Elizabeth “Betty” Johnson, MPA, Executive Director
Retired after 33 years with the City of Los Angeles, Ms. Johnson’s professional career included service as Governmental Affairs Representative, Director of Affirmative Action and Diversity, Personnel Officer and Manager of Administration in various City of Los Angeles departments. Post retirement, she was the Director of Diversity for Los Angeles County Department of Health Services. She also spent over 25 years as an Adjunct Faculty member for the Federal Government’s U.S. Graduate School providing training to civilian and uniformed governmental employees. Her volunteer experience is vast and varied, and includes member of the board, Museum of African American Art, lifetime membership in the Girl Scouts of America, and the Los Angeles City Affirmative Action Association for Women. She is an active member of AARP Chapter 5117, the Project Advisory Committee and Travelairs Senior Club for the City of Inglewood.
Carolyn J. Fowler, Senior Consultant
Ms. Fowler has provided consulting, training, meeting facilitation, focus groups, speaking and organizational development services to nonprofits, corporations and public sector entities. She is a 28 year retired AT&T Executive and recently served as the Chief Operating Officer for the Smiley Group, Inc., a communications corporation established in support of human rights and related empowerment issues. Carolyn has produced over 20 large scale events around the country including a national technology summit, health fair and a 2008 presidential forum. She holds a BA in Business Administration from the University of Michigan and has completed the Wharton Global MBA International Certificate Program at Pennsylvania State University.
Antonio Rodella, Chair of Advisory Board
Born in El Paso, Texas; Degree in Electronics; Head of Research Anaconda Telecommunications ; Head of Countywide Program for Orange County Social Services; Board of Directors Placentia Little League; Chairman Senior Citizens Advisory Council, Orange County; President TACC, State of California; Trustee, Elks of Santa Ana, California
Sandra Johnson-Simon, Vice-Chair of Advisory Board
Vice-Chair, Greater Bay Area Region
Sandra J. Johnson Simon is a Bay Area native who currently resides in San Leandro, CA. She spent 25 years with the Federal Government retiring on June 1, 1998 as Deputy Personnel Director for Department of the Navy, Military Sealift Command, Pacific in Oakland, California. Once retired, she became a Community Activist. She volunteers for over 30 Non-Profit Organizations and Commissions. She is the CEO/Board President for Fannie Wall Children’s Home. In March 2014 she received the Senior Leadership Award from the University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health and the California Wellness Foundation in recognition of outstanding contributions to Healthy Aging, Community Building, and Social Justice. She serves as Vice Chairperson for the California Senior Leaders Alliance (CSLA) Greater Bay Area Region. She is a member of the CSLA Capitol Action Team. This month was elected on the CSLA Advisory Board as Vice Chairperson.
Linda Leahy, Treasurer of Advisory Board
Linda Leahy was the convener of the Mendocino Chapter of the Gray Panthers and helped them obtain their 501 (c)3 status. She also helped start the ACLU Chapter in Mendocino County and served as their chair for a number of years. As Chair of the ACLU, she attended a nationwide meeting in Washington, DC and was privileged to meet Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Linda has worked tirelessly in her community creating and running a free legal clinic and center which served elders, youth, homeless people and those with mental disabilities. She currently donates her time in the community as a paralegal and nurse working with low income, seniors, vets and the disabled. She is in Law School and also serves as a Representative Payee for the Social Security Administration.
Elaine Sierra, Secretary of Advisory Board
Born and raised in San Francisco, Elaine graduated from UC Berkeley's Boalt Hall School of Law, becoming a public sector attorney and retiring in 1999 from the IRS District Counselâ€™s office in San Francisco. She moved to Grass Valley, CA in 2000, where she resides with her husband Frank Ribeiro. In addition to enjoying their extended family, she is an active runner, and stays involved in local community groups. She has served on the local boards of the American Association of University Women, the Sierra Trailblazers Running Club, Business & Professional Women and Nevada County Citizens for Choice. She currently spearheads the legislation and advocacy programs for BPW and NCCC, representing the latter organization on the state-wide California Coalition for Reproductive Freedom. She is a member of the California Senior Leaders Class of 2010, and has been Secretary of the California Senior Leaders Alliance Advisory Board since July, 2015.
John Acosta; retire after 20 years in the U.S Navy; I wanted to make a career change, attended community college where I received, Associates Degrees in General Education and one in Social Work, it was then that noticed the rapid grow of the senior population, and their respective need, transfer to San Diego State University received my degree as a GERONTOLOGIST. Currently, reside in Chula Vista where I am, employed as educator at Southwestern College. Where I teach older adults courses in English and Spanish on a special program that in 1998. I researched the lack of education and opportunities for the elderly population in South San Diego and presented recommendations to Dr Serafin A. Zasueta then Superintendent / President at Southwestern College in Chula Vista CA. Assisted setting up the Southwestern College initial outreach Senior program where classes are provided at various locations such Seniors Canters, Retirement communities or at nutritious centers where the senior population congregate; Concentrating in keeping seniors socially active and involve I have develop and preset to the senior community and those who care for them.
Elected to the California Senior Legislature as Senior Assemblywoman for 4 years; President, Friends of Mission Viejo Library Board of Directors; Chair of Senior Citizens Activities Committee of Mission Viejo; Member of California Senior Leaders Alliance Class of 2012; Orange County's Representative to TACC (Area Agency on Aging Council of California); Past Chair of the Legislative Committee of Senior Citizens Advisory Committee of Orange County, CA; Past Chair of The Heritage Committee of Mission Viejo; Past VP-Membership of American Association of University Women Mission Viejo/Saddleback Valley Branch; Advisory Board of Saddleback College Emeritus Program for Seniors;Past Corresponding Secretary of Lake Forrest Garden Club, Board of Directors; Volunteer at the Mission Viejo Senior Center, Library and Activities Committee; Member of P.E.O. Mission Viejo/Saddleback Valley.
Chair, SoCal Los Angeles Region
Cynthia White-Parks is a retired Registered Nurse currently employed by the San Diego Community College District as an older instructor. She is an avid and tireless volunteer and has numerous hours volunteering in her community. Cynthia played a pivotal role in organizing the first AARP Chapter #4916 in the 4th District community and served as its first President and held that office for several terms. She has served as President of the Jackie Robinson YMCA Senior Nutrition Advisory Committee, as the Health Coordinator of the Advocacy Service AARP Area 9 and Vice President of the Chollas View United Methodist Women's Group and President of the Pastor Parrish Committee to name a few. She currently serves as a member of the County Of San Diego Aging And Independence Advisory Board and VP of the Supulizo Family Center of ARC, an organization that offers programs and services to assist persons with disabilities. She is the recipient of AARP’s volunteer of the year award.