Wisconsin Department of Justice

Meet the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Seminar Faculty!


Susan Kanack, BSN, RN, SANE-A, SANE-P is the Wisconsin SANE/Forensic Nursing Coordinator at the Department of Justice, and is an active, practicing forensic nurse at Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.  Prior to working at Froedtert, Susie worked at Advocate Aurora in the Healing & Advocacy Center at Sinai Medical Center in Milwaukee, the busiest sexual assault treatment center in the state.  Susie has been a forensic nurse for 5 years and has seen approximately 350 survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence.  Susie has advanced training in strangulation and Intimate Partner Violence and Lethality Assessment.  Susie also provides expert testimony on the topic of strangulation for the Waukesha County and Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office.  She is a member of the International Association of Forensic Nurses as well as the Wisconsin Chapter.   Prior to becoming a forensic nurse, Susie worked in community/public health in maternal-child health, providing case management to underserved and abused women and families at domestic violence shelters and schools, and Labor and Delivery.


Simmone Kilgore, formerly Stovall, has been providing therapeutic care to survivors of trauma/ sexual assault and domestic violence since 2012.  She has a BA in Management and Communication from Concordia University and a MA in Community Psychology from Alverno College.  As a Licensed Professional Counselor, her focus is mainly on the Neurobiology of Trauma, Trauma Informed Care, Trauma Specific-Interventions, Community Trauma, Culturally Specific Outreach, Mindfulness, Self-Compassion and Self Care.   Simmone has studied and understands how trauma impacts a survivor’s neurobiology, which dictates how survivors process information and mediate behavior.  Simmone seeks to best assist and empower the individuals she serves by utilizing techniques that will aid in reducing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder symptoms.  Simmone has been a Crisis Counselor/Crisis Intervention Screener and now Trauma Therapist at Advocate Aurora Health Care since 2014.  She also has been an adjunct professor in the Masters in Community Psychology graduate program at Alverno College, facilitated therapeutic groups for women of color at Walnut Way LLC., provided community support and education through Milwaukee Health Department’s Office of Violence Prevention and worked with youth development programming through the Center for Self-Sufficiency.   She currently consults/contracts with Children’s Hospital, Milwaukee Public Schools, Sojourner Family Peace Center, Milwaukee Office of Violence Prevention, local churches and youth group homes sharing information relating to trauma, trauma reactions, emotion-regulation, healthy relationships, safety planning etc. Simmone has provided training in the areas of trauma, trauma informed care, trauma specific interventions etc. to emergency department nurses throughout Milwaukee, behavioral health therapists and staff at Aurora Dewey Center, Milwaukee Public Schools’ educators and staff, human trafficking advocates throughout Milwaukee, Milwaukee Film Festival attendees, Wheaton-Franciscan perinatal/neonatal nurses, MillerCoors Brewery and several other specific groups interested in learning more about how trauma impacts cognition and behavior.

Emma Reader, MSW, LCSW  grew up in the Fox Valley, attended UW-Madison to obtain her Bachelor of Arts in Gender & Women’s Studies and Sociology. She went on to earn her Master’s in Social Work at UW- Milwaukee, and simultaneously attained a Certificate in Trauma Informed Care. During Master’s education, she interned with the Sexual Assault Treatment Center of Milwaukee and found her passion. She was hired on as a Crisis Intervention Screener, working directly with our Forensic Nurses and supporting folks who typically had just experienced sexual violence. The initial system response after experiencing sexual violence can create a lasting impact, and provides an opportunity to give control back to survivors.  Emma's role has changed over the years, and now, she provides Trauma Therapy as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker to adults who have experienced sexual and/or domestic violence. She is trained in a variety of modalities, and am particularly enthusiastic about the brain/body connection in understanding and healing from trauma. She has worked with survivors from all backgrounds, and from different stages of their lives and healing journeys. Emma is constantly in awe of people’s capacity to heal and grow, and am grateful to be a witness and a support on that path.

