Community Action board

Learn more about our amazing partners in the community!

Learn more about our amazing community partners at L.A. CAPRA!

RCMAR CHIME is partnered with L.A. CAPRA whose mission is supporting academic-community partnered research. Learn more about RCMAR CHIME’s and L.A. CAPRA’s community partners at L.A. CAPRA’s website.


Grace Cheng Braun, President/CEO

Wise & Healthy Aging
1527 4th Street, 2nd Floor,
Santa Monica, CA 90401

WISE & Healthy Aging, a nonprofit social services organization serving older adults and their families for more than three decades. Headquartered in Santa Monica, WISE & Healthy Aging continues that long tradition of service and outreach to seniors and their caregivers.

WISE and Healthy Aging

Maggie Cervantes, Executive Director

New Economics For Women
Prosperity Center
303 S Loma Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90017

Maggie Cervantes is the Executive Director for New Economics for Women (NEW). Her leadership has resulted in significant milestones for NEW including the opening of La Posada and the creation of other housing sites dedicated to helping low-income women and their families become economically independent.

During her tenure, she has leveraged a $96,000 grant for NEW into its existing success as a $60 million economic development corporation. In addition, Cervantes has helped design innovative economic literacy programs targeting Latinas and their families in the areas of consumer rights and homeownership. As a result, NEW has received numerous awards for its unique housing and economic programs.

NEW’s signature programs include operating over 1100 units of affordable, service- enriched family housing (19 units to 119 units) with on-site community amenities including afterschool learning centers, financial education, parent leadership and civic engagement. In addition, NEW has designed, financed and developed community centers. One of the latest endeavors is a Health and Housing approach to community economic development.

New Economics For Women

Andrea Jones

Healthy African American Families II
4305 Degnan Blvd., Ste. 105,
Los Angeles, CA 90008

HAAF began in October 1992 as a project funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to gather information and ideas about the social, cultural, health and political factors that affect pregnancy outcomes for African American women in Los Angeles. Today, they have expanded their interests to issues that include preterm delivery, mental health, diabetes, asthma, kidney disease, women’s health and a male-involvement project.

Healthy African American Families II

Felica Jones

Healthy African American Families II
4305 Degnan Blvd., Ste. 105,
Los Angeles, CA 90008

HAAF began in October 1992 as a project funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to gather information and ideas about the social, cultural, health and political factors that affect pregnancy outcomes for African American women in Los Angeles. Today, they have expanded their interests to issues that include preterm delivery, mental health, diabetes, asthma, kidney disease, women’s health and a male-involvement project.

Healthy African American Families II

Cathy Ladd, MSW, Vice President, Programs

Alzheimer’s Assoc., Calif. Southland Chapter
Los Angeles Headquarters
4221 Wilshire Blvd., Ste 400, LA, CA 90010

The Alzheimer’s Association works on a global, national and local level to enhance care and support for all those affected by Alzheimer’s and related dementias.

The Alzheimer’s Association

Barbara Linski

Independent Community Representative

Anna “Aziza” Lucas-Wright, MEd

Avalon Carver Community Center
4920 Avalon Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90011-4004

The Avalon-Carver Community Center has been a multi-service resource to low-income individuals and families in south-central Los Angeles, CA since 1940’s. Its mission is to care for the physical, mental and spiritual needs of individuals and families in south central Los Angeles whose lives have been severely disrupted by the use of alcohol and other addictive substances. It hopes to change the attitudes and negative behaviors of its clients for the purpose of returning them to productive and satisfying roles within the community and, to do this, it offers a full range of direct and supportive services that will holistically address the needs of clients, their families and the community at large.

Avalon-Carver Community Center

Adriana Mendoza, MSW

AARP California
1415 L Street, Suite 960
Sacramento, CA 95814

Since 1958 AARP has been a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization with a membership that helps people age 50 and over have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole, ways that help people 50 and over improve their lives.

AARP California

Amy Phillips, Director of Service Programs

Little Tokyo Service Center
231 E. Third St., Suite G-106
Los Angeles, CA 90013

Amy Phillips is the Director of Senior Services at the Little Tokyo Service Center, a non-profit social service and community development agency in Los Angeles’s historic Japantown. She has more than 15 years of experience providing services to low-income and elderly clients starting with her roots as a bilingual case manager in the Japanese American community. Over the years, Amy has worked to raise the visibility of needs among immigrant older adults and advocate for greater access to culturally and linguistically appropriate services to meet those needs. Amy oversees a multilingual staff that provides information and referrals, community education, care management, and counseling to older adults and their families throughout Los Angeles County. She also co-chairs the Asian & Pacific Islander Older Adults Task Force, a committee of the Asian Pacific Policy & Planning Council (A3PCON). Amy has a Master of Public Administration from California State University, Northridge and earned her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Anthropology from Swarthmore College.

Little Tokyo Service Center

Rosario Quintanilla, Acting Supervisor

Office of Regulatory Affairs
Office of Communications and Program Management
U.S. Food and Drug Administration – Los Angeles
19701 Fairchild, Irvine, CA 92612

Rosario Quintanilla has served the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for 27 years as the Senior Public Affairs Specialist (PAS) for the FDA’s Los Angeles District service area. She has spearheaded and coordinated all communication with FDA’s diverse publics and strategized, implemented, and delivered programs covering public health messages. She manages all media and key official interactions with the local FDA offices, laboratory, and import operations. As a Spanish speaking fluent bilingual, Rosario has been at the forefront of consulting, spearheading, and assisting various FDA Centers in their Hispanic outreach, and Spanish language media utilization at a national/international level. She is currently serving as a Supervisor for the entire FDA Field Public Affairs program and staff.


