While WOCN is a project of the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence, WOCN is nationally regarded as a women of color-led initiative because:
- WOCN leadership, staff, and WOCN Advisors are made up exclusively of women of color.
- WOCN programming and issue areas are generated and inspired directly from its women of color constituency as a part of continuous dialogues, surveys, and programming conducted around the country.
WOCN is currently comprised of six dedicated staff members and several nationally recognized women of color consultants.
Tonya Lovelace, MA, Senior Director of WOCN
Tonya draws upon two graduate degrees, a former role as adjunct instructor for several accredited universities, and close to 18 years of direct service, advocacy, systems change, project development and management, and national, state, and local anti-oppression and cultural competency training experience within the antiviolence against women movement to lead the overall development and growth of the WOCN Project. As WOCN Director, Tonya oversees all WOCN projects, generates funds for new initiatives, and provides overall direction for the national training, technical assistance, programming and support provided to WOCN constituents and colleagues by staff, Advisors, Mentor Project, and consultants across the country.
Rebecca Balog, BA, WOCN Project Manager
Rebecca has dedicated fourteen years of service to the anti-violence movement in various capacities. She has been published in various national human rights and social justice publications for her work in Tribal Nations. Rebecca administers and maintains specialized technical assistance, public policy, timelines and tracks the progress of WOCN staff and consultants, and provides comprehensive support to WOCN projects. Her responsibilities include providing advanced outreach and executing anti-oppression initiatives within communities of color, coordinating the development of WOCN publications and WOCN information technology, and helping to steer and support membership activities. As WOCN Project Manager, Rebecca specializes in public policy and training addressing issues within Tribal and Sovereign Nations related to domestic and sexual violence and implements national organizing around young women of color and leadership.
Shasme Jackson, AA, WOCN Project Coordinator
Shasmebrings to WOCN over a decade of public service improving the lives of women and minority business owners by guiding them through the state’s procurement process and helping them compete successfully in state government. In her current role as Project Coordinator with WOCN she provides the first tier of technical assistance to callers and written inquires related to communities of color and violence against women and families, implements outreach and communication strategies with WOCN participants and constituents, helps shape and enhance the WOCN Membership, assists in the development of WOCN marketing tools and publications, and helps in the development and implementation of WOCN information technology. As Project Coordinator, she assists with coordinating all logistics and implementing WOCN meetings, conference call, and event, and helps with providing comprehensive organizational support. Shasme has an Associate’s degree in Business and is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Corporate Communication.
In her role as Project Assistant, she is responsible for coordinating all logistics, preparing all materials and handling communications for meetings/events; responding to WOCN calls and inquires; maintaining WOCN mailing lists and databases; keeping inventory of WOCN materials and resources; and providing comprehensive administrative support services to any WOCN Project as assigned. Chelsea is a recent graduate from the University of Pittsburgh with a B.A. in Media and Professional Communications, a Minor in Sociology and two Certificates in Digital Media and Writings for the Professions. Her time at the university has prepared her for the organizational, communicative and administrative skills that this position requires. As a new member of the anti-violence movement, she hopes to bring awareness to the movement and help eradicate violence against women and families.
Lina is a social and human rights activist with over 20 years working to end violence against all women and girls. She has expertise in developing new programs, maintaining core services and, creating organizational alliances and mergers.
Lina has a diverse and rich back ground in victim/survivor advocacy, health care, leadership development, succession planning and executive transitions. As a mentor for women of color she provided leadership and assistance to Advocates of Color. Under her leadership, Advocates of Color established the Wisconsin Women of Color Leadership Network to create opportunities for co-mentoring, support, training and leadership development. Lina received the Living Legend Award for community organizing and her work against racism. She also received WCASA’s Voices of Courage Award for her advocacy and leadership with clergy sexual assault survivors. She was instrumental in creating and facilitating listening sessions between the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and over 800 survivors of clergy sexual abuse. Most recently she received the Unsung Heroes award for her commitment, service and leadership in the Latino community in Wisconsin. She is the proud mother of 8 beautiful children.
Raphael Balthazar, Financial Coordinator
A former student at Kent State University with a vast background in both finance and accounting, Raphael joins WOCN as the Fiscal Coordinator.As WOCN’s newest staff member, he will maintain and update all financial records, code invoices and perform human resources and administrative functions. In addition to these tasks, Raphael will be responsible for creating, maintaining and updating WOCN’s central filing system and grant management files. He is very excited to be the first male to join WOCN’s staff, as he knows not only how important it is to address this serious social problem, but how essential it is to stand up and work to end violence against women and children.