Our Board of Directors are elected by the general membership in an annual election, usually held in November. All officers must be members in good standing and are elected to serve two-year terms. The Board meets once a month to supervise the affairs of SDAS between monthly meetings. The Board secures guest speakers, records lectures, creates the bi-monthly newsletter The Uranian, maintains member records, manages the organization’s finances, publicizes the meetings, and organizes our two big annual events: our summer Astro-Bazaar fundraiser and our Winter Solstice party each December. You can contact the board through our online form.
Melissa LaFara, President
A few call me Melissa, but most call me Mel. I’m an astrologer, tarot consultant, and musician originally from Florida who has been traveling the path of the stars since 2009. When I’m not creating beautiful music you can find me on my weekly astro podcast called Energetic Principles; where I host guest interviews with inspiring astrologers and metaphysical practitioners each week. I specialize in consultation work, astrological forecasting, tarot correspondences and mundane astrology. I frequently do events in Southern California and have an active Instagram feed – so to find out more please visit http://www.energeticprinciples.com/
Catherine Boyer, Vice President
Bio coming soon
Kathy Costello, Treasurer
Bio coming soon
Jim Hennum, Publicity Director
I began studying astrology in 1988 and began practicing professionally in 1993. I love horary astrology and am fascinated by mundane astrology. I was lucky enough to write a syndicated monthly sun sign column which appeared in, among other places, Vision magazine. In a previous life (!) I worked for 9 years in the newspaper industry, at the San Diego Tribune and the Los Angeles Times.
I served for 14 years off and on as Director of Publicity for SDAS, and Director of Publicity and Marketing for the California Institute for Open Studies (the former Cadent Cross Institute). A typical Sagittarius, there have been many other arrows I have shot and briefly followed in the work arena. I have my level 1 certification in Reiki and look to explore more modalities of energy healing including Burt Hellinger’s Family Systems work with an astrological basis.
Francesca Smith, Newsletter Director – Editor
Let’s see…I was born and raised in NYC, and was a juvenile actor (not to be confused with juvenile delinquent.. Oh go ahead, confuse it.) I was trained at Circle in the Square theatre, and am currently a member of the Actor’s Alliance. I got accepted at Juilliard but came out here for what I thought was a terribly good reason at the time (could see myself 40 years old and still living with mommy and daddy). Graduated from USIU’s performing arts school out here but didn’t pursue acting at that time.
I have been working in the Graphic Design/Marketing industry. I started studying astrology under Hugh Martin about 20 years ago maybe? That would be 20 years ago, BC (before computers). I am by no means as adept at it as I should be after all that time, but I do remain constantly amazed by its validity.
Simone Butler, Recording Secretary
Simone Butler is an intuitive yet practical astrologer with over 30 years of experience. In addition to her consulting practice, she has taught many classes and lectured widely. Simone produced the daily forecasts for the Starscroll for many years, as well as lunar forecasts for Tarot.com, and is a regular contributor to The Mountain Astrologer.
Astro Feng Shui, the system Simone developed, combines the ancient arts of astrology and feng shui into a user-friendly system. Her book, Astro Feng Shui: Making Magic in Your Home and Life is available on amazon.com. Simone writes entertaining bi-monthly blogs at www.astroalchemy.com.
Maria Gonzalez, Membership Director
I became interested in astrology while finishing my bachelor degree in science in 1985, when my genetics professor convinced me to take her astrology classes. I was surprised and fascinated to find such a strong correlation between my life experiences and astronomical events. Although I eventually completed a PhD in cellular biology with honors and dedicated my life to research science, my interest in Astrology persisted. For years I pursued astrology as a hobby, practicing with friends and family members.
I started practicing astrology professionally in 2012, and I enjoy helping my clients understand themselves better, guiding them during important events in their life, and helping them to break old patterns and belief to find healing. My practice includes natal chart readings, relationship astrology, career guidance, relocation, solar returns, and evolutionary astrology.
I am also very interested in the science of healing and studied Quantum Healing hypnotherapy and herbalism at the Self-Healing school in San Diego, as well as Soul Memory Discovery, True Healing, and Reiki levels I and II.
I am very happy to serve as Membership Director for the San Diego Astrological Society. I look forward to serving and communicating with our members to ensure that each member feels heard and valued.
Dave Dean, Corresponding Secretary
I became a serious student of Astrology and the Tarot while residing in LA during the “Harmonic Convergence” of 1987.
Though always an ‘A’ student, and despite having read dozens of great Astrology classics, I struggled for decades with the practical application of Astrological principles. In other words, I would sit and stare at a chart, and it would rarely speak back to me, or even blink.
Finally in 2005, I met my Mentor, Astrologer Diane Ronngren. Ever since then I have been doing charts like gangbusters. Sometimes, all it takes is one helping hand to lift us onto our desired path.
I am most intrigued by and experienced with the Archetypal, Psychological and Relocational schools of Astrology. I am also a singer, a songwriter, a poet, a romantic and a mystic (Venus trine Neptune).