Workshop Session 1 (10:20 am – 11:35 am)Immigrant Survivors of Domestic Violence: Legal Rights and Safety Planning Under Current Immigration Policy
- Ashley DiIonno, LGSW, Tahirih Justice Center
Ashley has more than 7 years of experience serving immigrant victims of crime and 13 years of experience working in the immigrant community. With an undergraduate dual degree in Human Services and Spanish and Masters in Social Work she started her work in the field of domestic violence at Adelante Familia shortly before it joined House of Ruth. As the current Program Manager for Social Services at Tahirih Justice Center in Baltimore, MD, she works hard to provide trauma-informed, client-centered services to survivors of gender-based violence and address their unique safety needs through comprehensive case management and supportive programming.
- Daniella Pozzo, Tahirih Justice Center
As a Staff Attorney for Tahirih Justice Center in Baltimore, Daniella Pozzo advocates for immigrant women and girls fleeing gender-based violence by helping them obtain legal status, safety, and independence. Her advocacy includes immigration law matters such as U visas, T visas, Asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, and relief under the Violence Against Women Act, as well as family law matters, such as protective orders, custody, guardianship, and divorce. Prior to joining Tahirih, Daniella was a Staff Attorney at Farmworker Legal Services of Michigan where she represented indigent immigrant farmworkers in immigration and employment cases, initiated a targeted advocacy project to expand the representation of workplace sexual assault survivors, and developed a community partners network sensitive to the needs of immigrant survivors of workplace sexual assault.
Strengthening Offender Accountability: Effective Strategies for Criminal Justice Law Enforcement and Prosecution Approaches
- Jennifer Morton, Calvert County State’s Attorney’s Office
Jennifer Morton received her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from Bowie State University in 1993, her Juris Doctor degree from Widener University School of Law in 1998, and her Master in Criminal Justice from University of Massachusetts Lowell in 2017. She has been a member of the Maryland bar since 1998. Jennifer has been a prosecutor in the Calvert County State’s Attorney’s Office for over 16 years and has worked in the domestic violence field since 2003. She currently serves as supervisor of the domestic violence unit in the Calvert County State’s Attorney’s office and prosecutes all felony domestic violence related crimes. Jennifer has also served as a trainer for law enforcement and other criminal justice professionals in both Maryland and Virginia in the areas of criminal law and procedure, liability, and intimate partner violence. Jennifer has attended numerous specialized trainings in intimate partner violence and served as Chair of the Calvert County Domestic Violence Fatality Review Team from 2007-2011 and Vice Chair of the Calvert County Domestic Violence Fatality Review Team from 2014 through the present.
- Homer Rich, Calvert County State’s Attorney’s Office
Homer Rich currently serves as a Special Investigator in the Domestic Violence Unit of the Calvert County State’s Attorney’s Office. He has a BA in psychology from Gettysburg College. Homer has almost 40 years of law enforcement experience and has worked in the patrol and investigative divisions. He served as Assistant Barrack Commander in 1997 through 2000 and for nine years as Barrack Commander in 2000 through 2009 with the Maryland State Police, Prince Frederick barrack. He has received special recognition and awards for his work as a trooper and investigator. Homer has a wealth of knowledge in investigations and for the past 2 years has been working with domestic violence victims in his current position.
Navigating the Maze: A Civilian’s Guide to Military Responses to Family Violence and Sexual Assault
- Julia Caplan, LCSW-C, Department of Veterans Affairs
Julia Caplan, LCSW-C, currently serves as the IPV Assistance Program Coordinator at the VA Maryland Health Care System. She has previously worked in multiple areas of the VA health care system, including Women’s Health and Geriatrics. Julia currently serves on the Board of the Maryland Health Care Coalition Against Domestic Violence, as well as the University of Maryland, Baltimore Community IPV Collaborative. She coordinates the Social Work Graduate Education Program at the VA, as well as the Former Prisoner of War Advocacy Program. Julia graduated with her MSW from University of Maryland, Baltimore School of Social Work in 2011.
