Welcome. We’re so glad you are here.

PSI-CA is the California state chapter of Postpartum Support International (PSI), the world’s leading non-profit organization dedicated to helping those suffering from perinatal mood disorders, the most common complication of childbirth.

Our mission is to promote equity and inclusion in awareness, prevention, and treatment of mental health issues related to pregnancy, childbearing, and parenting in California.

2021 PSI-CA Board of Directors Open Positions

If you’ve been wanting to get involved with PSI-CA, now is your chance! We are excited to announce that we have the following three Board of Director positions open: Social Media Chair, Underserved/Special Populations Chair, and Board Member at Large. The application period closes on 12/31/21.

  • You are not alone

    All mothers, fathers, and families deserve support during pregnancy and parenthood.

  • You are not to blame

    This time is challenging.

  • You will be well

    Many types of support are available.


Whether you are searching for a therapist within your insurance network, a medication prescriber knowledgeable in prescribing during pregnancy and lactation, or looking for a local peer support group, we are here to help.

Postpartum Support International offers an online directory of qualified perinatal mental health (and allied) professionals. Moms, families, and providers can now quickly and easily identify trained perinatal mental health providers in your area.

If you are not able to find what you’re looking for in the directory then please reach out to one of PSI’s Support Coordinators (below) who will assist you in finding the help you need and deserve.

mom looking out window

Connect with a Local PSI Volunteer

If you, or a loved one, is suffering with perinatal mood disorders, you’ve come to the right place. Contact one of our local PSI Volunteers, who will help guide you through the process of finding a professional near you with expertise and experience in treating perinatal mood disorders.

To connect with one of the Local PSI Volunteers in your area, complete this form and they will reach out to you within 48 hours.

Connect with Local Volunteer

Find a Support Group:

ARCATA, CA / Humboldt County
Real Talk MotherWoman Support Group

Support group where women can speak openly about the challenges and triumphs of the mothering experience in an environment of safety and mutual respect, and build community.
Babies and toddlers welcome.
3rd Thursday of the month / 6-7:30 pm
Moonstone Midwives Birth Center
4677 Valley East Suite 2 Arcata, CA
Contact Laura 707-223-1638 or Julia 707-599-7919

ARCATA, CA / Humboldt County
Talking About Motherhood Prenatal/Postpartum Support Circle

Using the MotherWoman Support Group model to create a safe, welcoming
environment where women can share their reality and be supported in a non-judgmental environment.
Thursdays 11:00 am—12:30 pm
Northcountry Prenatal Services (Shaw Pavilion)
front of Mad River Hospital
3800 Janes Road Suite 101
Arcata, CA
Contact Kit at 707-822-1385

New + Expectant Parent Meetups
This is a FREE (open to the public) peer and provider lead group for expectant and new parents with children under 1 year. Every Friday 10am-12pm

Palo Alto
Pregnancy and Postpartum Moods and Challenges Group

Blossom Birth

San Francisco
Mama to Mama: Postpartum Wellness Group for Moms

Time: Tuesdays, 10:30am-12:00pm
Location: The Well Clinic, San Francisco, CA
Contact: Robyn Alagona Cutler, MFT
415-309-8464 or robyn@wellsanfrancisco.com
Moms will:
-Learn about the emotional adjustment to motherhood
-Share their authentic experience in a judgment-free zone
-Gain self-care & mindfulness skills to achieve balance
-Build community by connecting with other new moms

San Francisco

Facilitated by: Kerry Savola-Levin, LCSW and Christopher Eaton, MD
Mondays 11:00 am to 12:30 pm
Open to Kaiser Permanente members only
Kaiser Permanente French Campus
4141 Geary Blvd. Third Floor, Group Room #3
San Francisco, CA
Free, newborn/infant drop ins welcome (no need to schedule or register)

San Francisco Bay Area
Adjusting to Motherhood Free Emotional Support Group

Every Thursday 10am-11:15am
Email:  cheryl@supportingmamas.org
Phone: (408) 475 4408
Babies up to 12 months welcome
Welcoming pregnant and new mothers to join us in a safe, confidential setting to share the challenges of motherhood.

