Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition

Search this site:

 
Who We Are
What We Do
Get Involved
Resources for Those Affected
CCJRC Publications
Outside Research
Voting Project
Legislative Info
Pressroom



Board Member and Staff Bios

Staff Bios




Christie Donner
Director
christie@ccjrc.org
Christie Donner is CCJRC's Executive Director and founder. She has over fifteen years of experience working in criminal justice reform advocacy, community organizing, policy research, and lobbying. Christie co-authored Parenting from Prison: A Resource Guide for Incarcerated Parents in Colorado. She is also the co-author of CCJRC's publication Getting On After Getting Out: A Re-Entry Guide for Colorado. She has a bachelor's degree in political science from the University of Colorado, Boulder.



Pamela Clifton
Communications Coordinator
pam@ccjrc.org
Pam Clifton is CCJRC's Communication Coordinator. She studied psychology and sociology at the University of Colorado and University of Washington. Pam joined the staff at CCJRC because of her desire to see drug laws changed, parole laws reformed, and the warehousing of people in Colorado stopped. She has spent the last four years working as a supervisor for a local fundraising organization that raised money for many non-profit and political organizations around the country. She served seven years in prison in Colorado for a minor drug conviction and successfully completed parole in 2005.


Juston Cooper
Juston L Cooper
CCJRC Deputy Director
juston@ccjrc.org

Juston L. Cooper, M.P.A. is a native of Denver Colorado, he holds a Masters in Public Administration from the University of Colorado at Denver and a Bachelors of Science in Business marketing from Metropolitan State University. He has a proven record of success with State and local elected officials in political engagement strategy, policy planning and development, organizational development, increasing revenue, collaboration and coalition building, facilitation, strategic planning and management. He has been instrumental to the public sector in addressing criminal reform and has an extended career with non-profit agencies committed to systems integration, juvenile justice and youth intervention initiatives.  He has made serving the children of our great state a priority in his career.  He’s committed to bring together state and city departments and partner agency leadership to align programs, services and investments to best serve Colorado’s underserved communities. Specifically, he focuses on promoting leadership, education and advocacy for justice.




Ellen Toomey-Hale
Finance & Development Director
ellen@ccjrc.org
Ellen Toomey-Hale is CCJRC's Finance & Development Coordinator. She received her Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice and her law degree from Temple University Law School. She served for three decades in Colorado's juvenile justice system as a probation officer, deputy district attorney, guardian ad litem, defense counsel, and district court magistrate. She was an adjunct professor at the University of Northern Colorado, Aims Community College, and the Aims Police Academy. She has expertise in child welfare and co-authored, with CCJRC's Executive Director, Parenting from Prison: A Resource Guide for Incarcerated Parents which was published in 2001. She has volunteered with Kairos Prison Ministry at the Denver Women's and Sterling Correctional Facilities. She has an extensive background in nonprofit development, served on many international mission teams, and still believes one person can change the world. She is a passionate child advocate who is intent on improving Colorado's criminal justice system.

CCJRC Board of Directors

Dani Haraburda, President, Denver, Colorado is a private attorney in Denver, practicing criminal defense and is the current Board President. She worked in the office of the Colorado Public Defender for nearly 7 years and has called Denver home for the last 19. She began her foray into the non-profit world while still in college as a board member for the Colorado Legal Initiatives Project, an organization dedicated to impact litigation for the GLBT community, and grew in her love for advocacy over the years. She has volunteered with The Sacred Heart House, Mi Casa, the Colorado Progressive Coalition and as a mock trial coach at Aurora Central High School. She joined the board of CCJRC in 2009, served as the 2011-2012 vice chair, and looks forward to taking over as board president this coming January, 2013.

She likes walking to work with her little dog, gardening, riding her scooter and feeding her friends. She loves her mom and her partner, representing indigent clients through the Alternate Defense Counsel, the phrase "not guilty," and shutting down prisons. She fancies herself a sharp dresser, but usually needs to use the lint roller before attending court to remove Jack Russell and Persian fur from her jacket. She knows no fear.

Joe Mauro, Denver, Colorado joined the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition in January 2005. He joined CCJRC because of his passion for solutions to mass incarceration, the need for successful and long-lasting re-entry for parolees, and the need for reform of our convoluted our criminal justice system. He wants his participation on the CCJRC Board of Directors to make a positive difference on providing justice for all Coloradans. Joe joined the CCJRC Freedom Fighters in 2007, finding it a convenient way to give on a monthly basis. Joe manages his own business, JFM Consulting LLC, consulting with non-profit groups to increase their capacity for fund raising of all types. He also serves as president of the alumni association board of directors of his undergraduate alma mater, Fort Lewis College, and is re-joining the Board of Howard Dental Center, an HIV/AIDS oral health care organization. Joe is a 15 year resident of the Whittier neighborhood in northeast Denver. He is an avid gardener, a beekeeper, and enjoys the diversity and community of northeast Denver.

Mardy Wilson, Denver, Colorado A long-standing interest in human rights led her to the ACLU of Colorado in 1999. She served on the Education Committee, helping to establish the Youth Education program, revamp the volunteer program, while working on many event committees. Mardy came to CCJRC in 2006 as a new board member, where she served as secretary. Mardy continues to serve on the board, work on fundraising events, while hoping to increase volunteer opportunities. She joined CCJRC's "Freedom Fighter" program in 2007, giving ongoing financial support to CCJRC's efforts to change the face of the Colorado criminal justice system; hoping the message "Educate, Not Incarcerate" will continue to grow and impact us all.

Mardy is actively involved in living well with MS; which she has had in her life for the past 36 or so years. Classical music, jazz, reading, growing culinary and healing herbs, her love of food and cooking help to round out her personal time.

