Advisory Board Members*

Joseph K. Lyou, Ph.D., Chair
Coalition for Clean Air

Dr. Lyou serves as the President and CEO of the Coalition for Clean Air, a public interest organization dedicate to restoring clean, healthful air to all of California.  From 2003 to 2010, Dr. Lyou served as the Executive Director of the California Environmental Rights Alliance working to achieve environmental justice and improve community health in California.  Dr. Lyou has assisted communities with pollution problems since 1990.  He has worked on many issues, including air and water quality, contaminated site clean-up, radioactive waste, and environmental justice.  Since 2007, Dr. Lyou has served as California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s appointee to the South Coast Air Quality Management District Governing Board, the air pollution control agency for more than 16 million people living in Orange County and the urban portions of Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Bernardino counties.  Dr. Lyou specializes in issues related to research methods, statistics, open-government laws, and environmental policy.  He is the Chair of the CERA Advisory Board.

Felipe Aguirre
Legal Coordinator
Comité Pro Uno

Mr. Aguirre serves as the Legal Coordinator at Comité Pro Uno, a grassroots group working on immigrant rights and environmental justice issues in the City of Maywood.  Mr. Aguirre is also a member of the Maywood City Council and a respected leader helping to rid his community of drinking water quality problems, deal with the Pemaco Superfund site, and battle cumulative environmental impacts from the 710 Freeway, Commerce rail yards, and industrial facilities in the adjoining City of Vernon.

Martha Dina Argüello
Executive Director

Physicians for Social Responsibility – Los Angeles Chapter

For the past 32 years, Ms. Argüello has served in the non-profit sector as an advocate, community organizer, and coalition builder.  She joined PSR-LA in 1998 to launch the environmental health program, and became Executive Director in November 2007.

Ms. Argüello is an active board member of several public interest organizations, including Californians for Pesticide Reform, the California Environmental Rights Alliance, and Californians for a Healthy and Green Economy.  She co-founded the Los Angeles County Asthma Coalition and the Coalition for Environmental Health and Justice, and was appointed to Cal/EPA’s Environmental Justice Advisory Committee and the California Air Resources Board’s Global Warming Environmental Justice Advisory Committee.

Cynthia Babich
Del Amo Action Committee    

Ms. Babich is the co-founder and director of the Del Amo Action Committee (DAAC), a grassroots environmental justice community group.  Since 1993, DAAC has engaged in issues regarding pollution, toxins, and waste dumping (especially the waste dumped into their community).  Since 2005, Ms. Babich has also served as the coordinator for the Los Angeles Environmental Justice Network and has been an integral part in the communication and collaboration of the many EJ groups in the Los Angeles area.  She believes that social responsibility is important, because if you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.

Bahram Fazeli
Research and Policy Analyst
Communities for a Better Environment

Mr. Fazeli is the Research & Policy Analyst for the Southern California office of Communities for a Better Environment (CBE), a statewide grassroots environmental health and justice organization.  For the past nine years at CBE, he has managed many research, policy, and leadership development projects.  Mr. Fazeli has served on different stakeholder and advisory groups at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the California Air Resources Board (CARB), and the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD).  He attended UCLA for his undergraduate and graduate training in Environmental Studies and Urban Planning. 

Marlene Grossman
Director of Administratioin
Move LA

Ms. Grossman is the Director of Administration for Move LA, a transportation advocacy group.  Ms. Grossman is the co-founder and former Executive Director of Pacoima Beautiful, an environmental justice and environmental health organization in the northeast San Fernando Valley community of Pacoima. Prior to Pacoima Beautiful, she worked on transportation issues in Los Angeles.  Ms. Grossman has degrees in Education, Landscape Architecture, and Urban Planning from UCLA.

Shabaka Heru
Executive Director
Society for Positive Action

Mr. Heru is the Executive Director of Society for Positive Action, a non-profit grassroots organization based in South Los Angeles.  Society for Positive Action works to improve environmental conditions in a community facing severe environmental and social challenges.  Prior to founding Society for Positive Action, Mr. Heru worked for Community Coalition for Change, a South Los Angeles environmental justice organization.

Linda Kite
Healthy Homes Collaborative

Ms. Kite is the Director of the Healthy Homes Collaborative in Los Angeles.  She is working collaboratively with government agencies and community-based organizations to ensure that primary prevention takes place in the highest risk communities in Los Angeles.  In 2005, she was appointed to the U.S. Center for Disease Control’s Advisory Committee for Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention, serving under the Secretary of Health and Human Services.  Ms. Kite has worked on lead poisoning prevention in Los Angeles and on the national level since 1992.  She holds an MBA and a Masters in International Relations and was trained as an environmental justice organizer by the Center for Third World Organizing.  In addition, she has completed the Project Monitor Training for Lead Abatement Certification as well as the Risk Assessor-Inspector Certification in the State of California.

Jesse N. Marquez
Executive Director
Coalition for a Safe Environment

Mr. Marquez is the founder and Executive Director of the Coalition for a Safe Environment.  The Coalition for a Safe Environment was established in April 2001 and is an environmental justice, public health, and public safety advocacy organization involved in international trade ports, goods movement, transportation, energy, and petroleum industry issues.  The Coalition is headquartered in Wilmington, California, a community in the City of Los Angeles where the Port of Los Angeles is located, adjacent to the Port of Long Beach, the Alameda Corridor, and home to four major oil refineries.  The Coalition has members in more than 25 cities in California and in Baja California.    

Deborah Milligan
Athens Park Concerned Citizens

Ms. Milligan is a veteran of several environmental justice struggles in her South Los Angeles community of Athens Park, where she is a member of the community group Athens Park Concerned Citizens.  She played a key role in organizing community members who succeeded in forcing the closure of the Statewide Environmental Services hazardous waste storage and transfer facility in her neighborhood. 

Denise Ng
Political Coordinator for SEIU Local 1877

Ms. Ng began her career in activism more than 15 years ago after her own experience of environmental injustice. Currently, she works as the Political Coordinator for SEIU Local 1877 representing building service employees. She worked with elected officials, State Controller John Chiang, former Assembly Member Gloria Romero, and former Assembly Member Judy Chu. She volunteers with community organizations such as the East Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, Southern California Fukienese Association, Teo Chew Association, and the Asian Food Trade Association. She served on the Board of Directors of the Los Angeles League of Conservation Voters, Latino Diabetes Association, and is a delegate to the California Democratic Party and the Los Angeles County Democratic Party.

Robina Suwol
Executive Director
California Safe Schools

Ms. Suwol is the founder and Executive Director of California Safe Schools, which she started in 1998.  She lead the effort to develop and implement the strongest Integrated Pest Management policy in the nation at the Los Angeles Unified School District.  Ms. Suwol has been honored with two Volvo Hero Awards, by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Los Angeles Children’s Council, the South Coast Air Quality Management District, and Prevention Magazine, among others.  Her efforts resulted in the passage of AB 405 (Montanez, 2005), which banned the use of experimental pesticides in California Schools.

Jane Williams
Executive Director
California Communities Against Toxics

Ms. Williams is a graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles, and has worked extensively on environmental health and justice issues since 1992.  She assists local groups and Native Nations on pollution-related issues and policy advocacy at both the state and national level.  She chairs the Sierra Club's National Air Toxics Task Force and serves on numerous Boards and Advisory Groups for environmental justice organizations.

*Affiliations provided for identification purposes only.