Meet Us

It takes a great team to make a great organization! Here are some of the awesome people that help CA Hands & Voices run.

Area Representatives

Region 1 - Humboldt, Del Norte, Lake, Mendocino, Butte, Glenn, Shasta, Siskiyou, Tehama, Trinity, Lassen, Modoc Plumas, Sierra

Area Rep– Vacant

Region 2 - Colusa, Sutter, Yuba, Alpine, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Yolo, Amador, Calaveras, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Tuolumne

Cindy Sandoval, Co- Area Representative for Region 2 - ( - Cindy lives in Northern California with her husband and her two sons Jordan and Chrystian. Jordan is now a young adult. When he was identified at the age of 14 months, she hesitated to reach out for parent mentor supports, but luckily with family & friends support, she was able to move forward and immerse herself in all resources related to her son. Cindy understands the importance of family-to-family support and alongside Jordan, they enjoy sharing their experiences with families. She is tri-lingual and has learned that in this process there is no one way fits all. Often, you will find both Jordan and Cindy sharing their story with families at various outreach events. Ella habla español.

Johanna Wonderly, Co- Area Representative for Region 2 - ( - Johanna resides in Placer County. She is the mommy to two fabulous Hard of Hearing daughters. Cassie (3) and Cara (1) both have Mild-Moderate Hearing Levels. Despite having a background in Deaf studies, Johanna was not prepared for the journey of finding and securing services. It was a world of difference when Cara was identified and everything went so much smoother just by being familiar with the process. This drives Johanna’s motivation to connect with other families. She feels parents should not have to be trail blazers every time a DHH child is identified, the path is so much more enjoyable with friends who’ve been there by your side.

Region 3 - Napa, Solano, Sonoma, Marin, Contra Costa, San Francisco, Alemeda, San Mateo

Apryl Chauhan, President and Co- Area Representative for Region 3 - (see Executive Board section for bio)

Brandi Castro, Co- Area Representative for Region 3 and Advisor - (see Advisory Board for bio)

Region 4 - Santa Clara, San Benito, Santa Cruz, Monterey

Chelsea Hull, Area Representative for Region 4 - ( - Chelsea Hull lives in Monterey, CA with her active duty (Navy) husband and two hearing children. Chelsea’s mother was Hard of Hearing. Chelsea has been in the field of Deaf Education for almost 20 years. She enjoys helping families connect with other families and advocating for what is best for each family to help their child develop to their fullest potential. Chelsea’s worked as a birth-three specialist, preschool teacher, high school teacher and as and ASL college level interpreter. She has been a member of H&V for about ten years. She loves quiet walks on the beach and Thai beach.

Region 5 - Ventura, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo

Tina Self, Area Representative for Region 5 - ( - Tina and her husband Zack live in San Luis Obispo with their two kids Kylie (10) has moderate to severe hearing loss and wears hearing aids. Barrett (7) is hearing. Tina grow up in Santa Barbara/ Goleta and they have family there still. Kylie was 7 when we found out she had a hearing loss ad needed hearing aids, she goes to our local public school. I just want to be here to help other families like us of this journey and let them know you are not alone.

Region 6 - Madera, Mariposa, Merced, Fresno, King, Inyo, Mono, Tulare, Kern

Area Rep– Vacant

Region 7 - Los Angeles, Orange

Maribel Pineda, Co Area Representative for Region 7 - ( - Maribel Pineda lives in Alhambra with her husband Edgar and two younger children. Elyssabeth 9yrs old and Edward 6yrs old born deaf. She works full time managing a Dental office for over 18yrs. Edward was diagnosed with having severe to profound hearing loss secondary to auditory neuropathy, auditory dys-synchrony disorder in the left ear and a severe to profound sensorineural hearing loss in the right ear with AN/ AD component. Edward wears an ABI Auditory brainstem implant on his right side. Family uses ASL for communication with Edward. Maribel is also a Board Member for Deaf Latinos y Familias organization and a parent volunteer for CSUN Deaf Education and Families Project. Maribel hosted many events with deaf and hard of hearing children in her area, art museums, story time at library and family park events. She and her husband enjoy hosting events for have a place where DHH children, siblings and parents can feel at home and built relationships that can last a lifetime. Ella habla español.

