Miriam Mohamed Executive Director

Before joining ONCAC, Miriam Mohamed served as Coordinator of Kids’ Place, Licking County’s accredited child advocacy center, and Kids’ Team, a multidisciplinary team that responds to child abuse, from November 2012 until December 2016. As a member of Kids’ Team, she provided case coordination and victim advocacy services to all child victims and their families. Miriam previously served as the Program Director of Girls Inc. of the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area before moving overseas to volunteer with the Education Development Center on a United States Agency for International Development-funded youth development program. Miriam received a bachelor’s degree in Biology and Peace, Justice, and Conflict Studies from Goshen College in Goshen, Indiana.

Dominique Burns, PhD, LPC, NCC Statewide Human Trafficking Director

Dominique Burns, PhD, LPC (OH), NCC joined ONCAC in 2019. She received her PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision in December 2018 from the University of Toledo, in Toledo, Ohio. Dr. Burns received her MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (2015) from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nevada. In addition to receiving her BA in Psychology (2012) from Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio. Dr. Burns is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Ohio and Nationally Certified Counselor (NCC), she has clinical experience within clinical agencies, non-profit facilities, and college-counseling settings in Las Vegas, as well as North and Southwest Ohio. Previously, she served as a victim advocate and professional counselor for a community agency in Clark county serving underserved and underrepresented populations including survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, rape, and sexual assault. Her professional experience includes counseling, teaching, research, and serving marginalized and underrepresented populations. Dr. Burns has presented at international, national, state, and local conferences on topics relating to advocacy, counselor education, human trafficking, sexual violence, and social justice in addition to published peer-reviewed articles. Dr. Burns became a research intern at the Human Trafficking and Social Justice institute under the direction of Dr. Celia Williamson in 2016. Her doctoral dissertation explored independently licensed professional counselors’ perceptions, understanding, and lived experience with human trafficking funding provided by a state grant. Dr. Burns is passionate about the anti-trafficking movement. She continues efforts to combat human trafficking through training, education, and research to improve service outcomes and support for survivors of human trafficking. In her downtime, Dr. Burns loves being outdoors, yoga, dance, poetry, reading, and spending time with family and friends.

Courtney Turner Statewide MDT Coordinator

Courtney served as the Coordinator and Victim Advocate of Kids’ Place, Licking County’s child advocacy center in 2012. As the coordinator and victim advocate, Courtney provided victim services to all children and families as well as coordinated the multi-disciplinary team. In October 2012, Courtney accepted a position with Licking County Children Services as an intake investigator. Courtney continued to serve on the Kids’ Team Advisory Council and co-chaired this council in addition to serving as a Forensic Interviewer and social worker for child victims through 2019. In the absence of a coordinator in 2018, Courtney was able to guide her multi-disciplinary team through reaccreditation and coordinate the team while serving in her position as an intake social worker. During her work with Licking County Children Services, Courtney presented to mandated reports, first responders and other professionals about reporting and recognizing child abuse and neglect. Courtney received her BA in criminology from the Ohio State University in 2008 and her AAS in Forensic Science in 2006.
Courtney is passionate about bringing awareness about recognizing child abuse and neglect as well as providing information about the process and benefit of having an abused child seen at a child advocacy center.

Marya L. Simmons Statewide Program Coordinator

Marya L. Simmons is the Statewide Program Coordinator with the Ohio Network of Children’s Advocacy Centers. Ms. Simmons is a national presenter, has two degrees in criminal justice, is certified as a chemical dependency counseling assistant, and a member of Tiffin University’s Chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma National Criminal Justice Honor Society.

Previously, Ms. Simmons was the Victim-Witness Unit Supervisor at the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, where she supported victims and witnesses throughout the judicial system process. Prior to joining the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, she was a Justice System Advocate at the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center, where she supported survivors of sexual assault inside and outside of the criminal justice system. She has advocated for women who have been diagnosed with drug and alcohol dependency and mental health illnesses, and she is adept to working with diverse populations while addressing the many needs of survivors beyond just their cases.

Marya Simmons actively supported victims associated with Cuyahoga County’s CODIS Task Force (Untested Rape Kit Initiative) since 2013, is a Registered Advocate with Senior Standing with the State of Ohio, and is on the Executive Committee for the Cuyahoga County Sexual Assault Response Team. Ms. Simmons has also received the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office’s 2016 award for Distinguished Contributions to Victim Advocacy.