Who We Are

OUR PEOPLE

Eva E. Marszewski, O. Ont., L.S.M.

Founder and Chief Executive Officer

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emarszewski@peacebuilders.ca

EVA'S BIO
Eva is passionate about restorative justice and creating more just and peaceful communities that support youth to succeed. She started running restorative justice programs for youth in Toronto in 2002. She is a former Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, where she taught “Law and Social Change: Restorative Justice”. Eva was one of the founders of the SPIDR youth initiative and YouCAN!. She is a member of the Board of Directors of SPIDR (now ACR), and a member of the Executive of the Ontario Bar Association, ADR Section.

For her pioneering work in adapting Peacebuilding Circles to Toronto’s diverse communities, Eva was awarded the prestigious Law Society Medal from the Law Society of Upper Canada, the YMCA Peace Medallion in 2006, the Canadian Congress on Criminal Justices’ Crime Prevention Award in 2007, and the Dianne Martin Medal for Social Justice Through Law in 2009. Eva became a Fellow of the Ashoka Foundation in 2010 and was the first recipient of the Roy McMurtry Community Service Award in 2013. Eva was most recently awarded the 2015 Order of Ontario, which is the province’s highest official honour recognizing her high level of individual excellence and achievement in restorative justice.

Elisha Muskat

Executive Director

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emuskat@peacebuilders.ca

ELISHA'S BIO
Elisha is a social innovator and experienced non-profit executive. She is inspired by the possibility that we can make the world a kinder and more equitable place through new and scalable solutions.

Elisha was previously the Canadian Director of Ashoka, a global organization focused on finding and scaling the most game-changing social innovations. She served as Co-Chair of Civic Action’s Emerging Leaders Network (ELN) from 2016-2017, a network devoted to promoting collaborative civic leadership in the GTHA. She is a board member of Building Up, a social enterprise that trains individuals who face barriers to employment with skills in environmental building retrofits.

Elisha started her career in youth development, building and running programs in Toronto, New York City and Syracuse. Elisha has an MBA from the Schulich School of Business at York University and a BA in Psychology from McGill University. When not working to change the world for the better, Elisha can be found riding her bike around town with her partner and two young kids.

Jody Dunn

Restorative Justice Programs Manager

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jdunn@peacebuidlers.ca

JODY'S BIO
Jody Dunn is a social service professional with a wealth of experience in team management and front-line service delivery.  She has held many positions in early childhood, youth justice and educational environments, and has specialized training in culturally reflective services, social justice, and client-led interventions. Her professional knowledge of child and youth development combined with her life experiences help her to personally relate to some of the challenges and barriers that youth experience on a daily basis.

As the Restorative Justice Programs Manager at a youth courthouse, Jody utilizes her skills and experience to provide restorative justice supports to youth that are experiencing conflict with the law. She strives to ensure youth have a meaningful experience; that they finish the diversion process with a greater appreciation for the positive skills that they possess and a better understanding of how they can move forward to achieve their goals.

Prior to her position at Peacebuilders, Jody Dunn was the Program Director of a youth-led justice organization that provided reintegration supports to youth of African descent in Toronto. Jody is currently a board member of Harriet Tubman Community Organization and also sits on the Catholic Children’s Aid Society of Toronto Advisory Group for Services to African Descent Families.

Phillip Chuck Jr.

Community Engagement Coordinator

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pchuck@peacebuilders.ca

PHILIP'S BIO
I have chosen to walk down the road of restorative youth justice not because I am a “GOOD MAN” that wants to participate in idea of change. Rather, I stepped onto this road of beliefs and hopes for youth as a “FLAWED MAN” who recognizes his own accountability in the hurdles that he now has to leap, as well as the contributions that he has made to the cycle of violence that persists and torments our communities.

Despite my own accountability, I understand the socio-economic conditions that at one point armed a child who was lost, lacking a sense of identity, home and safety with a gun and bag of crack and told him, that this was the only way get “HIS”. So now as this “FLAWED INDIVIDUAL” I see the necessity for change, for actual change, the need to disarm our children and rearm them with knowledge of self and the recognition that despite the hindrance of the socio-economic circumstances that there is hope, identity, home and safety for them.

Eliana Paredes

Circle Resource and Volunteer Coordinator

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eparedes@peacebuilders.ca

ELIANA'S BIO
Eliana believes that alternative dispute resolution and restorative practices are not only progressive, but also transformative and uses her educational background and training to support young people in conflict with the law.

The judicial court process can be discouraging and disheartening for young people and Eliana strongly believes that best way to support youth in conflict and to prevent them from continuing within the criminal justice system is to empower youth and help them build on their own strengths to move forward in a way that is positive and meaningful.

Eliana is a graduate of the Humber College Alternative Dispute Resolution program and has a BA in Criminology with a specialization in socio-legal studies. In her free time, Eliana enjoys eating and cooking, painting, knitting, sewing, and restoring old furniture.

Erica Lalonde

Restorative Schools Manager

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elalonde@peacebuilders.ca

ERICA'S BIO
Erica has worked with youth for 14+ years in a variety of settings, including treatment centres, community organizations, and youth shelters, and has been involved with schools directly for the past 10 years. A firm believer that youth are youth-experts, she strives to increase confidence and capacity in the young people she serves in order to support them in finding a platform to share their voice.

Erica Lalonde completed her undergraduate studies in Psychology and Inclusive Education through Mount Royal University and Athabasca University, and is currently working towards her masters in Counselling via distance learning. As the Restorative Schools Programs Manager, Erica is working with educators, police, community organizations, and young people to interrupt the school-to-prison pipeline and better incorporate restorative practices into Toronto schools.

