Beth Hines became Executive Director in 2018 and has been with the organization since 1991. She is a highly motivated leader committed to the advancement of Community Partners in Action’s (CPA) mission and culture. Her leadership is based on integrity, mutual respect, and trust. During her many years with the organization, Beth has been an advocate for reform while ensuring the guiding beliefs of CPA are always at the forefront of her decision-making.
Beth is collaborative by nature with the capacity to build new relationships and sustain existing partnerships. She is strategic with a track record for managing and resolving complex issues. Her strong skills in encouraging and inspiring staff, supporting participants, championing initiatives, and pursuing new opportunities has and will continue to serve CPA well.
Beth’s long history with the CPA demonstrates her commitment to team building and assuring that all parts of the organization are working toward the same goal: providing innovative, best quality services to the people in our care while supporting and developing staff.
Beth’s values are aligned with those of the agency, and its mission has become part of who she is. She is inspired by CPA’s rich history, dedicated staff, resilient participants, and core belief that people can change.
Beth has a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of Connecticut. She is the Co-chair of the Greater Waterbury Reentry Council and the Criminal Justice Division of the CT Nonprofit Alliance.
Beth resides in Bristol, CT, with her husband, Michael. They have two adult sons. Beth is highly competitive, an avid bike rider and tennis player, playing competitively for over 40 years.
Deborah Rogala, LCSW
Deb Rogala is responsible for the strategic and operational management of CPA programs. She oversees CPA’s Program Operations Directors and Facilities Manager. She oversees the implementation of strategic initiatives, serves as a liaison to CPA’s external partners, and supports the Executive Director in keeping the Board of Directors informed on programmatic achievements and challenges. She has been with Community Partners in Action since 1994.
Before being named Director of Operations in 2021, Deb was Program Operations Director for our Reentry Programs and Community Service Program from 2012 to 2021. She led the implementation of our highly successful Hartford Reentry Welcome Center, whose groundbreaking program model is the first of its kind in Connecticut. Deb also led the implementation, and currently plays an active role, in our REGIONS Residential Treatment Programs for boys as well as the RISE Residential Program for boys CPA operated from 2016 to 2019.
Deb began her career with CPA in 1994 as an intern with the Resettlement Program. She continued working with the program as a Volunteer in Service to America (VISTA) for one year. Deb was subsequently hired as a Case Manager and later became Program Manager for the Resettlement Program, a position she held from 1997 to 2012. While Program Manager, she made significant contributions to the agency’s work, including developing the pre and post-prison release case management model that is the foundation for all CPA reentry programs.
Throughout Deb’s career with CPA, she has demonstrated empathy, drive, resourcefulness, and devotion to CPA’s mission, staff, and participants. In addition, she has enthusiastically responded to gaps in services, offering leadership, management, and oversight to provide staff support and program stabilization. These various roles within the agency have deepened her expertise in best practice programming, effective management, and operations.
Widely respected in Connecticut, Deb is known for her reentry expertise and ability to maximize community collaborations. Her ability to build and maintain collaborative relationships with local, state, and federal agencies, foundations, church groups, and community partners has been instrumental to the agency’s ability to fulfill its mission.
Deb is a licensed clinical social worker with a bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Central Connecticut State University and a master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Connecticut.
Deb is an advocate of a healthy work-life balance. She believes that taking care of oneself is the first ingredient to effectively helping others. Deb loves adventure, laughter, hiking, kayaking, vacationing, and spending time with family and friends.
Lisa Maraia is responsible for the financial management of the agency. She has been with CPA since April 2015. Lisa provides leadership and direction for all financial functions and directly oversees all accounting, contract, and grant reporting. She works collaboratively with the auditors in the preparation of the financial statements, including the 401(k) financial statement, state single audit report, and the IRS Form 990.
Before joining Community Partners in Action, Lisa was the Controller at Avon Old Farms School for over 14 years where she ensured operational efficiency of the Business Office. She managed the staff responsible for student billing, accounts receivable/accounts payable, purchase orders, general ledger, fixed assets, payroll, cash management, student bank, and the school store. She administered the school’s endowment funds and restricted gifts and worked collaboratively with the auditors in preparation of the consolidated financial statements and IRS Form 990. Lisa holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Bentley College, which is now Bentley University.
Sandra Bradford-Jennings, MHA, bCRE
Sandra Bradford-Jennings plays a leadership role in the strategy and implementation of fundraising campaigns and events, grant writing and proposal management, and branding and marketing communications. She has been with CPA since 2012.
