Board of Directors
Parent, Los Angeles
Judy Mark has an adult son with autism, which led her to become co-founder and President of Disability Voices United. Judy leads DVU’s advocacy and programmatic efforts. Judy was instrumental in the passage of the Self-Determination Law and has been active in itsimplementation. Judy has written and edited two books on the Self-Determination Program and has spoken extensively throughout California and trained thousands of individuals and families. Judy also leads DVU’s legislative and advocacy efforts and has frequently testified before California’s legislature. Judy has appeared frequently in the media advocating for people with disabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic and on other major issues such as police violence, access to voting, and the problems with conservatorship.
Judy also serves as a faculty member at UCLA, teaching undergraduate courses on autism in the Disability Studies Program. She led the Autism Media Lab, which produced seven short documentaries on the inclusion of people with non-speaking autism. Her past professional experience includes over 30 years leading communication and development efforts for national policy organizations, most extensively focusing on immigrant and refugee rights.
Judy has a BA from UCLA in Communications Studies and a Masters in Politics and Public Policy from the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University with coursework at the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. Judy lives in Los Angeles with her husband, attorney Allen Erenbaum, and son, Joshua, and she visits her daughter, Emma, often wherever she may be across the globe.
Parent, Los Angeles
Mr. Gomez is an industry expert on multicultural marketing with an emphasis on niche markets and has held senior positions with top corporations including Televisa (Univision Holdings), Microsoft (MSNLatino), and France Telecomm (Starmedia).
He is also a passionate advocate for individuals with special needs, including his son with Down syndrome. He was appointed by Governor Brown to the Interagency Coordinating Council on Early Intervention and was involved in several boards including the Board of Directors (past Chairman) for Westside Regional Center, and past President, Board of Directors of ARCA (Association of Regional Center Agencies). In addition, he is a Co-Founder of Integrated Community Collaborative (ICC).
He also served on the Board of Directors for the Special Olympics of Southern California (SOSC) and Latino Entertainment Media Institute. He is a past member of the state workgroup on self-determination as well as the State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP) and current member of the DDS Task Force Service Access & Equity Workgroup. He resides in Los Angeles with his wife, Elizabeth, and sons, Oscar Antonio, and Diego.
Diana Pastora Carson
Diana Pastora Carson, M.Ed. has been an elementary educator for over 30 years, and co-teaches a disability studies course at San Diego State University. She is a consultant and educator on diversity as it relates to disability and is the author of several articles and books including Beyond Awareness: Bringing Disability into Diversity Work in K-12 Schools & Communities, and children’s book, Ed Roberts: Champion of Disability Rights. Her disability awareness work has earned her statewide PTA recognitions in the areas of advocacy and outreach, as well as her school’s designation of Teacher of the Year. Aside from her TEDxTalk, Diana has been featured in several articles and podcasts. She served two terms on the Board of Directors of Disability Rights California, and currently serves as a board member of Disability Voices United. Diana credits her passion for this work to her brother, Joaquin, who endured years of segregated schooling and subsequent institutionalization. She takes the most pride in knowing that after many years of fighting for his release, Joaquin now lives a life of self-determination, inclusion and quality, in the community, as her next-door neighbor.
Stephen Hinkle is a disability rights advocate and international speaker. He has spoken across 24 states and in Australia on topics such as autism, inclusion, and disability advocacy. Stephen is currently working on his PhD in disability policy at Chapman University. He has his Bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University in Computer Science and Masters degree from Northern Arizona University in Disability Policy Studies. Stephen is also a former special education student who is on the autism spectrum.
Vivian’s experiences advocating for her brother, Brian, who has autism, sparked her passion for inclusion, equity, and disability issues. After obtaining a master’s degree in Education Administration and Policy Analysis from Stanford University and a law degree from UCLA School of Law’s Public Interest Law and Policy Program, Vivian practiced special education law for several years. She also worked on special education policy at the California Charter Schools Association, where she helped charter schools build their capacity to serve students with disabilities, and focused on implementation of California’s Competitive Integrated Employment Blueprint, which calls for stronger employment outcomes for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Vivian is currently a Senior Attorney in the Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities Practice Group at Disability Rights California, where she works on a range of policy and legislative issues in collaborations with the I/DD community, including equity, accountability, and systemwide change in the regional center system.
In addition to Disability Voices United, Vivian also serves on the boards of CalAPSE, the California chapter of a national organization dedicated to the right of individuals to employment in an inclusive workforce; and Kids Included Together, a nonprofit that provides training and coaching to community organizations on how to include children with disabilities. She continues to advocate for her brother as he starts in the Self-Determination program and begins to live independently in his own home for the first time. Vivian is based in Los Angeles.
