Natalie Profant Komuro
Natalie began working in homeless services in 1987, joining PATH Achieve Glendale in 2007. Over the next ten years, she and the Board of Directors rebranded the agency as Ascencia and led a successful $7.79 million capital campaign, Advancing Ascencia, to fund Ascencia’s new home and program expansion. During this period, Ascencia added Winter Shelter operations and expanded outreach in Burbank and West Hollywood. Her work with Ascencia drew on twenty years’ of prior experience. Initial findings of her 1989 study of homeless shelters for L.A. Homeless Health Care Project were presented at an American Public Health Association conference and led to her hiring as Beyond Shelter’s original program director. In that capacity, she implemented one of the nation’s earliest rapid rehousing programs for homeless families and presented the methodology at conferences and workshops nationally.
From 1997 – 2007, she served as Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority’s Director of Policy and Planning where she coordinated efforts with the 2000 Census, led the 2007 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count, and authored three Continuum of Care narratives for applications yielding over $100 million in federal funds for Los Angeles City and County. Ms. Komuro’s recent civic work includes Rotary Club of Glendale (2013-14 President), and Glendale YMCA Board of Directors, 2008-2013. B.A., International Relations, Pomona College; M.A., Urban Planning, UCLA Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Planning; and 1994 Thornton F. Bradshaw Fellow, Claremont Graduate University; She is Lecturer of Marketing at California State University, Los Angeles, biennial courses, 2012-2016. The Glendale Chamber of Commerce has named her 2017 Woman of the Year.
She is Lecturer of Marketing at California State University, Los Angeles, biennial courses, 2012-2016. The Glendale Chamber of Commerce has named her 2017 Woman of the Year.
Laura E. Duncan, Ph.D.
Director of Programs
Dr. Duncan joined Ascencia in 2014. She has over 36 years experience directing programs for large nonprofit organizations, including 18 years managing residential facilities and 12 years overseeing programs that serve U.S. military veterans. Prior to Ascencia, Dr. Duncan served 2 years as the Director of Short Term Care & Senior Veteran Programs at The Salvation Army – The Haven in Los Angeles. Prior to that, she served nearly a decade as a Director of Programs at Goodwill Southern California in Los Angeles.
Director of Operations
Mr. Sosikian joined Ascencia in 2014. A seasoned operations executive and former small business owner, he brings to Ascencia more than 15 years of management and leadership experience from a diverse cross section of industries including non-profit, software, internet marketing, finance and media. Mr. Sosikian has deep rooted volunteerism, spanning more than 20 years, in the Armenian Youth Federation as well as its affiliate organizations. He was the director of the March For Humanity in 2005 and most recently served as COO of New Look Skin Center, a regional leader in cosmetic medicine.
Marcell Mitchell, M.S.Ed
Mr. Mitchell joined Ascencia in 2014 and oversees Ascencia’s Coordinated Entry System (CES) function and together with his direct report, the Case Management Supervisor, oversees a case management and employment navigation team dedicated to job placement and benefits advocacy. He is also the HMIS Administrator (Homeless Management Information System) for the agency and served as Ascencia’s lead for the employment collaborative in Glendale until the Employment Navigator was hired in late 2016. Mr. Mitchell’s experience in human services dates back to 1999, serving first as a Shelter Plus Care Coordinator, Clinical Therapist and Community Support Team Supervisor in Chicago, then as a Gang Interventionist and Assistant Program Director, which included working with homeless U.S. military veterans, in Los Angeles. Mr. Mitchell holds a B.A. in History and a M.S. in Higher Education both from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. He is trained in trauma-informed care and motivational interviewing practices.
Case Management Supervisor
Marifel Sison came to Ascencia in April of 2015. She works with local hospitals to identify frequent users under the 10th Decile Project and supervises Ascencia’s case management wellness team. Since 1995, Ms. Sison has experience working with the chronically mentally ill population in both acute hospital and outpatient settings. She has a B.A. degree in Psychology from the University of California, Riverside and a M.A. degree in Psychology from Pepperdine University and is certified in Medi-Cal billing. She has done field research for the Veteran’s Administration, UCLA, Dartmouth and Aids Project Los Angeles. She cultivated a relationship with CSUN and utilizes/supervises student interns in Ascencia’s programs. She is trilingual in English, Tagalog and Spanish.
Ascencia has case managers specializing in housing, employment, medical, mental health, substance abuse and general support and resources. All Ascencia case managers use a client-centered approach to working to address client needs.
Our staff have training in the following areas:
- Adult First Aid and CPR
- Substance Abuse Counseling Certification
- Preparing SSI Disability Claims
- Domestic Violence counseling certification
- Care Transitions Intervention Coach Training
- Fair Housing/Housing Rights for People with Disabilities
- Permanent Supportive Housing Services
- Compassionate Response to Cluttering and Hoarding
- Homeless Management Information System
To speak to a case manager, please call Ascencia’s Access Center at (818) 246-7900.
Mental Health Outreach Case Manager
Mr. Hernandez joined Ascencia in 2003 and has 13 years experience in social services, with an emphasis on mental health and addiction. He currently supervises Ascencia’s Outreach program, leading outreach to support our Veterans focus and the Glendale 100,000 Homes Campaign registry. He previously served as a Full Service Partnership Case Manager for Los Angeles County and facilitated men’s self-help groups for the County’s Drug Court. Mr. Hernandez served in the US Marine Corps and was honorably discharged in 1985.
Ascencia’s outreach team goes directly to the homeless to provide help. If you see someone who needs help in the greater Glendale area, please call Alfred Hernandez at (818) 254-5885. Or you can call Ascencia’s Access Center at (818) 246-7900 and we will send an outreach case manager to the location.