- Amanda Cardone, United States Air Force
Amanda Cardone is the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Specialist, or SAPR Victim Advocate, for the 70th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing of the US Air Force headquartered at Fort Meade, Maryland. Amanda has over thirteen years of experience in the anti- sexual assault and domestic violence fields, having formerly worked for TurnAround, Inc., the Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault, and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.
Bringing It Out of the Closet: Community Response to LGBTQIA+ Victims of IPV
- Randall Leonard, LCSW, Chase Brexton
Maryland native Randall Leonard is a licensed clinical social worker who has worked with survivors of intimate partner violence for four years. He currently serves as a Behavioral Health Consultant at the LGBT Health Resource Center of Chase Brexton, providing services from individual therapy to assessments for gender-affirming surgery, and currently co-facilitates a group for LGBTQ+ interpersonal violence survivors. In addition, he works as a Behavioral Health Specialist in the Emergency Department of Union Memorial Hospital, and represents Chase Brexton on the Baltimore City LGBTQ+ DV Workgroup in coalition with TurnAround, the House of Ruth, and the Baltimore City Council. Before joining the Chase Brexton team, Mr. Leonard served survivors of intimate partner violence at Family and Children’s Services, where he provided individual therapy and a weekly support group. He started his social work career working with people with severe and persistent mental illness at Sheppard Pratt Health Systems. Mr. Leonard holds a Master in Social Work from the University of Maryland School of Social Work with a concentration in clinical behavioral health.
- Erin Fox, House of Ruth Maryland
After earning a BA in Sociology and Gender and Women’s Studies from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Erin spent nearly 7 years with Hopeworks in the legal and residential programs. While there, Erin was a member of a taskforce established to integrate sexual assault and rape crisis services into Hopeworks core services. In the winter of 2012, Erin joined the House of Ruth Maryland’s Lethality Assessment Program as the Lead Outreach Specialist. Erin is currently the Contact Center Manager for HRM and co-chairs the LGBTQ committee. Erin in passionate about providing comprehensive, high quality contact to victims/survivors of IPV and harnessing the power of data to inform service provision. Erin is Baltimore’s resident Expert of Nothing, Women’s Studies edition and in their spare time Erin has the pleasure of performing with the Baltimore Improv Group, reads, and pursues a hobby level interest in junk food.
Prevalence, Impact, and Action: Preventing Adverse Childhood Experiences in Maryland
- Erin Boguski, Maryland Department of Health
Erin Boguski is the Project Coordinator of the Rape and Sexual Assault Prevention Program (RSAPP) at the Maryland Department of Health, where she contributes to the reduction of sexual violence in Maryland by providing and coordinating training and technical assistance on evidence-based practices and effective primary prevention strategies, by effectively managing subgrants and contracts that result in sexual violence prevention program implementation at statewide and local levels, and by engaging in collaboration and coalition-building activities with internal and external stakeholders to address related and overlapping issues. Erin has over 10 years of experience in anti-violence and gender-based violence work, including at the Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence (MNADV), where she provided training, coordinated workshops and statewide conferences, and provided coordination and technical assistance to stakeholders. In years prior, Erin taught Women’s Studies as an Adjunct Faculty member at the Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC), worked with volunteers at Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland, and assisted prospective graduate students at Towson University. Erin earned her Bachelor’s degree at Kent State University and her Master’s degree in Women’s Studies at Towson University.
- Genevieve Polk, Maryland Department of Health
Genevieve Polk is the Injury Prevention Program Coordinator in the Center for Injury and Sexual Assault Prevention in the Environmental Health Bureau in the Prevention and Health Promotion Administration at the Maryland Department of Health. She is responsible for program management, research, technical assistance, partnership and stakeholder engagement, evaluation, and strategic health communication. Areas of emphasis have included intimate partner violence, child abuse and neglect, falls prevention, and motor vehicle safety. She has also served for seven months on Governor Larry Hogan’s Opioid Operational Command Center, employing her strategic planning and health communications skills to address the opioid and heroin crisis in the state. Ms. Polk received her bachelor’s degree from Bowdoin College and her Masters in Public Health in Heath Education from the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University.
