Maribel Avina

Maribel is a Coachella Valley native and graduate of Coachella Valley High School. She is a Certified Medical Assistant and began her career at JFK Memorial Hospital when she was just 16 years old! Maribel is excited about her position at VIM because she gets to help people and the community as well. Interesting thing about Maribel, she is a volunteer fire fighter for the City of Coachella! Maribel has responsibility for the front office, dealing with the public, volunteers and patients, as well as being our Volunteer Coordinator.


Lesdy Medina

Lesdy is a native Valley resident having grown up in Thermal and becoming a medical assistant, and later, a phlebotomist. She plans to become a nurse and wants to stay in the Coachella Valley where she feels she is “at home”. Lesdy says she is a “home body” and prefers to stay at home than to go out. She enjoys being around and with her family, and likes to bake when she has the time. Lesdy came to VIM as a volunteer initially, before becoming a medical assistant and returning for her externship. She has worked in both our front office, greeting patients and scheduling appointments, and in our back office working directly with patients and their physicians. Lesdy is now a part-time outreach worker helping to promote wellness in the community and increasing awareness of Volunteers in Medicine.


Carolina Lua

Carolina Lua has been a Certified Medical Assistant since 2015 having worked for several years in a local urgent care before joining our clinical are team in the summer of 2021. Carolina works closely with our Clinical Care Coordinator and other volunteers to facilitate timely medical visits with medical residents. She works directly with patients and also interacts with medical providers, medical referrals, ancillary services and pharmacies. Carolina is a bilingual Spanish speaker and enjoys the opportunity to give back to the community!


Mica Mendez

Mica began working at CVVIM in August of 2019 as our Front Office Coordinator where, with a group of 20+ volunteers (many of whom are constantly changing) she has responsibility for ensuring every patient is treated with compassion and professionalism from the moment they first call or enter our clinic. She and her volunteers are usually the first and last workers our patients see, and Mica makes sure they leave feeling better than when they came in. Mica is a Valley native and a former certified Medical Assistant/Phlebotomist who is excited to be in working in a healthcare setting once again, after leaving the Valley for a short residency in Kansas.

Michelli Perez

Michelli is a certified Dental Assistant and licensed X-Ray Technician for nearly 20 years. A longtime Valley resident, Michelli enjoys working with patients and especially enjoys making a difference in the lives of our CVVIM patients! She works closely with our volunteer dentists to bring smiles to everyone she sees!

Maria Anaya

Maria joined CVVIM in July of 2019 in a temporary, grant-funded position to finalize and implement prior efforts to improve and increase our patient’s needs as they relate to social determinants of health. She was responsible for streamlining our assessment process, identifying community resources, and training volunteers to continue the program after funding for her position ends. Maria is a Valley resident and has her Master’s degree in Public Health. She is pursuing a medical degree to enable her to continue to serve her community.


Gloria Chagoya

Gloria worked in public health with the County of Riverside for more than 20 years before becoming a volunteer at CVVIM. After retiring, Gloria knew she didn’t want to stay home when there were so many organizations and people who needed help, so with her medical background as a Medical Assistant, she became a back office volunteer in 2018. When an opportunity arose with CVVIM to work with high-risk diabetic patients to improve their health, Gloria was excited to be chosen. Now she provides care management to an average of 30 to 50 patients at any time, coordinating their health management with other staff and medical providers. Her personality is perfectly suited to offer support, encouragement and motivation to her patients, even when she has to be the firm, but caring, hand.


David Stern

With more than 30 years experience, David has led the planning, creative development and implementation of marketing campaigns for products and services across many categories and communication platforms. David has
developed and executed sales-generating campaigns in categories such as retail, packaged goods, financial, quick service restaurants, fitness, hardware retail, computer corporate and education sales, Information Technology, video gaming, theme parks, toys, data management software solutions, and the TV station industry. These days, David provides marketing and communication services to Coachella Valley nonprofits.

David is a leader in results-driven marketing. He has led campaigns that increased revenues for McDonald’s, Discover Card, Sea World and Busch Gardens, US West, Wendy’s, Arby’s, Ace, Van Kampen, Sun-Times, Kraft,
Turtle Wax, Illinois Lottery, Ohio Art, and Ultra Diamonds. With wide-ranging experience covering consumer-based communication, business-to-business, event marketing, promotion, retail, direct response, retail point-of-sale merchandising, web communication and Social Media, David has worked at Chicago Advertising Agencies; J. Walter Thompson, Foote, Cone & Belding, DDB Needham and the Coachella Valley’s CBS affiliate.

Catrina Grijalva

Catrina has a very interesting position at Volunteers in Medicine, providing direct patient care and assisting our dental providers as Dental Assistant, as well as keeping our Front Office running smoothly. As Front Office Coordinator she is responsible for training and supervising all of our front office volunteers who determine patient eligibility, schedule patient visits and greet all patients and the public who visit the Clinic.