Smart Suite Research Practitioner Fellows Academy – Participant Bios

Christine Connor

Research Associate I, Justice & Security Strategies, Inc.

Since joining JSS in 2010, Ms. Connor has worked on BJA and NIJ funded projects throughout the United States. She is currently working on Smart Prosecution projects in Los Angeles, CA and San Francisco, CA. Ms. Connor obtained her Master’s degree from Florida International University and her Bachelor’s degree from Loyola University of Maryland.

Kristine Denman

Director, New Mexico Statistical Analysis Center, University of New Mexico

Ms. Denman has worked on the evaluation of several New Mexico Project Safe Neighborhoods programs as well as its predecessor, SACSI. She was appointed Director of the NMSAC two years ago, where held a senior staff position for a number of years. She has over 20 years of experience in research and evaluation. She has served as the lead researcher and/or principal investigator on numerous projects for agency partners at the city, state and federal levels.

Chelsey Donohoe

M.A., Research Assistant, Department of Criminal Justice, Temple University.

Ms. Donohoe is a third year PhD student at Temple University. She earned her BA in Psychology and Spanish Studies from Texas Lutheran University and her MA in Criminal Justice from Temple University. During her undergraduate studies, Ms. Donohoe was lead investigator on several projects that were presented at conferences for the Southwestern Psychological Association (SWPA). Her interests include substance abuse, community corrections, and implementation science. Current research projects include secondary data analysis investigating therapeutic engagement and motivation among adolescents in substance abuse treatment, and analyzing whether Prohibition-era liquor raids were concentrated in certain parts of Philadelphia. She is one of the external evaluators for the Smart Supervision project with Philadelphia Adult Probation and Parole (APPD) and researchers from George Mason University’s Center for the Advancement of Correctional Excellence (GMU ACE!)

Grant Drawve

Post Doc Research Associate, Department of Psychology and School of Criminal Justice, Rutgers University.

Grant recently graduated from UALR with a PhD in Criminal Justice. His dissertation focused on the role of risk for criminal opportunities at the neighborhood-level in relation to individual-level recidivism. Grant has worked on PSN initiatives in Jersey City, NJ and Little Rock, AR. His focus area is environmental criminology with a specialty in the spatial-temporal analyses of crime. Grant has prior experience as a research assistant with Arkansas Community Corrections and consulting with Little Rock Police Department, among other localities. Grant received his B.A. (2009) in Administration of Justice and M.A. (2011) in Criminology and Criminal Justice from Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Jack Dustin

Ph.D., Interim Director of Service Learning, Wright State University.

Dustin directed the Center for Urban and Public Affairs at Wright State University for 16 years (ending 2014) and chaired the Department of Urban Affairs & Geography for 20 years (ending 2015). Dustin became the Team Evaluator for the Dayton Community Initiative to Reduce Gun Violence (CIRGV) in 2008 and has continued to assist Dayton evaluate this initiative. His evaluation included creating social network maps from intelligence provided by multiple police agencies, interviewing 30 gang members and analyzing criminal justice records for over 200 CIRGV individuals of interest. In 2012, he led a yearlong effort to improve community-police relations which resulted in a permanent Community-Police Council and an ambitious action plan. He is now the research partner for the Westwood (a Dayton neighborhood) PSN Project.

Dustin has been the principal investigator on more than 100 community projects, including HUD’s Community Outreach Partnership Center program. He often partners with other universities and academic colleges and departments including the University of Dayton, medical and business schools and computer engineering to meet the needs of local governments and civic and nonprofit organizations

Amy C. Eisert

Civic Institute Director, Mercyhurst University.

Ms. Eisert received her Bachelor’s of Science in Criminal Justice from Bowling Green State University, Master’s of Administration of Justice from Mercyhurst University and is ABD in Public Safety at Capella University. Since 2013, she has served as the primary research partner for Project Safe Neighborhoods and the Byrne Criminal Justice Initiative for the City of Erie. Amy is the key state contact for Communities That Care in Erie County and has served in that capacity since 2002. She has served as the evaluator for other state and national initiatives including the School Resource Officer Evaluation for the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency and the MacArthur Models for Change Initiative for Erie County. She is a member of the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency’s Prevention Subcommittee. In addition to her professional commitments, she President of the Earn It Board Juvenile Restitution Program, Vice President of the Northwest Tri-County Intermediate Unit-5 and School Board Director of the General McLane School District.

