Keynote: Start from the Bottom, to build and manage healthcare for the incarcerated

Kathleen Allison, Agency Secretary, Retired, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation 

Kathleen Allison retired as Secretary for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) after serving from  October 1, 2020-December 28, 2022.

In over 35 years at CDCR, she held several leadership roles, including Undersecretary of Operations from 2019 until retiring in December 2019. Before that, she was Director of the Division of Adult Institutions (DAI) from 2016 to 2018, Deputy Director of Facility Support from 2012 to 2016, and Associate Director for the Female Offender Programs and Services from 2011 to 2012. Ms. Allison also served in several positions at the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility in Corcoran from 2002 to 2011, including Warden, Chief Deputy Administrator, Correctional Administrator, and Correctional Health Services Administrator II.  Ms. Allison was a Community Resource Manager at Avenal State Prison from 1997 to 2002.  From 1993 to 1997, she served as a Senior Medical Technician at North Kern and Avenal State Prison.  Ms. Allison began her career as a Medical Technical Assistant at Avenal State Prison in 1987. She is a licensed Registered Nurse. 

Ms. Allison has experienced nearly all aspects of corrections in her tenure at CDCR, from health care and custody operations to fiscal administration, rehabilitative programs, mental health services, and community relationships.  As Undersecretary, Ms. Allison held a critical role in the responsibility for the response of CDCR to the COVID-19 pandemic in some of the state’s 35 prisons. 

Additionally, Ms. Allison has overseen the evolution of the Department over the past three decades, including implementing various criminal justice reforms, such as the voter-approved initiatives Proposition 36, Proposition 47, and Proposition 57. She has also successfully led the development of policies and programs that focus on rehabilitation, restorative justice, and successful reentry, which have made prisons safer for staff and incarcerated people, and has strengthened partnerships with both governmental agencies and community organizations to create a system focused on public safety, personal accountability, and positive change. 

Ms. Allison is known to her colleagues as a dedicated, compassionate, and knowledgeable leader. She is married, has four children, and has a Tibetan terrier.

Facing the need for ethical principles and sensitivity for diverse populations

Honorable Erica R. Yew, Judge of the California Superior Court for the County of Santa Clara County 

Governor Gray Davis appointed Yew, a San Jose native, to the Santa Clara County Superior Court on October 2, 2001.  Yew is the first Asian-American female to serve on this bench. 

Yew was unanimously appointed by the California Supreme Court to the Committee on Judicial Ethics Opinions (CJEO) on May 1, 2019.  She served on the California Commission on Judicial Performance (CJP) from December 2010 to April 2019 and chaired the CJP for two and a half years.  From 2009 to 2012, Yew was a member of the California Judicial Council, which is the policymaking body of the California Courts.  She has returned to the Judicial Council as a member in her role as President of CJA.  Yew was appointed in July 2014 to the Judicial Council’s Advisory Committee on Providing Access and Fairness (PAF) and served until September 2021.  She has served on the California Access to Justice Commission (CATJC) since July 2014 and she co-founded and co-chairs the CATJC’s Racial Justice and Intersectionality Committee.  Currently, Yew is a member of the board for the National Center for State Courts and chairs the Programs Committee.  She is also the President of the California Judges Association (CJA).  She co-chaired and co-founded the CJA Mindfulness and Wellness Committee and helped to create a website that is open for bench officers nationally to connect them with information to support professional wellness. She is also a co-chair of the California Judicial Mentor Program, a statewide judicial mentoring program jointly established by Governor Newsom, Judicial Appointment Secretary Luis C├ęspedes and the judiciary. 

