Santa Clarita Valley Mayor’s Committee



Employment for Individuals with Disabilities

What we do

The Santa Clarita Valley Mayor’s Committee for Employment of Individuals with Disabilities seeks to 1. EDUCATE employers on the benefits and social responsibility that come with employing individuals with disabilities. 2. EMPOWER employers to hire individuals with disabilities by providing them with essential information and other resources. 3. Increase EMPLOYMENT in the Santa Clarita Valley by working to reduce barriers to hiring individuals with disabilities.

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Cameron Smyth, Mayor of Santa Clarita

SCV Mayor Jason Gibbs embraced the opportunity to Emcee the SCV Mayor’s Committee February 2023 Breakfast (Expectations from Employers) and October 2023 Luncheon (Businesses & Employees sharing the Benefits of Diversity in the Workplace), and our committee greatly appreciates his support. Here is Jason’s bio:

In December 2020, Jason Gibbs became a first-time Councilmember for the City of Santa Clarita. Dedicated to the city, Gibbs has deep ties to the Santa Clarita community, having served on the Advisory Board for the Boys and Girls Club, as well as the Executive Boards for the Valley Industry Association and the WiSH Education Foundation. He was selected to serve the City of Santa Clarita as Mayor in 2023.

After earning both his BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering from Cal Poly, Jason furthered his career in the aerospace sector. As the Senior Principal Engineer of West Coast Operations for GP Strategies Corporation, he contributed to prominent rocket launch programs, including the Delta II, Delta IV, and Atlas V. His expertise lies in the design, maintenance, and integrity of Ground Support Equipment.

Jason brings a passion for, and commitment to, fiscal responsibility, job retention, job growth and preserving and protecting the high-quality of life residents in Santa Clarita enjoy.

Gibbs is a husband, father and a lifelong Californian. Jason and his wife Chandra have lived in Santa Clarita for nearly a decade, which is where they decided to raise their two children and establish roots for their family.

Mayor's Committee Members

The Santa Clarita Mayor’s Committee for Employment for Individuals with Disabilities has nine member who are committed to educate, empower, and employ members of our community.

Alma Terranova / Committee Treasurer

Alma is the former Vice President, Human Resources of the Newhall Land and Farming Company/FivePoint who recently retired after 36 years in Human Resources.

As a lifelong resident of the Santa Clarita Valley, Alma feels the importance of giving back to the community by volunteering is essential. Over the years, she has been involved with a number of civic organizations including Golden Oak Adult Education, United Way, Zonta, American Cancer Society, Boys and Girls Club and the SCV Sheriff Foundation.

She has been a member of the SCV Mayors Committee for Employment of Individuals with Disabilities since 2004 and currently serves as the Committee’s Treasurer responsible for maintaining accurate and complete financial statements and reporting while adhering to all Federal, State, and local laws.

Bret Lieberman / HFA Special Education Teacher

Bret Lieberman brings over 20 years of experience working as a mild/moderate special education teacher specializing in working with young adults on the autism spectrum. Lieberman holds a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from California State Bakersfield and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communications from California State Northridge. Additionally, Lieberman is a Certified Autism Specialist with the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES) and is also a certified New World of Work Instructor, a curriculum developed under the Doing What MATTERS for Jobs and the Economy framework of the California Community Colleges system, which is the largest higher education system in the nation with 72 districts and 115 colleges serving over 2.1 million students each year. Lieberman is an instructor at College of the Canyons along with being newly appointed to the Board of the Santa Clarita Mayor’s Committee which helps educate, empower and employ individuals with disabilities.

Lieberman was awarded Golden Valley High School’s first Teacher of the Year award in 2005. Lieberman was also named one of Santa Clarita’s 51 most influential people in 2010 by the Santa Clarita Signal, and in 2014 was honored as one of the 40 under 40 awardees for making a difference in the Santa Clarita community from the Magazine of Santa Clarita. Additionally, Lieberman was honored as one of Canyon High School’s Most Influential Teachers. Lieberman also possesses over 20 years of experience in producing musical events throughout the greater Los Angeles area and Santa Clarita Valley. Lieberman is the executive producer and creator of the Summer Meltdown Arts and Music Festival. The Summer Meltdown is the only festival in the world that provides young adults with disabilities an opportunity to produce a concert event side-by-side with music professionals working within the entertainment industry.

Scott Shepard / Director, Avenues SLS

Scott Shepard has provided career, transition, and competitive integrated employment services to students and adults with disabilities for over 4 decades, and is committed to the ideal that everyone who has a motivation to work can work, regardless of their ability.  Scott teaches courses on Behavior Assessment & Positive Behavior Support at CSU Northridge, serves as an Honorary Board Member of Cal-TASH, and provides direct support and service coordination to adults with I/DD in the North LA County area as the Executive Director of Avenues Supported Living Services.  He also provides consulting related to transition services, person-centered planning and self-determination through Beyond Assessments.  You can find out more information about the services he provides at Avenues SLS on their website:

Karen Navarro / Career Project Coordinator
Angela Reynolds, Recreation and Community Services Coordinator & Inclusion Support, City of Santa Clarita
Kris Hough / Field Representative/District Scheduler, Senator Scott Wilk
Denise Redmond, Carousel Ranch
Denise has spent her career combining passion with profession.  After graduating from Cal State University, Northridge with a degree in Journalism/Public Relations, Denise spent many years in working at another equestrian therapy program and then as Development Director at a private day school.  In 1997, she and Becky Graham founded Carousel Ranch, beginning with one student and one horse, in Becky’s backyard.  Today, the program has grown into more than was ever imagined, serving over 100 individuals with special needs each week within both the equestrian therapy and Ready to Work vocational training programs.
After 26 years, Denise resigned as Executive Director in January, 2023 and remains on staff as Co-Founder/Executive Director Emeritus.  In this role she focuses on fundraising, grants, donor relations, communications and program development.  It is truly the passion for these incredible children and young adults that has brought so much purpose to Denise’s long career in the non-profit sector.  
Lisseth Carrillo, Workforce & Employment Specialist, NLACRC

Lisseth Carrillo has a Bachelor of Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara in Biological Sciences. She has been with NLACRC since 2021 were she began as a Bilingual Consumer Service Coordinator in the Transition Unit Department, and for the past year has been working as a Workforce & Employment Specialist. She works in supporting and increasing the total number of consumers to obtain and maintain integrated, competitive employment and/or internship opportunities. Prior to working with NLACRC, Lisseth worked as an Early Interventionist, and Behavioral Therapy Specialist.

Jeff Whiteford, Desert Haven Enterprises

How the Santa Clarita Mayor's Committee for the Employment of Individuals with Disabilities came to be:

The Santa Clarita Valley Mayor’s Committee for Employment of Individuals with Disabilities is one of over 30 committees that was established throughout the state to promote the efforts of the California Governor’s Committee.  The Governor’s Committee was originally established in 1947 to assist disabled veterans to become employed; over time the purpose of the Committee has changed and now focuses on promoting information to affect public attitudes regarding all people with disabilities.
The National Association of Governors’ Committees on People with Disabilities was established by the
ODEP (Office of Disability Employment Policy) and NAGC (National Assoc. of Governor’s Committees), formed as an Alliance to provide information, guidance, and access to resources that will help to advance employment opportunities for workers with disabilities. In developing this Alliance, ODEP and NAGC recognize that ODEP and NAGC members are an integral part of this national effort.

The Alliance with the National Association of Governors’ Committees (NAGC) has the following goals:

Outreach and Communication Goals

    • Disseminate information through ODEP’s and NAGC’s websites.
    • Disseminate training and education materials to advance employment opportunities for people with disabilities at conferences and events.
    • Disseminate information on conferences and events that advance employment for people with disabilities.

Training and Education Goals

    • Disseminate training and education materials to local governments, employers and community-based organizations that address disability employment issues and advance recruitment and employment of job candidates with disabilities.
    • Disseminate and share with NAGC members and local partners effective disability employment practices.

Technical Assistance Goals

    • Conduct activities to identify, document and disseminate effective, emerging or model disability employment strategies, policies, and practices.
    • Collaborate to identify employment issues of concern to state and local partners, employers, and people with disabilities to which the Alliance should direct particular attention and resources.

National Dialogue Goals

    • Raise awareness of the importance of the employment of people with disabilities.
    • As appropriate, convene or participate in forums, information sharing discussions, focus groups, or stakeholder meetings on innovative employment solutions or on issues critical to state or local implementation of disability employment policies and practices.
Who We Are.

     The Santa Clarita Valley Mayor’s Committee for Employment of Individuals with Disabilities is one of over 30 committees located throughout the state to promote the efforts of the California Governor’s Committee.
     The Governor’s Committee was originally established in 1947 to assist disabled veterans to become employed; over time the purpose of the Committee has changed and now focuses on promoting information to affect public attitudes regarding all people with disabilities.

The goals of the Committee include:

  • Increasing the number of people with disabilities in the local workforce
  • Offering employers the resources needed to hire valuable employees with disabilities
  • Increasing disability awareness
  • Supporting employers and employees in successful, long-term job placement
  • Promoting employment opportunities for people with disabilities


How is my donation used?

Your donation is used to collect, and disseminate information to employers on the benefits of hiring individuals with disabilities. We also provide grants to disabled individuals who need funding for items or activities that can aid them in finding employment.

What types of  businesses do you work with?

We work with any business that is interested in adding disabled individuals to their workforce. Our board of directors has facilitated hiring in just about every industry from fast food to warehousing and shipping.

Can I request specific industries for my donation to help?

Let’s talk!

Do you work with government agencies?

We currently work with the state Department of Rehabilitation,  North Los Angeles County Regional  Center, The City of Santa Clarita and the William S. Hart School District.

How can I get involved?

Please visit our contact page and drop us a message. That is the fastest way to reach us with any questions or comments you may have!

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Santa Clarita Valley Mayor’s Committee
or fill out the form below
 P.O. Box 803325, Santa Clarita, CA 91380


We help educate employers on the benefit of hiring the disabled, empower the disabled to look for employment and employ those persons with disabilities that seek to join or rejoin the workforce.



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P.O. Box 803325
Santa Clarita, CA 91380