IDA Board Members

 Doug Erber

Douglas G. Erber, Executive Director

Douglas Erber has nearly three decades of nonprofit leadership experience. Before joining IDA, he was president of the Japan America Society of Southern California for 17 years. Doug’s volunteer work is focused on “giving back” for all his family benefited by quality early intervention. For seven years, he served as a trustee and officer of the Harbor Regional Center. In 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown appointed Doug to the state’s Interagency Coordinating Council (ICC) on Early Intervention; in 2019 he was elected co-chair of the ICC. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree at CSU, Long Beach. Doug likes to keep active and is a life-long surfer. But he cherishes most the time spent with his wife and two children.

 Julie Taren

Julie Taren is currently a part-time instructor in the Child and Family Studies Department at California State University, Los Angeles. Also, she has taught at UCLA in the Department of Social Welfare foundation social welfare courses on macro practice in organizational, community, and policy settings. Julie started her career as a Service Coordinator at Harbor Regional Center and her career has come full circle in conducting intakes for a Regional Center in the Early Start Program, where she is supporting families in the assessment process to determine their young child’s eligibility for early intervention services. Julie currently serves as Chair of the Los Angeles County Child Care Planning Committee and State Chair of the Infant Development Association of California, a multidisciplinary organization that provides education, leadership, and advocacy on behalf of children, birth to three with special needs, and their families.

Previously, Julie has over 20 years in local government working on early childhood issues, human services grants, and special projects as a Senior Administrative Analyst for the City of Santa Monica, and on the planning and implementation of Part H Services in California, which is now the California Early Start program.

Julie is dedicated to working on systems change and partnerships to improve outcomes for children and families and in developing the next generation of early childhood leaders. She received the National Association of Social Workers, Region H, Social Worker of the Year (2003) and Social Work Practitioner Award (1993). Julie holds a bachelor’s degree in Elementary and Special Education from the University of Arizona, a master’s degree in Early Childhood Special Education at California State University of Los Angeles, and a Master’s in Social Welfare from UCLA.

River Valley/North Chapter
 Maurean Stephenson

Maurean Stephenson, River Valley Chapter Chair

Maurean Stephenson is an IDA board member serving as the River Valley/North Chapter chair and the Events Committee co-chair. She works in the Early Childhood Special Education credential program at Sac State and retired a few years ago from a long career as an early childhood special educator with the Sacramento County Office of Education Infant Development Program. Maurean grew up in the Bay Area and attended Sonoma State and San Francisco State where she received her B.A., M.A., and several credentials. After receiving her credentials she obtained a teaching position in Sacramento and has lived in Roseville since moving to the area. Maurean loves her work supervising and supporting ECSE teachers who are new to the field.

She enjoys hiking, camping, French Films and spending time with her family. She has enjoyed meeting EI providers from across the state over the last several years through her work with IDA! The relationships she has built through her involvement in IDA are important to her and she looks forward to working with others in the field as IDA grows into the future! 

