Board of Directors

Johnny WatsonJohnny Watson, President

Representing Inland North San Diego County.

Johnny Watson has served on the board since 2007. Previously he served on two boards of non-profit healthcare organizations in New York.  He is retired from a thirty three year career in the pharmaceutical industry. Johnny is also active in the Rotary Club of Escondido and his church. He and his wife Donna have three daughters and six grandchildren. He serves as Board Advocacy representative.

Richard MarinoRichard Marino, Attorney at Law, Vice President

Representing Inland North San Diego County.

Richard Marino has served on the board since 2003. He is a partner with Marino & Sahar, LLP in Escondido. He is an active member of the Rotary Club of Escondido and serves on the board of the Escondido Charitable Foundation and Oversight Committee for the City of Escondido’s Fire and Police Department.

Stephen YerxaStephen P. Yerxa, Treasurer

Representing Inland North San Diego County.

Stephen Yerxa has served on the board since 2009. He is an experienced Chief Executive Officer of managed care companies and multi-hospital systems. His North County firm currently provides consulting services and project management services to hospital systems and insurance providers.

Katherine SchaferKatherine C. Schafer, RN, PHN, Secretary

Representing the Temecula Area in Riverside.

K.C. Schafer has served on the board since 2008. She is a Public Health Nurse with an interest in health education and prevention. She has worked for non-profit organizations in the community involved in home health in a variety of roles ranging from community liaison to community education to Director of Patient Services. She currently works in Occupational Health where prevention, safety, health education and screening are important.

E-CameronElmer Cameron

Elmer Cameron has served on the board since 2014 and he also volunteers to support Neighborhood Healthcare’s Reach Out and Read Literacy program for its pediatric patients. Elmer has lived in Escondido for 46 years, during which time he has served as Deputy and Acting Superintendent of the Escondido Union School District. He has also served as the President of the Escondido Rotary Club and the Palomar Family YMCA. Prior to coming to Escondido with his wife and four children, Elmer taught at the elementary, secondary and college level specializing in the field of  handicapped children. He has degrees in the field of clinical psychology, speech pathology and public school administration. He has served as an education advisor for California State Assemblyperson Bill Bradley and is currently the President of the Friends of the Escondido Public Library and City Council appointed Trustee for the Escondido Public Library Board of Directors.  As a retired public school educator, Elmer sees how Neighborhood Healthcare, in partnership with other youth-oriented programs prepare young people to grow up healthy and prepared to become productive members of our community.

Judith DescalsoJudith Descalso, Attorney at Law, Director

Representing Inland North San Diego County.

Judi Descalso has served on the board since 1987 and was board President for several years. She has been practicing law since 1982 and has had her own law office in Escondido since 1983. She has lived in Escondido since 1981 and is married to David Ferguson, a partner with Lounsbery Ferguson Altona & Peak, LLP. She was also formerly on the boards of Community Housing of North County and Bar Association of North San Diego County. Judi is also a member of the Boards Human Resource Committee.

Thabit KhalafThabit Khalaf, Director

Representing East San Diego County.

Thabit Khalaf has served on the board since 2011. He graduated at the University of Wales, United Kingdom and became a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). He worked as a member of the University of Technology teaching staff. He also was CEO of Al Damoor Construction and was involved in the Rebuilding Iraq program. He was with the Ramin Group Construction Consultants and at present he is in the process of establishing a university educational bureau.

Bea LizarragaCabiria “Bea” Lizarraga, RN, Director

Bea has served on the board since 2009. She is a nurse manager at Sharp Grossmont Hospital.

m-renteriaMarco Renteria

Marco Renteria has served on the board since 2014 and he also serves on Neighborhood Healthcare’s Community Relations Committee. He is a Financial Representative at Palomar Health and an Access Representative at Scripps Health. Born in Mexico, Marco moved to Escondido as a child in 1990 and graduated from Escondido High School. He is currently attending college to obtain his Bachelor’s in Healthcare Administration. Marco has personal experience with being uninsured and under-insured and understands what a tremendous community asset Neighborhood Healthcare is for thousands of families. He fully empathizes and understands the need that so many people have for quality healthcare that is affordable and accessible.

Frederico SalasFrederico Salas, Director

Representing Inland North San Diego County.

Federico Salas has served on the board since 1999. He has been the Pastor for the Iglesia Latina Emanuel church (a Hispanic congregation) since 1997. He is also a member of a local group of pastors and is the Chaplain for the 24-hour crisis unit at Palomar Pomerado Medical Center. Federico Salas is also actively involved with cross-border assistance.

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