Executive Leadership Team

 

Meredith Williams, Acting Director

Meredith Williams, Deputy Director

Meredith Williams is the acting director of the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC). She was selected to serve as acting director by Secretary Blumenfeld on January 9, 2019.

Meredith joined DTSC in December 2013 as the Deputy Director of DTSC’s Safer Consumer Products program to lead the implementation of California’s groundbreaking program to reduce toxic chemicals in consumer products. She has expertise in research and development, product management, and operations for Fortune 500 technology, consumer product, and chemical companies including Applied Materials and 3M.

Following her work for Fortune 500 companies, she held a number of leadership positions at the San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI), a nationally-recognized center for science in support of aquatic resource management.

Meredith strives for collaborative solutions to complex problems and has a track record of championing interdisciplinary project management approaches. She holds B.S. from Yale University and a Ph.D. in physics from North Carolina State University.

 
 

Francesca Negri, Chief Deputy Director

Francesca Negri, Chief Deputy Director

Francesca Negri, of West Sacramento, was sworn in as chief deputy director of the California Department of Toxic Substances Control on Jan. 4, 2016. Previously, Negri served as chief at the California Department of Transportation, Division of Procurement and Contracts from 2010 to 2016. She was chief of human resources at the California Department of Motor Vehicles from 2009 to 2010 and held several positions at the California Department of Transportation from 1998 to 2009, including assistant chief of the Division of Human Resources, office chief of classification and hiring, branch chief of return to work and the Workers’ Compensation Program, discipline analyst and equal employment opportunity specialist. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development from the University of California, Davis.

 
 

Deputy Directors and Assistants

 

Amilia Glikman, Chief Counsel

Amilia Glikman, Chief Counsel

Amilia Glikman of Sacramento was sworn in as chief counsel at the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) on Friday, June 24, 2016. Amilia served as Assistant Chief Counsel at DTSC during the last year and served as an Attorney III and Attorney IV at the Department from 2012 to 2015, specializing in cost recovery and remediation of contaminated properties. Previously, Amilia was a Senior Legal Research Attorney at the Sacramento County Superior Court from 2010 to 2012 and was an Associate Attorney at Downey Brand LLP in the Environmental Law Practice Group from 2002 to 2010. Amilia earned a B.S. from the University of California at Berkeley and a J.D. from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law.

 
 

Ana Mascareñas, Assistant Director for Environmental Justice and Tribal Affairs

Ana Mascareñas, Assistant Director for Environmental Justice and Tribal Affairs

Ana Mascareñas was appointed as the department’s first Assistant Director for Environmental Justice in May 2015. Prior to joining DTSC, Mascareñas was a membership coordinator, then policy and communications director at Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles, where she promoted environmental health protections and fought for social and environmental justice in local, state, and national policy efforts. From 2006-2008, Mascareñas served in the Los Angeles and Washington D.C. offices of Congressman Xavier Becerra, directly assisting constituents in their claims and applications with federal agencies. She was a member of the East Los Angeles Residents Association board of directors from 2007 to 2015, where she organized alongside community, youth, and business leaders to improve East Los Angeles’ social, educational, economic and structural resources through advocacy and civic engagement.

Mascareñas graduated from Brown University with bachelor degrees in Human Biology and Sociology, and received a Master of Public Health in Environmental Health Sciences from the Fielding School of Public Health at the University of California, Los Angeles. She is a 2010 graduate of Hispanas Organized for Political Equality (HOPE) Leadership Institute.

Mascareñas was born in northern California, raised in New Mexico, and proudly comes from a three-generation California farmworker family.

 
 

Bruce LaBelle, Research Scientist Manager

Bruce LaBelle, Research Scientist Manager

Bruce LaBelle has directed the Department’s Environmental Chemistry Laboratory since 2005. From 1989 until 2005, he worked in DTSC’s Pollution Prevention Program, evaluating environmental technologies. From 1987 until 1989, he was a field inspector in DTSC’s Enforcement Program. He has a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the University of California, Davis, and postdoctoral research experience at the UC San Francisco Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry in structure-activity relationships and at the University of Colorado, Boulder in the synthesis of optically active chemicals.

