The Children’s Clinic, “Serving Children and Their Families” (TCC), was founded in 1939 by a group of physicians and community leaders who recognized the importance of access to healthcare for all children, particularly those who are from low income families and who are at risk for health problems. Since then, TCC has grown from offering weekly well-child care to daily, full service health care with primary care services for children, adolescents and adults. TCC is known as a unique leader in the greater Long Beach community, addressing disparities in health by providing quality care for the under-served of all ages, offering them a true “medical home”.

History, Mission & Goals

Our Mission

The Children’s Clinic, “Serving Children and Their Families” (TCC) is guided by our mission “to provide innovative, integrated, quality health care that will contribute to a healthy community, focusing on those in need and working with patients and the community as partners in their overall well-being.”

Our Vision

Our Vision is of a community that is healthy for all.

Our Organizational Goals

  • To Create a Medical Home For Children, Adolescents and Adults including those with Special Health Care Needs and Chronic Diseases.
  • To Provide Direct Health Services in a Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Manner for Children and Their Families in Southern California Communities.
  • To Respond To Community – Identified Physical, Behavioral Health and Social Needs of Children and Families.
  • To Partner with Parents, Patients and the Community to Develop and Provide Health Education and Promotion.
  • To Educate Health Professionals in Training in the Medical Care of Children and Families in a Diverse Community.
  • To Educate and Advocate for Health Care Needs of Children and Families.
  • To Decrease Health Disparities as Delineated in Healthy People 2020.



Meet TCC’s Chief Executive Officer

Elisa Nicholas, MD, MSPH, Chief Executive Officer

For over 26 years, Dr. Nicholas has advocated for health care for the underserved in the local, state and national context as a leader of TCC. Dr. Nicholas has taken what was once a small, mostly volunteer-run clinic serving only children in Long Beach, California to an innovative and progressive system of nine community health centers that provide comprehensive health care services to all ages throughout greater Long Beach, including locations serving unique populations, like the Multi-Service Center for the Homeless. In addition to her role as CEO of TCC, Dr. Nicholas founded and developed several organizations in Southern California that address diverse client issues through improved housing, community health worker interventions, physician training, policy and advocacy work for cleaner air, and better access to health care. As a pediatrician, she continues to advocate for services for the disabled and is designing transitional programs for these individuals. Addressing not only the individual health issues of patients, but also the social determinants of health, Dr. Nicholas’ long-term passionate commitment to helping children and their families to lead healthier and happier lives and experience success has driven pioneering work in the area of chronic diseases, such as asthma, diabetes, obesity, and most recently trauma, toxic stress and adverse childhood events.

Meet TCC’s Executive Staff

Jina Lee Lawler, MSW, Chief Operating Officer

Ms. Lawler is responsible for all aspects of day-to-day TCC Operations, including services, program implementation, IT and facilities of the organization in accordance with the organization-approved policies, strategic plans, decisions and directives. Recently, she led the implementation and training of the EPIC Electronic Health Records system at TCC. She also has worked extensively with Mental Health America and Northeast Valley Health Corporation as a project leader to establish the Homeless Innovation Program and other resources for the homeless, including case management on mental and chronic illness. Prior to her position at TCC, she was the founding Executive Director of Moloka’i Ohana Health Care, Inc., a Federally Qualified Health Center in Hawaii. She has also worked at the American Academy of Pediatrics, providing technical assistance to pediatricians and other health professionals interested in increasing access to child health initiatives. In addition, her professional experience includes creating a thriving outpatient community health center while developing multiple social service programs for a multi-cultural population in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood. Ms. Lawler’s educational background includes a Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She received her License in Clinical Social Work in 1997, and has over 15 years of experience in health care systems, budgeting, program development, non-profit health care management, community development, and working with underinsured and insured populations both at the local and national level.


Maria Chandler, MD, MBA, Chief Medical Officer

A graduate of the University of California, Irvine (UCI) School of Medicine and Pediatric Residency Training Program, Dr. Chandler has served for nearly 24 years at TCC. She is a Diplomat of the American Board of Pediatrics and a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics. As the Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Chandler supervises the daily medical activities and growth of TCC under the direction of the Chief Executive Officer to provide quality comprehensive health care services, including homeless health, women’s health, and behavioral health. Dr. Chandler has newly implemented and expanded the Behavioral Health Program at TCC with an extensive focus on resources and training on mental health issues. Dr. Chandler has a great deal of experience leading successful health care programs throughout Southern California as she currently serves as the Chair of the Medical Economics Task Force and MD/MBA Program Advisor for the School of Medicine and Merage School of Business at the University of California, Irvine. She also offers her time to the Volunteer Clinic Faculty at U.C. Irvine’s Department of Pediatrics and Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Care. In addition, she currently serves as the elected President of the Association of MD/MBA Programs and is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Long Beach Memorial/Miller Children’s Hospital.

2016-2017 Board of Directors

Mike Van Dyke, CFP
Financial Consultant
The Shadden Group at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney

LaShell Diggs, Principal
Riley Elementary School
Long Beach Unified School District

Socheat Kuch
Business Owner

Mynor Aguirre
Pelican Co.

D’Ette Cummings

Fombe Ndiforchu, MD, MBA
Pediatric Surgeon
Cameric International Developments

Eduardo Anorga, MD
Madison Park Family Group

Rosario Farias, CPA
Holthouse, Carlin & Van Trigt

Evangelina Ramirez
Community Leader
Latinos en Accion

Catalina Cruz, CPA
Jade Range, LLC

Martha Herrera
Vice President

Stephen Romansky, MD
Pediatric Pathologist

2016-2017 Advisory Board

Ron Arias

David Armes

Ruth Ashley
Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources, LBUSD

Dave G. Carver, CLU
Business Owner
Carver Financial

Gene Johnson, CPM
Founder and President
GJ Property Services

John W. Humphrey, PhD
Demographics Expert
Diverse Consulting

Don Knabe
Supervisor, 4th District
Los Angeles County

James R. Kuhl
City of Long Beach Environmental Services Bureau

Sally Lane
Director of Ambulatory Operations
Miller Children’s Hospital

Mel Marks, MD
Chief Administrative Officer
Miller Children’s Hospital

Teresa Mosqueda
Donor Relations Officer

California Community Foundation

Robin Paterson
Senior Vice President
American Business Bank

Lorie Pickens
Real Estate Asset Management
Watson Land Company

Suellen Skow
Long Beach Memorial Medical Center

Chris Steinhauser
Superintendent of Schools
Long Beach Unified School District

Song Tan, MD

Kevin Torres
Vice President of Information Services

Long Beach Memorial Medical Center

Susan E. Anderson Wise, Esq.