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  Addressing Communication Barriers When Serving Crime Victims
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  Addressing the Holistic Needs of Crime Victims
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  Addressing the Legal Needs of Crime Victims
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  Build Your Own Body of Evidence-Based Knowledge
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  Building Resiliency within Child Abuse Organizations
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  Challenges and Opportunities for Supporting Nontraditional Victims
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  Child Victims: Providing Effective Rights Enforcement Representation
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  Developing an Effective Multidisciplinary Team
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  Elder Abuse in the LGBTQ Community
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  Engaging Survivors in Combating Human Trafficking
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  Human Trafficking in Rural Communities
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  Impact of Crime Scene Clean Up
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  Improving Federal Agency Response to Sexual Violence in Indian Country
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  Lessons Learned From Mass Violence
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  Postconviction Exonerations and Victim Assistance
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  Providing Appropriate Support for Military Victims of Sexual Assault
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  Responding to Confidential Victim Disclosures on a College Campus
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  Serving Trafficking Victims in Immigrant Communities
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  Using Volunteers Effectively
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Guest Host Biographies

OVC Web Forum Guest Host sessions offer an impressive roster of experts discussing best practices for a wide variety of victim issues. You can read about the guest hosts here. For more information, questions, or comments about the sessions, send an e-mail to OVCproviderforum@ncjrs.gov.

To view a biography, click on the guest host's name below. To learn more about previous years’ guest hosts, visit the Guest Host Biographies Archive.

Current Guest Hosts
Past Guest Hosts


Current Guest Hosts

Michelle Harkey

February 2016-Scheduled for 2/10/16
Topic: Outreach and Response to Teen Victims of Dating Violence

Michelle HarkeyMs. Michelle Harkey is the founder and CEO of Stars Mentoring Services, LLC, which provides therapeutic mentoring and victim services to at-risk youth, as well as crime victims and their families. She has been a victim service provider since 2002, working in various states across the country addressing issues of domestic violence, sexual assault, and at-risk youth populations.

Ms. Harkey has developed successful partnerships with faith-based groups and effective relationships with nonprofit boards and other violence prevention organizations across the Nation. These partnerships have successfully disseminated messages to communities and victims about youth violence, including dating violence, sexual assault, and bullying. She has sat on many human trafficking and dating violence expert panels.

Ms. Harkey is a member of the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress and is currently pursuing her Doctorate in Forensic Psychology.


Keisha Varnell

February 2016-Scheduled for 2/10/16
Topic: Outreach and Response to Teen Victims of Dating Violence

Photo of Keisha VarnellKeisha Varnell is the Director of Interpersonal Violence Prevention Programs at Jackson State University. Ms. Varnell has been working in the field of interpersonal violence for over 12 years, and has facilitated many speaking engagements and training sessions on domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking, diversity, and LGBTQ issues. She serves as chair of the University S.M.A.R.T (Sexual Misconduct/Assault Response Team), charged to develop campus-wide sexual assault and interpersonal violence policies, trainings, and programs. Ms. Varnell is a member of the VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) Campus Consortium through the Institutions of Higher Learning in Mississippi. She is an advisor for the Black Women’s Blueprint Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the first of its kind to focus on rape and sexual assault and Black women in the United States. Prior to her work in higher education, Ms. Varnell was the Teen Dating Violence Program Manager for the Mississippi Coalition Against Domestic Violence for 7 years where she chaired a state-wide campus task force. Ms. Varnell holds a Master’s Degree in Public Health in Health Education and Promotion and is certified as an Interpersonal Violence Prevention Education Specialist.


Past Guest Hosts

Jessica Alas
08/12/15 online discussion cohost
Topic: Addressing the Legal Needs of Crime Victims

Jessica Alas has been an attorney with Lone Star Legal Aid in Houston, Texas, since 2009, and is currently the Managing Attorney for the Crime Victims Unit. She also serves as the Project Director for the Wraparound Victim Legal Assistance Network, which is a demonstration project funded by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office for Victims of Crime. The project’s goal is to create a collaborative network of legal service providers who will provide free, wraparound, holistic legal services to crime victims. Prior to joining Lone Star Legal Aid, Ms. Alas was an Equal Justice Works Fellow at the Montgomery County Women’s Center in Conroe, Texas, where she worked to improve access to the civil court system for victims of domestic abuse and sexual assault through an assisted pro se program focused on family law issues. Ms. Alas received a juris doctorate from the College of Law at Loyola University in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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Lindy Aldrich
09/16/15 online discussion cohost
Topic: Responding to Confidential Victim Disclosures on a College Campus

Lindy Aldrich, Esq., is Deputy Director at the Victim Rights Law Center’s (VRLC) Boston, MA office. She manages the daily activities of VRLC and the Boston office’s staff attorneys who represent hundreds of sexual assault victims throughout Massachusetts in a wide range of legal areas, including education, privacy, safety, immigration, and federal and state government benefits. Ms. Aldrich works to ensure that VRLC’s sexual assault victim clients‐‐almost half of whom are under the age of 24‐‐stay their educational course. She advocates for the victim’s safety, housing, employment, scholarships, and extracurricular activities. As a staff member on VRLC’s national Office of Violence Against Women’s Training and Technical Assistance grant, Ms. Aldrich trains around the country on Title IX and Campus Sexual Assault Policies and Response topics. She conducts consultations and trainings with state and national agencies, universities, and other legal service providers. She has been a Resource Team member and trainer for the Office on Violence Against Women Campus Program Training and Technical Assistance Institute since 2010, and a presenter for the Project STOP NOW! conference for campus administrators from historically black colleges and universities. Ms. Aldrich collaborates with the Clery Center for Security on Campus as a Title IX expert for webinars and conferences. Ms. Aldrich holds a B.A. in Communication Advertising from Florida State University, and a J.D. from the Suffolk University Law School.