Yiesell Rayon, Co- Area Representative for Region 7 - ( - Yiesell resides in Chino, California with her husband Marcus and three young boys. Their middle son, Markie was identified at birth with bilateral sensorineural hearing loss. Markie uses binaural hearing aids and attends California School for the Deaf, Riverside (CSDR). After acquiring her B.A., Yiesell decided to focus on raising a child with hearing loss. She quickly discovered her passion for offering support and resources to other parents who have Deaf or Hard of Hearing children. She applies both her professional and personal experience as an advocate to empower parents to advocate for their own children. Yiesell is also the Director of Latino Support for Hands & Voices Headquarters. She sits on the Early Hearing Detection & Intervention (EHDI) planning committee as well as the National Center for Hearing Assessment and Management (NCHAM) Parent Advisory Committee. Yiesell is honored to represent parents of children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing to ensure parent’s needs are being met. Yiesell is passionate about providing support to parents, but also the professionals who serve them. Ella habla español.

Region 8 - San Diego, Imperial

Rosabel Agbayani, BA, BS, MPH, Area Representative for 8 - ( - She has been involved with California Hands & Voices since 2013 volunteering her time helping with fundraising and community development. She has worked with providers and educators seeking to collaborate and develop effective parent-professional partnerships. Rosabel is the mother of a hard of hearing child with bi-lateral severe to profound conductive hearing loss. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Human Development Specializing in Health Services from California State University San Marcos in 2002. Her struggles for understanding her son's circumstances and making decisions regarding his treatments and education inspired her to return to school and earned a Bachelor of Science in Communicative Disorders and Deaf Education from Utah State University in 2013. She recently completed her Master's in Public Health and works at Rady Children’s Hospital as a Clinical Research Coordinator specializing in Pediatric Rheumatology. She is happily married to her high school sweetheart and has three children. She loves traveling, mountain biking, and spending time with family.

Region 9 - Riverside, San Bernardino

Anel Herrera, Area Representative for 9 - ( - Anel Herrera and her family live Chino, California, San Bernardino County. She is the mother of five children and her middle child Alysa was born with Treacher Collins syndrome (TCS), bilateral microtia atresia. Her daughter had reconstruction surgeries at 6 years old. Alysa has moderate to severe hearing loss wore a BAHA on the soft band from the age of 4 months until her abutment surgery in 2016. Having a daughter born with this syndrome is very humbling. Anel felt lost when her daughter was born because there were not many resources easily accessible. California Hands & Voices was one of the organizations that provided Anel with more information related to deaf and hard-of-hearing community and embraced her family and made them feel a part of the family. Anel's ultimate goal is to give back and pay it forward to other families and help them get the information that is needed for their child to succeed in this world. Ella habla español.

Executive Board

Apryl Chauhan: President (on hiatus until 10/2019)

Apryl Chauhan is the President of California Hands & Voices and she lives in the East Bay. She is the wife and mother of three children. When her oldest daughter was identified as deaf at the age of two Apryl began the journey so many other parents take, of how to raise a successful and happy deaf child. She found the greatest resource of support and information from other parents and has spent the past fifteen years “paying it forward” by working as a parent mentor and parent leader through out the state.

Cora Shahid: Vice President, Membership

( Cora and her husband live in San Diego and are proud parents an adult daughter and two sons. Both boys were born with a moderately severe hearing level. From the very beginning she believed in early parent to parent support, DHH role models (adults and peers) and the importance of nurturing language development. Cora is a founding board member of CA H&V and currently oversees the chapter’s social media presence as well as managing membership, the database and our quarterly article submission for The Hands & Voices Communicator. She is on the planning committee for the CA H&V Family Camp in Southern California. Cora worked as a parent mentor with Parent Links for 6 years and has experience working with families of nearly identified DHH children. Her goal is for CA H&V to flourish so that non-judgmental support can positively impact every family in California raising Deaf and Hard of Hearing children!