Adjusting to Motherhood Free Evening Support group
Every Monday 7-8:30pm.
Contact: allyson@supportingmamas.org
Phone: (408) 475 4408
Babies up to 12 months welcome.
Welcoming pregnant and new mothers to join us in a safe, confidential setting to share the challenges of motherhood.

Santa Cruz
Postpartum Wellness Support Group

Mondays 10:00am to 12:00 noon
Sutter Maternity Hospital
2900 Chanticleer Ave.
Santa Cruz, CA
Contact: Maggie Muir, LMFT, IBCLC
Telephone: 831-426-3016
Contact: Genine Leighton,LMFT
Telephone: 831-566-6830

Santa Maria
CALM – Santa Maria

218 West Carmen Lane, Suite 108
Santa Maria, CA 93458
Telephone: 805.614.9160
FAX: 805.614.9363
PPD Support groups in English and Spanish

South Lake Tahoe Support Group
Wednesdays 5:30-6:30pm
Recommended without infants
1077 4th Street Suite B (Basement)
South Lake Tahoe CA  96150
Please sign up in advance at fit.bartonhealth.org
Telephone:  530-543-5549

Adjusting to Motherhood Emotional Support Group
Mom 2 Mom: Supporting the art of motherhood, pregnancy and beyond

2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month
6:15 pm -7:45 pm
At: Gateway Community Church
1100 S. Sowell Ave
Visalia, Ca 93277
Room 120 ( entrance off Sowell St.)
No cost for group
Babies up to 1 year of age are welcome at group.
Child care is available in nursery
Awana groups are available for school age children
Each group will start with a short informational topic on depression and anxiety during pregnancy or after giving birth
Support groups are facilitated by RNs with many years experience in Maternal Child nursing, lactation and postpartum depression
For more info call: 799-7815 or 733-7168

Ridgecrest Postpartum Depression Support Group
Every other Saturday from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m.
No cost, small children are welcome.
Call or email Sarah for details:

Mother’s Heart Support Group

1st and 3rd Wednesday of every month 5:30 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Sutter Women’s and Children’s Center
1625 Stockton Blvd Ste 201, Sacramento
Please contact Sutter Parent Education at 916-887-4037 for more information.
Mothers Heart Flyer

Sac Maternal Mental Health Support Group

Facilitated by: Gabi Anderson, RNC-OB, BSN, PHN, CCCE and Janet Carroll, RN, CLC, CPD
Location: Redwood Community Space 2955 3rd Avenue, Suite 202, Sacramento, CA 95817
Time: Sundays 10am-12pm Upcoming meetings: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1660409170932797/
No cost, open to anyone affected by Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders. Babies and support people welcome and encouraged to attend. For more information:
Telephone: 916-833-8253

Pregnancy and Postpartum Support Groups

Free, confidential support groups for mothers to find comfort, validation, and resources from one another and from local counselors.

2nd Tuesday of each month from 10:00am – 11:30am
Marina Del Mar Classroom #9, 3066 Lake Drive, Marina

3rd Tuesday of each month from 10:00am – 11:30am
Babies-R-Us, 1930 N Davis Road, Salinas

3rd Thursday of each month from 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Marina Del Mar Classroom #9, 3066 Lake Drive, Marina

Contact: hello@parentingconnectionmc.org / 831-783-5933​

Salinas Support Group

Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital
Thursdays, 4:30-6pm
Facilitated by Carri Budd, RN, MFT
Telephone: 757.4333 ext. 2143
Contact Sue Harrison, RN, BSN, IBCLC at 949-365-3818 or 949-364-4284

Santa Barbara
CALM-Santa Barbara

1236 Chapala Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Telephone: 805.965.2376
FAX: 805.963.6707
PPD Support groups in English and Spanish

Santa Barbara
Postpartum Education for Parents (New Parent Discussion Groups)
Thursday 10am-Noon
Location: Trinity Lutheran Church
Foothill & La Cumbre, Santa Barbara, CA
Telephone: 805-564-3888
For Families with babies 0 to 3 mos

Primeros Pasos
Every other month as a Baby Basics class for expectant partners.
Telephone: 805-852-1595