 
 

C. David Johnson, Jr., Legislative Director

C. David Johnson, Jr., Legislative Director

C. David Johnson, Jr., was appointed Legislative Director in 2016. Prior to joining the department, David was a legislative director in the California State Assembly from 2014 to 2016 and deputy legislative counsel in the Office of Legislative Counsel from 2011 to 2014. He started his career in state government as an Assembly Fellow in the Jesse Marvin Unruh Assembly Fellowship Program in 2010.

David earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of California at Berkeley, Master of Arts degree in government and politics from St. John’s University, and Juris Doctor degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He is a member of the State Bar of California.

 
 

Christie Bautista, Special Assistant for Program Review

Christie Bautista, Special Assistant for Program Review

Christie Bautista of Glendale has been appointed as Special Assistant for Program Review at the California Department of Toxic Substances Control on March 26, 2018, where she has served as a senior environmental scientist since 2013 and as an environmental scientist from 2006 to 2013.

Bautista was president of the American Society for Public Administration, Southern California Chapter from 2014 to 2016, fire and environmental specialist at the Glendale Fire Department from 2004 to 2006 and staff environmental consultant at Clayton Group Services from 2002 to 2004. She earned a Master of Public Administration degree from California State University, Northridge.

 
 

Ellen Moratti, Chief Financial Officer

Ellen Moratti, Chief Financial Officer

Ellen Moratti is the department’s Chief Financial Officer. Prior to this appointment, Ms. Moratti served as the Director of the Administrative Services Division at the California Public Utilities Commission. Previously, she was a Principal Program Budget Analyst with the California Department of Finance. Ms. Moratti has over 25 years of experience in government operations, budgeting, and developing policy. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Chicago and a Master’s degree in Public Policy from Harvard University.

 
 

Grant Cope, Site Mitigation & Restoration Program Acting Deputy Director

Grant Cope, Site Mitigation and Restoration Program Acting Deputy Director

Grant Cope has been named the Acting Deputy Director for the Site Mitigation and Restoration Program. Cope was appointed and currently serves as the Deputy Secretary for Environmental Policy at the California Environmental Protection Agency. Previous to his appointment to CalEPA, Cope lived and worked in Washington D.C.

He served as Senior Counsel for the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works handling an array of legal and policy matters, including toxic chemical regulation, cost benefit analysis, administrative law, drinking water quality, scientific integrity, nuclear safety and hazardous waste cleanup issues. He worked to pass national legislation adopting California state laws on formaldehyde levels in composite wood products and eliminate lead from drinking water pipes, while also helping to preserve various state laws, including Proposition 65.

During 2005, Grant also developed national policies on hazardous waste management and cleanup for the Sierra Club. From 2002 to 2004, Grant was an Associate Attorney with Earthjustice, and Staff Attorney at U.S. Public Interest Research Group from 1998 to 2002 where he analyzed and developed national legislation, rules and policies concerning drinking water quality, and toxic waste cleanups. He began his career championing the environment as at the Northwest Environmental Defense Center from 1996 to 1998, including as the organization’s Executive Director.

Grant graduated with honors from the University of California at Berkeley in 1993, where he received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science. In 1998, he received a Juris Doctor and a Natural Resources Law Institute Award from Northwestern School of Law of Lewis and Clark College.

 
 

Jennifer Benson, Chief Information Officer

Jennifer Benson, Chief Information Officer

Jennifer Benson is the Chief Information Officer, beginning with DTSC on May 4, 2017. She has served as a Systems Software Specialist II (Supervisor) for Cal EPA since 2015 and Benson previously worked for DTSC in the Office of Environmental Information (OEIM).