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Rebecca Bender
01/28/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Engaging Survivors in Combatting Human Trafficking

Rebecca Bender is a survivor of sex trafficking and an advocate for eradicating modern-day slavery. In 2014, she founded Rebecca Bender Ministries, a nonprofit, faith-based organization that provides direct services to victims of sex trafficking living in rural communities that focus on deeper levels of healing, as well as community training, curricula development, and consultant services for safe home development and nongovernmental organizations.

Ms. Bender is the author of "Roadmap to Redemption," a workbook for survivors, and "Red Flags," a brochure used nationally to help prevent sex trafficking among domestic youth. She has created trainings for a variety of service providers, including child welfare, juvenile justice, law enforcement, medical professionals, district attorneys, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Ms. Bender is a member of the Survivor Leader Institute and National Survivor Network. She is the recipient of the 2014 Female Overcomer Award and the 2013 Unlikely Hero Award. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Jean Bruggeman, Esq.
01/28/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Engaging Survivors in Combatting Human Trafficking

Jean Bruggeman currently serves as a Human Trafficking Fellow with the Office for Victims of Crime within the US Department of Justice. She supports OVC’s efforts to improve and expand access to legal and social services for crime victims, provides training and technical assistance to service providers and government agencies nationwide, and supports OVC’s intergovernmental efforts to improve services for victims of human trafficking.

Jean has 15 years of victim services experience and expertise in nonprofit management, language access, immigration, human trafficking and domestic violence. She has developed comprehensive legal and social services programs for survivors, provided direct legal representation to survivors, authored training resources, developed an interpreter service to ensure access to legal services in the District of Columbia, and served as the Interim Executive Director of a nonprofit in Washington, DC. She is a graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center and Bryn Mawr College, and is a member of the DC and Maryland (inactive) bar associations. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Jennifer Burkmire
02/25/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Developing an Effective Multidisciplinary Team

Jennifer Burkmire is an advocate for children and a contract consultant for nonprofit organizations that provide social services. She is a trained child forensic interviewer and has 11 years of experience in coordinating, facilitating, and training multidisciplinary teams. Ms. Burkmire is a presenter and trainer on issues of resilience and the Adverse Childhood Experiences Study, through the Alaska Children’s Trust’s "Alaska Resilience Initiative." She serves on the federally mandated Alaska Citizen Review Panel—evaluating child protection systems within the state of Alaska—and is active in communitywide efforts to promote the well-being and safety of children in Alaska’s Matanuska-Susitna Borough.

Ms. Burkmire previously served as the executive director of The Children’s Place Child Advocacy Center (CAC) in Alaska and as the board chair of the Alaska Children’s Alliance, where she assisted the statewide group of 10 CACs in achieving chapter accreditation by the National Children’s Alliance (NCA). She also led The Children’s Place CAC and its associated multidisciplinary team to NCA CAC accreditation in 2005 and 2010. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Sarah Collins

11/17/15 Online Discussion Cohost
Topic: Improving Federal Agency Response to Sexual Violence in Indian Country

Sarah Collins is an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota. She has worked in that capacity since October 2010 and prosecutes violent crimes occurring on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. As an enrolled member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, she takes great pride in protecting crime victims on Pine Ridge. Prior to joining the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Ms. Collins was a prosecutor for 9 years with the Adams County District Attorney’s Office in Colorado. She started as a deputy district attorney prosecuting misdemeanor and traffic offenses, became a senior trial deputy prosecuting major felonies, and ultimately served as a chief trial deputy supervising trial attorneys.

Ms. Collins serves as a member of the National Coordination Committee on the American Indian/Alaska Native SANE-SART Initiative. She completed her undergraduate studies at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, and received her law degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

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Keri Darling
05/05/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Building Your Own Body of Evidence-Based Knowledge

Keri Darling founded and currently serves as the Director/Trainer of DVAS, Deaf Vermonters Advocacy Services, which serves Deaf, hard of hearing, late-deafened, and deaf-blind women, men, and children who are victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. In 2001, DVAS was recognized at the Vermont Crime Victim's Rights week awards ceremony, Victims' Voices: Silent No More, for providing exceptional help to service providers with trainings on how to better communicate with and serve deaf victims. DVAS was also recognized by National Deaf Women United in recognition of outstanding services to the Deaf community in Vermont. Ms. Darling was formerly the chair of the Justice for Deaf Victims National Coalition Advisory Council and was Vice President of Deaf Women United.

Ms. Darling has extensive experience in developing  training curricula that reflect best practices when serving Deaf or hard-of-hearing victims and survivors. She has experience delivering hundreds of trainings and workshops on a national, state, and local level; developing a variety of evaluations incorporating skills, knowledge, and best practices; developing needs assessments; providing technical assistance for specialized program development; and participating in coordinated community response teams sharing her Deaf perspective.

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Krista Flannigan, J.D.

