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Northern California

Neuropsychology Forum

Current Board Members

President: Ankhesenamun Ball, Psy.D.

Dr. Ankhesenamun Ball is an experienced, culturally sensitive, licensed clinical psychologist. Her work is patient-centered, utilizing a thoughtful blend of techniques to support her clients in better understanding their abilities. Originally trained in Applied Behavioral Analysis, Dr. Ball felt driven to provide more comprehensive services and went forward to expand her knowledge in clinical psychology. In 2010, she received her Psy.D in clinical psychology from the Alliant International University's California School of Professional Psychology. Her training focused on neuropsychological assessment and forensic issues impacting families, particularly those in underserved communities. Working with community mental health agencies she focused on understanding mental health across the lifespan and designed inclusive treatment approaches to support all ages across family systems. Dr. Ball completed her predoctoral training at Access Institute where she served completed neuropsych assessments with seniors and disabled adults and conducted therapy with a diverse range of diagnoses. Dr. Ball completed her postdoctoral internship at Westcoast Children's Clinic conducting comprehensive assessments using Steve Finn's Collaborative Therapeutic Assessment model.  Additionally, she provided psychodynamic therapy to children, adolescents, and families. Presently based in Berkeley, Dr. Ball is the founder of Being Integrative Clinical Solutions.  In her group practice, she and her team provide comprehensive assessment services and conduct therapy with patients suffering from a multitude of challenges. Email: president@ncnf.org

President Elect:  Position is Available.

Email: presidentelect@ncnf.org

Immediate Past President: Carmen Velázquez, Ph.D.

Dr. Carmen Velázquez is a licensed clinical neuropsychologist with the California Department of State Hospitals, Napa (DSH-Napa). She is employed as a neuropsychologist at this forensic inpatient setting, providing neuropsychological evaluations for patients placed at the hospital by criminal and civil courts. Dr. Velázquez has been admitted as an expert witness in both Forensic Psychology and Neuropsychology. She is also an expert within the hospital for consultation and training in the area of Cross-Cultural Psychology. Dr. Velázquez also provides training and supervision within DSH-Napa’s APA predoctoral internship, primarily in the areas of psychodiagnostic and neuropsychological evaluation, incompetent to stand trial evaluation, and multicultural training/consultation. Dr. Velazquez completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in neuropsychology at the University of Miami, Miller School of Medicine. During her postdoctoral fellowship, she was selected as a research scholar with the Mount Sinai Summer Institute for NeuroAIDS Disparities. Her predoctoral internship was at the APA-Accredited Boston University Center for Multicultural Training in Psychology, where she was admitted to the neuropsychology track. She holds her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Alliant International University, The California School of Professional Psychology, San Francisco campus. Please feel free to visit her website or send her an email: pastpresident@ncnf.org

Secretary: Chelsea Vilinskas, PsyD

Chelsea Vilinskas, PsyD is a licensed clinical psychologist, a graduate of Adler University and is finalizing her second year of postdoctoral residency in neuropsychology at Kaiser Permanente. Currently, her training is focused on adult outpatient medical neuropsychological assessment. During her years of pre-doctoral work she has trained with the Family Institute at Northwestern University and Rush Neurobehavioral center in Chicago.  She also has clinical experience working in health psychology, specifically primary care psychology and psychoncology. Within the field of neuropsychology Dr. Vilinskas’s areas of interest include the effects of varying chronic illness on cognition and pediatric neuropsychology. Email: secretary@ncnf.org

Treasurer: Viktoriya Samarina, Ph.D.

Dr. Viktoriya (Vika) Samarina is a licensed clinical neuropsychologist and a national co-director of the VA Advanced Fellowship Program in Mental Illness Research and Treatment at the Palo Alto VA Medical Center. She is involved with the Stanford/VA Alzheimer’s Clinic and provides neuropsychological didactics for the geropsychiatry fellows. She earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Palo Alto University, and completed her pre-doctoral internship at the Cincinnati VA Medical Center. She later completed a two-year fellowship at Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, Arizona. She was a staff adult/geriatric neuropsychologist at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, MA for 2.5 years before relocating home to the Bay Area to be closer to family. Dr. Samarina has vast experience working with an adult and geriatric population with various neurodegenerative diseases, as well as medical and psychiatric conditions. She also previously served as a member-at-large for the Massachusetts Neuropsychological Society. Email: treasurer@ncnf.org

Member at Large:  Katheryn Conde, Psy.D.

Dr. Katheryn Conde is a Clinical Psychologist with specialty training in Neuropsychology. As a bicultural and bilingual Neuropsychologist, speaking English and Spanish, she has clinical expertise conducting cross-cultural neuropsychological assessments and therapy in both inpatient and outpatient settings. She earned her Psy.D. degree in Clinical Psychology from the Doctoral program at the University of San Francisco. She completed her internship at Loma Linda University School of Medicine. Dr. Conde is currently completing her two-year neuropsychology postdoctoral fellowship at the UC Davis Alzheimer's Disease Center in the East Bay, where she works with clinical patients being evaluated for dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases. Email: membersatlarge@ncnf.org

Member at Large: Rayna Hirst, Ph.D.