In addition to the law, community service is important to Yew.  The following representative sample of Yew’s awards demonstrates her long-standing commitment to service.  In 1990, the Santa Clara County Bar Association (SCCBA) named her Pro Bono Attorney of the Year.  The California State Bar gave Yew the Wiley W. Manuel Award for Pro Bono Legal Services in 1991.  In 1995, the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors and the Human Relations Commission conferred the Award of Special Merit upon Yew for her service to the community.  Also in 1995, the Honorable Zoe Lofgren entered Yew’s name in the United States Congressional Record in recognition of her volunteer efforts.  In January 2001, Yew won an award from the Avanti Foundation for her volunteerism.  In March 2002, the Asian Law Alliance gave Yew its Distinguished Recognition Award.  In November 2002, Yew received a Trailblazer Award from the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA). In September 2003, Yew was recognized by the SCCBA Women Lawyers Committee.  In January 2005, Yew received the SCCBA Justice Byrl R. Salsman Award for her long-term contributions to the legal profession.  On March 14, 2005, Yew was named Woman of the Year for District 24 by California Assembly member Rebecca Cohen.  In March 2006, Yew received the Juliette Gordon Low Award from the Girl Scouts of Santa Clara County.  In May 2008, AACI gave a Community Star Award to Yew.  In March 2009, the San Jose Business Journal named Yew a 2009 Women of Influence in the Silicon Valley.  In July 2009, Yew received an Opening Doors to Justice Award from the Public Interest Clearinghouse, now known as One Justice.  In November 2010, Yew received an Access to Justice Award from the Pro Bono Project for her work in the area of domestic violence.  In November 2011, Yew received the Diversity Award from the SCCBA.  In 2014, Yew received the prestigious John W. Gardner Leadership Award from the American Leadership Forum – Silicon Valley (ALF).  The award is conferred upon community leaders who demonstrate ALF’s core values of diversity, inclusiveness, civility, engagement and respect.  ALF is a national organization dedicated to training leaders to be better collaborative leaders for the common good.  In 2015, Yew was named Trial Judge of the Year by the Santa Clara County Trial Lawyers Association.  Also in 2015, Yew was honored by the Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus for her contributions and impact in the field of Law.  In 2016, Yew was named Outstanding Jurist of the Year by the Santa Clara County Bar Association and in 2017 Yew received the Legal Impact Award from Asian Law Alliance.  Also in 2017, Yew received the Judicial Council’s Distinguished Service Award, one of the highest awards conferred in the California judicial branch.  Yew is the 2023 recipient of the California Women Lawyers Rose Bird Memorial Award.  

Yew has taught on a number of topics that include judicial ethics, working with self represented litigants, elimination of bias, language access, and collaborative courts.  She has instructed through the California Judicial Education and Research program (CJER), Children and Family Futures, the Rutter Group, California Judges Association, the National Center for State Courts/Center for Judicial Ethics, the National Judicial College, and the National Association of Drug Court Professionals among other entities.  She has served on CJER’s Curriculum Working Group for QE6, 7, and 8.  Her scripts were adopted and presented in QE7 and QE8 programs.

She is a Past President of the California Asian-American Judges Association (CAPAJA) and Past President of the NAPABA Judicial Council, which is the national association of Asian-American judicial officers.   Yew has also served on the national board for ReSurge (formerly known as Interplast) which provides reconstructive cleft palette and burn surgeries globally, the Santa Clara County (SCC) Law Library Board, and the SCC Child Abuse Council.  In 2008 and 2009, Yew chaired the Good Samaritan Hospital Board and served on the hospital’s Bioethics Committee.  She is an American Leadership Forum (ALF) senior fellow, Class XV.  Currently, she co-facilitates ALF’s AAPI Caucus.  In 2008, 2009 and 2011, Yew chaired her court’s Community Outreach Committee, instituting both Girl Scouts Day at Court and Pre-Law Diversity Day; the latter is a program for which the California State Bar Association has prepared a tool kit to enable other courts to offer similar events. In 2006, Yew served on the California State Bar and Santa Clara County Bar Association Pipeline Task Forces on Diversity, helping to plan the state’s first judicial conference on the issue of diversity on the bench.  She has also served on the Advisory Committee for the State Bar’s Leadership Academy, a project of the bar’s Office of Legal Services, Access and Fairness.  Also in 2006, Yew established Santa Clara County’s first county-wide collaborative workshop program serving families dealing with domestic violence.  This collaborative, known as Domestic Violence Information and Resources (DVIR), provided resource fairs and education for victims, perpetrators, and their children throughout the county in multiple languages and in multiple locations including homeless shelters, the jail, schools, and community centers for ten years. 

