Our Team

All
Board of Directors
Leadership

Dr. Norma Blackwater

Acting Medical Director
Dr. Norma Blackwater

Acting Medical Director

Celestina Castillo

Board Secretary
Celestina Castillo

Board Secretary

Ms. Castillo is the Executive Director of the California Native Vote Project (CNVP). Celestina has worked with a wide range of community-based organizations focused on education, community and workforce development, advocacy and organizing throughout Los Angeles. She directed the Center for Community Based Learning (CCBL) at Occidental College for over a decade where she began working on building a historical photo archive for UAII in partnership with organizational staff and community members, as well as students and scholars. Celestina earned her BA in History at Pomona College, a MS in Urban Policy Analysis and Management at New School University in New York, and is currently in a PhD program in Gender Studies at UCLA. Celestina is Tohono O'odham and Chicana/Mexican-American. Her family has lived in Los Angeles for four generations.

Luis Cervantes

Chief Executive Officer
Luis Cervantes

Chief Executive Officer

Bio coming soon...

Pearl Dayzie

Board Member
Pearl Dayzie

Board Member

earl Dayzie (Navajo) My clan is Ta'chiinii. I've lived in Los Angeles for 50 yrs. Attended boarding school in Dilkon and Holbrook, Arizona in 1974- 1979 where I loved growing up with my Grandparents, Aunties, and Uncle's. After graduating from high school, I then worked at the Indian Center for a Daycare and Preschool/Head Start program. I went on to continue my education at East L.A College and Compton Community College.(Child Development). I worked at Pasadena Montessori Preschool from 1988-90. Then went on to have a growing family and put my focus on raising my kids. Did childcare for Uaii Staff from 1999-2004. In charge of the Native American Indian League for 15 yrs (co-ed Basketball and Volleyball). I am devoted to Uaii not only as a board member but more so as an active community/volunteer member too.

Ramon Enriquez

Director of Youth Services
Ramon Enriquez

Director of Youth Services

Mr. Ramon Enriquez serves as the Director of Youth Services for United American Indian Involvement, Inc. and oversees the American Indian Clubhouse, Central High School - UAII Branch, and the Robert Sundance Summer Camp. He has served the American Indian community since 2000 working in various capacities at United American Indian Involvement - both as a volunteer and as an employee. He also served as a Mayoral-appointed Commissioner on the Los Angeles City/County American Indian Commission and has worked on a variety of issues concerning the American Indian community including youth, veterans, and mental health. He has also served as a Stakeholder Delegate for the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health and was an Advisory Board member for the Circle of Care Project at UAII, and currently serves as a Board Member for Inter Tribal Sports, which is an American Indian youth sports league that covers several counties throughout Southern California. Other professional associations include membership with the Native American Veterans Association, the Boys Scouts of America, the American Camp Association, and USA Archery. Mr. Enriquez received a Bachelors of Science in Political Science with a Minor in American Indian Studies from the University of California at Los Angeles.

Alfonso Garcia

Director, Wellness Center
Alfonso Garcia

Director, Wellness Center

Dr. Andrea Garcia

Board Chairperson
Dr. Andrea Garcia

Board Chairperson

Dr. Andrea Garcia, Board Member, Director of Community Centered Initiatives | Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health.

Dr. Garcia is a citizen of the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation, and she is Mexican American. She was born and raised in Los Angeles where she credits her family and the local Native community for equipping her with the tools necessary to complete higher education. She participates in the pow wow circle as a fancy shawl dancer and has benefited from the programming offered by our longstanding organizations since she was in middle school. Dr. Garcia trained in General and Preventive Medicine and completed a fellowship with the National Clinician Scholars Program at UCLA in research and policy. She is a proud graduate of the UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program where she obtained her master's degree in health and medical sciences from UC Berkeley, and her medical degree from UCSF. She serves as a Mayoral Appointee for the L.A. City/County Native American Indian Commission, and she is excited to serve on the boards of We Are Healers and Building the Next Generation of Academic Physicians. In her spare time, Dr. Garcia loves to eat, run, then eat some more!

