Since 1984, Suzanne Freed has been the CEO of Upstate Bed & Biscuit, a large pet boarding, grooming a daycare facility which has a staff of 14 people and has been recognized as being the best business for the Pet Care in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Through her business, Suzanne has sponsored several events to support nonprofit organizations including Service Dogs for Veterans, South Carolina Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention & the Spartanburg Humane Society. She has also served on various Board of Directors including the Spartanburg Humane Society & Brigantine Quarters Home Owners Association.
Suzanne is a native of South Carolina and has her Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of South Carolina. A mother of four grown children, with one still attending a S.C. university, Suzanne has been actively involved with the non-profit organization, SAVE-Stop Abusive & Violent Environments & the Campus Justice Coalition. Through SAVE, Suzanne has lobbied at the state and federal levels to change the inequitable TIX bias investigation, adjudication & disciplinary processes of accused students.
Susan Kaplan, attorney at The Kaplan Law Office, represents students and faculty accused of sexual assault and Title IX violations and retaliation and she and her partner, Charles Caranicas, have extensive experience in state and federal courts litigating discrimination actions. She has helped resolve and settle Title IX controversies and has won a preliminary injunction against a professional school’s suspension of a student just weeks before he was to graduate.
Prior to being a lawyer, Ms. Kaplan, who holds a PhD, was the founder and Director of the Institute Honors Program at the Virginia Military Institute, where she also counseled and represented students accused of violating the college’s iconic honor code. As such, she brings a unique perspective to campus disciplinary actions. Ms. Kaplan has spoken at various symposia about the legality of Title IX, including the Joint National Conference of the Association of Title IX Administrators (ATIXA), the Second Annual Symposium on Representing Students Accused of Sexual Assault, and addressed fallacies and biases in Title IX tribunals at SAVE’s panel on Campus Sexual Assault: Bringing an End to Second-Class Justice (video link).
Beth Lorenz, Attorney. Beth earned her undergraduate degree in Public Policy from Duke University and a JD from the University of Pennsylvania, where she was both a member of the law review and a legal writing instructor. She worked as an attorney in private practice, where she helped school districts to comply with desegregation orders, and for the Department of Education, where she worked with DOE program staff to draft and revise regulations regarding a broad range of educational programs and standards. After leaving the DOE to raise three children, Beth volunteered in the schools her children attended, served on her town zoning board, and volunteered as a court appointed advocate for foster children.
Beth has been volunteering for FACE since 2015 because she is concerned about the current climate on college campuses created by overly broad definitions of sexual misconduct, unfair investigation and disciplinary processes that do not protect the rights of accused students, and the absence of penalties for false accusations. As a former Department of Education staff attorney, Beth is particularly concerned about the overreach of the April 2011 Dear Colleague letter issued by the DOE Office for Civil Rights, which mandated changes in campus policies and procedures for handling sexual misconduct allegations, including the use of the very low preponderance of the evidence standard of proof, without going through notice and comment rule-making.
Sheena Monnin is the CEO of Custom Life Design, a rapidly growing consulting business that specializes in taking Psychology to the workforce and improving management, employee, and customer relationships. Sheena is the author of ‘Hands on the Wheel: Getting Control of Your Life’, a self-help book for those who struggle with boundaries, manipulation, and busy-ness. Sheena was Miss Pennsylvania USA 2012 and knows firsthand what conflict and bullying feels like due to the subsequent Miss USA controversy and lawsuit. Sheena has her Master’s degree in Psychology and has enjoyed a 14 year membership in Toastmasters International, is a recent member of Rotary International, and a member of the Chamber of Commerce.
Margot Pinto is currently at stay at home mother of 4 with advanced degrees in law and clinical social work. She currently sits on the boards of the Denver Scholarship Foundation and the Breakthrough National Collaborative. As a woman of color with three sons she has long fought battles of racial injustice. She became interested in FACE as an extension of the work that she has done to promote equality.
Margot B. Schonholtz
Margot B. Schonholtz, Attorney. Margot has been a practicing lawyer for more than 35 years. She applies business, financial, and legal expertise to prevent and resolve complex and contentious commercial litigation and commercial bankruptcy matters. Margot married in 1981, and she and her husband raised three sons in Brooklyn, New York.
Margot’s affiliation with FACE results from her belief that no institution of higher learning should impair or destroy any person’s future based on arbitrary, inconsistently applied mandates from the government. During the time her sons have been college students, she has seen the evolution of rules governing sexual conduct on college campuses which violate basic precepts of justice in America. Margot’s goal is to help upgrade procedures to ensure that the rights of both the accuser and the accused are protected, while affording due process to the accused and justice to the accuser.
Dianna Thompson is a nationally recognized expert on families, stepfamilies, and divorce-related issues, and is a longtime advocate for the falsely accused. She learned about and became involved with FACE while lobbying and testifying against California’s affirmative consent law and similar federal laws. An author of opinion pieces on sexual assault, Dianna has been quoted in the media and on radio shows.
Dianna believes that students who have been falsely accused of sexual assault on college campuses don’t receive adequate due process protections and face biased school tribunals that require only the lowest standard of proof and use overly broad definitions of sexual assault, all of which often result in expulsion from their colleges. Dianna states, “These destructive laws and policies come at a time when we’re already seeing college male dropout rates climbing and their college completion rates falling.” She hopes to use her political background and media experience to help restore due process rights on college campuses and to eliminate the devastation experienced by falsely accused students and their families as a result of these laws and policies.
Nicholas H. Wolfinger is Professor of Family and Consumer Studies and Adjunct Professor of Sociology at the University of Utah.He received his undergraduate degree at the University of California, Berkeley and his Ph.D. at UCLA, both in sociology. He is the author of several books, the most recent of which is Soul Mates: Religion, Sex, Children, and Marriage among African Americans and Latinos (with W. Bradford Wilcox; Oxford University Press, 2016). Nick is also the author of about 40 scholarly articles or chapters, as well as short pieces in The Atlantic, National Review, Huffington Post, and elsewhere.
In 2016 Nick was found “not responsible” by his university in a Title IX case. He wrote about his experience here. Nick is a strong believer in the original mandate of Title IX, but feels it was disastrously distorted by the 2011 Dear Colleague Letter. Due process is an integral part of a free society, and ultimately vital to a system of adjudication that protects the interests of both accused and accuser.Nick splits his time between Northern California and Salt Lake City, Utah.