family conflict  and relationship issues.

Danelski was a staff social worker and the coordinator of student training at the Venice Family Clinic from 1995 to 2005.

 

Michael Fleming

Michael Fleming is the Executive Director of the David Bohnett Foundation, a grant-making foundation charged with “improving society through social activism.”

In August 2013, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti named Fleming to the influential Board of Water and Power Commissioners, overseeing the nation’s largest public utility.

He is the Chairman of the Board of public radio powerhouse KCRW, a Trustee of the NPR Foundation and, since 2003, a lecturer on non-profits, organizational development and public policy at UCLA and NYU.

 

 

Monica Blauner

Monica Blauner, LCSW, is a graduate of Smith College School for Social Work, 1979, and earned a certificate in psychoanalysis from the New York Freudian Society Psychoanalytic Training Institute. She is also a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist.

She is currently in private practice in Los Angeles, and has worked at all levels of care in mental health and substance abuse treatment.

Blauner currently leads an Integrative Seminar for Smith College School for Social Work students placed in Los Angeles.

Previously, she taught at the Psychoanalytic Training Institute of the New York Counseling Center and Metropolitan Institute for Training in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy. She is dedicated to teaching foundational clinical skills, including client engagement, understanding unconscious process and using the therapeutic relationship.