Summer Brantner M.A.
Summer Brantner is the Director of Project Rebound at Cal State LA, a program supporting the successful and meaningful reentry of formerly incarcerated scholars. Ms. Brantner prioritizes programming that supports students as they develop themselves personally while earning their degrees, understanding the benefits and impact of doing the inner work and having access to mental health services for formerly incarcerated men and women. Ms. Brantner earned an M.A. of Sociology in 2018, with a focus on teaching at the collegiate level and is pursuing a Doctorate in Educational Leadership at CSUB.
Larry Britton, Psy.D.
Dr. Larry Britton is a Clinical Forensic Psychologist and Adjunct Professor. Dr. Britton currently provides individual therapy, group therapy, crisis intervention, psychological testing, and court-ordered psychological evaluations. Dr. Britton also teaches various courses in the fields of criminal justice, sociology, and both clinical and forensic Psychology in the higher education sectors. His research interests include topics dealing with post-incarcerated individuals, homelessness, psychological testing, and violence.
Allen Burnett, M.A.
Allen Burnett is a member of Project Rebound at Cal State Los Angeles. After 28 years of incarceration, Mr. Burnett’s sentence of life without the possibility of parole was commuted by Gov. Gavin Newsom in 2019. Following his release in 2020, Mr. Burnett is now founder and director at the Prism Way, the lead consultant on inside education and resources with Parole Justice Works. Mr. Burnett is a member of Human Rights Watch's National Life Without Parole Leadership Council, as well as the Transformative In-Prison Workgroup Leadership Team. He has extensive experience leading and facilitating self-help programs geared toward cultivating insight, healing from trauma, and rehabilitation through writing. He is an accomplished public speaker and has published numerous articles. Mr. Burnett received an M.A. in Communication Studies, with emphasis in Organizational Communication, from California State University Los Angeles.
Blake Chow - Deputy Chief
Los Angeles Police Department
Deputy Chief Blake Chow was appointed to the Los Angeles Police Department in 1990 after having served as a San Jose Police Reserve Officer. After graduating from the LAPD Academy, Deputy Chief Chow rose through the ranks of Police Officer, Sergeant, Lieutenant, and Captain after working a variety of assignments including Patrol, Vice, Risk Management, and Operations Bureau, among others. As a Captain, Deputy Chief Chow was assigned commands such as Central Area, Hollenbeck Area, Real-Time Analysis and Critical Response Division (RACR), and LAX Field Services Division.
In December 2009 Deputy Chief Chow was promoted to Commander and assigned as the Assistant Commanding Officer, Operations-Central Bureau,. In October 2010 Commander Chow was transferred as the Assistant Commander Officer Counter Terrorism and Special Operations Bureau.
In March 2019, Deputy Chief Chow was promoted to his current position as Deputy Chief, Commanding Officer of Transit Services Bureau.
Deputy Chief Chow has a bachelor’s degree in business from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and a master’s in public administration from Cal State Fullerton.
Mr. Deloney is a dedicated member of the P.C.I.T.I Leadership and Instructional Team. He has spent the past few years of his life assisting in restoring besieged communities. Currently, he manages the Pico Guidance Center in Mid-City Los Angeles and provides services ranging from youth development, intervention/prevention sessions, mentoring, community feed- the-needs, and a host of others. His mission truly defines the work of providing hope, restoring communities, and curbing violence through proactive solutions and self-determination as it relates to the field of community violence intercession.
Maya Denola, LCSW
Ms. Denola is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who specializes in assisting organizations and individuals in implementing programs and training staff. Ms. Denola has served as a Criminal Mitigation Specialist and Sex-Offender Specific Treatment provider, which guides her multifaceted holistic approach. Her clinical training is multifaceted and combines cognitive, behavioral and somatic approaches. In addition to her consulting work, Ms. Denola is the owner of a small boutique private practice, providing psychotherapy services to survivors of complex trauma. She has served as a consultant to FOLA’s Registrant Employment Pilot for the past year.
Ms. Easter is a cult survivor turned abuse survivor advocate. She is the founder of Courage 365, a non-profit for abuse survivors, especially those abused in faith contexts. Her focus is helping people understand and avoid high control groups and heal from their toxic control mechanisms. Ms. Easter is also a life coach who helps people escape self-doubt and harness the science and practice of intuition so they can take control of their destinies.
Shadeiyah Edwards, Psy.D
Dr. Shadeiyah Edwards is a mother, speaker, psychology professor, author, corporate trainer, and entrepreneur. She utilizes her clinical/academic skills, and real-life experiences to train and mentor organizations, colleges, and agencies. She has over 18 years of experience in the mental health field. Dr. Edwards attended California State University, Long Beach where she majored in Criminal Justice. She then went on to earn her M.A. in Applied Forensic Psychology and Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Forensic Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology.
She has worked with all age groups within different populations. Dr. Edwards professional and educational background has afforded her the opportunity and experience to be exposed to diverse populations. Through her own self-awareness, knowledge of the culture and community of underserved populations, she provides a culturally supportive and trauma informed environment.
Corey Emanuel, PhD
Dr. Corey Emanuel is a media psychologist. He has been featured as a guest expert on the Tamron Hall Show, and he is a proud board member of the National Association of Black Journalists - L.A. (NABJLA). Dr. Corey is also the founder of the social movement, Men Talking Shift.