Mardy grew up in east Denver. She has been living in the east Highlands for the past 20 years.

Lisa Raville, Secretary, Boulder, Colorado is the Executive Director of the Harm Reduction Action Center, located in a small day shelter in Denver. The Harm Reduction Action Center educates, empowers, and advocates for the health and dignity of Metro-Denver's injection drug users. The Harm Reduction Action Center was instrumental in the passing of the May 2010 syringe exchange legislation. Past work experiences that brought Lisa to her dream job include working as an AmeriCorps member at a CA syringe exchange, an overnight homeless shelter coordinator, training workshops for ex-offenders, and a former campaign manager for a County Supervisor. Passions include, in her spare time, community advocacy, political organizing, reproductive rights, prisoner rights activism, social justice, syringe exchange, homeless rights, ex-offender literacy, and voter registration coordination specifically targeting former felons, the homeless, and women. Originally from Chicago, Lisa holds a Bachelors Degree in Communications & Women's Studies from DePaul University.

Kathleen Lord, Denver, Colorado has represented criminal defendants in the state and federal courts since 1988. She has worked as a federal and state public defender and served as the Chief Appellate Deputy for the Colorado State Public Defender from 1996-2009. She is now in private practice and has been on the CCJRC Board since 2011.

Hassan Latif, Aurora, Colorado is a Certified Addictions Counselor Level II, and provides addiction counseling services primarily to people living with HIV and those recently released from incarceration, at It Takes A Village, Inc. in Aurora. After spending almost 20 years in Colorado penitentiaries, he was released in January 2006 and embarked on a career trying to help others avoid prison. He is the Mentoring Coordinator and Case Manager for the Turnabout Program, a Denver organization that provides job training, education and support for recently released ex-offenders. He regularly returns to Colorado correctional facilities to provide support and groups for inmates. Hassan is married to Imani S. Latif and has two children, Sama, 27 and Khansaa, 24.

Mandy Rigg, Lafayette, Colorado is a consultant to nonprofits. In both her professional and volunteer activities, she delights in working with organizations that further civil rights and improve access to essential health and human services for people with few resources. Longtime clients include the Denver Children's Advocacy Center and The Legal Center for People with Disabilities, and she has served on the board of Clinica Family Health Services, a network of community health clinics for uninsured and underserved people, since 2000. Mandy was born and raised in England and worked as an actress in London before a summer theater project in Connecticut changed the course of her life. After living in New York City for eight years, she moved to Colorado, where her first job in the nonprofit sector was with the Colorado Nonprofit Association. Mandy is committed to reforming the current sad state of the criminal justice system and was honored to join the CCJRC Board in 2011.

Magalie Lerman, Denver, Colorado
Prax(us)
Director of Outreach and Organizing
March 2011-present
Magalie was born in Los Angeles, California and grew up in Tucson, Arizona. She moved to Denver with her family in 2000. She graduated high school from Rocky Mountain Hebrew Academy in 2004. Magalie spent the next six years of her life in chronically homeless conditions battling drug addiction. She spent six months in jail and was charged with a felony in 2009. Magalie is now in recovery, and is passionate about addressing injustices impacting the community. She volunteered with Prax(us) for nearly a year doing outreach and community organizing before joining staff as Outreach Organizer. She is now Co-Director at Prax(us). Magalie also volunteers her time working with the Harm Reduction Action Center and the Eating Disorder Foundation. She is currently a student at Metro State University, and serves on the board of directors of the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition.

Taryn Van Deusen
Paralegal, Colorado State Public Defender's Office
Taryn is a member of the National Association of Legal Assistants, and she believes the strongest tool for combating discrimination, achieving racial justice, and providing legal solutions for underserved communities is through criminal justice reform. She has a personal investment in working towards reversing the trend of mass incarceration and pervasive, fundamental, race-based inequity in the legal system.
Term end: 2013

Hans Meyer
Criminal Defense Attorney
Hans has a private law practice specializing in immigration law, criminal defense, and advisements regarding the immigration consequences of criminal convictions. He also serves as the Public Policy Director for the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition and is an active member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, the National Immigration Project, the National Lawyers Guild, the ACLU of Colorado, and the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar.
Term end: 2013

Rosalyn Wheeler-Bell
Registered Nurse; B.S.N.
Roz is a registered nurse who graduated from the University of Colorado with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing. She is currently the Program Director of the Homeless Prevention/Rapid Re-housing and Rural Initiatives for the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless/Stout Street Clinic. She has developed, implemented, administered, and evaluated community service and treatment programs, with over 30 years experience as a psychiatric nurse. She is a dedicated community planner and organizer and has successfully managed a multi-disciplinary team in the development of new prevention programs for homeless citizens.
Term end: 2013







90% of women in prison were assessed to be in need of substance abuse treatment.



Colorado prison population has grown 604% since 1980, while the population of the state grew 59%.



The odds of a male born in 2001 going to prison during his lifetime are: 1 in 3 for African Americans, 1 in 6 for Latinos, and 1 in 17 for Caucasians.



The state paid private prisons over $90 million this year to house 5,000 state prisoners.



The Dept of Corrections budget is $703 million, up from $70 million in 1985.



1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men sent to prison were convicted of a drug offense.



65% of women in prison are mothers of children under 18 years old.



69% of people in Colorado prisons for drug offenses, are people of color.



Every year, 28% of people who are sent to prison were revoked for a technical violation of parole.



The United States incarcerates more people for drug offenses, than the European Union does for all offenses combined.



The DOC projects that by 2008, 1 out of 5 people in Colorado prisons will suffer from a serious mental illness.