Our Team

Carmen Garcia
Manager of Programs & Operations

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Aiasha Khalid
Deputy Director - Strategy & Impact

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Laura Merchant
Reentry Hotline Attorney

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Marvin Mutch
Communications Consultant

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Emily Juneau
Staff Attorney

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Dominik Taylor
Staff Attorney

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Rashida Harmon
Contract Attorney


Cara Palanca
Programs Assistant

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Katherine Katcher
Founder & Executive Director

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Sonja Tonnesen
Deputy Director - Program Innovation & Strategic Partnerships

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Lizzy Gilbert
Development Manager

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K.C. Taylor
Staff Attorney

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Law Clerks, Interns & Volunteers

Jacob Gindt
Berkeley Law SLPS Law Clerk


Taylor Mahaffey
Berkeley Law SLPS Law Clerk

Jason Chu
Berkeley Law SLPS Law Clerk

Nicole Canonigo
Postgraduate Intern


Abbe Anderson
Legal Volunteer

Brandon Hughes
Berkeley Law SLPS Law Clerk


Leslee Larner
Legal Volunteer

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Beile Lindner
Legal Volunteer


 Root & Rebound would not be where we are today without the hard work and dedication of volunteers, law clerks, and interns over the years. To see the team that has made it all possible, please click here.

Board of Directors



Chief Justice, Yurok Tribe

Abby is an enrolled member of the Yurok Tribe, and has been Chief Justice of the Tribe since 2008. She served as a San Francisco Superior Court Commissioner for approximately 20 years, assigned primarily to Dependency and Delinquency. Abby was the first California native to be a member of the State Bar, and to be appointed to a state judicial position. She is newly appointed by Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye, Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court to the Co-Chair of the Tribal Court-State Court Forum. Abby is a graduate of University of New Mexico School of Law.


Associate Director of College & Career Success, KIPP Bay Area Schools

Samantha is the Associate Director of College & Career Success at KIPP Bay Area Schools where she manages the team and strategy behind supporting KIPP alumni to and through college to lead choice-filled lives. Samantha also serves on the Alliance for Change leadership team, working with incarcerated men at San Quentin State Prison as they and their families, prepare to parole. She is passionate about working with all people through critical transitions to help them build their confidence, skills and social capital. Samantha holds a BA in English and Afro-American and African Studies from the University of Michigan and a certificate in College Admissions and Career Advising from UC Berkeley - Extensions.

Tamaron D. Greene

Corporate Finance Associate, O'Melveny & Myers LLP

Tamaron is a transactional lawyer specializing in corporate finance for companies whose credit profiles range from investment grade to leveraged, to middle-market, to venture-backed. Tamaron represents borrowers, lenders, issuers and underwriters in a wide variety of general corporate, acquisition, fund, leveraged, project and venture finance transactions.


Founder & Executive Director, Root & Rebound

JANET LEBAN, secretary

Executive Director, Retd., Delaware Center for Justice

Janet received her B.A. from Barnard College and her Master's Degree from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in English literature. She also studied sociology and criminal justice at Villanova University. During her career as a writer and editor, Janet joined the staff of the Pennsylvania Prison Society (PPS) as editor of their "Prison Journal." PPS is the oldest prison reform organization in the country. She held various positions at PPS, including that of Executive Director. At the time of her leaving, the “Prison Journal” became a publication of Sage Publishers. From PPS, Janet joined the staff of the Delaware Center for Justice (DCJ) as Executive Director and remained there for 20 years, retiring in December 2012. DCJ, founded over 80 years ago, provides services to at-risk youth, system-involved adults, and crime victims under the umbrella of a restorative justice philosophy.  The organization also advocates on policy issues that impact the lives of their clients.


Financial Analyst, Select Equity Group

Loren Lewallen is a Chartered Financial Analyst at Select Equity Group, an asset management firm. He began at Select Equity as an intern in 2006 and joined the firm full-time in September 2007. He received his B.A. from Columbia University (magna cum laude).





anne osmun

Senior Director, Visa

Anne is a Senior Director at Visa, where she focuses on bringing products to market.  Prior roles at Visa have included operations, strategy, planning, and analytics.  Previously, Anne was a private equity associate at Calera Capital and an investment banking analyst at Merrill Lynch.  Anne graduated from Harvard College, with an A.B. in Economics.


Vice President of Strategy & Communications, OBSERVATORY Pictures

Sarena is the VP of Strategy & Communications for OBSERVATORY, a documentary film fund. Based in the U.S., she leads investor and filmmaker partnerships, and helps oversee the company's film finishing fund. She began her career at National Geographic, and has served as both a producer and researcher for several feature-length, theatrically distributed documentaries. As a health advocate, she is passionate about preventative and food-based medicine and plans to bring innovative food retail to inner-city communities. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, George Washington University's Documentary Center, and UCLA's Professional Program in Screenwriting.


