Anthony E. Wright
ANTHONY E. WRIGHT has served as Executive Director for Health Access, the statewide health care consumer advocacy coalition since 2002. Health Access has led state and national efforts to win consumer protections, fight budget cuts and invest in our safety-net, encourage prevention, and advance coverage expansions and comprehensive health reform. Wright led California’s coalition effort to help pass the Affordable Care Act and state laws to implement and improve it, and campaigns to successfully pass first-in-the-nation laws to ensure timely access to care, and to stop hospital overcharging of the uninsured.
As a consumer advocate and community organizer, Wright has been widely quoted in state and national media. He has also worked for New Jersey Citizen Action, the Center for Media Education, The Nation magazine, and in Vice President Gore's office in the White House.
Born and raised in the Bronx, Wright graduated from Amherst College magna cum laude in both English and Sociology. He lives in Davis with his wife Jessica, and his son Jefferson.
Northern California Organizer
PHOEBE ABRAMOWITZ, Health Access Organizer, joined Health Access in 2019. Phoebe received a B.A. in Statistics from the University of California, Berkeley. Prior to joining the team, Phoebe spent her time in college organizing students for reproductive justice with Students United for Reproductive Justice at Berkeley and The Women’s Foundation of California. Phoebe advocated for abortion access first on the UC Berkeley campus then at UCs and CSUs statewide. Additionally, she supported creators making social justice content as a Video Statistics Intern at BuzzFeed, and leads data analysis for the research of Professor Kristen Luker, founder of the Center on Reproductive Rights and Justice at UC Berkeley Law. She has also volunteered with various reproductive justice and prison abolition groups around the Bay Area.
Phoebe was born and raised in Los Angeles, and enjoys backpacking, playing piano, and dancing with friends.
CA LGBTQ Health & Human Services Network Program Coordinator
DANNIE CESEÑA, CA LGBTQ Health and Human Services Network Program Coordinator, joined Health Access in 2018. Dannie has worked with non-profits for over 10 years in program development and advocacy. He is passionate about LGBT Healthcare and is a World Professional Association of Transgender Health (WPATH) member. Prior to joining Health Access, Dannie strengthened the Trans*itions Health and Wellness Program while creating the LGBT Health Department at the LGBT Center Orange County. He has trained major hospitals and community clinics on LGBT healthcare disparities with recommendations on fixing the system, guest lectured at area universities and medical schools, and provided pro bono legal services with a volunteer legal team.
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, and the Diversity Spirit Achievement Award by City Career Fair.
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.
Director of Operations and Development
(916) 497-0923 firstname.lastname@example.org
ERIN CHANDLER, Director of Operations and Development, joined Health Access in 2020. Her background includes non-profit service as Executive Director for Susan G. Komen Northern California, Director of Development for Goodwill Industries, and Director of Program & Education in addition of Director of Community & Corporate Relations Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Sacramento. Erin is receiving her MHA from California State East Bay and will soon pursue her doctorate in Healthcare Administration.
Policy and Legislative Advocate
Diana Douglas, Policy and Legislative Advocate, joined Health Access in 2019. Before joining the team, she worked for California State Senator Richard Pan as a policy analyst, staffing the legislator on issues including health, immunization policy, and the 2020 Census. Previously, Diana was a tobacco policy analyst with the American Lung Association.
Originally from Chicago, Diana graduated from Lake Forest College with a BA in anthropology and then earned her MA in sociology from the University of North Carolina Charlotte, where she continues stay engaged in her academic community by remotely teaching political sociology. Prior to relocating to Sacramento, Diana worked in academic research, most notably with a team of global public health scholars studying the effects of culturally-competent nutritional interventions on health. Diana has built her career out of her passion for leveraging progressive, evidence-based public policy to make a real difference in people’s lives and health.
In her spare time, she enjoys watching movies, running along the American River and spending time outdoors with her husband, daughter, and cattle dog.
CA LGBTQ Health & Human Services Network Organizer
ISAIAS GUZMAN, 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.
LARRY HANSEN, Finance Manager, joined Health Access in 2017. His varied background includes non-profit service as Director of Finance for California Coalition Against Sexual Assault, and Manager of Grants and Contracts for Public Health Institute, California Community College System service as Director of Fiscal Services for the Solano District and Chief Accountant for the Contra Costa District, and University of California service as Department Manager on the Davis campus. Larry received his MBA from UC Davis with concentrations in Accounting and Public Sector Management.
Rachel Linn Gish
Director of Communications
RACHEL LINN GISH, Director of Communications, joined Health Access in 2016. Utilizing her passion for social justice and expertise in strategic communication, she manages the media and advocacy outreach for the coalition. She returned to Sacramento after nearly four years in Washington D.C., where she earned her Masters from the George Washington University School of Media & Public Affairs and worked as part of the communications team for various national non-profit and political organizations including the AFL-CIO and the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, where she helped build multiple websites to highlight the data on the status of women in the United States. Prior to living on the east coast, she worked at the State Capitol as Press Secretary for former Assemblymember Mariko Yamada, Press Aide for then-Assemblymember Mark Leno, and Press Intern for former Speaker Fabian Nunez.
She is originally from Roseville, CA and received her undergraduate degree in communications and sociology from UC Davis. She is a licensed Zumba instructor and enjoys spending weekends visiting local restaurants and wineries with her husband and young son.
