About Us

CALPCC Board of Directors 2017-18

Executive Committee Officers

  • President: Cara Maffini, Ph.D.
  • Past President: Margaret O’Hara, M.S., LPCC, LMHC (NY)
  • President-Elect: Shyrea Minton, Ed.D., LPCC, PPS
  • Treasurer: Jeff Bornstein, M.S., LPCC
  • Secretary: Anita Sankar, Ph.D.


  • Nola Butler Byrd, Ph.D., LPCC
  • Arolyn Burns, M.A., LPCC, LMFT
  • Sarah Callow-St. George, MA, LPCC
  • Julie Chronister, Ph.D.
  • Bonni Funk, M.A., LPCC, LMHC (FL)
  • David Peterson, Ph.D., CRC, NCC, LMHC (IA-inactive)
  • Karen Quek, Ph.D., LPCC, LMFT
  • Dione Taylor, Ed.D., PPS
  • Christopher Wehrle, MA, PCCI (Student/Intern Representative)

Executive Director:  Dean Porter

Lobbyist:  G.V. Ayers

Board Bios

Cara Maffini, Ph.D.

Cara Maffini is the CALPCC President for 2017-2018. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Child and Adolescent Development at San José State University. Her research examines intersections of race, culture, and mental health specifically focusing on experiences related to violence and victimization among bicultural youth and young adults. With her PhD in Counseling Psychology, she has had diverse counseling experiences and enjoys work related to multicultural and social justice issues particularly among adolescents and emerging adults. Within CALPCC, she chaired the 2016 CALPCC Conference, served as Conference Program chair in 2017, and has served as Education chair. She is excited to further the mission and vision of CALPCC in the coming year.

Margaret A. O’Hara, LPCC, LMHC (NY), NCC,  PPS

Margaret O’Hara is Immediate Past-President of CALPCC and chairs Nominations, Bylaws and Private Practice Committees. As a board member the past three years, she chaired the Ethics Committee and was the San Diego Networking Group Chair. She is a consultant with a private counseling practice in Northern San Diego. An LPCC (CA) and LMHC (NY) she is also a Distance Credentialed Counselor for clients in both states. She is a National Certified Counselor with 25+ years experience in the field, working as Clinical Director, Clinical Supervisor, Private Practitioner, Assistant Professor and School Counselor. She is a Certified Experiential Therapist. Named 'Counselor of the Year' by the East End Counselors Association, she served 7 years on their Executive Board. She was Division President of ASGW for NY Counseling Association. Margaret holds state (NY) and international substance abuse counselor certification and is a Human Services Board Certified Practitioner.

Shyrea J. Minton, Ed.D., LPCC, PPS

Shyrea is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Psychology and Counseling at California State University, Northridge. Her research explores the development of multicultural counseling competency in professional school counselors-in-training, how counselors engage with Black students in education settings, and the professional identity of professional school counselors. In addition, she is very interested in examining the provision of mental health services in school settings, and any implications for mental health providers. She is an LPCC in California, and holds a PPS credential (school counseling); prior to entering higher education, she was a professional school counselor. This year, “I want to continue to focus on improving our outreach efforts to graduate training programs and others across California, and increasing the organization’s educational course offerings.”

Jeffrey Bornstein, MS, LPCC, NCC

Jeff is an LPCC in private practice in Los Angeles. Jeff specializes in treating panic attacks and anxiety disorders with a mindfulness based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy approach. Jeff was the past CALPCC regional coordinator for LA County, the past Southern California CALPCC representative on the California Disaster Mental Health Coalition board, and the past chairman of the Membership Committee on the CALPCC board. He is looking forward to paying bills and collecting membership dues as CALPCC’s Treasurer.

Anita Sankar, Ph.D.