Jessica Gonzales

Senior Research Associate, Council of State Governments Justice Center.

As a senior research associate with the Council of State Governments Research Center, Jessica serves as a resource to the technical assistance providers at the National Reentry Resource Center. Jessica’s work with the CSG Justice Center includes a mental health/law enforcement collaboration, juvenile justice data initiatives, and work on the justice reinvestment initiative in two states.

Before joining the Justice Center, Jessica attended the Lyndon Baines Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas and worked as a research analyst for the Texas Juvenile Justice Department.

Robert W. Hood

Director of the Community Prosecution and Violent Crime Division, the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys.

Mr. Hood has been the Director since 2011. In that position he has played a key role in developing and executing four APA National Prosecution Summits and three Innovations in Criminal Justice Summits. He also helped launch and hasmade several presentations as part of APA’s Final Fridays Webinar series; authored and co-authored two BJA Publications, “Robust Criminal Justice System Data Sharing: A Toolkit for 12 Smart Practices for Prosecutors”, and “A Framework for High Performance Prosecutorial Services”; staffed several prosecutor’s working groups, and has made over forty site visits to jurisdictions across the nation to support research, offer help and advice, and provide training on a wide variety of criminal justice issues. APA is also the national Training & Technical Assistance provider for the USDOJ’s Smart Prosecution Program.

Prior to joining APA, Bob served as the Chief of the Public & Community Safety Division of the Seattle City Attorney’s Office for nearly twelve years. In that position he built and directly managed the six-attorney Precinct Liaison Program, the office’s nationally recognized community prosecution effort. In 2005, he served as one of the co-founders of the Seattle Community Court and also implemented Seattle’s initiative under the USDOJ’s Community Based Problem Solving Criminal Justice Initiatives grant program which expanded the community court city-wide and helped that court gain USDOJ mentor court status in 2009. In 2009, he led Seattle’s successful implementation of the USDOJ’s Drug Market Initiative.

From 1997-1998, Bob served as the Chief Criminal Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for Island County in Coupeville, Washington. From 1982 to 1997, he served as a Special Assignment Prosecutor with the Trial Division of the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office in Detroit, Michigan, where he tried hundreds of homicides and other high media profile felonies as part of the office’s “Special Assignment” Prosecutor Unit.

Bob obtained his Juris Doctor degree and an M.P.A. from Wayne State University. He is licensed to practice law in the State of Washington.

Nicole Jarrett

Ph.D., Deputy Program Director, Council of State Governments Justice Center.

Dr. Jarrett oversees grantee training and technical assistance to jurisdictions seeking to improve system-level responses to individuals in the criminal justice system. Before this position, she served as the Director of Health Policy Research at the National Medical Association and as the Director of Health Policy at the Baltimore City Health Department. During her tenure at the Health Department she led the City’s participation in the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s Community Voices Initiative, a national demonstration project to identify and develop strategies to improve access to care for underserved populations. Dr. Jarrett received her B.S. from Rutgers University and her doctorate in public health from Johns Hopkins University.

Shanhe Jiang

Ph.D., Professor and Chairperson, Department of Criminal Justice, Wayne State University.

He has published more than 70 journal articles and 20 books or book chapters. His major teaching and research interests include methodology, corrections, and comparative criminal justice and criminology. He is currently working on several research projects including community corrections in China, institutional corrections in China, multiple nation surveys of
crime and criminal justice views and spatial criminology. He is research partner for the Toledo Smart Policing Initiative.

William Lu

Research Analyst, Justice and Security Strategies, Inc.

Since the beginning of this year, Mr. Lu has been involved with the Smart Policing Initiative at the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). He helped identify the most violent areas in Los Angeles and trained LAPD personnel for the Los Angeles Strategic Extraction and Restoration (LASER) program. Mr. Lu is also assisting the Los Angeles City Attorney with their Neighborhood Justice Program.