Dr. Rayna (Macher) Hirst is an Assistant Professor and Director of Neuropsychology at Palo Alto University, a doctoral program in clinical psychology. She teaches courses on biological psychology and neuropsychological assessment. She also conducts research in neuropsychology and clinical assessment on topics including effort testing and motivation, the effects of chronic marijuana use, sport concussion and recovery, and health-related factors that impact cognitive function in an aging population. She also has a part-time private practice conducting clinical neuropsychological assessments for a broad range of patients. She completed her undergraduate education at Penn State University, where she worked in the Neuropsychology Lab with Dr. Peter Arnett and Dr. Frank Hillary on the Penn State Sport Concussion Study. She completed her M.A. and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at the University at Albany, SUNY, with a focus on Neuropsychology and Addictions with Dr. Mitch Earleywine. Her predoctoral internship in psychology/neuropsychology was completed at the VA Ann Arbor/University of Michigan Healthcare System, under the supervision of Dr. Kenneth Adams, Dr. Linas Bieliauskas, and Dr. Henry Buchtel. She completed her postdoctoral fellowship at Dartmouth Medical School in the Brain Imaging Lab, working with Dr. Laura Flashman, Dr. Robert Roth, and Dr. Heather Wishart. Email: membersatlarge@ncnf.org

Marketing Chair: Joseph S Nijmeh, M.S.

Joseph Nijmeh, M.S. is a fifth-year candidate in the clinical psychology Ph.D. program at Palo Alto University, with an emphasis in Neuropsychology. He is passionate about integrating research with his clinical work in order to improve current treatment outcomes. His dissertation, “Differentiating Effects of Emotion Regulation Strategies on a Cognitive Control Network in a Population with Anxiety and Depression” is an example of this integration. Joseph has presented his research findings at both domestic and international conferences. In March of 2019, he presented preliminary analysis of his dissertation at the International Convention of Psychological Science in Paris. His research helps guide and supplement his clinical work. He has experience working in diverse clinical settings, which include a community mental health outpatient clinic, psychiatric inpatient hospital, psychiatric outpatient hospital,  veteran’s administration health care setting, and both county inpatient and outpatient hospitals. After he completes his Ph.D. program his goal is to become a board-certified Clinical Neuropsychologist and work in an interdisciplinary treatment team. Email: studentrepresentatives@ncnf.org

Student Representative & ECNC Committee: Madison Wright, B.A.

Madison Wright, B.A. is a second-year student in the clinical psychology PhD. Program at Palo Alto University. She is currently working within a community mental health outpatient clinic providing bilingual services to Latinx/Hispanic clients. As a bicultural Nicaraguan American, Madison is passionate about providing equal services to Spanish-speaking and Latinx/hispanic clients, specifically within neuropsychology. Her research interests are the influence of emotion in mind wandering and synthesizing research on negative thought patterns in mental disorders to facilitate treatment. Madison received her bachelors in Psychology with a minor in Language Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz.  Email: studentrepresentatives@ncnf.org

ECNC chairperson: Lyndsay Dell, PsyD

Lyndsay Dell, PsyD, completed her doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the Wright Institute in Berkeley, CA. Her training experiences have included clinical neuropsychology and geriatric psychology in UCSF research, private practice and VA hospital settings with foundations in cognitive behavioral therapies and treating children and adults. She recently completed her post-doctoral residency in clinical neuropsychology and adult outpatient psychiatry at Kaiser San Francisco. Dr. Dell received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Legal Studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She remains actively engaged in both professional and mental health advocacy organizations, having held seats on the Wright Institute’s diversity committee and student leadership roles on California Psychological Association. Email: studentrepresentatives@ncnf.org

For more information about our organization please email our Secretary Chelsea Vilinskas, PsyD at secretary@ncnf.org

Past Presidents

NCNF is proud of the hard work and commitment that our San Francisco Bay Area neuropsychologist colleagues have shown over the last 25 years and counting to make our organization what it is today.

2019 - 2020:  Carmen C. Velazquez, PhD

2018 - 2019: Harmony J. Satre, Psy.D

2017 - 2018: Allen Hobbs, PhD

2016 - 2017: Dave Hawkey, PsyD

2015 - 2016: Rachyll Dempsey, PsyD

2014 - 2015: Sharon Perlman Berry, PsyD

2013 - 2014: Eric Freitag, PsyD

2012 - 2013: Charles Filanosky, PhD

2011 - 2012: Brenda Austin, PhD

2010 - 2011: David O'Grady, PhD

2009 - 2010: Nancy Hoffman, PsyD


2008 - 2009: Richard Delmonico, PhD 

2007 - 2008: Howard Friedman, PhD

2006 - 2007: Darryl Thomander, PhD

2005 - 2006: Tina Guterman, PhD

2004 - 2005: Ellen Krantz, PhD

2003 - 2004: Penelope Zeifert, PhD

2002 - 2003: Michael Drexler, PhD

2001 - 2002: Ann Levy, PhD

2000 - 2001: Rosemarie Bowler, PhD

1999 - 2000: Jane Fielding, PhD

1998 - 1999: Tatjana Novakovic-Agopian, PhD


1997 - 1998: Jack Fahy, PhD

1996 -1997: Gayle Hostetter, PhD

1995 -1996: David King, PhD

1994 - 1995: Sandra Portman, PhD

1993 - 1994: Nell Riley, PhD

1992 - 1993: James R. Cole, PhD

1991 - 1992: Karen Bronk Froming, Phd

1990 - 1991: Catherine Long Popell, PhD

1989 - 1990: Vivian Clayton, PhD

1987 - 1989: Leonard Price, PhD

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