KCLA Updated Team Photo


Dr. Steven L. Mandel

Founder & President

Dr. Steven Mandel is an internationally-recognized expert & pioneer in the use of ketamine infusion therapy to treat mental health disorders & chronic pain. Dr. Mandel has more than 40 years of experience utilizing ketamine as a board-certified anesthesiologist. He also earned his master’s degree in psychology. He is the founder & president of Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles, a leading ketamine infusion therapy clinic in Southern California. Dr. Mandel is also founder and first president of ASKP.


Sam Mandel

Cofounder & Chief Executive Officer

Sam Mandel, Cofounder & Chief Executive Officer, is a lifelong mental health advocate and entrepreneur. Sam cofounded Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles (KCLA) with his father, Dr. Steven L. Mandel, in 2014 and currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer. He has grown KCLA to be one of the most successful and well-respected Ketamine Infusion Therapy clinics in the world.



Dr. Suzie Dupée


Dr. Suzie Dupée is a triple board-certified psychiatrist with over 30 years of experience. Skilled in a variety of fields of psychiatry, Dr. Dupée maintains her board certifications in Psychiatry, Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, and Forensic Psychiatry. She has worked as an expert witness for over 20 years on panels for the Los Angeles Superior Court and as an expert medical reviewer for the Medical Board of California. Dr. Dupée has been retained by both plaintiffs and defense in thousands of legal cases for civil suits and has testified in hundreds of legal cases. She is well-known for her extensive experience in evaluating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Dr. Dupée graduated from medical school at the University of Queensland in Australia and has worked in multiple hospitals in Melbourne, Brisbane, Los Angeles (Cedars Sinai), San Diego (UCSD), and New York City (Bellevue & Kirby). After more than 20 years of managing her private practice in Manhattan Beach, Dr. Dupée decided to join our team at Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles because of her interest in evidence-based, effective treatments. She feels the innovative advances that KCLA offers will further enhance the quality of life for patients with difficult-to-treat psychiatric conditions. At KCLA, Dr. Dupée provides medication management, liaises with our patients’ treating mental health professionals, oversees the psychiatric aspects of ketamine infusions, and will soon provide consultations and mappings for Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), a safe and effective FDA-approved treatment for a variety of many mental health conditions; depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety disorders, PTSD, and others have all been proven to respond to TMS.

In Dr. Dupée’s spare time, she enjoys traveling, jogging on the beach with her dog, spending quality time with her children, cooking, and attending U2 concerts.

Dr. Peyman Tashkandi

Director of Psychiatry

Dr. Peyman Tashkandi is double board-certified in General Adult and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Dr. Tashkandi has spent his career exploring the inner workings of the mind and is especially interested in the relationship between psychiatry, medicine, and the human experience. He pursued a bachelor’s degree in sociology and premedical studies at UCLA, where he graduated with honors. While in college, Dr. Tashkandi joined the Persian American Cancer Institute (PACI) and later became their spokesperson. He obtained his master’s degree in Medical Sciences from the Western University of Health Sciences in California in 2012 when he began writing what would become an award-winning chapter in The Textbook of Nanoneuroscience and Nanoneruosurgery.

In 2012, Dr. Tashkandi attended Medical School at the Western University of Health Sciences and graduated in 2016. Upon graduation, he started his residency in general adult psychiatry. Upon completion in 2019, he went on to complete his fellowship training in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the USC Keck School of Medicine, where he served as an education chief and helped care for the underserved population in the greater Los Angeles area. While there, he gained deep experience treating complex, challenging cases of numerous psychiatric disorders, with added emphasis on eating disorders.

Dr. Tashkandi is currently a part-time clinical faculty member of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the USC Keck School of Medicine. He participates in teaching and part-time patient care. His philosophy is to use evidence-based medicine and a whole-person approach in treating patients, utilizing medication management, psychotherapy, and education. Dr. Tashkandi is passionately interested in educating the public about mental health issues and is working to raise awareness of mental health concerns affecting all communities. The opportunity to care for patients at Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles fits perfectly with Dr. Tashkandi’s passion for comprehensive, evidence-based, effective modalities to provide patients with the best chance of relief.

In Tashkandi's spare time, he enjoys tennis, playing guitar, reading, and spending quality time with family and friends.