Alison Lopez, RN, SANE-A Since training as a forensic nurse examiner (FNE) in 2006, Alison has gained extensive experience working at Milwaukee County’s busiest comprehensive sexual assault/domestic violence treatment center. She has provided forensic nursing care to nearly 700 women, men and children during her career thus far. Additionally, she has received advanced training in the areas or Strangulation, Intimate Partner Violence/Lethality Assessment and Human Trafficking. In 2015-2016 she served as a presenter in a sexual and gender-based violence study hosted by the International Association of Chiefs of Police. Over the last 10 years she has been involved in various ongoing multidisciplinary initiatives in Milwaukee County focusing on Human Trafficking and Domestic Violence Intervention.                  Alison has provided expert court testimony in the areas of Adult and Child sexual assault as well nonfatal strangulation.  In addition to her work as an FNE, Alison has spent 25 years as an emergency staff nurse and more recently a Nurse Case Manager in the Emergency Department at Ascension Columbia-St. Mary’s in Milwaukee.


Courtney Bouthilet, RN, BSN, SANE-A, SANE-P  holds specialties in Forensics and Critical Care. She is the current Forensic Nursing Co-Coordinator at St. Croix Valley Sexual Assault Response Team in River Falls, Wisconsin serving four counties as an independent mobile SANE program in western Wisconsin. She additionally holds a position as the MICU Charge Nurse at Lakeview Hospital in Stillwater, Minnesota. Courtney has been a Forensic Nurse for 10 years, holding SANE certification in both Adult/Adolescent and Pediatric. In 2020, she completed a three-year term as President of the Wisconsin Chapter of the International Association of Forensic Nurses. Since 2015, Courtney has held a teaching position with the Wisconsin Department of Justice SANE Faculty under the Office of Crime Victim Services and since 2014 has participated on the WI State SANE Documentation and Protocol Committee. Courtney’s educational background includes graduating nursing school from St. Catherine University and Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where she currently is a graduate student with a concentration in Forensic Nursing. 


Deborah Martinez, BSN, RN  has been a SANE RN for 12 yrs and currently practices at Froedtert & The Medical College in Milwaukee; in addition to seeing patients, Deborah also trains new SANE’s.  She has helped to develop and execute SANE simulations as well as a training tool to help new staff become comfortable with the interactions and work that SANEs do.  Deborah has also been a pediatric RN for the past 26 years and has training in de escalation  and Critical Incident Stress Management. Deborah has developed and trained others in Behavioral management and non/de escalation.  


Jamie Counsell, BSN, RN has been an RN for 10 years, a SANE for 8.5 years and SANE Coordinator for 5 years. Assisted in starting the Drug Endangered Children (DEC) Program, Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) and Human Trafficking Task Force in Rock County.  Jamie sits on many panels for human trafficking as well as works with local radio stations and newspapers for educational purposes. In her role as President of the Wisconsin Chapter of the IAFN, Jamie has worked with Wisconsin Attorney General on legislation for sexual assault services and participated in  4 press conferences on behalf of the Wisconsin Chapter of IAFN and Forensic Nurses in the state. 


Tracy Fremming, RN, SANE-A, SANE-P  has been a Registered Nurse for 23 years.  She has worked in Emergency Medicine since 1999. She has been a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) since 2005. Tracy has built several SANE programs around the state. She is nationally certified in both adult and pediatric sexual assault. She is the Forensic Nurse Program Coordinator at Marshfield Medical Center Weston hospital.  She is an active member of Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault and The International Association of Forensic Nurses. She was on the board of directors for the Wisconsin Association of International Association of Forensic Nurses. She is a member of the Marathon County Sexual Assault Intervention Team, Marathon County Domestic Violence Intervention Team, Marathon County SART team and the Marathon County Multidisciplinary Team. Most recently, she was on a team that revised the IAFN SANE-A and SANE-P national exam.