Eric Honanie

Director of Operations
Eric Honanie

Director of Operations

Eric James Honanie (Navajo, Hopi, Choctaw), Director of Operations, has worked for United American Indian Involvement, Inc. since 2001. Mr. Honanie has managed various facility and logistical support duties serving all programs at UAII. Mr. Honanie has been responsible for Vehicle Management, as well as Facilities Management. He has a strong passion for Emergency Planning and is the agency Safety Compliance Officer. He is also a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) member and has attended national training provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Currently, Mr. Honanie is a Board Member of the Emergency Network of Los Angeles.

Dr. Carrie Johnson

Director of Seven Generations Child & Family Services
Dr. Carrie Johnson

Director of Seven Generations Child & Family Services

Dr. Carrie Johnson (Wahpeton Dakota) is a licensed clinical psychologist and the Director of the Seven Generations Child and Family Counseling Center at United American Indian Involvement in Los Angeles, California. For the last 20 years, Dr. Johnson has provided Behavioral Health services to American Indians in Los Angeles County, including mental health treatment, grant writing, integrating traditional healing into services and evaluation of the services. Dr. Johnson is involved with local county-wide and State wide advisory boards to increase the access and cultural competence of services provided to Native Americans. She is also an experienced trainer and consultant in the impact of intergenerational trauma on Indian children, families, and communities; and provides consultation, training, and workshops on a Community and Family Healing Model she has developed. Dr. Johnson also provides TA on program development, grant writing, evaluation and direct services for Native Americans.

Jonelle McGee

Health Project Director
Jonelle McGee

Health Project Director

Olga Meyer

Director of Finance
Olga Meyer

Director of Finance

Olga Meyer joined the United America Indian Involvement, Inc, as Director of Finance in September 2019 bringing nearly 20 years of experience in various organizations including Fortune 500 companies. She has a rich and varied experience in multiple finance and leadership roles in America. Her extensive leadership experience is augmented by an undergraduate degree in Economics and Industrial Engineering.

Over the past year, she has been working with the UAII where she has successfully implemented strict internal controls, leading and creating the $15m annual budget for the UAII, Inc in collaboration with departments. She has advocated and has executed multiple process automation initiatives to bring about efficiency to the UAII, Inc. operations. She has been able to do this on the back of a successful track record of leading the finance team deliver to challenging goals under demanding timelines.

She always strives towards creating a productive, welcoming and friendly work environment, encouraging every team member to achieve their very best to collectively accomplish the UAII, Inc. goals. Her leadership mantra “Communication, teamwork, commitment and positivity”. Along with management and finance accomplishments she enjoys taking care of her pets, bicycling, photography and hiking. She has been happily married for 20 years.

Mandy Dawn Nickerson

Board Treasurer
Mandy Dawn Nickerson

Board Treasurer

Mandy Dawn Nickerson, (Blackfeet, Gros Ventre). Mandy relocated from the Blackfeet Reservation, in Heart Butte Montana to Inglewood, California in 1970. From 1999 to 2013 she volunteered for the Indian Alcoholism Commission of Los Angeles County. Mandy is also a United States Navy Veteran and she has 18 years experience as an Indian Federal Law and Policy, and Tribal Law Paralegal. Her career has provided her the opportunity to travel and work with various Tribal Governments throughout the United States and assist the Deputy Federal Public Defender of Los Angeles. Mandy also brings 10 years experience in the mortgage industry where she acted as a liaison between clients, the private sector and federal programs. Mandy received her Paralegal Certification from Cal State University Northridge, in 1996 and in 2015; she graduated from the University of California at Los Angeles, with her Certification in Native American Studies. However, Mandy’s true passion and main focus is assisting with Indian Child Welfare Act Cases, and served on the Los Angeles County Stakeholders Indian Child Welfare Act Board and the National Native American Bar Association. Baba Cooper, Oneida, Lakota, and Blackfeet from Fort Peck, Montana, and the Co-founder/Executive Director of United American Indian Involvement, was a close friend and it is a true honor to serve the community while carrying on Baba’s vision and mission.

