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PbS Board of Directors

Bartlett Stoodley


Barry Stoodley is the former associate commissioner for the Maine Department of Corrections' Division of Juvenile Services. This agency is responsible for the management and operation of two juvenile correctional facilities as well as a regional network of community-based programs providing detention, diversion and correctional case management services. The Division is committed to the implementation of evidence-based practice and high levels of quality assurance, to ensure positive outcomes for clients, residents, and staff. The Division is also committed to Collaborative Service Planning and the integration of services and programming across functional domains.

From 1971 to 1978, Mr. Stoodley served as a probation-parole officer for the Division of Probation and Parole and as district supervisor directing adult and juvenile community-based programs from 1979 to 1996. From 1996 to 2000 he served as a regional correctional administrator for the newly created Division of Juvenile Services within the Department of Corrections. The work became operationally specialized, focusing exclusively on juvenile offenders including detention, diversion, probation and aftercare functions.

He graduated from Queen's University (Kingston, Ontario, Canada) in 1969 followed by a master's degree in sociology from the University of Toronto in 1971.

Always concerned with improving outcomes for youth and their families, Barry has supported the implementation of a number of new initiatives including Performance-based Standards (PbS), ACA Accreditation, Collaborative Problem Solving, Motivational Interviewing, Jurisdictional Team Planning for Detention, Evidence-Based Practice and Recidivism measurement. Strengths-based approaches, such as Family and Systems Teams have been integrated into the work of the Division.

Sharon Harrigfeld

Vice President

Fariborz Pakseresht (Fair’-borz Pahk’-ser-esht) has served as director of the Oregon Youth Authority since March 2012. He joined OYA in 2008 after seven years in a variety of leadership roles with the Oregon Department of Human Services and 12 years at the Oregon Department of Administrative Services. OYA operates 10 youth correctional facilities across the state charged with protecting the public by reducing crime, holding youth offenders accountable, and providing youth offenders with opportunities for reformation in safe environments.

Most recently, Fariborz has sponsored the development of a new Oregon Youth Authority Performance Management System, which tracks performance against goals for more than 100 core processes. Key to the success of that system is the involvement of employees at all levels and locations within the agency, and quarterly outcome reports. This system is serving as a model for other agencies in Oregon and throughout the nation.

Fariborz also serves in a leadership role on several boards. He is a member of the Public Employee Benefit Board and is past president of the Oregon Public Management Association. His community activities include serving on the board of directors for YMCA of Marion and Polk Counties, the board of the Salem Peace Plaza, and on the planning committee of the Annual Salem Peace Lecture. He also is a fellow in the American Leadership Forum and a member of the Oregon Solutions Camp Odyssey Team. His interests include management theories and practices, personal and organizational change, human potential, communications, quantum physics, and mindfulness. Fariborz earned his bachelors degree in political science from Willamette University in Salem, and holds a certificate in public management from Willamette’s Atkinson Graduate School of Management.

Bob Pidgeon


Robert Pidgeon joined Community Solutions, Inc. (CSI) as the chief executive officer after an extensive career serving as Connecticut's director of juvenile justice. Before that he was deputy director of the New Hampshire Division for Children and Youth Services and was assistant commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Youth Services (DYS). He is a retired colonel with the U.S. Army Military Police Corps and served as the chief of the National Prisoner of War Information Center during Desert Storm.

Bob holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Penn State University, a master's degree in criminology from Florida State University and a master's degree in public administration from Golden Gate University. He has served as vice president of the New England Association of Child Welfare Commissioners and Directors, a member of the American Correctional Association At Risk Children, Youth, and Families Task Force, a regional affiliate of the American Probation and Parole Association, a member of the Connecticut Alcohol and Drug Policy Council, an associate member of the Council of Juvenile Corrections Administrators (CJCA) and as member of the Connecticut Juvenile Justice Advisory Group.

Tonya Wright-Cook


Megan Milner is the Deputy Superintendent at the Kansas Juvenile Correctional Complex and has served in this capacity for the last four years. Megan has also served as the PbS State Coordinator for the Kansas Department of Corrections-Juvenile Services since 2015. Megan has over 15 years of experience in the criminal justice field, working in a variety of areas in the justice system, ranging from juvenile intake and assessment, substance abuse treatment, family drug court, training, and reentry services.