Director of Operations

Angel, Director of Operations, is a graduate of San Jose State University where she received her bachelor's degree. With over 25 years of business management and medical administrative experience, Angel brings strong operational capabilities to Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles and ensures the clinic runs smoothly. Angel joined KCLA in 2016 and maintains the integrity of our daily operations. Angel grew up with a strong work ethic, having worked in her family’s business since the age of 13, and entering the world of mentorship and management by age 18, her diverse career makes her an excellent leader for our team and our patients. Originally from Northern California, Angel enjoys all Southern California has to offer and when not working, she spends her time at the beach, enjoying family and friends, and traveling with her boyfriend of over 20 years. LEARN MORE


Office Manager

Banksy, Office Manager, is a cockapoo who earned his master’s degree in human resource management at Bark Academy and graduated with honors. Banksy joined the Mandel Family in 2012 and decided to try his paw in the family business at Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles as office manager at the height of the pandemic in April, 2020. Entering the company during one of the most difficult times in its history was no small task, but Banksy was ready to sink his teeth into a new challenge. He has always been passionate about mental health, realizing the importance of mindset and setting after being separated from his mother and siblings at a very young age. Banksy has done an amazing job at bringing comfort and hope to the entire KCLA team and our patients. He is also very active in the art world, but prefers to not talk about his exploits in that arena; you may be familiar with some of his work, which is recognized around the world. When he isn't managing people, Banksy enjoys belly rubs, playing fetch, long walks, and eating treats. LEARN MORE

Advanced Providers


Physician Assistant

Conor, Physician Assistant, received a bachelor’s degree from Boston University where he graduated cum laude with a double-major in Neuroscience and Psychology. He received a master’s degree from Long Island University. Conor has a longtime fascination with the mind and how the brain works. His education provided him many unique opportunities to participate in research and lab projects that offered him firsthand insight into the physiology of the brain. Conor was actively involved with a student suicide prevention organization, volunteered as a mentor for children and teens with mental health disorders, and as an in-home therapy assistant for families struggling to function. Conor joined Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles in 2019 and is a fully licensed medical provider. Each day he partners with Dr. Mandel to oversee infusions and lead the clinical care team. His knowledge, empathy, and personal connection with patients makes him an invaluable part of the clinic’s team. Conor enjoys weightlifting, relaxing at the beach, playing volleyball, attending concerts, and traveling. LEARN MORE


Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner

Melanie, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from California State University, San Marcos. Her professional experience includes working as a Registered Nurse for six years at Huntington Hospital and UCLA, prior to obtaining her Master’s degree in Nursing from Maryville University. Melanie’s interest in psychiatric medicine came from both personal experience and the unmet need she witnessed first hand in hospitals. Psychedelic medicine sparked her interest when she learned about the clinical trials being conducted through the Psychedelic Studies Initiative at UCLA. Melanie stays up to date with the ongoing research surrounding psychedelic medicines and is optimistic about their potential for treating various mental health conditions. Melanie is passionate about helping her patients overcome the stigma surrounding mood disorders and raising awareness of alternative therapies like ketamine. KCLA is the perfect fit for Melanie because every day she gets to witness the profound benefits ketamine infusions have on patients. Born and raised in Southern California, Melanie enjoys spending time with family and friends, traveling to new countries, and playing with her three dogs Luna, Cooper, and Zoe. LEARN MORE



Licensed Vocational Nurse

Denisse, Nurse, worked in the medical field for seven years at the USC Cancer Center before becoming a full time nurse at Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles in 2017. She was inspired to become a nurse by her mother who provided care to the elderly. Denisse is known for the kind and compassionate way she cares for patients. Coming from a large family, she helped raise younger brothers, nieces, and nephews and was happiest when she was taking care of others. A native of Los Angeles, Denisse is bilingual and speaks both Spanish and English. She is passionate about the arts and dabbles in drama classes. Her husband is a chef and makes her yummy lunches to bring to work everyday. In her free time, she likes to play with her dogs Penny and Worf, read graphic novels, go to concerts, watch movies, and spend time with family and friends. LEARN MORE


Charge Nurse (RN)

Kevin, Registered Nurse, joined KCLA in early 2021 shortly after completing his Associates Degree of Nursing (ADN) at Los Angeles Harbor College. A jack of all trades and natural leader, Kevin thrived throughout his schooling but found obstetrics, critical care, and mental health to be most intriguing. His effortless ability to connect with patients on a personal level distinguishes him among the most experienced of nurses; he is authentic, warm, and incredibly compassionate. Kevin’s excitement for psychedelic medicine happened spontaneously after learning of ketamine treatment for depression through a close friend. Since joining KCLA, his dedication to destigmatizing mental health and delivering superior patient care has only grown. Outside of work, most of Kevin’s free time is spent with his wife and their two young daughters. Together they enjoy escape rooms, Dodgers games, home improvements, and the occasional day trip or weekend getaway. LEARN MORE


Registered Nurse

Victoria, Registered Nurse, graduated Cum Laude with her bachelor’s degree of science in nursing from the American University of Health Sciences, shortly after completing her bachelor’s in psychology at UC Santa Barbara. During her coursework she was a member of The Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing and received recognition for her leadership as a peer mentor. Victoria gained clinical experience as a behavioral therapist working with youth afflicted with ADD, ADHD and autism, and furthermore through her contributions at a private pain management practice Inspired by individualized patient care and with a fervent curiosity for holistic medicine, Victoria’s liking to mental health took shape. Her excitement for ketamine and alternative treatments for mood disorders runs deep, making KCLA a perfect fit. Victoria is passionate about the transformative potential of ketamine infusion therapy and addressing mood disorders through an alternative lens. When she’s not in-clinic, Victoria enjoys staying active through yoga and the many hiking trails LA has to offer. Born and raised in Southern California, she finds happiness in nature, water sports, traveling, live music and her corgi-baby, Peaches. LEARN MORE


