The Alfred E. Smith Building in Albany illuminating the night sky in purple

About Our Executive Team

Executive Director Kelli Owens

Kelli Owens is the Executive Director of the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence, the nation’s only executive-level agency solely dedicated to improving the state’s response to and prevention of domestic violence.  

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Jara Traina

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Jara Traina is General Counsel and the Director of the Bureau of Law and Public Safety at OPDV. Ms. Traina comes to us from the Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS), where she was the Director of the Bureau of Domestic Violence Prevention and Victim Support. Over the course of her 13 years at OCFS, she was also a senior attorney with the Division of Legal Affairs, providing legal services for domestic violence programs, the Commission for the Blind, Child Preventive and Protective Services, foster care, juvenile justice and adult protective services. She has also provided ethics training and guidance for OCFS employees. Prior to her work at OCFS, she was a law guardian for the Children’s Law Center in the Bronx, where she represented children in custody/visitation, child welfare, domestic violence and guardianship cases in family court and supreme court matters.

Ms. Traina graduated cum laude from Muhlenberg College and received her juris doctorate from Seton Hall University School of Law. 

Abbey Marr

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Abbey Marr is Associate Counsel and Deputy Executive Director of Gender-Based Violence Prevention and Programming at OPDV. Prior to joining OPDV, Ms. Marr served as Assistant Director of the SUNY Student Conduct Institute (SCI), where she helped college staff and faculty on compliance with Title IX and related state laws, as well as best practices related to sexual violence response in higher education. She previously served in the Office of the Counsel to the Governor of New York, where she handled legal and policy matters related to gender equality, civil rights, and reproductive health; and as a Policy Analyst at Advocates for Youth, where her work included advocacy on state and federal policy related to adolescent sexual health and healthy relationships education in public schools. Between college and law school, she was a Paralegal Specialist at the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division’s Educational Opportunities Section. 

Ms. Marr holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School and a Bachelor's in Political Science and Women's Studies from George Washington University. 

Alyssa DeRosa

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Alyssa DeRosa is an attorney, with several years of public policy experience at the highest levels of New York State government. She most recently served as Assistant Counsel to Governor Kathy Hochul. In the Governor’s Counsel’s Office, she advised the Governor on issues related to public health and gender-based violence, in addition to overseeing major litigation, programming, and regulatory actions at several State agencies. Prior to this role, Ms. DeRosa was an Excelsior Fellow at the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and has worked at the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network, the New York Civil Liberties Union, and the Brennan Center for Justice. She earned her juris doctorate from New York University School of Law in 2018 and graduated summa cum laude from Boston University, where she received a B.A. in History.

Ashley Ryle

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Ashley Ryle is the Deputy Executive Director of Finance and Administration. Prior to joining OPDV, Ms. Ryle served at the NYS Division of Budget in the Fiscal Planning Unit working on the development and management of the State’s cash-based Financial Plan. Prior to that, she was a Deputy Director of Budget Studies at the NYS Assembly Ways and Means Committee where she oversaw a portfolio that included the analysis of the State’s Financial and Capital Plans; as well as the policy analysis and negotiation of funding for Debt Service, Public Authorities, Local Governments, Public Safety, and Victims Services. Ms. Ryle holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from SUNY Albany’s Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from Union College.

Elizabeth Bliss

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Elizabeth Bliss is the Director of Gender-Based Violence Response for the Bureau of Programming & Prevention at OPDV. Ms. Bliss comes to OPDV with 25 years of experience working on the local, statewide, and national levels to improve the response to domestic violence and sexual assault. This experience ranges from working as a front-line advocate partnered with police officers to management-level leadership positions attending to program operations. With a focus on improving the systems that victims of domestic violence and sexual assault must navigate, Ms. Bliss worked on a statewide level addressing legislative policy and providing technical assistance to local programs in NYS seeking to align their services with best practices. Ms. Bliss has also worked on a national level and provided training to multi-disciplinary law enforcement teams across the country regarding the safe supervision of domestic violence offenders who are on probation or parole.

Elizabeth obtained her Master’s Degree in Social Welfare from University at Albany and she was a dual major in Criminal Justice and Psychology at the University of Maryland, College Park where she obtained her Bachelor’s Degree. She has been a psychotherapist for the last two years working with people with a wide range of lived experiences and behavioral health needs.

April Maas

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April Maas is the Director of Policy, Innovation and Professional Education in the Bureau of External Affairs at OPDV. Ms. Maas comes to us from OPWDD Investigations and Internal Affairs where she created a new investigator training program. Prior to OPWDD, much of her career had been spent in the field of child welfare. After 9 years with Chautauqua County Health and Human Services, she was a trainer for child welfare workers and supervisors throughout NYS, working with both CDHS and OCFS. While obtaining her Bachelor’s degree, Ms. Maas worked at Alice Paul House, a domestic violence shelter and rape crisis center in Indiana, PA where she held multiple titles, sparking a lifelong passion for ending gender-based violence. Both her personal and professional goals align with the vision of OPDV to promote gender equality and eradicate social injustice.

Kimberly Bobb

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Kimberly Bobb is the Director of Finance and Administration at OPDV. Prior to coming to OPDV, Ms. Bobb served the State University of New York System Administration (SUNY), Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI) as Project Coordinator for the SUNY Hispanic Leadership Institute under the direction of the President of the University at Albany.  Additionally, she also served as the Compliance Manager for the SUNY Supplier Diversity Program and as Executive Assistant to the Chief Officer of Academic Health and Hospital Affairs. Prior to her work in government, she served as Director of Finance and Administration for Family Planning Advocates of New York State/ Planned Parenthood Advocates of New York. 

Ms. Bobb holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Affairs and a Graduate Certificate in Not-for-Profit Management from Empire State College. She is currently working towards her Master’s Degree in Social and Public Policy.