- Georgette Lavetsky, Maryland Department of Health
Georgette Lavetsky is the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) Coordinator at the Maryland Department of Health. She is responsible for coordinating survey design, data collection, data analysis, and data dissemination for the Maryland BRFSS survey. Ms. Lavetsky received her Master’s of Health Science in Chronic Disease Epidemiology from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and her bachelor’s in Biology from the University of Scranton. Ms. Lavetsky has previous experience as an epidemiologist in HIV/AIDs and substance use, including ten years working at the local level.
Workshop Session 2 (12:35 pm – 1:50 pm)Cultural Considerations: The Impact of Domestic Violence on Immigrant Children and Their Families
- Varsha N., JD, Consultant and Executive Committee Board Member for End Violence Against Women International
Varsha serves as an independent training consultant and has been a guest speaker at non-profit organizations, agencies, and universities nationally and internationally addressing a wide variety of topics including diversity, cross-cultural communication, domestic violence and sexual assault and she is well-experienced in working with survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence in a variety of settings. Varsha has provided and directed the training of advocates and staff in skills and knowledge related to the support of survivors. She has developed programs to broaden services provided by rape crisis centers, to improve protocols for advocates working on national crisis helplines and in-person hospital advocacy, and to address unique challenges, such as how to manage abusive callers. Varsha received her BA from Columbia University in New York and later received her JD. Varsha serves on the Los Angeles Police Department DNA Taskforce and on the Executive Board of End Violence Against Women International, committed to educating those who respond to gender-based violence, equipping them with the knowledge and tools they need to support victims, and holding perpetrators accountable.
- Rajesh R. Donthi, M.D., Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
Dr. Rajesh Donthi is a Pediatric Hospitalist and Associate Division Head in the Division of Hospital Medicine at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles/Keck School of Medicine at USC. His professional journey has been driven by the goals of improving the systems of care for hospitalized children and adolescents, improving the educational training in Pediatrics and Pediatric Hospital Medicine, and leveraging technology to improve clinical care and operations. Throughout his educational and professional experiences, he has become increasingly aware of the impact of intimate partner violence, child abuse, and neglect on the health and wellness of children and adolescents and the critical timing of interventions to prevent those consequences.
Safety Planning with High-Danger Survivors
- Kristine Chapman, Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence
Kristine Chapman is a Project Manager for the Lethality Assessment Program at the Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence where she supports the day-to-day operations of the program and provides training and technical assistance to sites interested in and implementing the LAP. Kristine previously directed community outreach at The Willow Domestic Violence Center in Lawrence, Kansas, where she served as liaison to local law enforcement. She also worked as a 911 dispatcher for 7 years and trained para-professional volunteer counselors at Headquarters Counseling Center, the suicide prevention lifeline center for Kansas. She holds a Bachelor’s in Emergency Management with a minor in Public Safety Telecommunications.
- Alicia Bickoff, Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence
Alicia Bickoff is a LAP Manager at the Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence. She managed the Domestic Violence Homicide Prevention Demonstration Initiative where she conducted in-person assessments of sites to determine their readiness to implement the Lethality Assessment Program (LAP) and the Domestic Violence High Risk Team Model (DVHRT). She has been the team leader for LAP implementation sites, where she manages day-to-day operations of the Demonstration Initiative, provides technical assistance and collaborates with culturally-specific resource centers. Her role has been expanded to provide technical assistance to sites interested in implementing the LAP throughout the country, as well as providing more intensive support to the agencies in Maryland that implement LAP. Alicia previously practiced family law in the Baltimore-metropolitan area for a private firm, and represented domestic violence victims in civil protection order matters for the Women’s Law Center of Maryland. While in law school, she worked for the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office, prosecuting child abuse crimes and clerking in the domestic violence unit.
