Meet the 2022 Cohort of Associates and Fellows
Diane Crocker is a Professor in the Department of Criminology at Saint Mary’s University. Her work explores the use of law to address social problems, particularly those that disproportionately affect women. She is currently a member of the Canadian Domestic Violence Prevention Initiative and iMPACTS: Collaborations to Address Sexual Violence on Campus. She regularly advises government and community agencies on projects related to gender-based violence. In the coming years, Dr. Crocker is leading the evaluation of Nova Scotia’s Standing Together initiative which will be developing a provincial domestic violence action plan for the province. She is also working on other projects that work to develop approaches to evaluation that align with feminist and relational principles.
Fania E. Davis is a leading national voice on restorative justice. She is a long-time social justice activist, civil rights trial attorney, writer, restorative justice practitioner, and educator with a PhD in Indigenous Knowledge. Coming of age in Birmingham, Alabama during the social ferment of the civil rights era, the murder of two close childhood friends in the 1963 Sunday School bombing crystallized within Fania a passionate commitment to social transformation. For the next decades, she was active in the Civil Rights, Black liberation, women’s, prisoners’, peace, anti-racial violence, economic justice and anti-apartheid movements. Studying with African indigenous healers catalyzed Fania’s search for a healing justice, ultimately leading her to serve as Founding Director of Restorative Justice of Oakland Youth (RJOY) and Co-Founding Board Member of the National Association of Community and Restorative Justice (NACRJ). Her numerous honors include the Ubuntu award for service to humanity, the Dennis Maloney Award for excellence in Youth Restorative Justice, the Black Feminist Shapeshifters and Waymakers’ Award, the Tikkun (Repair the World) award, the Ella Baker Jo Baker Human Rights Award, and the Ebony POWER 100 award. The Los Angeles Times named her a New Civil Rights Leader of the 21st Century. Fania, who resides in Oakland, California, writes and speaks internationally on restorative justice, racial justice, truth processes and indigeneity. Among her publications is the Little Book of Race and Restorative Justice: Black Lives, Justice, and U.S. Social Transformation.
Alexa Dodge is a Hill Postdoctoral Fellow in Law, Justice, and Society at Dalhousie University. Her current research considers restorative responses to digital forms of sexual violence, harassment, and bullying. Alexa’s research and social justice work is informed by her interdisciplinary background in feminist theory, socio-legal studies, critical criminology, and digital criminology. She has published on topics such as: the digital distribution of images of sexual violence, criminal and restorative responses to nonconsensual intimate image distribution, the shortcomings of criminal justice responses to sexual violence, and digital technology’s impact on crime, law, and justice.
Jake MacIsaac is Assistant Director, Security Services at Dalhousie University where he focuses on promoting restorative approaches within campus security and with other campus stakeholders. Previously, Jake worked at Nova Scotia’s largest restorative justice agency, overseeing case work staff and managing 700+ youth justice referrals from police, the prosecution service and the courts annually. Jake was part of a three-person facilitation team overseeing the restorative justice process at Dalhousie’s Faculty of Dentistry in 2015 addressing climate and culture within the faculty.
Melissa MacKay has extensive experience working in higher education administration, specializing in a restorative approach on issues of inclusion, equity, sexualized violence and curriculum development. Melissa believes in, and is dedicated to, the transformative potential of a restorative approach. Melissa’s leadership has contributed to a restorative shift on campuses in residence systems and student conduct, in thinking critically about the conditions necessary to make campuses safer, and in creating more human-centred responses to incidents of sexualized violence and discrimination. Melissa has worked in community here in Nova Scotia and nationally facilitating restorative processes and building capacity through education and knowledge sharing that showcases the difference a principled restorative approach can make for individuals and systems.
Donna Coker is Professor of Law at the University of Miami School of Law (Miami, Florida). She is a longtime advocate and researcher in the field of preventing and responding to intimate partner violence (IPV) and opposing racial and gender subordination in the criminal legal system. Donna began her career as a social worker in victim shelters and community-based programs. Her experiences assisting survivors convinced her that the increased reliance on the criminal legal system response to IPV that occurred in the 1980s-90s did not serve the needs of many survivors, particularly women of color and others most vulnerable to state control. Her interest in finding a different pathway led her to study the work of Navajo Peacemaking Courts. The empirical study that resulted has influenced work in the fields of restorative justice and IPV. Her more recent research has examined restorative responses to campus sexual assault and to building school-based support for girls of color. She served as an advisory board member for A National Portrait of Restorative Approaches to Intimate Partner Violence, a survey of U.S. programmes. She is the co-creator of a public education project, Reimagining the Movement to End Gender Violence, consisting of interviews with leading activists and scholars regarding the need to refocus anti-violence activism to addressing the structural inequalities that maintain violence. In 2015, she was a co-investigator for Responses from the Field, a U.S. survey of service providers regarding their experiences with policing, domestic violence, and sexual assault. She served as an expert consultant and advisory board member for a project of the National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women, Ending Mass Incarceration, Centralising Racial Justice, and Developing Alternatives. Donna holds an M.S.W. from the University of Arkansas and a J.D. from Stanford Law School.
