Our DIVERSITY Trainers
Areeba Siddiqui is a Pakistani Muslim woman born and raised in Sacramento, CA. As an active member of her community, she continuously takes initiative to address the unique needs in her community. In 2015 Areeba co-founded Amala Hopeline. Amala Hopeline is a confidential, culturally competent, accessible means for Muslim youth to reach out for help around unique challenges they face. Areeba continues to manage the Hopeline while completing her MSW program at California State University, Northridge. As one of the few Muslim social workers in her community, she independently offers workshops on a variety of topics from nutrition and wellness to self care, mental health, domestic violence and sexual assault. Following her passion to offer education on important topics to the Muslim community, Areeba became a trainer for HEART in 2017, offering workshops on sexual violence within Muslim communities.
Gimel Rogers, Psy.D. is a licensed psychologist and the Training Director of the Professional Clinical and Forensic Services department at the Institute on Violence, Abuse, and Trauma (IVAT). She earned her doctorate from Pepperdine University and has provided trauma-focused care with clients from the Children of the Night Program, the Ventura Youth Correctional Facility, FCI Terminal Island, and community programs serving survivors of intimate partner violence. She utilizes an array of therapeutic interventions with an emphasis on cognitive behavioral therapy. Dr. Rogers presently works with survivors who are recovering from emotional, physical, and sexual abuse. Additionally, she assists clients who are involved in criminal, family, and civil cases involving a broad range of forensic issues. Having published in the areas of culture, coping, spirituality, and trauma, she is an adjunct professor at Pepperdine University and Point Loma Nazarene University. Her inaugural book is the “21-Day Relationship Healing Devotional and Journal” a poetry-based devotional that promotes restoration through reflection.Dr. Rogers dedicates time and energy to individuals across the world through her organization Fearless Individuals Resistant to Entrapment (F.I.R.E.) and its brand One Temple Fitness.
Lena Moran is a native of Mexico City, Mexico and was raised in Santa Barbara, California where she moved to at the age of six. Lena earned a Bachelor's Degree in Liberal Studies from Antioch University Santa Barbara, where she did research on the topic of children who are used as interpreters. Lena completed her Master's Degree in Education with an emphasis on Social Justice and Leadership, also at Antioch, with her thesis focusing on the creation of an evaluation system of interpretation and translation services in school districts. Lena is also a graduate of the Antioch University Women & Leadership certificate program, where her experiential leadership project focused on increasing language access across the Central Coast.
Lena has a passion for language justice and has utilized her skills in various capacities, from starting a Young Interpreters Club, to providing interpretation at assemblies, conferences and meetings and translating a variety of documents. At Just Communities, Lena is the Program Manager for the Language Justice Initiative. Lena is also a licensed trainer for The Community Interpreter International, a program of Cross-Cultural Communications. In 2018, Lena and the Language Justice Network received a Congressional Recognition for providing language access services during and after the Thomas Fire and Montecito Mudslides disasters.
Dr. Mariela G. Shibley is a clinical and forensic psychologist with a private practice in San Diego, California. She specializes in issues around acculturation, immigration, and trauma and is a leading expert in conducting psychological evaluations for USCIS and Immigration Court. Since 2007, she has conducted and supervised over 2,000 of such evaluations and provided court testimony, training, and education on immigration and mental health. She was a guest speaker at several conferences of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) and is sought after for her knowledge and expertise in this arena.
Dr. Shibley supervises unlicensed mental health professionals who work within her private practice and is a volunteer clinical instructor in the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at the University of California San Diego. She has attended and presented numerous lectures on topics related to immigration and mental health and taught doctoral level classes at the California School of Forensic Studies, the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University, and at Argosy University in San Diego. Dr. Shibley is an active member of the San Diego Psychological Association, where she has served on the Board of Directors for two years and is currently a member of the Ethics and the Forensic Committees.
Sayida Peprah has a BA in Psychology from Spelman College, and PsyD in Clinical Psychology with a Multicultural Specialization, from the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University. Dr. Sayida’s study and work strongly emphasize multicultural awareness and in an effort to further this, she has participated in international cultural immersion studies. Previously, she has traveled to Ghana, Mexico, Egypt and India, studying mental health approaches, indigenous culture and local spiritual traditions.
Dr. Sayida has a multi-faced career as a clinician, educator and consultant and specializes in multicultural psychology, trauma, suicide prevention and maternal mental health. As a clinical psychologist she has worked in community-based, in-home, psychiatric hospital and correctional settings. She is also an Associate Professor of Psychology for the University of Phoenix facilitating courses in Cultural and Correctional Psychology. Through her non-profit organization Diversity Uplifts, Inc., Dr. Sayida regularly offers cultural competency, mental health and maternal mental health trainings and workshops in the community and throughout the US. In 2014, she was a featured speaker at the United Nations 65thNGO Conference on the topic of Mental Illness, An Invisible Disabilites.
Sahar Pirzada is a Pakistani-American Muslim woman from the Bay Area. Her dedication to serving the Muslim community draws from her extensive experience working as a organizer and educator within community spaces. After graduating from UC Berkeley with a degree in Development Studies, Sahar moved to Singapore where she worked as a Project Coordinator for a UN-funded regional project on promoting gender-equitable interpretations of Islam for the full adoption of CEDAW (pronounced see-dah). Since moving back in 2015, she has continued her activism by challenging Islamophobia as Co-Chair of #VigilantLOVE where she creatively organizes against the mosque-to-prison pipeline. She is also the Programs & Outreach Manager for HEART where she explores the intersections of islamophobia and gender-based violence and supports survivors of sexual violence in the Muslim community. She is currently pursuing her masters of social work at USC in the social change and innovation track. Sahar's work has been featured in Teen Vogue, NPR, KPCC, Fusion's Sex Right Now and the LA Times.
Taquelia Washington has over 15 years of experience working as a School Social Worker. She holds a license in Clinical Social Work (LCSW) as well as a Pupil Personnel Services Credential (PPSC). In addition to her direct practice work with her clients, Ms. Washington also provides supervision to graduate level interns and facilitates workshops throughout California geared toward those in the mental health field. Taquelia is an engaging and dynamic speaker who brings all of herself to her individual work with youth as well as her teaching endeavors. Taquelia strives to create a safe space for her students to focus on their own healing, self-growth, and empowerment.