A speech pathologist, Connie Lapin has been a lecturer and family advocate for children and adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders and other developmental disabilities for over 50 years. When her son Shawn was diagnosed at age two, in 1970, there was a dearth of information and no services available. Her youngest son, Erik, is a Judge Advocate in the United States Army. He has served in both Afghanistan and Iraq. Her older son, Brad, is an exceptional & sensitive professional in Autism.
Connie has testified before government bodies, lectured at universities and conferences, and made appearances on television and radio. Connie’s accolades include “Woman of the Year” in Assemblyman Bob Blumenfield’s district, and a Lifetime Achievement and Meritorious Service for Autism from Senate Pro Tem Darryl Steinberg. Connie and her husband, Harvey, recently received a commendation from the California State Senate for their contribution to advancing the rights of people with developmental disabilities.
As former co-chair of the Government Relations Committee for the Autism Society of Los Angeles, she helped lead the successful effort in California to enact Self-Determination legislation that was signed in October 2013 by Governor Brown.
2021 Emmy award winning Leroy F. Moore Jr. is the founder of the Krip-Hop Nation. Since the 1990s, Moore has been a key member of Poor Magazine, starting with the column “Illin-N-Chillin” and then as a founding member of the magazine’s school, the Homefulness and Decolonize Academy. Moore is one of the founding members of National Black Disability Coalition and an activist around police brutality against people with disabilities. Moore has started and helped start organizations including Disability Advocates of Minorities Organization, Sins Invalid, and Krip-Hop Nation. His cultural work includes film documentary Where Is Hope, Police Brutality Against People with Disabilities, spoken-word CDs, poetry books and the children’s book Black Disabled Art History 101 published by Xochitl Justice Press.
His graphic novel Krip-Hop Graphic Novel Issue 1: Brown Disabled Young Woman Superhero Brings Disability Justice to Hip- Hop was published in 2019 and 2020 under Poor Press. Moore has traveled internationally networking with other disabled activists and artists. Fall 2021 Leroy starts his Ph.D. in Anthropology at UCLA.
Moore has traveled internationally networking with other disabled activists and artists. Moore has wrote, sang and collaborated to do music videos on Black disabled men. In July 2019 Leroy Moore under Krip-Hop Nation organized African Disabled Musicians San Francisco Bay Area Tour with disabled musicians from Uganda, Tanzania and The Democratic Republic of the Congo. In 2021 Leroy Moore published a book about Black disabled young men under SoulfulMediaWorks.
Moore has won many awards for his advocacy from the San Francisco Mayor’s Disability Council under Willie L. Brown to the Local Hero Award in 2002 from Public Television Station, KQED in San Francisco and in 2014, San Francisco Bayview Newspaper named Leroy, Champion of Disabled People in the Media on Black Media Appreciation Night.
Alison Morantz moved to California in 2004 to join the faculty of Stanford Law School, where she directs the Stanford Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Law and Policy Project (SIDDLAPP), and teaches contracts, employment law, and mental health law. Her son, who has autism and serious mental illness, lives in the community after spending years receiving treatment away from home. Despite the complexity of his condition, he enjoys considerable day-to-day autonomy, has free access to the outdoors, and sees his family frequently.
Alison and her husband were founding members of the Parent Advisory Board of the Stanford Autism Center. They continue to advocate for their son and other individuals with developmental disabilities, especially those with co-occurring mental illness.
Eden Rapp is a culinary arts major at Shepherds College, and music is her passion. Her other interests include growing in her faith, in independence, and in writing and speaking abilities so she can make a difference. She has kept an email-blog since 2019 of her experiences working at Mod Pizza — and now is blogging about her learning adventures at Shepherds. In addition to being a writer, Eden is a sympathetic listener. She wants to grow in her people skills and boundaries so she can say no to peer pressure but still be helpful.
As an advocate she wants to balance listening with being able to speak up for herself and for others. She co-founded UpVoice, has lobbied in California and in Washington, D.C., and enjoys Toastmasters. In addition, she is active in California’s Self-Determination Program, and has embraced supported decision-making.
Carolyn Tellalian is a mom to three adult children: Ryan, Marisa, and Vana. Shortly after Marisa’s birth, Carolyn became involved in organizing community resources surrounding the Down syndrome and disability community in Tulare and Fresno County. Carolyn collaborated with another mom to design, fund and launch the post-secondary education Wayfinders Program at Fresno State.
She is a licensed clinical social worker at Valley Children’s Hospital in Madera and lives in Fresno. Carolyn has become involved in legislative advocacy. She serves on the board of Disability Voices United and is Co-Chair of Central Valley Regional Center’s Local Advisory Committee.
Marisa has lived in her own home with two close friends since 2015 and has been part of the Self-Determination Program since August 2020. The 3 roommates enjoy a full and self-determined life in their home and community.