Tristin Engels, Psy.D.
Dr. Tristin Engels is the maternal granddaughter of Louis R. Vitullo, who co-invented the rape kit. Growing up just outside of Chicago, she spent every Sunday, holidays, and school vacations with her grandfather at his home in Cary, Illinois.
Dr. Engels was inspired by her grandfather’s life and accomplishments. In 2009, she moved to California to attend graduate school. In 2013, she completed her degree and became a Forensic Psychologist. She has worked with juveniles and adults within the criminal justice system, both incarcerated and on parole or probation. Dr. Engels now treats offenders with significantly long, violent, and sexually deviant histories with the aim of addressing maladaptive behavioral patterns, identifying undiagnosed mental illnesses, and ultimately reducing the risk of reoffending.
Crystal Flores Psy.D.
Dr. Flores earned her doctoral degree in Clinical Forensic Psychology at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. She has extensive experience working with individuals who have experienced a variety of challenges ranging from relationship issues to anxiety, depression, and trauma. Dr. Flores has lived in different areas throughout Southern California and in Mexico. As a result, she has been exposed to a wide range of cultures, lifestyles, and family make-ups, all of which have deeply strengthened the level of respect she has for people from all walks of life and influenced her work as a psychologist. Special areas of focus in her work include male trauma, working with undocumented individuals, and diversity.
Dr. Flores has worked in numerous settings including community mental health, a forensic hospital, a juvenile detention center, and forensic private practice. Dr. Flores has worked with individuals from many cultural backgrounds but has dedicated the majority of her career to working directly with the Latino population. Dr. Flores currently works at the Male Trauma Institute providing direct services in English and Spanish and is trained in conducting psychological evaluations, immigration evaluations, and medical-legal evaluations. Areas of her personal interest include mindfulness, expressive arts, and indigenous healing practices.
Ms. Frayre is a Mental Health Clinician within the Bullying and School Violence Advocacy Program at San Fernando Valley Community Mental Health Center. She obtained her Master’s degree in Marriage Family Therapy from California State University, Los Angeles. She has a passion for working with children and families. Her experience includes providing mental health therapeutic services to children as well as facilitating parenting groups within community agencies and school settings. She emphasizes the importance of strength-based and family-centered approaches.
Rachel Jennine Goudey, Psy.D., C-IAYT
Dr. Goudey is a certified yoga therapist, educator and Doctor of Clinical Psychology specializing in trauma work and embodied practices for nervous system integration. Working from an eclectic background in dance, performance art, somatic movement, psychology and yoga, Dr. Goudey helps clients increase their capacity for joy and love in life. Dr. Goudey began studying the human mind and emotions through the Western lens of psychology as a teen, and later through the practices of yoga and Eastern spiritual practices as part of her own healing journey through trauma "as a way to understand and heal myself, but more so because I wanted to offer a place for others to go to feel seen, heard, understood and held; a place I never fully felt I had until I discovered yoga."
Dr. Goudey brings nearly two decades of mental health experience working with at-risk and underserved populations, integrating Eastern and Western practices to help clients move past symptom relief into true healing. She has brought holistic, integrative yoga therapy programs and professional training on for mental health into community mental health centers, VA hospitals and schools throughout California. Dr. Goudey provides instruction and mentorship to International Yoga Therapy certification programs, and mentors and consults with teachers and mentors in schools on trauma and SEL.
Dr. Goudey’s aim is to guide individuals into states of peace and trust in their life’s story through the mind, body, and spirit while creating community, and bringing the teachings and practices of yoga as a therapy into various settings around the world. She is passionate about making healthcare more inclusive and holistic, while making these practices accessible to all. Dr. Goudey is the creator of an 8-week Integrative Yoga Therapy Skills and Support Group for Trauma, and co-creator of Healing our Healers: Self-Care for Healthcare Workers.
Alan Hamilton - Deputy Chief LAPD
Deputy Chief Alan Hamilton was born in Los Angeles and holds a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Management. He worked as an Officer in Patrol, Special Enforcement Group, CRASH, Vice, Prostitution Enforcement Detail, Field Training Officer and Burglary Auto Theft Division. As a Detective, he worked in Major Assault Crimes, CRASH, Homicide, Property Crimes Detail Coordinator and Auto Crimes Table Coordinator. As a Sergeant, he worked as a Patrol Supervisor, Assistant Watch Commander, Hollywood Vice Supervisor and Special Enforcement Unit (Gang) Supervisor. He later worked as a Lieutenant in Patrol, Gang Impact Team; Detective Commanding Officer and Burglary Task Force; and Assistant Commanding Officer of Scientific Investigation Division.
In 2014, Deputy Chief Hamilton was promoted to Captain and assigned as the Commanding Officer to West Valley Patrol Division and later assigned to Topanga Patrol Division. In this assignment, he and his officers mentored 18 police cadets through a training and preparedness regimen to complete the 2016 Los Angeles Marathon. Deputy Chief Hamilton then transferred to the Recruitment and Employment Division. He was instrumental in raising the sworn deployment above 10,000 for the first time in LAPD history. He was then assigned to the Force Investigation Division, where he was later promoted to Commander. He was then transferred to serve as the Assistant Commanding Officer of Operations-Valley Bureau in 2018. He was promoted to Deputy Chief in 2021 and is now assigned as the Commanding Officer of the Bureau.