She's Too Strong! Understanding the Intersections of Misogynoir, Domestic Violence, and Victimization
- Ayana Wallace, Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence
Ayana Wallace is one of MNADV’s new Project Managers on the Maryland training team, having recently transitioned from her position as Project Manager for MNADV’s national Lethality Assessment Program-Maryland Model (LAP). While on the LAP team, Ayana was responsible for managing several national sites on the implementation of the Lethality Assessment Program-Maryland Model (LAP) as part of the Domestic Violence Homicide Prevention Demonstration Initiative (DVHPDI), an Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) funded initiative that aims to measure domestic violence homicide prevention in selected sites nationwide. Ayana graduated from Dickinson College with her Bachelor’s degree in Women’s and Gender Studies and minors in English, History, and Creative Writing. She went on to obtain her Master’s degree in Women’s and Gender Studies, with a concentration in Health and Sexuality, from Towson University. Throughout her time at Towson University, Ayana focused her area of research on violence in community of color, specifically intimate partner violence, sexual violence and reproductive coercion, and medicalized racism. While completing her Master’s program, she interned at the House of Ruth Maryland in Baltimore, Maryland and upon graduation worked for several years as a Client Case Coordinator at the domestic violence shelter in Montgomery County, MD. Ayana considers herself to be a womanist and aims to always be intersectional in her approach and to highlight the experiences of victims who have been marginalized.
Raising the Bar: Specializing Services for Survivors of Human Trafficking
- Amelia Rubenstein, MSW, LCSW-C, Child Sex Trafficking Victims Initiative (CSTVI) at the University of Maryland School of Social Work
Amelia Rubenstein, MSW, LCSW-C is the Clinical Research Specialist with the Child Sex Trafficking Victims Initiative (CSTVI) and an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland School of Social Work. Ms. Rubenstein works to assist the state’s child serving agencies in addressing sex trafficking among system-involved youth. She previously co-founded the Anti-Trafficking Program at TurnAround, Inc., a victim services non-profit in Baltimore, where she provided clinical services to survivors of human trafficking. Ms. Rubenstein received her Bachelors of Social Work from Skidmore College and a Masters of Social Work from Columbia University with a concentration in public policy and reproductive rights.
- Nadine Finigan-Carr, Ph.D., University of Maryland School of Social Work
Nadine M Finigan-Carr, Ph.D., is a prevention research scientist focused on the application of behavioral and social science perspectives to research on contemporary health problems, especially those that disproportionately affect people of color. Her scholarship is grounded in theories and methods found primarily in the field of health behavior change among individuals and the environments that support or impede chronic disease prevention or management, injury, and violence. Currently, Dr. Finigan-Carr is the Assistant Director of the Ruth Young Center for Families and Children at the University of Maryland: School of Social Work where she leads the Prevention of Adolescent Risks Initiative (PARI). She is the Principal Investigator of research projects at both the state and federal levels designed to intervene with system involved youth – those in foster care or the juvenile justice system. These youth have a double vulnerability – adolescence, a critical stage marked by increased risk for negative social and behavioral outcomes including aggression and sexual risk behaviors; and, being removed from their families of origin.
Intimate Partner Violence in the Digital Age
- Alejandro Palacios, Technology Safety Specialist, National Network to End Domestic Violence
Alejandro began his career in domestic violence advocacy in September 2010 as a volunteer for De Colores Domestic Violence shelter, which serves primarily monolingual Spanish speaking survivors of domestic violence. In January 2011, Alejandro decided to become an intern lay legal advocate at De Colores. After the completion of his time as an intern, Alejandro started working part-time as a lay legal advocate, while also being a full-time student at Arizona State University School of Criminology and Criminal Justice. On September 2011, Alejandro became the first male lay legal advocate at De Colores in 25 years. While working as a legal advocate, he provided victims of domestic violence with resources and education on domestic violence, such as victims’ rights and information on the state’s victim compensation program. He also assisted victims in comprehending and developing a safety plan. In addition, Alejandro assisted survivors in self-petitioning under the VAWA process; as well as the U-Visa process.
Workshop Session 3 (2:10 pm – 3:35 pm)Understanding how to best serve immigrant Muslim women victims of domestic violence
- Irfana Anwer, Peaceful Families Project (Board Member)
Irfana Anwer was recently the Pakistan Program Associate at Inclusive Security, where she increased the capacity of women leaders to enhance peace and security so that they can take an active part in countering violent extremism in their country. Previously, Irfana was Director of the Language Access program at Ayuda, a legal services organization in Washington, DC. She also represented women in matters of humanitarian-based immigration law. Prior to her position at Ayuda, Irfana Director of the Family Law Division, at Karamah: Muslim Women Lawyers for Human Rights, an international human rights organization in Washington, DC. Irfana has worked for over 10 years on issues of interfaith dialogue, violence and gender in Muslim communities.