Kat Lowrance: Treasure

( Kat and her husband Stan live in Redding, California, and they have 3 grown children and 2 grandchildren. Dylan is their youngest child and is Deaf. Kat is currently the Executive Director at Rowell Family Empowerment of No. California, a non-profit, IDEA funded Parent Center that provides support, information and training to families who have children with diverse abilities. Kat is also the Parent Links Coordinator for 47 CA counties and a Mentor for families who have Deaf or Hard of Hearing babies in far Northern California. There are 10 Parent Links Mentors in several communities throughout California reaching out to parents who have a Deaf/Hard of Hearing baby and help them navigate their way along the journey! Kat also is the Northern California DHH Family Camp Director for California Hands & Voices. Kat’s journey into the Deaf world started many years ago. I met my best friend, Toni, when I was in Middle School. Her first born son, Jamin, was born Deaf. She supported her navigation through some of those very early systems. When Jamin was 12 she had her youngest son, Dylan. At age 8 months, Dylan got spinal meningitis and as a result could not hear. Toni became her support person! I had learned SEE sign because the medical field told me that he would need this to learn to read and write. Well, as life went on I learned so much more! I continue to learn more everyday! I appreciate all the friends, the Deaf people and the professionals who helped me find my way!

Nancy Sager: Secretary

( Nancy Grosz Sager lives in Yuba City and is the secretary for California Hands & Voices. She was a teacher of the Deaf for the Sutter County Office of Education for 21 years, and she was the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Programs Consultant at the California Department of Education for 18 years. She retired last August, but she still works part time as a retired annuitant. By far, the best part of her job has been the opportunity to work with and support parents through the Parent Links program and the Hands & Voices organization. She is a mom of two great (now grown-up) girls, Jeannette and Michelle. They both live in Oregon. Nancy’s great partner in crime is Ken, and she has a wonderful service dog named Whisper.

Tony Ronco: Past President

( Tony is an involved dad, husband, and engineer. With his wife Jenny, they have two children: Their hearing son Austin and their Deaf daughter Dakota. Tony has a particularly strong passion for all children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing achieving Kindergarten Readiness and for those children to have the benefit of full family inclusion.

Advisory Board

Mallorie Evans ( - Mallorie Evans is an Advisory Board member. She lives in Los Angeles County with her husband Mike, who is Deaf, and her 3 KODA children (Kyla, 17, and twins Mike Jr and Mikela, 13). Mallorie is an Educational Audiologist with Los Angeles Unified School District, as well as a part-time lecturer at CSUN in the Deaf Education Teacher Preparation (credential) program. She is trained in ASL/English bilingual methodology, and has a passion for working with parents of Deaf children.

Brandi Castro ( - Brandi and her husband live in the East Bay in Northern California. Brandi is a S.O.D.A. (Sibling of the Deaf) and a teacher of the deaf working with infants and families. She earned her degrees in Deaf Education at CSUN. While there she became heavily invested in the deaf community in various capacities. From being a sister, a nanny to both deaf and hearing children, a tutor, a TOD (teacher of the deaf) serving kiddos birth all the way to adulthood, a friend, and an advocate, Brandi brings a unique perspective and insight from her experience to California Hands & Voices. Some of those experiences include volunteering/working in camps, community programs supporting families with deaf and hearing children, international service programs, kids and adults who are deaf plus and many more. Brandi believes without a doubt parents are the key to achievement for DHH children. Her experience has also taught her COLLABORATION between parents and professionals is what makes a difference in the successfulness of a child. Teamwork makes the dream work!

Syndi Lyon, Co-Director of the CA H&V Family Camp, Southern California - Syndi and her husband Rod live and work in San Diego County where they are raising their three children, Zander (Hearing), Carleigh (Deaf), and Siena (Hearing). In addition to being a full-time teacher, Syndi is the co-director of our Southern CA Hands and Voices Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Family Camp. She is also the Chair for the Hearing Loss Association of America's San Diego Walk4Hearing. Syndi is passionate about volunteering to advocate for her daughter and all those with a hearing loss.

Kristal Molina, Co-Director for the CA H&V Family Camp, Southern California - Kristal and her husband live in San Diego. They are proud parents of Lily who is young Deaf adult and Josiah who is hearing. Lily was identified with a profound hearing loss after a battle with Spinal Meningitis at 10 months of age and later received cochlear implants. Lily uses American Sign Language and English.