Steering Committee


Tricia Gallagher-Geurtsen - Tricia is happy to be facilitating this powerful group of women in their political action work. Tricia applies her professional knowledge of schooling, sociology, and adult education to her work for Lifting Generations (formerly Women Will) She is a mother of three and partner to a dedicated behind-the-scenes Lifting Generations supporter.



Laura Beiser

Legal Affairs Committee

Sarita Ordonez, Co-Chair - Sarita Ordóñez first got involved in politics as a Congressional Hispanic Scholar Intern following her high school graduation.  She spent the summer working in Washington, D.C. for her local congressman, Rep. Mike Andrews (D-Hou.).  Sarita attended USC, but spent her summers in D.C, working on a national march for affordable housing and the successful campaign of D.C.  Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton.  Sarita was selected as one of 55 Truman Scholars nationwide her junior year at USC, a prestigious scholarship for those dedicated to careers in public service, and worked at the Department of Labor during the Truman Summer Institute.  After graduation, she worked at the House of Representatives Judiciary Subcommittee on Civil and Constitutional Rights as a Congressional Hispanic Caucus Fellow.  Sarita attended NYU School of Law, where she was a Hays Fellow, working at the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights.  She was also a Center for International Studies Fellow, where she had a unique experience writing and presenting a paper on the "Effect of the Jurisprudence of the International Court of Justice on National Courts," which she presented to a conference of high court justices from all over the world, including Justices O'Connor, Ginsburg and Breyer, and was also published in the book International Law Decisions in National Courts and the NYU Journal of International Law and Politics.  After law school, Sarita worked for the Connecticut Civil Liberties Union and clerked for the Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court in New Haven, CT.  She then joined the public interest/criminal defense firm of Sheehan & Reeve, where she represented clients in state and federal court charged with everything from drug possession to murder, and successfully argued the landmark case of State v. Rolon before the state supreme court. Sarita also taught an international human rights seminar at Fairfield University.  She then moved to San Diego in 2001, where she had three kids and undertook indigent criminal appeals for Appellate Defenders.  In 2005, she formed Justice First with a friend from law school, a public interest firm dedicated to protecting fundamental human rights and liberties. 


Deanna Niño, Co-Chair - Deanna Niño serves as Co-Chair of our Legal Affairs Committee and draws from her experience as a former Partner at the New York Office of the international law firm of Greenberg Traurig, LLP. Ms. Niño focused her practice in the areas of ERISA, employee benefits law and executive compensation. Prior to her private practice, Ms. Niño served as a Pension Investigator with the U.S. Department of Labor, Pension & Welfare Benefits Administration in Boston, Massachusetts. Ms. Niño is a graduate of the University of Vermont and the University of Denver College of Law and studied at the Universidad de Barcelona and the Universidad de Madrid. Ms. Niño was a Faculty Member of The International Foundation of Employee Benefits Plans' Certificate Series and was a frequent lecturer and author in the areas of ERISA and employee benefits law. Ms. Niño was an Editor and Contributing Author of the following employee benefit treatises: "Employee Benefits Handbook," “Health Care Benefits Law," and "Employee Benefits Law: ERISA and Beyond.” Ms. Niño is admitted to practice in New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut and the District of Columbia.


Youth Advocacy Committee

Maya Landsberg, Chair

Olivia Hatch, Member

Immigrant & Minority Rights Committee

Elif Tinney, Chair

Andrea Esajian, Member


Dawn Hagan, Co-Chair

Stephanie Mauro Baran, Co-Chair

Kim Goodwin, Co-Chair - Kim is a busy physician and co-owner of her practice, West Coast OB/GYN. After growing up in both Florida and then Colorado, she went to the University of San Francisco (where she was also a Division I volleyball athlete) for her undergraduate degree. She then received her medical degree from the Dartmouth/Brown joint medical program. She went on to complete her OB/GYN residency at Brown University, in Providence, RI. After her finishing her training 16 years ago, she moved to sunny San Diego to start her practice (and enjoy the beach volleyball). Her passion for politics has evolved from mere interest into a driving force in her life. This is largely due to wanting to make the world a better place for her two young children. When she relaxes (but who can relax at a time like this?) she enjoys knitting and playing volleyball.


Kristi Blackburn, Member

Meetings and Membership

Ana Anderson, Co-Chair

Phifer Crute, Member

Publicity Committee

Jen Gamez, Member - Jennifer Glickman Gamez is the mother of three children, married to Daniel Gamez, and Managing Director of the Gamez Law Firm. In the past Jennifer has worked in marketing and corporate relations for the San Diego Opera, Houston Museum of Natural Science and the Houston Rockets. She is an active volunteer at her children’s three schools including founding member of Bird Rock Elementary’s Green Team environmental club. Jennifer is a lover of the outdoors, meditation, running, friends and cooking. She supports the rights of women, children, and minorities; as well as the protection of the environment. Jennifer’s focus is the progressive movement to resist Trump by flipping Congress in 2018.


Chandra Teitscheid Bishop, Member

Fundraising Committee

Mira Costello, Treasurer and Chair

Stephanie O'Brien, Member

Communications Committee

Elizabeth Tobias, Chair - Elizabeth Tobias is an artist, activist and mental health facilitator creating immersive works of art and public events that address timely humanitarian issues such as discrimination, food scarcity and climate change. Her multi-media projects serve to increase public awareness, provoke constructive dialogue and to promote peace and progress.

She earned a Durfee ARC Grant for The Cupcake Project, which was featured at The Carpenter Center for Visual Arts at Harvard, The Utah Museum of Contemporary Art and The Guggenheim Gallery at Chapman University. Tobias also conceptualized  SEE THRU, an experimental collaboration with Caltech Professor, Shinsuke Shimojo, and a group of artists from Los Angeles Art Association. Her site specific performance piece ”I Just Love You” was featured at a project space during Art Basel and Art Basel in Miami.
In 2014, Elizabeth was awarded a Learning Innovation Fellowship from The National Science Foundation to co-design functional sculptures that introduced a new source of fresh drinking water.  From 2015 until now, Tobias has worked as a therapeutic artist through The Expressive Arts Institute to support the most marginalized and vulnerable populations in her community. On shifting her practice away from object-making and commercialized art, she quotes Sister Chan Khong, " When you want something... you can just go out and buy it but when you want something extraordinary, like love, understanding, and peace for a whole nation, you have to pay for it with something much more precious than money."


Lauren Archer, Member

Kristi Blackburn, Member


Voter Registration Committee

Lydia Thompson, Chair


Seniors Committee

Carolyn Shadle, Chair

Carolyn Shadle, PhD, is pleased to serve as chair of the Seniors Committee. She lives at the White Sands senior residence in La Jolla, where she works with CSMAD (Concerned Seniors Making a Difference). This is a group that formed to
protect progressive values following the election of Trump. She is also the VP of Communication for the La Jolla Democratic Club.
Her degree is in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication and she continues to write, train, and facilitate, using her interest and expertise working through the education corporation which she founded (known as Interpersonal
Communication Services, Inc. She writes and trains with her husband, John Meyer, Ph.D. They most recently authored Positive People  Experiences: 8 Ingredients for Business Success, and Communication Case Studies: Building Interpersonal Communication Skills in the Veterinary Practice.

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