Ben Coughlan

Vice President

As an attorney with Gomez Trial Attorneys in San Diego, Ben is devoted to representing individuals who have suffered catastrophic traumatic brain injuries as a result of automobile collisions, falls and sports.


Cathy Van Vechten


Cathy Van Vechten is an elementary school teacher and mother of a son with a traumatic brain injury. Her goal is to continue to be informed and learn all she can about traumatic brain injuries and help to improve the lives of survivors and their families.


Angela G. Basham, MPH, CHES

Board Member

Angela is a Certified Health Education Specialist and the Regional Education Coordinator for the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center at Balboa Naval Hospital.


Heather Berner

Board Member

Heather is a student in the Rehabilitation Counselor Program at San Diego State University, a former SDBIF intern and a brain injury survivor.


Ruth Curran, MS

Board Member

Ruth Curran has more than 28 years of experience as a strategist, business development executive and organizational behaviorist. In 2004 she had a brain injury that changed her life. She is the author of the book, Being Brain Healthy.

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Leah Dawson

Board Member

Leah manages and supports all charitable, community and marketing efforts of Gomez Trial Attorneys. She is dedicated to making a difference in her community and loves to volunteer.


Regina Eldred

Board Member

For the last eight years Regina has been the social worker for the Sharp Community Re-Entry program, working closely with brain injury survivors, their caregivers and their family members.


Chris Gervasi, PT, CBIS

Board Member

Chris is the Program Director for Learning Services, a Post-Acute Residential Neuro Rehabilitation Program for Brain Injury Survivors.

Heike Kessler

Heike Kessler-Heiberg

Board Member

Heike is an Associate Professor at the San Diego Community College District’s Continuing Education’s Acquired Brain Injury Program and has taught at this program since 1989.


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Cindy Pahr

Board Member

Cindy coordinates the implementation of a unique brain injury services model for children with traumatic and acquired brain injuries both with school re-entry and throughout the progression through school post-injury.


Cecilia Romo

Board Member

Cecilia Romo is the parent of a survivor, Andrea, who sustained a brain injury in a car accident in 2000. Cecilia has been instrumental in starting some of the first walks and the South Bay Spanish Speaking support group.

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Tracy Teregis

Board Member

Tracy Teregis has served individuals with acquired brain injuries and their families for 3+ decades, formerly as a professor from Coastline College’s ABI Program and now through her private cognitive retraining practice in San Diego.