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Our Staff

Meet the ILRC Family. Our services are spread across four offices located in Santa Barbara County, San Luis Obispo County, and Ventura County. The information for all four offices are below.

ILRC Offices

San Luis Obispo

1411 Marsh Street #109
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

(805) 462-1162 Voice/Text (TTY)
(805) 752-1261 Fax
(805) 464-3203 Video Phone

Santa Barbara

423 W. Victoria Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101

(805) 963-0595 Voice/Text (TTY)
(805) 963-1350 Fax
(805) 284-9051 Video Phone

Santa Maria

222 West Carmen Lane #106
Santa Maria, CA 93458

(805) 925-0015 Voice/Text (TTY)
(805) 332-3213 Fax
(805) 354-5948 Video Phone

Ventura

702 County Square Drive #105
Ventura, CA 93003

(805) 650-5993 Voice/Text (TTY)
(805) 650-9278 Fax
(805) 256-1036 Video Phone

Meet Our Staff

(Click each staff member's photo to read their bio.)

Rosie Florido Bookkepper

Photo of Rosie Florido.

Rosie Florido

  • Bookkepper

Lauren Utterback Independent Living Advocate

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Lauren Utterback


Based in the Santa Maria office serving North Santa Barbara County.

Lauren started working at ILRC in 2020. Her favorite color is olive green. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is building relationships in my community. She chooses to work at ILRC because she has a disability and it is incredible to work with other people with disabilities. Her favorite independent living movement advocate is Judy Heumann because she had the strength to propel our movement forward.

Carol Baizer Community Living Advocate/Benefits

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Carol Baizer


Based in the Santa Barbara office serving all counties.

Carol started working at ILRC in 1997. Her favorite color is blue. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is being a part of an organization that provides a different window to the world. Her favorite independent living advocate is Marta Russell.

Jennifer Griffin Interim Executive Director

Photo of Jennifer Griffin.

Jennifer Griffin


Based in the Santa Barbara office.

Jennifer started working at ILRC in 2000. Her favorite color is red. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is she never wanted to work in a very large company where she would be just a number. She knew she wanted to work where she could feel good about what she does and enjoy those that she worked with. Her favorite independent living advocate is Maysoon Zayid.

Nicole Janikowski Independent Living Advocate

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Nicole Janikowski


Based in the Santa Maria office.

Nicole started working at ILRC in 2015. Her favorite color is burgundy. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is that she discovered her passion to help her community. When she was in need of services and peer support she was unable to find someone in her area that would work with her to get back on her feet. Her love is working with consumers hoping to build satisfaction and become self-sufficient. Her favorite independent living advocate is Natasha Jade Devon.

Rosa Lopez Information & Referral Specialist - Bilingual

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Rosa Lopez


Based in the Santa Barbara office serving Santa Barbara County.

Rosa started working at ILRC in 2005. Her favorite color is green. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is she has always loved to help people, but at ILRC you really help people who feel like this is their last hope, they feel so appreciative just for you to take time to hear their struggles and make them feel equal to everyone else. Her favorite independent living advocate is Eunice Kennedy Shriver.

Jamie Zimmerman Independent Living Advocate

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Jamie Zimmerman


Based in San Luis Obispo office serving San Luis Obispo County.

Jamie started working at ILRC in 2020. Her favorite colors are green and yellow, if she absolutely had to choose, green, but she doesn't want to! For her, the best part of working at ILRC is being able to hold the space for our consumers in such a way that they feel seen, heard, and empowered. She feels it is her purpose in this world to provide a mirror that reflects the unique and powerful human being each person truly is. Once this is accomplished, her heart soars at sharing in the opportunity to help individuals uncover the tools within themselves to accomplish their goals. To her, being an advocate with ILRC means showing people how expansive and beautiful their lives can be. There is really no better feeling than being a part of that process. Favorites in her life often change and evolve as she grows and evolves. Right now, her favorite independent living movement advocate is Denise Sherer Jacobson. When she watched the documentary, Crip Camp, about the Disability Revolution, she fell in love with her gumption. She fully encompasses being the leading lady in her own life, a role Jamie aims to step into each and every day.

Ben Samuel Focused Population Case Manager

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Ben Samuel


Based in the Ventura Office serving Ventura County.

Ben started working at ILRC in 2019. His favorite color is Turquoise. For him, the best part of working at ILRC is advocating and creating awareness within our community for individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. His favorite Independent living advocate is Jean Wirth, an English professor from San Mateo, California. She had developed peer counseling and supports for minority college students in order to reduce their dropout rate. After meeting Ed Roberts, founder of the Rolling Quads and father of the Independent Living Movement when he was a student at UC Berkeley, they created the peer counseling and supports philosophy we use with consumers with disabilities today!

Tamarr Paul Assistive Technology Coordinator

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Tamarr Paul


Based in the Santa Barbara office serving South Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.