Deanna Grundl, BSN, RN, SANE-A  Since 2008, Deanna began her career as a Forensic Nurse Examiner.  In early 2009, she became responsible for the Forensic Nursing Examiner (FNE) Program at Aurora Sheboygan Memorial Medical Center (ASMMC), on January 1, 2016 she started a FNE Program at Aurora Medical Center in Manitowoc County (AMCMC), on July 1,2017 started the FNE program at Aurora Medical Center in Washington County (AMCWC), and on September 1,2019 at Aurora Medical Center Summit (AMCS).  All four programs in Manitowoc, Sheboygan, and Washington counties serve patients 24/7.  In 2014, Deanna became certified in Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner-Adults (SANE-A).  Deanna received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at University of Oshkosh in 2015.  Deanna is currently involved with the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE)faculty, Dodge, Manitowoc, Sheboygan, and Washington, Waukesha County Sexual Assault Response Teams (SART), Sheboygan County Domestic Assault Response Teams (DART), co-creator and co-chair of Sheboygan County Human Trafficking Response Team, Board of Directors member for Sheboygan County Advocate services, the Sheboygan County Child Death Review Team, Sheboygan and Manitowoc County Drug Endangered Children (DEC) program, Lakeshore Child Advocacy Team Member, and Washington County Anti-Trafficking Team Member.


Andrew Wagner,has been a Police Officer for the past 20 years; 10 of those are in the Sensitive Crimes Division of the Milwaukee Police Department and have investigated hundreds of Sexual Assault Complaints. Andy has also instructed best practices on Sexual Assault investigations to Police Officers, Social Workers, and victim advocates throughout the state of Wisconsin with the Wisconsin Department of Justice.


Corey Norlander,  has served with the Sheboygan County Sheriff’s Office since 1991.  Corey has served about 8 years as a patrol officer, 4 years as a School Resource Officer, 12 years as a detective, and 5 years in supervision of detectives.  During his time as a detective and supervisor, I have had the opportunity to be a founding member of his county's Sexual Assault Response Team (SART), as well as serving on Multi-Disciplinary Teams related to Human Trafficking, Drug Endangered Children, Child Advocacy Centers, and Fire Investigation. After 10 years on the county SART, I left that team so others could serve there, and was then asked to join the Attorney General’s SART, which I currently co-chair.


Amy O'Donahue  has worked in her specialized law enforcement position for almost 20 years. She has focused exclusively on the response to domestic violence and sexual assault, in both adults and children. Developing department policies and protocols; victim-centered forms and documents; programs to better serve populations of those with disabilities and the elderly; providing local and statewide training for law enforcement, social workers, medical staff, advocates, court personnel, corrections, schools, colleges and universities are just a few of those I have shared my expertise and experience.  Amy has been married to her husband Dave, for the past 31 years, who has also served in the US Army for over 32 years.  Amy and Dave have 3 grown sons, Josh, Joe (wife Brittany) and Zach.  In July 2021, Amy looks forward to being a grandma.


C. Jill Poarch, BSN, RN, SANE-A, SANE-P  has been a SANE since 1993, SANE-A since 2002, SANE-P since 2007, the SANE Program Coordinator at Meriter Hospital (Madison, WI) 1998-2008.  Jill has trained new SANEs since 1995 as Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault SANE Faculty and has written several articles and 2 book chapters about SANE and sexual assault.  Jill was the  Chair of International Association of Forensic Nurses Task Force which developed SANE Education Guidelines 2013 (Adult and Pediatric) Chair Wisconsin Chapter International Association of Forensic Nurses Protocols and Documentation Committee and Chair WI DOJ Medical Forensics Crime Lab. Jill is also a  Committee SANE Consultant for Rural WI Health Cooperative Member.



Dan Campbell, Forensic Science Supervisor, DNA Unit has been employed with the Wisconsin State Crime Laboratory in Madison for 27 years.  His first 17 years were as a DNA Analyst analyzing evidence submitted by law enforcement for criminal investigations.  Over the last 10 years, Dan has supervised forensic scientists in the DNA Analysis Unit at the Madison Crime Lab.  Dan has also testified in court over 60 times to his forensic examinations conducted for criminal cases.


John Rice, JD is an Assistant District Attorney for Dane County has been a state prosecutor for about five years.  John has practiced in both Wisconsin and Minnesota. His case load focuses exclusively on cases involving domestic violence, sexual assault, strangulation, and stalking.  John is also a resource prosecutor for the southwest region of Wisconsin. 