Megan holds a Bachelor’s degree in psychology from Washburn University and a Master’s in Criminal Justice from the University of Cincinnati. She will complete her certificate in public management through the University of Kansas in December 2016. Megan is passionate about program development, leading and sustaining system change, and developing future leaders in the field of corrections.

Mike Dempsey


Michael Dempsey was appointed executive director of the Indiana Department of Correction’s (IDOC) Division of Youth Services in May 2009. He began his assignment with the IDOC as superintendent of the Pendleton Juvenile Correctional Facility in June 2006. Prior to moving to Indiana, he served as the superintendent of the Kansas Juvenile Correctional Complex for approximately two and a half years. He began his career in corrections with the Missouri Department of Corrections, starting as a corrections officer at the Missouri State Penitentiary in 1985. Since that time, Mike has held positions as a correctional sergeant, lieutenant, captain and major. He has also held positions as correctional training officer, internal affairs investigator, assistant superintendent and associate superintendent.

Mike holds a bachelor’s degree in public administration and criminal justice and has been actively involved with the American Correctional Association (ACA) as a member and certified auditor. He has also been involved with the Council of Juvenile Correctional Administrators (CJCA), working with Performance-based Standards (PbS) which is now being implemented in all IDOC juvenile correctional facilities.

Velvet McGowan


Velvet McGowan was appointed as the PbS state coordinator for the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) in August of 2013 after serving as the PbS field liaison for DJJ. Previous to this appointment, Velvet served as the deputy chief for Security and Operations at DJJ with a security cadre of over 300 security officers. She began her career in 1985 as a juvenile correctional officer with SCDJJ and worked her way thru the ranks from security lieutenant to a major of the Internal Training Unit. In 2004, she was promoted as the facility administrator for the Female Offender Program.

In 2006, she was recognized as the "State Employee of the Year" by the Governor of South Carolina. She is a child's advocate who believes that a positive caring adult can make a world of difference in the lives of our youths. Velvet is a national certified licensed trainer for One Circle Foundation and a certified public manager. She's held state office as the vice president for the South Carolina Corrections Association and is a member of the Correctional Peace Officer Association and the American Correctional Association (ACA). Velvet sees her appointment to the PbS Learning Institute board as a privilege and an honor and looks forward to contributing greatly.

Simon G. Gonsoulin


Simon Gonsoulin, the Neglected Delinquent Technical Assistance Center’s (NDTAC) director, brings over 30 years of experience in education, special education, and juvenile justice. In addition to his work with NDTAC, Simon serves as the juvenile justice resource specialist for the Technical Assistance Partnership supporting System of Care communities focusing on the needs of youth involved in the juvenile justice system. He is an expert in issues related to juvenile justice education and administration as well as special education administration. Most recently, as the deputy secretary of the Office of Youth Development within the Governor's Cabinet in Louisiana, he served as the lead administrator for the state's juvenile justice system, including its secure care facilities, statewide probation and parole functions, contracted community-based programming and a newly-created stand-alone state agency of juvenile justice. Prior to that, he served as the state director of education for the same office. Simon also has worked directly in schools and classrooms as both an instructor and principal.

Kelly Caralis


Kelly is a corporate attorney with the law firm of Ruberto, Israel & Weiner, P.C. in Boston, Massachusetts. Her practice is concentrated in representing private companies in a variety of general corporate matters, focusing on mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance transactions and commercial leasing and real estate transactions. She regularly counsels clients on a broad range of business matters including business formation, employment matters, contract negotiation and drafting, technology licensing, business disputes and venture capital financings. She also has experience in loan transactions representing commercial borrowers. Prior to joining Ruberto, Israel & Weiner P.C., she was a corporate attorney with Chu, Ring & Hazel LLP where she primarily focused on representing and counseling privately held emerging and high growth companies in all facets of their expansion and operation. Ms. Caralis holds a bachelor’s degree from Suffolk University and a law degree from Suffolk University Law School. She is admitted to practice law in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.