CA LGBTQ Health & Human Services Network Director
AMANDA MCALLISTER- WALLNER, CA LGBTQ Health & Human Services Network Director, joined Health Access in 2016. Amanda has been fighting for LGBTQ equality since attempting to start a GSA at her Catholic high school. Her passion for LGBTQ community organizing only grew in 2008, when she was a student organizer against Proposition 8. Amanda worked as Health Policy Fellow at the Los Angeles LGBT Center while finishing a Master of Public Policy at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs. After she graduated, Amanda worked as the organization’s Policy and Operations Manager, coordinating research, advocacy on coalition work on a variety of policy issues affecting the LGBTQ community, including immigration, women’s health, youth homelessness, and regulating the "troubled teen industry." Prior to graduate school, Amanda worked for Sierra Club California as a legislative aide and organizer. Amanda also worked on a number of campaigns ranging from county supervisor to Congress, and volunteered on marriage equality ballot initiatives in Maine and North Carolina.
Amanda has a bachelor of arts in political science from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she headed the nationally recognized Campus Democrats organization and served as chair of the California Young Democrats’ LGBTQ Caucus.
Southern California Organizer
BRYANT MIRAMONTES, Southern California Organizer, joined Health Access in 2019. He has extensive experience in grassroots advocacy movements. His public service background includes nonprofit service as a Board Member for the Haley Butcher Organization, a Volunteer for the National LGBTQ Task Force, and Project Coordinator for the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Orange County. Bryant previously worked in organizing and advocating to mitigate tobacco-related health disparities among vulnerable individuals who identify as LGBTQ in Southern California. Bryant received his BA from California State University Long Beach with concentrations in Anthropology and Culture. He is currently working on attaining his MS in Applied Psychology from the University of Southern California with emphases on Consumer and Organizational Psychology.
Policy and Legislative Advocate
YASMIN PELED, Policy and Legislative Advocate, joined Health Access in 2016. Yasmin received her BS in Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC). While studying at UCSC, Yasmin got her start in health care advocacy running a mobile health care clinic for the homeless and underserved in Santa Cruz County. Prior to joining Health Access, Yasmin worked with Families USA in Washington, D.C., with a focus on health equity issues.
Born and raised in the Bay Area, Yasmin has always had a strong commitment to social justice. In her spare time, Yasmin enjoys hiking, testing out new recipes, and spending time with friends and family.
Mandy Taylor, MSW
CA LGBTQ Health & Human Services Network Outreach & Advocacy Coordinator
MANDY TAYLOR, CA LGBTQ Health and Human Services Network Outreach and Advocacy Coordinator, joined Health Access in 2017. Prior to joining the team, Ms. Taylor provided case management services at Transitional Living and Community Services, helped develop WEAVE’s Anti-Trafficking Program for minors, supported foster youth with clinical therapy at The Children’s Receiving Home, and was the first Director of Programs at The Sacramento LGBT Community Center. With ten years of experience providing mental health and community services, Mandy looks forward to using her expertise to advocate for LGBTQ mental health policy.
Ms. Taylor uses social justice and strengths based approaches to empower community involvement. She believes supporting the mental health of the LGBTQ community includes approaching issues through a lens of intersectionality. Mandy eagerly collaborates with stakeholders in marginalized LGBTQ communities to develop culturally supportive interventions, training, and policy. She believes that queer people of color, the trans community, the economically disadvantaged, and folks living with disabilities deserve comprehensive care that addresses all aspects of their experience.
Mandy has a Master of Social Work from California State University, Sacramento, where she is currently and an adjunct instructor.
Jose Torres Casillas
Legislative Associate and Internship Coordinator
JOSE TORRES CASILLAS, Legislative Associate and Internship Coordinator, joined Health Access in 2017. Jose received his B.A. in Sociology with a minor in Chicanx Studies from the University of California, Davis. Prior to joining Health Access, Jose worked for the State Senate and the California Democratic Party. In his current position, Jose tracks legislation and represents Health Access on a variety of issues focusing on health equity.
Jose was born in Jalisco, Mexico and raised in San Bernardino, California before moving to the Sacramento area. Due to his upbringing and studies, Jose seeks to use his privilege and opportunities to work in areas that benefit people of various communities. Currently, Jose is pursuing a MPA degree from the University of the Pacific and enjoys lifting weights for fun.
YVONNE VASQUEZ, Communications Associate, joined Health Access in 2020. Yvonne received her B.S. in History, Political Studies, and Ethics from Pacific Union College. Prior to joining the team, Yvonne worked at the California State Capitol as Press Secretary for Senator Anthony Portantino and Press Intern for former pro Tempore Senator Kevin de León. As a Communications Associate at Health Access, Yvonne works on digital media and press communications to enhance state and/or federal legislative advocacy.
Born and raised in California. In her spare time, Yvonne enjoys nature, practicing yoga, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.
Capell & Assoc - Beth Capell
BETH CAPELL, principal with Capell & Assoc., provides policy analysis, legislative advocacy, and other strategic input to Health Access and to other consumer, labor and public interest organizations on health care issues.
Ms. Capell has headed Capell & Assoc. and represented Health Access since 1996. During those years, Health Access fought for and won the HMO Patient Bill of Rights as well as expansions of health coverage, including the successful implementation of the Affordable Care Act in California. She has worked on a number of ballot measures related to health care. Ms. Capell has worked in and around the State Capitol since 1977, working on legislative staff, in the executive branch, and in campaign consulting. Since 1984, she has been a legislative advocate working on health care issues.
Ms. Capell has a Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley and has also served as a Visiting Scholar, research associate and teaching assistant at that campus.