10/15/15 online discussion cohost
Topic:Lessons Learned From Mass Violence

Krista Flannigan, J.D., is an attorney, educator, speaker, and advocate experienced in emergency response and management, media relations, community collaboration, and program development. Dr. Flannigan has trained nationally on coordinated community response for victims of mass tragedy, high profile trials, and on the impact of mass tragedy on victims and communities. Dr. Flannigan and a colleague wrote two guidebooks and developed a training video about community response to victims of high profile mass tragedy trials. They also co-authored a book, Hope Gets the Last Word, depicting lessons learned as they journeyed alongside those recovering from tragedy.

Dr. Flannigan was a victim services consultant for Jefferson County in response to the Columbine High School shooting. She previously served as co-director for the Colorado Oklahoma Resource Council, a community-based group created to oversee a collaborative effort to identify and coordinate available resources for the survivors and families of the victims of the Oklahoma City bombing while they attended the bombing trials in Denver. Dr. Flannigan has worked with OVC and the Centers for Disease Control to develop a victim assistance response to biological and chemical terrorist attacks. She also provided services to families of the September 11 tragedies and offered training and consulting to other professionals providing services. In addition, Dr. Flannigan was involved in the victim and media response during the Aurora, Colorado theater shooting.

Dr. Flannigan is currently the director of the Institute for Crime Victim Research and Policy at Florida State University’s College of Criminology. The goal of the Institute is to collaborate with victim services professionals and ultimately provide policy and practice recommendations that are based upon need and the best available research and evaluation evidence. She also teaches classes in the university’s College of Criminology and Human Sciences. In addition, Dr. Flannigan served as an advisor to OVC in the development and implementation of the Helping Victims of Mass Violence and Terrorism: Planning, Response, Recovery, and Resources toolkit.

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Meg Garvin

08/12/15 online discussion cohost
Topic: Addressing the Legal Needs of Crime Victims

Meg Garvin, M.A., J.D., is the Executive Director of the National Crime Victim Law Institute and a clinical professor of law at Lewis & Clark Law School. She is recognized as an expert on victims’ rights and has testified before Congress and state legislatures on the current status of victim law. In August 2014, Ms. Garvin was appointed to the Victims Advisory Group of the United States Sentencing Commission. During 2013 and 2014, she served on the Victim Services Subcommittee of the Response to Adult Sexual Assault Crime Panel analyzing the military’s response to sexual violence. Ms. Garvin is a board member of SurvJustice, a national nonprofit organization responding to sexual violence on campus, and an advisory board member for the Red Lodge Legal Services Program. Previously, she served as co-chair of the American Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section Victims Committee and as co-chair of the Oregon Attorney General’s Crime Victims’ Rights Enforcement Task Force. She was also a member of the Legislative & Public Policy Committee of the Oregon Attorney General’s Sexual Assault Task Force and on the board of directors for the National Organization for Victim Assistance. Ms. Garvin is the recipient of the 2012 Crime Victims First-Stewart Family Outstanding Community Service Award. She received a bachelor of arts degree from the University of Puget Sound, a master of arts degree in communication studies from the University of Iowa, and a juris doctorate from the University of Minnesota. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Shannon Going
01/21/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Serving Trafficking Victims in Immigrant Communities

Shannon Going is the Attorney Director of Casa Cornelia Law Center’s (CCLC’s) Human Trafficking Program, where she represents immigrants in visa applications for U and T nonimmigrant status based on labor trafficking and exploitation. Before joining CCLC, Ms. Going served as the Immigration Project Director and Staff Attorney for the California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation’s Labor and Civil Rights Litigation Project. Ms. Going has experience working with family-based immigration petitions, obtaining nonimmigrant status for qualifying victims of crime and trafficking, and state and federal employment litigation, with a focus on class action lawsuits on behalf of low-wage workers. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Raymond Goins

05/14/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Impact of Crime Scene Clean Up

Sergeant Raymond Goins has been an officer of the Norman Police Department since March 1997. While serving with the Department he has been assigned additional duties as a Technical Investigator (CSI); Drug Recognition Expert (DRE Instructor qualified); and academy instructor of basic forensic investigation, crime scene processing/evidence collection, DUI enforcement/Standardized Field Sobriety Tests, and domestic violence. He is currently assigned to the Forensic Investigation Section, Criminal Investigation Division of the Norman Police Department.

Sergeant Goins has provided training for the Oklahoma Attorney General’s Office, the Oklahoma District Attorney’s Council, and several other agencies on topics of domestic violence, crime scene and injury photography, collection and preservation of evidence, and crime scene processing. Prior to his tenure with Norman PD he was a patrolman for the Roswell (NM) Police Department for 2 years and a Military Policeman in the United States Army for 12 years. Sergeant Goins has enforced military and civilian laws in four states and two foreign countries.

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Carol Gomez, LCSW
01/21/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Serving Trafficking Victims in Immigrant Communities

Carol Gomez, LCSW, isa trauma-informed therapist and restorative justice mediator for youth and families. She counsels young people victimized by commercial sexual exploitation as part of a diversion program for trafficked children and adolescents initiated in 2014 in Los Angeles County. She also provides local and global anti-oppression and trauma-informed training, consultation, therapy, and coaching services through the Hearts and Minds Solidarity Counseling Project.

Ms. Gomez has more than two decades of experience working on issues related to violence against women, immigrant rights, victim services, and social justice community organization. She is the founder and former director of Matahari: Eye of the Day, an organization committed to building solidarity and creating community solutions for social justice and human rights. At Matahari, she managed multidisciplinary teams and coordinated holistic care for immigrant survivors of human trafficking, domestic and sexual abuse, and other human rights violations.

