Youth-LED Justice Staff
Daniel Banks (he/him)
Daniel joined the Maine Youth Court team in July 2021. Daniel comes to the organization with a background in supporting community-driven nonprofits. Daniel first came to Southern Maine as a student at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, where he grew a strong affection for the community. More recently, Daniel has worked on enacting social justice and restorative justice initiatives on a community level while running a nonprofit media organization in Minneapolis. Daniel has also worked directly with youth internationally as a Fulbright Fellow. Now back in Maine, Daniel is excited to support Youth-LED Justice and to enjoy all of the arts offerings and bike trails that our area has to offer.
La Michael Gildersleeve (he/him)
Regional program director (Lewiston/Auburn region)
La Michael grew up in the Lewiston/Auburn area and now serves youth and families in this region as a Restorative Coordinator. La Michael brings over twelve years of leadership and experience facilitating restorative processes to the Youth-LED Justice team. He is a skilled coach and peer mentor for people in recovery. He sees restorative justice as an essential part of creating a world where all young people have the support and resources they need. In his words, "I believe youth are the future, and that they always deserve a second chance." When he’s not working, La Michael spends time with his children, and loves to hike, fish, and camp.
Abi Maycock (she/her)
Abi joined the Maine Youth Court team in March 2013. Abi’s skills as a youth organizer and facilitator were quickly evident once she joined our team. In addition to her day-to-day programmatic duties, she offers a clinical perspective and supervision for staff. Abi has been a facilitator and coordinator for Seeds of Peace, a multinational peace building and leadership camp for youth. Abi has also led youth sports and leadership programs in Palestine. She worked as the Assistant Director at The Community Day School Association, Madrona Branch and helped form the Art Affect Project while living in Seattle, WA. Abi graduated with a BA in International Studies from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana in 2009. She holds a Master in Social Work, Clinical focus and Applied Arts and Social Justice Certificate from the University of New England. Abi currently holds a Social Worker Conditional Clinical license and receives clinical supervision from a licensed Master in Social Work. She is deeply passionate about social justice, trauma-informed care, youth advocacy and cultural humility. Abi is committed to fostering a more safe, inclusive and accepting community in her home state.
Leigh-Ashley Pettengill (she/her)
REGIONAL PROGRAM DIRECTOR
(Cumberland and Southern Sagadahoc Counties)
Leigh-Ashley joined the Youth-LED Justice team in January 2020. Leigh-Ashley's experience in the public school system over the past three years has provided her with an understanding of how important it is to support youth on their own terms. Youth deserve to be safe, surround themselves with people that care about them, and they deserve the space to develop their identity. LeighAshley is deeply interested in the act of accountability through compassionate processes, trauma-informed practices, youth empowerment, and the highlighting of marginalized voices as a way of dismantling power imbalances. Leigh-Ashley has worked with youth of all ages, K-12. She graduated from the University of Southern Maine with a Bachelor's in Music Education, and a continued belief in the healing properties of creating and sharing art. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, camping, and playing the viola. Leigh-Ashley feels passionately about contributing to a more inclusive and caring community. She feels grateful to work amongst a team of people who also care deeply about youth and their support systems.
Sam Seagren (she/her)
RESTORATIVE COORDINATOR (LEWISTON/AUBURN REGION)
Sam joined the Youth-LED Justice team in February, 2022 as a Restorative Coordinator in the Lewiston/Auburn region. Sam was first introduced to restorative justice during her time with City Year Americorps where she facilitated community circles with her 7th grade after-school students. She studied Philosophy at Lewis & Clark College focusing on ethics, well-being, and implicit bias. She is currently studying restorative justice online through Vermont Law School. Sam is passionate about youth and the hope that they represent. She believes that we are all capable of change and in need of healing.
RESTORATIVE COORDINATOR (CUMBERLAND AND SOUTHERN SAGADAHOC COUNTIES)
Savo joined the Youth-LED Justice team in July 2021 as the Cumberland/Sagadahoc Restorative Coordinator. Savo began their work in restorative justice during their undergrad at Swarthmore College. Alongside their close friends, Savo is passionate about uplifting affirming models of justice and has experience organizing to dismantle oppressive systems. From developing a student organization on their college campus called Communities of Restorative Education (CORE), writing an extensive thesis on how queer, youth of color are effected by the school-to-prison pipeline in under-resourced schools, and co-teaching a college class on how restorative justice can help heal America’s education system—Savo is ready to continue their work of putting restorative, diversion processes into practice at Youth-LED Justice. Savo is energized by the transformational work their colleagues at YLJ have already done, and they are excited to continue this work and lean into the horizon of a future that honors humanity’s wholeness.
Advisory Council Members
Youth-LED Justice is guided by a group of community members who offer guidance, direct policy, and inform best practices to ensure the program's success.
Current Youth Members:
Su'di Abdirahman, Former Volunteer
Don Burke, LCPC, LADC
Sarah Branch, Defense Attorney
Steve Labonte, Juvenile Community Corrections Officer
Eliza Mette, Health Policy Associate
Victoria Morales, State Representative
Spencer Traylor, Educator