Deputy Chief Hamilton has been a State of California Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Instructor Development Institute instructor for many years and was awarded the California POST Excellence in Instruction Award in 2003. He has also been a long-time member of the LAPD Mentor Program. In 2019, he was named the Los Angeles Woman Police Officers and Associates’ Mentor of the Year for his dedication and commitment to mentoring women. Deputy Chief Hamilton also oversaw the implementation of the Cyber Crime Consortium, a joint project between the LAPD, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, and the University of Southern California Viterbi Information Sciences Institute.
Deputy Chief Hamilton completed the State of California POST Robert Presley Institute of Criminal Investigation Certification in Homicide and Computer Crimes Investigations. He is a graduate of the Sherman Block Supervisory Leadership Institute, a graduate of the LAPD West Point Leadership Program, and completed the California POST Management Course. Deputy Chief Hamilton is an active participant in many departments athletic events, including the Baker to Vegas Challenge Cup Relay, the Los Angeles Police Revolver and Athletic Club Bench Press Contest and its Intradepartmental Basketball League.
Ms. Hawkins is a native of Louisiana and attended LSU where she completed a dual major, earning a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Bachelor of Arts in History. She went on to attend Louisiana Tech University earning a Master of Arts in History. Prior to the FBI, Ms. Hawkins worked as a high school educator in the DC area where she taught history and public speaking.
Ms. Hawkins has been with the FBI for 5 years and is currently assigned to the FBI Los Angeles Office of Public and Congressional Affairs as a Community Outreach Specialist, serving as the primary liaison for African American, Hispanic, and LGBTQ+ communities. In her role, she collaborates with faith-based and community organizations to bring awareness to issues impacting their respective communities while connecting communities and organizations to the FBI’s public resources and community engagement programs. She also works with a variety of youth engagement non-profit organizations, introducing youths to the FBI and the various career paths available.
Freelance writer and editor Christina Hoag is a former journalist for the Miami Herald and Associated Press. She reported from fourteen countries in Latin America for Time, Business Week, Financial Times, The New York Times, Sunday Times of London, and the Houston Chronicle, among other outlets. She is the co-author of Peace in the Hood: Working with Gang Members to End the Violence and has authored several crime novels, including Skin of Tattoos, Girl on the Brink, The Blood Room and Law of the Jungle. She has been a creative writing instructor at the state prison in Lancaster and to at-risk teen girls and facilitator of a domestic violence support group. More about her can be found at: www.christinahoag.com.
Barbra Jett is the Chief Operations Officer for Phenomenal Angels of the Community, an organization that provides youth support, mentoring and training opportunities that provide cultural enrichment, effective communication, civic engagement, educational enhancement, and individual development. Ms. Jett is responsible for the delivery and operations of the organization. Through her love for the community and potential to inspire change, Ms. Jett is on call twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. She is a trained experienced professional Intervention Specialist specializing in community service, crisis intervention, case management and street mediation. She has worked in the non-profit community for many years. Ms. Jett developed a strong sense of devotion to the non-profit sector when she noticed that a change was needed in the community in which she was raised. She has a deep appreciation for people and is diligent in working to improve the quality of life. Ms. Jett is an active member in her community. She is on the leadership team and an instructor for the Professional Community Intervention Training Institute. She is a member of the Neighborhood Action Committee and the Westmont/Athens Task Force. Currently, she is a case manager with Soledad Enrichment Action Charter School. Ms. Jett is a graduate of Washington Prep and studied at Los Angeles Southwest College. She is a certified graduate of the Professional Community Intervention Training Institute and has received certificates from the City of Los Angeles Mayor’s Office, City of Los Angeles Fire Department, Maximum Force Enterprises, The Chicago School of Psychology, Yuba College, Leo Chesney Center of Live Oaks, and Los Angeles Office of Education.
Alan Johnson M.A., LMFT, LAADC, CADCII
Alan Johnson earned his graduate degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University and is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and a Licensed Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counselor. He has received numerous awards for his service in the addiction field, including the George C. Cobb award, Hall of Fame Award, and the Dean of Fellow given by the California Certification Board of Alcohol and Drug Counselors.
Mr. Johnson has served as the President of the California Association of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors, helping develop and refine the certification and educational components of the organization to ensure the highest quality of counselors performing substance use disorder treatment. Mr. Johnson has decades of experience collaborating with agencies within the criminal justice system and managing a state contract to provide aftercare services to returning citizens. He continues to be a strong advocate for substance abuse counselors, and works diligently with legislators on the local, state and national levels to promote high standards and appropriate representation for the profession.
Steven Kim is co-founder of Project Kinship where he serves individuals impacted by gangs and incarceration. His commitment to healing cycles of incarceration, gang membership and community violence stems from over 15 years of working with trauma-impacted and abandoned lives throughout Orange County. Mr. Kim works in the field of forensic social work where he led multi-disciplinary teams to identify early childhood trauma on high-profile death penalty cases. He is sought out for his expertise on understanding root causes of violence and has facilitated training on the state and federal levels of the criminal justice system. He is on faculty at the University of Southern California lecturing on best practices that focus on adolescent gang prevention and intervention strategies.
