Teaira Brown

Teaira Brown joins the National Police Foundation as a Finance Assistant. Prior to this role, Teaira held positions such as Accounting Clerk, Revenue Operations Associate, and Financial Aid Advisor. Her background includes overseeing A/R, Billing, Account Reconciliations, and Vendor Management. Teaira is currently pursuing her B.S. in Accounting and Finance from Southern New Hampshire University. She is due to graduate in August 2020.


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Laura Caldwell

As Director of Development at the National Police Foundation, Laura works with leadership to establish and implement annual development strategies, prioritize opportunities, and achieve fundraising goals. She is an experienced public and private sector project manager with a background in public administration, nonprofit management, program planning, policy research and analysis, and proposal writing involving justice, human services, education, and youth and families. Laura received her Masters of Public Policy from the University of Maryland, College Park, and her B.A. in Latin American Studies from Vassar College.

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Maureen McGough, J.D.

As National Programs Director, Maureen oversees many of PF’s national training and technical assistance initiatives. Maureen joins the Police Foundation after nearly ten years with the US Department of Justice, most recently as a senior policy advisor in the Office of the Director at the National Institute of Justice (NIJ). At NIJ, she launched the Law Enforcement Advancing Data and Science (LEADS) Program, a national initiative to empower law enforcement to advance the police profession through science. She also led the agency’s Sentinel Events Initiative (SEI), an effort to learn from bad outcomes in criminal justice and support systems-level improvements to prevent their reoccurrence. She previously served as an international research specialist, overseeing the agency’s investments in human trafficking research, and as a senior policy advisor in the Bureau of Justice Assistance, focusing on preventing wrongful convictions and protecting individual rights under the Sixth Amendment.

Maureen also established numerous interagency partnerships, most recently with the DOJ’s International Criminal Investigative Training and Assistance Program (ICITAP) to support international program evaluation. She was instrumental in establishing a partnership with the State Department and the Kenya Wildlife Service to support counter-poaching efforts in East Africa. She advanced collaborative efforts with international partners including the Queensland Police Service, the New Zealand Ministry of Justice, the Canadian Society of Evidence-Based Policing, and the United Nations Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Programme Network.

She previously served as counsel in the Office of the Deputy Attorney General, where she focused on interagency efforts to counter violent extremism and prevent radicalization to violence in the US. She also served as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia and with the State Department as coordinator of AIDS relief efforts in Kigali, Rwanda.

Maureen is an attorney and earned her J.D. from the George Washington University School of Law, and her bachelor’s degree from the Catholic University of America.

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Rebecca Benson

Rebecca comes to the Police Foundation with a several years experience from police departments on each coast. She most recently served as a Crime and Intelligence Analyst with the Los Angeles Police Department, Olympic Division. The Olympic Division was one of a few new divisions that had been created in recent decades within the LAPD. Prior to the new facility opening its doors, Rebecca served on the Olympic transition team. Her team was responsible for preparing and providing analytical support to assist in the creation of new area boundaries, mapping and documenting community resources, activities and special locations as well as analyzing personnel resources and shift schedules. Following the official opening of the division, she was responsible for daily crime analysis and mapping of the division. Rebecca also led weekly crime control meetings with the Command staff and organized strategies around prevention and deterrence with Command, Detective, and Senior Lead Officers. She was also greatly engaged in preparation of monthly CompStat reports and presentations. She received numerous commendations and was awarded Civilian of the Year for 2009.

Ms. Benson began her Law Enforcement career and spent many years with the Boston Police Department. Within the Office of the Police Commissioner, she served as a Program Manager on several community and youth projects. She was detailed to the Youth Violence Strike Force to assist in the development of the Boston Reentry Initiative (BRI) as well as the other similar and expanded programs based on the success of the BRI. She was heavily involved in the creation of a critical database that allowed for intelligence sharing among project law enforcement partners. These initiatives also involved partnering with local community organizations, schools and businesses.

In addition to her current Police Foundation role, Rebecca is mother to a very active five year old. This valuable position has further developed her skills in daily preparation and planning, creative resource administration, evaluation, negotiation techniques, and crisis management.


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Julia Billings

Julia Billings comes to the Police Foundation from the Middle East Bureau at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), where she served as a Program Analyst and Gender Specialist for the Middle East, working on a wide range of issues in the Middle East region. In this capacity, she provided technical expertise and policy analysis for international development programming in the areas of gender equality, countering violent extremism, civil society strengthening, and youth integration. She led the democratic growth team to design and establish a five-year strategic development approach as part of USAID’s Country Development Cooperation Strategy (CDCS) with the Government of Tunisia. She also managed projects addressing countering gender based violence.

Julia received her M.S. in Criminology from the University of Pennsylvania and her Bachelors Degree in International Studies from Kenyon College in 2011. Her research has explored the effect of drug policy on crime in the United States and she is interested in criminal justice reform both in the United States and internationally.


