As a natural leader, Jill OBarske has proudly served on the Center for Victim and Human Rights board since 2012. She has over a decade of experience in sales, marketing, and management after graduating from Purdue University, and she currently works as the Manager of Partnership Engagement at DeVry University. Her decision to join the Center for Victim and Human Rights was a personal one – having witnessed domestic violence affect family and friends, and seeing the ripple effect of the social, mental and physical harm done. Becoming a part of something greater and championing the cause of this organization has forever changed her life in an amazing way. Jill lives in Brownsburg with her husband Mike, daughter Leia, and dog Sakai.
Sean grew up in Hancock County just east of Indianapolis. He attended college at IUPUI and has lived all his adult life on the Northside. Sean started his career in the restaurant business as a bartender and quickly became a buyer of beverage and food components. He worked for 17 years as a beverage director, chef, GM, R&D Chef, and owner/proprietor before going over to the wholesale beverage business. He currently is a Premium Whiskey Specialist with the Republic National Distributing Company. Sean enjoys a well-made boozy cocktail with neighborhood friends, or relaxing home time with his wife and two children. He hopes to contribute his skills in sales and relationship building to the CVHR for fundraising and event promotions.
A former client of the Center for Victim and Human Rights, Manoj Rana personally understands the incredible impact that the organization has on the health, safety, and stability the individuals it serves. After surviving an arson attack that burned 95% of his body, the Center for Victim and Human Rights provided Manoj with pro bono services for the next five years, helping him to successfully file for his U-Visa, his annual work authorizations, and eventually his green card, allowing him to receive the intensive medical care he so desperately needed to survive. Today, Manoj is proud to say that he not only survived, but that thanks to the support of the Center for Victim and Human Rights, he has thrived. After receiving his B.S. in Computer Science from Purdue University Calumet and his MBA from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business, Manoj served as a Project Manager in the Financial Planning and Analysis group at Indiana University Health before becoming the Senior Associate in Financial and Capital Planning group at Hall & Associates, LLC.
Promoting justice for victims and crime and human rights abuses has always been a passion of Melissa Arvin’s. After graduating from Butler University and the University Of Illinois College Of Law, Melissa put her passion to work by serving as the sole prosecutor Champaign County of Illinois State’s Attorney’s Office Domestic Violence Unit for the next three years. When she returned to Indianapolis in 2003, she served on the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office Domestic Violence Unit before joining the Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Unit, where she continues to work today as part of the Special Victims’ Team. Melissa has conducted more than eighty (80) jury trials to date, including cases involving domestic violence, stalking, serial rape, child molestation, and homicide cases and is proud to lend her expertise to the Center for Victim and Human Rights as a member of the board.
Growing up in Cyprus, a politically and physically divided country, Marios always knew he wanted to fight for justice and equality. Pursuing his dream, he moved in the United States in 2006 where he attended Indiana University, Bloomington and graduated with a BA in 2010. In 2013 he graduated Indiana University Maurer School of Law and was immediately hired at the Marion County Prosecutor’s office where he seeks justice for victims of violent crimes, specifically, sexual crimes and child abuse. As an immigrant and a strong advocate of justice and equality, Marios has dedicated his career to fighting for justice and becoming a part of the board of directors for Center for Victim and Human Rights is one of the proudest achievements in his life.
Kate Bathon Shufeldt is the CEO of Thrive Nonprofit Solutions, a nonprofit and public sector consulting firm specializing in program planning and evaluation, grant writing, and board development. She obtained a Master in Social Work from Saint Louis University and a Master in Public Administration from Indiana University South Bend. Her interest in issues the CVHR addresses began in college where she took on internships at the Crime Victim Advocacy Center, Legal Advocates for Abused Women, and the Center for Victims of Torture and War Trauma. Since then, she has gathered 10 years of experience working with agencies addressing intimate partner violence, juvenile justice, after-school education, child welfare, and substance abuse prevention. She founded Thrive in 2016 after working in nonprofit, for-profit, and governmental agencies in Indiana, Missouri, Michigan, and Arkansas. Kate lives in Indianapolis with her husband, Greg.
Upon earning his BA from Indiana University in 2007, Andrew Keeler began volunteering as an ESL instructor in Louisville, KY where he discovered a passion for social justice and giving back to his community. After earning his MPA from the IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs in 2013, Andrew moved to the New York City area where he worked for an organization that provided free legal services to nonprofit organizations throughout New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. He moved to Indianapolis in 2015 to join the IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy as its Corporate and Foundation Relations Manager. In seeing how the CVHR represents victims and empowers those who often lack resources and a safe environment, he was moved to join the Board of Directors to help advance the cause of justice in the Indianapolis community.
Heather K. Sager is passionate about the intersection between policy and communications. A proud Queens, New York native, she has worked in public policy and communications for over a decade. After earning her JD at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law, Heather worked in South Asia on reproductive rights and human rights access. Upon returning to New York, she stumbled into a career in politics and government, and has loved it ever since. She has continued her work in women’s rights and reproductive justice through leadership with a number of nonprofits, work that she continues to this day. She relocated to Indianapolis in late 2016, and is currently the Policy and Communications Director for the Cancer Section of the Indiana State Department of Health. She is excited to bring her varied experience to the CVHR board. Heather currently resides in Indianapolis with her husband and two excitable dogs, where she spends her free time volunteering and exploring Indy.
Jacqueline Ackerman has worked for the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy since 2012, beginning as a project coordinator in the research department before transitioning to her current role as assistant director for research and partnerships with the Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI). In her current role at WPI, Jacqueline manages all aspects of research conducted by the Institute on gender and giving, in particular a multi-million-dollar research grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and also develops partnerships for WPI’s educational programs. Jacqueline holds an MPA from the Indiana University—Bloomington School of Public and Environmental Affairs, and a BA from Anderson University in Anderson, Indiana. Jacqueline grew up in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and now lives in Indianapolis. Jacqueline joined the Center for Victim and Human Rights as a way to lend her expertise in nonprofits and philanthropy, and to become more deeply involved in the local Indianapolis nonprofit community.
The Center for Victim and Human Rights (CVHR) is a 501(c)(3) organization that was established in 2008 with the specific purpose of providing comprehensive legal representation to victims of crime and human rights abuses, who often lack the safety and resources necessary to access available legal remedies.