Dr. Langi is from the San Francisco Bay Area and is of Tongan Polynesian heritage. Dr. Langi completed both her Doctorate and M.A. in Clinical Forensic Psychology from Alliant International University – California School of Forensic Studies in San Francisco, California. She has worked with the Acute Level of Care with California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, as well as the Department State Hospitals. She has also worked with CASOMB and sexually violent predators doing assessment and treatment. She is currently a Forensic Clinician at Santa Rita County Jail Facility in Dublin, California. Dr. Langi recently launched an integrative holistic practice where she is a Reiki Master and Certified Sound Healer.
Dr. Michael Levittan is an accomplished and recognized expert on domestic violence, anger management, child abuse, trauma and PTSD. He is a licensed psychotherapist, director of T.E.A.M., a state-certified batterers’ treatment program, serves as an expert witness in court, teaches seminars and courses at UCLA Extension, National Alliance on Mental Illness, International Conference on Violence, Abuse, and Trauma, L.A. Superior Court, Inter-Agency Council on Child Abuse and Neglect, California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, U.S. Marines, and women’s shelters.
His media work as an expert includes the Tyra Banks Show, ABC-TV News, Starting Over, Bad Girls Club, Montel Williams, Robert Irvine Show, Politico.com, Hollywood 411, and radio, on-line, and print publications. Dr. Michael wrote "The History of Infanticide," a chapter in “Violence in Our Society” and a chapter on domestic violence in “Her Story, His Story,” . He appears in the newly released documentary on parenting, "The Golden Opportunity of Child Development." He recently completed the soon-to-be-published “Essentials of Anger Management.” Dr. Levittan currently appears as a relationship expert on the “Frangela” TV show. As an executive board member of the National Partnership to End Interpersonal Violence Think Tank, he launched the Global Peace Committee in order to promote peaceful, humane solutions to societal problems. Recently, he has completed podcasts on “Fathers Raising Daughters,” the “Me Too” movement, and “Gender Expectations in the 21st Century.” Dr. Levittan is currently a leader in the gun violence prevention movement.
Taffany Lim Ed.D
Dr. Taffany Lim is the founding Executive Director of Cal State LA’s Center for Engagement, Service, and the Public Good where she oversees university initiatives that engage the campus and community in the promotion of the public good. Dr. Lim specializes in program development, project management, planning, training, and facilitation. She has spent more than 25 years of her career working with the public sector and nonprofit organizations including United Way, KCET Public Television, the Los Angeles Department of Mental Health, and the City of Pasadena’s Public Health Department. Dr. Lim has a BA in psychology and social welfare from UC Berkeley, a Master’s in public administration from USC, and her doctorate in educational leadership from Fresno State.
James “Blue” Marks
James Marks is a proud father of four who began his career by having to work his way up from the bottom. He watched his single mother and became inspired by her strength to work two jobs to support the family. This impression Mr. Marks with no excuses to achieve great things. He became recognized for building a reputation and becoming a man of strong influence in his community. Mr. Marks is a community developer who has dedicated his life to seeing the revitalization and self-empowerment of communities and believes that networking is the key to building a strong community foundation.
After Mr. Marks was approached by a young man named Calvin Broadus, aka “Snoop Dogg,” he was mentioned frequently in Snoop Dogg’s rap lyrics, referenced as “Blue.” While working with Snoop Dogg and coaching football at Long Beach Polytechnic High School, Mr. Marks realized the power of influence and how sports and entertainment celebrities impact the lives of others. Mr. Marks saw how his personal relationships with entertainers and athletes could be utilized to facilitate his true passion for helping others by uplifting and restoring communities. Mr. Marks organized and participated in various community events such as life skills/football camps, speaking engagements and presentations, Walk to Fight Obesity, cancer awareness at Boys and Girls Clubs, and schools.
The relationships Mr. Marks fostered with educators, scholars, business professionals, athletes, government officials and entertainers, which he calls the “Dream Maker’s Dream Team,” have allowed him to complete several achievements. These achievements include becoming a certified first responder with the Los Angeles Fire Department, working with professional sports agents as a mentor to their athletes, serving as director of operations and board member for Camp Go Hard Los Angeles, and receiving certification from the Professional Community Intervention Training Institute. With the support of his mentor Aquil Basheer, Mr. Marks started Konnectink, a brand development and professional advisory service that helps individuals maximize and capitalize on their talent through philanthropy and strategic partnerships. Mr. Marks is also an advocate for educating others about trauma and increasing awareness about how trauma occurs in underserved communities. His story has been featured in the book “Barbra and My Boys: Life Stories of Change, Community and Purpose.”
