About Breathe SoCal

About Us

At Breathe SoCal, our mission is to promote clean air and healthy lungs through research, education, advocacy and technology.

We work to provide resources that educate families living in the Southern California region to improve their community’s air quality and lung health.

There are 1.2 million California children who have asthma, and half of them have never been given an asthma management plan. Of the 1.2 million, 200,000 live in Los Angeles – a city with some of the nation’s worst air quality. We provide under-resourced neighborhoods with effective lung health services to change how they live their everyday lives. It can increase their access to proper healthcare, improve their overall health, and keep children in school. The fight for clean air is a tough battle, but it is possible.

We work with local experts, community members, and policymakers to advocate for the best practices in reclaiming the air you breathe and protecting every lung. We believe we are all in this together!

Help us end air pollution and usher in healthy lungs for all. Join us and make a lasting impact in your community.

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Our Focus

Breathe Southern California is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that promotes clean air and healthy lungs through  research, education, advocacy, and technology.

Our goals are to:
• promote education, support, and early diagnosis for individuals suffering from respiratory-related chronic conditions such as asthma, emphysema, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD);
• prevent lung disease by addressing its major causes: tobacco use and air pollution;
• to conduct research on lung disease;
• to promote clean technology and clean energy solutions to air pollution and climate change.

Our History

Breathe Southern California (Breathe SoCal) was first formed in 1903 as an independent lung health organization called the Los Angeles Society for the Study and Prevention of Tuberculosis. The organization served the city’s growing population of more than 300,000. For more than 30 years, the organization was committed to increasing public awareness about the tuberculosis (TB) epidemic and other lung-related diseases-including asthma, bronchitis and emphysema and working towards eradicating these diseases.

Since its creation in 1903, Breathe SoCal has undergone a number of name changes, including:

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Incorporated as Los Angeles Tuberculosis & Health Association

Los Angeles County Tuberculosis and Health Association

Tuberculosis & Health Association of Los Angeles County

Tuberculosis & Respiratory Disease Association of Los Angeles County

Lung Association of Los Angeles County

American Lung Association of Los Angeles County

BREATHE California of Los Angeles County

Breathe Southern California

Advances in technology, healthcare access and medicine all contributed to a dramatic downturn in active TB cases.

As a result, the organization began to take an increased interest in the relationships between air pollution and respiratory disease. During the mid-20th Century, the fight against smog in Los Angeles became a major effort and the measuring of air pollution began. In the early 1970s, the organization focused on the prevention and control of lung disease and sponsored extensive research on the effects of air pollution on respiratory health. We were one of the first organizations to do so and we carry on this tradition today. For a number of years, the organization was affiliated with the American Lung Association (ALA) and American Lung Association of California (ALAC). In 2006, the organization ended its affiliation with ALA and ALAC, and is no longer affiliated in any way with those organizations.

Breathe SoCal is a member of the Breathe America Alliance, a network of nationwide independent lung health organizations, and the Breathe California Coalition, which includes two other Breathe California organizations that focus on the Sacramento Region and the San Francisco Bay Area/Silicon Valley/Central Coast.

The Breathe Southern California coalition focuses on localized programs and comes together to implement programs and research that benefit all Californians. We work together to advance primary and secondary lung disease prevention and interventions, as well as advocate for clean air policies and practices in Sacramento.

To learn more about the activities of our affiliates and our statewide presence, visit www.breathecalifornia.org.

OUR leadership

Executive Board

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Andrea Caster, Esq.
Chair
Law Office of Andrea Merrell Caster
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Eileena James-Brown, MBA
Immediate Past Chair
Golden State Insurance (retired)
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Lucy Labruzzo
Secretary
Executive Vice President, Energy Infrastructure
Cordoba Corporation
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Lauren Nevitt
Treasurer
Director, Public Policy
SunRun

Board of Directors

Steven L. Bryson, Esq.
Law Office of Steven L. Bryson
Cynthia Carter
Independent Owner, Juice+
Gavin Chan
Senior Manager, Price Waterhouse Coopers LLC
Angela DePaoli
President & CEO, Bargas Environmental Consulting
Robert L. Duitsman
Attorney-at-Law
Dave Grant
Chief Human Resources Officer, Biola University
Diana Guth
Owner, Home Respiratory Care
Lawrence M. Lebowsky
Law Office of Lawrence Lebowsky
Megan Lorenz Angarita
Managing Attorney – Environmental, Southern California Gas Company
Christopher Musgrave
Business Strategy Manager, Accenture
Bryant “Bo” Okoroji
Steerpoint Capital
Whitney O'Neill
Senior Director of State Government Affairs, Charter Communications
Anita Quiñonez-Gabrielian
Partner, CG Benefits Group
Reza Ronaghi, M.D.
Interventional Pulmonologist, Critical Care Physician, UCLA
Kara C. Sax
CEO, The Sax Agency
Erika Schimmel-Guiles
Director, Design & Project Management, San Diego Gas & Electric
Guy Soo Hoo, M.D.
Director, Medical Intensive Care Unit, Pulmonary & Critical Care, West Los Angeles VA Medical Center
Starr Thompson
Chief People & Administrative Officer, Nonprofits Insurance Alliance
Alexis Wiley
Vice President of Marketing & Communications, AMPLY Power
Zach Woolridge
Director, Private Banking, Banc of California
OUR team

Staff

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Marc Carrel
President & CEO
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Lara Brown
Executive Assistant
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Rich Whittington
Director of Operations
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Rafael Magaña
Senior Director of Development
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Nina Hébert
Director of Communications
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Gilmar Flores
Senior Manager of
Programs & Research
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Tigran Agdain
Manager of Advocacy &
Public Policy
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Rosemarie Ferry
Grants Manager
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Irma Torres
Health Educator
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Jacqueline Vazquez
Health Educator
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Savannah Guevara
Program & Outreach Associate
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Mariah Carrillo
Events & Membership Coordinator
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Silvia Segura
Program & Outreach Associate
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Ivan Fonseca
Public Policy and Communication Coordinator
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Amy Escobar Guevara
Manager of Advocacy &
Public Policy
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Leidi Reyes
Health Educator
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Arnell Ware
Stockroom/Mailroom
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Jennifer Ji
California Climate Action Corps Fellow
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Andrea Prado
California Climate Action Corps Fellow

Let’s Connect

If you have any questions or need help, let us know here! Please do not use this form for media inquiries.

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5858 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 300 Los Angeles CA 90036
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