Ms. Gomez has published and coauthored several reports and articles on supporting survivors of violence and trauma and creating community responses in the wake of trauma. She has been an adjunct faculty member at Boston College School of Social Work, and she guest lectures at campuses throughout Massachusetts. Ms. Gomez previously served on the boards of United for a Fair Economy and the Resist Foundation, and she was appointed to the Massachusetts Governor’s Council on Domestic and Sexual Violence. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Dan Gregory

12/9/15 online discussion cohost
Topic: Using Volunteers Effectively

Dan Gregory is the Community Relations Coordinator at Casa de los Niños in Tucson, Arizona, a crisis shelter for abused and neglected children aged 12 and younger. He supervises the Volunteer Program which recruits, screens, places, and trains more than 300 volunteers who help care for the children in residence. He is a charter member of the Southern Arizona Volunteer Management Association, where he has held several leadership positions. He has presented local and national trainings on volunteer management and crisis intervention.

Mr. Gregory was a member of the National Organization for Victim Assistance and served on the National Crisis Response Team. He reported to Oklahoma City following the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building and to New York City following the terrorist attacks of September 11. Mr. Gregory also is a member of the Arizona Governor’s Commission on Service and Volunteerism which promotes volunteerism within the state and administers federal AmeriCorps dollars throughout the state. For more than 15 years, he was a volunteer advocate with the Pima County Attorney’s Victim Witness Program, where he responded with law enforcement to help meet the needs of crime victims in southern Arizona.

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Shamele Hill
02/11/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Building Resiliency in Child Abuse Organizations

Shamele Hill is the Director of Training and Community Engagement at the Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition in St. Louis, MO, where she helps develop and facilitate trainings and support groups and coordinates the "A Place to Call Home" news feature, in partnership with St. Louis’ NBC affiliate, KSDK News Channel 5. Ms. Hill has been involved in the field of social work for 15 years, and has extensive experience in working with victims, specifically children who have been abused and neglected and victims of domestic violence. Previously, Ms. Hill served as a case advocacy supervisor at Voices for Children, Inc., where she supervised court-appointed special advocates for children in the foster care system. She also served as one of the original Resiliency Coaches for the OVC-funded Resiliency Project, which developed and pilot-tested a program model that child abuse organizations can use to build resiliency in their employees and volunteers. Upon practicing the principles of resiliency, Ms. Hill developed the Employee Relations Committee within the Voices for Children agency. Mrs. Hill received a master of social work from Arizona State University and a master of human resource management from Lindenwood University. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Karin Ho
03/25/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Postconviction Exonerations and Victim Assistance

Karin Ho is the Program Administrator for the Critical Incident Stress Management Program for the Ohio Department of Youth Services. In this capacity she trains and coordinates a team within the juvenile correctional system to respond to staff who have experienced trauma in the line of duty and/or personally. She also provides direct services to crime victims through notification and victim advocacy. Ms. Ho provides many victim-related trainings, including how to investigate and respond to nonfatal strangulation.

Ms. Ho is the past Administrator of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction’s Office of Victim Services, a position she held 1995–2013. Ms. Ho oversaw direct services to crime victims, including victim notification, crisis intervention, victim safety planning, educational programming, and support through the death penalty clemency and execution witnessing processes. She was also the chairperson for the National Association of Victim Service Professionals in Corrections for 4 years. In this capacity, she served as a member of the national advisory board for the Statewide Automated Victim Information and Notification Program and has assisted in the development of national program standards.

She has conducted numerous national trainings on the impact of crime programming for offenders and on victim-offender dialogue, a process through which victims of violent crime may meet with their offenders. Prior to her career in corrections, Ms. Ho worked as a victim advocate in the sexual assault field for more than 10 years.

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Leah Holland
4/8/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Providing Appropriate Support for Military Victims of Sexual Assault

Ms. Holland served as the sexual assault response coordinator and domestic violence victim advocate coordinator for the U.S. Army Garrison, Yongsan, in South Korea. In this capacity, she coordinated the installation's 24-hour victim advocacy services, educated commands and service members on reporting options and responsibilities, coordinated events for Domestic Violence Awareness Month and Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and conducted healthy relationship classes.

Ms. Holland also worked as the program coordinator for the Pregnant and Parenting Women and Teens grant and the Survivors With Disabilities grant at the Washington Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs (WCSAP) from 2011 to 2014. She oversaw grants addressing pregnant and parenting women, teen survivors of domestic and sexual violence, and survivors of sexual assault living in long-term care facilities; provided technical assistance and training; and collaborated with state partners. She also helped to develop multidisciplinary practice guidelines for legal, health, and social services to routinely and compassionately screen individuals for abuse and to make appropriate, culturally relevant referrals to local services. Ms. Holland holds a master’s degree in business administration and a bachelor’s degree in women’s studies. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Teresa Huizar
4/22/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Child Victims: Providing Effective Rights Enforcement Representation

Teresa Huizar was appointed the Executive Director of National Children's Alliance on February 26th, 2008. Prior to her tenure with NCA, Ms. Huizar served as the Executive Director of the Western Regional Children's Advocacy Center, a technical assistance and training center for 200 Children's Advocacy Centers and multidisciplinary teams in 12 Western states.

Over the course of her career, Ms. Huizar has headed two local Children's Advocacy Centers, coordinated Children's Advocacy Center efforts in the State of Colorado, conducted school-based child abuse prevention programs for more than 10,000 children, and facilitated psycho-educational groups for abused children. She also provides consultation internationally on effective child abuse intervention, most recently to the governments of Turkey and Peru.

