MEET THE JEFFERSON CHILDREN’S ADVOCACY CENTER STAFF

Erika Dupépé, LPC, NCC

Executive Directorerika@jeffersoncac.com

Erika is the Executive Director and former full-time Forensic Interviewer of the Jefferson Children’s Advocacy Center.  She has worked with children and families since 2001 and in the field of child abuse since 2006. In addition to non-profit management and fundraising, her areas of expertise include working with child abuse survivors and their families, forensic interviewing, child development, victim advocacy and the multidisciplinary team (MDT) approach.  She has testified in dozens of child abuse cases, provides forensic interviewer supervision and serves as an MDT and community educator. 

A founding member of the Louisiana Alliance of Children’s Advocacy Centers, she currently serves on their Executive Board, is a community representative for the Jefferson Parish Children & Youth Planning Board, a member of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children and the former Vice-Chair of the Children’s Advocacy Centers of Louisiana Program Advisory Council. She earned both her Master’s in Counseling and Bachelor’s in Psychology from Loyola University New Orleans. She is a Nationally Certified, Licensed Professional Counselor, a state qualified Forensic Interviewer and Darkness to Light Stewards of Children Facilitator. When not working, all of her free time is spent with her husband, two children and French bulldog.

Joanna Jackson-James

Office Manager/Administrative Assistantjoanna@jeffersoncac.com

Joanna is employed by the Jefferson Parish District Attorney’s Office and assigned to the Jefferson CAC as Office Manager and Administrative Assistant. She brings with her more than 20 years of experience working in the St. John and Orleans Parish school systems, in the capacity of teaching and administration. She is currently attending Tulane University, majoring in Arts & Sciences, with a minor in Business and plans to work toward her master’s in social work. When not working she enjoys indulging in quality time with her three adult children, Raymond Jr., Monteja’ and Raynard, who she refers to as her greatest accomplishment. She is known for the quote that was given to her by previous coworkers, due to her passion for educating and trying to make a difference for the scholars, “It’s All About The Children”.

Angele Thibodaux

Community Care Coordinatorangele@jeffersoncac.com

Angele became the Jefferson CAC’s first Community Care Coordinator in 2016 and now also serves as a Jefferson Parish Multidisciplinary Team Coordinator. A Paralegal by training, and the former Administrative Assistant of the Jefferson Parish DA’s Family Violence Unit, Angele has extensive experience working with survivors of child abuse and domestic violence. She completed the National CAC’s Victim Advocacy Training in 2017 and has since received Forensic Interview Training with NCAC. She regularly provides our Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Education Program throughout Jefferson Parish schools, is a member of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC), a Darkness to Light (D2L) Stewards of Children Authorized Facilitator and, most recently, a qualified Forensic Interviewer in the state of Louisiana. When not working, she spends all of her time with her daughter.

Aubrey Ziegler, LMSW

Forensic Interviewer/MDT Coordinatoraubrey@jeffersoncac.com

Aubrey is one of the Jefferson CAC’s Forensic Interviewers and Jefferson Parish Multidisciplinary Team Coordinators. She received her Master of Social Work from the University of Georgia and her Bachelor of Science in Psychology & Spanish from Tulane University. Proficient in Spanish, Aubrey completed her internships and practicums, with a focus on domestic violence and trauma, while at Project Safe, Hall County Division of Family & Children Services and Metro Centers for Community Advocacy. A former Assistant Director and Counselor in Training Director of Camp Juliette Low, she has worked with children and families since 2011. Aubrey is trained in the National CAC’s Forensic Interviewing Protocol and RADAR, is a qualified Forensic Interviewer in the state of Louisiana, a member of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC) and a Darkness to Light (D2L) Stewards of Children Authorized Facilitator. When not working, her time is spent with her husband and their two pups.