Dr. Anita Sankar is an associate professor and system-wide program director of the Masters in Clinical Counseling at Alliant University and is a recent transplant from the East Coast. She graduated with a Masters in School Counseling and a Ph.D. in Counselor Education from the University of Iowa, and has twenty years of experience in teaching and directing counseling degree programs, including a 6 year stint as Program Director for an international Masters in School Counseling degree program in Singapore for the State University of New York at Buffalo. For the past two years, she has enjoyed serving on the CALPCC Education Committee and she looks forward to serving on the CALPCC Executive Board to advocate and enhance the professional development for LPCCs, as well as foster greater career opportunities for them especially at the county level. Her research, teaching and service interests are in mindfulness and spirituality in counseling as well as the role of cultural humility and social justice advocacy in counseling.

Nola Butler Boyd, Ph.D., LPCC

Dr. Butler Byrd is an associate professor and program director of the San Diego State University Community-Based Block Multicultural Counseling and Social Justice Education Program. She is also an LPCC and a certified Radix Body-Centered Personal Growth Work practitioner. For the past three years, she has enjoyed serving on the CALPCC Legislative Committee and has served as a CALPCC board member for since 2016 because she values the civic and community engagement that Dr. Cornel West, alluded to in his quote, "Justice is what love looks like in public”, and the empowerment that Alice Walker suggests in her quote, "The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any". Her research, teaching and service focus on multicultural and social justice competence in education, research and practice; educational equity, mental health service access; and diverse faculty retention and promotion.

Arolyn Burns MA, LPCC, LMFT

Arolyn is the Director of The A Treatment Center, an international speaker & repeat guest on national television, speaking on subjects ranging from stress & anger management to leadership & transformation. She works with clients dealing with phobias, performance anxiety on tests, stage & professional sports. She is certified in Hypnotherapy, Mediation, Crisis Counseling & as a John Maxwell Speaker, Coach & Trainer. She received the Los Angeles County Cornelia Funke Award for Exceptional Social Work, practices EMDR & is an FEI Crisis Responder. As a member of the MFI Critical Incident Support Team she volunteered at the Cajun Dome for hurricane Katrina. She completed an intensive training in Film studies at the Los Angeles Film Studies Center, allowing her to work with a personal understanding of Entertainment professionals. Arolyn Burns has a passion for helping individuals realize their dreams, conquer their fears & improve their self-esteem.

Sarah Callow-St. George, MA, LPCC

Sarah is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor working in private practice in Huntington Beach, CA. She received her M.A. in Clinical Psychology with a specialization in counseling from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Chicago, IL and holds a B.S. in Psychology and Women’s Studies from Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, MI. Sarah’s counseling experience has focused on trauma and addiction issues, as well as couples work. In addition to her work as a therapist, Sarah has also gained research experience as a project coordinator at University of California, Irvine, where she worked with a dual diagnosis population with an emphasis on violent and self-harming thoughts and behaviors. CALPCC has been an integral part in Sarah’s career transition from the Midwest to California and she looks forward to contributing as a board member and committee chair.

Julie Chronister, Ph.D.

Julie Chronister is a professor in the Department of Counseling at San Francisco State University and coordinator of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program. She received her PhD from University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has been a faculty member in counselor training programs for 14 years and has taught a variety of counseling courses (e.g., assessment, biopsychosocial aspects of health/ behavioral health, internship, research methods, and psychological foundations). Dr. Chronister has published over 50 articles, books chapters, and is co-editor of three books. She is the PI on two federally funded training grants and one NIMH research grant. Her current research focuses on the conceptualization and measurement of social support among those with the most disabling psychiatric conditions. Dr. Chronister has years of experience working with accreditation bodies, licensure and certification bodies, conducting program evaluation, and partnering with the community. She is on the editorial board for several counseling journals and provides editorial work for counseling, psychology, and social science journals.

Bonni Funk,  M.A., LPCC, LMHC (FL)

Bonni is an LPCC and LMHC (Florida) with a private practice in Los Angeles and a telehealth presence in Florida and California. Her specialties include anxiety/depression reduction for those with codependency, as well as special needs children and teens (particularly those on the autism scale). She also specializes in trauma using Eye Movement Desensitization and Processing (EMDR). She was the past CALPCC regional coordinator for LA County and is a Southern California CALPCC representative on the California Disaster Mental Health Coalition board. She is excited about educating others on the LPCC license and promoting CALPCC to students, interns and licensed professional counselors.