Ms. Huizar has a special interest in public policy in the child welfare arena, especially in reducing child abuse fatalities and in the provision of trauma-focused, evidence-supported mental health treatment to child victims of abuse. Ms. Huizar has served on numerous related boards and committees over the years. She is currently a member of both the Advisory Board and Sexual Abuse Workgroup of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network as well as the Steering Committee of the National Coalition to End Child Abuse Deaths. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Karen Kalergis
02/11/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Building Resiliency in Child Abuse Organizations

Karen Kalergis has 22 years’ experience in victim services in government, nonprofit, and university settings. She is the President of Mani Partners Strategic Communications, a consulting practice that serves child welfare, victim services, and social justice agencies; and the Product Coordinator for the Vicarious Trauma Toolkit being developed and piloted by Northeastern University to address vicarious trauma in victim assistance providers and first responders. Ms. Kalergis also is a consultant for the OVC Training and Technical Assistance Center, focusing on vicarious trauma and resiliency, crime victims’ rights, strategic planning, and state victim assistance academies. Ms. Kalergis’ interest in how victim services work affects practitioners dates back to 1991, when she helped Texas develop a state crisis response team to address not only the needs of victims, but the needs of first responders as well. She recently served as the project director for the OVC-funded Resiliency Project, which created and pilot-tested a program model that child abuse organizations can use to build resiliency in their employees and volunteers. Ms. Kalergis has a master’s degree in broadcast journalism and communications. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Rebecca S.T. Khalil, J.D.
4/22/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Child Victims: Providing Effective Rights Enforcement Representation

Rebecca Khalil is a staff attorney with the National Crime Victim Law Institute (NCVLI), where she directed its Safeguarding Child-Victims’ Rights Initiative from 2010–2012. At NCVLI, Ms. Khalil researches victims’ rights laws and policies across the United States, drafts amicus briefs, provides technical legal assistance to attorneys and advocates nationwide, and creates and presents online and in-person trainings and webinars on a variety of victims’ rights topics.

In 2015, Ms. Khalil was nominated for the General George C. Marshall Public Leadership Award. Before joining NCVLI, Ms. Khalil was a litigation associate with Baker & Hostetler LLP in New York City, where she worked on a number of complex commercial and business litigations, including trade secret, securities, and contract cases, as well as white collar criminal defense, governmental and quasi-governmental matters, and corporate investigations. During law school, she was an extern with the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Jose, CA. Ms. Khalil holds a B.A. in History from Seattle University and earned her J.D. from Stanford Law School, where she was elected to the Order of the Coif. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Reverend Dr. Bernard "Skip" Keels

1/28/16 online discussion host
Topic: Challenges and Opportunities for Supporting Nontraditional Victims

Reverend Dr. Bernard "Skip" Keels is the Director of the University Chapel at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland, and a member of the Order of Elders in the Peninsula-Delaware Conference of the United Methodist Church. He serves on Morgan State’s Behavior Emergency Assessment and Response Team which provides resources and referrals for victims of crime within the campus community.

Previously, Reverend Keels served as District Superintendent of the Baltimore West District of the Baltimore-Washington Conference, and as Executive Director of the Methodist Action Program in Wilmington, Delaware. He also has served as the pastor of several churches.

Reverend Keels has conducted a number of workshops and delivered several major addresses, including a keynote on "Community and Economic Development-A Partnership Between the Business and Church Community" at the Harvard Business School. He also was the conference preacher at the 1997 Annual Conference of the Methodist Church of the Bahamas in Nassau, Bahamas.

Reverend Keels holds a bachelor of arts degree with honors from Haverford College, a master of divinity degree from Yale University, and a doctor of ministry degree from the McKendree University School of Religious Studies. He has served on the Conference Board of Ordained Ministry, and is a recipient of the Rockefeller Theological Fellowship.

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Cynthia King, LCSW, LISW
02/25/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Developing an Effective Multidisciplinary Team

Cynthia King, LCSW, LISW, it the President of King & Associates, Inc., where she oversees eight therapists treating victims of sexual abuse, non-offending parents, and sex offenders. Ms. King has 28 years of experience in assessment and treatment of juvenile and adult sex offenders, sexually reactive youth, and victims of sexual abuse and their families. She serves on the Pennsylvania Governor’s Sex Offender Assessment Board, where she conducts parole assessments for adults who commit sexual offenses against children; and also conducts sex offender assessments for the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Her recent endeavors include individual treatment for males convicted of child pornography crimes.

For 20 years, Ms. King provided consultation to mental health professionals and agencies on providing therapeutic services to victims of sexual abuse, including consults for child advocacy centers (CACs) and child welfare agencies regarding their forensic interviews. Ms. King has written grants and numerous curricula on topics such as child sexual abuse, supervising sexual abuse cases, working with non-offending parents, assessing and treating juvenile and adult sex offenders, and psychological maltreatment of children. She also co-wrote and piloted a 6-month forensic interviewing program for caseworkers, which included a field observation component. Ms. King played an integral role in developing two CACs and a residential treatment program for sexually acting-out adjudicated youth.

Ms. King is on the Ohio Attorney General’s list of expert witnesses for child sexual abuse cases. She typically testifies regarding the disclosure process of children and the forensic interviews conducted by law enforcement officers and caseworkers. She is a member of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers, the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children, and the National Association of Social Workers. Ms. King received a master’s degree in social administration from Case Western Reserve University.