Registered Nurse

Julian, Registered Nurse, holds two bachelor’s degrees, graduating cum laude from California State University, Northridge and Vanguard University of Southern California with degrees in Nursing and Psychology. Julian has worked in various industries where he gained knowledge and experience in business, operations, and sales. During that time, Julian recognized the massive need for a reform in mental health treatments, and learned about the cutting edge work being done at Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles. For two years he worked to earn his nursing degree with the intention of joining KCLA to help liberate people from debilitating mental illnesses. When Julian isn’t working he can be found playing pickleball and tennis or escaping to the local mountains for long hikes. As a foodie he enjoys trying new cuisines, traveling with his girlfriend of 10 years, and cuddling with their dog-ghter, Harmony. LEARN MORE


Registered Nurse

Edith, Registered Nurse, holds a bachelor’s degree of science in nursing from National University where she graduated Cum Laude, and a bachelor’s in financial services from San Diego State University. After several years of lackluster work in finance, it was Edith’s passion for healing and serving that led her to medicine. For years she served at Garfield Medical Center as an RN where she thrived in rehabilitation, pediatrics, oncology, med-surg, and outpatient surgery. Edith’s interest in mental health stems from her loved ones who have battled depression, as well as her innate aptitude to serve those most in need. She is an advocate of alternative medicine and adjunctive treatment options such as ketamine. Edith brings a genuine passion for patient care to KCLA where she remains grateful to play a part in patients’ healing journeys and work towards normalizing mental health conversation. A Southern California native, Edith spends her free time practicing yoga, backpacking through nature, and enjoying concerts, with the company of friends and family. When she’s not bedside delivering patient care, Edith remains passionate about health, fitness, self betterment and psychosomatics. LEARN MORE

Administrative Team


Project Manager

Alyssa, Project Manager, graduated from California State University Long Beach, where she received a bachelor's degree in human development with a double minor in psychology and child development. Alyssa, one of KCLA’s first employees, joined Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles in 2016. She currently serves as Project Manager where she handles a wide variety of projects and assists KCLA’s C-Suite executives. She is passionate about helping others, and has volunteered with several nonprofit organizations, including, Southern California Foster Family & Adoption Agency, homeless shelters, and has worked with middle schoolers struggling with mental health. Originally from Palo Alto, Alyssa participated in competitive gymnastics for ten years and enjoys staying active. When not working, she travels, spends time with friends, listens to live music, enjoys working out, spending time outdoors hiking, reading, and relaxing at home watching movies. LEARN MORE


Patient Care Coordinator

William, Patient Care Coordinator, graduated from California State University Los Angeles with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He completed his degree while working in several different industries including healthcare, customer service, and music. Prior to transferring to CSULA, William attended Los Angeles Community College where he became part of the first group to be awarded a spot in the President's Scholar program. A jack of all trades, William is often the first voice people hear when they call us, he assists the patient check-in process, manages social media, and supports a variety of other projects in the clinic. Born and raised in California, William spends his free time working on video projects, cooking, drawing, and playing with his cats. LEARN MORE


Patient Care Coordinator

Juleny, Patient Care Coordinator, is a graduate of UCLA where she received a bachelor’s degree in Evolutionary Anthropology and Global Health. Juleny has always had a passion for the healthcare field and was heavily involved in working within various hospitals, labs, and clinical settings. Prior to joining Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles, she worked in the field of Optometry as an Optician assisting in both medical procedures and administrative work. She has maintained her BLS/CPR certification since 2016 and is bi-lingual (English and Spanish). Her inspiration to work in mental health began after her internship at UCLA Ronald Reagan Hospital, in which she found a sense of achievement in and fondness for caring for others on a personal level and helping those in their most vulnerable state. Juleny not only possesses excellent communication and administrative skills, but her compassion for our patient population is apparent with every interaction. An Inglewood native, Juleny loves to spend time with her friends and family, participate in volunteer work in her spare time, and try new hobbies. LEARN MORE


Administrative Assistant

Camila, Administrative Assistant, graduated summa cum laude with her bachelor's degree in Sociology from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. While completing her education, she worked in a variety of fields including customer service, social services, and education. Her interest in mental health began at the age of 15 as she was exposed to the overwhelming stigmatization of mental health and the underwhelming amount of support available to students at her school. After learning about Ketamine Infusion Therapy and its fast-acting results, she knew Ketamine Clinics Los Angeles would be a great fit. Camila is often the first person patients speak with on the phone and she is always happy to greet patients with a warm welcome as soon as they enter the clinic. Born and raised in Westchester, Camila enjoys spending time with family, painting, watching movies with her cat Potato, and trying out new restaurants. LEARN MORE

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