Jacob Glover moved to Halifax since 2009. He has background in ancient philosophy, contemporary continental philosophy, and law. His interest in restorative justice took root in Prof. Jennifer Llewellyn’s seminars when he began thinking about the philosophical overlap between relationality, restorative justice, ancient rhetoric, and network theory. His graduate work focuses on taking a restorative approach to sport in partnership with Sport Nova Scotia and is funded by MITACS and Sport Nova Scotia.
Daniel Del Gobbo is a Banting Postdoctoral Fellow at the McGill University Faculty of Law, where his research focuses on the possibilities of restorative justice and transformative justice in promoting equality for women, LGBTQ2 peoples, and other historically marginalized groups. Daniel earned his S.J.D. from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law in 2021, where he was a Trudeau Scholar, SSHRC Doctoral Fellow, and CBA Viscount Bennett Fellow. Previously, he earned his LL.M. from Harvard Law School in 2015 and J.D. from Osgoode Hall Law School in 2011. He has published widely in the areas of civil procedure, human rights, access to justice, and critical theory. Previously, Daniel served as an Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School from 2015 to 2019, where he taught two courses in ADR and restorative justice and received several awards for teaching excellence. His legal commentary has appeared in such major media outlets as The Globe and Mail, Policy Options, the Toronto Star, CBC Radio, the National Post, CP24, Lawyer’s Daily, and The Conversation. In addition to his work at the Restorative Lab, Daniel is retained as a consultant with the Cambridge Negotiation Institute, a U.S.-based think tank that focuses on new frontiers in ADR, restorative justice, and dispute systems design theory and practice.
Emma Halpern is the inaugural Graduate Fellow at the Restorative Lab. Emma is a lawyer, activist and advocate who has worked extensively on behalf of vulnerable and marginalized people in Nova Scotia. She is also the Executive Director of the Elizabeth Fry Society of Mainland Nova Scotia an organization that is devoted to improving the lives of women, trans and non- binary people through comprehensive housing supports, innovative programming initiatives, advocacy, justice system reform and through fostering and developing personal empowerment. Prior to this role Emma was the Equity and Access Officer at the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society. She was also a consultant on the provincial government restorative approaches in schools initiative and has conducted extensive research and project development around building a restorative approach to working with children and youth. In 2011, Emma was named one of Chatelaine Magazine’s Women of the Year in the category of “Everyday Hero” for her work on this project. Emma is currently working on her master of laws which focuses on the transformative opportunities born out of the pandemic’s impact on criminal justice in Nova Scotia. In particular, her research interests are in decarceration and relational justice.
Nermin Karim is an alumni of Allard Law at UBC where she graduated in 2015 with a Social Justice specialization. In her first few years, she practiced Poverty Law and Family Law, working especially with women leaving abusive relationships. She was a member of the Jane Doe Network and had the privilege of being mentored by a few fierce warriors in the ‘violence-against-women’ sector . For the past 5 years, Nermin has been the Restorative Response Program Manager at the North Shore Restorative Justice Society in Vancouver, BC. With the learning from her early years working with women victims and survivors, Nermin found great satisfaction in successfully resolving over 30 gender-based violence diversions, including sexual assaults, during her tenure as a Restorative Justice Facilitator.
Allison (Ali) Kooijman is a PhD Student in the School of Nursing at UBC Okanagan where she studies the contributions that a Restorative Approach stands to make in the healthcare context. Ali experienced harm as a patient which ended her career as a Licensed Practical Nurse. This experience, both as a former healthcare provider and patient, provides her with a unique lens that she brings to this space. Ali believes that transformation and reimagining of our healthcare system requires a collaborative effort and identifying a principled approach to serve as a foundation for doing so. Ali lives on the lands of the Syilx peoples in beautiful Coldstream, British Columbia.
Krista Smith has an abiding interest in how organizations create psychologically safe and supportive communities and workplaces. Krista practiced labour and employment law for a decade before founding Root & Branch Workplace Conflict Resolutions, which focuses on helping organizations prevent, navigate, and recover from moments of conflict and crisis. Before returning to Schulich School of Law to complete an LLM, Krista served as a research and policy lawyer for the Mass Casualty Commission. Krista’s research interests focus on how to reconcile individual agency and self-interest with the best interests of the collective using restorative approaches.