Meet Our Staff
Jeanne Ronayne, Executive Director
Jeanne Ronayne became the Executive Director of the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault in December 2014. Jeanne began her career at Olmsted County in 1984 as a social worker, moving to DFO Community Corrections 1986, and in 1998 she was appointed Program Manager of Victim Services. During the next 16 years, Jeanne worked to further justice for victims by engaging the many other systems professionals that interface with victims of crime. In 2010, Jeanne served as an expert witness in a matter that lead to the reversal of case law barring expert testimony in adult sexual cases. In 2012, Jeanne was a part of developing a primary prevention curriculum for school age children. Jeanne has been a champion of human rights and was a part of a community initiative to develop a county-wide hate/bias crime incident response plan.
In addition to her commitment to the work of ending sexual violence, Jeanne is committed to her family. Jeanne is married to Jim Pittenger, and together they enjoy a rich and busy family life that includes their six grown children, their partners, and six grandchildren.
Email Jeanne Ronayne Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7441
Yvonne Cournoyer, Prevention Program Manager
Yvonne Cournoyer has over 25 years of experience in planning, designing, developing, managing and evaluating programs and projects serving children, families and underserved communities. Prior to joining the MNCASA staff, she was Program Director for Stop It Now!, where she developed and presented trainings including Creating Circles of Safety: How to Speak Up to Keep Children Safe, Creating Safe Environments through Policy and Practice, and How Understanding and Responding to Sexual Behaviors in Children can Prevent Child Sexual Abuse. From 2002-2008, she was the Program Director for Stop It Now! Minnesota where she developed the first ad campaign targeting adults concerned about their own sexualized thoughts and behaviors. She has written articles and tip sheets for parents on a variety of topics including Sexual Safety: How to Talk with Coaches who Show Inappropriate Interest in Children. Her writing has been featured in Road Runner magazine and in USA Gymnastics' Technique magazine. She is also a trained Stewards of Children facilitator and teaches on-line classes for child care providers.
Email Yvonne Cournoyer. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7444
Jolene Engelking, SVJI Program Development Specialist
Jolene joined the SVJI@MNCASA staff in December 2016. She has a deep love of advocacy, and working to end sexual violence and other forms of oppression. This includes a focus on improving, rethinking, and strengthening systems response. Jolene started in this movement as a volunteer advocate before becoming staff at a rural advocacy program, where she gained experience training advocates, engaging the community, and working with SARTs, particularly focusing on the needs of Native American and Tribal communities. Prior to coming to MNCASA, Jolene gained experience providing national TA through Praxis International’s Advocacy Learning Center. She holds two master’s degrees, in social work and divinity, both from Loyola University Chicago.
Email Jolene Engelking.
Jude Foster, Statewide Medical Forensic Policy Program Coordinator
Jude Foster has been working with victims/survivors of sexual violence and professionals that work with them for over 20 years. She is currently the Statewide Medical Forensic Policy Program Coordinator at MNCASA. Prior to her position at MNCASA, Jude has worked in urban, suburban and rural areas throughout the state of Minnesota. Jude has worked extensively in developing and managing crisis services programs, working with and coordinating multidisciplinary teams, and providing training and technical assistance to victim service, medical forensic programs, and criminal justice professionals.
Email Jude Foster. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7450
Johnanna Ganz, SVJI Collaboration Specialist/Rural Technical Assistance Project Coordinator
Johnanna joined the SVJI@MNCASA staff in May 2016, and brings with her a deep passion for and long history with rural communities. Prior to coming to MNCASA, Johnanna was introduced to advocacy in rural areas during her two years working in a domestic violence shelter in Ohio. This experience with victim advocacy and the anti-violence field directly shaped her educational path. In 2015, Johnanna earned her doctorate from Bowling Green State University with expertise in organizational and occupational identity in sexual and domestic violence victim advocacy. After completing her education, Johnanna moved back to Minnesota and began work as the Systems Change Program Manager with the Sexual Violence Center in Minneapolis. While there, Johnanna served as the Hennepin County SMARTeam coordinator and led the team through the protocol development process. As a result of her education and experience, Johnanna has developed trainings and resources on topics such as organizational trauma, vicarious resilience in advocacy, and creating healthy environments for advocates and their organizations.