Prior to working at JSS, Mr. Lu graduated from the California State University in Fullerton with a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice and Political Science. Shortly after that, Mr. Lu was certified as a Crime and Intelligence Analyst from the California Department of Justice and served as an intern for the Los Angeles Police Department’s Real-Time Analysis and Critical Response division. During this time, Mr. Lu trained in variety of programs such as the Crime Analysis Mapping System, ArcGIS, and Palantir. His knowledge in criminology and exposure to information systems enabled him to provide technical and research support wherever it is needed.

Dr. Angela Madden

Associate Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Director of the Mid-South Research Center at the University of Memphis, and President/CEO of Themis Center for Justice Policy, Practice and Research, a private consulting firm.

She earned her Ph.D. in Criminology from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and is beginning her 22nd year of teaching and research. Although her research interests are varied, they share a policy analysis or program evaluation focus. Most recently, she has studied policies related to school safety & violence, gun violence, domestic violence, and correctional policy analysis and program evaluation. She also has authored or co-authored numerous journal articles, book chapters, encyclopedia entries and grant proposals. She recently presented to the American Society of Criminology her test of school violence theories using data collected directly from incarcerated perpetrators and currently has a contract for a book on school violence and policies, based on this research.

As Director of the Mid-South Research Center, she is working with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Tennessee and the City of Memphis, Memphis Police Department (MPD), to evaluate the Project Safe Neighborhood’s “GunStat” program, which aims to reduce gun violence through the identification and enhanced prosecution of the most serious, chronic gun offenders. She assisted Shelby County Government in the development of a FY14 Smart Supervision grant proposal that was not funded, but worked with MPD on a FY15 Smart Policing Initiative proposal and the City of Memphis, Office of the Mayor, on a FY15 Byrne Innovation Grant proposal for community empowerment and blight reduction to drive crime reduction. She will serve as Research Partner on those grants, if funded. She also is working with the Family Safety Center of Memphis and Shelby County on several grant projects to increase the safety of domestic violence victims, with the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office on a MacArthur Foundation “Safety & Justice Challenge,” and with the Memphis Shelby County Crime Commission providing technical assistance to service providers for domestic violence victims.

Lauren Magee

Doctoral Student, Graduate Research Assistant, Michigan State University.

Lauren Magee is a doctoral student in the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University. Her research interests include policing, gun violence, social networking analysis, and geospatial analysis. Currently, she is responsible for data collection and management for three projects: the Detroit Ceasefire project, the Eastern District of Michigan Project Safe Neighborhoods, and a National Institute of Justice grant in Indianapolis. Prior to becoming a doctoral student Ms. Magee served as a crime analyst and crime analysis supervisor for the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department as well as a research assistant for the IMPD Homicide Cold Case Unit.

Carlena Orosco

Research Analyst II, Statistical Analysis Center, Arizona Criminal Justice Commission.

Carlena Orosco is a Research Analyst with the Arizona Criminal Justice Commission (ACJC) – Statistical Analysis Center, with a background in communities and crime, policing, environmental criminology and gangs. She holds both a BA and MA in Criminal Justice from California State University, San Bernardino, and has also completed numerous doctoral courses at Temple University in Philadelphia. While at Temple, she served as both a Research Assistant and Teaching Assistant, as well as an Instructor for the Nature of Crime and Urban Crime Patterns courses. Carlena has worked on research projects spanning numerous content areas, including social network analysis and gangs, community crime patterns and law enforcement decision-making. Additionally, she worked for nine years as a police dispatcher for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, where she was a Systems Monitor and Acting Supervisor, and assisted with the creation of a Frequency Sharing Agreement for Los Angeles County. As a Research Analyst for ACJC, Carlena works on the Rx Drug Misuse and Abuse Initiative, and also oversees the Arizona Gang Threat Assessment. Ongoing, she will be assisting with evaluation of the Coconino Online Education Program for medium and high-risk adult probationers.

Christian Peterson

Crime Analyst with the Strategic Services Division, Portland Police Bureau, Portland, Oregon.

A graduate of Portland State University, Christian earned his BS and MS in Criminology, with a Graduate Certificate in GIS. As an adjunct professor with PSU, Christian teaches a crime mapping course.