Sandra has over 30 years of nonprofit fundraising and communications experience. This includes expertise in evolving department operations and infrastructure to support a robust and successful fundraising program.
Before joining CPA, Sandra was President and owner of the Crystal Pen Group, a grant writing and communications firm she founded in 2009. She also served as Director of Development Communications and Foundation Relations for The Danbury Hospital Development Fund (now part of Nuvance Health). Sandra was also Director of Development and Communications for Family ReEntry, a community-based criminal justice organization, for five and a half years.
This is Sandra’s second career. Her first career was in healthcare marketing and communications, where she worked at the local, regional and national levels. During this time, she held staff and leadership positions with companies and organizations in New York, Washington DC, Maryland, and California, including Ernst & Young and Sutter Health.
Sandra holds a bachelor’s degree in Zoology from Howard University and a Master's in Hospital Administration from the Medical College of Virginia. In addition, she is certified in Blackbaud Raiser’s Edge Fundamentals (bCRE).
Sandra is a presenter for the 2022 BiPOC Cohort for Nonprofit Leadership, a program of the Community Foundation of Greater New Haven. From 2010 to 2018, she served on the Board of Directors and event planning committee for the Newtown Earth Day Festival and scholarship fundraiser. Sandra is also a past board member for Danbury Children First and the Fairfield County Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals. In 2007 and 2008, Sandra chaired the Communications committee for CT National Philanthropy Day.
Sandra is married and has one adult daughter. She loves dogs and sports and is a long-time doll collector. Her passion is for rare and hard-to-find vintage black dolls and dolls representing African American historical figures.
Marie MacLean, SHRM-SCP
Marie MacLean serves as a strategic business partner and advisor to the Executive Director and executive management team. In her role, Marie leads human resources strategic initiatives, placing significant focus on talent management, development, and succession planning. She also oversees employment practices and HR operations, including compensation and benefits. Marie has been with CPA since 2010.
Before joining CPA, Marie worked in the private sector. She began her career at Aetna, where she developed expertise as a strategic Human Resources business partner and in employment practices. Later, Marie moved to The Hartford, where she was the Director of the Ombudsmen’s Office and advisor to the organization’s diversity networks. She also led a range of HR strategic and operational activities at Day Pitney LLP.
Marie holds a Bachelors of Science from the University of Connecticut. In addition, she has completed significant work towards a Master’s degree in Industrial & Organizational Psychology from the University of New Haven. Marie is a Society for Human Resources Management Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP).
Noely Sanchez Velez
Noely Sanchez Velez is CPA’s first Administrative Manager and IT Liaison, a position she has held since 2021. She works as a Project Manager responsible for agency-wide projects and as the IT Liaison. Noely is a member of CPA’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Committee, Development Committee, and Governance Committee. As a member of the DEI Committee, she works closely with CPA’s DEI consultants to oversee the management of their current DEI project. In addition to her work at CPA, Noely also sits on the Hartford Data Collaborative (HDC) Data Oversight Committee helping to shape HDC’s work with data analysis. She has been with Community Partners in Action since 1999.
Before her current position, Noely was CPA’s Business Operations Administrator from 2019 to 2021 and served as the Executive Assistant to CPA’s Executive Director from 2002 to 2019. Noely's first job at CPA was as the Administrative Assistant for the Community Service Program at Hartford Community Court and later for the Beyond Fear Program in 2000.
In 2020, Noely became a published author through the Transformation 2020 book anthology that provides twenty inspiring stories of power and healing from women leaders. In March 2021, she wrote a chapter for Upward: Leadership Lessons for Women on the Rise. Each chapter is written by a woman business leader sharing the struggles and challenges faced as they made their way in the business world and also providing advice for the next generation of women business leaders.
In 2020, Noely was awarded a 100 Women of Color Award for her work in the Hartford community. Outside of CPA, Noely and her husband own JCV Freelance Photography, LLC. In addition, they volunteer their time with Connecticut’s Department of Children and Families (DCF) as photographers for National Adoption Day. They also volunteer for DCF’s Heart Gallery of America, capturing the individuality and dignity of children living in foster care in photos.
Noely attended Manchester Community College and The American Women’s College at Bay Path University with a concentration in Organizational Leadership Studies. In addition, she holds a Certification in Project Management from Post University.
Noely and her husband engage in a healthy lifestyle by staying active and sharing a mutual love for photography. Noely is a native of Puerto Rico and has lived in Connecticut since 1991.
