Shamere McKenzie

Shamere McKenzie is a consultant, activist, subject matter expert on human trafficking and a sought-after award winning internationally recognized speaker and trainer. Turning her past adversities into an opportunity to liberate and protect others, Shamere has brought about social and political change in America and around the world.

Shamere has a strong passion for education and policy and is the Chief Executive Officer for Sun Gate Foundation, an anti-trafficking organization that provides educational opportunities for survivors of human trafficking. Additionally, she serves as the co-chair for the victim’s services committee of the Maryland State Human Trafficking Task Force. As a former Program Director, she authored an anti-trafficking program from the ground up and oversaw an emergency residential program for adult survivors of human trafficking.

In 2018, Shamere responded to a call from the Ministry of Justice in her birthplace, Jamaica, and currently serves as the first appointed Anti-Human Trafficking Ambassador for Jamaica.
Shamere works tirelessly to raise awareness on human trafficking by speaking at universities, conferences, community events, and consulting with government officials around the world. She has trained a variety of professionals on how to identify and respond to victims of human trafficking, including the FBI, Homeland Security, Bureau of Diplomatic Security, churches, hotels and airline staff to name a few.

Her lived experiences with sex trafficking have been featured in several books including a college textbook focused on social justice. In addition, her story has been featured widely, on television, radio, documentaries, and in blogs. Her most recent documentary was released on the island of Aruba on September 25, 2018 entitled False Promises. The documentary serves as a tool to educate youth in the Caribbean about sex trafficking.

In 2015, she graduated from Loyola University Chicago with her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice. Additionally, she serves on several boards, advisory boards and speaker’s bureaus and have received numerous awards in recognition for her work.

Her strong determination, passion for success and her faith in Jesus Christ helps her to keep her eyes on the prize. Shamere does not consider herself a victim because she is no longer enslaved; she is not a survivor because she is more than surviving; but, she considers herself a liberator – one who has broken free from the chains of her past, determined to pave the way for others who have been enslaved.

Dr. Kari Oyen

Dr. Oyen, PHD, LP, NCSP, is the Program Director and an Associate Professor of School Psychology for the University of South Dakota. She is also a Licensed Psychologist in the State of South Dakota. Prior to this appointment, Dr. Oyen was a practicing rural school psychologist for ten years.

Dr. Oyen is a state coordinator for Multi-tiered Systems of Support/Positive Behavior Interventions and Support project in the State of South Dakota and sat on the Special Education Interim Legislative Committee as a Governor appointee. Dr. Oyen’s research focuses on risk and protective factors that lead to student outcomes as well as the role of advocacy in public service settings. Her peer-reviewed research has been published in Contemporary School Psychology, School Psychology Review, Psychological Services, and The Rural Educator.

In addition, she is a Past-President and Past-Chair of Government Professional Relations for the South Dakota Association of School Psychologists and is currently the Government Professional Relations Committee Chair for the National Association of School Psychologists.

Dr. Brooke Jones

Dr. Jones is a Child Abuse Pediatrician at Child’s Voice in Sanford Medical Center. She completed her medical training at the University of Kansas School of Medicine in 2011. She went to the University of Louisville to complete her residency training and became board certified in Pediatrics in 2014. She stayed at the University of Louisville for her fellowship training with the Kosair Charities Division of Pediatric Forensic Medicine. During fellowship, Dr. Jones received her master’s degree in Clinical Investigation Sciences. She started at Child’s Voice in September 2017 and became a board-certified Child Abuse Pediatrician in December 2017. She is an assistant professor of pediatrics with the University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine.

Clinton Sperle

Clint Sperle, M.A. received his degree in Counseling and Psychology in Education and is a Licensed Professional Counselor-Mental Health. He is the co-owner of Siouxland Child & Adolescent Therapy Services, LLC. He has experience working with children, adolescents and adults in individual, group, and family settings. Special areas of interest include working with children and adolescents in areas related to abuse issues, trauma, evaluation and therapy for children with sexualized behaviors, grief and loss, depression, anxiety, divorce issues, behavioral issues and adjustment issues. Clint also works with children, adolescents, and adults with developmental disabilities.

Becky Schuldt

Becky is a Licensed Professional Counselor of Mental Health and a board certified art therapist ( She utilizes both sensory and verbal approaches to ensure personalized treatment plans for her clients. Her clinical knowledge of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and art therapy techniques are used to address such mental health concerns as (but not limited to) depression, stress management, grief, anxiety, adjustment disorders, as well as personal growth.

Becky is based in Aberdeen, SD and is licensed in South Dakota. She is currently offering in-office and telehealth counseling.

Haylee “Reay” Cole

Haylee is an advocate for domestic violence awareness. She was born to two parents – one loving and one abusive. As a result, she was a victim of domestic violence at a young age. Her mother was murdered by her father in Pierre, SD when she was just 12. She worked closely with law enforcement in Pierre through all the court proceedings and still keeps in touch with them today.

Since 2008, Haylee has taken every opportunity to speak out on behalf of domestic violence victims. She has traveled across the country speaking to schools, law enforcement, and community events. Haylee served on the National Youth Advisory Board for from 2011-2017 which was a board of teens from around the country. In 2016, she gave a TEDx talk “Domestic Violence: I choose to be her voice” that told her and her mom’s story. The story has been featured on Dateline, The Devil Speaks, and Framed by the Killer.

Haylee has turned her story from tragedy into triumph. She shares a story about domestic violence, working closely with law enforcement, and inspires others to overcome trauma.

Mark Barnett

Mark Barnett has served as an Assistant Attorney General; State’s Attorney; Attorney General for 12 years; and Chief Deputy Attorney General for 5 years. He won every jury trial for 26 years.

Mark was the lead prosecutor in two death penalty cases, including a serial rapist – murderer in Sioux Falls, SD. (Robert Leroy Anderson) Additionally, he argued and won two cases in the United States Supreme Court.

Mark is a staunch advocate of victims, having pushed through legislation for: Victims’ Rights, Victims’ Compensation, one of the first Sex Offender Registries in the nation, creating the crime of Vehicular Battery in serious DUI injuries, and discontinuing “secret” juvenile court in major felonies.

His jury trials have been featured in three different nationally televised crime documentaries, and in a book by FBI Profiler, Roy Hazlewood, titled ‘Dark Dreams.’

Barnett was chosen as Prosecutor of the Year by the South Dakota State’s Attorneys Association. He is a black belt in Shotokan Karate, and serves on the Supreme Court’s Courthouse Security Committee.

Lara R. Roetzel

Lara Roetzel is the State’s Attorney for Pennington County, South Dakota. For twenty-seven years, Lara has been passionately advocating for victims, for justice and striving to prosecute the right people for the right reasons. She specializes in crimes of sexual violence and violence against women. Lara’s cases have been featured on television in episodes of “Snapped” and “See No Evil.” She is trainer for the South Dakota Network Against Family Violence and Sexual Assault and has presented in state and national forums on multiple topics. In 2017, Lara was named the Prosecutor of the Year by the South Dakota State’s Attorney Association. In 2023, she was presented the Children’s Home Society Child Advocacy Center’s Partners Protecting Kids Award.

She is a wife, mother of five, and a chronic volunteer.