Lizzie Manasevit, LMSW

Forensic Interviewer/MDT Coordinatorlizzie@jeffersoncac.com

Lizzie is one of the Jefferson CAC’s primary Forensic Interviewers and Jefferson Parish Multidisciplinary Team Coordinators. She received her Master of Social Work from Tulane University with a certificate in mental health, addiction, and family. After receiving her Bachelor of Social Work from Saint Louis University, she completed a 2-year service as a Community Youth Development Volunteer with the Peace Corps in Mongolia. Her primary work was to build capacity with Mongolian Social Workers and promote life skill development to youth in the community. Lizzie has spent the last five years living and working in New Orleans both promoting positive youth development as Program Manager of after school programming and providing therapeutic interventions to youth in behavioral health facilities as a social work intern at River Oaks Hospital and a mental health technician at Children’s Hospital. Lizzie is trained in the National CAC’s Forensic Interviewing Protocol, is a qualified Forensic Interviewer in the state of Louisiana, and a member of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC). When not working, she loves to travel with her husband, bake and spend time with her pup.

Kelli Guise, LPC, NCC

Therapistkguise@childrensbureaunola.org

Kelli is a licensed professional, nationally certified and trauma-focus certified counselor employed by Children’s Bureau of New Orleans. She serves as one of the Jefferson Children’s Advocacy Center’s on-site trauma therapists, through a partnership with Children’s Bureau of New Orleans. Kelli received her Master of Education from the University of New Orleans Counselor Education Program with a focus on Clinical Mental Health. She completed her practicum and internships at the Jefferson Parish Department of Juvenile Services by providing individual, family, and group counseling to detained youth, as well as those on probation. Formerly with Milestones Mental Health Agency for over 6 years, Kelli has extensive experience providing individual and family counseling in the community, schools and homes. She specializes and is trained in clinical assessments (CALOCUS), and Grief and Trauma Interventions, as well as certified in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT). She is a Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children Certified Facilitator and clinical consultant of the Jefferson Parish Multidisciplinary Team (MDT), who has presented on topics including: LGBTQ+ youth; the treatment of child physical abuse, child sexual abuse, and problematic sexualized behaviors. When not working, she loves her New Orleans Saints, Jazzercise, festivals and traveling.

Johanna Mitchell, LPC-S

Therapistjmitchell@childrensbureaunola.org

Johanna is a licensed professional counselor, with supervisory and appraisal privileges, employed by Children’s Bureau of New Orleans. She serves as the Jefferson Children’s Advocacy Center’s on-site bi-lingual trauma and grief therapist, through a partnership with Children’s Bureau of New Orleans. Johanna attended Tulane for undergrad and completed her Masters in Clinical Psychology in 2005. As part of a Clinical Psychology PsyD program, she did her internship as a psychological forensic evaluator with Dr. Susan Cave in Santa Fe and completed her dissertation on bullying in the schools. Born and raised in Los Angeles, she was initially licensed in New Mexico in 2009 and started practicing in Louisiana in 2011. She specializes in psychological assessments, trauma, neurodivergence, LGBTQIA issues, and is trained in TF-CBT, EMDR, EFT and psych testing. Having worked in EMS throughout the duration of grad school, she is also a certified American Red Cross CPR/First Aid/BLS Instructor and Instructor Trainer. In her spare time, she plays the “eternal foil and chauffeur” to her college daughter, while collecting and selling rocks and gemstones.

Lugine Gray

Region 1 Child Youth Trafficking Coordinatorlugine@jeffersoncac.com

Lugine is the Regional Child and Youth Trafficking Coordinator, for the Louisiana Child and Youth Trafficking Collaborative (LCYTC), serving as the central point of contact and collaboration for agencies and victims throughout Jefferson, Orleans, St. Bernard and Plaquemines parishes regarding cases of suspected and confirmed human sex and labor trafficking.

Before joining the LCYTC, he lived abroad and first began his anti-trafficking work in Eswatini, with initiatives aimed to end the use of human trafficking and sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict to Swazi women and children and the forced commercial agriculture labor of Swazi boys. From there, he worked with similar projects located in Africa and the Middle East (Nigeria, Ghana, Djibouti, Sudan, and Syria). Upon returning back to his hometown of New Orleans, he graduated with a Master’s of Science in Disaster Resilience Leadership from Tulane’s School of Social Work, while also working full-time as the Sr. Human Trafficking Case Manager at Covenant House, where he provided direct care services to survivors of human trafficking throughout the region. He is a United States Army combat veteran and founder of the New Orleans chapter of Veterans for Peace. He also serves on the Institute of Women and Ethnic Studies’ community advisory. When not working, Lugine loves traveling, reading and spending time with his cat.