CHIPTS is honored to have a Community Advisory Board (CAB) consisting of members working with HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment Community Based Organizations, service providers, and advocates. To learn more about the CHIPTS CAB, click here. The current CAB representatives are:
Angelina Alamilla works at Friends Research Institute, Inc. where she currently serves as a Peer Health Navigator with The Alexis Project, a HRSA-funded SPNS demonstration project that aims to identify, link, and retain transgender women of color in quality HIV medical care. Ms. Alamilla has also served as a Counselor/Outreach worker for the CDC-funded project, TranSafety Counts, which is an evidence-based intervention aimed at helping transgender women reduce their risk of getting infected with or transmitting HIV and/or Hepatitis. In addition, Ms. Alamilla is a certified HIV Test Counselor. In her personal time, Ms. Alamilla co-facilitates Transitions, a weekly peer-led support group for HIV positive transgender individuals, and she serves as a member of the Transgender Service Providers Network.
Dahlia Ferlito earned a Master’s of Public Health degree at California State University, Northridge. Ms. Ferlito has extensive experience working in the field of HIV/AIDS and substance abuse in nonprofit and research settings including Cambridge Cares About AIDS, Asian Pacific Health Care Venture, the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center and Friends Research Institute. Ms. Ferlito has coordinated comprehensive HIV and STD prevention programs that involved sexual education, street outreach, HIV test counseling, Comprehensive Risk Counseling Services, Motivational Interviewing, and HIV Health Education/Risk Reduction. She is a certified HIV Testing Counselor, Family Planning Counselor, and Reproductive Health Counselor. She is a member of the County of Los Angeles Testing, Linkage to Care Plus Treatment Workgroup, CHIPTS CAB, and works in the City of Los Angeles AIDS Coordinator’s Office.
Nikki Rachal earned a bachelor’s degree in Human Services Counseling from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas with a minor in Marriage and Family Therapy. She has over 10 years experience working with the HIV/AIDS population. Ms. Rachal has worked as a Treatment Education Specialist with APLA since May of 2012, although she interned for APLA in their Client Services department for a year prior to the completion of her undergraduate degree. Ms. Rachal facilitates Project Rise, a culturally-tailored behavioral modification intervention, by using motivational interviewing to address cultural barriers that affect adherence. Ms. Rachal also implements EBAN II, an evidence-based HIV risk reduction intervention for serodiscorant, heterosexual African American couples that have a high risk conditions while aiming to deepen the understanding of how to best help African American couples enhance their health.
Bridget Rogala earned a Master’s of Public Health from California State University, Long Beach, and has been working in the field of substance use and HIV prevention since 2001. Additionally, she is a Master Certified Health Education Specialist and Certified HIV Test Counselor. Her current positions include Project Director of iSTAR Women’s Program at the Substance Abuse Foundation of Long Beach, and part-time faculty member in the Health Science Department at CSULB. iSTAR Women’s Program provides integrated outpatient treatment services for substance use and co-occurring mental health disorders; and HIV/hepatitis risk reduction for minority women. She is also a member of the Long Beach Comprehensive HIV Planning Group.
Ricky Rosales was appointed the sixth AIDS Coordinator for the City of Los Angeles on July 1, 2012. He is currently serving as co-chair of the Los Angeles County Commission on HIV and represents Los Angeles on the steering committee of the Urban Coalition for HIV/AIDS Prevention Services. He has previously chaired both the Los Angeles County HIV Prevention Planning Committee and the California HIV Planning Group. Ricky joined the CHIPTS CAB because of his interest in expanding the visibility of locally developed research and programs in the prevention field. Interventions that take into account the unique needs of the local community are vital to stemming the spread of HIV in Los Angeles.
Milton Smith in his role as Connect 2 Protect Los Angeles (C2PLA) Project Director at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles Milton is responsible for planning, coordinating, and monitoring the activities required for the successful implementation of the C2PLA Coalition a community mobilization project that is part of national 14 city project funded through the Adolescent Trials Network. He has over 17 years experience working with community based organizations around various issues ranging from access to healthcare to funding for the arts both here and in New York City. A passionate community activist, his true passion is HIV prevention and community mobilizing specifically in the areas of structural intervention, behavioral research, and youth advocacy. In addition to serving on the CHIPTS CAB he is also serving in his first term as the vice president of the Black Los Angeles HIV/AIDS Coalition.
Stacy To received her Masters in Public Health from UCLA and has worked in the field of reproductive health and HIV/AIDS for over seven years. As the Director of Research, Evaluation, and Development at APAIT (a minority-serving AIDS Service Organization), she oversees the agency’s research unit as well as works closely with the prevention and care/treatment programs focusing on HIV/AIDS and co-morbidities, including mental health and substance abuse. She is involved with agency program development and evaluation along with quality management, aiming to cultivate strategies that overcome barriers to effectively serving minority communities.
Nnenna Weathers is a tenure-track Assistant Professor at California State University Los Angeles School of Nursing with interest in health disparities research. Her focus is HIV prevention among high risk groups, specifically Black men who have sex with men and male to female transgender persons. In her role as faculty she continues to mentor doctoral students with a similar research focus. She was the recipient of a CHIPTS award and continues to serve on the CHIPTS CAB.