Pregnancy & Loss Support Group

Hermosa Beach
Postpartum Support Group

Location: Recovery Now, Inc.
2200 Pacific Coast Highway, Suite 304A
Hermosa Beach, Ca 90254
Every Wednesday 10-11am
New moms and children up to 9 months old welcome.
Facilitator: Alicia MacGowan, LCSW, MAC
Please call to register
Telephone: 310.508.9531

San Marino
The Family Room: Peer-to-Peer Postpartum Support Group
This group offers moms a safe and comfortable place to talk about mental health issues that arise during and after pregnancy and strives to help moms suffering from maternal mental illness know that they are not alone. Moms are free to share their stories, ask questions, or just listen.
Note: This group is not facilitated by a mental health professional. It is a peer-to-peer support group.
WHEN: every Thursday, 1 to 2:30 pm
REGISTRATION: not required
COST: free
The Family Room
2318 Huntington Drive
San Marino, CA 91108

Long Beach Support Group
A group for mommies and their pre-crawling babies.
Time: Tuesdays, 10:00am – 12:00pm
Children’s Miller Hospital
2800 Atlantic Avenue
Long Beach, CA
Contact: Emma Santizo, LCSW
Telephone: 562-208-2279
Email   Website

Los Angeles New Moms Connect Support Group
8838 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90035
Thursdays, 10:00am-11am
RSVP required
Telephone: 310.247.0864

Mission Viejo
Mission Hospital Postpartum Emotional Wellness Support Group

Now virtual using Microsoft Teams
Every Tuesday 10-11am. No fee.
For instructions on how to join the virtual support group call (949) 499-8663 or email MHLBMHOP@stjoe.org.

Newport Beach
Spanish  Speaking Moms Support Group

Time: Every Thursday morning from 10:30-11:30am
Address: 307 Placentia Ave Ste. 100B
Newport Beach, CA 92663
Spanish speaking Contact person: Miriam Henderson (949)764-5394
Details: This is a support group for pregnant women and women with babies 12 months or younger. The purpose of the group is to help women learn new ways to cope with the changes that come with motherhood, including changes in mood. The group also focuses on how to improve the relationship between mother and baby and how to improve the physical and mental health of mother and baby.

Newport Beach
Hoag Hospital Maternal Mental Health
2 Free Support Groups:

  1. Monday Evenings from 6pm to 7pm
  2. Wednesday Mornings from 11am to noon

Both groups facilitated by licensed clinicians; babies and support persons welcome.   Groups meet in the Hoag for Her Center for Wellness (500 Superior Ave, Suite 315, Newport Beach, CA).   No registration is necessary but for more details, please call the Hoag Maternal Mental Health Support Line:  949-764-5333

St Joseph Hospital Postpartum Depression Support Group

TIMES: Thursday at 10:30 am for new moms
Thursday at 12:00 for ongoing moms who have attended the new moms group and are ready to work on issues after the ppd has improved.
Postpartum Dads group meets last Wednesday of every month.
Contact: Viviana Schilpp, LCSW
Telephone: 714-771-8000, ext.5037

Informative Postpartum Support Group
Complimentary Needle-less acupuncture
Location: UCS Performance Psych and Testing
1808 Verdugo Blvd Ste 319
Glendale CA  91208
Contact: Smadar Rubinsky at smadar@ucsmed.com
Telephone: 818-330-8258

MaterniTEA Support Group
Time: 1st Thursday of each month from 10:30am-11:30am
Location: Institute for Girls’ Development
95 N. Marengo Ave. Ste 100
Pasadena, CA 91101
Website: https://www.instituteforgirlsdevelopment.com/our-services/family-programs/
Fee: None
Facilitator: Grace Goodman, PsyD, and Sushi Frausto, LMFT
Telephone: 626-585-8075 ext. 105
For more information, please contact Grace Goodman, PsyD: ggoodman@ifgd.care
Babies up to two years welcome.

