Our Team

Carmen Garcia
Manager of Programs & Operations

click to see bio here


Aiasha Khalid
Deputy Director - Strategy & Impact

click to see bio here


Laura Merchant
Reentry Hotline Attorney

click to see bio here

Zachary Newman
Legal Fellow

click to see bio here

Emily Juneau
Staff Attorney

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Dominik Taylor
Staff Attorney

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Rashida Harmon
Contract Attorney


Cara Palanca
Programs Assistant

Katherine Katcher
Founder & Executive Director

click to see bio here

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Sonja Tonnesen
Deputy Director - Program Innovation & Strategic Partnerships

click to see bio here


Lizzy Gilbert
Development Manager

click to see bio here

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


Kinga Rorat
Fall Law Clerk


Nicole Canonigo
Postgraduate Intern

Abbe Anderson
Legal Volunteer


Leslee Larner
Legal Volunteer

click to see bio here

Beile Lindner
Legal Volunteer

Brandon Hughes
Berkeley Law SLPS Law Clerk

 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 Abinanti 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.



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.






Associate, O'Melveny & Myers LLP

Martha Todd is an associate at the San Francisco office of O'Melveny & Myers LLP, where her practice is focused on mergers and acquisitions. She received her B.A. from Columbia University and her J.D. from the University of Texas. 



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).



Founder & Executive Director, Root & Rebound



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 byLaw & Politics magazine in 2013 – 2015. She graduated with Joint Honors in Geography and Women’s Studies from McGill University.

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

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 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



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