Overview    •    Schedule    •    Speakers and Guests    •    CE Credits    •    Sponsorship Info


Carolina Aristizabal, MD, MPH, CHES®| Manager, Office of Community Outreach & Engagement at University of Southern California (USC) Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center

Dr. Aristizabal is an occupational health physician with a master’s in public health and a certified community health educator specialist. She has experience for over 15 years working with underrepresented minorities from Latin American countries suffering from cancer and other chronic diseases. She is also a cancer researcher focused on reducing cancer health disparities among underserved populations. Dr. Aristizabal currently works as the manager for the office of community outreach and engagement at the University of Southern California (USC) Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center (NCCC).

Arash Asher, MD |  Director, Wellness, Resilience and Survivorship | Associate Professor, Medicine and PM&R at Cedars-Sinai Cancer

Dr. Arash Asher, MD has served as the Director of Cancer Survivorship & Rehabilitation at Cedars-Sinai since 2008. He has a special interest in the physical and rehabilitative needs of cancer survivors who continue to experience the effects of their cancer or its treatment. Dr. Asher has led the development of several unique cancer survivorship programs with his colleagues, including Emerging from the Haze, GRACE and others with the goal of optimizing physical, psychological, and spiritual resilience for patients with cancer. Dr. Asher completed a cancer rehabilitation fellowship at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.

Jennifer F. Kelly, PhD, ABPP | Director of the Atlanta Center for Behavioral Medicine and Past President of the American Psychological Association

Jennifer F. Kelly, PhD is the 2021 Past President of the American Psychological Association. She is Board Certified in Clinical Health Psychology and is the director of the Atlanta Center for Behavioral Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia. Her primary presidential initiative focused on psychology’s role in achieving health equity. In 2018, Dr. Kelly served as Co-Chair of the newly formed Advocacy Coordinating Committee of the American Psychological Association Services, Inc. A past president of the Georgia Psychological Association, Dr. Kelly has served as the Federal Advocacy Coordinator of the Association for 23 years. A graduate of the 2003 class of Leadership Atlanta, Dr. Kelly has been recognized on numerous occasions for her advocacy on behalf of psychology, including recognition by the APA Services, Inc. Practice Leadership Conference, for her leadership in advancing the profession of psychology through Federal Advocacy, and Legislative Award of the Georgia Psychological Association

Shannon La Cava, Psy.D. | Chief Clinical Officer, Director of Programs and Research at Cancer Support Community Los Angeles

Shannon La Cava, Psy.D. is a Clinical Psychologist specializing in Psychosocial Oncology and is the Chief Clinical Officer and Director of Programs & Research at Cancer Support Community Los Angeles. Her research interests focus on multi-disciplinary engagement to address health inequities and support the psychosocial needs of pediatric, young adult, and adult patients and caregivers. She is the current Chair of the Health Equity Committee of the American Psychological Association (APA) and active member of the American Psychosocial Oncology Society (APOS). Dr. La Cava has engaged as a community advisor and co-investigator in research collaborations with American Institute for Cancer Research, Kaiser Foundation Research Institute, Providence Saint John’s Health Center, Cedars Sinai Medical Center, UCLA Center for Cancer Prevention and Control Research, and California State University Long Beach.

Lisl Schweers, LCSW, OSW-C | Lead Clinical Social Worker at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles

Lisl Schweers is the lead psychosocial clinician for the LIFE Cancer Survivorship & Transition Service in the Cancer and Blood Disease Institute at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Her clinical interests include the incorporation of mindfulness-based practices into the psychosocial care of cancer survivors, healthcare transitions, and teaching advocacy skills to patients and families. Ms. Schweers recently served as the Legal and Advocacy Chair of the Association of Pediatric Oncology Social Workers. She is on the Professional Advisory Board for the Cancer Support Community Los Angeles, is a member of the Society for Social Work Leadership in Healthcare and the Association of Oncology Social Workers.

Scout, PhD | Executive Director at National LGBT Cancer Network

Scout is the Executive Director of the National LGBT Cancer Network and the principal investigator of the CDC-funded LGBTQ tobacco-related cancer disparity network. He spends much of his time providing technical assistance for governmental tobacco and cancer focusing agencies expanding their reach and engagement with LGBTQ+ populations. He leads a team of specialists who focus on building tools and sharing strategies across state departments of health. He has faculty appointments at both Brown University and Boston Universities’ Schools of Public Health. Scout has a long history in health policy analysis and a particular interest in expanding LGBTQ+ surveillance and research.

Keynote Speakers

Bill Kavanagh, LMFT | Therapist | Facilitator, Cancer Support Community Los Angeles

Bill Kavanagh is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, specializing in cancer, addiction, and LGBTQ issues.  He left his career as an entertainment producer when he was abruptly diagnosed with stage IV lymphoma.  That diagnosis changed his world and his purpose.  He recognized the importance of the lessons he learned through his cancer journey, and he refocused his new future into helping others.  Bill currently has a private practice in Palm Springs, California, he is a part-time counselor for LGBTQ Therapy Space, and he is a group facilitator for Cancer Support Community Los Angeles.  Bill also worked for five years as an addiction specialist with the Betty Ford Center.  He is currently in the publishing process for his book titled, “Keep Your Fork; Something Sweet is Coming.”

Roundtable Panelists

Barbara Gonzalez, Dignity Health

Yolanda Whittington, SISTAHFRIENDS

Kauser Ahmed, UCLA Simms Mann

Ana Rocha, Providence St. John’s

Dr. Caryn Whitacre, LA LGBT Center

Rhonda Smith, CA Black Health Network

Sylvia Ferullo Lopez

Shannon La Cava, CSCLA