Mark Fairfield, LCSW, BCD
Founder & Executive Director
In addition to founding The Relational Center, Mark has been a community organizer in community health, an organizational coach and consultant, an author and a teacher. After completing his graduate studies at Columbia University in the 90s, he took various leadership positions in the AIDS movement for over a decade, including his role as Clinical Director for Common Ground – The Westside HIV Community Center. Mark has provided training and capacity building support to Gestalt Therapy training institutes internationally. He also works with community leaders and nonprofit boards and management teams, offering strategic vision clarification and strategic planning facilitation, with a focus on catalyzing organization-wide culture shift.
Dan Fink, MA
Dan oversees our Relational Community Center, managing and developing all its programs and services and providing support to its leadership team. During the dot com movement of the nineties he worked as a computer and networking technician and by the turn of the century he was the manager of an information technology department at a large insurance company. Seeking to refocus his career on improving the well-being of others, he returned to academia and completed his Bachelors degree in Psychology with a focus on Cognitive Science at UCLA. Incorporating his technology experience with this degree, he went on do cognitive psychology research at UCLA. Striving to put these new skills to work in a community context, he continued his education and earned is Masters degree in Clinical Psychology with a specialization in Applied Community Psychology from Antioch University in Los Angeles. Dan’s desire for social responsibility led him to be an organizational consultant at The Relational Center, where he is also gaining hours of experience toward his Marriage and Family Therapist license as a counseling trainee.
Amanda Morita, MA
Amanda manages the administration, finance, facilities and human resources functions for The Relational Center. In addition, she contributes significantly to program and organization development. As an organizational consultant, a social science researcher, and a community psychologist, Amanda has a vision for healthy communities and organizations. This vision is fueled by a desire to see the people of the world take better care of one another. Amanda uses an asset-based and strength-focused approach to her work. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from CSU-San Bernardino and a Master of Arts degree in Applied Community Psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Organizational Leadership at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology.
Jami Winkel, LMFT
Clinical Director, Community Project
Jami is responsible for all of the clinical training and supervision for counselors working in our Community Project. She is passionate about supporting counselors to develop clinical skills from an embodied and socially just approach. She relies upon relational gestalt theory, mindfulness practices, neurobiology research, and community psychology to inform her approach to mental health care. Jami is a founding staff member of The Relational Center. Prior to her work here, Jami was the Director of Care Services at Common Ground – The Westside HIV Community Center in Santa Monica, California. Here she led a diverse team in delivering mental health and case management services to multiply diagnosed, actively substance using, high-risk communities infected and/or affected by HIV/AIDS. Jami is passionate about working with those most disenfranchised by dominant culture. She strives to develop spaces to support healing and promote leadership with clinicians and clients. Jami completed four years of training with the Pacific Gestalt Institute. She also recently began training at the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute. Jami also maintains a private practice in Los Angeles.
Gabrielle Zhuang, LCSW
Clinical Supervisor, Community Project
Since 2007, Gabrielle has served people from diverse communities in the Los Angeles area who have faced many complex challenges. With a Master’s of Social Welfare from UCLA, she has worked with survivors of human trafficking (Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking), older adults with chronic mental illness (Department of Mental Health), children and families (Jewish Family Service) and with Veterans (Veteran’s Administration). She has a personal mindfulness practice and is training as a community facilitator with Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society. She is also training with the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute and is interested in how historical and inter-generational trauma resides in the body. Gabrielle enjoys working with folks who are exploring the frontiers of bi-cultural identity and historical and inter-generational trauma. She is also currently serving as the Assistant Director of the National Association for Social Workers-West LA. Gabrielle is working toward a PhD in Community Liberation and Ecopsychology (CLE) at Pacifica Graduate Institute with a particular interest in spiritual justice/sacred activism. Gabrielle also has a small private practice in the Mid-City area.
Kaitlin Dull, ACSW
Community Engagement Specialist
Deborah Ullman, MA
Cape Cod Coordinator, Get Empathy
Deb is responsible for coordinating our Get Empathy initiatives on Cape Cod and neighboring cities in the Northeast Region. She is also Editor and Co-Director of GestaltPress (published and distributed by Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group). Deb practices as a clinician, coach, trainer, and bodyworker in Orleans, MA on Cape Cod where her work is grounded in evolutionary psychology and relational Gestalt theory. She has authored or edited many articles, and the collections The Gendered Field and CoCreating the Field, with Gordon Wheeler. She co-chairs the CTR Psychology Council conference series “Evolution of Gestalt” at Esalen Institute. She is a Professional Associate of GISC and co-chairs the Summer Series in Personal Growth and Exploration.
