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 four 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.
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.
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.