Denise Maupin is an accomplished activist, motivational speaker, entrepreneur, and CEO of multiple businesses, one of which is Never II Late. She is also the author of an inspirational book based on her life called “Crack'n the Chains.” She is a leading figure in the recovery community and has been in recovery and sober for 23 years. Ms. Maupin has overcome a life of drugs and incarceration, homelessness, physical, sexual abuse, and kidnappings. After leaving prison in 1999, she made a commitment to making a lasting change in her own life. Ms. Maupin went back to school and obtained a master’s degree in social work at the University of Southern California. Told she had only 6 months to live, she fought back and survived multiple bouts of cancer. Denise lives by the motto, “my purpose must be bigger than me and my life story as an example of how one can overcome adversity and build a better future”. Through her businesses and activism, continued education and perseverance, Ms. Maupin has dedicated her life to giving back to others. She is now a therapist, a mentor, sponsor and most importantly, a survivor.
Bill Murray is the founder of multiple organizations that have been assisting the Southern California community for years. One of those organizations is the National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse, a grassroots organization that fights against child abuse and trauma on a national stage. Mr. Murray also is the founder of the National Association of Alert and Concerned Citizens and the Los Angeles Community Policing organization. Mr. Murray works diligently with these organizations to prevent child abuse and trauma since he is a child abuse survivor himself. He is also a producer, director, editor, and writer for over 30 years with careers in both film/TV and journalism.
Seconde Nimenya is the author of five books, including her most recent, "Unlocking Diversity: How to Create Inclusive Cultures in a World of Differences," a timely and thought-provoking book that challenges assumptions and the status quo on the topics of race, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and our communities.
Ms. Nimenya has spent more than a decade as a thought leader on diversity and inclusion in a world of differences. Through her leadership development programs, she advocates for diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace, education, and communities. She uses her varied educational and multicultural background to inspire and empower her audiences and is considered a noted motivational speaker in her field.
She has received several awards, including an international book award for her memoir, "Evolving Through Adversity," a story of her life journey in which she shares the life lessons she has learned to inspire others to overcome challenges in life.
Ms. Nimenya is a TEDx speaker on race and culture identity and has appeared in various media outlets. Her TEDx talk titled, “We Are Not All that Different” continues to inspire people worldwide. Her topics of expertise include Diversity and Inclusion in a World of Differences, Cultural Competence and Employee Engagement, Personal and Professional Leadership Development, and Evolving Through Adversity.
Barbara Pavlo, Psy.D.
Dr. Pavlo received her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology from Ryokan College, her Master’s degree from Pepperdine University, and her bachelor’s degree from Brooklyn College. She completed her pre-doctoral training at The Rape and Sexual Abuse Center, treating trauma victims. During her time at both Lancaster State Prison and California City Correctional Facility, a federal prison, Dr. Pavlo treated inmates and corrections personnel. Dr. Pavlo continues to present at the Prostitution Diversion Program (PDP), helping rehabilitate over 3,700 men since 2008.
Dr. Pavlo was hired by the Los Angeles Police Department as a police psychologist in 2006, where she provides clinical services and training to law enforcement and their families. Additionally, she presently serves as a consultant to the SWAT Crisis Negotiation Team and orchestrates organizational discourse to the LAPD command staff. Dr. Pavlo has spearheaded a variety of psychology and law enforcement related presentations throughout the country.
Cynthia Perez, LCSW
Cynthia Perez is an inner child hype woman who has curated 5 educational courses approved by CAMFT and Latinx Therapy for restorative social justice mental health training. Ms. Perez leads joy-centered workshops and interactive groups with her curated frameworks highlighting inner child healing and IS intergenerational healing.
Josue "Swey" Pineda
Josue (Swey) Pineda has been a youth advocate since 2018. His work as an abolitionist started after he was facing 23 years to life in prison at the age of 19 in 2017. Post-incarceration, Mr. Pineda has been a mentor for youth both in the juvenile hall and re-entering the community. Through his work with Resilience Orange County, Mr. Pineda has mentored and created curriculums centered around youth development for formerly incarcerated youth. From 2020 through 2022, Mr. Pineda was a youth mentor and case manager for formerly incarcerated youth where he assisted with re-entry services, job placement, peer-to-peer mentoring, and enrollment into higher education. Mr. Pineda is an artist and host of “Not in Isolation: Voices of Youth,” a podcast that centers on the experience of youth who have been placed in solitary confinement. This is part of a nationwide campaign, Stop Solitary for Kids. Currently, Mr. Pineda is the lead case manager and youth reentry coordinator with Hoops 4 Justice, a non-profit organization that serves currently and formerly incarcerated youth. He is certified in Seeking Safety (group and individual therapy that addresses substance abuse and PTSD) and serves as a young adult advisor through the ACEs Aware Initiative.
P.C.I.T.I Leadership Team
Mr. Anthony Porter is a man truly dedicated to changing the state of his community from violence to peace. Once a part of the gang problem, he is now part of the solution. His unwavering support of this work encompasses what it means to conduct gang intervention. Mr. Porter is a member of the P.C.I.T.I Leadership Team and has utilized his personal transformation to uphold the creed of restoring hope and effecting positive change in his community.
Stephany Powell, Ed.D
Dr. Stephany Powell joined the National Center on Sexual Exploitation in 2020 and is the Vice President and Director of Law Enforcement Training and Survivor Services. In this role Dr. Powell is responsible for providing training and education to law enforcement agencies across the country. Her expertise in sexual exploitation, labor trafficking, sex trafficking and child abuse was gained over the course of her 30-year career with the Los Angeles Police Department as a sergeant in charge of a vice unit.