Joseph Quintana

Development Director
Joseph Quintana

Development Director

Joseph Quintana Tribe: (Kewa)
Mr. Quintana joined United American Indian Involvement in the fall of 2015 to lead the organization's new development projects. During this time he has increased the visibility of the organization, developed new- and maintained
existing partnerships, and been involved in diversification of funding sources. Mr. Quintana’s work has improved the health outcomes of community members and ensured that education and training will increase the economic health of Native people in Los Angeles. Joseph and his family are active participants in the LA Native community and plan on continuing to serve the needs of the American Indian people as a mayoral appointee to the Los Angeles City/ County Native American Indian Commission.

Heather Torres

Vice-Chairperson
Heather Torres

Vice-Chairperson

Heather Torres (San Ildefonso Pueblo, Navajo) [she/her/hers] is a graduate of UCLA School of Law's Critical Race Studies program, where she focused her courses and research on Federal Indian law and the racialization of American Indian identity. Currently, she is the Program Director for the Tribal Law and Policy Institute. From 2018-2019, Heather served as Director of Native Student Programs (NSP) at the University of Redlands. Heather was the founding staff of NSP when the program was created in 2011, serving as Creating a Passion for Learning Coordinator. Heather's work in education started during her undergraduate years at UCLA where she was a student leader in the American Indian Student Association overseeing the American Indian Recruitment and Retention of American Indians Now! projects. This is where her involvement and commitment to UAII ignited, tutoring and mentoring students at Central High School. Her passion for education continues today through her work on the board of the American Indian Scholarship Fund of Southern California and active membership in the American Indian Alumni at UCLA. Heather earned her BAs in English and American Indian Studies in 2011, her MA in Collaborative Educational Leadership in 2014, and her J.D. in 2017. She is licensed to practice law in the State of California.

Keith H. Vielle

Board Member
Keith H. Vielle

Board Member

My name is Keith H. Vielle. I am an enrolled member of the Blackfeet Nation of Montana. I have been a community member since 1963. My family was a part of the Relocation Act of the 1950’s. I am currently employed with the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health in the American Indian Unit for the past 13 years. I am a member of NAVA veterans group, as well as a Honor Guard member since 2003. I recently completed 1 year as a Co-Chair with DMH UsCC committee. The UsCC Committee has provided a American Indian mental health conference for the community for the past 8 years as a way to overcome and understand the stigma of mental health and substance abuse. I have interacted with United American Indian Involvement organization in both a professional manner as well as a community member for over 20 years. My interaction with the Clubhouse as a certified Archery coach and a summer camp mentor has given me a sense of pride to be a part of an organization that sets the standard in American Indian health care, substance abuse as well as the very best in social services for our community. The key to UAII success as I believe is it listens to the community needs. Since day one, it has always been a beacon of hope for our people. We as a community can rely on UAII for support and to help us meet our goals and become a more stronger and healthier community.

Rene Williams

Director of Workforce Development
Rene Williams

Director of Workforce Development

Rene’ Williams, Director of Workforce Development
Rene’(Colville), grew up and was raised on her reservation including boarding school, Rene’ is committed to working towards health equity (by building partnerships with consumers, businesses, Tribes, and community organizations) to address health disparities and the social determinants of health for indigenous people. During her 20 years of service with various Tribal entities and non-profits, Rene’ held various leadership positions throughout the United States. She developed and implemented numerous health, educational, workforce development, and youth programs including two large regional tribally designed TANF programs among many HHS, DOL, DOI, DOE, and HUD projects.