Christian is an active member of the criminal analysis community and has presented at the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS), Oregon Criminal Justice Research Conference (OCJRC), International Association of Crime Analysts (IACA), and the Western Society of Criminology (WSC).

With the Portland Police Bureau, Christian is instrumental in the statistical analysis and implementation of a comprehensive program aimed at allowing police officers to engage with members of the community in areas that may be experiencing higher levels of crime or livability concerns in the Portland Metro Area. He is also fully engaged in the Smart Policing Initiative Phase VI project. His forward thinking and innovative approaches have resulted in several awards and recognitions for the Portland Police Bureau and himself.

As a veteran of the US Army, Christian values and recognizes the importance of data in the guidance of community and policy development. His goal is to champion data collection and
statistical analysis as a positive contributing factor to impact evidence based decisions within his community.

Ron Schack

Ph.D., Partner, The Charter Oak Group, LLC.

Dr. Schack has worked on the development of performance management systems, program evaluation, and advanced data analysis for over 20 years. Ron is the lead research partner for the Project Safe Neighborhoods grant to The Justice Education Center, Inc., to provide opportunity-focused, Project Longevity type model services for justice involved juveniles in three Connecticut cities. Ron is also currently working on a Results-Based Accountability (RBA) implementation plan for the juvenile justice system in Connecticut. Ron is currently conducting evaluations of a youth character development program and a program designed to transition at-risk youth from high school to vocational training and employment. Ron has also provided support to the Connecticut General Assembly in implementing RBA in the budget process. Dr. Schack also has a great deal of experience measuring and evaluating employment and training programs, including evaluations of the Connecticut and Kentucky One-Stop Career Center Systems, as well as a five year review of the Hartford Youth Opportunity Program. Dr. Schack also teaches program evaluation, research methods, and public budgeting, currently at Trinity College in Hartford, CT.

Prior to joining the Charter Oak Group, LLC in 2000, Dr. Schack worked for the Connecticut Department of Labor, his last position being manager of their performance measurement unit. Dr. Schack holds a PHD in Political Science, a Master of Public Affairs Degree, and a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from the University of Connecticut. When not doing performance measurement work, Ron enjoys composing and playing music on his 12-string bass guitar, practicing medieval longsword, and reading classic fantasy literature.

Eric Scott

Research Associate, Applied Research Services, Inc.

Applied Research recently completed a SMART Probation: Reducing Prison Populations, Saving Money, and Creating Safer Communities, evaluation in Aurora, CO. This past grant cycle Applied Research applied for SMART prosecution grants in Baltimore, MD and Dekalb Co., GA. Mr. Scott currently conducts site visits at 12 Veterans Treatment Courts in GA, evaluations funded in part by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. He also contributes to other independent research projects, including a heroin study in the Atlanta suburbs, funded by the Fulton County District Attorney.

Prior to his work at Applied Research Services, Mr. Scott was a staff investigator at the Public Defender Service for D.C., where he spent years investigating homicides, sexual assaults, kidnappings, armed robberies and burglaries. Mr. Scott received his B.A. from Covenant College on Lookout Mountain, GA in Economics and History. Mr. Scott grew up in Kenya and Germany and currently resides in Atlanta, GA.

Sean Sothern

Police Officer, Portland Police Bureau, Portland, Oregon.

Sean Sothern has worked for 18 years as a Police Officer at the Portland Police Bureau in Portland, OR. Officer Sothern holds a B.A. in Anthropology from The University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Throughout his career Officer Sothern has worked as a uniformed patrol officer. In addition to patrol work he has served as a Field Training Officer, Firearms Instructor, and Bomb Technician. He is currently assigned to the Crime Analysis Unit where he works on several projects. Working on crime prevention, community survey and outreach projects Officer Sothern became involved in
an evidence-based-policing project known in Portland as Neighborhood Involvement Locations (NI-Loc). This program strives to reduce crime and the fear of crime through building police-community relationships in high crime micro places. The Portland Police Bureau and Portland State University recently were recently awarded a grant as a BJA Smart Policing Initiative site.