Pregnancy and Postpartum Stress Group

Facilitated by Nayeli Corona-Zitney, LCSW
First and Third Wednesdays 12:30-2pm
No Cost, free group
Lunch and limited childcare provided
Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center
1798 N. Garey  Ave. Pomona, CA
Womens Center Auditorium
Allow time for parking
For Information: 909-480-8225
The current group schedule, including cancellations will be posted on MeetUp
In this group for Pregnant and New Moms, we:
–Discuss stress, depression, anxiety and difficulty adjusting
–Learn coping skills, relaxation techniques, communication skills
–Help you feel well and be the mom you want to be
Babies are welcome!

Postpartum Wellness Circle for Mamas

Begins May 7th every Thursday in Riverside, CA
10-12 Spanish and 1:00-2:30 English.
For information please call Emilia Ortega-Jara, LCSW  (951) 452-0067
Groups are available throughout Riverside County

San Bernardino
Pregnant and new mama Support group in San Bernardino CA.
Every Wednesdays 1:00-2:30 p.m. for information: (909) 382-7169

San Bernadino
Pregnant and Postpartum Drop-In Support Group

Time: Fridays 9:30 – 11:00 am
1963 North E Street
San Bernardino, CA 92405
Contact: Dr. Christine Bierdrager
Telephone: 909-881-6146

San Diego
New Mom Support Group

Baby Garten Studio, 1947 30th St. San Diego, CA 92102
Meets the 4th Thursday of every month from 11:00-12:00pm
Come join other new moms and babies in a relaxing environment where you are welcome to share both the joys and the challenges of parenthood. This is an open group and there is no cost, so you are welcome to come whenever you like and however often it feels good to you. We will discuss common concerns such as sleep, self-care, nursing/feeding, childbirth recovery, partner and family relationships, and anything else that arises.
This support group is co-facilitated by Dr. Marni Greenberg, a Clinical Psychologist specializing in the pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum and
Audrey Bogorad, Postpartum doula and Certified Lactation counselor.
For more information please email marni@drmarnigreenberg.com or call (858) 432-3290. Pregnancy-Postpartum Flyer

San Diego
Postpartum Health Alliance

For Families pregnant and with babies 0 – 12 months
Warmline: 619.254.0023

San Pedro
Postpartum Support Group

Location: Recovery NOW, Inc.
916 North Western Avenue, Suite #210
San Pedro, Ca 90732
Every Wednesday 1:00 to 2:00 PM
New moms and children up to 9 months old welcome.
Facilitator: Alicia MacGowan, LCSW, LAADC, CAI
Please visit our website www.recoverynowla.com to register
A Free Community Service
Telephone: 310.957.2099 ext. 1

Maternal Mental Health Warmline
Free Confidential Bilingual Counselors will return your call, listen to your concerns, offer a postpartum screening, and help you connect with the right local resources.

Whittier (Los Angeles County)
Pregnancy Loss Support Group
Meets once/month
For more info: Pregnancy Loss Support Group
(562) 276-2717

We do not offer crisis management services. If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, please call 911. For additional safety information, contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.

Did you know that perinatal mood disorders (PMDs) are the number one medical complication of childbirth? While often referred to as postpartum depression or even simply as postpartum, PMD can take many forms and can also occur during pregnancy. Perinatal mood disorders include depression, anxiety, OCD, panic disorder, PTSD, and (much more rarely) psychosis.

Get the facts by visiting PSI’s website at www.postpartum.net

Get Involved

Want to make a difference? Become a member today.

  • Receive updates from PSI-CA
  • Invitation to Members Only Events
  • Help us fulfill our mission and feel good for helping a great cause!

Memberships are tax-deductible donations.


PSI state chapters are made up of a variety of local stakeholders and further the mission of PSI on a grassroots level. Chapters work on a wide range of initiatives that they dictate for themselves because they know their states best! While some states may focus on passing legislation, others may create a robust network of peer support groups, or compile a state-wide list of perinatal mood disorder providers and resources.

All are welcome at PSI! Survivors, mental health professionals, doulas, clinicians etc. volunteer through the chapter in order to give back to their local communities. We work to reduce stigma, increase awareness, and provide connections to resources.

