New Board Members at CYW Bring Expertise in Equity, Trauma, and Youth

The Center for Youth Wellness is delighted to welcome three new members of the Board of Directors. In a time of unprecedented national public health crises, they bring unique and deep expertise in mental health, social work, and health disparities to CYW.

Dr. Lisa Fortuna, Dr. Joy Cooper, and Elizabeth Ross, LCSW, will guide the organization through a trauma-informed, post-COVID-19 recovery and join the rest of our board and staff in our unwavering commitment to children, families, and communities affected by trauma.


Dr. Lisa Fortuna is an associate professor of psychiatry at UCSF and Chief of Psychiatry and Vice-chair at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital.

She is a specialist in child and adolescent psychiatry and has participated in several NIH-funded studies, among them studies in immigrant health and integrated health.

Lisa is a graduate of Yale College, New Jersey Medical School, and Hunter College, and trained at St. Vincent’s Hospital-Manhattan and Harvard Medical School.

Last September, Dr. Fortuna served as part of an expert pediatric panel that briefed Congress on the conditions in federal detention centers holding migrant children. This is just one recent example of Dr. Fortuna’s work in service to the families and children most impacted by childhood trauma.


Dr. Joy Cooper  is an OB-GYN affiliated with Highland Hospital in Oakland.

She focuses on fibroids, adolescent medicine, and health disparities. She is also co-founder of Culture Care, which focuses on providing culturally responsive and appropriate care to Black women through telehealth. She has a special interest in expectant teens.

Joy is a graduate of Harvard University, University College London, and Howard Medical School, and trained at U Penn Health System.

For Dr. Cooper, CYW sits at the intersection of her passion for the safety and health of youth, and she is looking forward to serving in underserved communities in addition to her one-on-one work with patients.

She shares: “I am excited that CYW brings to the forefront childhood traumas. I am passionate about helping find solutions for healing ACEs, children’s trauma, and preventing the cycle of ACEs in different communities.”


Elizabeth Ross, LCSW (Liz) is a social worker with over 18 years of clinical, program design, and leadership experience in social service and non-profits.

Most recently, Liz was the founding director of The Karsh Family Social Service Center in the Koreatown community of Los Angeles. She taught in MSW programs at Fordham University and NYU and has supervised MSW students in New York and LA.

Her non-profit involvement focuses on maternal mental health, food scarcity, and religion. Before being formally introduced to the organization, Liz was already an advocate for CYW’s work and helped inspire philanthropic support.

Her passion for this issue and energy are unparalleled, summed up best by her quote: “The valuable insight of programs at CYW are essential in our efforts to create healthier more stable families and communities, and I am honored to support this work as a board member, taking years of frontline work, advocacy and program design and offering my skills in a different way.”


In the age of COVID-19, it is the calling of Center for Youth Wellness to ensure that families and children are served equitably and that basic needs are met while using a trauma informed approach. This new class of board members deeply illustrates CYW’s commitment to equity, care, and stability for families and communities, through crises and recovery to stability and thriving. Health begins with hope.  

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