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Kim Bright

Kim Bright serves as the Police Foundation’s Chief Operating Officer. Kim’s work focuses on advancing the Police Foundation’s Strategic Initiatives portfolio, including some of the highest priority programs and initiatives at the Police Foundation. These programs include developmental efforts, pilot projects, emerging collaborations and more traditional research, program development and implementation, training and technical assistance projects. Kim is responsible for working with Executive staff and others to ensure strong, effective, and efficient execution of program plans and on-time delivery of high-quality deliverables. In addition, she plays a key role in the Police Foundation’s grant and contract development efforts, focused on federal grants; state and municipal funding; and private foundation and corporate support.

She has over 19 years of experience in program and stakeholder management, including comprehensive experience in delivering key insights, strategies, and recommendations within the public and private sectors. Prior to joining the Police Foundation, Kim was a Lead Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton where she managed a multimillion-dollar technology solutions contract with the U.S. Department of Justice. In this capacity, Kim provided contract oversight, staff supervision, and subject matter expertise for the support of national policies to improve information sharing capacity and the delivery of technical assistance to law enforcement officers and criminal justice practitioners. She has a proven track record of driving cohesion and efficiency through the development of effective policies and innovative solutions. In addition, she has a strong background in equipping cross-functional staff with the hands-on leadership and direction needed to succeed. Her expertise encompasses all aspects of policy development and project management, including budget administration, strategic communications, and harnessing team strengths to improve performance. She has authored, co-authored, and contributed to several public policy publications.

Kim graduated from American University with a Master of Public Policy and from Georgetown University with a Bachelor of Arts degree. She holds a Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification from the Project Management Institute.


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Amanda Burstein

Amanda Burstein has over fifteen years of experience in project and program management, with eight years in the public safety sector before beginning her work as a Senior Program Manager with the National Police Foundation in 2019. Ms. Burstein previously served as a Program Manager at the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), overseeing national training and technical assistance programs such as the Alzheimer’s Initiatives, Officer Safety and Wellness programs, and the Research Center. Working closely with all levels of government, law enforcement and strategic partners, she facilitated the development of tools and resources to further enhance public safety initiatives. She has participated in the National Officer Safety and Wellness Working Group and the CDC’s National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health’s Public Sector Working Group, and she was staff liaison to IACP’s Research Advisory Committee, SafeShield Committee (officer safety), and Crime Prevention Committee. She also oversaw entrepreneurial efforts within IACP’s portfolio of management studies and promotional testing products. She acted as guest editor for Police Chief Magazine for several years, providing subject matter review to monthly columns and several whole issues.

Prior to IACP, Amanda worked for several nonprofits including The National Mentoring Partnership, Volunteers of America, and the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children, working in various marketing, fundraising, and programmatic roles.

Amanda received a B.A. in Clinical Psychology from Tufts University with minors in Community Health (Public Health) and Child Development and has a Project Management Professional Certification from the Project Management Institute. She will be starting a Master’s in Public Administration at George Mason University in Fall of 2019.

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Brett Cowell

Brett Cowell is a Senior Project Associate at the National Police Foundation. He received a Master’s Degree in Criminology, Law and Society from George Mason University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance, with a minor in Leadership Studies, from Virginia Tech. Brett’s areas of focus include police use of force, officer safety and wellness, and law enforcement technology.

Brett’s recent work with the National Police Foundation includes research on officer safety training, police use of force, police foot patrol, public safety use of small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS), crime gun intelligence centers (CGICs), and body-worn cameras, as well as work on the critical incident review of the public safety response to the February 20, 2016, mass shooting incident in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Brett has also been heavily involved with the development and management of the National Police Foundation’s LEO Near Miss officer safety initiative, the first-ever near-miss reporting system for law enforcement.

In Brett’s spare time, he is a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician with the Nokesville Volunteer Fire Department & Rescue Squad in Northern Virginia.


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Dean M. Esserman, J.D.

Dean M. Esserman is the immediate past Chief of the New Haven (CT) Police Department. Prior to that, he served as Chief of Police in Providence, Rhode Island; Stamford, Connecticut; and the New York State MTA-Metro North Police Department. From 1987-1991, he served as the general counsel to Chief William Bratton of the New York City Transit Police. He started his career as an Assistant District Attorney in Brooklyn, New York, and as a special Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.

He is a graduate of Dartmouth College (B.A.) and New York University School of Law (J.D.). He has held university appointments at the Yale Law School, Yale University, Yale Child Study Center, University of New Haven, and Roger Williams University. He is the past Chair of the IACP’s Juvenile Justice and Child Protection Committee.

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Ben Gorban

Ben Gorban is a Senior Project Associate at the Police Foundation where he works on projects including Collaborative Reform and Critical Incident Reviews. His areas of interest are community oriented policing in the 21st Century, law enforcement policy, and operationalizing evidence-based promising practices and policies.

Before his work with the Police Foundation, Ben served as a Project Coordinator for the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP). In this capacity he oversaw the Division of State Associations of Chiefs of Police, provided training and technical assistance, developed resources for law enforcement executives, and published articles in Police Chief Magazine. He worked on national-scope projects on topics including social media, countering violent extremism, cyber crime, and traffic safety funded by federal agencies including Department of Justice, Department of Transportation, and Department of Homeland Security.

Ben received his M.S. in Justice, Law and Society from American University in 2011, and received his Bachelors Degree in both Philosophy and Justice, Law and Society from American University in 2009.


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