Kimberly Hardtke, JD is a 2014 graduate of the University of Wisconsin Law School. She joined the Brown County District Attorney's Office in 2016, where she currently works as an Assistant District Attorney and Regional Violence Against Women Resource Prosecutor. Kim currently prosecutes cases involving violence against women, including domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and human trafficking, and provides support and assistance to other prosecutors in Northeast Wisconsin on cases involving violence against women.


Kelly Andrichik, BS (pronouns are she/her/hers) has been a Police Officer at University of Wisconsin Parkside in Kenosha for over 22 years and holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. On campus she is responsible for Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, and Human Trafficking investigations as well as the training programs surrounding these topics plus Neurobiology of the Trauma Response, victimology, hate crimes, and Bringing in the Bystander for staff, faculty and students on campus and frequently guest lectures in classes on campus as well as surrounding campuses. Kelly is also the Chair of the Kenosha County Sexual Assault Response Team, she travels around the state with the DOJ as part of their speaker’s bureau to train other Law Enforcement on sexual assault best practices and she is a member of NAMI (board member from 2011 to 2020)(National Alliance on Mental Illness). Kelly is on the Speaker’s Bureau for Fight to End Exploitation in Racine, Wisconsin. In 2020, Ofc. Andrichik finalized the certification of the You Have Options Program (YHOP) for her Police Department. Ofc. Andrichik’s department is the first in the state of Wisconsin and the second University in the United States to have this program and offer it to sexual assault survivors. The YHOP gives options to a victim survivor that are not typically offered by a police department, including an anonymous reporting option and an online reporting option. This program is the definition of trauma informed response and allows the person reporting to start and stop at any time before deciding to go forward with a full report. The goal of this program is to help the victim survivor report to law enforcement as they see fit, and also to gather as much information as we can to track serial perpetrators, even if the victim survivor does not decide to go through with a full report.


Robert Pelko is a Correctional Sergeant at Dodge County Correctional Institution/Department of Corrections. Rob has an Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice and has been a Correctional Sergeant for 12 years at Waupun and Dodge Correctional. Rob is also a trained PREA Investigator and Crisis Negotiator for 5-6 years and trained in Empathy Based Interviewing.


Jessica Lind, provides direct intervention services including medical, personal, legal, and criminal justice support to sexual assault victims for 25 years, most currently as a Program Coordinator for Sexual Assault Services for The Women’s Community.  Jessica has developed curriculum and facilitated support groups.  Developed and facilitated prevention education and professional training in the area of sexual assault, domestic violence and child sexual abuse to adults, youth and professionals. Assisted with implementation of SANE Programs in the community, implemented a Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) in Marathon County, trained SANE nurses statewide, and is a trainer for the Wisconsin State Victim Assistance Academy.


Cyrena Martin is an experienced systems advocate for over 8 years, and currently the Executive Director of Mahogany CARES Foundation as well as the Advocacy Coordinator for Ascension’s Mobile Sexual Assault Response Unit in southeast Wisconsin. Cyrena is a Certified Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Advocate, holds a Danger Assessment Certificate, has worked as  Safe at Home Crime Victim Services Application Assistant(2018), NCDA(National Career Development Association) Facilitator in Career Development(2018), and attended SAVAS( Sexual Assault Victim Advocacy School) in 2019 and numerous additional workshops and trainings. Cyrena currently is a Graduate student at Mount Mary University studying Mental health Counseling with a Trauma concentration.


Cassilyn Brown, MSN, RN, SANE-A, SANE-P has been a nurse for 13 years and have been working as a Forensic Nurse for 4 years at Unity Point/Meriter in Madison. Cassilyn sees patients of all ages for sexual and physical assault, as well as strangulation. Cassilyn has provided education on forensic nursing topics to hospital staff, medical school residents, and advocates. She completed her Master’s in Forensic Nursing through Texas A & M University.


