Community Advisory Board

To ensure SWEHSC executes its mission to research EH concerns of Southwestern communities, we have established a Community Advisory Board that serves as the SWEHSC Stakeholder Advisory Board. In the Southwest, the term “stakeholder” conjures recollections of colonialism and manifest destiny and is hence not culturally appropriate for the communities we serve. Thus, we have elected to use a CAB to underscore the importance of community concerns and needs in driving SWEHSC research.

The CAB strengthens and facilitates multi-directional communication between the SWEHSC IAB and our community partners. CAB members represent local, regional, and federal agencies. The CAB meets biannually to review updates from SWEHSC researchers, identify new and emerging community EH concerns, and strategize about how to ensure that findings are translated into both knowledge and action. The CEC meets more frequently with individual CAB members as needed to ensure that SWEHSC is responsive to current needs in the community. The CAB comprises members representing our Indigenous, Latinx, and rural populations with extensive experience serving these populations in the Southwest.

First Name Last Name Title Expertise
Mae-Gilene Begay Forest Lake Chapter President – Navajo Nation Community (CAB), Tribal Health (CAB)
Maria Dadgar, MBA Executive Director, Inter Tribal Council of Arizona Tribal Relationships (CAB)
Gail Emrick, MPH Executive Director, Southeast Arizona Health Education Center Border/Rural Health Disparities (CAB)
N. Levi Esquerra, MSW Senior Vice President for Native American Advancement & Tribal Engagement, University of Arizona Tribal Relationships (CAB)
Beth Francis, MS Health Care Professions Program Manager, Pima Joint Technical Education Department Health Education (CAB)
Francisco García, M.D., M.P.H. Chief Medical Officer and Deputy County Administrator, Pima County Community (CAB), Public Health (CAB)
Ben Gerhardstein, MPH Public Health Advisor, Agency For Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) Environmental Health (CAB)
Yolanda Herrera Chairwoman, Unified Community Advisory Board, Tucson International Airport Area Superfund Site Community (CAB), Public Health (CAB)
Nancy Johnson, RN, PhD Chief Operating Officer, El Rio Community Health Center Health Care (CAB)
Fátima Luna Chief Resilience Officer, Office of the Manager | City of Tucson Environmental Health (CAB)
Daniel Sestiaga, MPH Program Manager, Indigenous Resilience Center, University of Arizona Community (CAB), Tribal Health (CAB)
Natalie Shepp Senior Program Manager, Pima County Dept. of Environmental Quality Community (CAB), Environment (CAB)
Mazda Shirazi, MD, PhD Medical Director - Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center, PEHSU Regional Consultant Environmental Health Care (CAB)
Elizabeth Walton Executive Director, American Lung Association Public Health (CAB)
Ann Marie Wolf President, Sonoran Environmental Research Institute Environmental Health (CAB)