Speakers

Ashley Easter is a writer, speaker, and abuse-victim advocate who educates religious and secular communities on abuse, introducing them to safe practices and resources. She is the founder of The Courage Conference, a judgement-free place for survivors of abuse—and those who love them—to hear inspiring stories from other survivors and advocates about moving forward in boldness.

Book: The Courage Coach: A Practical, Friendly Guide on How to Heal From Abuse

Twitter:  @ashleymeaster

Website: www.TheCourageConference.com

 

Gustavo Arellano Miranda is the former publisher and editor of a nationally syndicated column in OC Weekly. Arellano's award-winning columns in which he answered questions about America's spiciest and largest minority, were collected in book form in 2008 as ¡Ask a Mexican!. Arellano has published two further books: Orange County: A Personal History, and Taco USA: How Mexican Food Conquered America. He is a lifelong resident of Orange County and is the proud son of two Mexican immigrants, one whom came to this country in the trunk of a Chevy.

 

Marek Lisinski is a survivor, social activist and president of the Polish foundation Nie Lekajcie Sie, which provides assistance to victims of sexual abuse by the clergy. Marek was the victim of a pedophile priest at the age of 13. He co-founded and now manages the first and only Polish organization which attempts to identify the problem  of clerical pedophilia in Poland, called Be Not Afraid Foundation. 

 

Steven Spaner, PhD, is a retired professor from the University of Missouri – Saint Louis. He joined SNAP in 2003 and developed the group of “Truth” websites to support leaders in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. In 2009 Steven responded to a call in from Outreach Director Barbara Dorris to build chapters and a presence in Australia. The website www.snapaustralia.org is the anchor of that presence. The SNAP Australia members are the foundation of that presence.

 

Pamela Spees is a senior staff attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights where she has led the work in partnership with SNAP to bring complaints and reports about the widespread sexual violence by clergy to international human rights bodies. She has a background in international criminal law and human rights and previously worked in the negotiations toward the International Criminal Court to ensure that crimes of sexual and gender-based violence were included in the treaty.

 

Juan Carlos Cruz (TBA)

 

Victor Vieth is the Senior Director and Founder of the Gundersen National Child Protection Training Center, training thousands of child-protection professionals from all 50 states, and 17 countries. As a prosecutor in rural Minnesota, he was named to the President’s Honor Roll of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children. Victor has been instrumental in implementing 22 state and international forensic interview training programs and dozens of undergraduate/graduate programs on child maltreatment.  Victor has published countless articles on the investigation, prosecution and prevention of child abuse and neglect. He is author of Unto the Third Generation, a bold initiative that outlines the necessary steps to eliminate child abuse in America in three generations.

 

Tom Doyle since 1984, has worked on exposing clergy sexual abuse in the U.S., Europe and Canada and helped grand juries in the U.S and investigatory commissions in Australia, Ireland and Canada. His compassion and dedication have brought hope to thousands of survivors worldwide.

 

Torah BontragerTorah Bontrager, author of An Amish Girl in Manhattan: Escaping At Age 15, Breaking All the Rules, and Feeling Safe Again (a memoir), is the first Amish person to graduate from the Ivy League. She works with entrepreneurs and leaders to make the world safer for women, 33% of whom are sexual assault survivors. Download her FREE guide “12 Ways to Make Women Feel Safe at Work” at www.TorahBontrager.com/12Ways

 

Bishop Accountability has collected thousands of documents that help educate the public to the scope of abuse crisis by naming those priests, bishops and cardinals who have abused children and vulnerable adults or have covered up this abuse.

 

Chrissie Foster is from Melbourne, Australia and the mother of two daughters who were sexually assaulted by their parish priest. In 2010, she wrote a book on their experience with journalist Paul Kennedy called,  Hell On The Way To Heaven. The book led to a Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into religious organizations, which in turn led to the Australia-wide Royal Commission.   In 2017, she participated in the ABC documentary , Undeniable. This crime devastated their family and has been a 22-year battle.

 

Jodi Hobbs, Jodi has an BA in IT and an MBA. She is a survivor of a youth treatment facility in California. Jodi created Survivors of Institutional Abuse (SIA) to help survivors abused in Behavioral Modification type programs.

 

Rachel Grant is the owner and founder of Rachel Grant Coaching and is a Sexual Abuse Recovery Coach. She is also the author of Beyond Surviving: The Final Stage in Recovery from Sexual Abuse. She works with survivors of childhood sexual abuse who are beyond sick and tired of feeling broken, unfixable, and burdened by the past. She helps them let go of the pain of abuse and finally move on with their lives. For more info visit: www.rachelgrantcoaching.com

 

Guila Benchimol is a PhD candidate in Sociological Criminology with over 10 years of experience as a Jewish educator. Her research and advocacy focus on sexual violence, especially in religious communities. Guila currently consults with Jewish organizations and communities across the denominations regarding abuse prevention and intervention and has worked with other faith groups. She is also a research assistant at the Centre for the Study of Social and Legal Responses to Violence where she has worked on projects related to homicide and domestic violence.