HARRISBURG—Governor Tom Wolf recently announced his nomination of Suzanne V. Estrella, Esq. to serve at the Victim Advocate in the Pennsylvania Office of Victim Advocate (OVA). The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape strongly supports the Gov. Wolf’s selection to a position critical to the care and healing of crime victims throughout the Commonwealth and the oversight of restorative justice programs.
Suzanne has a strong history of successfully advocating for survivors of domestic and sexual violence crimes in the last 13 years in both Pennsylvania and Florida. Her abilities, knowledge, and trauma-informed approach to serve her clients has not only met a high standard of professionalism in victim services but also exemplifies what Pennsylvanians will expect from the Victim Advocate. PCAR recognizes that Ms. Estrella will continue to be an excellent collaborator with the victim services community and continue to engage the community to work together in supporting survivors as she has done for years.
As a member of PCAR since 2016, our organization has seen firsthand her visionary leadership in her role as Legal Director.
“Suzanne’s impact at PCAR was felt from the moment she joined our team,” PCAR COO Joyce Lukima said. “Her passionate commitment to supporting victims and survivors across diverse backgrounds, experiences and needs helped many seek justice and continue in the healing process. We look forward to Suzanne’s confirmation in the Senate and the positive impact she will make supporting crime victims and their loved ones in the Commonwealth.”
Ms. Estrella led the organization to the creation of the Sexual Violence Legal Assistance Project which now employs five attorneys including a paralegal. This program continues to provide free holistic legal advice and counsel, and short-term representation to victims of rape and sexual assault. It was designed to fill existing gaps where local community legal services are unavailable, and gives priority to victims of non-intimate partner sexual assault. Her efforts and leadership were able to build this program from the ground up to serve nearly 200 survivors to date.
Ms. Estrella has demonstrated many strengths as PCAR’s legal director representing survivors and just as importantly also displays the compassion for survivors, passion to help them on their path. Additionally, as the leader for one of Pennsylvania’s agencies, her excellent management skills will be a benefit to Pennsylvania taxpayers to ensure efficiencies from staff and the highest level of professional service.
PCAR congratulates Suzanne Estrella on the nomination to serve as the Victim Advocate and looks forward to working with her after the Senate’s confirmation.