Program OPERATIONS DIRECTORS
Derek Morrissey is responsible for all of CPA’s Alternative in the Community and Transitional Housing Programs. He also oversees CPA staff and vendors providing services for our two Juvenile Detention Enrichment Programs. Derek has been with CPA since 2010.
Before becoming Program Operations Director in 2019, Derek was the Program Manager for the Hartford AIC and Transitional House. As Program Manager, Mr. Morrissey developed strong relationships with the program’s state funder, often being called upon to lead initiatives focused on risk and recidivism reduction. He also cultivated partnerships within the community with programs such as UCONN’s Urban Service Track, the YWCA, and Copper Beech Institute to better serve participants of the programs.
Derek began his career in criminal justice in 2006, when he worked for the Children’s Home in Cromwell. He joined CPA in 2010 as a shift supervisor for our former SOAR Community Residential Program for boys. Derek later moved to the Hartford AIC as a Case Manager. He was quickly promoted to Supervising Case Manager at the AIC, which he held until becoming the Program Manager.
Derek has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Connecticut. He is certified as a Therapeutic Crisis Intervention Trainer. He also has certifications in CPR/First Aid/Automated External Defibrillator, Medication Administration, Suicide Prevention, Safe Crisis Management, and Motivational Interviewing. In 2016, he participated in the Leadership Greater Hartford’s Quest Program.
Derek enjoys coaching his son Jackson’s youth baseball, basketball, and football teams in his free time.
Kayla Callahan oversees our Adult Services, including the Hartford and Waterbury Reentry Welcome Centers, Resettlement Program, Work Release Program, and Community Service Program at Hartford Community Court. Kayla has been Program Operations Director since 2021, and with CPA since 2012.
Prior to her promotion, Kayla was Program Manager for CPA’s Manchester Alternative in the Community (AIC) Program from 2015 to 2021. Under Kayla’s leadership, the staff at the Manchester AIC successfully met program outcomes while embracing a strengths-based culture. This success resulted in high-quality and impactful services for our participants.
In addition to her Program Manager responsibilities, Kayla has taken on many additional duties. She provides oversight for CPA’s services at the Best Chance (reentry career training) Program, operated by lead partner, Capital Workforce Partners. She has also been the agency’s Liaison to several companies providing training and employment for our participants, including Ferguson Electric and Amazon. Kayla has built solid relationships with funders, community partners, and agency staff. She is the ultimate team player, always going above and beyond to meet our participants’ needs and accomplish the tasks at hand.
Kayla joined CPA in 2012 as an Intervention Specialist at the Manchester AIC, where she achieved Program Champion status in all of the intervention groups she facilitated. She later transitioned to Case Manager in Manchester and then moved to our Hartford AIC as Supervising Case Manager before returning to Manchester as the Program Manager.
Kayla graduated from Central Connecticut State University (CCSU) with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. She has completed coursework at CCSU that will lead to her master’s degree in Criminal Justice. Kayla serves as Secretary on the Executive Board of the Manchester Community Service Council and is also a member of the Best Chance Program Advisory Council.
Keisha Henry oversees CPA’s two REGIONS Programs in Hartford and Hamden and the Program Managers for the two programs will report to her. Keisha will come to CPA with a wealth of knowledge in juvenile justice, specifically as it relates to residential treatment and evidence-based practices.
Before joining CPA, Keisha worked for JBCSSD Juvenile Residential Services Division for over 20 years. Keisha’s experience includes training, development/oversight, and coordination; program development and oversight; program budgeting; DBT implementation within the REGIONS Programs statewide; and successful accreditations within the juvenile residential centers operated by JBCSSD.
While working for the Bridgeport Juvenile Residential Center as a Deputy Superintendent, Keisha was the facilities Health Care Liaison. She also provided oversight to the Medical, Mental Health, and Education departments. She then went on to start the first REGIONS program within a state-operated juvenile residential center, where she successfully implemented DBT and Performance Based Standards (known as PbS). Keisha’s success overseeing Bridgeport REGIONS led to her assisting CPA in 2021 with the development and implementation of DBT into the Hamden REGIONS Program.
During the latter part of her tenure with JBCSSD, Keisha was promoted to Program Manager. While working out of the Central Office, she assisted with oversight of both state-operated Juvenile Residential Services facilities in Hartford and Bridgeport to prepare them for DBT Certification. She assisted with implementing the first DBT Manual for the State. Keisha continued with training and helped to develop staff by providing various trainings such as Report Writing and Safe Crisis Management (SCM), for which she is a certified trainer.
