thank you so much for your kindness in my time of need. i nowhave some HOPE.
Thank you for a wonderful life. Keep up the fantastic work on behalf of those of us who cannot fight for ourselves.
Thank you again for all your help. It is a comfort to know that there are caring people like you in this world.
My thank you seems so small compared to all you’ve done, but it comes from my heart.
A Letter from Our Executive Director
Dear Friends and Colleagues:
As many of you know, I co-founded Partners for Women and Justice in 2002 and have had the great opportunity to serve as Executive Director of Partners for the past 16 years – years of tremendous accomplishment and growth, for me personally, and for the organization as a whole.
I can remember the early days – a small office, two unpaid staff, second-hand computers, a few clients. We have come a long way - today we have 15 employees and have helped more than 4,000 victims and survivors of domestic violence. Partners is stronger than it has ever been, which is, in part, why I have decided it’s the right time for me to set a retirement date. I’ll be stepping down from my role in early 2020.
Over the past couple of years, we have accomplished important work to strengthen the organization including the creation of a strategic plan approved in May of 2017. Now almost two years into the plan, we have already achieved many of its goals – including building and strengthening Partners institutional infrastructure and formalizing an approach to advocacy to address the systemic problems domestic violence victims face in court. We are at a point where Partners is well positioned to move into the future. The organization has tremendous potential and, I believe, our committed staff and trustees and a new Executive Director will continue to move Partners forward.
Rest assured that our Board of Trustees is well prepared to take on the exciting task of finding Partners’ new leader. In fact, one of the priorities of the Strategic Plan was to develop a succession plan to ensure the timely and orderly leadership transition. That succession plan is in place and a transition committee has been formed and has already begun to assess the needs of the organization, with input from staff and other stakeholders, to determine the profile for the new Executive Director. The trustees’ priority is to find the best individual to lead Partners into the future.
I am extremely proud of Partners, its staff, Board of Trustees, and community partners, and of the important work that we have accomplished and that I am sure Partners will continue to accomplish. I am excited about the future, and very grateful that we are able to enter into this transition period in a thoughtful and strategic way.
Partners will thrive because it is driven by its mission, its dedicated staff and Board and the support it receives from stakeholders like you. We will continue to fight for victims and survivors of domestic violence so that they can build safe and secure futures for themselves and their children. I know I will continue to support Partners in any way that I can, and I hope you will too. In the meanwhile, it’s back to work!
Jane M. Hanson, Executive Director
Technology is a powerful and easily accessible tool for people to connect with each other. When abusers use technology to intimidate, control, shame, and monitor their victims, it becomes a tool of abuse.
- Use Find My Phone apps
- Hide GPS on a victim's car
- Monitor phone activity
- Install hidden video/voice on phone
- Access hidden video/voice recording machines
- Hack into email and social media accounts
- Block or fake a number to call or text
- Use a trusted ally's number to call or text
- Create a fake socila media account to impersonate a victim
- Text, call or email constantly
- Send threatening messages
- Demand victim check-in and prove location
- Post threats on social media
- Post or threaten to post intimate pictures and/or videos on social media
- Solicit sex on Craigslist or social media using a victim's photo, name and contact information
Partners' Path to the Future
Partners for Women and Justice is wrapping up its 15th year of helping victims and survivors of domestic violence escape abuse. Many of you have been with us since the beginning and have seen us grow and expand the number of clients we serve and the geographical area in which we work. In 2017, the board of trustees decided it was important to reflect on our current work while looking to the future. And so the board and staff spent six months working on a strategic plan, and I am excited to share with you the priorities adopted by the board to guide the organization going forward and to position it for long-term sustainability.
Read our latest publication, "Partners' Path To The Future" here
Meet the Trustees
Top Row (left to right): Anne Mohan, Rebecca Fitzhugh, Adam N. Saravay, Karen Murphy, Jennifer Marino Thibodaux, Randi W. Kochman. Front Row (left to right): Sheri Hecht Leonard, Jane M. Hanson, Catherine Weiss, Julie Micou Cerf, Grettel Muscato, Shoshana Schiff, Tina A. Jordan. Not Pictured: Jennifer Borek, Michael T.G. Long, Donna L. Schwartz, Christine Turgeon.
Catherine Weiss, Esq.; Lowenstein Sandler LLP; Chair
Committees: All, ex officio
Catherine runs her firm's pro bono practice and has built a lifelong career as a public interest and civil rights lawyer.
Jane M. Hanson, Esq.; Partners for Women and Justice; President/Executive Director
Committees: All, ex officio
Jane is the co-founder of Partners and has served as Executive Director since 2003. She also serves as President.
Tina A. Jordan, Esq.; Vice President
Committees: Fundraising, Executive
Tina previously represented Partners' clients as a volunteer attorney and has served on Partners' Board since 2005.
Rebecca Fitzhugh, CPA; SobelCo; Treasurer
Committees: Finance, Executive
Rebecca serves in the Forensic Accounting/Litigation Services Group at her firm and has over 18 years of experience in forensic accounting, litigation services, and public accounting.
Sheri Hecht Leonard, Esq.; Suburban Propane, L.P.; Secretary
Committees: Governance, Executive
Sheri serves as Deputy General Counsel of her company. She is a member of the New Jersey Women Lawyers Association, the Association of Corporate Counsel and the National Association of Women Lawyers.
Jennifer Borek, Esq.; Genova Burns
Committees: Finance, Fundraising
Jennifer is a partner at her firm where she chairs the Procurement Law, Government Contracts and Bid Protest Litigation Practice Group. She is also a board member of the New Jersey Women Lawyers Association.