David Peterson, Ph.D., CRC, NCC

David B Peterson, PhD, Professor at Cal State LA, is a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, licensed mental health counselor (LMHC, IA-inactive), and licensed clinical psychologist (CA, IL) with expertise in disability and function. A counselor educator within programs accredited by the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) and the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) for the past two decades, currently he serves as a Medical Expert for the Social Security Administration for adult and child psychiatric disability cases. He has contributed to 61 scholarly publications, 46 local and national presentations, directed six research and training grants totaling over $1.7 million, and is a member of four editorial boards for peer-reviewed journals.

Karen Quek, Ph.D., LPCC, LMFT

Karen Quek is the program director for MHC/MFT programs at Bethel University, San Diego. Karen is a LMFT and LPCC. She appreciates and respects cultural diversity, and is dedicated to the growth of the next generation of helping professionals. Her passion is to develop culturally competent professionals. Karen has extensive clinical and supervisory experiences for over 20 years. She has worked in various mental health settings including non-profit organizations and private practice. Her innovative research reflects her expertise and interests in multicultural clinical work, cross-cultural family dynamics, and gender equality, and has resulted in numerous publications and research presentations, including her 2017 co-authored book, Transition and Change in Collectivist Family Life: Strategies for Clinical Practice with Asian Americans.

Dione Taylor, Ed.D.

Dione Taylor earned her B.S. degree in Sociology from William Woods College, her M.A. Degree in School Counseling from Point Loma Nazarene University, her M.A. degree in Clinical Psychology from Alliant International University, and her Doctorate in Educational Leadership form Northern Arizona University. She is currently a Professor and Director of the Counseling program at Point Loma Nazarene University. In addition to her administrative and teaching responsibilities, she works with program graduates who are pursuing their LPCC licensure. “I am excited to serve as a CALPCC Board member and to increase the recognition of LPCC’s in the field of mental health, throughout California. “

Christopher Wehrle, MA, PCCI, NCC - Student/Intern Representative

Chris is grateful to support the advancement and recognition of the Counseling profession through serving as the Student/Intern Representative. Mr. Wehrle appreciates the diversity of the mental health field through conducting research to advance evidence-based treatment interventions for individuals struggling with co-occurring disorders, while providing clinical mental health counseling to diverse and underserved clients. After receiving his Masters degree in Mental Health Counseling from University of San Diego, Mr. Wehrle initiated his clinical and research career as a study therapist, investigating progressive treatment interventions for substance use disorders. Mr. Wehrle currently serves as the Executive Director of Los Angeles based drug and alcohol rehab, Comprehensive Recovery Network, and as a Professional Clinical Counselor Intern at the Union of Pan Asian Communities in San Diego. His current goal is to help establish the counseling profession in California, and abolish the dreaded question from potential employers, “What on Earth is an LPCC?!”

Dean Porter, MS - Executive Director

Having led the effort to achieve licensure for counselors in California, my goal now is to establish our profession in California and get our association, which supports the license and its licensees, up and running efficiently.  Before devoting full time to counselor licensure in California, I was a career counselor, working with adults in my private practice and within organizations.  I was certified as a National Certified Counselor (NCC) and a National Certified Career Counselor (NCCC).

G. V. Ayers - CALPCC Lobbyist

G.V. Ayers, founder and owner of Gentle Rivers Consulting LLC, is proud to serve as CALPCC’s lobbyist. He has 20+ years in California state government as Consultant to the Senate Business and Professions Committee and as a Bureau Chief in the Department of Consumer Affairs. His firm provides legislative advocacy and consulting services on a broad range of government programs and professional regulatory law. Contact him at (916) 316-7459 or gv@gentlerivers.com.

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