 Matt Chesnut Matt Chesnut has been supporting children and families for over 20 years. Since 2004, Matt has been the Owner and Executive Director of Parent Infant Programs. Parent Infant Programs provides family centered early intervention services in far northern California. Prior to Parent Infant Programs, Matt held the position of Behavior Analysist for Yolo County Office of Education and was a teacher and the Executive Director of Applied Behavior Consultant's school in Sacramento. He also is a Field Experience Supervisor and Instructor in the Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Teaching Credentials program at Sacramento State University. Matt is an Appointed Member of the Interagency Coordinating Council and is a board member on several local and statewide organizations. Matt holds a Master's degree in Special Education and a Doctoral degree in Education. Matt is the father of two teenagers. He enjoys spending time outdoors, golfing, playing sports, hiking and generally causing mischief.
 Wendy Morrison Wendy Morrison has worked in the field of early intervention for almost three decades after a number of years working as a pediatric nurse. She is an Early Childhood Special Educator and inclusion consultant working in homes and early care and learning settings around the San Francisco bay area. For over a decade, Wendy has provided training to early intervention, early childhood and medical professionals on many topics relevant to the field of early intervention. In addition, Wendy is a faculty member in the Sacramento State University’s ECSE teacher preparation program. She is particularly interested in national and state policy that impacts the field of early intervention. Wendy holds a M.A. in E.C.S.E. and a B.S. in Nursing Science. In addition, Wendy received an authorization in the use of AAC in Early Intervention Settings. As well as serving on the board of the Infant Development Association of California, Wendy is also an active member of CalAIMH and a member of both Zero to Three and CAAEYC.
 Melanie Nocolas Melanie Nicolas’s career in early learning and early childhood education spans over 25 years involving grant administration and early childhood mental health. She is a Program Officer at SETA Head Start, a public agency administering Head Start and Early Head Start programs in Sacramento County. In her work and other advocacies, she endeavors in community building through partnerships and engagement with stakeholder groups to build a network of support for families and young children. A long-time supporter and member of IDA since 2005, Melanie served as IDA State Chair in 2011-2013.
South Chapter
 Lisa Dittbenner Lisa Dittbenner, South Co-Chair
Lisa Dittbenner
has been a board member of IDA since 1999 and became a Co-Chair of IDA’s South Chapter in 2014. Lisa is an Occupational Therapy Instructor for California Children's Services (CCS), Medical Therapy Program of Los Angeles County. She received her Occupational Therapy degree from San Jose State University. From the time she was a student, Lisa has especially enjoyed working with kids who have cerebral palsy and she has dedicated over 30 years to serving the children, families, and staff of CCS. Lisa loves traveling with her husband and daughter.
 Dana Kalek Dana Kalek, South Co-Chair
Dr. Dana Kalek
is the Director of Operations at the Child Development Institute located in Reseda , CA. She received her undergraduate and graduate degree in Child Development from Cal State University, Northridge and her Doctorate degree in Organizational Leadership-Educational Psychology from Pepperdine University. She has been working in the field of early intervention for over 20 years by supporting and influencing those relationships that impact early development in children. She has published several journal articles that focus on the importance of the parent-child relationship as well as presented at various international conferences. She teaches child development as an adjunct professor at Los Angeles Valley College.
 Fran Chasen Fran Chasen, MA, an Early Childhood /Early Intervention Consultant, Children’s Issues and Answers focuses on system change in the area of early intervention, child care and health services for families and children with special needs.
She works successfully in collaboration with parents and other community groups to develop and implement legislation benefiting young children. She has directed community early intervention services, high risk infant, child care, Head Start, Resource and Referral, and Alternative Payment programs. Other roles include: member of the LA Policy Roundtable for Child Care and Development, LA County Child Care Planning Committee - Legislation Committee;California Interagency Coordinating Council on Early Intervention, Co-Chair Systems Committee; Past- President, Southern California Association for the Education of Young Children; SCC Vice President-Programs; CAAEYC Board Member - State Director, Policy Committees; Californians Together; Campaign for Quality Early Childhood Education, World Organization for Early Childhood Education, OMEP -USA Board member. Fran is co-chair of the Policy Committee for IDA.
 Annie Cox Annie Cox is the Executive Director of Early Education Programs for the CHIME Institute. She holds a Masters of Arts in Education: Early Childhood Special Education option and her professional experience in the field of education extends for more than thirty years. She worked as an early intervention specialist and joined the CHIME Institute in 1989 by supporting young children with disabilities in an early general education site. Ms. Cox has contributed significantly to the development of the CHIME Institute mission and philosophy, supported development of new programs including the CHIME Charter Elementary School, and mentored newer members of the staff and leadership team. Ms. Cox has also served as a part-time instructor for the Department of Special Education at CSUN and provides mentoring and supervision for Early Childhood Special Education students. She is a strong advocate for inclusive practices.
 Robin Millar Robin Millar graduated from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill with a B.S. in Physical Therapy and has worked with children with identified needs and their families for over 45 years. In addition to her clinical expertise, Robin is a certified instructor in Interaction Management, and an experienced administrator. Robin has advocated for children by her membership on various Boards of Directors, her numerous presentations at workshops, conferences, and colleges and by writing grants for new service delivery for infants, toddlers, and children. She has supported various organizations with strategic planning and quality improvement initiatives. Robin has been a Community Representative for the California State Interagency Coordinating Council for over 20 years. She is recently retired and was responsible for over 70 staff members and direct services for over 500 children and families. Robin has served as an IDA Board of Director for many years and is a past State Chair of the organization.
 Sheri Rosen Sheri Rosen is presently the Regional Director, Sunny Days of California, Inc., where she oversees Sunny Days Early Start programs throughout 12 Regional Centers. Sunny Days serves children and their families from Imperial County to the Northern Wine Country. Additionally, Sunny Days provides ABA services to children up to 18 years of age in Southern California. Sheri is a member of the IDA South Board and sits on the Policy Committee. She is also a community member of the State Interagency Coordinating Council for Early Intervention and is an appointed member to a variety of DDS committees. Ms. Rosen has worked with children and families for more than 25 years directing early intervention and preschool programs, child-life departments and served as a consultant to Head Start. In 1985, Ms. Rosen developed one of the first early intervention programs in the country for children with HIV and their families and provided training internationally on the developmental needs of children with HIV. She served as the First 5 Kit for New Parents Project Director overseeing outreach, training and distribution of the Kit in Los Angeles county. Additionally, she was the Director of Programs, for Parents Anoymous, Inc. a national child abuse prevention organization where she was responsible for training, technical assistance and capacity building activities with county and state child welfare agencies and community child abuse prevention programs. She is the co-author of Babies Do Amazing Things: A Picture Guide to Development. She has a Master’s Degree in Education specializing in Infant and Toddler Development, from Wheelock College in Boston and a Bachelor’s in Human Development from Pacific Oaks College in Los Angeles.
 Elzabeth Russel

Elizabeth Russel has Degrees in Occupational Therapy, Special Education Administration, and Occupational Science.

Elizabeth has experience in acute care pediatric hospitals, outpatient rehabilitation clinics, deaf and blind services, neonatal intensive care units, school systems, and university programs. Elizabeth presently serves as an Outcomes and Research Coordinator for Los Angeles County Children's Medical Service

 Tracey Tasker Tracey Tasker holds a B.A. in English and Economics and an MBA (from Rutgers University) and an MA in Speech-Language Pathology (from Montclair State University). Tracey started out her career working in the business world and then she had a set of twin boys (one with autism) and three years later a set of twin girls (born two months premature) and she was immersed in the world of early intervention. That’s when she decided that her true calling was to help other parents help their children to communicate. Tracey has been supporting early intervention families as a speech-language therapist for over a decade. Tracey is a recipient of the ASHA (American Speech-Language Hearing Association) ACE award for commitment to lifelong learning. Tracey is the membership chair of IDA (Infant Development Association of California).