As an attorney, Yew served as a District Three Representative on the California State Bar Board of Governors, now known as the California State Bar Board of Trustees.  Yew is past President of the Asian Pacific Bar Association of the Silicon Valley.  She has also served on the boards of the Pro Bono Project of Silicon Valley, the Asian Law Alliance, the Legal Aid Society, the Silicon Valley Campaign for Legal Services, and the SCCBA Board of Trustees.  For that bar association, she co-chaired the Judiciary Committee and chaired the Minority Access Committee.  In addition, Yew served on then Attorney General Lockyer’s Blue Ribbon Commission on SWAT Policies and Practices.  She has also been on the board of Child Advocates of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties and served on the county Advisory Commission for the Children’s Shelter.  She was a Child Advocate for ten years and volunteered through the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office to represent children in the dependency system.  One of Yew’s advocate children is now a judge in Monroe County, New York, and is the first African American female jurist to serve on her court having been elected in November 2018.  In 1994, Yew founded a monthly program for toddlers at the Agnews Family Living Center, a homeless shelter.  As a volunteer and while practicing law, Yew coordinated this program for four years.

Yew received her undergraduate degree with honors from University of California at Berkeley in 1982 and her law degree from Hastings College of the Law in 1985. 

WOMEN AND Health Equity 

Annette Lambert, Deputy Director, Quality Management, California Correctional Health Care Services

Annette Lambert has worked in correctional health care for twenty years.  She has served as a senior leader within the CCHCS Quality Management Program from its inception in 2010 and as Deputy Director of Quality Management and Informatics Services at California Correctional Health Care Services (CCHCS) for the past seven years.  She oversees all of the components of the quality management patient safety systems for the California prison system, which includes the health care performance evaluation system and health care incident reporting process, quality committees, the root cause analysis and Lean Six Sigma programs, and coordination of large-scale improvement projects. She is responsible for providing program direction and professional practice support to more than 280 quality management professionals at different organizational levels statewide.

Navinderjit Singh, MD, Quality Management and Patient Safety, California Correctional Healthcare Services

Navinderjit Singh is board certified in Internal Medicine. She was Chief of Hospital Medicine for VA Northern California Healthcare System and clinical faculty at UC Davis Healthcare System, before joining CCHCS’s Quality Management team. She is a current Master Black Belt candidate in Lean Six Sigma and has a passion for harnessing data to improve healthcare and health outcomes in underserved communities.

Isaac  P. Loera,  Chief Quality Officer, 

California Correctional Health Care Services, California Institution for Women

Isaac Loera is the Chief Quality Officer for Correctional Health Care Services (CCHCS) at the California Institution for Women (CIW) in Southern California.

Isaac began his career in health care in 2007 where he has moved through various analytical and leadership roles in CCHCS until he was appointed as Chief Quality Officer in 2017.  In 2020, the CEO appointed Isaac as Patient Safety Chairman, and in 2023 Isaac was appointed to Chief Equity Officer at CIW where he has Championed various initiatives including cancer screenings for high-risk incarcerated females.  Isaac firmly believes in that if you desire great change, you need to run great projects.

Isaac holds a master’s degree in business administration, is a Certified Professional in Health Care Quality, granted by the National Association for Health Care Quality, and he is a 2023 Lean Six Sigma Black-Belt candidate.

