WHS SoCal

About

Motivate. Drive. Inspire.

 

Mission

Through networking, professional development, and philanthropic opportunities, our goal is to help make the journey as a woman in the field of homeland security a positive one. We foster a collaborative environment for industry professionals to learn about the discipline and build connections to better understand the roles of public and private sector practitioners in the prevention, protection and response to any type of incident. We’re proud to be the first West Coast organization of this kind, focused on building the homeland security community and improving our nation’s security and intelligence on critical issues.

 
 
 

Board of Directors

 
 
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President

Michelle Constant, MBA

Michelle Constant is the Chief Executive Officer of Constant Associates, a homeland security consulting firm. Ms. Constant brings 20 years of experience in the industry and is recognized for spearheading innovative endeavors in health security, healthcare preparedness and emergency management. Award winning and published, Ms. Constant is known for her leadership as an industry expert and business executive. As an engaged contributor to the field, she has spoken at the National Homeland Security Conference, the International Association of Emergency Managers Conference, the National Preparedness Summit and several others.  She has been published in prints such as the Crisis Response Journal and the International Association of Emergency Managers trade publication. Ms. Constant earned a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Southern California, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from California State University San Marcos, as well as dozens of other sector and threat-specific certifications.  She serves as an active mentor for USC Marshall School of Business' Women's Mentorship Program.  Ms. Constant is a California native and lives in the South Bay with her husband and sons. 

 

 
 
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Director of Public Affairs

Naomi Goldman

Naomi Goldman is Principal of NLG Communications, a Los Angeles-based public relations, public affairs and crisis management firm. With more than 20 years experience, Goldman is recognized as a communications practitioner who safeguards reputations, engages communities and advances business and policy agendas. She has directed crisis and emergency management programs to help public agencies, nonprofits and Fortune 500 companies prepare for and respond to complex, high-profile crises including public safety and security threats, natural disasters, data breaches, labor strikes, litigation, legislative and regulatory actions and media attacks. She regularly conducts trainings on emergency preparedness, disaster response and recovery, crisis communications and public safety in conjunction with the California Emergency Management Agency, American Red Cross, U.S. Department of Homeland Security and local law enforcement. Her clients have included Metrolink, California Dept. of Health Services, CalEMA, Anthem Blue Cross, Universal Studios, UCLA, American Red Cross, Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, J. Paul Getty Trust and the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. Goldman is a trained Emergency Preparedness presenter and Co-Chair of the American Red Cross Northern Valleys Board of Directors. Her work has received numerous awards and she is a frequent lecturer and media source on crisis communications and social impact programs. She received her degree in Political Science from UCLA.

 

 
 
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director of programs

Mona Bontty, MBA

Mona Bontty serves as the Southern Regional Administrator for the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services which includes overseeing emergency management and response operations in a region that spans 11 Counties, nearly 65,000 miles and serves a population of over 21,000,000 residents. Since her appointment as Regional Administrator in August 2013, Ms. Bontty has managed response to many varying types of emergency events throughout the region. Ms. Bontty has over 26 years of experience in State Service including positions with various leadership roles in environmental mitigation and remediation of hazardous cleanup sites, public affairs, community engagement and leading strategic planning for operational initiatives. She is a certified Emergency Manager with a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Management and a UCLA undergraduate degree in Psychology. She resides in La Verne with her husband and twin daughter and son.

 

 
 
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Director of membership

Arpen Shadkamyan, MA

Arpen Shadkamyan, a highly-motivated emergency manager with over ten years of experience in emergency response and management, obtained her Master’s in Emergency Management from the American Military University after conferring a B.S. in Economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Shadkamyan has implemented leading concepts in emergency management and business continuity for one of the nation’s top universities. She contributed to the development of a modern approach to continuity planning for institutions of higher education, which was implemented at all ten University of California campuses. With vast knowledge in emergency management and business continuity, she serves as an adjunct instructor with Cal OES.