Climb Out Of The Darkness

Every year, PSI hosts Climb Out Of The Darkness, a movement that invites people from all over the world to host local walks and events to spread awareness of mental health challenges of new families. A Climb can be as simple as a play-date in a park, a hike, or a more elaborate event. The majority of Climbs are held in June, near the summer solstice in celebration of long sunny days and a family’s climb from anxiety and depression to recovery.

We gather as a community to walk and socialize. We meet fellow survivors, supporters & providers.


Host a Climb

We are looking for Climb Leaders to host events in your state. Leaders will go through a quick training, and will have the support of other climb leaders, your state chapter and PSI staff.  Learn More.

For Professionals

PSI Provider Directory

Postpartum Support International offers an online directory of qualified perinatal mental health professionals. Join the registry and share your listing as a mental health provider, a healthcare provider, childbirth professional, or support group. As a specialized provider, you can tailor your directory listing to reach out to potential clients in your area. Keep your profile up-to-date with practice announcements, new programs and groups, and more!

Perinatal Psychiatric Consult Line

The PSI Perinatal Psychiatric Consult Line is a service provided for medical professionals who have questions about the mental health care related to pregnant and postpartum patients and pre-conception planning. It is staffed by reproductive psychiatrists who are members of PSI and specialists in the treatment of perinatal mental health disorders. The service is free and available by appointment. Call 1-877-499-4773 and we will match you with an appointment. We will respond to your request within one business day. This service is available for medical providers only.

Training Sessions

We provide top-notch education and training for professionals both in-person and online allowing you to serve your patients with confidence.

PSI-CA 2021 Training Scholarship

PSI-CA is pleased to offer several training scholarships in 2021. These scholarships seek to increase access to training opportunities for BIPOC providers and providers in underserved communities. Applicants must serve residents of California for consideration. Please note, current PSI members are not eligible.

You must submit your application at least 3 weeks prior to the training for consideration. Click here for a list of trainings.

About Us

Our mission is to promote awareness, education, prevention, and treatment of perinatal mental health issues affecting mothers, their families, and support systems in all areas of California.

PSI-CA is an all-volunteer organization and a State Chapter of Postpartum Support International, a 501(c)(3) organization.  The Tax ID number of Postpartum Support International and PSI-CA is 77-0196208.

Dr. Kendra Flores-Carter, DSW

Dr. Kendra Flores-Carter is a Published Author, Professor of Social Work at California Baptist University and a Researcher in the Social and Behavioral Science. An advocate for social justice and change, she has dedicated her career to helping bring awareness to disparities in health and various issues affecting women and children. A former Medical Social Worker for over 10 years she was tasked to provide services to children suffering from trauma related to child abuse and women experiencing significant life crisis such as Intimate Partner Violence, Substance Abuse Complications, Incarceration, Homelessness, and Mental Illness. Locally, nationally, and internationally Dr. Flores-Carter has presented her research, trained professionals, and facilitated workshops on various health related topics. Dr. Flores-Carter is the current President of the Postpartum Support International California State Chapter and Co-Chairs the Inland Empire Maternal Mental Health Collaborative. She is the founder of the Janet Don’t Cry Foundation a non-profit dedicated to providing education, support, and resources on health needs globally.

Jen VarelaJen Varela

Jen brings many years of personal and professional experience to her role as PSI’s California chapter liaison. She is a Certified Gentle Sleep Coach®, co-author of “Loved to Sleep,” and founder of Sugar Night Night, a pediatric sleep consulting service. As a survivor of perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs) herself, Jen has a deep understanding of how to support parents with PMADs in her sleep coaching practice, and she is a past President of Postpartum Health Alliance. Since 2010, she has helped sleep-deprived families via one-one-one coaching sessions, group workshops, and seminars; she’s also been featured on several podcasts. She is the mother of two children and holds a bachelor’s degree in Human Services with an emphasis in Counseling from California State University, Fullerton. Jen is a member of the International Association of Child Sleep Consultants and received training from Infant Mental Health Community Training Program–Hospital for Sick Kids.