Keisha is an active member of the Multiagency Restraint and Seclusion Prevention Initiative Committee, Juvenile Justice Policy and Oversight Committee Re-entry Subgroup, Development Services Group, REGIONS Juvenile Justice Process and Outcome Evaluation Committee, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy Leadership Committee.
Keisha graduated from Southern Connecticut State University with a bachelor's degree in Sociology, majoring in Criminal Justice.
Deborah Barrows is responsible for coordinating supportive programming and managing the staff and participants completing community projects. Through collaborative relationships with Judges, Attorneys, Court staff, and the Greater Hartford Community, Deborah ensures a positive and impactful experience for participants mandated to participate in a community service project.
Deborah’s philosophy is that the performance of community service can play a vital role in engaging individuals to become reinvested in the community. She believes that supporting community-based prevention and intervention initiatives is a movement toward self-sufficiency in urban communities.
Under her leadership, the Community Service Program has expanded by including more community projects like growing vegetable gardens that produce food donated to food banks and shelters. In addition, she expanded the program’s outreach to include our neighbors experiencing homelessness. Resources such as bringing community agencies onsite were set up at the court to address participants' basic needs “where they are.”
Deborah started with Community Partners in Action in 2006 in our Hartford Area Mediation Program. Later that year, she became Program Manager for the Community Service Program at Hartford Community Court. Before joining CPA, Deborah spent over 20 years in law enforcement with the City of Hartford Police Department. Supporting the philosophy of Community Oriented Policing allowed her to forge partnerships within the community and support grass-root efforts to promote safe and sustainable communities.
Deborah has an associates degree in Liberal Arts from Asnuntuck Community College and a bachelor’s degree in Psychology, with a minor in Social Work from Eastern Connecticut State University. She also has a certificate in the Black Ministries Program from the Hartford International University for Religion and Peace (formerly Hartford Seminary).
In her free time, Deborah also enjoys reading, cooking and gardening
Frances French, M.S
Frances French oversees all staff and operations for the program. She has been with Community Partners in Action since 2021.
Before joining CPA, Frances had worked with youth in CT Juvenile Detention Centers since the early 2000s. Her experience coordinating with family and guardians, juvenile probation officers, attorneys, social workers, and mental health counselors has been invaluable in the REGIONS Program. While with the Detention Centers, Frances worked as a case manager and counselor, assessing youths’ behavior challenges, mental health risks, family dynamics, and substance use history. She served as an advocate to ensure that each youth’s needs were met and that they were safe and secure while in custody at the Detention Centers. She also facilitated a smooth transition and continuity of care for youth upon release from detention.
Frances’s other past experience includes working as a vocational and domestic violence advocate for families and youth. Through her network, she assisted them with finding employment, on-the-job training, and finding safe living options.
Frances has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice and a master’s degree in Psychology from Southern Connecticut State University.
Jeffrey Greene enjoys a long list of responsibilities with CPA’s Prison Arts Program. In his role, Jeffrey is an advocate, counselor, instructor, designer, curator, conservator, art preparator, grant writer, and spokesperson. Through Prison Arts, Jeffrey encourages, enables, and broadcasts unique, positive, and constructive endeavors within Connecticut’s Correctional Institutions. Annually, Jeffrey works with over 250 incarcerated artists and over 50 “alumni” artists in the outside community. He sees his work as a powerful demonstration of the immense value of hope, creativity, hard work, and diverse opportunities within the criminal justice system. Jeffrey has been with CPA and the Prison Arts Program Manager since 1991.
Recognized nationally and internationally for his experience and accomplishments. Jeffrey curated “How Art Changed the Prison” at the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum. He also organized artwork from Connecticut prisons for inclusion in Harper’s Magazine and The Washington Post Sunday Magazine. In addition, Jeffrey lectures widely about his work for Community Partners in Action.
Jeffrey Greene has a bachelor’s degree in Studio Arts from Hamilton College. He was a recipient of a 2020 Vision Award for Arts & Education from the Charter Oak Cultural Center.
In addition to his work in prisons, Jeffrey has organized visual arts and audio projects in the outside community with the homeless and formerly homeless and with children. In 2011, he co-curated the landmark exhibition Transeuphoria in New York City, focusing on the work of transgender artists. His musical projects have led him all over the world, earning “Single of the Week” in the NME (New Musical Express Magazine) and The London Times, as well as a coveted “Peel Session” on the BBC. His latest group is named Famous Problems.
