Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Carmen Rezak

Carmen Rezak

President

Carmen Rezak is a senior healthcare nurse leader with extensive expertise in Maternal-Child Health and a Women’s Healthcare Nurse Practitioner since 1988. She is a pioneer in leading hospitals promoting exclusive breastfeeding resulting in the Baby Friendly designation from the WHO/UNICEF of four hospitals, and the first hospital in Los Angeles County.

Joan Ortiz, RN, BSN, IBCLC, Co

Joan Ortiz, RN, BSN, IBCLC, Co

Past President and Fundraising Co-Chair

Joan is the founder of Limerick and President of Limerick ’s Workplace Lactation Program. She is responsible for a comprehensive breastfeeding support model that has been proven effective in Limerick ’s Research Study published in the Journal of Pediatric Nursing in 2004.

Summer Bridges

Summer Bridges

President Elect and Secretary

Summer Bridges is a Los Angeles-based attorney specializing in business transactions, business litigation, contract drafting, real estate, employment, and general liability. Her love for breastfeeding comes from her experience as a mother bonding with her one year old daughter.   She is extremely passionate about spreading the news on the numerous breastfeeding benefits for both baby and mother.

Stacey Armato, J.D.

Stacey Armato, J.D.

Treasurer

Stacey Armato serves as the board treasurer for BreastfeedLA and is a member of the Parent Advisory Council for Mattel’s Children’s Hospital UCLA. In 2014, Stacey settled a high profile lawsuit against the TSA for harassment related to breast milk screening. As part of the settlement, the TSA re-wrote their breast milk policy and re-trained all TSA employees on the proper handling of breast milk.

Denise Parker, IBCLC

Denise Parker, IBCLC

Fundraising Co-Chair

Denise Parker is an international board certified lactation consultant who retired from Kaiser Permanente in Southern California after 21 years. She has a degree in Human Development with a specialization in lactation from Pacific Oaks College in Pasadena.

Allison Casciato, MD

Allison Casciato, MD

Allison graduated from Oregon Health & Sciences University School of Medicine in 2014 with honors. At OHSU she worked with a community health clinic to investigate pediatric quality health measures related to the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA). She completed her specialty training in Pediatrics at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in 2017 and moved with her husband to Los Angeles where she currently works as a community pediatrician at Eisner Health, a FQHC, in downtown Los Angeles. She chose a career in primary care because she enjoys talking with families about preventive health including the benefits of breastfeeding and vaccines.

Rosemarie Cervantes MSN/Ed., RN

Rosemarie Cervantes MSN/Ed., RN

Rosemarie Cervantes has been a perinatal nurse for 25 years. She is currently the assistant unit manager for the mother baby unit at Miller Children’s and Women Hospital in Long Beach.

Maggie Whitman RN, IBCLC

Maggie Whitman RN, IBCLC

Maggie is a Registered Nurse (RN) of 20 years; and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) for Miller Children’s & Women’s Hospital Long Beach. She enjoys teaching RN staff, training new hires in Clinical Lactation, and of course, supporting new mothers and families.

Linda Goldman DNP, MSN

Linda Goldman DNP, MSN

Linda Goldman is the current Past-President of the Board of Directors and has been a Nurse Practitioner for over 25 years. She is board certified as both a Family and Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner, and is a Certified Lactation Educator.

Leila Yoonessi M.D., MPH

Leila Yoonessi M.D., MPH

Advisory Board

Dr. Leila Yoonessi is a pediatrician and pediatric pulmonologist in Long Beach, California. Dr. Yoonessi is the medical doctor at MY Pediatrics and Respiratory Care Clinic. Certified by the Board of Pediatrics and a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Dr. Yoonessi has been practicing Pediatrics and Pediatric Pulmonary medicine in Long Beach for 4 years.

If interested in joining the board or have questions please email:  info@breastfeedla.org