Benson has over 30 years of information technology experience, with the last 20 focused on project, program, and portfolio management in the state, local, and private sectors. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, Management Information Systems, and has achieved several technical certifications including Project Management Professional, VMware Certified Associate, Information Technology Infrastructure Library and Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer.

 
 

Karl Palmer, Safer Products and Workplaces Program Acting Deputy Director

Karl Palmer, Safer Products and Workplaces Program Deputy Director

Karl Palmer has been named the Acting Deputy Director for the Safer Products and Work Places Program. Prior to this position, he managed the Safer Consumer Products Branch where he was responsible for developing, implementing, and enforcing California’s Safer Consumer Products regulations.

Karl has worked for DTSC for over 30 years in a wide array of management and technical positions, including managing programs in Pollution Prevention, Hazardous Waste Management and Emergency Response. Karl received his Bachelor of Science degree in Resource Sciences from the University of California, Davis.

 
 

Rizgar Ghazi, Hazardous Waste Management Program Acting Deputy Director

Rizgar Ghazi, Hazardous Waste Management Program Acting Deputy Director

Rizgar A. Ghazi is the Acting Deputy Director of the Hazardous Management Program. Previously, Rizgar served as the department’s Permitting Division Chief from 2015 to 2017. Rizgar has over 29 years of experience in the environmental field with an emphasis in hazardous waste management and environmental restoration and clean up, as well as, technical, supervisory and managerial experience. More recently, Rizgar was responsible for reorganizing the hazardous waste permitting program and creating a streamlined permitting process to make timely and protective permit decisions.

Rizgar received a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the California State University, Sacramento and is a licensed professional engineer.

 

 
 

Rosanna Westmoreland, Office of Communications Deputy Director

Rosanna Westmoreland, Office of Communications Deputy Director

Rosanna Westmoreland is the Deputy Director for the Office of Communications. Governor Brown appointed her on September 12, 2016. She served as the external communications manager in the office of public affairs at the California Public Employees’ Retirement System since 2012. There she provided strategic advice to the CEO, Executive Team and the media on challenging and complex issues involving the pension fund’s investments, health and retirement issues and municipal bankruptcies.

Westmoreland was vice president of communications and marketing at the California Medical Association from 2010 to 2011 where she managed media relations, physician communications and the production of the California Physician magazine. In addition, as division manager of communications and news at the California Farm Bureau Federation from 2007 to 2010 Westmoreland managed the weekly agricultural newspaper Ag Alert, the weekly television program California Country and the bi-monthly companion magazine California Country. She earned a Master of Arts degree in Organizational Management from the University of Phoenix and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communications from California State University Bakersfield.

 
 

Suhasini Patel, Site Mitigation and Brownfields Reuse Program Assistant Deputy Director

Suhasini Patel, Site Mitigation and Brownfields Reuse Program Assistant Deputy Director

Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. appointed Suhasini Patel the assistant deputy director of the Site Mitigation and Brownfields Reuse Program at the California Department of Toxic Substances Control on Sept. 25 of 2017. Patel joined DTSC in 2007. From 2007-17, she worked in DTSC's Cleanup and Hazardous Waste Management Programs where she served in several positions, including chief of special projects unit, chief of research and policy development unit and hazardous substances scientist. Most recently Patel has served as an Environmental Program Manager on the Exide Residential Cleanup project. In that capacity she has demonstrated her deep commitment to public service, to environmental justice and restoration, and to DTSC.

Prior to joining DTSC, she was project chemist at TetraTech Environmental Management Inc. (2005 to 2007), information technology services manager at Entech Analytical Laboratories (2003 to 2005) and information systems department manager at Therma Corporation from (1997 to 2003). She holds a Master of Science degree in microbiology from Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda.

 
 

Administrative Services Deputy Director

Vacant

This position is currently vacant.

 
 

Chief, Office of Civil Rights

Vacant

This position is currently vacant.