Bobbie Spurlock, LCSW, PMH-C

Bobbie Spurlock, LCSW, PMH-C is the mother of three and a personal survivor of PMADS. While Bobbie has worked in Social Work for over 15 years her personal experience with PMADS in 2016 redirected the focus of her work to perinatal mental health and birth trauma. Bobbie is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker working in private practice in Humboldt County California. Bobbie’s private practice provides services to women experiencing or affected by perinatal mental health and trauma. Bobbie is currently the co-facilitator for a free Humboldt County based support group called Postpartum Real Talk which aims to create more access to peer support in her rural area of the state. Bobbie has served on nonprofit boards since her teenage years and is passionate about community service. Bobbie has been providing consulting to nonprofit boards of directors in Humboldt County since 2015 and brings experience in strategic planning, leadership, board governance, and all officer positions to the board.

Jennifer Cordeau

Jennifer Cordeau

Jennifer Cordeau is a former urban planner/project manager turned Certified Style Coach™ with a passion to help empower and support woman through style. After her own fight with postpartum anxiety and depression, Jennifer was inspired to help raise awareness about perinatal mood and anxiety disorders (PMADs) leading her to a local non-profit in San Diego with the same mission. With a master’s degree in Public Administration and a flair for spreadsheets, she was appointed to the Treasurer position on the local Board. Now, she serves as the Treasurer on the PSI California Board of Directors.

When she’s not helping women to feel confident in their own skin, or busting out a new budget, you can find Jennifer belting out made-up lyrics in the kitchen with her nine-year-old daughter, throwing a mangled chew toy to her dog as if in a scene out of the movie Groundhog Day, giving her husband a hard time, and binge-watching Project Runway episodes.

Julie Lopez, J.D., M.S.W.Julie Lopez, J.D., M.S.W.
Climb Out of the Darkness Chair

Julie Lopez is a partner at San Diego litigation law firm Tatro & Lopez, a former social worker, and survivor of PMADS.  She serves on several nonprofit boards, including the San Diego County Bar Association’s Wellness Committee, disABILITY Sports Foundation, and as the Climb Out of the Darkness Chair for PSI-CA.  She has formerly served as co-chair of Lawyers Club’s Life & Law committee, and as Liaison between Postpartum Health Alliance and PSI Central.  After participating in her first Climb as a survivor in 2015, Julie has co-organized San Diego’s Climb Out of the Darkness event for the past six years out of the belief that the Climb can be one of the most powerful experiences in overcoming PMADs.

Dr. Kelly HarkeyDr. Kelly Harkey
Hospital-Medical Liaison Co-Chair

Dr. Kelly Harkey and his wife, Sharon Harkey, CNM are serving together as the Board Liaisons for the Hospital and Medical communities. Kelly and Sharon sought educational training from PSI, to better assist with the management of their patients suffering from PMAD. What became abundantly clear to them was the need for a team approach to establish a comprehensive referral and treatment network in San Diego.

Dr. Harkey is a practicing Obstetrician, as well as serving as the Medical Director for Women’s Services at Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla. He represents a significant number of providers who have struggled to find the resources in our community to care for PMADs. His goal is to establish a blueprint for medical groups and hospitals, which will allow them to expedite the establishment of such a network, while utilizing the framework that PSI already has in place.

Sharon Harkey

Sharon Harkey
Hospital-Medical Liaison Co-Chair

Sharon Harkey has been in OB/GYN nursing for more than 30 years and a Certified Nurse Midwife for more than 22 years. Her career started out in the Army as a postpartum, then labor & delivery nurse and childbirth educator. After advancing her education with a master’s degree, she has worked as a full scope nurse midwife, adjunct faculty teaching maternal child health to RN students and in research and development. Since her very first day functioning independently as an L&D nurse, caring for a woman delivering a stillbirth, she has felt woefully undereducated in the mental side of maternal health. Seeing many women for their postpartum visits, who were suffering from PMADS with nowhere to send them, she sought out PSI for education and expertise in treating these women, with the hopes to create a maternal mental health model of care with her husband, Dr. Kelly Harkey. Sharon feels it is critical to educate the first line OB providers regarding the scope and needs of our patients suffering with PMADS.