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Stacy Malone

09/16/15 online discussion cohost
Topic:Responding to Confidential Victim Disclosures on a College Campus

Stacy Malone, Esq., is the Executive Director of the Victim Rights Law Center (VRLC) in Boston, MA. She joined VRLC, the first national nonprofit law center in the country dedicated to the civil legal needs of rape and sexual assault victims, in 2004 as a volunteer attorney for VRLC’s Rape Survivors’ Law Project, where she provided free legal services to sexual assault survivors on employment, safety, privacy, and other issues. After serving five years on VRLC’s Board of Directors, she was appointed the Executive Director in 2010. Ms. Malone manages VRLC’s administrative, operations, and strategic direction for both the Boston, MA and Portland, OR offices. Ms. Malone partners with the Office on Violence Against Women, OVC, and local and national organizations to train advocates, lawyers, medical professionals, law enforcement, college administrators, and others on how to improve the response to sexual violence. She has experience in the private sector and at both federal and state agencies. Her legal career has focused on working with young women, victims of violence, and those who have faced discrimination. She has presented on the civil legal needs of sexual assault victims, legal issues of sexual assault victims who are minors, advocating under Title IX, conducting a holistic sexual assault legal intake, and the privacy rights of sexual assault victims. Ms. Malone holds a B.A. from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, a Graduate Certificate in Women in Politics and Public Policy Program from the University of Massachusetts at Boston, and a J.D. from the Boston University School of Law.

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Ann McCarty
4/8/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Providing Appropriate Support for Military Victims of Sexual Assault

Ann McCarty is the Associate Director of the North County (California) Rape Crisis and Child Protection Center. She has worked with victims of sexual violence and interpersonal violence for more than 20 years. She has also helped conceptualize and develop programs to train professionals working with victims of violence. With her extensive knowledge of the military and its interactions with sexual assault survivors, Ms. McCarty has been instrumental in solidifying the partnership between Vandenberg Air Force Base (AFB) officials and the Sexual Assault Response Team of Santa Barbara County, California. She has trained numerous victim advocates through Vandenberg AFB’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office. Ms. McCarty also developed an early training program with the Office of Special Investigations and has provided training to agents responsible for investigating sexual assaults of military members.

Ms. McCarty has been a member of the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault Council and a representative for the Central Coast Region since 2003. She holds a bachelor of sciences degree in criminal justice and a master’s degree in business administration. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Dr. Barry S. McCrary

1/28/16 online discussion host
Topic: Challenges and Opportunities for Supporting Nontraditional Victims

Dr. Barry S. McCrary is an Associate Professor in the school of law enforcement and justice administration at Western Illinois University. Dr. McCrary has over 20 years of experience in the field of juvenile justice and has held numerous positions. Dr. McCrary worked for Allegheny County Juvenile Court’s Community Intensive Supervision Program in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where he was responsible for counseling, designing, implementing, and monitoring a progressive treatment program. He has also served as a counselor, consultant, therapist, and crisis intervention specialist for various organizations.

Dr. McCrary is also the founder of a nonprofit organization titled Maleness to Manhood Inc., which is a mentoring program for inner-city youth. Dr. McCrary is experienced in the field of social science, administration of justice, and educational leadership.

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Herman Millholland

10/15/15 online discussion cohost
Topic:Lessons Learned From Mass Violence

Herman Millholland is founder of the consulting firm Millholland and Associates and serves on the board of directors as president of End Violence Against Women International (EVAWI). With over three decades of experience working in the government sector, he has served as a policy advisor providing guidance and advice to government officials and policymakers on matters of public interest. Mr. Millholland formerly served as chief of the Crime Victim Services Division within the Texas Attorney General’s Office and as State VOCA Administrator from 2002-2010. He also served as director of the Victim Services Division in the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office in California from 1989-2000.

Mr. Millholland currently serves as a contractor for OVC and served as a principal consultant for OVC’s Helping Victims of Mass Violence and Terrorism: Planning, Response, Recovery, and Resources toolkit. The project was a direct result of OVC’s commitment to assist communities in the planning, response, and recovery from a mass violence or terrorism event. In the spring of 2013, Mr. Millholland was assigned by OVC to work with the community of Newtown, Connecticut in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December 2012. Mr. Millholland interviewed first responders, victim advocates, mental health providers, and government officials as part of an assessment of long-term recovery needs and community resiliency efforts. Building on the lessons learned from Sandy Hook and other mass violence incidents, this OVC Toolkit is a resource to help communities better prepare, plan, respond, and recover should an event occur. With input, support, and recommendations from experts and stakeholder groups from around the country, the comprehensive community toolkit was developed and released in August 2015.

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Michael L. Milnor

05/14/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Impact of Crime Scene Clean Up

Michael Milnor is recently retired after a 31-year career in law enforcement in the Commonwealth of Virginia. He has held the positions of Sheriff, Director of Public Safety, Director/Coordinator of an FBI multijurisdictional task force, Senior Supervisory Investigator, and polygraph examiner. Mr. Milnor currently holds the position of Professor of Criminal Justice at Liberty University, teaching over 400 residential undergraduate criminal justice students. He has a B.S. Degree in Sociology/Criminology and an M.A. Degree in Management and Leadership. Mr. Milnor has been involved in hundreds of investigations concerning crimes against persons, including child homicide and child abuse. He is a guest lecturer throughout Virginia as well as nationally for the National District Attorney’s Association on the topics of crimes against persons and sexual assault investigation.