Bringing High Quality Healthcare to the Incarcerated – Lessons from a Nurse Educator

Lori Roscoe DNP, PhD, APRN, CCHP-RN, Correctional Health Care Consultant, Correctional.Nurse.Net LLC

Lori Roscoe, DNP, Ph.D., APRN, CCHP-RN, is a certified Autonomous Advanced

Practice Registered Nurse (nurse practitioner) and a Certified Correctional Health

Professional - Registered Nurse with over 30 years of nursing experience and 28 years of correctional healthcare experience. She is well-versed in both the operational and clinical aspects of healthcare provision inside the walls of correctional facilities. Dr. Roscoe has worked in both jails and prisons. She is a frequent presenter at the NCCHC conferences and presents a monthly Open Forum for American Correctional Nurses Association members. She is also the Treasurer of that organization. Dr. Roscoe is honored to have worked on the American Nurses Association’s expert workgroup that edited the second and third editions of Correctional Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice. Her volunteer efforts include being the Accredited Provider Program Director for the National Commission on Correctional Health Care. She recently achieved continued accreditation as a provider of continuing education by the ANCC for NCCHC. She is an NCCHC Multi-Disciplinary Education Committee member and Co-Chairperson of the Nurse Advisory Council. Dr. Roscoe has volunteered her time clinically at the Community Health Center’s Free Clinic for individuals without health insurance, where she was a preceptor to medical students, physician assistant students, and nurse practitioner students. She was recently awarded the Margaret Collatt Service Award for 2023 by the Academy of Correctional Health Professionals. 

Dr. Roscoe provides accredited continuing education classes that are specialized for the correctional nurse at The Correctional Nurse Educator, and she maintains CorrectionalNurse.net, an award-winning blog exploring clinical and professional practice issues specific to correctional nursing. She also maintains Nursing Behind the Wall, a website offering free clinical scenarios for correctional nurses and nurse practitioners to practice clinical judgment. Dr. Roscoe is a subject matter expert in Correctional Nursing and the provision of Correctional Health Care and has worked on numerous legal cases involving correctional nursing, correctional providers, and correctional healthcare.

Meeting Standards for Juvenile and Adult Correctional Health Services

Wendy Habert, MBA, BS, CCHP, PHR Director of Accreditation, National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC) 

Wendy Habert is the Director of Accreditation for the National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC). She has been working in law enforcement and corrections for over 27 years, having served in many capacities, including as a sworn Deputy Sheriff, Health Services Administrator, (command staff) Director of Compliance, and Regional Director of Operations prior to starting her career with NCCHC in 2021. She achieved her certified correctional health care professional (CCHP) designation in 2014 and became an NCCHC surveyor in 2015, now overseeing the NCCHC surveyor cadre in her current role as staff with NCCHC. She has a bachelor’s degree in Criminology with minors in Psychology and Accounting from the University of MN, Duluth, and a master’s degree in Business Administration with a focus in management, from the University of CO, Colorado Springs. Wendy’s diverse background provides her with unique experiences and a well-rounded perspective, of which she is passionate in helping correctional facilities and people in various roles within custody and health care staff understand the NCCHC accreditation standards and how to achieve optimum success with their health care delivery systems. Residing in Colorado Springs, CO, Wendy enjoys watching her two teenage kids play soccer (one in high school and one playing at the collegiate level in northern Minnesota), riding her Harley Davidson Road King motorcycle through the beautiful roads of Colorado, and spending time with her friends and family in her spare time.

All Bodies Are Good Bodies: Advancing Health Equity through Weight Inclusive Care

Shelley Aggarwal, MD, MS, Medical Director, Santa Clara County Juvenile Facilities Medical Clinics

Shelley Aggarwal, is a board-certified Pediatrician and Adolescent Medicine Sub-Specialist. She is passionate about health-promoting and culturally-aligned medical care, with a focus on bridging care gaps for underserved and marginalized communities, specifically youth populations. Dr. Aggarwal is teaching faculty with Stanford University. She has published articles, books, and chapters on the healthcare needs of adolescents and young adults. Currently, she is the Medical Director for Juvenile Custody Health Services in Santa Clara County. 

