April 12, 2019 5:11 pm

Pierce College Fort Steilacoom is hosting a special event on April 17, shining a spotlight on women in a variety of criminal justice careers. Attendees will have the unique opportunity to learn more about the inspiration, challenges and triumphs of nontraditional voices of the criminal justice system.

The event will feature a panel of women who will share their experiences working in what many consider to be a male-dominated field.

The event’s keynote speaker is Sgt. Loi Dawkins of the King County Sheriff’s Office. A Tacoma native, Sgt. Dawkins earned a bachelor’s degree in political science, and master’s in public administration, both from University of Washington. She has worked in patrol assignments for six years, and served as a detective for 10 years. Sgt. Dawkins received the department’s Detective of the Year Award in 2015.

The event will also feature remarks from the following panelists:

  • Captain Monica Alexander, Washington State Patrol
  • Clarissa Fletcher, Juvenile Probation Counselor, Pierce County Juvenile Detention Center
  • Jessica Perva, Investigator, Washington Corrections Center for Women
  • Helen Stieben, Patrol Officer, Tacoma Police Department
  • Yolanda Guiler, Corrections Deputy, Pierce County Sheriff’s Department/Corrections Bureau

Attendees will also have an opportunity to meet the panelists before and after the event, and ask questions during the discussion. Pierce College Criminal Justice students will serve as the panel moderators.

“It’s so important for women – and everyone, really – to see women in these positions in criminal justice,” said Bobi Foster-Grahler, criminal justice program director. “This is a wonderful chance for students to get to know members of our local criminal justice community who are willing to donate their time and help them find their path.”

A number of recruiters from local criminal justice agencies will also be in attendance, as well as representatives from a number of four-year universities. Refreshments will also be available for attendees.

The event takes place from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in Pierce College Fort Steilacoom’s Health Education Center, room 302.