Michael Lebron

Michael Lebron is a Research Assistant at the National Police Foundation. Michael graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park, where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminology/Criminal Justice and Psychology. His research interests include domestic violence, childhood victimization, police-community interactions, and peer influence.


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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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Jane Dorsey

Jane Dorsey is the grants and contracts manager at the Police Foundation. Ms. Dorsey was the office manager at Prudent Energy Corporation for the past four years. Prior to that, she has more than 17 years of non-profit experience with The Stimson Center. Her work encompassed a broad range from office management, financial associate, grants and contracts management, and desktop publishing. Ms. Dorsey received her Bachelor of Arts in visual communications from the George Washington University.


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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 is a Senior Project Associate with the National Police Foundation providing analysis of local-level law enforcement policies, procedures, and practices. As part of the programs team, Rebecca is involved in the review and analysis of mass violence and mass demonstration critical incidents. She has supported the development and publication of technical reports of incident reviews as well as interactive e-reports specifically for field use. Rebecca has provided technical assistance to agencies on policy and practice as part of collaborative reform projects and agency requested reviews. Using her field experience, Rebecca also advises agencies on data collection and analysis, program development and management, as well as interagency and community collaboration and engagement.

Prior to joining the National Police Foundation, she served as a Crime and Intelligence Analyst with the Los Angeles Police Department, Olympic Division. She provided analytical support to the development of the new division by creating new area boundaries, mapping and documenting community resources, activities and special locations, and analyzing personnel resources and shift schedules. Additionally, Rebecca liaised with the community groups and organizations to support a smooth transition from the previous division. At the new division, Rebecca was responsible for daily crime analysis including mapping and statistical reports, led weekly crime control meetings with Command staff, and developed strategies for crime prevention and deterrence with Command, Detective, and Senior Lead Officers. She coordinated unified responses to community issues with neighboring divisions and bureaus, other local law enforcement agencies, and local community groups. Rebecca also managed divisional CompStat reports and presentations and participated in research, development and testing of systems and processes with the CompStat Division. She received numerous commendations and was awarded Civilian of the Year in 2009.

Prior to her work in Los Angeles and following her graduate work at Northeastern University, Rebecca served the Boston Police Department in a few capacities. As Program Manager in Community and Youth projects in the Office of the Police Commissioner, she managed a successful youth partnership between law enforcement, community partners and the business sector. Concurrently, she was detailed to the Youth Violence Strike Force to assist in the development of the Boston Reentry Initiative (BRI) that brought together public safety, community service providers, and faith-based partners. She was heavily involved in the creation of a critical database that facilitated information sharing among project partners. She consulted on policy and organizational development with state and federal LE partners to replicate the program across and beyond the state.

In addition to her current National Police Foundation role, Rebecca is mother to two very active children. This valuable role 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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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. Brett provides comprehensive project management for a portfolio of officer safety-related projects at the Foundation, including the LEO Near Miss officer safety initiative, the first-ever near miss reporting system for law enforcement, and the National Law Enforcement Roadway Safety Program (NLERSP), a program funded by BJA under their National Officer Safety Initiatives (NOSI) designed to reduce the number of officers seriously injured and killed on the nation’s roadways.

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), and crime gun intelligence centers (CGICs), 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 received a master’s degree in Criminology, Law and Society from George Mason University and a bachelor’s degree in Finance, with a minor in Leadership Studies, from Virginia Tech. In his 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. Additionally, he is a graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Executive Institute and the Law Enforcement in Counter Terrorism program. He is also a graduate of the Police Executive Research Forum’s Senior Management Institute for Police and the United States Secret Service Dignitary Protection Program.

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