Email Johnanna Ganz. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7451
Lindsay Gullingsrud, Membership and Advocacy Services Coordinator
Lindsay Gullingsrud joined the staff of MNCASA it July, 2007. Prior to this, Ms. Gullingsrud worked as the Sexual Violence Education Coordinator in the Women's Center at Minnesota State University, Mankato (MSU-M). During her time at MSU-M, Ms. Gullingsrud established the Sexual Violence Education Program, the first point of care for students in crisis, as well as designed and implemented preventive programs addressing sexual violence on campus. Before starting her employment with MSU-M, Ms. Gullingsrud worked within Nicollet and Sibley Counties as the Sexual Assault Program Coordinator for Crime Victim Services, Inc. Ms. Gullingsrud has worked closely at the community and university levels with regards to education, outreach, and creating a coordinated systematic approach to addressing sexual violence within our communities. Lindsay is a graduate of Minnesota State University, Mankato.
Email Lindsay Gullingsrud. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7443
Jessica Jerney, SVJI Collaboration Specialist/Evaluation and Research Coordinator
Jessica brings her passion for social justice, organizational capacity building, and data-driven decision-making to MNCASA. For the last ten years she has worked with numerous youth organizations, locally and internationally, to build, evaluate, and improve programs. Jessica holds a masters of education and graduate certificate in program evaluation from the University of Minnesota.
Since 1999, Jessica has worked with community-based organizations in urban and rural Minnesota as an organizer, educator, and evaluator. Previously, she worked with NARAL Pro-Choice Minnesota leading statewide research and education efforts with community partners, such as MNCASA members, to ensure survivors of sexual assault access to emergency contraception.
Email Jessica Jerney. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7458
Mary Kinder, Grants and Finance Manager
Mary Kinder has nearly 30 years of experience as a finance manager in the nonprofit and healthcare sectors. These positions included Accounting Manager of a large hospital system in Minneapolis; Controller of a Minnesota regional HMO; and CFO of three government contract funded Minnesota nonprofits. All positions have included managing the annual audit preparation process. Ms. Kinder has also been an adjunct accounting instructor at Century and Saint Paul Colleges, both in the Twin Cities area, for the past 14 years.
Email Mary Kinder. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7448
Hannah Laniado, Sexual Violence Prevention Specialist
Hannah Laniado provides expertise on the primary prevention of power based, interpersonal violence with a specialty in implementing primary prevention within community settings. Hannah’s academic background focused on applied sociology. She attended the University of Minnesota Duluth for her undergraduate work and Minnesota State University, Mankato for her graduate studies. Professionally Hannah began her advocacy career as an intern with PAVSA in Duluth, MN and continued on to The Committee Against Domestic Abuse (CADA) in Mankato, MN where she gained experience with shelter, hospital, and legal advocacy, facilitated an eight county SART, provided 40 Hour Sexual Assault Advocacy Trainings, facilitated multiple support groups, launched a volunteer crisis response program, and co-founded a community based primary prevention initiative: The Safe Bar Initiative. Hannah has a passion for social justice, community driven solutions, and viewing primary prevention and response as a part of a much needed continuum to drastically reduce rates of sexual violence. Hannah also has a background in sales and loves to cook.
Email Hannah Laniado. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7446
Leah Lutz, SVJI Program Manager
Leah Lutz joined MNCASA as a Collaboration Specialist – Teaching and Connection Coordinator for SVJI in April, 2008. In 2015, she transitioned to her current role as SVJI Program Manager. She has over 15 years of experience in sexual/domestic violence related work. From 2003 until 2008, Leah served as the Executive Director of HOPE Center in Rice County, MN. In this position, she led a community-based advocacy organization that offers support to victims/survivors of sexual/domestic violence, provides educational support to the entire community, and collaborative support to other organizations that serve victims/survivors. Leah has been a frequent presenter at statewide and regional training/educational events. In 2004, Leah helped form the Rice County SMART Team and co-chaired the team for four years. Lea is happy to be working at MNCASA and hopes to use the lessons learned from the Rice County process to help other communities build a coordinated victim-centered response to victims/survivors of sexual violence.
Email Leah Lutz. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7447
Megan McKinnon, Communications and Resource Design Specialist
Megan McKinnon joined the staff of MNCASA in 2007 as the Office and Systems Manager. In April 2016, she transitioned into her role as Communications and Resource Design Specialist. Prior to joining MNCASA’s staff, she worked as the East African languages coordinator for an interpreting agency, and as an executive and editorial assistant at the St. Paul-based National Youth Leadership Council. She also worked for the Minnesota Senate and as an AmeriCorps VISTA with the Minnesota Literacy Council. She is a graduate of the College of St. Catherine.
