Susan had a long career in nonprofit financial management in Boston. She was the director of finance for the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corp. and consulted with several other housing and economic development organizations. She taught managerial accounting and financial management as an adjunct instructor at the School of Community Economic Development at Southern New Hampshire University for 15 years, after earning her master’s degree in CED from that program.
Susan and her wife moved to Rockingham in 2009 where they run a small farm. Susan worked for Southeastern Vermont Community Action for 8 years, first as an energy auditor, then as coordinator of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program for Windham and Windsor counties. She sings in several local choirs and plays ukulele. Susan and her wife hosted CASP’s first asylum guest in 2017 and have been involved as volunteers since CASP’s inception.
Christine moved to Vermont seven years ago to attend Sterling College, where she studied Ethnoecology and Social Change and developed a strong love for community organizing through facilitating an active environmental justice affinity group. She has worked with Groundworks Collaborative for more than three years, first as an Americorps volunteer and then as Foodworks Coordinator, where she now manages our area’s busiest food shelf. She deeply values the connections she is able to make with the community through this work and continuously seeks to create an environment where all people feel respected and welcomed to access nourishing food in whatever way works best for them. Christine also co-chairs the Windham Region Hunger Council and serves as a core member of other local groups determined to make systemic changes to our local food system beyond emergency distribution through collaboration and innovation. Christine is a vipassana meditator and regularly attends and volunteers at silent meditation retreats in Shelburne Falls, MA. She loves to travel, having spent much time farming around the U.S. and South America. She lives in Brookline, VT, with her partner, cats, dog, and chickens.
Jessa served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Jamaica, working with the Southern Trelawny Environmental Agency, an organization promoting environmental and economic development in the ecologically-significant Cockpit Country. After the Peace Corps she taught at Outdoor School in Portland, OR, before moving to Honduras where she taught second grade in the central highlands near Lago de Yojoa and then managed a white-water rafting company on the Rio Cangrejal. After two years in Honduras, Jessa moved back to Oregon and worked with Latino families in Big Brothers Big Sisters. Desiring to better understand intercultural communication, Jessa moved to Vermont where she earned a Masters in International Education at the School for International Training (SIT). Currently, Jessa works in the Admissions Office at The Putney School, where she continues to teach intercultural communication with both international students and domestic students going abroad.
Karen spent 25 years in New York City as a physician in HIV and internal medicine before moving to Brattleboro, Vermont, in 2017. Following a two-year stint with a local primary-care practice, she retired and, interested in the mission of supporting asylum seekers, joined CASP. She had previously served two short-term medical assignments in disaster areas following an earthquake (Haiti) and a hurricane (New Orleans) and had found that working with victims of such catastrophes – as well as an underserved population in urban NYC – was uniquely challenging and rewarding.
In CASP she will be identifying healthcare providers in the local area for our guests’ medical needs as well as exploring other health-related support available to them.
Karen was born in Youngstown, Ohio, and received her medical degree from George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences.
A Chicago native, Dempster trained as an artist and worked as a professional actor for a dozen years, touring and playing in Equity regional theater. After meeting his wife and co-board member Dorothy, he decided to give up show business and settle into the life of a licensed New York private investigator. Several years ago, he and Dorothy moved full-time to Rockingham, VT, to be with children and grandchildren.
Born in San Jose, CA, and with a background that includes such diverse pursuits as a licensed movie projectionist and illustrator for books and articles by the New York Times and Daily News, Random House, Scholastic, and Dell Publications, Dorothy settled into a seventeen-year career teaching 8th-grade English. After two years working as a one-on-one instructor for students with dyslexia at the Stern Center, she is now a learning coach for high school students and post-graduates at Kimball Union Academy in New Hampshire.
Francie’s professional life was committed to public school education, culminating in a 15-year tenure as principal of the Marlboro School. During retirement she has explored a wide variety of interests, including volunteering at the school several days a week. She also serves on the board of the Marlboro Alliance, an umbrella organization for community service groups, and on the board of the Hogback Mountain Conservation Association. She is a member of Putney Friends Meeting; through the Quaker belief that there is that of God in everyone, she has become interested in working with individuals and families who are seeking asylum.
Teacher, craftsperson, wife, mother and grandmother, Susie was born in Grand Rapids, MI, but has lived and worked in Saxtons River for the past 48 years. She’s served for many years on the boards of a local social service agency and an arts organization, and she has co-created and volunteered with various peace, justice and environmental groups. Susie has performed with various choir groups, and she and her husband maintain a large organic vegetable garden.
Judy has been living part-time in Windham County since the 1980s. Since she retired in 2011, she and her husband, Bob Sartini, have been spending much of their time at their Rockingham home. She currently volunteers with Main Street Arts, the Nature Museum, and the Windmill Hill Pinnacle Association as well as CASP, for which she is currently helping to identify lawyers who are willing and able to represent CASP guests in asylum proceedings. She also enjoys playing the ukulele; gardening; following the Red Sox, Patriots, and Bruins; and spending time with her three grandchildren, two of whom recently moved back to New England.
Judy’s first career was as a copyeditor at Random House and Yale University Press. After that, she got her law degree and then served as a lawyer in the public sector at the municipal, state, and federal levels for 35 years. In her most recent position, as a staff attorney for the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, she assisted the court in writing decisions in many immigration cases, including appeals from the denial of asylum.