Franco Reyna

National Kidney Foundation
15490 Ventura Blvd. Suite 210
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

National Kidney Foundation

Rigo Saborio, MSG

St. Barnabas Senior Services (SBSS)
675 S. Carondelet St.
Los Angeles, Ca 90057

The mission of St. Barnabas Senior Services (SBSS) is to enable senior citizens to live independently and with dignity for as long as possible, not only through the provision of comprehensive social services for those in need, but also by promoting a viable community life where seniors have routine social contact with others that is the foundation of good mental and physical health, supports inter-dependency, and gives seniors access to information and resources that empower their own problem solving and allow them to choose their own destinies.

St. Barnabas Senior Services

Vivian Sauer, LCSW

Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles
3580 Wilshire Boulevard, Seventh Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90010

Vivian Sauer, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, is the Director of Program Development for Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles, the oldest, and one of the largest social service agencies in Los Angeles. She joined the JFS staff in 1984 and has served in many positions including Senior Center Director, Director of Adult and Children Services, and Chief Program Officer. She is responsible for providing strategic leadership to the agency as well as program and grant development. Her current focus is on partnerships with health care entities such as managed care plans and community health care clinics, with a view towards integration of social service delivery, behavioral health and primary care. As Chief Program Officer, Vivian’s portfolio included supervision of all agency programs, serving a wide diversity of ethnic and cultural groups. Jewish Family Service has been providing services in Los Angeles for 160 years.

Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles

Susi Rodriguez Shapiro, MSG

Community Representative

Susi Rodriguez Shapiro, MSG, is an award winning committed advocate for older adults and family caregivers with over a decade of recognized leadership and strategic vision in the private, non-profit, and government sectors. She offers experience in providing Program Development, Administration, and Delivery of programs and services for older adults, caregivers, and professionals in the field of aging. Her corporate background in business marketing has served aging organizations very well. As a much sought after bilingual (English/Spanish) public speaker at seminars, conferences, philanthropic events, radio and television, she has reached multicultural populations with cultural competencies that foster teamwork.

Ms. Rodriguez Shapiro is a Gerontologist with a Master of Science in Gerontology from USC and is a Cum Laude graduate of UCLA, where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology. Her passion for advocacy has led her to work with AARP, Alzheimer’s Association, Area Agencies on Aging for both the City and County of L.A., several of the major Healthcare Plans, and numerous other senior-focused organizations. Ms. Rodriguez Shapiro lives in Los Angeles where she and her husband raised their three children.

June Simmons

Partners in Care Foundation
732 Mott Street, Suite 150
San Fernando, California 91340

As founding President and CEO of Partners in Care Foundation, Ms. Simmons strongly believes that health care and social delivery of services need to change, especially in community and home settings. She takes an active role in developing initiatives and pro-active programs which meet the mutual needs of patient populations, providers, and health care delivery networks to encourage cost-effective, patient-friendly integration of care from hospital to home and community. Under her leadership, Partners has grown ten-fold since its establishment in 1998 and has been awarded many major grants to investigate and evaluate new models of health care and social service delivery, including those in managed care environments.

Partners in Care Foundation

Carol Lee Thorpe, MBA

Executive Director, California
Independent Living Systems
550 North Brand Boulevard, Suite 1800
Glendale, CA 91203

Independent Living Systems (ILS) is a health-services company that develops, delivers and manages community-based services and nutritional support for millions of America’s Medicaid, Medicare, and dual eligible, and special needs populations. Through its holistic approach, ILS helps individuals balance social and medical services, with an emphasis on delivering compassionate, supportive care as they recover and stabilize through a critical episode, chronic illness or the natural aging process.

Ms. Thorpe received her Master’s in Business Administration from Pepperdine University in 1991. Throughout her career, she has held leadership positions with human service organizations and led the development of innovative healthcare and education programs.

Ms. Thorpe has devoted her career to providing creative leadership to health, social service, and community service initiatives on behalf of vulnerable populations in California.

Independent Living Systems

Laura Trejo, MS

Los Angeles Department of Aging
221 N. Figueroa St., Suite 650
Los Angeles, CA 90012

The mission of the Los Angeles Deptartment of Aging is to improve the quality of life, independence, health and dignity of the City’s older population by managing community-based senior programs that are comprehensive, coordinated and accessible, and to advocate for the needs of older citizens.

The City of Los Angeles Department of Aging

Fannie Upshaw

His Sheltering Arms Inc.
11101 S. Main Street
Los Angeles, CA 90061

His Sheltering Arms, Inc. provides residential, long-term, substance-abuse treatment services to persons with co-occurring mental and substance abuse disorders, persons with HIV/AIDS and criminal justice clients.

His Sheltering Arms

Phyllis Willis, MSW

Director, Senior Programs, Watts Labor Community Action Committee
11101 S. Main Street
Los Angeles, CA 90061

Since 1965, the Watts Labor Community Action Committee (WLCAC) has operated as the key antipoverty agency in South Central Los Angeles. The WLCAC continues to serve the residents of Watts, although that population is changing. As a result, the WLCAC has incorporated programs celebrating Latino culture and emphasized multiracialism to the people of its community.

Watts Labor Community Action Committee (WLCAC)