Lorena Aynalem, LCSW, PMH-CLorena Aynalem, LCSW, PMH-C
Diversity Inclusion Chair

Lorena Aynalem, LCSW, PMH-C is a psychotherapist in private practice in Santa Clarita. She is a certified Perinatal Mental Health Clinician and focuses her practice on Perinatal Mental Health and overall Women’s Mental Health. She is also a volunteer Coordinator for PSI in the Santa Clarita, Palmdale and Lancaster areas and for Ventura County.

Lorena has been in the mental health profession for 15 years. Prior to private practice she worked primarily in the non-profit sector providing counseling services to underserved populations both in-office and community based. Lorena is second generation Latinx with roots from El Salvador. She currently serves as the Diversity and Inclusion Chair on the PSI CA Chapter Board of Directors.

Meri Levy, LMFT, PMH-C, CLE
Peer Support Chair

Meri Levy, LMFT, PMH-C, CLE is a psychotherapist certified in perinatal mental health with a private practice in Lafayette, California. She is also the Administrative Director of the Bay Area Psychotherapy Institute. After a 12-year career in energy public policy for the State of California, Meri founded The Nurture Center, a store and resource center for new parents, where she ran support groups and provided breastfeeding assistance as a Certified Lactation Educator. After finishing a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology, Meri volunteered for two years as a PSI support coordinator for the San Francisco Bay Area, and currently coordinates the PSI online peer consultation groups for mental health providers and facilitates one of the consultation groups monthly. She is Peer Support Chair on the PSI California Board of Directors, and her goal is to make high-quality, inclusive peer support groups available to new mothers throughout California.

Elyse Springer, MA-CLP, LMFT, PMH-CElyse Springer, MA-CLP, LMFT, PMH-C
Established Organizations Chair

Elyse Springer is a Los Angeles-based licensed marriage and family therapist with focus on Perinatal Mood and Anxiety disorders, LGBTQIA+, depression, trauma, anxiety, OCD, and HIV/AIDS. Prior to private practice, Elyse worked at a cross-section of community mental health organizations, including APLA Health, piloting one of the very first programs embedding mental health in housing services in LA County, and co-chairing LA County’s HIV Mental Health Task Force. Elyse is an emeritus Governing Council member for (formerly The Los Angeles County Perinatal Mental Health Task Force) after serving an eight-year Governing Council term, and maintains her role as training faculty for the organization. Elyse served as a Board Member of national maternal mental health policy and advocacy non-profit, 2014-2019, and currently sits on the organization’s Clinical Advisory panel. In addition, Elyse is Clinical Advisory Board Member for national perinatal loss organization Return to Zero: H.O.P.E. the first clinicians with the national PMH-C (Perinatal Mental Health. Elyse is among Certification) designation, and has begun serving as the Established Organizations board chair for the newly created California chapter of Postpartum Support International.

Carly Marks, BSN, RN, IBCLC, RYTCarly Marks, BSN, RN, IBCLC, RYT
Underserved/Special Populations Chair

Carly Marks, BSN, RN, IBCLC, RYT is the owner of Marks Lactation Support, in San Diego, CA where she provides expert infant feeding care. As a Lactation Consultant, she has learned that the way parents feel is dramatically impactful in infant feeding. Human milk is a high priority, but cannot be at expense of a parent’s mental wellbeing.

Carly started her career as a Navy nurse, and her husband continues over 20 years of service in the US Navy. She is a PMADs survivor, although undiagnosed until recently (10 years after the birth event). Because she suffered in silence while piecing together components of care for herself, she knows there is a better way. All families deserve competents care. She serves as the Underserved/Special Populations Chair on the PSI California Board of Directors.

Melissa Nefalar, LMFT, PMH-C (she/her)
Social Media Chair

Melissa Nefalar, LMFT, PMH-C is a second generation Filipino-American and native San Diegan. She’s a mom to three kids, has a spouse in education, PMAD survivor, and is passionate to work with parents and their families utilizing mind-body and holistic approaches. As a licensed marriage and family therapist, she has a full time private practice specializing in perinatal mood and anxiety disorders, brainspotting, children/teens, and grief/loss. She also currently serves on the board of directors for Postpartum Health Alliance (PHA) in San Diego as the PSI Liaison Co-Chair.

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