Email Megan McKinnon. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7440
Caroline Palmer, Public and Legal Affairs Manager
Caroline Palmer joined MNCASA in 2008. As law and policy manager she works to develop MNCASA's policy agenda, provide technical assistance to member programs, organize trainings for criminal justice and social services professionals, conduct legal research and develop educational resources. Prior to joining MNCASA she was the Pro Bono Development Director at the Minnesota State Bar Association, Executive Director for LegalCORPS and a staff attorney at the Minnesota AIDS Project. Ms. Palmer is a graduate of Barnard College and Hamline University School of Law (where she also taught as an adjunct professor). She completed the Policy Fellows Program at the Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota.
Email Caroline Palmer. Phone: 651.209.9993 Ext. 7445
Shereen Reda, SVJI Collaboration Specialist/Minnesota Point of Contact
Shereen joined the SVJI@MNCASA staff in January 2015, and brings her passion for community engagement, training and education, and organizational dynamics to her role. She has been involved in social service work for over seven years, and began in the field of gender-based violence as the sole volunteer advocate in the West Suburban office of the Sexual Violence Center (SVC). She later joined the SVC staff; first in direct services, providing counseling, co-facilitating support groups at a women’s prison, and serving on the Sexual Assault Interagency Council (SAIC) of Carver County; then, as the Prevention Program Coordinator, where she helped SVC become the first agency to launch the Green Dot Strategy in the state of Minnesota.
Shereen completed her Master of Social Work degree at Augsburg College in 2014, and is a Licensed Graduate Social Worker. Seeing herself as a life-long learner, she uses her sense of humor and positive approach to engage others in difficult dialogues. She is tri-lingual; a citizen of three countries; and loves cooking, yoga, zumba, and the “Harry Potter” series.
Email Shereen Reda. Phone: 651.209.9993 x7452
Traci Thomas-Card, Membership and Advocacy Services Manager
Traci Thomas-Card is the Membership and Advocacy Services Manager for the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MNCASA). She began her work in the sexual violence movement in 2004, working in both direct services and prevention. Currently, Traci is responsible for developing and facilitating training, technical assistance, and support for MNCASA member programs who provide direct services to victims of sexual violence across Minnesota. Traci is currently pursuing her Ed. D. in Higher Education through the department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development at the University of Minnesota. Her current research interests include the LGBTQIA+ college student population, intersectionality, student development, campus advocacy and violence prevention.
Email Traci Thomas-Card. Phone: 651.209.9993
Jess Van Iperen, SVJI Collaboration Specialist/Case Review Resources Project Coordinator
Jessica Van Iperen joined the SVJI@MNCASA staff in January 2015. She began working in the sexual violence field in 2009 as the coordinator for the Lyon County SMART. While coordinating the SMART team, Jessica worked directly with victims of sexual assault, provided ongoing support groups for survivors, directed and presented a relationship series program for ninth grade health classes, and co-facilitated a girlsBEST group. Before joining the sexual violence movement Jessica worked in the medical field and received her undergraduate degree in Psychology from South Dakota State University.
Email Jess Van Iperen. Phone: 651.209.9993 x7455
Noelle Volin, Trafficking Policy Coordinator and Staff Attorney
Noelle Volin joined the SVJI@MNCASA staff in January 2015. She is also a trainer and consultant with Do Justice Consulting, LLC, working to increase awareness about sex trafficking and other forms of sexual exploitation and build the capacity of advocates, criminal justice professionals, and communities to assist victims and end sexual exploitation. Prior to founding Do Justice Consulting, Noelle worked as the Staff Attorney and Director of Policy and Education at a Minnesota-based non-profit serving sexually exploited women and girls. After identifying a crucial gap in the legal services available to victims, Noelle created the Criminal Justice Advocacy Program and implemented the pro-bono legal clinic. Noelle also developed and conducted specialized trainings about sex trafficking and sexual exploitation, and represented the voices of survivors and advocates on state and federal policy initiatives.
Noelle is a graduate of Hamline University School of Law and is admitted to practice law in the state of Minnesota. Before attending law school, Noelle lived and worked in Japan for over 5 years, and during that time, obtained a Masters of Public Administration with Certificate in International Peace and Conflict Studies from the International Christian University in Tokyo.
Email Noelle Volin. Phone: 651.209.9993 x7457
Shane Wethers, Office and Programs Specialist
Email Shane Wethers. Phone: 651.209.9993 x7449
Jody Zappa, Accounting Support
Email Jody Zappa. Phone: 651.209.9993 x7442