Following her retirement from the LAPD, Dr. Powell was appointed to lead JourneyOut, an LA-based nonprofit assisting victims of human trafficking out of violence, abuse, and trauma due to sexual exploitation or forced prostitution. Under her leadership, JourneyOut grew in both size and scope and today serves more than 360 people a year as they take the first steps to freedom.
Dr. Powell’s passion and expertise in this field has translated into new policies for the Los Angeles Fire Department and the national massage school industry. She has led education and awareness workshops for various audiences of law enforcement, prosecutors, and communities, throughout the country and internationally. Dr. Powell is certified by the California Police Officer Standards and Training to teach advance law enforcement training courses.
In 2019 she had the distinct privilege of training the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service on human trafficking awareness, prevention, and prosecution. Dr. Powell spoke before the California Congressional Legislative committee in the state Capitol and addressed the Texas Legislative Black Caucus in Austin. As a result of her education practices and police service, two flags have been flown in her honor, one over the U.S. Capitol and the other in Dover, in recognition of her contributions.
Since 2013 she has educated more than 11,000 law enforcement, first responders, community leaders, school administrators and many others across the country.
Dr. Powell is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Behavioral Science at Los Angeles Trade Technical College as well as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Southern California (USC). Dr. Powell’s expertise on race and law enforcement has been showcased in documentaries, local newspapers, and magazines. She has most recently been highlighted in the PBS documentary “And Still I Rise” by Dr. Henry Louis Gates. Dr. Powell has also been featured on HLN Chris Cuomo for her expertise in Human Trafficking. She recently authored a human trafficking workbook for teens, “My Choice, My Body, My Rules,” available on Amazon. The workbook is currently being used on a national and international level. She is the contributing author for the textbook “Teaching Beautiful Brilliant Black Girls, Girl Trafficking Misunderstood: Understanding the Commercially Sexually Exploited African American Girl,” available through Corwin Press and Amazon.
Jose Ramos is a student advisor with a caring and empathetic personality who is dedicated to helping students achieve their vision of success during essential moments of their lives. Mr. Ramos earned his Bachelor’s degree in business administration in 2020 and is a graduate of Project Rebound California State University, Los Angeles. Mr. Ramos is a system-impacted student advisor for Project Rebound, which aims to increase access and opportunity to higher education for marginalized and justice involved students.
Kashira Rodgers Psy.D.
Dr. Kashira Rodgers is a forensic psychologist. She addresses diverse topics including gang intervention, human trafficking, violence against all genders, sexual assault and mental health. Dr. Rodgers currently provides individual therapy, group therapy, crisis intervention and court- ordered psychological evaluations. Awarded the Distinguished Service Award from the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department Vital Intervention and Directional Alternatives (VIDA) program, Dr. Rodgers is also the F=founder of Facing Our Facts, a community agency providing individual counseling and support groups for survivors of sexual assault, human trafficking, domestic violence, adults molested as children and victims of violent crimes. Dr. Rodgers has devoted her life’s work to addressing trauma in the African American community and at-risk youth.
Madeline Rodriguez proudly serves Project Kinship as the director of programs where she supports and directs effective programs and multi-disciplinary teams focused on supporting and training lives impacted by incarceration, gangs, community violence, and trauma. With years of clinical and leadership experience, Ms. Rodriguez is known for her commitment to culturally competent, community-based behavioral and mental health services for children, youth and adults. Ms. Rodriguez is passionate about bringing to fruition the mission and vision of Kinship, creating a world where hope lives and the cycle of despair ends. She is also an adjunct faculty member at Antioch University, co-founder and licensed marriage and family therapist for Simply Hope private practice and actively pursuing her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology to further her expertise in trauma and mood disorders.
Mr. Raymond Sanchez is director of peer navigation and outreach at Project Kinship. Since 2014 Mr. Sanchez has been serving and giving back to the community by providing opportunities for system impacted individuals to lead peer navigation, mentorship, and living hope that transformation and healing are possible. A current CSFU student, soon to be graduate, and applying to a master’s program, Mr. Sanchez is helping to lead community expertise and behavioral health holistic care services to those who need it the most.
Raymond Sheppard is a formerly incarcerated undergrad student at Cal State LA and a member of Project Rebound. He was recently placed on the honor roll and awarded a certificate for his contribution to the community. While incarcerated, Mr. Sheppard helped other system-impacted individuals find healing from their trauma by creating a self-help course called Think Tank, specifically designed to help people heal from childhood trauma and the long-lasting effects of not resolving it and the potential to suffer from arrested development if not addressed. Since his release, Mr. Sheppard has pursued his personal growth and development through higher education and participating in groups that specialize in narrative therapy and healthy relationships.
Cindy Shortt MA, LPCC
Ms. Cindy Shortt is a licensed psychotherapist who has maintained a private practice in holistic, trauma-informed psychotherapy and counseling since 2017. Prior to establishing a private practice, she accrued over 20 years of experience as a high school and middle school counselor and clinical therapist interacting with youth and families in urban and suburban areas of California and Connecticut. She is also a sandplay therapist and registered yoga teacher.