- Saba Ghori, Peaceful Families Project (Board Member)
Saba Ghori serves as the Board President of Peaceful Families Project, a non-profit organization based in the northern Virginia area dedicated to preventing domestic violence in the Muslim community through training and awareness raising. Saba also serves as Women for Women International’s Associate Director for Social Empowerment, where she guides implementation of WfWI’s social empowerment programming globally and is the primary point of contact for all technical, operational and policy issues related to WfWI’s social empowerment initiatives, including gender based violence prevention. Saba has overall responsibility for inspiring innovation, ensuring quality, seeking funding, overseeing grants, and encouraging learning on all areas related to social empowerment. Previously, Saba worked at the Department of State for more than 14 years as Senior South Asia Specialist and Violence Against Women Advisor and worked on rule of law, women’s rights, and human rights issues. Saba has invested her time as an advocate and Board Member of numerous anti-domestic violence organizations such as the Arkansas Shelter for Battered Women, Saheli, the Asian Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Resource Project, ASHA, and Peaceful Families Project.
Best Practices in Identifying the Primary Aggressor
- Jennifer Morton, Calvert County State’s Attorney’s Office
Jennifer Morton received her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from Bowie State University in 1993, her Juris Doctor degree from Widener University School of Law in 1998, and her Master in Criminal Justice from University of Massachusetts Lowell in 2017. She has been a member of the Maryland bar since 1998. Jennifer has been a prosecutor in the Calvert County State’s Attorney’s Office for over 16 years and has worked in the domestic violence field since 2003. She currently serves as supervisor of the domestic violence unit in the Calvert County State’s Attorney’s office and prosecutes all felony domestic violence related crimes. Jennifer has also served as a trainer for law enforcement and other criminal justice professionals in both Maryland and Virginia in the areas of criminal law and procedure, liability, and intimate partner violence. She currently teaches as an adjunct Assistant Professor in the behavioral sciences department at University of Maryland University College. Jennifer has attended numerous specialized trainings in intimate partner violence and served as Chair of the Calvert County Domestic Violence Fatality Review Team from 2007-2011 and Vice Chair of the Calvert County Domestic Violence Fatality Review Team from 2014 through the present.
Lifting Our Voices: Agency Listening Sessions for Staff and the Community
- Jesus Rivera, House of Ruth Maryland
Jesús was a missionary in Latin America for 14 years and worked with many of the people who could no longer stay in their small towns due to lack of work, health care and educational opportunities. He taught Latino men preparing for ministry and leadership positions in their communities. He also worked in the United States with the Latino community and as Executive Director of Latino Providers Network he helped organize and connect providers who serve the Latino community in Baltimore. Presently, he coordinates the Spanish speaking office at the House of Ruth Maryland with a focus on client and children services and the Abuse Intervention Program.
- Erin Fox, House of Ruth Maryland
After earning a BA in Sociology and Gender and Women’s Studies from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Erin spent nearly 7 years with Hopeworks in the legal and residential programs. While there, Erin was a member of a taskforce established to integrate sexual assault and rape crisis services into Hopeworks core services. In the winter of 2012, Erin joined the House of Ruth Maryland’s Lethality Assessment Program as the Lead Outreach Specialist. Erin is currently the Contact Center Manager for HRM and co-chairs the LGBTQ committee. Erin in passionate about providing comprehensive, high quality contact to victims/survivors of IPV and harnessing the power of data to inform service provision. Erin is Baltimore’s resident Expert of Nothing, Women’s Studies edition and in their spare time Erin has the pleasure of performing with the Baltimore Improv Group, reads, and pursues a hobby level interest iLKn junk food.
