Staff

Staff

Rafael de Castro
Executive Director
A graduate of Louisiana State University, Rafael de Castro has worked in Business Development and Non-Profit Management for the last 31 years. Before joining LaFASA he served as the Executive Director of Youth Oasis, a nonprofit agency that primarily operates a Homeless Shelter for youth ages 10-17 years old.  During his time at Youth Oasis, Rafael was responsible for a complete transformation of the agency resulting in a 170% increase in provided bed-nights and the development of the gulf coast region’s first Transitional Living Program for LGBTQ homeless youth ages 16-21.  In a previous role as Executive Director of the National Independent Nursery Furniture Association, he worked to ensure safer sleeping environments for infants by serving as a member of the CPSC Infant Bedding Task Force Committee and participating in ASTM subcommittees to establish the ASTM Consumer Safety Specifications for Full-Size Baby Cribs (F1169). Rafael is a Louisiana native and excited to lead the LaFASA team.




Jessie Nieblas
Director of Education and Prevention
Jessie Nieblas received her Master of Public Health from Tulane University in the Department of Global Community Health and Behavioral Science and her Bachelor of Arts from the University of California at Santa Barbara in Women's Studies.  In her 10 years of work on sexual violence prevention and intervention, reproductive health and rights, and health care access, Jessie has designed, implemented, and evaluated programs; conducted outreach and engagement efforts with diverse communities; and raised funds through direct appeals, grants, and events.  She has served as co-chair of Take Back the Night at UCSB, volunteered on RAINN's Online Hotline, and co-founded a fund to provide financial assistance to women needing reproductive health care in New Orleans.  Jessie is a California native who enjoys travelling and cooking.


 
Sean Cassidy
Legal Advocate
Sean graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans (B.A. Political Science, 1996 and J.D., 2000) and was a civil litigator for 15 plus years, mostly focused on environmental litigation. He was a proud member of litigation teams nominated as finalists in the Public Justice Foundation’s Trial Lawyer of the Year in both 2012 (Mingo County Coal Slurry Litigation) and 2013 (Hairston v. Equitable Production Company). Sean is honored to zealously advocate for survivors of sexual assault.





Brittany Hunt
Justice Systems Coordinator
Brittany graduated from Vassar College in 2012 with a BA in English and Women's Studies. She earned her Masters in Social Work from Tulane University in 2014 where she worked in a clinical setting with survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, focusing much of her work on using the creative arts as a means of healing. Since then Brittany has worked as an advocate in medical and military settings. She is passionate about improving systemic responses to sexual assault and providing education on healthy relationships and positive sexuality. She joined the LaFASA staff in 2016 and is excited to continue this work state-wide. When she's not working as an advocate, she is writing and performing comedy around New Orleans, reading for her feminist book club, and trying to put outfits on her cat.


 

Tori Placona
Outreach Coordinator
Tori Placona graduated from Sweet Briar College in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts in Government. Born and raised in Virginia, Tori has always been passionate about social justice work and has worked in the non-profit industry for 9 years. Before joining LaFASA, she worked for the YMCA and local organizations focused on youth and community development. She is now excited about assisting Louisiana victims and survivors to the get help and support they need. Tori is responsible for managing LaFASA's website, social media, resource library, and all LaFASA publications.




Josef Canaria
Campus Sexual Assault Project Coordinator
Josef proudly serves as the Program Assistant for LaFASA. He grew up in Colorado and I graduated from Colorado State University in 2013 with a BA in Political Science, Communication Studies, and a Minor in Women’s Studies. Before coming down to Louisiana, he served with an education-focused AmeriCorps program aimed at increasing the graduation rates amongst today’s youth in San Antonio, Texas he worked with a group of feisty 4th graders! He is passionate about learning about social justice issues and being an agent of positive social change.
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