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Resources and Updates


Happy winter from Southern California Genetic Counselors! Wishing you a safe and joyful holiday season. Please see important updates from the BOD below:

Vote for the 2024 SCGC Board of Directors!

We have an exciting slate of nominees. The final day to approve the slate and/or write in candidate suggestions is Tuesday, December 19th! All full members are able to participate in the election. Slate and voting instructions are both provided below.

New slate:

President elect: Rebecca LeShay Araujo

Education co chairs: Kathryn Reyes and Nydia Santiago Neal

DEI co chairs: Amanda de Leon and Ariadna Martinez

The continuing positions are:

Executive officers

President: Joan Oliver

Past-President: Stacey Wong

Secretary: Hilary Kershberg

Treasurer: Lauren Siems

Directors at large

Marketing: Annina Cooper

Membership: Naomi Wagner

Outreach and Community Engagement: Nicole Choy and Paloma Boeck

Many thanks to the Nominating Committee:

Taylor Berninger

Cathi Franklin

Emily Parkhurst

Naomi Wagner

Michelle Fox, Chair 

Voting instructions:

1. Go to

2. Log-in to your SCGC Account. (If you have not registered yet, please do so! Visit for details.)

3. Go to your SCGC Account page by clicking the arrow on the top right.

4. Scroll down and select the "Go to Vote" button.

5. On the Elections page, you can review the list of all candidates on the current slate, including photos, bios, and CV/resumes.

6. At the bottom, you have the opportunity to write-in any candidate suggestions

7. To approve the slate, select "Accept"

Northern California & Southern California Collaboration

We are excited to announce that the Northern California Coalition of Genetic Counselors and the Southern California Genetic Counselors are considering collaborating for a joint annual education conference in 2025. This conference would replace our two separate annual conferences for that year. To help with our planning, we are requesting feedback from our members and community. Please fill out this survey by mid-January: We would like to get all of our members to respond.

SCGC Education Update

We wrapped up a successful 2023 webinar series, and all attendees who claimed CEUs should be able to access their certificate in their NSGC portal. Thank you for joining us throughout the year, and keep an eye out for more details and registration information for the 2024 series, which will start January 23rd!

Happy Hours!

Thank you to all who attended the San Diego, Orange County, and Los Angeles Happy Hours. We hope to have more social events in 2024. Please reach out to you would like to help organize a SCGC happy hour in your area.

SD Happy Hour (picured, left) on 8/22 had a great turnout, with about 20 attendees total. We are excited to have more local gatherings.

OC Happy Hour (pictured, right) on 9/28 was a success. It was great to get together, meet some new people, and visit with old friends.

LA Happy Hour (pictured, left) was so fun! We met on Friday 11/17 in Culver City and discussed having another casual meet-up in the spring 😀

We are looking forward to more SCGC educational events and social gatherings in 2024! Thank you for being part of SCGC.

SCGC 2024 Elections

Be part of the exciting world of the SCGC Board of Directors! Help lead this

vibrant group of over 300 genetic counselors.

You will be receiving a call for nominations in the next week. Please

nominate a colleague or yourself for one of the SCGC open positions. All full members are eligible. Details to follow.

Graphic with a megaphone and a speech bubble with the word NOMINATIONS! on a yellow background

Executive Officer

President-Elect (3-year term)

Board at Large Directors

Education Chair (2-year term)

DEI Chair (2-year term)

Continuing members of the BOD include:

Joan Oliver - Incoming President

Stacey Wong - Past-President

Hilary Kershberg - Secretary

Lauren Siems - Treasurer

Naomi Wagner - Membership

Annina Cooper - Marketing

Paloma Boeck and Nicole Choy - Community Outreach and Engagement

Thank you,

SCGC 2024 Nominating Committee: Emily Parkhurst, Taylor Berninger, Cathi Franklin, Naomi Wagner (SCGC Membership Chair), and Michelle Fox (Nominating Committee Chair)

Close-up a a group of people raising glasses of beer and other drinks for a toast

San Diego Social Event

Please join us for a SCGC social in San Diego on Tuesday, August 22nd from 6-8pm at Ballast Point Brewing Miramar (9045 Carroll Way). This is a casual get-together for SCGC members. Note: We will meet on the patio outside, and people can opt to purchase their own food/drinks as desired. Stay tuned for upcoming events in Orange County & LA!

