Board of Directors
Irma E. Martínez, MA, Executive Director, Chair
Ms. Martinez has worked for the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health (LAC DMH) for over 24 years as manager and program health analyst. Her work with the county has involved planning, implementing and directing multiple programs including the Latino Access Program, Outreach, Training and Community Education, and providing Consultation and Technical Assistance to multiple mental contract providers through the county. Since 2004, Ms. Martinez has also been an associate of the Latino Behavioral Health Institute (LBHI), a non-profit organization that aims at enhancing human services to difficult to reach populations including ethnic groups and disadvantaged families. With LBHI, she has planned, coordinated and directed educational projects including the Latino Access and Farm Workers studies in the county of Ventura. Ms. Martinez founded El Faro Institute in 2013 in order to address service gaps for holistic and culturally sensitive programs aimed at youth, their families and for orphan and abandoned children. Ms. Martinez also volunteers her time in Tecate Mexico to provide counseling and consultation to orphanages, and Los Angeles County developing education and mentorin services for youth and families. Ms. Martinez received a Master degree in Psychology from California State University Los Angeles in 1995 and obtained a license as Psychologist in Guadalajara Mexico in 1988.
Angel Rendon, M.D.
Dr. Rendon was born and raised in Mexico. He graduated from the National Autonomous University of Mexico City as a Physician/Surgeon and completed his General Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Training in the U.S. at the Los Angeles County University of California (USC) Medical Center. He has worked as full time psychiatrist at the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health (LAC-DMH) since 1987 serving families in underserved population areas. Dr. Rendon has also been working in multidisciplinary treatment teams at Kedren Community Mental Health Center since 1991. One of Dr. Rendon’s greatest motivations is to help families reach their goals by providing culturally sensitive interventions that acknowledge the culture and the challenges experienced by each family. Many of the patients served by Dr. Rendon are members of immigrant families from Latin American countries that present complex issues due to immigration experiences (e.g., separation and reunification issues). Dr. Rendon is committed to provide services that promote on-going communication and psycho-education to ensure family concerns are expressed and their goals are met. Dr. Rendon has been a supervisor of Child and Adolescent Fellows from LAC-University of Southern California Medical Center for over 10 years. In addition, Dr. Rendon has been an outside preceptor for the Family Medicine Residency Program from White Memorial Medical Center for over 10 years. He has also collaborated with and supervised multidisciplinary teams for several years leading case conferences to review the latest developments on treatment modalities, frequent psychiatric disorders, and differential diagnosis. In his daily practice, Dr. Rendon pays special attention to psychopharmacology issues of side effects and drug to drug interactions with other medications. Through his 30 years of experience, Dr. Rendon has developed expertise in the identification of ADHD, Mood Disorders, Anxiety Disorders, Pervasive developmental Disorders and Psychotic Disorders through comprehensive and integrated multi-source of information diagnostic process and treatment. Dr. Rendon continues being a Fellow Member of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. In 2012 Dr. Rendon was recognized by his co-workers at LAC-DMH as the employee of the year in the category of Leadership.
J. Abraham Gomez, Member
Abraham is a youth representative and member of El Faro Institute Board of Directors. Abraham is currently studying at the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California (USC). He is pursuing a degree in electrical engineering. His work experience includes six months at St. Jude Medical in Sylmar Ca. in 2015 where he built and verified the credibility of pacemaker radio frequency & magnetic resonance imaging testers, six months at USC Distance Education Network (DEN) in 2014 where he managed student camera operators to provide clear visuals and audios for online students and facilitated communication among professors, online students, and DEN administrators. He also designed, built and tested rover design in competition with a fast paced team setting where he won 1st place during a three-day workshop at the National Community College Scholars Program with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) from November 2014 to February 2015, and more recently was awarded a summer internship at Lockheed in the state of Pennsylvania. Abraham’s extracurricular experience comprehends project manager for the Lava Lab Club at USC, Member of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), and finally, volunteer for El Faro Institute as youth mentor since March 2013. His contributions include to provide information and solutions on high school dropout rates, train and mentor youth to reach professional goals and deliver informational/thought provoking speeches to students and parents. Jonathan Montenegro, Vice-Chair
Mr. Montenegro is an entrepreneur with 30+ years of experience in real state consulting. He is also an avid golf player and fan of exercise. He has run countless marathons through his life and is currently physical trainer and mentor at the YMCA. He is passionate and committed to help underprivileged children and families by supporting programs that offer quality services, mentoring and support. He joined the Board of El Faro Institute in 2015.-
Chistina Gonzalez, Member