Through her work and in her personal life, Shauna has been interested in building safe, healthy and inclusive communities. Before joining CRC, she was the Manager of Facilitation Programs for the Peninsula Conflict Resolution Center and a mediator for the City of Palo Alto, where she also served three terms as a Commissioner on the City’s Human Relations Commission.
Since moving to Santa Cruz County she has continued to reach out and learn more about her local community through participation in meetings, task forces, workshops and trainings. In 2012 she was certified as a Community Emergency Response Team member (CERT), and participated in Leadership Santa Cruz County (LSCC). In 2016 Shauna completed the Leadership for Community Transformation (LCT) training where she joined over 100 others in learning skills to help create solutions based strategies for addressing long term County-wide concerns. Shauna graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Communications and believes communication is a life long learning.
Trainings and Family-law Affordable Mediation (FAM) contracts Manager
Suzanne currently manages our training and divorce mediation programs. After graduating from UCLA, she earned a masters degree in Public Administration at USF. She worked for many years as an administrator for mental health programs throughout Santa Cruz County. In 2007, she took CRC’s Community Mediation Training, and instantly loved the mediation process. She began as a volunteer mediator and served as CRC’s Executive Director for three years. She helped to found the Family Accessible Mediation project (FAM), which is CRC’s divorce mediation program. After taking a few years off to spend more time with her son, Suzanne is happy to contribute once again to CRC’s mission of of making more peaceful communities through dialogue.
Restorative Justice Program Manager
Alaya manages the Restorative Justice Program at the CRC. She was trained as a community mediator in 2009 with SEEDS in Berkeley. Prior to her current position, Alaya was a volunteer mediator with the Parent Teen Mediation Program and the Victim Offender Dialogue Program since 2011 and the Family Affordable Mediation Program since 2014. Alaya earned a Master’s Degree in International Policy Studies with a specialization in Conflict Resolution and Negotiation in 2005. As a part of her graduate studies, she spent a month in Cyprus with the International Institute of Mediation and Conflict Resolution studying conflict resolution in the Middle East. In 2008, she interned with Global Majority in Nepal where she co-led workshops on interest -based negotiation and conflict resolution to Nepali youth peace activists. She has since created and led Effective Communication Workshops for corporate and non-profit clients. Alaya furthered her studies of restorative justice at a week-long course on Restorative Circles with Dominic Barter in 2011 and a 4-day course with the International Institute of Restorative Practices in 2015. She continues to design and lead trainings on communication, conflict resolution, and restorative justice for the CRC as well as facilitate mediations and dialogues with youth in the juvenile justice system as part of the Parent Teen Mediation Program and the Victim-Offender Dialogue Program.
Court, Community, and Workplace Mediation Programs Manager
Jessie, is currently attending the Monterey College of Law where she is pursuing a Juris Doctorate and a Master of Legal Studies Degree. Her chosen focus during her academic endeavors are Family and Immigration Law. Jessie has trained as a mediator at the Mandell Gisnet Center in Monterey, and the Pepperdine School of Law – Straus Center for Conflict Resolution. She has also extensively volunteered as a bilingual mediator at the Unlawful Detainer and Small Claims courts in Monterey, CA. Originally from Puerto Rico, Jessie has a close interest and focus on serving the needs of minorities, especially the Latino community. Through her mediation work and future legal career, Jessie hopes to offer legal options and to facilitate communication in disputes, to underrepresented groups. She recognizes the value of Mediation in the community and is an avid advocate for alternative dispute resolution.
Whether it’s a public radio exploration of Muslims and Jews talking their way toward peace, or a cable tv show about mediation between gangs, click here to find examples of how the media portrays people working together.
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