Amanda McAllister-Wallner (She/Her) joined the California LGBTQ Health and Human Services Network in 2016. Prior to working at the Network, Amanda was a Health Policy Fellow and the Policy and Operations Manager at the Los Angeles LGBT Center, where she coordinated research, advocacy on coalition work on a variety of policy issues affecting the LGBTQ community, including immigration, women’s health, LGBT youth homelessness, and regulating the “troubled teen industry.” She has a Master of Public Policy from UCLA’s Luskin School of Public Affairs and a bachelor of arts in political science from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she headed the nationally recognized Campus Democrats organization.
Behavioral Health Equity Manager
Mandy Taylor (She/Her), joined Health Access in 2017. She works in collaboration to advance LGBTQ+ behavioural health equity for Californians and leads the statewide #Out4MentalHealth Project. Mandy has had a range of experiences as an LGBTQ+ mental health consumer, county clinician, LGBTQ+ center program director, and equity educator. Mandy has a Master of Social Work from California State University, Sacramento and uses social justice values as a foundation in all of her work.
Ms. Taylor is an appointed member of both the Governor’s CA Health and Human Services Behavioral Health Task Force and the CA Department of Health Care Services Behavioral Health Stakeholder Advisory Committee. In these roles, she advocates from the framework that LGBTQ+ communities deserve comprehensive care that holistically supports ALL intersections of their identities.
Her leading values include strength-based interventions, consumer self-efficacy, community defined best practices, and our collective humanity. Mandy is passionate about dismantling oppressive power structures through identifying mechanisms for change, educating those with privilege, building capacity in and resources by marginalized communities, and holding space for liberation.
During her spare time, Mandy can often be found fostering kittens and reading feminist dystopian fiction. Her favorite person is her amazing teen. Some of the ways she identifies are single-mom, queer, and intersectional feminist.
LGBTQ Program Manager
Dannie Ceseña (He/Him), joined Health Access in 2018. Dannie has over 15 years of experience working with non-profits in program development and advocacy. He has extensive knowledge in creating TGNCI healthcare collaborations utilizing upstream interventions and addressing the root cause of lack of access to TGNCI affirming health care. His knowledge and leadership have assisted in the creation of two TGNCI community health care clinics, and a monthly TGNCI legal clinic in Orange County, CA. Dannie has become a trusted leader in LGBTQ health among partners in the California Tobacco Control Program. He is responsible for building We Breathe: Supporting Tobacco-Free LGBTQ Communities from the ground-up, and has established the program as a leader statewide, nationally, and even internationally. He has provided leadership and guidance for LGBTQ organizations who are new to working with the Department of Public Health, helping them navigate the complicated bureaucracy and ensuring LGBTQ project staff always have a place to turn with their questions and concerns. He is in high demand to present on LGBTQ health at trainings, meetings, and conferences throughout the country, and internationally.
Dannie has been awarded Community Icon of the Year by Orange County Pride, Pro Bono Community Partner of the Year by UC Irvine School of Law, the Diversity Spirit Achievement Award by City Career Fair, The Courage Award from the Orange County Hispanic Bar Association and the Beacon of Light Award from the City of Costa Mesa. He has been recognized by Congressman Lou Correa, Assembly Member Cottie Petrie-Norris and the Orange County Board of Supervisors for his work in LGBTQ Health Care and Advocacy.
He is a graduate of CSU Long Beach with Bachelor Degrees in English and Political Science, and is a graduate of National University with a Master Degree in Public Health. On his spare time, he enjoys hiking and traveling with his wife and dog.
Isaias Guzman (He/Him), CA LGBTQ Health and Human Services Network organizer, joined Health Access in 2018. Isaias received a B.A. in Political Science and Chicano Studies with an emphasis on issues of race, gender, and sexuality from the University of California, Berkeley. Prior to joining the team, Isaias was a paralegal with a non-profit organization advocating on behalf of low-income, homeless, and/or HIV+ people in obtaining public disability benefits. Isaias also has an extensive experience organizing with queer and trans youth for racial and gender justice in the education system across local, state, and national boundaries. As a youth trainer for the GSA Network, he assisted in empowering LGBTQ youth and youth of color to become agents of change in their communities through youth-adult partnerships. At the Los Angeles LGBT Center, Isaias worked with LifeWorks LA to introduce culturally competent and comprehensive sexual health curriculum addressing issues of HIV/AIDs, PrEP, PEP, and youth legal rights. Most recently, he has organized the first-ever leadership summit in the East Bay tailored to the unique needs of LGBTQ youth of color. Isaias is excited to continue and advance the health and well-being of the queer and trans* community by advocating for LGBTQ health equity.
Isaias was born and raised in Southeast Los Angeles to Mexican immigrant parents. He enjoys dancing, learning about Queer Latinx art, culture and performance, and exploring new hiking trails during his free time.
Ariela Cuellar (she/her) joined the California LGBTQ Health and Human Services Network in 2021. Ariela received her B.A. in Communications with a minor in Sociology from the University of California, Davis.
Prior to joining the Network, Ariela was the Sacramento LGBT Community Center’s Community Engagement and Marketing Strategist, where she helped amplify the Center’s services and programs through multi-media outreach and by leading tours of the Center to community members, donors and stakeholders. Ariela is very passionate about creating communications content that is rooted in social justice advocacy and that represents the identities of all folks under the LGBTQIA+ umbrella.
Ariela grew up in Vallejo, CA and is a proud second generation Salvadoran-American. She identifies as latinx, queer, femme, leo sun, taurus moon, gemini rising, and a dog mom. On her spare time she can be found hanging out with friends, her partner, at local dog parks, and practicing photography.
Six California Teams Selected to Participate in the Delta Center California Learning Lab
Six California Teams Selected to Participate in the Delta Center California Learning Lab BERKELEY, CA: Delta Center California is excited to announce the six teams that will participate in the Delta Center California Learning Lab. In the Learning Lab, these competitively selected local teams will complete a project focused...