Lisa Fisher, MSW
President & Board Chair
Lisa is currently the Director of Member Programs at the Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County (CCALAC). In this role, she works to influence and advance the transformation of Los Angeles’s healthcare system. Specifically, she works to enhance and support retention and recruitment of the workforce required to meet the evolving needs of community health centers. Prior to her work with CCALAC, Lisa worked as Executive Director and Director of Programs for Common Ground, a non-profit agency providing prevention and care programs for people living with and at-risk for HIV. Lisa has a long history of working in community based programing, reaching out to underserved and disenfranchised communities with specific emphasis on youth and people struggling with homelessness and isolation. Lisa is a native of Los Angeles. She earned her MSW from San Francisco State University and her BA in History from the University of California Berkeley.
Sara deLeeuw, MPA, MBA
Sara is currently the Managing Director of Finance and Development with the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA). In this role, Sara manages the accounting team and financial operations for both CCSA, a 501(c)3 organization, and its tandem 501(c)4 organization CCSA Advocates. Prior to this role, she spent five years securing major grants from private foundations, first as Grants Specialist with the Fulfillment Fund and then as Director of Development with CCSA. Sara received her BA in Psychology and Leadership Studies from the University of Richmond, where she first discovered the critical role of the nonprofit sector in our society. She went on to receive her MPA with a focus in nonprofit management from the University of Southern California and her MBA from UCLA Anderson. Sara grew up in Wisconsin and has made Los Angeles her home since 2004.
Jill Sourial, MA
holds a Masters degree in Urban Planning with an emphasis on Environmental Policy and Regional/International Development from UCLA. She was staff for over eight years to former Los Angeles City Councilmember Ed Reyes on issues of land use, alternative transportation, renewable energy, parks and open space, and watershed restoration, including a long-term revitalization plan for the Los Angeles River. Jill is trained in group facilitation and conflict resolution and has extensive experience working with diverse communities to transform the built environment as well as social spaces to help advocate for environmental, social, and economic change. For several years she lived at the Los Angeles Ecovillage, an intentional community committed to practicing these ideals in their daily lives. Jill is currently the Urban Conservation Director for the California Chapter of The Nature Conservancy.
David Comfort, MBA
Dave works in finance and product development for Los Angeles based First Century Bank. Born and raised in Virginia, he holds a BA in Economics from the University of Virginia and an MBA from UCLA Anderson. Following a brief career in professional soccer, David moved to Aspen, Colorado where he held a position working as the Sales and Marketing manager for the Hotel Jerome. In addition to his commitment to the Center, David serves on the Environmental Committee for Crown Family Philanthropies.
Amy Sandoz, MPA
Amy is currently the Director of Special Projects and Staff Relations at the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA). In this role, she focuses on driving cross-team collaboration to achieve strategic goals and on building internal staff relations. Prior to her work with CCSA, Amy worked as a nonprofit strategy consultant to various collective impact and social enterprise projects and started Ready Set Go Kits, a mission-based business that helps schools and families prepare for emergencies. She recently is an alumna of Education Pioneers, a recipient of the George Russill Fellowship and has been featured on The Blog of Tim Ferriss. Her business, Ready Set Go Kits, was the winner of Deluxe Corporation’s 2010 Project Rev award. Originally from Oregon, Amy received her MPA from Portland State University and her BA in Political Science and Business Administration from Oregon State University. She currently resides in Los Angeles, CA and is an avid tennis player, salsa dancer and golfer.
Penny Timmons, LMFT
Penny was born and raised in Montana and received her BA in History and Political Science from The University of Southern California. She also holds Master’s degrees in Psychology and Clinical Psychology from Pepperdine University. She has been a Law Librarian for over 25 years working in both academic settings and in large, international law firms. Penny is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a member of the training faculty at The Relational Center. She has served on TRC’s board for several years and is currently Chair of the Development Committee. Penny is also actively involved in TRC’s Civic Engagement programs, which she helped develop.