Kristy Ramsey oversees the management of the Hartford AIC and Transitional House. She brings to the position extensive program experience and specialized training in Motivational Interviewing and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Intervention. Kristy stepped into her current role in 2022 but previously worked for CPA from 2000 to 2014.
During her earlier years with CPA, Kristy progressed through several positions in our GROWTH Secure Juvenile Community Residential Program for Girls, which we operated until 2016. She first started as a Juvenile Detention Officer and over the years Kristy was promoted to Case Manager and then Assistant Program Manager. Eventually, she became the GROWTH Program Manager, a position Kristy managed for seven years where she was responsible for 35 employees.
After leaving CPA, Kristy worked in other juvenile programs for a few years before changing career paths. She served as Manager and Training Specialist for Panera. Kristy was also a recruiter for Maxim Healthcare, managing a healthcare services contract for juvenile programs throughout the state. Most recently, Kristy was a Recruiting Manager for Navarro Trucking, LLC.
Kristy has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Post University.
Melinda Clark oversees all operations for the REGIONS program in Hartford. She joined Community Partners in Action in 2023.
Melinda Clark oversees all operations for the REGIONS program in Hartford. She joined Community Partners in Action in 2023.
Sarah Drayton oversees the management and direction of the Waterbury AIC and Transitional House since 2023.
Sarah started with CPA in 2006 as the Care Coordinator for the Project FREE program, in collaboration with three other CPA Programs. After the Project FREE program ended, Sarah moved to the Hartford AIC as a Case Manager then promoted to the Supervising Case Manager role. While working at this location, an opportunity became available in Waterbury as CPA was opening the Waterbury Transitional House at the Waterbury AIC location. Sarah stepped up to the challenge and accepted the role of Residential Manager. Sarah assisted with the opening of the residential component and built a solid foundation for the program that still stands today. After serving as the Residential Manager for eight years, she was promoted to the Program Manager of the Waterbury AIC and Transitional House.
Sarah brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in both the juvenile and adult criminal justice field with her work in residential, case management, and a supervisory role. She is a 2001 graduate of the University of New Haven. She has a passion for helping others and a commitment to both the program participants and her staff.
Sonia Rodriguez oversees the operation and management of the 24 bed Work Release Program for men transitioning to the community from prison. She became Program Manager in 2019 and has been with CPA since 1999.
Sonia has developed an impressive range of skills and knowledge since joining CPA. Her first position was as Administrative Assistant for the New Britain Alternative in the Community (AIC). Sonia left CPA for a short time to become the Recovery Manager and Basic Needs Coordinator for Intercommunity Detox. Sonia returned to CPA in 2004 as the Resource Coordinator for the Technical Violation Unit for the New Britain AIC. In 2005, Sonia was promoted to After-Care Case Manager for the Work Release Program, where she helped the residents prepare to live independently and facilitated the Thinking for a Change group curriculum.
Sonia continued her growth with CPA when she was promoted in 2008 to Residential Manager for the Hartford Transitional Housing Program. She was responsible for the supervision, safety, and security of 57 men in two residential programs in the same building: the Transitional House and the Work Release Program. Sonia also supervised the Hartford AIC community service component and the Regional Transportation Unit for the Hartford AIC.
Virginia “Virg” Lewis manages the reentry services hub in Hartford, which consists of the Reentry Welcome Center and Resettlement Program. She was instrumental in the planning, launch, and successful operation of the Reentry Welcome Center, the first one in the City of Hartford. Virg has been with Community Partners in Action since 1997.
Before her current position, Virg was Program Manager for CPA’s Resettlement Program from 2016 to 2018. Under Virg’s leadership, the program expanded its workforce development services and staffing with the support of new local, federal, and private funding.
Virg joined CPA in 1997 as a Substance Abuse Counselor for the new federally-funded partnership project with AIDS Project Hartford and Latino Community Service to provide substance abuse and mental health services for people living with HIV/AIDS. Within two years, she was promoted to Program Manager for that program. When the federal funding ended, Virg was promoted to Assistant Program Manager of Hartford Alternative in the Community Program (AIC) and, within six months, to Program Manager. After seven years at the Hartford AIC, Virg briefly retired from CPA in July 2015 but returned later as a Job Developer. She then became Program Manager for the Resettlement Program in 2016.
Virg graduated from Tuskegee University with a bachelor’s degree in Nutrition and an associate’s degree in Drug Counseling.