SPEAKERS

Learn more about our 2020 Conference speakers.

 

ARLENE VASSELL

Vice President of Programs, Prevention, and Social Change - National Resource Center on Domestic Violence

Arlene joined the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence (NRCDV) as staff in 2015. Prior to joining staff, Arlene served as the Vice-Chair of NRCDV’s Board of Directors from 2011 to 2015. Arlene supervises NRCDV’s Programs & Prevention and Communications Teams and oversees several key initiatives, including the Domestic Violence Awareness Project and PreventIPV.  Arlene has over 20 years of multi-faceted experience within the movement to end domestic violence and other forms of gender-based violence. Her advocacy work began at the YWCA Women’s Advocacy Program, in Virginia, where she worked in various capacities; including, hotline advocate, case manager and lastly as Director of the local domestic violence shelter in rural Chesterfield County. Subsequently, she worked for the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance and the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence, managing and coordinating various projects and initiatives intended to prevent intimate partner violence and enhance responses for survivors from traditionally marginalized and vulnerable populations. Additionally, for several years, she managed Virginia’s Family Violence and Sexual Assault Hotline.  Arlene has served on numerous state-level and national committees and workgroups and has received many awards and recognitions for her advocacy work.

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ANITA MOMILANI AWO

Social Services Team Lead - Liliʻuokalani Trust

Momilani is a licensed social worker and a Social Services Team Lead at Liliʻuokalani Trust.  She has been in social work for 41 years.  Momilani is a Maui girl, born and raised in Pu‘unēnē. The once thriving, vibrant plantation community of her birth may be gone, but the cherished memories of her early childhood remains vivid.  She enjoys hula, ʻike rooted in Hawaiʻian culture and time spent with her six moʻopuna.  She and her husband live on Hawaiian homestead in Waiehu.

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JENNIFER LANDHUIS

Director - Stalking Prevention, Awareness, and Resource Center

Jennifer is the Director of the Stalking Prevention, Awareness, and Resource Center (SPARC), a project of AEquitas. SPARC is an initiative aimed at ensuring first responders and other allied professionals have the specialized knowledge to identify and respond to the crime of stalking. SPARC also provides the tools, resources, and support needed to promote victim safety and offender accountability in stalking cases. Jennifer has been an advocate and educator on the issues of stalking, domestic violence, and sexual assault for 22 years and has her Masters of Science degree in Criminal Justice.

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ANISA WISEMAN

Program and Walk Manager - National Alliance on Mental Illness Hawai'i

Anisa was born in Hawaii, lived on the mainland for some time and graduated from Kahuku High School on the North Shore of Oahu. She went on to get her bachelors at University of Hawaii-West Oahu. She is a former special education teacher, business owner, successfully lives in recovery from PTSD, anxiety, and depression, and has family members with severe mental illness and substance abuse. Growing up with a single parent with a severe mental illness and without proper health care or support came everything else, the domestic violence, homelessness, etc. She currently works as program director and walk manager for NAMI Hawaii where her experience is able to help others get through their crisis.

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FARSHAD TALEBI

Human Trafficking Coordinator - State of Hawai'i Department of the Attorney General

Sha is a nationally recognized expert in human trafficking who currently serves as the State Human Trafficking Coordinator at the Hawaii Attorney General's office. Previously the head of the Washington State Attorney General's Office's first Human Trafficking and Child Exploitation Unit, he managed a multidisciplinary team dedicated to prosecuting and preventing sex and labor trafficking through an interdisciplinary approach, including policy development, law enforcement, and community-based partnerships. With extensive criminal litigation experience as a former Deputy Prosecuting Attorney and Assistant Attorney General in Washington, Sha also started Kitsap County's human trafficking initiative and created the state's first therapeutic diversion court for trafficking survivors. His years of experience in anti-human trafficking efforts led him to be selected as a 2017 United States Fellow for the NAGTRI International Fellows Program and 2019 Advocacy Award winner by Ho'ola Na Pua.

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KU'ULANI KEOHOKALOLE

Founder - People Strategies Hawai'I, LLC.

Ku‘ulani is an experienced organizational development consultant, working across sectors to advise leaders on creating functional, healthy, and engaging workplaces and communities.   Ku‘ulani blends both her unique understanding of Hawai’i’s cultural context, history and place with her knowledge and experience in organizational development to help organizations achieve their goals. She brings 10 years of experience in community engagement and advocacy work across Hawai‘i and on the East Coast. Her passion for improving the lives of individuals and strengthening organizations came from her family of Native Hawaiian social workers who held a strong belief in the ability of communities to advocate for and solve their own problems. Her mission is to strengthen the capacity of individuals, organizations and communities for a better Hawai’i.  Kuʻulani holds an M.A. in Educational Leadership, Politics & Advocacy from New York University and a B.A. in Ethnic Studies and Certificate in Women’s Studies from the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa. She was recently bestowed with Pacific Business News’s “40 Under 40” distinction in 2020, and serves actively on several community non-profit boards.

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CATHY CAVE

Founder - Inspired Vision, LLC.

Cathy Cave, a founding partner of Inspired Vision, LLC, has over 30 years of experience as an administrator, facilitator and consultant specializing in culture, inclusion and disparities elimination, trauma informed services and supports, peer support, strength-based approaches, supervision and leadership coaching within a variety of systems. She uses her survivor, family, community, provider and administrative perspectives to facilitate organizational change at local, state and national levels.  Cathy has provided technical assistance through the National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health, The National Center on Trauma Informed Care, The Mental Health Empowerment Project, numerous governmental agencies and advisory bodies, coalitions, and human service organizations throughout the country. She has conducted crisis counseling initiatives following the events of 9/11 and hurricanes Katrina and Rita. She is the former Director for Cultural Competence for New York State Office of Mental Health and one of New York State’s early trauma champions, coordinating county collaboratives and annual clinical training conferences.

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MATTHEW HOUCK

Lead Prevention Educator - YWCA of Kaua‘i

Matthew Houck is the Lead Prevention Educator for YWCA of Kaua‘i. Matthew, along with the prevention team, facilitate prevention education lessons with pre-K through 12+ grade students in schools across Kaua‘i island. Lessons include age-appropriate body awareness and safety, understanding and communicating boundaries, defining and identifying types of sexual violence, safety planning and Hawaii consent laws.


The Prevention department also houses LGBTQ services. Matthew provides outreach to the LGBTQ community and co-faciliates a weekly adult LGBTQ support group. Matthew also delivers professional development training for service providers to be more competent in serving LGBTQ populations. In 2019, Matthew chaired the inaugural Kaua’i Pride Parade & Festival planning committee that the YWCA sponsored.

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©2020 by Hawaii State Coalition Against Domestic Violence.