Julie Micou Cerf
Committees: Finance, Governance
Julie is Interim Executive Director for nonprofit organizations, specializing in guiding nonprofits through leadership change. She also serves on the Selection Committee of the Nonprofit Excellence Awards.
Eric G. Kahn, Esq.; Javerbaum Wurgaft Hicks Kahn Wikstrom & Sinins, P.C.
Eric is an active trial lawyer with several multimillion dollar jury verdicts, a past President of the New Jersey Association for Justice, and the current President of the North Jersey Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates. He is also the Managing Shareholder of his law firm, supervising over 60 lawyers.
Randi W. Kochman, Esq.; Cole Schotz P.C.
Randi chairs her firm's Employment Law Department and sits on the firm's Executive Committee. She is also co-chair of the firm's Community Outreach Committee.
Michael T.G. Long, Esq.; Lowenstein Sandler LLP
Michael is a partner at his law firm and focuses his practice on white collar criminal defense. He has represented Partners' clients as a volunteer attorney.
Anne Mohan, Esq.; Riker Danzig Scherer Hyland & Perretti, LLP
Committees: Governance, Operations
Anne focuses her practice on civil litigation defense. She previously represented Partners' clients as a volunteer attorney and recognizes the need for attorneys to advocate for victims of domestic violence.
Karen Murphy, Esq.; Bressler, Amery & Ross, P.C.
Karen is a partner at her firm and practices in her firm's Environmental Law practice group. She previously represented Partners' clients as a volunteer attorney.
Grettel Muscato; Mountainside Medical Center
Grettel is the Director of Community Services and Volunteers for the medical center and has spent her 30 year career working in public health and hospital administration. She is passionate about working with underserved communities who have access to few resources.
Adam N. Saravay, Esq.; McCarter & English, LLP
Adam is a partner at his firm and focuses his practice on employment law as well as class action and multidistrict litigation. His pro bono work includes representing Partners' clients, advising charitable organizations on employment issues, and submitting friend-of-the-court briefs to the New Jersey Supreme Court on behalf of various non-profit groups.
Shoshana Schiff, Esq.; McManimon, Scotland & Baumann, LLC
Committees: Governance, Fundraising
Shoshana is a partner at her firm and focuses her practice on insolvency matters, litigation and redevelopment law. She is also active in a number of professional organizations and serves as an officer of the Essex County Bar Association.
Donna L. Schwartz, Esq.
Committees: Program, Finance, Operations, Governance
Donna became involved with Partners nearly 17 years ago as a volunteer attorney while in private practice. In 2006, she joined the Board of Trustees, serving in numerous positions. From 2012-2017, she served as Board Chair. Donna continues to be an active trustee while pursuing her interests in real estate.
Jennifer Marino Thibodaux, Esq.; Thomson Reuters Practical Law
Jennifer is a Senior Legal Editor at her company and responsible for New Jersey litigation. She represented Partners' clients as a volunteer attorney and previously co-chaired the Spring Benefit Committee.
Christine Turgeon, CPA; PricewaterhouseCoopers
Cristy is a Washington National Tax Services partner who leads the firm's Accounting Method Services practice. She also serves as the Chair of the Metro Women in Tax Committee, tasked with the development and advancement of PwC's female professional tax partners and staff.
Anu Upadhyay, M.D.
Anu is a board certified adult, child, and adolescent psychiatrist and presently serves as the President of the New Jersey Psychiatric Association (Central Chapter). She is an Associate Professor at Rutgers - RWJ Medical School where she has taught for over a decade.
Celebrate Hope 2020 Spring Benefit
Save the Date!
Wednesday, May 6, 2020
6:00pm - 9:00pm
481 Eagle Rock Avenue
At the event we will honor:
Partner in Hope Award
Jane M. Hanson, Esq.
Co-founder and Executive Director
Partners for Women and Justice
Partner in Hope Award
Nancy A. Washington, Esq.
Senior Vice President and General Counsel
New Jersey Resources
Partner in Justice Award
Irene Hurtado, Esq. and Kelly Garrone, Esq.
McCarter & English, LLP
To sponsor, purchase tickets, or donate click here.
For a list of sponsors, click here.
NJSBA Family Law Section Holiday Party
The New Jersey State Bar Association Family Law Section hosted its annual holiday party on December 12, 2019 at Galloping Hill Golf Course in Kenilworth. It was a wonderful evening that included a silent auction, tricky tray, and 50/50 raffle. The Family Law Section very generously donated all of the proceeds from the event - over $14,000 - to Partners. Thank you to the New Jersey State Bar Association Family Law Section!
From Left to Right: Carrie S. Schultz, Madeline Marzano- Lesnevich, and Jane M. Hanson, Exective Director of Partners.
Michele Lefkowitz, Director of Legal Programs for Partners, spoke at the event.
The Support Squad
On a Mission to Help Victims of Domestic Violence get Restraining Orders
Our vision is to have a passionate and determined group of monthly givers on a mission to help victims of domestic violence get restraining orders. Your support will provide consistent and dependable revenue to help victims of domestic violence.
We want you to be a part of it!
Click here to join The Support Squad and become a monthly donor.
Here is what you can expect when you join:
*You will become part of a compassionate community of supporters
* The opportunity to mingle with Partners' attorneys and court advocates (details to follow in the spring)
*Regular updates on the impact of your donation
*The thanks of all the victims who you are helping to become survivors
Annual Report 2019
Partners for Women and Justice empowers low-income victims and survivors of domestic violence to build safe and secure futures for themselves and their children by providing equal access to justice. We offer quality legal assistance in domestic violence and family law matters.