"Sometimes the most ordinary things could be made extraordinary, simply by doing them with the right people."

- Elizabeth Green

Staff - Alison

Alison Chopel, MPH, DrPH


Alison Chopel has been working with youth for over a decade, both in the US and abroad. In addition to her passion for adolescent health, she brings skills and knowledge in participatory research, social epidemiology, and youth leadership development to the Collaborative. Alison’s passion for enabling young people to fulfill their potential stems from her own experiences with abuse, homelessness, and pregnancy in her youth. Thanks to a caring and supportive mentor, she overcame her earlier challenges, pursued a career in youth development, and is now working towards providing all youth with the opportunity to thrive.

Email: Alison.Chopel@phi.org | Phone: (510) 500-5993

Staff - Chelsey

Chelsey Little Fitzgerald


Chelsey Little comes to the California Adolescent Health Collaborative with over five years of contract and budget management experience. She is passionate about systems creation and implementation. She enjoys facilitating and overseeing complicated procedures/processes and looks forward to supporting CAHC in this capacity. Chelsey grew up in Austin, Texas as one of five children in a low income household with one primary breadwinner. The first in her family to go to college, she graduated from Stanford University with Distinction and a BA in English Literature. Having benefited from the generosity and diligent attention of caring adults during her own adolescence, Chelsey is well aware of the village it can take to bring resources, opportunities, and helpful information to otherwise underserved or unsupported youth. For this reason, she is excited to be able to work behind the scenes to support CAHC projects and goals.

Email: Chelsey.Ftizgerald@phi.org | Phone: (510) 788-7557

Robert Lee, MAEd


Robert Lee has been working as a program manager, education specialist, and curriculum developer in adolescent health for two years. Robert has years of experience in developing curriculum and educating urban youth in both math and the physical sciences. He is passionate about empowering youth through mentoring, youth leadership development, teen health awareness, and emphasizing college-bound education. In addition, he has experience working as a community health volunteer for the Berkeley Free Clinic for over a decade. Robert is a Sacramento native, but loves the Bay Area. When he is not busy working hard, he is running obstacle-course races (like Tough Mudder and the Spartan Races), hiking around the Yosemite Valley, or disc golfing around the Bay Area.

Email: Robert.Lee@phi.org | Phone: (415) 625-3910

Elva Castellaños


Elva Castellaños was born in Mexico and raised in San Francisco, California. She started her tenure at the Public Health Institute over 6 years ago and has worked in a variety of roles, including international public health programs.  She strives to bring empathy, respect, humility and of course, humor to her work place.  One of Elva’s dreams is to see her two kids graduate from University.

Email: ECastellanos@phi.org | Phone: (510) 285-5693


German Zavaza Jimenez


German Zavalza joins CAHC with a background in higher education. German moved to the Central Valley in early adolescence, and his lived experience compliments his passion for ensuring that youth have the tools that they need to be successful. He is a huge advocate for education and strongly believes that the road to an improved lifestyle is paved by it. German enjoys living a healthy lifestyle and spending time with his family.

Email: German.Zavalza@phi.org | Phone: (209) 542-4831


Lindsey Salcido


Lindsey Salcido comes to us with her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and a passion for Public Health and well-being. She is a native to the Central Valley and provides a local understanding of the social and health obstacles of the Central Valley. She loves spending time with her family and crafting away for various holidays. Her recent passion is renovating her home. 

Email: Lindsey.Salcido@phi.org | Phone: (209) 761-9295

Namiye Peoples


Namiye Peoples is an outgoing, high school senior, lead Chef at Youth Radio and co-researcher on the M.E.T.A. Oakland project.  She became interested in tobacco research because she noticed that smoking among her family members was influenced by tobacco advertising that targeted African-Americans. Tobacco control policy became an important advocacy issue to her because she believes that decreasing access to tobacco can reduce the opportunity for youth to form the habit. Namiye has been working at youth Radio for 3 years and gained skills in graphic design, studio engineering, journalism, and now mental health. Her future goals are to graduate from high school, attend UCLA to major in a health science and study abroad in Dubai.

Bre'Jaynae Joiner


Bre’Jaynae Joiner returns to the California Adolescent Health Collaborative with her A.A in Social and Behavioral Science. She first partnered with CAHC/PHI in March 2016 alongside Brighter Beginnings, working on the Breastfeeding Among Young Mother's Research Project. This project is a branch of the California Breast Cancer Research Program (CBCRP) and the ultimate aim of this research is to prevent breast cancer, especially in women of color, by finding ways to inform young mothers of the benefits breastfeeding has not only for their babies, but for themselves. This research is important to Bre’Jaynae because she herself breastfed her daughter from birth on. Because she knew the benefits breastfeeding would have not only for her daughter, but for herself as well, Bre'Jaynae now has a brilliant, healthy two-year-old little girl. Working on this research project has inspired Bre’Jaynae to continue her higher education at CSU East Bay, where she will be attending starting in Fall of 2017 to work towards her B.A in Sociology.