 

 
 
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Director of philanthropy

Brandy Chappell, PhD

Dr. Brandy N. Chappell has a strong background in campaign, events management, government, and non-profit organization work. She worked as a staff member for elected officials, at educational institutions and for community and economic development corporations. Dr. Chappell received baccalaureate and graduate degrees from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and the University of Southern California. She specializes in Urban and Social Policy, Economic Development, Geographic Information Science and Technology (GIST) and Public Health. She is a German Marshall Memorial Fund Trans-Atlantic Fellow (2013), a National Association of University Women Fellow (2012), a Southern California Leadership Network Fellow (2010) and a graduate of the CORO Neighborhood Leadership Program (2006). She serves as a member of the Board of Director’s for the Southern California Leadership Network and for Women in Homeland Security-Southern California. She is a member of the Pacific Council on International Policy and is a published author. She co-wrote “Rock the Vote: An Insider’s Account of the 2004 Campaign Strategy “in Tony Kelso and Brian Cogan’s, “Mosh the Polls: Youth Voters, Popular Culture, and Democratic Engagement. Dr. Chappell is the Master of Public Administration Program Faculty Director and, Center for Public Affairs Founding Director, at Azusa Pacific University. She specializes in local government and the use of GIST for data collection. A native Californian, she grew up in the Inland Empire, in the beautiful city of Rancho Cucamonga. Her lifetime goal is to demonstrate the science of public affairs- with a commitment to social responsibility. In her spare time, she likes reading, cooking and volunteering.

 

 
 
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Secretary

Lorraine Schneider

Lorraine Schneider is a rising emergency manager with experience in preparedness, response and recovery. Through her work as a training specialist, she has developed, facilitated, and implemented rigorous training and exercise programs serving the University of California, Los Angeles, as well as local jurisdictions, nonprofits and K-12 districts. She is the co-founder of KASSL Emergency Management Consulting, a firm specializing in training and exercise development for the public and private sector. Previous work at the City of Los Angeles Emergency Management Department included involvement in multifaceted projects, such as a review of the City's Terrorism Prevention & Protection Annex and  research into the link between disasters and domestic violence. Her contributions to  the City's pilot project on  Supply Chain Resiliency earned her  a  Certificate of Recognition by  LA City Mayor, Eric Garcetti.  Ms. Schneider is a member of the Pacific Council on International Policy. She earned a certificate  degree in Homeland Security & Emergency Management from UCLA Extension  and a Bachelor of Arts  degree in North American Studies  with a focus on U.S. foreign policy and war studies  from the  Freie  Universität Berlin. In 2014,  Ms. Schneider left her European  roots behind  to move  to West LA, where she currently resides with her wife. 

 

 
 
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Treasurer

Diana Manzano-Garcia, MA

Diana Manzano-Garcia serves as the Disaster Management Area Coordinator for Area D which is composed of the the 23 cities from the East San Gabriel/Pomona Valley, ad serves as a liaison between her cities and the County of Los Angeles. Mrs. Manzano-Garcia’s career expands over 10 years experience in Emergency Management in the public and non-profit sector. She obtained her Master’s in Public Administration from the University of La Verne with an emphasis in Governance, and a B.S. in Criminal Justice Administration from the University of Phoenix. Her experience in the non profit sector led her to develop various programs, plans and polices addressing Emergency Management, Business Continuity, Pediatric Surge, Hospital Surge, and Mass Fatality Incident Management and Medical Countermeasures, along with CBRNE training. Her passion for educating communities has led her to participate in various events promoting personal preparedness at home and in the workplace. Mrs. Manzano-Garcia serves as an adjunct instructor for the Hospital Disaster Management Trainnig program. She currently serves in various committee groups in the Los Angeles County Operational Area. She resides in Montclair with her husband and four dogs.

 

 
 

Committee Members

 

Programs committee

Sonia Brown, MN - California Governor's Office of Emergency Services