Ali Belisle

Restorative Schools Coordinator (Eastdale Collegiate Institute)

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abelisle@peacebuilders.ca

ALI'S BIO
Ali is committed to helping youth and their families navigate the educational system. With a focus on capacity-building and social change, Ali hopes to provide youth with a space where they can gain the knowledge and tools needed for self-reflection and empowerment to make positive changes in their lives and communities.

Ali has a BA and BSW from York University and first became interested in restorative practices as a volunteer Youth Justice Conference facilitator in northern Ontario. In her spare time, Ali likes to watch movies and read books, watch more movies and read more books.

Rachelle Bloomfield

Restorative Schools Coordinator (Central Technical School)

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rbloomfield@peacebuilders.ca

RACHELLE'S BIO
Rachelle has seen the negative impacts of the youth justice system on  racialized, Aboriginal, and marginalized youth in both her personal and professional life and believes that restorative justice can help undo the negative impacts of the criminal justice system for young people and their communities. Rachelle has over six years experience working with youth in counselling and residential treatment, case management and outreach support.

Because of her experience and the experiences of the countless people she’s encountered along this journey of life, she always aims to show youth that they can overcome the obstacles they will experience and that it really is true, “it’s beauty in the struggle, ugliness in the success.” (J.Cole – Love Yourz). In her spare time, Rachelle likes to write, listen to music, workout and watch a wide variety of shows from Real Housewives to The Originals to anything on the VICE channel.

Laura Sardella

Youth Justice and Advocacy Lawyer

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lsardella@peacebuidlers.ca

LAURA'S BIO
It is Laura’s passion for social justice that led her to her role at Peacebuilders, a passion that grew from her volunteer work with stateless persons in the Dominican Republic. Through this work, Laura gained an appreciation for the importance of a responsive, equitable and accessible justice system.  She later pursued her graduate research in this area, focusing on a justice system’s role in protecting and advancing international human rights and human development, and obtained her Master of Arts degree in Political Science from York University in 2009.

After graduate school, Laura went on to obtain a law degree from the University of Windsor in 2012.  She spent much of her time during law school volunteering at Windsor’s Community Legal Aid Clinic, providing legal assistance to low-income community members.  She also volunteered at Justice for Children and Youth, a legal aid clinic in Toronto, where she came to understand the unique relationship between youth and the justice system in Toronto. This work helped direct her commitment to advocating for social justice toward youth in her own city.

Before joining Peacebuilders, Laura practiced civil litigation at a personal injury firm in Toronto, where she advocated for the rights of injured people and people living with disabilities.  In addition to her law degree and master’s degree, Laura holds an Honours BA in Political Science and History from the University of Western Ontario.

Sara Fruchtman

Communications and Public Policy Coordinator

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sfruchtman@peacebuilders.ca

SARA'S BIO

Carl Chu

Director of Financial and Fundraising Management

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cchu@peacebuilders.ca

CARL'S BIO
Carl has always been passionate about helping others and pursued a career in the not-for-profit sector to be able to do this work full-time.

Carl was educated in Washington State and Ontario, and holds an MBA degree from Gonzaga University and a Master of Divinity degree from Tyndale Seminary. He also completed two bachelor degrees in Human Resources Management and Economics, along with a diploma in Information Systems with honours. Initially working in the commercial sector, Carl was the Senior Territory Manager at ViewSonic and worked with Fortune 500 companies across Canada.

Moving to the non-profit sector, Carl served as Director, Donor Programs at Yonge Street Mission, and as Director of Organizational Effectiveness and Systems Management at Hong Fook Mental Health Association. In his spare time, he loves to spend time with his family, his orange tabby cat and watch movies.

Dhiana Alfonzo

Bookkeeper

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dalfonzo@peacebuilers.ca

DHIANA'S BIO
Dhiana is committed to Peacebuilders mission and has been on the team since its founding.

Dhiana studied accounting at Shaw College and has been working as a bookkeeper since 2001. Born in Venezuela, Dhiana is an active member of the Venezuelan community in Toronto.

In 2003, she co-founded the nonprofit organization, Foundation Cultural Alma Llanera and is currently the vice-president of the board. Fundacion hosts fundraising events that celebrate the culture, music and food of Venezuela and use the money raised to provide educational and healthcare support to young people in Latin America, including 9 annual scholarships for Venezuelan children. In her free time, Dhiana likes to travel, take photographs, and play outdoor sports.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Kristina Arena
Jill Blakey
Maureen Callahan
Michael Ceccarelli
Adam Delva
Paul Dempsey
Carol Denman
Jordan Eizenga
Andrew Freedman
Geoffrey Goad
Dorion Kingsmill
Melanie Langill
Trish Nixon

HONOURARY PATRONS

The Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean
C.C., C.M.M., C.O.M., C.D.
27th Governor General and Commander in Chief of Canada (2005-2010)

The Honourable Louise Arbour
C.C, G.O.Q.
Counsel, Borden Ladner Gervais LLP

The Honourable Warren K. Winkler
O.C., O.Ont, Q.C. L.L.D. (Hon.)
Former Chief Justice of Ontario

The Honourable Roy R. McMurtry
O.C., O.Ont
Former Chief Justice of Ontario

COUNCIL OF ADVISORS

Professor Kathy Bickmore
Professor Anthony Doob, C.M., F.R.S.C.
The Honourable Glenn A. Hainey
Barbara Murray
Paul Stoyan
Barry Stuart
Ryan Teschner