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Katie Monroe
03/25/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Postconviction Exonerations and Victim Assistance

Katie Monroe serves as the Senior Advocate for National Partnerships at the Innocence Project. Ms. Monroe joined the Innocence Project in August 2012 as its first Senior Advocate for National Partnerships, located in Washington, DC. In this position, Ms. Monroe works with other key stakeholders, such as crime victims, police, and prosecutors, to build bridges and develop consensus around issues concerning the accuracy and reliability of the criminal justice system, and facilitate conversations with these other groups about the causes and consequences of wrongful convictions.

Prior to joining the Project, Ms. Monroe served as the executive director of the Rocky Mountain Innocence Center, covering innocence work and issues in Utah, Nevada and Wyoming. She was also an adjunct clinical professor at the S.J. Quinney College of Law, teaching students about wrongful convictions and overseeing casework. Previously, Ms. Monroe was Senior Counsel at the Constitution Project and served on the board of directors of the Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project. Ms. Monroe began her legal career as a law clerk to the Honorable Bernard G. Barrow of the Virginia Court of Appeals and as an attorney for the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. She received her law degree from George Mason University. Ms. Monroe also currently serves on the board of directors of the National Innocence Network. View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Kimber Nicoletti

1/20/16 online discussion cohost
Topic: Human Trafficking in Rural Communities

Kimber J. Nicoletti, M.S.W., Director and Founder of Multicultural Efforts to End Sexual Assault at Purdue University, has been an advocate for Latina immigrant and farm worker communities for over 20 years. Ms. Nicoletti has 12 years of direct experience working with victims of human trafficking and trains others on conducting culturally relevant forensic interviews with Latina immigrant victims of human trafficking. Ms. Nicoletti serves as the Chair of the National Sexual Violence Resource Center’s Multilingual Access Project Committee. She also created and moderates Mujeres del Movimiento, a resource and support group for Latinas who work in violence prevention.

Ms. Nicoletti works with communities and organizations at the national, state, and local level to provide culturally relevant victim services. As a clinician, she has developed a successful model of sexual violence prevention for the migrant farm worker and Latina/o immigrant communities. Her experiences as a survivor and a bilingual therapist provide her with insight into barriers and challenges in creating culturally relevant services. Ms. Nicoletti has consulted with many organizations including Praxis International, the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, Southern Poverty Law Center, California Rural Legal Assistance, and the U.S. Department of the Army. Ms. Nicoletti was honored as a 2013 Woman of Distinction by the YWCA of Greater Lafayette. She received an M.S.W. from Indiana University and a B.A. in Sociology from Purdue University.

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Joyce Siegel

12/9/15 online discussion cohost
Topic: Using Volunteers Effectively

Joyce Siegel, L.M.S.W., has been the Program Director for Sexual Assault Services of Calhoun County (Michigan) since 1998. She served as the Michigan Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence Board President from 2006-2011. Ms. Siegel has extensive expertise and experience in program development, implementation, and service delivery for sexual assault victims and the community. She also has expertise in child sexual abuse, including experience developing the Child Advocacy Center in Calhoun County. She trains and supervises staff, volunteers, and community members to work in partnership to provide a comprehensive coordinated response to sexual assault survivors throughout Calhoun County.

She has worked as an adjunct professor with the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies at Western Michigan University and continues to mentor university student interns at the agency. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Social Work from Western Michigan University.

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Kiricka Yarbough Smith

1/20/16 online discussion cohost
Topic: Human Trafficking in Rural Communities

Kiricka Yarbough Smith is a consultant, trainer, and advocate for the safety and empowerment of women and children. She has experience in the areas of mental health, developmental disabilities, case management, and collaboration. Ms. Yarbough Smith provides training and technical assistance to service providers and resources and referrals to survivors of human trafficking. She has provided numerous trainings to law enforcement, prosecutors, service providers, and community- and faith-based groups through her work with the International Police Training Institute, the North Carolina Conference of District Attorneys, and the Children’s Advocacy Centers of North Carolina.

Ms. Yarbough Smith managed the human trafficking program for the North Carolina Coalition Against Sexual Assault and provided oversight for their OVC Services for Human Trafficking Victims grant for over 6 years. She currently serves as the Chair of the North Carolina Coalition Against Human Trafficking, and consults as an investigator on the University of North Carolina’s School of Social Work’s 5-year project with the Administration for Children and Families to address trafficking in the child welfare system. Most recently, she has accepted the opportunity to consult on the North Carolina Council for Women’s human trafficking training and education grant.

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Dr. Cris M. Sullivan
05/05/2015 online discussion cohost
Topic: Building Your Own Body of Evidence-Based Knowledge

Dr. Cris M. Sullivan is the Director of the Research Consortium on Gender-Based Violence and Professor of Ecological/Community Psychology at Michigan State University (MSU). She was appointed by Governor Rick Snyder to chair the Michigan Domestic & Sexual Violence Prevention & Treatment Board. She is also Senior Research Advisor to the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence.

Dr. Sullivan is internationally recognized for her expertise in evaluating domestic violence and sexual assault programs. In part because she ran an advocacy program herself for over 10 years, she understands many issues facing nonprofit programs and also understands how to safely and respectfully locate and interview survivors over time. Her reputation led the Family Violence Prevention & Services Administration (FVPSA) to enlist her help in 2006 in creating two outcomes that are now used by all FVPSA grantees across the county.

