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Soccer, Car Seats and Wonder Woman: Meet Miguel Rodriguez, the new Clinical Division Chief of Mental Health

Published April 17, 2019
  • Employee Spotlight
  • Adult Services
  • Mental Health Access
  • Employee Spotlight


SoCal transplant, Miguel Rodriguez, has been busy getting settled in as the new Clinical Division Chief of Adult Services, but he took a few minutes out of his marathon of a schedule to let us get to know him.

1.     Best sandwich ever. What’s on it?

“I’m not really a sandwich person, but if I am going to have one it has to be warm. A good grilled cheese with turkey and sharp cheddar is nice.”

2.     DC or Marvel Comics? Who is your favorite superhero?

“I might get myself in trouble because I don’t have a preference. If I were to choose a favorite superhero, it would be Wonder Woman. Being a dad with two daughters has opened my eyes to the need for equality. It was a powerful movie for me because it has a female lead and promotes the strength of women.”

3.     If you could have a superpower, what would it be?

“The power to heal others, not physically, but emotionally. I think often people hurt emotionally and they aren’t aware of it. Unfortunately, it often manifests in different and unhealthy ways.”

4.     What’s your million-dollar idea or best idea for an invention?

“Car seats that are built into the car, can be removed, and then reclined without waking up the child. Why isn’t there something like that already?”

“I’d also like to create a kid friendly training where kids could become therapists to help their peers, even in elementary schools. It could make getting help as normal as going to P.E. class.”

5.     When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

“I wanted to be a professional soccer player, and played all throughout high school. I like playing all kinds of sports, like soccer, softball and basketball.”

6.     If you could travel back in time, which time-period would you go to?

“I like the here and now. Despite all the difficulties we’re having, we’re progressing. People tend to have more rights and/or resources than in the past and the county, as a whole, is moving forward.”

7.     Who was your mentor or your most influential teacher?

“One of my professors from my undergraduate program at Cal-State Fullerton. He taught a class called Character and Conflict which I took as a student and was then able to co-facilitate. It helped me understand how to view therapy from the perspective of a client and as a clinician. The course allowed me to experience the healing powers of therapy and how much hurt some of us carry on a daily basis.”

8.     What are you most proud of in life?

“I have a daughter with multiple disabilities which has gifted me the ability to understand what families experience when managing someone with a disability. I believe it has allowed to become a better father, advocate, and clinician.”

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