Angela Tolosa

Deputy Reentry Director, the National Division at the Council of State Governments Justice Center.

In part, her work involves the day-to-day operations of the National Reentry Resource Center (NRRC) which provides provides education, training, and technical assistance to states, tribes, territories, local governments, service providers, non-profit organizations, and corrections institutions working on prisoner reentry. The NRRC provides technical assistance to all grant recipients of Second Chance Act funding including the Smart Supervision grant program and the Second Chance Act Adult Demonstration grant program. Prior to joining the Justice Center, Angela worked at the New York City Department of Correction (DOC) as the Assistant Commissioner for Skills Development and Program Services, responsible for the oversight of DOC’s provision of educational services, job training, grievance resolution, and law library services for individuals in DOC custody. In that capacity, she managed relationships with DOC stakeholders and partners, including the New York City Department of Education and several community-based organizations. Additionally, she oversaw the operations of the City’s first social impact bond-funded initiative, which seeks to reduce recidivism among adolescents in DOC custody. Previously, Angela worked as an Executive Director of the City’s Department of Small Business Services, managing operations of the Workforce1 Career Centers. She also worked at the Center for Court Innovation in various capacities, most recently as the project director of Midtown Community Court. Angela earned her B.A. from Brown University and her J.D. from Brooklyn Law School.

Heather Tubman-Carbone

Grantee Technical Assistance Manager, Corrections, Council of State Governments Justice Center.

Heather Tubman-Carbone is a Grantee Technical Assistance Manager with the CSG Justice Center where she oversees technical assistance and product development associated with the Center’s Corrections portfolio, including the Statewide Recidivism Reduction program, designed to help executive-branch policymakers and state corrections departments plan and implement system-wide reforms to reduce recidivism. Prior to joining the Justice Center, Heather worked at Westat as a Research Associate, designing and managing surveys focused on adult and juvenile community corrections populations and supervision agencies nationwide. She also worked at the Prisoner Reentry Institute at John Jay College, managing a research portfolio that included young adult reentry and prison education programs and co-authored practical toolkits about barriers to reentry. Heather has conducted research concerning parole release decision making, the impact of gender-specific parole supervision programs, sex offender supervision policies, and distance-learning programs that begin in prison and allow adults to continue participation as they transition back into their communities. She has co-authored toolkits about barriers to reentry, and written on the reentry and transformation process and probation home visits for professional journals. Heather earned her Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Northeastern University, her Master’s in Criminal Justice from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and her Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from Rutgers University School of Criminal Justice.

Beverly G. Ward

Ph.D., Principal and Owner, BGW Associates, LLC.

Beverly Ward uses social impact assessment to understand the effects of decisions, policies, and extreme events on various population groups. Her work is highly recognized in social justice movements, the housing and transportation industries, and beyond. She had conducted training and research projects on the health and social impacts of natural disasters and other hazards; housing and transportation policies as related to persons with disabilities, women, and low-income and minority communities; and, access and mobility issues. This includes community-based research experience, skill-building workshops on coalition-building, collaboration, conflict resolution, and coordination. She also has developed and taught courses on environmental policy, social research design and measurement, and sustainability.

Dr. Ward is an experiential workshop facilitator, trainer, and program evaluator. She has published numerous articles and monographs based on her research. She holds degrees from Vassar College, the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and the University of South Florida.

Alese Wooditch

Doctoral Candidate, Criminology, Law, and Society, George Mason University.

Alese is a graduate research assistant in the Center for Evidence-Based Crime Policy. She is currently working on a project supported by a Smart Policing Initiative grant to develop and assess an innovative collective efficacy-based hot spots policing approach in Brooklyn Park, MN that partners police with the community and a research partner to build collective efficacy in hot spots of crime and low collective efficacy. Alese is formerly a research associate in the Center for Advancing Correctional Excellence and served as an Intelligence Analyst with the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Labor Racketeering and Fraud Investigations. Alese received her MA in criminal justice from Penn State University in 2009. Her recent work has appeared in Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Criminal Justice and Behavior, and Journal of Experimental Criminology. Her research interests include geography of crime, experimental and computational criminology, and quantitative methods.