Founding Attorney, Project Legal Link

Sacha practiced worker’s rights and civil rights law for six years at Lewis, Feinberg, Lee & Jackson, P.C. in Oakland, and, before that, clerked for the Honorable Martin J. Jenkins of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. She graduated cum laude from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law and was the Editor-in-Chief of the Hastings Race and Poverty Law Journal. During law school Sacha interned with Bay Area Legal Aid, the Legal Aid Society–Employment Law Center, and the General Assistance Advocacy Project. Sacha was selected as a Northern California Rising Star by Law & Politics magazine in 2013 – 2015. She graduated with Joint Honors in Geography and Women’s Studies from McGill University.

Watani Stiner

Community Activist

Watani brings a depth of professional and personal experience to the criminal justice space, spending more than four decades behind bars, and has deep connections to the Bay Area criminal justice community. He is currently a speaker and activist in the Bay Area, working particularly in schools to use the power of storytelling to inspire young people to create a country of greatness—recognizing that “The United States is a work-in-progress, and it can only be shaped and realized by how much people struggle against the ugly and participate in the beauty.”

MARTHA TODD, treasurer

Associate, O'Melveny & Myers LLP

Martha is legal counsel at Skills Fund, LLC, an Austin, Texas-based student financing and quality assurance entity that facilitates student access to innovative and outcomes-based forms of higher education. She was previously an associate at the San Francisco office of O'Melveny & Myers LLP, where her practice focused on mergers and acquisitions. She received her B.A. from Columbia University and her J.D. from the University of Texas. 









Our Advisory Board

Airto Morales, Data Specialist, Project Rebound at San Francisco State University

Laurie Parise, Esq., Founder & Executive Director, Youth Represent

Kathi Pugh, Esq., Pro Bono Counsel, Retd., Morrison & Foerster LLP

Bertrall Ross, Esq., Assistant Professor of Law, Berkeley Law; Co-Faculty Director of Thelton E. Henderson Center for Social Justice at Berkeley Law

Leonard Rubio, Co-Chair, Board of Directors, Insight Prison Project; Advisory Board Member, National Association of Community & Restorative Justice, and Executive Assistant, Prison University Project

Jonathan Simon, Adrian A. Kragen Professor of Law and Director, Center for the Study of Law and Society at University of California, Berkeley, School of Law

Brittany Stringfellow Otey, Esq., Attorney and Clinical Professor, Pepperdine/ Union Rescue Mission Legal Aid Clinic

Watani Stiner, Community Activist

Elizabeth Wegner, PhD. Clinical Psychology, Columbia University

Steve Weiss, Esq., Regional Social Security & SSI Advocacy Coordinator, Bay Area Legal Aid

Troy Williams, Journalist, Photographer, Videographer at The Post News Group

Marilyn Barnes, M.Ed., Founder & Executive Director, Because Black is Still Beautiful

Jason Bell, Director, Project Rebound at San Francisco State University

Scott Bryant, Senior Vice President, Deposit Management Relationship Officer, Boston Private

Charlotte Cassel, M.P.H., J.D., 2014 Equal Justice Works Fellow at Florida Legal Services, Inc.

David Cowan, Director of Reintegration, Alliance for C.H.A.N.G.E; Operations Associate, Prison University Project

Audrey Fay, Southern California Field Director, Prison Fellowship

Kimberley Guillemet, Esq., Manager, LA Mayor's Office of Reentry

Charles Hodgson, MSc, PhD Student, Department of Economics, Stanford University

Annie West Honart, M. Phil, M.D., Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

Ronald Jacobi, Esq., Of Counsel, Bryan Cave, LLP

Rebecca G. Kagin, Esq., Attorney, Law Offices of Rebecca G. Kagin

Alex Lee, Esq., Associate Director of Public Interest Programs at University of California, Berkeley, School of Law; Founder and former Director, Transgender, Gender Variant & Intersex Justice Project

Elie Miller, Esq., Attorney, A New Way of Life



Our Collaborative Work

Alameda County Children of Incarcerated Parents Partnership (ACCIPP)

Bay Area Prop 47 Working Group

Professional member of CARES for Youth

Nonprofit partner of Code Alliance (Benetech) 

Free SF

Justice Reinvestment Coalition of Alameda County


Our Donors and Partners

We are grateful for the support of all of the individuals, families, corporations and foundations who have so generously donated to Root & Rebound in our founding years. We couldn't do our work without you.


To see a list of our past and present individual donors, click here