Charleen Sterns, MA
Ms. Stearns is a second-generation Cambodian American. Her parents are refugees from Cambodia who owned a donut shop for many years before retiring in early 2019. She grew up in Dublin and San Ramon, CA, graduating from California High School in 2001. From there Ms. Stearns earned her Associates Degree at DiabloValley College in Pleasant Hill before transferring to California State Polytechnic University,Pomona. Upon earning her Bachelor of Arts degree, she enrolled at Argosy University, Orange County where she earned her Master’s degree in Forensic Psychology and completed her internship for the Orange County Public Defender’s office as a victim advocate. Throughout her career, Ms. Stearns has worked in full-service partnership programs working with parole, probation, the severely mentally ill, substance-use outpatient and inpatient programs, behavioral health court, drug court, and diversion court. For the last 7 years Ms. Stearns worked with Alameda County’s Adult Forensic Behavioral Health department, first as a Mental Health Specialist within the collaborative courts program and then as Rehabilitation Counselor at Santa Rita Jail in Dublin where she also piloted the re-entry unit and the Behavioral Health Housing Unit.
Mr. Jeff Stein overcame adverse early childhood events, addiction, and incarceration through therapy and self-help groups while developing a spiritual pulse. A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity along with support helped him to earn Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at Cal State LA. Mr. Stein currently serves as the Outreach Coordinator at Project Rebound Cal State LA and is the Director of Community Relations at The Prism Way.
Ms. Mary Weaver was initially exposed to the criminal justice service while performing community service at Friends Outside in Los Angeles County (Friends Outside). She was deeply touched by the kind treatment she received and, offered a job in 1988, Ms. Weaver accepted eagerly. She became the executive director in 1990.
Ms. Weaver initiated Friends Outside’s research project about registrants resulting in a community summit in 2020. She has served on a number of Boards of Directors and on several panels, including for the Child Welfare League of America, California Jail Programs, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Aspen Institute. She has participated in research projects, including the Released Aging Prisoners Project, in collaboration with Independence at Home, a division of SCAN Health Plan, and Examining the Needs of Adult Family and Close Ties of Incarcerated Persons in Los Angeles, in collaboration with the University of California, Los Angeles. The latter resulted in the publication of a book for which she co-authored a chapter. In 2012, Mary was named a Fatherhood Hero by the White House, Office of Public Engagement/Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
Ms. Weaver graduated from Indiana University with a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature. She continues to be inspired by clients and colleagues she meets through her work and systemic injustices.
Ms. Kate Wedell is the founder of CherishedLA. A survivor of human trafficking, Ms. Wedell spent a decade in the commercial sex industry after being sold by someone she trusted. Ms. Wedell has now found freedom and healing. She started CherishedLA to support other survivors who needed a way out. Kate has spent the last 10 years as a voice in the anti-trafficking movement. She created CherishedLA to provide a nonjudgmental environment for women, including a safe place to live for 2 years while learning job skills and healing from the trauma of exploitation.
Ms. Wedell has completed Cert 1 and Cert 2, the Externship, and Recovery Week of Narrative Focused Trauma Care through the Allender Center at the Seattle School of Theology and Psychology, receiving 2 certificates in Narrative Focused Trauma Care coaching. She leads story workshops with survivors and is passionate to stay on the healing journey for herself and for the sake of others. Passionate about counseling those with trauma and helping them name the truth about their story and find their freedom, Kate continues her training in NFTC through workshops and training with the Allender Center and The Art of Living Counseling Center.
Roxanne Wright, Psy.D.
Dr. Roxann Wright received her Doctorate of Clinical Forensic Psychology from The Chicago School of
Professional Psychology – Los Angeles in 2018. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology for
the Helping Professions and a Master’s in Forensic Psychology. She has worked as a therapist at Ness
Counseling Center, a non-profit for court ordered and voluntary low SES clients and San Fernando Valley Mental Health Centers for Older Adults FCCS providing mental health care for 55+. She holds a position on the clinical team at Valley Mountain Regional Center in Stockton, Modesto, and San Andreas evaluating the eligibility of the developmentally disabled populations for services and providing competency court evaluations for developmentally disabled populations. Dr. Wright additionally works at the Psychology Assessment Resource Center in Rocklin, CA, providing psychological assessments/evaluations for forensic, educational, immigration, diagnostic, and treatment purposes as well as working with therapy clients dealing with trauma, abuse, and mental health disorders.
Ms. Wright is a highly accomplished professional who has made a significant career transition from being a Fortune 500 data and DEI executive to becoming a certified life and wellness coach. She is the founder of two ventures, Jet Set Coaching & Wellness and Jet Set Wellness Goods. With her extensive experience and expertise in both the corporate and wellness domains, she is well-equipped to provide individuals with the necessary tools and guidance to navigate significant life transitions and achieve success and wellness in all aspects of their lives.
Ms. Wright is a firm believer that everyone has the potential to succeed and lead a fulfilling life. As a result, she is passionate about empowering her clients to achieve their goals and dreams. Her coaching approach is highly personalized, and she works closely with each of her clients to develop a customized plan that meets their unique needs. She also plans to launch on-demand online courses this spring to reach as many people as possible.
Ms. Wright also has passion for art. Her digital art pieces can be found under her pseudonym, California Zee. When she isn't working, she can be found spending time with her partner and their newly blended family, hiking, learning new things or trying new experiences.
