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Stephanie Kahal, Executive Assistant


"We are all ordinary. We are all boring. We are all spectacular. We are all shy. We are all bold. We are all heroes. We are all helpless. It just depends on the day."
                 ~Bred Meltzer

Hello, my name is Stephanie Kahal, and I am the Executive Assistant and Clinical Coordinator at LACIA. My goal while overseeing day-to-day operations is to make the assessment process as smooth as possible for our LACIA families. I am the boss of all things dealing with the calendar and paperwork. Just to keep things interesting, I am also pursuing a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Cal State University Northridge and plan on working with students as an educational therapist. I grew up in the Washington, DC metro area and lived there until August 2019 when my crazy sister convinced me to move out to Los Angeles. It’s been a big change, to say the least. Earthquakes still freak me out, but you cannot beat the weather.


In high school, I spent a lot of time volunteering with my county’s historical society, department of archaeology, and local Teen Court. I attended The American University in DC and majored in Law, Justice, and Society. In my last semester there, I interned for the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services. I wanted to be Judge Stephanie, presiding over a juvenile court and maybe one day getting my own television show like Judge Judy (sans the frilly white collar).  While I found the juvenile system too limiting, the internship left me knowing that I wanted to work with children and adolescents in some capacity. After graduation, I worked under a Department of Justice program assisting the public with criminal justice research. After three years as a cube rat, I was accepted to the Israeli Service Corps. Living in a “mixed city,” I volunteered with students in schools, teens who were at risk, and with the elderly. It was a fantastic time in my life when I got to travel around Israel and surrounding countries and basically goof off. It was also a really important time in my life because my work for the Israeli Service Corps solidified my passion for working with youth.

When my visa expired, I reluctantly returned home to Maryland. The next few years of my life were spent working one-to-one with a middle schooler who suffered from a rare genetic disorder. We formed a special bond as I guided her through those awkward middle school years until unfortunately, she was too sick to return to school. She taught me the importance of truly appreciating the little things in life. My career continued as a paraprofessional in various middle and high schools. I supported students with autism, dyslexia, various learning disorders, and ADHD in the area of social students, reading, math, English, and science. Nothing made me happier than seeing that “ah-ha” moment in a student when a concept finally clicked.
Now that I’m happily enjoying the Golden State, I have found a home at LACIA. When I’m not working or studying, I enjoy exploring different neighborhoods in my new city, attending concerts, and traveling. I am a mom to the best fur baby in the world, a labradoodle named Hermione. Yes, after the Harry Potter character.  We at LACIA LOVE Harry Potter, and we get house points for a job well done. Or, in my case points subtracted when I accidentally ordered decaf coffee! Try to guess which house each of us belongs to—Hermione is obviously a Gryffindor! My obsessions, in no particular order, include my amazing nieces and nephews, dogs, The Muppets, anything pertaining to Maryland, Brad Meltzer novels, and live music. And just to one-up Dr. Caplan, guess how long I’ve known Dr. Kawa, (hint: almost twice as long as Julie!).



Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Justice, Law, Society

American University