Selah Freedom Announces New Leadership Team
Seasoned Professionals Bring Expertise to their Mission to End Sex Trafficking
Selah Freedom is excited to announce the addition of four dynamic professionals to their leadership staff. With unparalleled success since their inception in 2011, Selah Freedom has set the bar high in serving survivors of sex trafficking and exploitation and those at-risk for exploitation. In 2018, they educated over 1.2 million and served thousands of survivors, children and teens.
2019 is taking the organization to a higher level than ever before by expanding their programs from coast to coast with new Directors on staff, each bringing years of experience and proven success.
“Selah Freedom has completed seven years and is headed into our eighth year by taking everything to the next level with a national presence and programming from Chicago, Florida, Los Angeles, New York and Washington D.C. We needed leaders that have come from much larger industries, handling budgets of over $55 million and the best programming team that can be found anywhere in the country. We are thrilled to announce our new Directors,” says Elizabeth Melendez Fisher, President/CEO Selah Freedom and The Selah Way Foundation.
Paula Meyer Besler is the Director of Advocacy and Awareness. She has been a lifelong advocate of survivors of sexual abuse and has a passion to prevent and eradicate sex trafficking in our country. Prior to joining Selah Freedom, Ms. Besler worked to fight the Opioid epidemic and previously was a Director of Community and Health Relations with Advocate Health Care for 6 years, where she managed government and community relations in addressing identified community health needs. She was a healthcare trial attorney and the managing law partner of a Chicago office over a twenty-year period as well as an Administrator and Adjunct Law Professor for 10 years at Loyola University Chicago School of Law. She also has experience working in Cook County State’s Attorney’s Sex’s Crime Unit, Mass Molestation Division, as well as representing pro bono and/or counseling women and children survivors of domestic violence and sexual abuse. Ms. Besler graduated cum laudewith a BS in Business from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and received her JD law degree from the Loyola University Chicago of Law. She also has completed her coursework for an LLM (Master of Law) in Child Law with focus on abuse and neglect, with her thesis to be completed.
Meiko Taylor is the Director of Prevention.Nearly a decade of working in a residential facility with at-risk youth in foster care and on probation, has prepared her for this role. She has helped the organization create cutting-edge curriculums which engage and equip kids K-12, parents, teachers and those who work in the system, to help youth recognize exploitation and protect themselves from predators. Meiko holds a bachelor’s degree from Loyola University Chicago and an MBA.
Sarah Frazer is the Director of Residential Programming. She is passionate about serving survivors recovering from trauma, helping them discover their true value and accomplish their dreams and goals. As the dynamic leader of the Residential Program, she oversees programming helping survivors step into the freedom they deserve. Frazer attended DePaul University, Dominican University’s graduate school of social work and has been working in the social services and mental health field since 2008.
Dede Jones is the Director of Outreach. Over a decade of experience in victim services has led her to be expert in serving this population. She is certified in facilitating Moral Recognition Therapy and possesses years of hands-on experience providing her with insight into addiction/drug abuse and its effects on survivors. She has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from University of South Florida paired with her master’s degree in Professional Counseling from Liberty University.