2019 Conference Presenters

Welcoming Remarks

Curley L. Bonds, MD

Chief Medical Officer, Clinical Operations
Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health



Dr. Curley L. Bonds is the Chief Medical Officer for the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health (DMH). Prior to his appointment as Chief Medical Officer at DMH, Dr. Bonds served as Medical Director for Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services. He has held key roles in clinical leadership at Charles R. Drew University (CDU) and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He holds faculty appointments as Health Sciences Clinical Professor at UCLA and Professor and Chair of Psychiatry at CDU.
Dr. Bonds earned his BA in Sociology from Emory University and his MD from Indiana University School of Medicine. He completed a residency in adult psychiatry at UCLA’s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior. Dr. Bonds is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and a Fellow of the Academy of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry
Dr. Bonds has won numerous teaching and advocacy awards including The Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) in 2009. Dr. Bonds is active with several professional organizations including the American Association of Community Psychiatrists, the National Medical Association, the Association of LGBTQ Psychiatrists, the Black Psychiatrists of America and the American Psychiatric Association. He is a past president of the Southern California Psychiatric Society. His areas of clinical expertise include healthcare disparities, cross cultural psychiatry, psychosomatic medicine, HIV/AIDS and community based collaborative healthcare.


Morning Plenary Speaker

Anna Lau, PhD
Clinical Professor, Department of Psychology,
University of California, Los Angeles

Stigma – A Blight on Asian American Parental Support for Their Children’s Mental Health


Dr. Anna Lau is a Clinical Psychologist and Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles.  She received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from UCLA in 2000 where she worked as a graduate student in the National Research Center on Asian American Mental Health.  She was fortunate to be mentored by luminaries in the field including Drs. Stanley Sue, Nolan Zane, and David Takeuchi.  Dr. Lau then completed her dissertation with Dr. John Weisz in the area of children’s mental health services.  Her postdoctoral training was at the Child and Adolescent Services Research Center at Rady’s Children’s Hospital in San Diego.  She returned to UCLA as a faculty member in 2003.  Her current research spans across the areas of disparities in children’s mental health services, cultural variation in risk and protective factors for child psychopathology, and community implementation of evidence-based practices for ethnic minority youth and families. Dr. Lau’s work on risk and protective factors for youth in Asian American immigrant families is informing her group’s efforts to implement school-based preventive interventions for adolescents at risk of depression.  Another major collaborative project involves understanding factors that promote the sustained implementation of evidence-based practices for diverse youth and families in community mental health clinics in Los Angeles County.  Dr. Lau’s ongoing research is supported by the National Institute of Mental Health.  Dr. Lau is also involved in the supervision and training of doctoral students in the use of evidence-based practices for youth and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses related to Asian American Mental Health and the Psychology of Diversity. Dr. Lau is dedicated to principles of inclusive excellence in higher education and currently serves as the Vice Chair for Graduate Studies in the Department of Psychology.

Afternoon Plenary Speaker

John Luo, MD
Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, University of California, Irvine

Social Media and Its Impact on Shame, Stigma, and Isolation


Dr. John Luo is the Director of Consultation-Liaison and Emergency Psychiatry at the University of California Irvine Medical Center.  He was formerly the Chief Medical Information Officer for the University of California Riverside School of Medicine. Dr. Luo is an internationally recognized educator and expert on behavioral health informatics. He has presented at numerous conferences, written books and articles on technology use in mental health, and he has been recognized locally and nationally for excellence in teaching. Dr. Luo completed his medical informatics fellowship at UC Davis Department of Psychiatry, where he implemented an electronic sign-out process using the Palm Pilot PDA. He was chief resident and resident at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Psychiatry and received his medical degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. He is board-certified in general psychiatry and clinical informatics.

Workshop Speakers

John Tsuang, MD  
Clinical Professor, Departments of Psychiatry at
Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and the University of California, Los Angeles

Substance Use in Asian American

Dr. John Tsuang
is the director of the Dual Diagnosis Treatment Program at the Harbor/UCLA Medical Center.  He is a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the  UCLA School of Medicine.  Dr. Tsuang received his M.D. and Master Degree from the University of Iowa.  He completed his psychiatry residency training and a two-year substance abuse fellowship at UCSD.  Since then, Dr. Tsuang has committed his life’s work to treatment of dual diagnosis patients.  Dr. Tsuang’s research interests focus on the pharmacological treatment and psychosocial rehabilitation for dual diagnosis patients.   Dr. Tsuang has received numerous awards, including UCLA Department of Psychiatry’s  Teacher of the Year and the NAMI National’s Exemplary Psychiatrist Award as well as the Peggy and Don Richardson Memorial Award.  Outside of his professional life, Dr. Tsuang enjoys taking care of his three daughters and playing golf once in a while.


Marina Niznik, PhD
Licensed Specialist in School Psychology

Understanding and Responding to
Self-injury in the Schools


Dr. Marina Niznik
earned her doctoral degree in School Psychology from the University of Texas at Austin and upon completing her APA-accredited internship a large suburban school district outside of Houston, Texas, remained there for over 15 years, providing direct psychological services in a district of over 100,000 students.  She recently relocated to California where she serves as a consultant to organizations, practitioners, and school districts.  She is currently an Advisory Board member for the JED Foundation Set-To-Go High School program and consults with them extensively in the development of this initiative.  She is a licensed psychologist in the state of California and currently resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.


Vernon Rosario, MD, PhD
Associate Clinical Professor, Department of
Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles

The Spectrum of Gender and Sexuality


Dr. Vernon A. Rosario
is an Associate Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of California, Los Angeles and a child psychiatrist with the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health.  He received his Ph.D. in the History of Science from Harvard University and his M.D. from the Harvard Medical School–M.I.T. Program in Health Sciences and Technology.  He is the author of The Erotic Imagination: French Histories of Perversity (1997) and Homosexuality and Science:  A Guide to the Debates (2002).  His current clinical research is on sexuality and gender identity in transgender and intersex children and adults.