- Sean Smith, House of Ruth Maryland
Giving New Hope to IPV Survivors: One Community’s Approach to Non-Fatal Strangulation
- Pamela Holtzinger, Frederick Memorial Hospital
Pamela Holtzinger over 29 years as an RN with a heavy concentration in Emergency Nursing, Forensic Nursing and nursing education. She coordinates the Frederick Memorial Hospital’s Forensic Nurse Services and offers regional and national trainings for nurses and other professionals. She also is employed with Frederick County Government as the Forensic Nurse Examiner at the Frederick County Child Advocacy Center. Ms. Holtzinger has served as a consult to the Maryland Board of Nursing on issues related to forensic nursing practice standards and has participated in the drafting of regulation for Maryland FNE practice including education of FNEs. She was appointed by the Governor to serve on several workgroups and commissions. Ms. Holtzinger has testified as an expert in regional court proceedings regarding issues of forensic nursing, sexual assault, physical assault, and child maltreatment. Ms. Holtzinger has received advanced training on the topic of near-fatal strangulation through the Institute on Strangulation Prevention in San Diego and has been consulted and testified as an expert on the topic. Ms. Holtzinger is currently completing a Doctorate in Nursing Practice.
- Theresa Hiegel, Frederick County Sheriff’s Office
Theresa Hiegel graduated from the University of Maryland at College Park with a Bachelors of Arts in Criminal Justice and Criminology and received a certificate from Hood College in Thanatology. Currently, she is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Crisis Response and Trauma. Theresa has worked for non-profit Heartly House, the Frederick County State’s Attorney’s Office and currently works for the Frederick County Sheriff’s as the Crisis Response Lead. Theresa is a certified instructor through the Maryland Police Training Commission and routinely conducts trainings for the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office, and partnering agencies as well as providing outreach and education to the Frederick County Community. In 2012, she was named as Frederick County Sheriff’s Office Civilian or the Year. And in 2013, she was named Civilian of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce in Frederick, MD. Theresa has received advanced training from the Institute on Strangulation Prevention in San Diego, CA.
Brain-Based and Body-Focused Interventions for Survivors of Trauma
- KerryAnn Aleibar, LCSW-C, ElderSAFE
KerryAnn Aleibar, LCSW-C, is the program manager at the ElderSAFE Center at Charles E. Smith Life Communities, the first shelter of its kind for abused older adults in the Washington, DC metro region. KerryAnn has over 15years of experience working with older adults in long-term care, senior housing, and adult day care settings. She has specialized knowledge and expertise in aging, supportive counseling, elder case management services, discharge planning, subacute care and physical rehabilitation. KerryAnn frequently educates community programs and agencies on elder abuse and the ElderSAFE Center.
- Chelsea Haverly, MSW, LCSW-C, Anchored Hope Therapy, LLC
Chelsea M. Haverly, MSW, LCSW-C is the co-founder of Anchored Hope Therapy, LLC, a private therapy practice in Annapolis, Maryland that specializes in the mental health treatment of complex trauma exposures. Her career started at the Center for Child and Family Traumatic Stress at Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore City, Maryland. She received her TF-CBT certification in 2015 and continues to seek certification to provide Dialectical Behavioral Therapy to adolescents and adults. Chelsea is an active member of the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, Victim Service Sub-committee. She also consults with local DSS jurisdictions and other service providers on best practices in assessing and treating survivors of trafficking and complex trauma.
- Cheryl Kravitz, APR, CFRE, RYT200, The Gentle Yogi
Cheryl Kravitz, APR, CFRE, RYT200, is a graduate of the Willow Street Yoga Teacher Training Program and received additional certification to teach yoga to survivors of trauma. She has taught yoga to members of the military, survivors of domestic violence, college students and at classes in Maryland and DC. Classes are infused with humor and compassion. Meeting people where they are on the mat and throughout life is Cheryl’s mantra. She learned early on that yoga is a universal language, and has found the practice resonates with the diversity of students she teaches. Cheryl teaches yoga to survivors and caregivers at ElderSafe. Her greatest joy is to see the positive effect that yoga has in the moment for survivors and the relaxation skills for caregivers as they move forward through their lives.