Cary Christianson, BSN, RN, SANE-A has been a SANE nurse since 2010 and has worked in the emergency room for 15 years and is currently charge nurse at Gundersen Medical Center in La Crosse.  Cary is currently am an instructor for the ENA’s Emergency Nurse Pediatric Course and the STN’s Advanced Trauma Care for Nurses. Cary has also had the opportunity to teach and instruct on various things such as j-tip, triage education and competency, charge nurse and staff nurse preceptor, barcode medication administration, Epic EMR, and IV pump integration with EMR. As a SANE nurse within our group, Cary is one of the more senior members and provides ongoing leadership, mentoring, and resource knowledge to our group within Gundersen. I have provided care for many patients over the years, including sexual assault, domestic violence, as well as pediatric abuse and physical assault patients. I recently obtained my SANE-A certification offered by the IAFN.


Rachel Cortez, RN, CEN, SANE-A, SANE-P is currently the forensic supervisor at Ascension’s Mobile Sexual Assault Treatment Center, serving Milwaukee, Racine and Waukesha counties.  Rachel has been an active practicing Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner for almost 24 years and has seen over 1,500 cases.  Rachel has developed SANE policies and practice for Ascension on a local, State and National level. Rachel is an active member of the IAFN and a member and past board member of the WI-IAFN since 2010.


Sarah Kolp, RN, SANE-A has been an FNE for 5 years and has seen hundreds of sexual assault patients ranging from infant to elderly at the busiest sexual assault treatment center in the state.  Sarah has courtroom experience, and as testified as witness in both children's court and adult court. Sarah trains Aurora Healing Center Hotline volunteers on sexual assault care and concepts. Sarah has been a preceptor and trainer to new SANE nurses for over 2 years.  She is also an experienced Emergency Room nurse.


Susan Alan-Lee, RN, BSN, BA, SANE-A, SANE-P is a forensic nurse examiner and Program Coordinator at Unity Point/Meriter in Madison.  Susa has been a forensic nurse examiner for more than 5 years and has seen more than 350 cases. As coordinator, Susan designs orientation curriculum and orients new FNEs. Susan also reviews current research on a regular basis and updates staff at monthly meetings and in newsletters.


Debra Donovan, RN, BSHA, SANE-A, SANE-P is the SANE Coordinator for Froedtert & The Medical College SANE Program, and has been an active, practicing FNE for over 25 years.  Prior to Froedtert, Debra led the Sexual Assault Treatment Center at Aurora Sinai in Milwaukee and has been recognized for her groundbreaking work in this field for the city of Milwaukee, and was awarded the WCASA Voices of Courage Award for Health Services (2010) and the Health Care Heroes award by M Magazine and the Biz Times in 2010. Debra has extensive courtroom experience, particularly in high profile cases.

Melissa Vesperman, BSN, RN, SANE-A  has been a forensic nurse with Allina Health in Minnesota (2012-2013) and St. Croix Valley Sexual Assault Response Team since 2012.  Melissa has personally performed or reviewed more than 450 sexual assault, strangulation, trafficking and suspect exams.  She began my career as the Forensic Nurse Coordinator of St. Croix Valley SART in the fall of 2012 and have been teaching SANE content and skills since that date as well.  I joined the Wisconsin Department of Justice SANE faculty in the fall of 2015.  I initially taught the Introduction to SANE, History of SANE courses and moved on to teaching Anatomy, Documentation, Across the Lifespan, Male Exams, Anoscopy and Use of Toulidine Blue Dye.  Spontaneously, while teaching new SANE’s for the state of Wisconsin, St. Croix Valley SART also taught an accredited SANE Adult and Adolescent course for its own nurses.  Melissa is SANE A certified as of 2016 and in addition to teaching experience,  she has extensive continuing education as well.  Some focused education has been on suspect exams, photography, HIV risk and medications, strangulation, pelvic exams, documentation, and injury identification.  


Courtney Watson, MSW is the SAFE Fund Administrator at the Wisconsin Department of Justice, Office of Crime Victim Services.


Melinda Knuth is a Crime Victim Compensation Claims Specialist. She has been employed in this position since October 2016. As a claims specialist, Melinda Knuth processes applications for crime victim compensation including determining eligibility, and providing payments for eligible expenses as appropriate as defined by WI Statute 949. Prior to her work in this role, Melinda Knuth was employed as a Probation/Parole Agent for the Wisconsin Department of Corrections.