Our twenty RISE Fellows for the 2016 program year represent some of San Diego’s best and brightest community leaders, activists, practitioners, and agents of social change. They have demonstrated their experience in and commitment to a variety of issues affecting urban communities across San Diego, including education, urban planning and redevelopment, food justice, and gang violence prevention.
YESSICA DIAZ-ROMAN, DrPH
Under her leadership, Yessica helped implement a multi-level family health fair that offered free health screenings to over 700 medically underserved families in San Diego. Currently, Yessica is the Health Chair for the committee whose purpose is to integrate health across MANA’s programs and to promote health and well-being in the community. She serves on the board of directors for Columbia University’s Alumni Association of San Diego and is an active member of the Association of Women in Science in San Diego. Her research interests focus on type-2 diabetes, chronic disease management, and reducing oral health disparities.
Yessica received her doctorate is sociomedical sciences from Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and a joint master’s in public health and social work from the University of Michigan.
and ethnic studies and received her multiple subject teaching credential and master’s in elementary education from Loyola Marymount University. She is currently pursuing an administrative services credential through the University of San Diego School of Leadership and Education Sciences (SOLES).
Natasha is a native of San Diego and attended the San Diego School of Creative and Performing Arts. She is a registered financial assistant with Commonwealth Financial Network and holds both a Series 7 and 63 license. She has worked in the financial services industry for ten years servicing a client base of roughly $250 million. Natasha is also a contemporary ballet dancer and choreographer who has been dancing professionally for fifteen years and choreographing for ten. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from San Diego State University and just completed her final requirement to obtain her master’s degree in leadership from the University of San Diego.