In 2012, Dr. Sullivan developed a Theory of Change describing the process through which domestic violence programs improve the lives of survivors and their children (www.dvevidenceproject.org). This model has been adopted nationally. She has written evaluation manuals for programs and provides trainings on this topic that are utilized by policymakers, academics, and service providers alike.  View this Guest Host’s photograph.

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Catherine Thurston

06/25/2015 online discussion host
Topic: Elder Abuse in the LGBTQ Community

Catherine Thurston is the Senior Director of Services and Training at Services & Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Elders (SAGE), where she oversees all social services and community-based programming. Since joining SAGE in 2005, Ms. Thurston has overseen the launches of both the nation's first federally funded National Resource Center on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Aging and the nation's first senior center devoted to LGBT older adults.

Ms. Thurston has worked in the fields of aging and mental health for 24 years. Before joining SAGE, she was the Director of Alzheimer's Programs at Brooklyn';s Cobble Hill Health Center. The first decade of her career was spent at one of the nation's first geriatric mobile mental health programs, providing case management and psychotherapy to homebound older adults.

Ms. Thurston is published in the areas of aging and dementia and LGBT Aging. She is a member of AARP's Caregiving Advisory Panel and the American Society on Aging's LGBT Aging Issues Network Council and was recently appointed to the steering committee of the National Resource Center on Nutrition and Aging. Ms. Thurston holds a masters in social work from Hunter College.

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Mary E. Wambach

07/22/15 online discussion host
Topic: Addressing Communication Barriers When Serving Crime Victims

Mary E. Wambach, originally from Rochester, NY, comes from a family of 7 children, several of which are deaf or hard of hearing. Her expertise includes general disability, deafness and hearing loss, developmental delays, and Autism Spectrum Disorder for both children and adults. Shortly after obtaining her degree in psychology, she began work on Deafness and Disability Rights. Skilled at working with people with diverse disabilities and from assorted groups and cultures, she has administered several nonprofit organizations in New York City and Poughkeepsie, NY; Boston, MA; Phoenix, AZ; San Diego, CA; and in Texas. Her ability to empower others and foster a stewardship model among agency staff, stakeholders, and boards is the cornerstone of her work.

Currently, Ms. Wambach is consulting with Satdaya Studios – a deaf owned tech and creative service agency. She holds memberships in the Coordinated Community Response Coalition Board in Corpus Christi, the City of Corpus Christi Committee for People with Disabilities, and the National Disability-Abuse/CAN DO panel. She is published in i.d.e.a.l. Magazine, American Prosecutors Research Institute Updates, and other national publications. She has trained close to 5,000 law enforcement and other professionals through SafePlace-Austin; the Disability-Abuse Project; the National District Attorneys Association; and her other affiliations. She has also presented about pedophiles and fetishists who target, groom, and abuse children and adults with disabilities, often without any intervention from families or authorities. Her training includes performance (stage, radio, and TV) and the fields of domestic violence, sexual assault, mediation, multiculturalism, community organizing, and advocacy.

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Geri Wisner

11/17/15 online discussion cohost
Topic: Improving Federal Agency Response to Sexual Violence in Indian Country

Geri Wisner is the Tribal Prosecutor for the Pawnee Nation and Wyandotte Tribe of Oklahoma and the Executive Director for the Native American Children’s Alliance (NACA). She also oversees the Wisner Law Firm and serves as a member of the National Coordination Committee on the American Indian/Alaska Native SANE-SART Initiative.

Ms. Wisner is a citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, and served as the first Ambassador to the United Nations representing them. She also conducts specialized trainings for law enforcement, prosecutors, advocates, and allied child abuse professionals responding to child maltreatment and domestic violence utilizing a victim-centered approach. She served as the Attorney General for the Kickapoo Tribe of Oklahoma, and Prosecutor for the Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma, Citizen Potawatomi Nation of Oklahoma, Absentee Shawnee Tribe, Kickapoo Traditional Tribe of Texas, and the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma.

Ms. Wisner is a former U.S. Marine. She holds a B.A. in Political Science and an American Indian Studies Certificate from Oklahoma State University, and a J.D. and Native American Law Certificate from the University of Tulsa College of Law. She is the president of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation bar association and serves as a board member of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC).

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Laura Zárate

07/22/15 online discussion host
Topic: Addressing Communication Barriers When Serving Crime Victims

Laura Zárate is the Founding Executive Director of Arte Sana (Art Heals), which is recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a model program for underserved survivors of sexual violence. As a Latina victim advocate and bilingual training specialist with 29 years of experience, Ms. Zárate has presented at national and international conferences and reached thousands of victim advocates, allied professionals, and promotoras through workshops held in English and Spanish. For more than a decade, she has led Arte Sana's bilingual training and materials development projects, including the first national Spanish-language victim service Web page, the first Spanish-language Sexual Assault Awareness Month packet, and the Existe Ayuda Toolkit. Ms. Zárate is also cofounder and facilitator of Alianza Latina en contra la Agresión Sexual (ALAS), established in 2004 as the national Latina alliance against sexual violence.

In 2004, Ms. Zárate received the National Sexual Violence Resource Center's first National Award for Outstanding Response to and Prevention of Sexual Violence; and, in 2009, she received the Community Empowerment Award from the Texas Association Against Sexual Assault. In 2014, Ms. Zárate became a certified instructor of community health workers (CHWs) or promotores recognized by the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Ms. Zárate holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Texas at Austin.

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