Ann Young -M.A., Retired Captain, LAPD
Captain Ann Young retired from the Los Angeles Police Department on July 13, 2016, after a 35-year career. Captain Young was appointed to the department in 1981. She promoted to include Police Officer III (Training Officer) in 1984. She worked as an undercover narcotics officer before being promoted to the rank of Detective in 1988. As a detective she worked 77th Area, Juvenile Division (Abused Child Unit), Robbery Homicide Division (Rape Special Section) and Internal Affairs Division. Young was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 1991. During that assignment, she was assigned as a field supervisor in the Central Area. She transferred to South Traffic Division after her probationary period as a sergeant had ended. She was upgraded to Sergeant II and was assigned to the Tactical Planning Section in charge of Special Events. In 1995, Captain Young was promoted to Lieutenant. Her assignments included Hollywood Area, Pacific Area, and Transit Group. In March of 1999, she promoted to Lieutenant II and was assigned as the Commanding Officer of Operations Support Division, Van Nuys Area. In 2000 Captain Young was promoted to Captain and became the first African American woman to be promoted to the rank of Captain in the history of the LAPD. In 2002, Captain Young was promoted to Captain II and assigned to the South Traffic Division. As a captain, she worked in the Central Traffic Division and Detective Support and Vice Division. Her last assignment was the Central Traffic Division.
Captain Young earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Kinesiology at the University of California, Los Angeles. She earned a teaching credential from the University of California, Irvine. Captain Young earned a Master’s degree in Education from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Captain Young is a 1998 graduate of the FBI National Academy of Law Enforcement in Quantico, Virginia. She is also a graduate of the West Point Leadership Program and Supervisory Leadership Institute.
KEYNOTE SPEAKER 7/21
Chief Robert N. Arcos is a passionate advocate for community policing and youth development programs. Currently, he serves as the Chief of the Bureau of Investigation (BOI), the county’s fourth largest law enforcement agency supporting the largest prosecutorial agency in the country. Prior to his appointment as chief, he served for 33 years with the Los Angeles Police Department, retiring in January 2021 as the Assistant Chief, Office of Operations. Chief Arcos’s positions and assignments included Deputy Chief, Operations-Central Bureau, serving as the citywide Immigrant Affairs Liaison for the Chief of Police and the Department’s Homeless Coordinator and Smart Policing Coordinator. Chief Arcos served in every bureau in the city and has created lasting relationships with neighborhood advocates, non-profit organizations, the business community, and civic leaders, as well as creating and fostering model community/police youth development programs such as Through Our Eyes and 77th Street Area Youth Soccer Program.
Chief Arcos earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from Union Institute and University, a Master's degree in Organizational Leadership from Woodbury University, a Master’s Degree in Executive Leadership at the Sol Price School of Public Policy, University of Southern California, and a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) certificate from Cornell University. He is a member of the California Police Chiefs Association, International Association of Chiefs of Police, FBI National Academy Associates, the Police Executive Research Forum, the Latin America Law Enforcement Association (La Ley) and the Hispanic American Police Command Officers Association. Chief Arcos is a Board Member of Operation Progress, a non-profit organization devoted to empowering underserved youth to become educated, ethical, and productive adults who reach their potential and positively contribute to society.
Ms. Acosta was born to parents who migrated from Mexico and was raised in the Northeast Los Angeles area. Dulce began her academic journey within various LAUSD academic institutions, and at the age of seventeen she successfully completed high school and received vocational certification in the health field. She entered the competitive workforce at the age of nineteen. Dulce became employed by University of Southern California Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry, where she currently administrates online education.
Dulce pledged to continue her academic career and returned ten years later to ELAC and received her Associate Degree in Liberal Arts and Certification as a Recovery Specialist in Chemical Dependency. Dulce transferred to Cal State University Los Angeles in the fall of 2009, where she received her B.A. in Sociology with an emphasis in Diversity and Inequalities in 2011. While attending CSULA, she also served as a peer advisor in the Sociology Department. She was recognized for her contributions to CSULA and her community by her advisor and received a Special Congressional Recognition by Congresswoman Lucille Roybal Allard in March 2011. In addition, she was awarded and recognized in the “Latinas to Watch for 2012” by Hispanas Organized for Political Equality (HOPE). She pursued her lifelong dream of a Master’s in Social Work at the University of Southern California, where in May 2014, she completed her studies and was awarded the Order of Arête of USC; she was selected from more than 1,500 graduate students university wide. The award represents the highest honor accorded graduate students upon completion of their academic program. Students are recognized for demonstrating significant depth and scope of responsibility in a campus or community leadership role. Members of the Order of Arête uphold value and meaning over individual achievement. Dulce is committed to strengthening and empowering her community by serving as a mentor and sharing her journey and narrative of resilience and trauma.
Committed to restoring peace in traumatized and violent-prone communities, Tommie has re-dedicated his life to community restoration. He is an abundance of positivity in the lives of youth and young adults he touches. He is a member of the Instructional and Leadership Team of P.C.I.T.I and also coaches, speaks, and gives every bit of himself to his community and those in need.
KEYNOTE SPEAKER 7/20