Community Outreach Committee

We are currently in the process of planning our New Speaker Orientation ahead of the 2023-2024 school year. SCGC’s Community Outreach committee is collaborating with the Genetic Counseling Prospective Student Network (GCPSN) to engage various community college student groups and high schools throughout SoCal by organizing talks with these groups to introduce them to the field and answer any questions they may have. Our New Speaker Orientation is planned for August 2023.

Graphic of a woman standing in front of a seated audience, giving a presentation

We are asking that previous speakers and newly interested speakers please sign up through our Speaker Interest Form to be contacted for New Speaker Orientation.

If you are interested in volunteering with the Community Outreach Committee in a different capacity (i.e. genetics legislation, etc.), please email Nicole Choy ( or Paloma Boeck (

Webinar Series

The final webinar sessions for the 2023 series will be airing in August and September. See updated details below! As a reminder, SCGC members are able to claim CEUs for any webinars that they attend live if they complete the evaluation within two weeks and pay the fees. Keep an eye out in the coming weeks for more information about paying the fees to claim your CEUs!

Image of a small dog wearing glasses and looking at an iPad

July's session was rescheduled to 8/8/2023 at 12pm PT: Genomics and Precision Medicine Policy: Why Genetic Counselors Should Engage in Advocacy with Jennifer Leib, MS, CGC.

8/23/2023 at 12pm PT: The Importance of Multi-Institutional Collaborative Research Among Genetic Counselors; Lessons from NTHL1-Tumor Syndrome Case Studies with Chelsey Weatherill, MS, CGC.

9/7/2023 at 12pm PT: Harnessing the Power of Cultural Competency for Actionable Change, a DEI workshop with Alberto Morales (Morales Consulting) and Jamila White (blakQuity).

June is widely celebrated by the LGBTQ+ community as it marks the anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising in New York 1969. However, this month is set against a backdrop of numerous anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-trans legislation being pursued across the country, many of which jeopardize the health and safety of this community. While the goal is to eliminate systemic barriers in healthcare, these oppressive laws only increase inequities in this community. Our local communities are no strangers to prejudice, and in some cases, violence, against the LGBTQ+ community. It is undeniable that the socio-political status of our country has created a hostile environment for many of our colleagues and patients.

SCGC stands in solidarity with NSGC and condemns harmful anti-LGBTQ+ legislation as they are oppressive and inequitable. We are committed to supporting our colleagues and patients in the LGBTQ+ community as they deserve equal access to safe, quality, and gender-affirming healthcare. In an effort to continue to learn and better support the LGBTQ+ community, we have compiled a list of local and national organizations, readings, and other educational materials. We hope that you will stand with us in our commitment to the safety and well-being of our friends, family, and patients in the LGBTQ+ community.


Local Organizations:

National/Online Resources:

The Trevor Project | For Young LGBTQ Lives - The Trevor Project provides online counseling services via online chat, phone, or by text

Home - Trans Lifeline - Transgender support organization run by trans people to support the trans community. They provide resources as well as peer-to-peer counseling services and connections to community and resources.

GLAAD - National non-profit focused on LGBTQ+ advocacy and cultural change. They also have an extensive list of outside organizations and resources for the LGBTQ+ community on their LGBTQ Resource List.

UCSF’s Center of Excellence for Transgender Health - provides training, education, research and other educational opportunities to improve and advance the care of transgender and gender diverse individuals.

ACLU Map- Mapping attacks on LGBTQ+ of anti trans legislation rights in U.S. legislators.

Genetic Counseling related publications:



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