Tamarr started working at ILRC in 2020. His favorite color is blue. For him, the best part of working at ILRC is having the opportunity to engage with his consumers and co-workers to create positive change while being able to be active in the community. His favorite independent living movement advocate is Dani Anderson.

Emily Bridges Community Living Advocate

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Emily Bridges


Based in the Santa Barbara office serving South Santa Barbara County.

Emily started working at ILRC in 2020. Her favorite color is blue. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is collaborating with teammates from diverse backgrounds to help local people with disabilities lead fulfilling lives in their communities. Her favorite independent living advocate is Liz Weintraub, because of her dedication to ensuring that all people across the country get the necessary representation and services. Liz's motto, "all means all," are words Emily strives to incorporate in her professional and personal life.

Alexa Martin Program Manager

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Alexa Martin


Based in the Ventura office serving Ventura County

Alexa started working at ILRC in 2017. Her favorite color is teal. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is she has always been passionate about advocating for underrepresented communities and she gets to do that each day here! Her favorite independent living advocate is Richard Pimentel.

Brian Hollander Program Manager

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Brian Hollander


Based in Santa Barbara office.

Brian started working at ILRC in 2018. His favorite color is purple. For him, the best part of working at ILRC is empowering people in the truest sense of the word to live full lives with equal access in the community, but also to take an interest in creating change in their communities. His all time favorite independent living advocate is Ed Roberts, without whom ILC's and the ILC movement would not exist.

Sabrina Bies Administrative Coordinator

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Sabrina Bies


Jerry Mihaic Information & Referral Specialist - Bilingual

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Jerry Mihaic


Based in San Luis Obispo office serving San Luis Obispo County.

Jerry has been with ILRC for many years, most recently since 2017. His favorite color is azure blue. For him, the best part of working at ILRC is that after having worked in the cut-throat business world for several years, he finds it refreshing to work in an environment that cares about others and helps humanity be its best. He also likes the diversity of people he comes in contact with and how he’s always learning something new that he can share with the individuals we serve. His favorite independent living advocate is Wade Blank, Founder of ADAPT. Although he says, ILRC has many amazing advocates he has met throughout the years.

Jaydon Gaines Community Living Advocate

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Jaydon Gaines


Based in the Ventura Office serving Ventura County.

Jacob Lesner-Buxton Systems Change Advocate

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Jacob Lesner-Buxton


Based in the Santa Barbara office serving all counties.

Jacob started working at ILRC in 2013. His favorite color is tie-dye. For him, the best part of working at ILRC is being paid to: help, love, understand and be there for his communities in times of joy and pain. His favorite independent living advocate is his mentor, Dolores Tejada.

Jennifer Martinez Information & Referral Specialist - Bilingual

Photo of Jennifer Martinez.

Jennifer Martinez


Based in the Ventura office serving Ventura County.

Jennifer started working at ILRC in 2011. Her favorite color is pink. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is being part of something bigger than herself, ILRC is a diverse team of individuals with an array of views and beliefs, but a team of advocates with the commonality of hope and passion to make a difference in other people's lives. Her favorite independent living advocate is Dani Anderson because she always manages to find the strength to keep fighting, even when her strength and her will are tested. She is a great example to all.

Petra Lowen Community Living Advocate

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Petra Lowen


Based in the Santa Barbara office serving South Santa Barbara County.

Petra has been with ILRC for many years, most recently since 2000. Her favorite color is blue. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is she is very happy and proud to be working for a non-profit agency as opposed to the corporate world. When a consumer tells her that she has made a real difference in their life and they accomplished a major goal with our assistance it is the best feeling in the world. When our consumers improve their independence it improves the whole community. Her favorite independent living advocate is Anette Rubino.

Jamie Coyle Community Living Advocate

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Jamie Coyle


Based in San Luis Obispo office serving San Luis Obispo County.

Veronica Dominguez Older Individuals Who Are Blind Coordinator

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Veronica Dominguez

  • Older Individuals Who Are Blind Coordinator

Based in San Luis Obispo office serving San Luis Obispo & Santa Barbara County.

Veronica started working at ILRC in 2020. Her favorite color is midnight blue. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is that she is surrounded by a team of individuals who are passionate about their jobs. Her favorite Independent Living movement advocate is Brian Hollander because of his experience and passion in the ILRC community.

Alea Wade Older Individuals Who Are Blind Advocate

Photo of Alea Wade.

Alea Wade


Based in the Ventura Office serving Ventura County.

Alea started working at ILRC in 2020. Her favorite colors are royal purple and black. For her, the best part of working at ILRC is that she helps bridge the access gap between consumers and the technologies and/or spaces that might otherwise have excluded them. Advocating for accessible equipment and technologies for all groups is both necessary and essential to disability justice. Her favorite independent living movement advocate is her mother, an advocate for disability rights and independent living and she's most definitely Alea’s biggest inspiration in this work.