I'M Possible: Wellness from the Inside-Out

Barbara Barney Knox M.B.A., M.A., B.S.N., R.N., Deputy Director Nursing, Statewide Chief Nurse Executive for California Correctional Health Care Services

Barbara Barney-Knox is proudly serving as the current President WACHSA Board. Barbara is responsible for the oversight and clinical practice of over 7000 nursing personnel working in the 34 prisons in California. Barbara has been with CCHCS for 8 years and has been instrumental in developing and implementing Shared Governance, a nursing professional practice model that empowers nurses to have a voice in decisions that impact nursing and for building the first LVN to RN Apprenticeship program in the state.

In her career Barbara has been selected to present at several professional conferences including the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) National Magnet Conference, and most notably a presentation to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. Barbara has also testified at a Congressional Hearing on the value of Apprenticeship to underserved communities. In her spare time Barbara is a motorcycle enthusiast and has rode across country on her Harley Davidson on four occasions. Prior to working for CCHCS Barbara spent 8 years as a leader at Kaiser Permanente and 17 years at University of California Davis Health System.


Keynote: Joining the Safety Net, Overcoming Barriers to Connected Care

Dan Mistak, JD, Director of Healthcare Initiatives for Justice-Involved Populations, Community Oriented Correctional Health Services 

Dan Mistak, MA, MS, JD, is the Acting President and Director of Health Care Initiatives for Justice-Involved Populations at Community Oriented Correctional Health Services. At COCHS, he has led efforts at the federal, state, and local level to improve connections between the health and justice systems. He is a leader in the field in creatively leveraging opportunities to use the strengths of the health system to help people avoid incarceration. His previous experience has focused on legal issues for under-represented populations including representation of clients in asylum hearings, legal research surrounding the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and campaign finance. 

He previously worked at Legal Aid Society of Hawai‘i where he provided support to map Hawai‘i County’s behavioral health safety net and its interface with the criminal justice system. While there, he was a trial attorney and worked with justice-involved individuals regarding the collateral consequences of their justice involvement. He holds Master’s degrees in Genetics/Cell Biology and Philosophy from Washington State University and Bachelor’s degrees in Biology and Chemistry. Prior to joining COCHS, Mr. Mistak was a Senior Editor of the California Law Review at UC Berkeley, School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in California and Hawai‘i.

Advances in Correctional Dental Care 

Amardeep Bains, DMD, Regional Dental Director CCHCS

Dr. Amardeep Bains is approaching 5 years as the Regional Dental Director for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Dr. Bains has worked both as a rank and file Dentist at California State Prison- Corcoran and as a CDCR Regional Support Dentist prior to his current position. Dr. Bains graduated as a dentist in 2009 from King’s College London, United Kingdom, and achieved his membership with the Royal College of Surgeons in 2011. He attained his DMD credentials from Tufts University, Boston, and completed his General Practice Residency at the Oregon Health and Sciences University. He has worked in a variety of settings including private practice, hospital, community, special needs, healthcare consultancy and corrections. Dr. Bains taught at UCLA’s residency program and continues to play an active role with the California Dental Association, sitting on the prestigious Board of Managers.

He is currently attaining his Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and will soon be certified by the International Coaching Federation as a professional life coach. Dr. Bains continues to hold active dental licenses in California, Oregon, United Kingdom and Australia.

The Safe Landing Project: Supporting the Re-Entry Population, Panel discussion

Noha Aboelata, MD. Founding CEO, Roots Community Health  Center

Noha Aboelata, MD, Founder/CEO, Roots Community Health Center has devoted her career to eliminating health disparities and improving the health of marginalized communities. Dr. Noha, recipient of the 2022 James Irvine Leadership Award, is the founding CEO of Roots Community Health Center, where she has pioneered the provision of a community-based, community-driven and community- empowering model for improving wellness that Roots calls “Whole Health.”

As part of this model, she designed culturally responsive, wrap-around medical, social, employment, nutritional and educational services, and community-led public policy engagement. By delivering Whole Health, Dr. Noha empowers Roots members to address and to change the conditions that impact the well-being of individuals, families, and the communities in which they live and work.